Speed loaders are the superior revolver reloading device. They’re faster and easier to use. No they aren’t…speed strips are. They’re easier to carry and allow you to top off your wheel gun.
That’s what I imagine the comments section of articles on revolvers would look like any time between the 1970s and 1992 (if there were comment sections back then), from the advent of the Speed Strip by Bianchi to the takeover by Wonder Nines.
That argument doesn’t seem to pop up much today for obvious reasons, but if it did, something like the Zeta6 K-Clip might be the ultimate compromise.
Who the hell is Zeta6? That’s a solid question. Until recently, I had never heard of the company and sadly, companies doing great things are often overlooked unless it has to do with AR rifles or GLOCK series pistols. Zeta6 is about revolutionizing the revolver market with various speed-loading devices for your favorite wheel gun. Zeta6 makes a lot of cool stuff that shows that the revolver industry hung its hat at the door too soon.
The World of Zeta6
They make a variety of speed strips for very specific purposes, and among those speed strips are the J-Clip and the K-Clip. I hate calling them speed strips, but they aren’t quite speed loaders. Instead, Zeta6 delivers a speed loader made in the form of a speed strip. The J-Clip is for J-frames, and to the surprise of no one, the K-Clip is for K-frames. The device is made from the same polymer and rubber combination that makes Speed Strips.
The K-Clip is strong but malleable. It holds six rounds of .38 Special or .357 Magnum, which are retained via the slight overhand over the cartridge’s rim. Retention is like that of any other high-quality speed loader. The difference is that the rounds aren’t organized into a straight line like a Speed Strip, but instead into a circle, much like a speed loader.
The K-Clip combines the qualities of a speed loader with the qualities of a Speed Strip. It’s not as small or flat as a Speed Strip but it’s less bulky than a normal speed loader. K-Clips don’t have the height of a speed loader, so they’re smaller and less bulky while still allowing you to rapidly load six rounds of ammo into your K-frame revolver.
Like a normal Speed Strip, the K-Clip lets you top your revolver off with a couple of rounds if you need to. If you’ve fired two rounds and just want to replace those, you can do that with the K-Clip. You don’t have to load all six rounds at once. If you load via the sides of the K-Clip, you can load a round or two at a time.
Putting the K-Clip In Action
The K-Clip seemed promising, but does it offer all that and a bag of chips? I’ve only recently dived seriously into the world of revolvers, and the Taurus 856 Defender has been my North Star. It’s not quite a K-Frame, but it’s a six-shot option, and the J-Clip only has a five-round capacity. That didn’t prove to be an issue, and I quickly learned one of the benefits of the K-Clip.
The compact frame 856 Defender can make using speed loaders a bit interesting. The cylinder sits tight to the frame, meaning the grips can get in the way. It’s not also a pain, but the cylinder needs to be rotated now and then. The K-Clip’s soft rubber design and lack of bulk make it easy to press past the grip and load the cylinder. It’s certainly easier than using an HKS Speed Loader.
Slapping Them In
The K-Clip series features this big handle tab on the side. That makes it easy to slam the six rounds into the cylinder and pull at the handle to release the rounds. Unlike a speed loader, you don’t press or twist anything to release the rounds. It’s more akin to a speed strip where you peel away, and the rounds plop into the cylinders.
The K-Clip reloads very quickly. The Safariland push-to-release speedloaders are likely a bit faster since you press and release the carrier. With the K-Clip, you have to pull away deliberately, which can take a fraction of a second longer than with a Safariland Comp. During my first full reload practices, the K-Clip was tight and didn’t break away cleanly.
It took a few practice attempts before it “broke in” and began releasing the rounds without issue. When I combined the K-Clip with my traditional revolver reload drills, I found it super easy to use. Slap it in, peel it away, drop the K-Clip, close the cylinder, and pull the trigger.
Carrying the K-Clip takes the same type of pouch in which you’d carry a speedloader. It’s not too big or crazy…plenty of companies make speedloader pouches. It’s unlikely they’d even be recognized as speed loader pouches in the modern era.
The Zeta6 K-Clip and You
If you’re getting into the world of revolvers, check out the Zeta6 website. They have lots of interesting speedloading designs for your various defensive revolvers. The K-Clip is one of many and is becoming my favorite. Once I have a good holster for my 856 Defender, I plan to carry one extra K-Clip. Until then, I need to get my reload times down.
Caliber: .38 SPC/.357 Magnum
Capacity: 6 rounds
Fit – Various S&W, Colt, Ruger, Taurus, Kimber, Dan Wesson, Rossi, Rock Island Armory, and Webley Revolvers
MSRP: $13.95 (for two K-Clips)
Ratings (Out of Five Stars)
Ergonomics * * * * *
You won’t have any issues using the K-Clips. The big handles make them easy to grab and get into action. They work well with compact revolvers and tight-fitting cylinders and grips.
Ease of Use * * * *
Sure, the Safariland Comp reloader is slightly quicker, but it’s also much bigger. The Zeta6 K-Clips aren’t as fast but, they’re still easy to use…and they allow for partial reloads.
Carryability * * * *
Not as good as a speed strip, but better than your average speed loader. They’re fairly small and very lightweight. You won’t feel bulky carrying them.
Overall * * * * ½
They’re inexpensive, compact and let you load full cylinders or do partial reloads. If you shoot revolvers, you should have a couple of them.