Volquartsen Magazine Follower Button Upgrade

Volquartsen’s Magazine Follower Buttons for Ruger pistols are one of my favorite upgrades. They’re inexpensive, easy to install, and can make a noticeable difference in reliability. It’s nice to know that performance upgrades for your Ruger Mark series pistols don’t have to be expensive. My 10-pack of them was a little over $20, and I think it took about 20 minutes to upgrade ten magazines.

What are they?

On your magazine, you’ve got a little button which you press with your thumb, to load rounds. The factory ones work well enough, but like many Ruger parts, could be improved upon. Volquartsen makes a button that’s had a little more thought put into it. The button face is also knurled, which can make it easier to use. But that’s not why I like them. Each one is CNC-machined, and case hardened. That ensures smoother operation, and longer wear.

In the image below, you can see the difference between the Ruger button, and the Volquartsen. That gap seems to be the key. Ideally, the button should fit into the follower, and ride up and down with minimal contact to the magazine body. So Volquartsen uses a slightly bigger gap, but also better machining on the surfaces. This makes them much smoother. Sure, you could polish the factory ones, and many people do. Or for about $2.30 each, replace them with the much better Volquartsen ones.

(L) Factory Ruger magazine button (R) Volquartsen
(L) Factory Ruger magazine button (R) Volquartsen


Since this involves springs under tension, I do recommend eye protection. There might be a tool to make magazine servicing easier, but I’ve never used one. I just press a small punch into the hole in the base, and slide the base off. Then slide the follower down to the hole in the magazine body. Remove the old button, drop in the new one, and make sure the magazine body is in the groove in the button. Carefully compress the spring back in the body, press it down with the base, and slide the base back into place. I’m sure there are videos online showing how easy it is, but if you’ve serviced a magazine, you can do this.

Ruger Mark magazine, disassembled. OEM and Volquartsen buttons shown
Ruger Mark magazine, disassembled. OEM and Volquartsen buttons shown.


There’s no magic here. Your pistol won’t suddenly shoot 1/2 MOA. But you may end up with a more reliable pistol. With the factory buttons, you might notice a bit more resistance, which can lead to feeding issues. It may not be a concern when slow-firing, but for competition, where speed counts, it can make a difference. And any performance edge is worth looking into. If you’re not worried about that, the larger, knurled button face still makes feeding easier. Of course, if you’re interested in loading magazines quickly, without tearing up your thumb, check out the McFadden Ultimate Cliploader.

Magazine follower buttons installed - (L) Factory Ruger magazine button (R) Volquartsen
Magazine follower buttons installed – (L) Factory Ruger magazine button (R) Volquartsen


One of the reasons Ruger’s Mark pistols are so popular is that they are easy to modify. We all want to improve performance and reliability, and make our firearms “our own”. As mentioned, it doesn’t always cost a lot to make your pistol a bit better. And that’s what I like about this product. For about the same price as a carton of inexpensive bulk ammo, it checks all those boxes. I’ve got a dozen magazines for my three MK IV 22/45 pistols, and will probably end up with 20 or more. And every one of them will get this upgrade.

To order your own, or see what else Volquartsen offers, visit Volquartsen.com.


*The Volquartsen Magazine Follower Buttons featured in this article were purchased by the author at full retail.

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