Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Guns: Speedloaders & Speed Strips

My parents came up and visited me this weekend. While tidying up my room, my Mom noticed some "bullets" on my nightstand. She was referring to an HKS model 36 speedloader, a device designed to load all five cylinders of a S&W J-frame revolver at once. It's a fairly simply gadget, and while the spring holding the ball detent in place isn't the strongest thing in the world, it's proven to be very reliable. You simply place the rounds in, and twist the knob to lock them in place. To load, untwist the knob (with the speedloader on the cylinder, of course) and the rounds will drop into the chambers.

This is the Safariland Comp-1 speedloader. They're a bit less bulky than the HKS system, since there's no knob to twist - you simply shove the speedloader against the extractor star of the cylinder and the springloaded mechanism drops all the rounds into the chambers. I prefer this type of speedloader, as it's (slightly) faster, but either works fine. You can slip either of these speedloaders into a decent size pocket, but it's better to carry them in a belt pouch of some sort so they don't shift around.

I also have some Bianchi speed strips. These are excellent when you need something that can lay flat (perhaps in a tight jeans pocket, for example). You can load two at a time with these things fairly quickly. They're great for stashing in odd places - a couple in your glove box, a couple in your bathroom - who knows when you might need the extra ammo?

There are some other, more esoteric methods of carrying spare revolver ammo. You could go old-school, with a bandolier, but I'm not sure that would be very concealable. Actually, even stuffing spare rounds in a zippered pocket would work in a pinch - practice loading two at a time and it's faster than you might think. The best reload, of course, might be the "New York Reload" - you can literally carry two Airweights that weigh the same as one full-size 1911 (though I might still take the 1911 ;-) ).


At 11:18 PM, Blogger Mulliga said...

Whoops - forgot about moonclips. But most revolvers designed for rimmed cartridges can't use them without being adapted for it. For all the pistol-cartridge revolvers out there, though, they are a very fast way to reload.


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