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Discussion Starter #1
This is a "true black" magazine, produced by Izhmash and identified by the [4] stamp next to the front locking lug. As you likely have immediately noticed however, this magazine isn't actually truly black. There is notable discolouration within the centre of the magazine body, not dissimilar to older [M] stamped magazines produced in the 1980s that people typically refer to as "plum". I have never before seen one of these [4] stamped magazines that is discoloured like this, and I have no explanation as to why it is, given that these magazines use a more modern polymer composition and are still currently produced by Kalashnikov Concern.

OddPlum.jpg
 

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So basically you have a plum mag with the later stamp. The middle has more colour, because the upper and lower ends are always painted black. I have encountered some of these too. I think they are most likely refurbished or forgotten in the warehouse and issued later or overlaped production . That would explain the later stamp.
 

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i don't think these aren't painted. i think this is the effect that metal inserts create on the polymer. it's especially noticeable in the lighter colored plums. i had bought brand new in the wrapper mags that had that and those had not been used or painted or touched from the day they were manufactured and packed away. whatever preservation they do to the metal inserts that are molded into the mag body - i think that's what causing polymer darkening

also, russian true-blacks typically have mat texture not semi-gloss like plums do. to my knowledge only bulgy blacks and came as semi-gloss and maybe polymer early tantals, but not 100% on tantals though
 

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I used the canned stripper from Lowes. Forgot the brand, but the labels always tell you what it's safe to use on.
 

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also, russian true-blacks typically have mat texture not semi-gloss like plums do. to my knowledge only bulgy blacks and came as semi-gloss and maybe polymer early tantals, but not 100% on tantals though
Here are some shiny black. Up shiny vs. Down matte. I know some people say they dont exist. Tested them. Not transparent for light at all, so no dark plum.

299498
 

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A fair amount of my circle 10s are like that as well. My favorites of all my mags for sure.
 

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Stamps aren't a sure way to differentiate between plum and TB mags. Only the light test knows for sure. Also, while some mags are obviously more reflective than others, "shiny" and "matte" was never a Soviet nomenclature, it's something basically made up by Americans. It seems clear to me that the Soviets did evolve their blend of plastic over time, especially at Izhmash...and that it got darker and more matte over time as a result until they made the big change to the polymer blend that we call true black. What isn't clear is what those changes in sheen were the result of. Were the molds finished differently? Changes in the plastic blend? If so, were the changes to make it cheaper? Stronger? Less reflective? Was it a change in the finishing process after the molding process took place? I'm not sure anyone has documented this, so it's so just speculation at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Here are some additional with the late stamp. You can clearly see the paint.
Interesting, I learn something new every day it seems. I have many of these magazines and as I said, the one in my post is the only one I have ever seen before that is discoloured. All others I have are completely black.
 

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Hey guys new here, I have wondered if its just the Izzy's that go from black/plum/black compared to Tulas that are uniform throughout besides the spots that they go over from the factory at the top of mags. And if anyone knows if theirs a ban specifically on Izzy stamped mags from current importation?
 

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i don't think these aren't painted. i think this is the effect that metal inserts create on the polymer. it's especially noticeable in the lighter colored plums. i had bought brand new in the wrapper mags that had that and those had not been used or painted or touched from the day they were manufactured and packed away. whatever preservation they do to the metal inserts that are molded into the mag body - i think that's what causing polymer darkening
The only problem with this theory is that there is a 'strap' of steel running down the front of the mag from the front lug down to about rib 6 or so, and the polymer there is not darker as a result in this sample. Most Soviet plums and TBs that I have seen have been sprayed at the fractory, to some degree, at the top and bottom to protect the protruding steel bits. As is usually the case with commie QC, how much of the mag is sprayed varies quite a bit.

What OP needs to do is take that bad boy apart and put a crazy bright flashlight up against it to see how much, if any, light passes through it. If it is a legit "TB" polymer mag, no light will pass through it. Based on appearance and mold # though, I'm guessing light will go right through and it'll glow a nice red like plums do.
 
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