I’ve been exploring the world of revolvers. I’m so used to semi-autos that I found myself getting a little bored of them. With that in mind, I’ve discovered revolvers are a lot like shotguns. Reloading is a skill that’s needed to keep the gun running. I’ve been exploring speed loaders and speed strips, and recently run across something that combines both ideas. The J-Pack from Zeta6 promises you a quick reload in an unconventional way.
The J-Pack and J-Frames
I’ve been learning that the smaller a revolver is the tougher it is to reload. The S&W Bodyguard .38 is a pretty good example of your standard concealed-carry revolver. J-frames and similar designs have cylinders that sit tight to the frame, which often makes using Speed Loaders tough if not impossible. Because the cylinder sits so tight to the frame, things like the grip can get in the way of speed loaders.
Ejection can be tricky and the grips can prevent casings from cleanly falling out of the gun, as can short ejection rods. It’s all just tricky. Speed strips often make more sense for J-frames because speed loaders can be such a hassle. That’s where the J-Pack comes into play. The J-Pack holds five rounds in a circular design much like a speed loader.
The J-Pack is also made from a malleable material that flexes and gives. There isn’t a turning or pressing mechanism to release the rounds like a normal speed loader. The idea is that you peel the speed loader away from the cylinder and rims find their way out of the J-Pack and into the cylinder. That’s the idea, but does it work?
Throwing the J-Pack Into Action
Loading rounds into the J-Pack isn’t tough to do. It loads just like a Speed Strip with a little movement to get the rimmed cases into the flexible slots. The cases are held very well and never once in all of my training and shooting did a round ever slip from the J-Pack. This includes pocket-carrying the J-Pack and running to and fro while training.
The J-Pack does have a nice-sized handle that’s ribbed and easily gripped to use the J-Pack into your J-frame revolver. The handle also makes it easy to pull the device away from the cylinder and free the cartridges. In practice, the little handle was handy for lack of a better term. Speed strips have an interesting issue in trying to balance space and concealment with a good handle for grabbing the device. This isn’t a problem with the J-Pack.
Unlike a lot of speed loaders, the J-Pack has no problems loading into the cylinder of the revolver. It drops right in with five rounds in the cylinder without a problem. This makes reloading the Bodyguard extremely easy and that means it will work with most J-frame designs. In practice, it provided a very intuitive reload that allowed me to reload five rounds much faster than I ever could with a speed strip.
Peeling away the J-Pack was a little tricky at first. It turned out it needed a few practice runs to loosen up just a bit. Once it was broken in the device worked quickly and easily. Drop the rounds in, peel the J-Pack away, and drop it as you close the cylinder.
Speed Loaders are kind of bulky, making them a little tougher to tote. Speed strips are narrow and easier to carry and conceal. The J-Pack isn’t as slim and trim as a speed strip but is much smaller and trimmer than your typical speed loader. This makes it easier to carry. Plus, there are no worries about twisting or pressing a device on the speed loader to release the rounds. Just peel it away and close the cylinder.
Admittedly, the J-Pack isn’t as fast as a press-to-release speed loader. It’s still pretty dang fast, and guess what?
It works without a problem in a J-Frame. It adds some awesome reloading potential, and it’s convenient to carry alongside your concealed five shooter. Best of all, these devices cost a mere 15 bucks and you get two of them! Check them out here!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Travis Pike is a former Marine Machine gunner who served with 2nd Bn 2nd Marines for 5 years. He deployed in 2009 to Afghanistan and again in 2011 with the 22nd MEU(SOC) during a record-setting 11 months at sea. Travis has trained with the Romanian Army, the Spanish Marines, the Emirate Marines, and the Afghan National Army.
He serves as an NRA-certified pistol instructor and pursues a variety of firearms-based hobbies.
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