How To Remove a Glock Magazine Base Plate | Clean a Glock Magazine

Glock Magazine Disassembly & Cleaning
Glock Magazine Disassembly & Cleaning

How to Remove A Glock Base Plate, Disassemble & Clean A Glock magazine

This article will explain in detail how to remove to base plate (floor plate), take apart (disassemble) and clean your Glock magazines. All Glock magazines are constructed the same way, regardless of capacity or caliber. Glock magazines require a certain type of tool to remove the base plate and disassemble, unlike the vast majority of other magazine brands that come apart with a bit less effort.

I hope to help by making it easier by showing that Glock magazine disassembly and cleaning can be quick and easy!

Related Glock Articles:

How to Install a Glock Backstrap

How to Field Strip and Clean a Glock 17 Pistol

Why do I need to clean my Glock magazines?

Semiautomatic pistol magazines cause the majority of malfunctions and this is why they need to be cared for as much as the gun itself. Unfortunately, a lot of gun owners tend to neglect their magazines (myself included) when cleaning their guns.

Since the magazine is solely responsible for making sure that a fresh round is available and in the correct position at all times, it makes sense that a flaw here can cause issues. A dirty magazine, binding magazine spring, corrosion or other damage will invariably cause a malfunction sooner or later.

How often should I clean my Glock magazines?

A good practice is to examine and clean each of your magazines on a regular basis. This is especially true if you have dropped any magazines on the ground, in the dirt or gravel or gotten them wet or muddy.

It would be a good idea to clean your magazines each time you clean your guns, that way you can be sure you will not forget. Just make it a part of your gun cleaning process.

If you take a training class such as Front Sight’s 4-Day Defensive Handgun Course, you will be dropping magazines to the ground while practicing malfunction drills. It is highly likely under these circumstances that gravel and dirt will get into your magazines. This would be a great time to disassemble and clean your magazines.

Glock Magazine Disassembly

Among all the magazines I own from other manufacturers, I will say that Glock magazines are the most difficult to disassemble. It took me a little while to figure out how they come apart. This is due to a pair of “locking tabs” that keep the Glock base plate securely fastened. The base plate is called a “floor plate” in the Glock User manual.

Base plates are on the bottom of the magazine and can vary in size and style.

Some base plates are flat while others have additional grip surfaces that effectively extend the length of the grip. These are popular and common on small pistols that do not already have a full sized grip. Regardless of Glock base plate type, they all attach to the magazine the same way.

See Upgraded Glock Base Plates

Once you see and understand how the magazine is constructed, it is easy to take apart for cleaning. You just need to have the correct tool to create the right amount of leverage to remove the Glock base plate. Once the base plate is removed, the rest of the parts pretty much fall out.

Glock magazines consist of 5 parts:

  • Magazine Tube
  • Base Plate (or Floor Plate)
  • Spring
  • Insert
  • Follower
Glock Magazine Parts: Base Plate, Insert, Spring, Tube and Follower
Glock Magazine Parts: Base Plate, Insert, Spring, Tube and Follower

How to Remove the Glock Base Plate & Take Apart the Magazine

**Please wear eye protection any time you are working with springs!! Parts may launch into your face & eyes!

Locate Hole in Base Plate
Locate Hole in Base Plate
Forcefully Insert Punch into the hole as shown
Forcefully Insert Punch into the hole as shown
The punch should be lined up as shown
The punch should be lined up as shown
Squeeze the sides with thumb & forefinger to help unlock the locking tabs
Squeeze the sides with thumb & forefinger to help unlock the locking tabs
While holding the magazine as shown, force the punch handle downward and base plate will pop free
While holding the magazine as shown, force the punch handle downward and base plate will pop free
Pull the punch almost all the way  out until only the very tip is still in the hole
Pull the punch almost all the way out until only the very tip is still in the hole and start sliding the base plate downward
Place a thumb over the end as you slide the base plate all the way off to prevent the spring form popping out
Place a thumb over the end as you slide the base plate all the way off to prevent the spring form popping out
Slowly move your thumb to allow the spring tension to be released
Slowly move your thumb to allow the spring tension to be released
Pull out the spring and follower
Pull out the spring and follower

Glock Magazine Cleaning Steps

Basically we are going to disassemble the magazine and then wipe down each piece with a cloth that is slightly dampened with a good quality CLP oil such as Original Gun Oil. This oil is safe to use on polymer guns and components such as your Glock and Glock magazine.

Take a slightly oil-dampened cloth and clean the inside of the magazine tube. If you fingers are too short or too large to get inside the tube, take a punch, pen or pencil and push the cloth through a few times. This will  get the entire interior of the magazine tube clean.

Dampen a cloth with Original Gun Oil
Slightly dampen a cloth with Original Gun Oil
Push the oil-dampened cloth through the magazine tube a few times
Push the oil-dampened cloth through the magazine tube a few times
Wipe down the spring, follower, base plate & insert
Wipe down the spring, follower, base plate & insert

Use the oil- dampened cloth to wipe down the length of the magazine spring and also wipe down the follower. Next, wipe clean the base plate and spring plate. Now you are ready to reassemble your Glock magazine.

Glock Magazine Reassembly

Insert the follower and spring into the magazine tube as shown, be sure the follower is oriented properly.

Follower goes into the magazine tube in this orientation
Follower goes into the magazine tube in this orientation
Should look like this
Should look like this

Next, place the bottom insert onto the spring and press the spring into the tube to be sure it is aligned correctly.

The insert goes on the bottom of the spring as shown
The insert goes on the bottom of the spring as shown
While holding the plate in place, start sliding the base plate onto the base of the magazine tube.
While holding the plate in place, start sliding the base plate onto the base of the magazine tube.
Once the base plate is in place, the insert pin will pop back into the hole
Once the base plate is in place, the insert pin will pop back into the hole

Glock Magazine Function Check

Now that the Glock Magazine is back together and the Glock base plate is properly installed, it is time to test the magazine. this is optional, but it will allow you to verify that the magazine and the gun are feeding, extracting and ejecting rounds properly.

Load the magazine with dummy rounds or snap caps
Load the magazine with dummy rounds or snap caps
Just load the magazine with 5 dummy rounds or snap caps.
Just load the magazine with 5 dummy rounds or snap caps.
Verify that your Glock pistol is completely unloaded. Insert the dummy round magazine into the gun and rack the slide to load the first dummy round into the chamber.
Verify that your Glock pistol is completely unloaded. Insert the dummy round magazine into the gun and rack the slide to load the first dummy round into the chamber.
Simulate firing the gun by briskly racking the slide 5 times. Each dummy round should eject and the slide should lock open after the last round has left the gun.
Simulate firing the gun by briskly racking the slide 5 times. Each dummy round should eject and the slide should lock open after the last round has left the gun.

You have now completed removing the Glock Base Plate, disassembling, cleaning, reassembling and testing a Glock magazine.

Glock Magazine Base Plate Removal, Disassembly & Cleaning Video

If you have comments or questions, please use the comment section below!

Leave a Comment