A little while ago there was a video about how to prepare your Stinger II speedloaders so they work when you need them to. This post follows with the next topic: how to actually reload your AR-6 Stinger II magazine with a speedloader.
First there’s one important point to remember: with the Stinger II repeating pistol crossbow it is crucial to always know how many arrows are left in the magazine. If you don’t, you risk cocking your Stinger II on an empty magazine and that can result in a dry fire. Dry fires can damage your crossbow, potentially injure you or others and it will invalidate the warranty.
The next issue to consider is if you’re just having fun or are the stakes much higher? In a high stress situation using a speedloader has a tactical advantage as you spend the least amount of time vulnerable as possible. If you’re just target shooting, the use of a speedloader becomes a matter of convenience rather than necessity.
Either way, knowing how many shots you have fired remains important because you cannot use a full speedloader if you have 2 or more arrows still in the magazine: there will not be space for the additional 5 arrows. In fact, Steambow recommends loading your magazine when the last arrow remains.
This way it means that the next 5 will fit properly but also that you have that one final shot should the need arise. Reload your magazine when it’s totally empty and you have nothing. Furthermore, the last remaining arrow also acts as a guide for those you’re putting in, ensuring a smooth insertion, and avoiding the possibility of the lead arrow head getting snagged under the string if you insert at an too steep angle.
In fact, the angle at which the arrows go in is important. An approach angle of about 30 degrees works. Try to insert the arrows so that the tip and shaft of the top arrow just brush under the hinge of the magazine lid. At that point the lower edge of the speedloader already clears the top edge of the magazine and the speedloader will drop into place within the magazine. This approach also avoids tips nagging on the string if you do load on an empty magazine.
Once the speedloader has dropped in, grab the Stinger II with your fingers under the frame and place your thumb over the magazine at roughly the midpoint of the magazine opening. That will position your thumb over the arrows at the point where the shafts are no longer in the speedloader. Make sure your grip is firm.
With the other hand, grab either the finger loop or coloured cord (depending which model of speedloader you have) and pull straight up, firmly and sharply. This will pull the speedloader off the vanes of the arrows, leaving the 5 new arrows neatly stacked in the magazine.
Now close the magazine lid. Cock the crossbow to be ready to fire again. For a high-stress situation, don’t worry about the speedloader: just drop it and focus on your target and you should practice with your speedloader accordingly.
Steambow recommends practicing again and again so that the motion becomes automatic and can be performed with the least amount of time and smallest chance of error. Over all, reloading can be done in as few as 5 seconds. And sometimes every second counts.