While revolvers may be considered obsolete by some, they’re also enjoying a resurgence in popularity. That also means that more and more people are buying support gear for their guns, including speed loaders. Let’s take a look at 5 reasons why if you’re going to carry a revolver you need speed loaders.
What is a Speed Loader Anyway?
A speed loader (sometimes spelled as one word, speedloader) is a device that holds cartridges for a revolver in the same pattern as the charge holes in the revolver’s cylinder. It’s used to reload the gun much quicker than is possible hand-loading single cartridges.
Benefits of Speed Loaders
- Saves time: A speed loader allows you to reload your revolver quickly and efficiently, which is particularly useful in a high-pressure situation where time is of the essence.
- Simpler: Reloading with a speed loader is much faster than reloading individual cartridges by hand. This means that you spend less time looking at your cylinder during the reload, allowing you to get your eyes back on target much faster.
- Reduces stress: When you're under stress, your fine motor skills can suffer. Using a speed loader can help reduce the stress of reloading, allowing you to focus on the task at hand.
- Increases safety: Fumbling with individual cartridges can be dangerous, particularly if you're in a high-pressure situation. A speed loader can help you reload your revolver quickly and safely, reducing the risk of an accidental discharge.
- Convenient: Speed Loaders also make your defensive practice go smoother. If you arrive at the range with several pre-loaded speed loaders, you can focus on practice and less on stuffing rounds in your gun.
Overall, a speed loader can help you reload your revolver quickly and efficiently, while also improving consistency, reducing stress, increasing safety, and offering convenience.
Types of Speed Loaders
There are broadly two types of revolver speed loaders. The first, and most common type are “twist knob” loaders, like the HKS or 5-Star loaders. To operate this type of loader, insert the cartridges into the loader, the twist the knob to lock them into place. To release, you’ll put the rounds in the charge holes of the revolver’s cylinder, then while holding the cylinder in place, twist the knob to release the rounds.
The other type of speed loader style is the direct injection style, best exemplified by the Safariland loaders. Unlike the twist-knob release, direct injection loaders release the cartridges by pressing the center of the loader on the revolver’s cylinder, allowing them to drop free. This allows the loader to be used with either hand and without stabilizing the cylinder.
Regardless of which model of speed loader you select, it’s important to get regular practice in with them. Use snap caps to practice your reloads until you’ve got them perfected!