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The publicity around Hexmags hasn’t always been good. When the original Hexmags hit the market, there were reports of reliability issues.
The Hexmag Series 2 Polymer Magazine is designed to be an improvement over the original Hexmag. But does it solve the problems of the original Hexmag magazine?
Reports from the internet have been mostly positive. That’s good, because the Hexmag Series 2 would be an affordable and cool looking PMAG alternative, if it’s durable and reliable.
I picked up a Hexmag or two to find out if the Hexmag Series 2 runs better than its predecessor.
One of the biggest sales points for the Hexmag is the ergonomics. The hexagonal pattern on the body is supposed to provide superior grip. And it looks cool. But does it work?
The hexagonal pattern does seem to work as a grip texture. It’s arguably better than the waffle pattern on the PMAG. The hexagonal pattern has more ridges in places where you can snag them with your fingertips.
Additionally, the hexagonal grip pattern extends over the base plate. It’s actually kind of handy for pulling the magazine out of a magazine carrier or pocket.
Keep that little orange dot in mind. I’ll get to it shortly.
The hexmag also has texturing on the belly and spine that’s similar to the texture on a PMAG. This is pretty standard. But it’s good that Hexmag didn’t leave it out.
Lastly, the Hexmag has a similar profile to a PMAG. For me, it’s the best magazine profile. I’ve used magazines with a bulkier shape. And a bulkier magazine is noticeably less comfortable for me.
Also, the Hexmag will fit into any magazine carrier that will fit a PMAG. All in all, the slim profile seems to be the way to go.
Ultimately, one of the most prominent features of the Hexmag truly is a feature. The hexagonal pattern works as advertised. And they’ve used it thoughtfully enough to make it an upgrade over most other magazine textures.
In most aspects, the Hexmag Series 2 is an AR-15 magazine. Magazines don’t have to offer that much functionality. They just have to put bullets in the gun.
However, the Hexmag manages to offer some additional functionality. Remember that orange dot on the base plate from earlier? That’s not just for taking the magazine apart.
Hexmag offers different color inserts. The HexID inserts give you a way to label your magazines without using tape or writing on your magazines. Is that better? Is it worth the money for new inserts? Maybe. That’s up to you. But most magazines don’t even have this option.
Also, the Hexmag base plate is super easy to remove. Most polymer magazines can be pretty easily stripped. But you often need a key or something because the button is just a tad too narrow to depress with your fingertip.
The Hexmag base plate is easy to remove with your finger. The hexagonal button is wide enough that you can depress it with your fingertip. I don’t take my magazines apart that often. But it’s a good feature.
My only gripe with the Hexmag design is that there are no drain holes in the base plate. It’s not like I shoot my gun underwater that much. But the drain holes do have utility for some shooters. And there’s no real downside to including them.
But, overall, the Hexmag Series 2 comes out ahead on the functionality front.
Given how easy it is to remove the base plate, I had some concerns about the base plate coming loose if you dropped the magazine, especially considering I regularly drop my magazines on a cement floor. Magazines occasionally explode on the range where I shoot.
So far, the Hexmag hasn’t burst open from hitting the concrete floor. I think that’s because the base plate is easy to remove due to the large and easy to access button, not because it’s shallower than other polymer magazine base plates.
The feed lips are also relatively thick, maybe a tad thicker than the feed lips on a PMAG. The feed lips are shaped differently than the PMAG feed lips. But the design doesn’t seem to present any durability issues.
All in all, the Hexmag appears just as durable as any other polymer magazine, which is about as good as it gets.
The biggest criticism of the original Hexmag was that it had reliability issues. These were valid complaints. Magazines are probably the most common source of AR-15 malfunctions.
Fortunately, the Hexmag Series 2 seems to have remedied the problems that plagued the original Hexmags. There were no issues through a few hundred rounds, with a few Hexmags. The Hexmags ran fine in both the standard length and short rifles (14.5” and 11.5”), with and without suppressors.
Caption: Celebrity guest tester from the range trying the Hexmag Series 2.
Will the Hexmag stay reliable for as long as PMAG? It’s tough to say. But there doesn’t seem to be any reason why a Hexmag would break down sooner than a PMAG.
The reliability issues with the original Hexmag may have been related to quality control issues. Our testing may not have been extensive enough to verify an improvement in quality control. I simply didn’t have enough magazines to find out if there’s large scale consistency issues with the Hexmag.
However, from the Hexmags we’ve used, the reliability issues seem to have been solved with the Hexmag Series 2.
Is there a Hex?
Evidently not. If there was, Hexmag may have broken it with the Hexmag Series 2. The Series 2 Hexmag seems to be durable and reliable.
As a PMAG alternative, it’s basically a PMAG clone. The Hexmag fits in the same magazine carriers. The grip texture is as good or better than the waffle pattern on the PMAG. And the Hexmag is just as easy to handle as a PMAG.
Also, the Hexmag is available in a 15-round model, just in case you need something a little more compact.
If you trust the new model, the Hexmag is a great PMAG alternative. It works just as well. And the Hexmag is even more affordable. It’s certainly worth a try.