Modifying Magazine Capacity: SIG P365, S&W Shield, AR-15s/AK-47s and More!

Experienced shooters know that magazines are integral parts of most semi-automatic firearms, especially handguns. That’s why, whenever a failure to feed is encountered, the magazine is often the first suspected component. It is necessary to use quality magazines if you want your firearm to operate reliably.

Aftermarket magazines have long been used for three reasons. The first is to improve reliability. The second reason is to increase capacity. The third reason is to limit capacity to comply with state laws. The third reason happens in states with legislatures who are clueless about how little a gun’s capacity influences an insane or demented person’s ability to wreak havoc with a handgun or rifle.

Assortment of magazine extension kits from XTech Products
XTech Tactical sent the author an assortment of products. Its products run the gamut from those designed to add or decrease the number of rounds to products designed to improve the grip area on SIGs, S&Ws, and VP9s.

XTech Tactical is a company founded by firearms enthusiasts in 2013 to develop accessories for ARs, AKs, and popular pistols. They are a team of experienced product development, design, and quality control professionals who have taken hundreds of products from concept through production. Its products are designed to fulfill a particular need as seen by their experience as shooters.

I find it interesting how a word with multiple definitions can be further complicated by being called something it’s not. From the Oxford Dictionary we get three definitions for the word “magazine:”

  1. A periodical publication containing articles and illustrations, typically covering a particular subject or area of interest.
  2. A chamber for holding a supply of cartridges to be fed automatically to the breech of a gun.
  3. A store for arms, ammunition, explosives, and provisions for use in military operations.

This article is about the second definition which for some reason has been almost universally called a “clip” among shooters. A clip is something else entirely. A clip is a device that is used to combine multiple rounds of ammunition together as a unit for insertion into the magazine or cylinder of a firearm. Magazines hold cartridges internally, while clips are external devices.


To introduce me to its products, XTech Tactical sent me some sample magazines and magazine extension kits for my SIG Sauer P365, S&W Shield, and S&W M&P 9. That way, I could form independent opinions for the evaluation. The extension kits are a great money-saving idea. Instead of paying full price for a new magazine, the kits contain a spring, baseplate, and extension. For most kits, you’ll use the body and follower from your existing magazine.

two S&W handguns wearing XTech Tactical Extensions
Here are two of the author’s S&W handguns wearing a XTech Tactical Extension. The 5-round M&P extension (top) works with original M&Ps as well as the 2.0 models. The 2-round Shield addition (bottom) provides a 10-round solution that’s legal in all 50 states.

Unique to them (as far as I can tell), is the concept of converting a 7- or 8-round magazine to a 10-round magazine — that will work in any state. They sent me “Commiefornia” kits for my 9mm SIG P365 and S&W Shield. What a great concept, and it’s easy to make the conversion. My understanding is that similar kits for other popular guns, such as the Springfield Hellcat, are in the works. It must be a relief to shooters in those states that limit magazines to 10 rounds.

From the care package XTech Tactical sent me, I have been able to upgrade magazines as follows. For my SIG P365, I converted a 10-round magazine to a 13-round magazine, which added a pinky extension that also offers an improved grip and control without going to the XL frame. The SIG P365 extension kit includes a custom-engineered spring and an easy loading follower. This kit does not work with the X, XL, or Macro frames.

The second kit I took advantage of was the one to convert the 7-round magazine for my S&W Shield 2.0 to a 9-round magazine. This same kit will also convert a Shield 8-round magazine to a 10-round magazine. This is a great option for Shields that is legal in all 50 states. It also adds more length to the grip, which results in a more secure grip on the gun.

custom engineered spring, inner extension housing, and outer extension housing from XTech
Each kit has well-engineered parts necessary for a particular model gun. For example, this M&P kit has a custom engineered spring, inner extension housing, and outer extension housing.

The third product I used was a complete magazine that holds five more rounds than the stock 17-round magazine for my M&P 2.0. XTech offers this option both as a full magazine or as an expansion kit.

I have fired my guns with each of these products, and they have worked perfectly. I appreciate the options that allow you to choose to purchase a completely new magazine or an expansion kit for an existing magazine to save money.

AKs and ARs

XTech Tactical makes another interesting product for AKs, ARs, and several pistols called the Free State Adapter Kit. The AK and AR versions increase the round count from 10 to 30. The Free State Adapter Kit is ideal for states that have removed (usually because the courts forced them to) capacity restrictions. Similar kits are available for select pistols such as the SIG P365 and H&K VP9. They have kits for the ARs and AK-47s that go the other way, too.

XTech plum furniture with Bolt Hold Open (BHSI) 30-round magazine
Want to replace your wooden AK stock with an attractive composite stock with butt storage. Here’s one option with Plum furniture. Ships with one Bolt Hold Open (BHSI) 30-round magazine.

A big part of XTech’s business is related to the AR/AK world. In addition to 30-round magazines and 10-round magazines, XTech Tactical offers some interesting furniture for AKs. If you have an AK-47 that needs some cosmetic upgrading, check out XTech’s AK Plum furniture or its AK Bakelite furniture. It’s all made-in-America stuff, designed and built by folks that cherish our 2nd Amendment freedoms and are doing their part to keep us shooting some of our favorite guns.

Do you live in a free state? Which XTech product would you choose? A Free State kit for the SIG P365, M&P Shield, HK VP9, AR or AK? Share your answers in the Comment section.

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