You may have been at the range recently when you noticed the guy next to you had a strange looking magazine seated in his AR. It is possible that this was an ordinary magazine that featured a wrap of some sort.
Some AR 15 Mag wraps are nothing more than stickers applied to the magazines. Others may be rubber sleeves or heat shrunk vinyl patterns applied to the exterior of your magazines.
Style – The Number 1 Reason People Wrap Their AR 15 Mags
Many people really enjoy the way an AR rifle looks. They may choose to deck it out with parts and features that really make it stand out.
Well chosen graphics and accessories can really boost an AR rifle to the point of being a conversation piece as much as a tool. Graphics such as American Flags, Tanks and Punisher Skulls are just a few of the options available for wrapping your magazines.
Beyond the cool factor though there are a few practical reasons why a style wrap may be a good choice for your AR platform. If you do a lot of competition shooting or attend shoot house type events you may frequently be shooting in close proximity to others. As you cycle through mag changes during the competition mags are frequently dropped on the ground.
It is during these times, that confusion as to which mag belongs to who begins to arise. This is where a wrapped magazine would clearly stand out.
Another use for different wraps on a mag would be if you fire different types of ammo on occasion. By wrapping your magazines in different patterns it will be far easier for you to select the correct magazine. Thus quickly locating the proper ammo for the situation.
Function – The Real Reason You Should Be Wrapping Your AR Magazines
In addition to quickly selecting the right magazine wraps can serve real functions. Most magazines are originally sold in black or grey colors. By wrapping them you can add camo patterns consistent with your other gear.
Gripping wraps provide a sure grip on the magazine during magazine swaps and tactical reloads. This may become even more important in cooler weather when magazines may gather moisture from the air and become slippery. Magsocs are a similar type product that help with gripping the magazine.
Ultimately the Choice is Yours
While I do see some advantage in using magazine wraps designed for grip, the choice really comes down to your tastes. Modern P style magazines along with many others already provide ample grip. With that in mind applying wraps would not provide much benefit.
However, if using older GI magazines or other metal mags then the added grip and possible protection for the metal provided by a mag wrap might be worth your time.
But let’s face it the real reason for AR 15 Mag Wraps is the cool factor. Because, after all looking good while you do it, is often just as important as getting it done.