One of the things I dislike about tube fed 22s is loading the tube. It is an awkward and slow process. In fact, one of the reasons I often grab one of my Ruger 10/22s or Nylon 77s when I go shooting is because I can fill the detachable magazines ahead of time and simply swap them easily at the range.
We probably have all seen the tube loader gizmo that has been on the market for some time. I’ve seen them advertised over the years but never saw one in real life. Frankly, when all I had was a single tube fed Marlin 60, it just didn’t seem worth the effort or expense to seek one of these devices out.
On the other hand, getting into Remington Nylon 66s rekindled my interest in finding something that would make loading faster and easier at the range. That in turn would rekindle my interest in shooting the 66 more and the 10/22 less. With that in mind I went searching for a loader. The result was that I only found one tube loader device and it was called the ‘Spee-D-Loader’ made by MTP Enterprises in Middletown, Ohio.
This plastic device is advertised to hold 120 rounds of 22 long rifles, more 22 shorts
fewer 22 magnums and even .17 HMR caliber rimfires). It has multiple chambers and caps at both ends. With the idea of a tube loader in mind, I put the Spee-D-Loader on my Christmas list.
Much to my delight, I found a Spee-D-Loader under the tree Christmas morning. The torn away wrapping revealed a sturdy cardboard tube containing my loader. Opening the cardboard tube revealed a long multi-chambered plastic device with black plastic caps on each end and a sheet of instructions.
One of the caps has what could only be called a pouring spout on it, the other simply black plastic cap. Lifting the cap reveals that the spout and cap are attached to each other by a long spring. The spring tension keeps the caps in place and the rounds from spilling out. It also allows the spout to be rotated to line up with separate chambers in the tube. There are eight chambers, each holding up to 15 rounds each. Total capacity is 120 LRs (more or less as noted above).
Filling the Spee-D-Loader is easy. One simply lines the spout up with one of the chambers. The spout is indexed to stay in place over a chamber for pouring or between a chamber to keep the rounds from spilling out. To fill, align the spout and a chamber, place the rounds into the chamber.
If you have a butt loading rifle like the Nylon 66, you will need to place the rounds rim first so they will come out bullet first into the 66’s tube magazine. A tube magazine under the barrel requires the opposite. Place the rounds bullet first so when inverted the rounds will slide into the under barrel tube rim first.
Loading a rifle with the Spee-D-Loader is as easy as holding up the loader and letting gravity do the work. The rounds simply pour into the magazine tube.
Of course with the Nylon 66 you have to invert the rifle, take out the magazine tube and pour the rounds from the loader in. The Marlin required aligning the loader with the tube and then raising both together to pour in the rounds. I found laying the rifle across my lap helped align the loader and magazine tube. It was
then easy to stand both up. Viola! The tube is loaded. Reinsert the tube magazine and you are ready to shoot.
The good and the bad
The Good- Works as designed and is quite speedy. I was able to load 14 rounds into my Nylon 66 in 3 seconds with the Spee-D-Loader. It took me about 30 seconds by hand. It is simple to use. It is made of a slightly milky colored plastic that allows one to see the rounds inside the loader. It is made in the US.
The Bad- OK, not really bad but… Each loader chamber holds 15 while my Nylon 66 holds 14 rounds and my Marlin 60 holds 18. Obviously it doesn’t hold a full load for the Marlin, which is annoying. While it makes it easier to load your rifle, you still have to load the loader chambers, which is tedious. I can’t imagine that you would carry this thing while hunting or in combat (hoards of attacking alien squirrels?) but it does rattle with all those rounds in it. There is no way to carry it easily.
Other: A trip to the manufacturer’s website shows that a carrying bag is now available as an option. This would certainly make it handier to carry to the range. A clip or strap on the loader would have been one of my recommendations. In fact I was planning on wrapping some para-cord around my loader to fashion a sling. The website also indicates that they are coming out with a 17 round version and a short version as well. If you have rifles that have comparable ammo capacities, those versions would be handy.
Overall, I think the Spee-D-Loader is a handy device for those of us who love and shoot tube fed rifles such as the Nylon 66. A 66 and a Spee-D-Loader would make you ready for any type of range action.
Where does one find the Spee-D-Loader? An online search found them at various places including www.sportsmansguide.com and www.cabelas.com. I also found it available directly from MTP Enterprises at www.spee-d-loader.net
If you decide to buy one please contact the manufacturer and tell them that you saw this review at www.nylonrifles.com.