One of the most reliable handguns to carry concealed is a snubnose revolver and in 2011 these guns have come a long way from the homebrew, full-sized revolvers with the barrel sawed off of years past. Today, hammerless revolvers like the Smith & Wesson Bodyguard, M&P 340 and the Ruger LCR are not only tailored for concealment because there is no external hammer to snag on clothes, they’re simple because they are double action-only.
Yes, for either the beginner or the long-time shooter, the revolver is a great carry option, but, as many of our Guns.com readers know well, there is a catch.
Though there is a limited chance of a malfunction, revolver shooters often find themselves equipped with considerably fewer rounds than those who opt for a semi-automatic pistol. In a gunfight, it’s better to have more rounds. Agreed?
Not too long ago I spoke with a friend and police officer who was recently involved in a shooting. One of his greatest fears, he said, was running out of ammo.
With a revolver, carrying loose rounds in your pocket is not the best option. Reloads need to be quick but carrying one or more bulky, circular speed loaders isn’t really practical when carrying concealed. Fortunately, there’s another option: the Quickstrip.
The Quickstrip is similar to a strip clip, but the former was specifically designed for revolvers. The size of Quickstrip should be larger (or capable of holding more) than the size of the cylinder. This way there’s more plastic material for the shooter to hold and handle. Under stress, holding a small amount of material and manipulating it quickly can will be very difficult. Here’s a video of how they work:
Now here’s five tips on how to use them effectively:
1. Carry Quickstrips on Your Strong Side
Whether you’re right-handed or left-handed, you always want to reload with your dominate hand. You have much more dexterity with your “strong” side (which is why it would be wise to put your Quickstrip and ammo in your strong side pocket).
2. Practice in the Dark
A good way to get slick with Quickstrips is to practice reloading in the dark or with your eyes closed. Keep in mind all the proper safety measures, of course, and using dummy rounds is definitely the safest bet (and recommended by Guns.com). Not closing the cylinder will also keep it safe. And, of course, keep your finger straight and off the trigger and the muzzle pointed in a safe direction.
Training this way is important to tactical applications as well because you want to keep your eyes up and looking for threats in any dangerous encounter to ensure they don’t move, take more ground or get the jump on you. If you become a master at reloading without looking down, great. However, under stress, glancing down briefly could help your chances of a speedy reload tremendously.
3. Reload against a Shot Clock
Another worthwhile training tool for Quickstrips (and a fun one, too) is using a shot timer the next time you’re on the range. Shoot, reload and shoot again, then try to beat the high score. Keep in mind that invoking stress during this type of training will help in real world confrontations.
4. Train on the Move
Seek cover when reloading. If there’s no cover, move. It’s harder to hit a moving target. So move! With those two things in mind (seeking cover and moving), try reloading on the move, as well as running to cover to reload. Practice, practice, practice. Practice makes perfect.
5. Don’t Overload your Quickstrip
Some readers may think that loading an 8-round Quickstrip to the max would be better because more ammo is mo’ betta, right? Wrong. It’s more difficult to load ammo that’s nearly touching each other on the Quickstrip. If you want more ammo, get another Quickstrip to put in your strong side pocket.
If you’re looking to buy some Quickstrips, Brownells is always a safe bet. Until next time, continue to hone your skills and keep adding to your tactical toolbox.