Snubby revolvers, like this Ruger LCR with XS sight and…

Snubby revolvers, like this Ruger LCR with XS sight and boot grip, are becoming increasingly popular with concealed carry permit holders and home owners. Holsters, speedloaders and Speed Strips make it a viable personal security piece.

While the revolver has been replaced by the autoloader as the preferred handgun for personal security and law enforcement, it is certainly far from dead. Many people prefer the simpler manual of arms and ease of use of the revolver. For example, many do not have the required strength to manipulate the spring-loaded slide assembly of the semi-auto and much prefer the simplicity of being able to pop open the cylinder of the revolver to load or unload. Others prefer the long, smooth, shot-to-shot consistent trigger stroke of a finely tuned double-action (DA) revolver over the confusing double-action/single-action (DA/SA) transition on some pistols or the “too-light, too-short” trigger of some striker-fired or SA semi-autos.

Whatever your preference, I think we can all agree that the one thing a pistol has over the revolver is ammunition capacity and ease of reloading—not that the revolver cannot be reloaded quickly. All it takes is a bit of practice and some concentration on the task at hand.

When I first entered law enforcement in the 1970’s, I was taught to load my Smith & Wesson Model 19 by hand from dump pouches, which were a molded “box” of leather that was held closed by either a snap or a patch of Velcro. Once the pouch flap was released, the pouch would hinge forward dumping the six contained rounds into the hand. It was then up to the shooter to try and feed the rounds to the index finger and thumb to insert them one at a time into the chambers of the revolver cylinder. It sounded like a great idea at the time, but back then we did not know about the loss of digital dexterity that accompanies armed conflict. Well, maybe we knew but did not understand the concept…

Pouches are available to hold speedloaders and speed strips. Some offer two and three rounds at a time, which make it easier on digital dexterity.

Regardless, better ways were created to reload a revolver quickly with the moon clip being used for revolvers that used pistol cartridges. Due to their lack of a protruding case rim, these rounds would fall into the cylinder and could not be extracted. Thus, the moon clip held them in place and made reloading a snap as all six rounds could be, literally, dropped in place. The speedloader was the next step towards rapid revolver loading and proved to be the best solution for revolver ammunition. These came in a number of variations including molded rubber, push to release and twist to release all of which work well with the major difference being what method of release the end user preferred.

The most recent introduction, and it is by no means a new concept, is the Speed Strip, which is a molded strip of rubber that holds five/six rounds in a straight line versus the round configuration of the speedloader. The chief advantage of the Speed Strip is it will fit any revolver as long as the caliber is correct. In addition the Speed Strip is flat, allowing it to be carried discreetly in a pocket or pouch including the aforementioned dump pouch. The chief disadvantage of the Speed Strip is that only two rounds at a time can be loaded versus the five or six of the speedloader. Like anything else, there are advantages and disadvantages to the various loading devices.

Load Comments
  • this company makes exellent speed loaders
    i bought the rangeblock kit w/ 2 xtra loaders 4 my LCR 357
    the work GREAT !!!
    well worth the $$ !!

  • Moon clips are the way to go..My Smith and Wesson Pro Model 640 came with 3 and a cylinder already milled for their use. Fast and smooth.