Check out the Diabolo Speedloader

by B.B. Pelletier

I’m surprised I’ve never reported on the Diabolo Speedloader. As many articles as I’ve written about Umarex pellet pistols, I’ve only mentioned it three times, and never done an in-depth look until today.

What IS a speedloader?
A speedloader is a tool to help you load the circular clips for certain repeating airguns. It organizes pellets and starts them into the clips. Another part of the speedloader pushes them all the way in – and you’re done.

How it works
Step one is to place seven empty clips on the base of the speedloader, with their ratchet side up. Next, place the loading plate over the base. Two pins will align the plate so the holes in it are in line with the holes in the empty clips. Step three places a retaining ring around the loading plate, so pellets will remain on the plate when they are poured on it. Now, the speedloader is ready for pellets.


The loader base has short pins to align the clips.


The loading plate fits on top of the base, over two plastic pins.


A retaining ring slips over the loading plate.


Pour pellets onto the speedloader. Notice that some have already aligned with holes! The retaining ring keeps the pellets from falling off the loading plate as you move them around.


I moved the pellets with my finger until all fall into a hole. I removed the retaining ring, which created two wide notches, and pushed the leftover pellets back into the tin. You’re ready to push the pellets into the clips with the pusher plate. Some pellets are higher than others because there are small variations.

Pushing the pellets into the clips
The pusher plate has pins that push all the pellets to the same depth. The base plate has very short pins to keep the pellets from going too far. Look at this photo of a Crosman 1077 speedloader to see the relationship of the parts.


This photo of the parts of a 1077/NightStalker speedloader illustrates how they work together.

Don’t go for a speed record
The first few times I used a speedloader, I botched it pretty bad. I realized the instructions said it takes less than one minute to load seven clips, and I was timing myself! After I stopped doing that, the speedloader got a lot easier to use. It was made to load wadcutters, but domed and pointed pellets load the easiest. Not watching the clock is the real secret to this job.

This speedloader works only with Umarex clips (not the Daisy, Crosman or Gamo clips that look similar), and the larger speedloader works only with clips for the Crosman 1077 and NightStalker. If you shoot a lot of pellets through these guns, you need a speedloader!

22 Responses to “Check out the Diabolo Speedloader”

  • airgundoc Says:

    These devices are a real boon to the use of rapid fire airguns but I have noticed that not all pellets load well, particularly those that have rather small skirts and tend to occasionally fall through head up. This makes for a tricky process to rectify and sometimes produces much frustration. I was surprised to find that Crosman Premiers tend to be some of the worst offenders and RWS Hobbys work better than RWS Basics even though they are the same weight.
    CWI

  • Anonymous Says:

    A fun, well-written (and nicely illustrated post).

    Another cool accessory is a ‘Match-Box’ for target shooting. Mine is an H & N, but there are other brands. It holds 100 pellets in ten rows of ten. It is easy to fill (pour in some pellets, shake the box to get them in the holes and right way up, empty the excess pellets). It makes it easy to grab a pellet for loading and provides a quick check on how many shots have been fired.

    An Anschutz “Safety-Box” to hold your pellet tin closed is a nice thing to have. It is a plastic sleeve that fits around your previously opened tin and keeps it closed. A great way to prevent spills.

    Ehrich

  • dm20 Says:

    bb, or anyone with a 1077,
    i am considering downgrading from my b20 to a 1077, for the purpose of having a semi auto rifle. ti is the only semi auto in edmonton. i read your review along with tom gaylord’s, and i really am considering it. i just dont want to be disapointed. logic would say to stick with the b20, because it costs more. i’ve never used powerlets before, so if i dont puncture it right, will i lose gas? on some reviews, i read that after 40 shots, the power dives so badly that a pellet will only go half-way down the barrel. and, is it accurate enough that i can hit an aspirin, everytime, or at least compare with my b20, made in germany? (from my 5 metre range, scoped) to warrant 1 $300 scope, i think so. and, is the reciever plastic or metal? i notice you often say “my first rifle”. did the second rifle not perform as well? and, can i wear in the clip when it is inserted into the rifle without gas? i was thinking of a power drill with a bent piece of heavy gauge wire, which does all the work for me.
    thanks for reading, i know theres alot of questions.
    btw, ehrich, wouldnt putting the cap on be the same?

  • Anonymous Says:

    B.B.,

    Lubrication Questions:

    1) What should be used, if anything, to lubricate the internals of a PCP?

    2) What do you recommend, if anything, for lubricating the chamber of a modern spring piston air gun?

    3) How is the compression chamber of a recoilless spring gun different with respect to lubrication? (see below)

    Discussion (and more queries):

    You, and others, recommend putting a drop of Crosman Pellgun oil on the top of a CO2 cartridge (or on the pin) when attaching the cartridge to protect the internal seals, etc. Of course CO2 is inert and this is safe. (Additionally the flash point of Pellgun oil may be very high, but I don’t know what it is made of – it may be a synthetic.)

    What about PCP’s? No petroleum based oil should get near compressed air as this is very dangerous. Silicon grease (from a dive shop or otherwise) is used on filling probes and the like, but is there anything to introduce into the gun to protect the seals? I’ve had a number of them for years and have never experienced a leak so I am not eager to try anything, but good seal health is important to all of us. :)

    My FWB 700 match rifle incorporates a refillable compressed air cylinder. Feinwerkbau does not recommend any maintenance or oiling whatsoever other than to shot an occasional felt cleaning pellet. (Interestingly, Anschutz warns to never use felt cleaning pellets – The only thing I can think of is that the little fibers could possible get into the transfer port.) The top shooters have their rifles serviced at least annually, but most of these guns don’t see or need additional care other than regular wipe downs and loving treatment. (A match rifle or match pistol is a beautiful thing.)

    Crosman sells “Silicon Chamber Oil” for spring air rifles, stating “Keep your rifle like new with this lubricant specially created for Crosman spring air rifles. Never use regular Pellgun oil for a spring air rifle.” Apparently this oil has a high enough flash point that it will not diesel or will limit dieseling in a spring piston air gun chamber. However, there is nothing about lubricating a PCP.

    Then there is Beeman. Beeman previously stated: “Only Beeman Chamber Oil 9250, Beeman Airlube 9300 or Beeman Ultra Lube 9290 (the only recommended lube for recoilless airguns) should be used in the compression chamber.” Any idea what these oils are and how they are different? (I have some 9250 and 9290 that I bought some time ago. They seem like nice oil.)

    Now Beeman states: “The compression chamber is that portion of the receiver where actual air compression takes place when the piston moves forward in shooting. The piston seal in most modern air guns is made of a synthetic material that is self lubricating. It should only be lubricated during routine maintenance performed by an authorized service shop.” They don’t even sell chamber oil, offering only their MP-5 Metalophilic Oil (which should never get near a chamber) and moly paste lubricant.

    So should we lubricate the chamber? If so, with what?

    As a side issue, I have no idea how the compression chamber of a recoilless spring gun is different to require different lubrication. I have a RWS 75 T0 1 match rifle and it has needed very little care to work wonderfully well for years. Is there something different about recoilless chambers? (I would not expect the second piston moving in an opposite direction to limit recoil would make any difference.)

    Ehrich
    (Thinking way too much about lubrication. Next I’ll ruminate on high end audio, or high performance cars, or hand made trumpets, or any of the other silly things I am involved in.)

  • Anonymous Says:

    dm20,

    Putting the cap on should work, but since very few (if any) pellet tins have screw on lids anymore it is easy for the top to come off accidentally when traveling.

    Ehrich

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    Ehrich,

    I’d like to discuss spring piston lubrication when I get to it in the tuneup series, if that’s okay.

    There are many technicalities we need to explore. I could devote this blog to just this subject for the rest of the year and never finish it.

    Regarding the Beeman statement, like eveyone, they have learned about adult airguns as the years have passed. There was a time when Robert owned the company that they advocated a death grip on a spring gun for best accuracy. Over the years they have sold products that they no longer endorse (Dri-Slide, for example). So let me try to cover the lube question with the best information I have as of 2006.

    Concerning a PCP, WHAT are you lubricating? If it’s the hammer, conventional lubricants are okay. If it’s the inside of the reservoir, it needs no lube. I’m not clear on what is being lubed on the PCP you are asking about.

    I agree with Anschutz that felt cleaning pellets should be outlawed. You say top shooters have their guns serviced at least annually, but it’s easy for them. In Europe the factory techs show up at the matches and rebuild the competitor’s guns whether they ask or not.

    B.B.

  • Anonymous Says:

    B.B.,

    Discussing spring piston lubrication does make the most sense in the context of your tune up series. I should have thought of this. :)

    I don’t have any specific plans to lubricate anything on my PCP guns – they are working great. My only thought was that if CO2 gun seals need lubrication to keep them sealing well, perhaps PCP gun seals do also.

    Why are felt cleaning pellets evil? They seem pretty benign to me. The only concern that immediately comes to mind is being careful with a springer to make sure that you have enough of them in the barrel to keep the piston from slamming into the end of the compression chamber.

    Do you happen to know if there is anything fundamentally different about the compression chamber of a recoilless spring gun?

    BTW, I like your description as to how a recoilless spring gun feels. There remains a distinct, crisp, but subtle jolt upon firing such a gun. I like the feedback even though it may take away from possible ultimate accuracy (I’ll never shoot that precisely to know).

    Ehrich

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    Ehrich,

    Felt pellets are a problem for the reason you mention.

    Yes, these is such a thing as lubricating a PCP internal seals, but it is usually done at the factory and, since the gun is never supposed to be empty again, it remains where it was put. The CO2 gun is in a constant state of change, regarding internal pressure, so it needs frequent lubrication.

    I guess the approach to internal lubrication of PCPs comes if and when they start to leak. Then lubrication is often the first correctional step taken.

    Yes, there are differences between some recoilless spring piston guns and those that recoil. The Diana guns made before 1995 may have internal seals that degrade in the presence of lubrication – the same as most Walther recoiling spring guns and FWB spoters. The Germans got the wrong synthetic in these earlier guns. Hence, 100 percent of Diana recoilless guns with the Giss contra-recoil system that were made before about 1985 have to be resealed at some point. Many have been by now. Most FWB 124s and 127s have destroyed their seals, as have most Walther target rifles (spring-piston only).

    If we could save any further discussion until we get to that part of the tuneup I would appreciate it, because you see how long my answers are getting. I will not be tuning any recoilless guns you you, however, and your questions are well-taken.

    In the future, can you give me a gun’s model number to discuss?

    B.B.

  • mr-lama Says:

    B.B.

    I have a quick question for you. I just got that cfx with my 6-24 scope (combo works great by the way, no loading problem) I was just wondering how I would go about putting a bipod on it. I know on the bottom of the muzzle break looking thing it has a small rail. Is there a bipod I can get that fits directly onto this rail. Or do I need to get some sort of swivel mount and a bipod that fits on it. If its the second, please explain how to do this because I have no experience with bipods. Thanks

    lama

  • Plinker Guy Says:

    Hey I was wondering what a appropriate trap would be for a under 800fps bb/pellet gun and a 400fps co2 pistol shooting bb/pellet. Maybe you could even do a post on how to make safe traps? I’ve also noticed that since a lot of OT comments come up, maybe you should implement a forum into this site! Also could you do a post on the Gamo P-23?

  • D.B. Says:

    The speed loader is a wonderful device: a must have. I have found many ways to do it wrong, and only one way to do it right. Use empty clips only. Never try to readjust the parts once you’ve started. Gently brush the extra pellets off the platform, never try to pour them off, and always keep it level while loading. You’ll wonder how you got along without it.
    Dave

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    Lama,

    Some guns just aren’t made for bipods and underlevers are tops on the list.

    The “rail” on the underside of the CF-X muzzle cap is plastic, so there’s no telling how long it will last, but it will work! I have just mounted an AirForce bipod on that rail and the gun is sitting up on it now.

    You can cock the gun without the bipod getting in the way, so in theory this solution works, but again, I have no idea how long that plastic will hold up.

    B.B.

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    Plinker Guy,

    I have mentioned the Crosman 850 BB trap many times in past posts. You need the ballistic curtains to shop BBs effectively.

    B.B.

  • Anonymous Says:

    B.B.,

    Thanks for the info! The detailed infromation was tremendously helpful. I greatly appreciate your help.

    Ehrich

  • can killer Says:

    dm20,
    First, just because it costs more does not mean it’s better(although it is).
    Seconed, it’s hard to puncture them wrong, unless you do it really slowly. Just pretend you are winding an alarm clock, you’ll be fine.
    Third, the power does drop off to that point, but youd be an idiot to think you could hit anything by that time anyway. I suggest getting the CO2 upgrade for it, it has considerable more shotss in it, and I’m sure you’re not going for asthetics anyway.
    Fourth, I can hit an asprin from five yards without aa scope, but I don’t know what it will do past about eight, I have another for that. And I would keep the scope at it’s current ressidence, buy a cheap one, a dot sight, or go iron like me.
    It is all plastic parts, with few exeptions, made inexspensivly but sturdy, and DO NOT do whatever it was you were thinking of doing with a drill, there is a tab in the back of the clip holder “magazine” to fiddle with while you watch TV to break in, not a cheap bearing or something.
    Not a bad buy for the money, but really a plinker or short range targeter only powerwise, and lots of fun for the ten years I’ve had mine.
    Hope I helped you out, have fun whatever you get!

  • dm20 Says:

    thanks can killer, it was very useful.
    about a pellet trap, i went to my local hardware store and bought some doweling, then hung some canvas over it. a more powerful gun might benefit from having more layers of cloth. a pellet hits the canvas, which flies backwards, absorbing the impact. then the pellet harmlessly falls to the floor, no ricochets. a D-I-Y version of the crosman trap. of course, you could buy the pre-made trap hassle free, but a hand made trap can be made exactly the way you want it. it could, for example, span the whole wall of your living room. a cardboard gutter underneath the canvas makes clean-up easy. how hard can it be? any heavy cloth should do.

  • mr-lama Says:

    Another good pellet trap (don’t know how it works with bb’s) is a phonebook. All you have to do is prop it up on a wall or hang it whatever, and staple a target to it. A good thick phonebook will work with my cf-x from 5 yards. Really effective and cheap. And for some reason I seem to have a ton of those old things sitting around my house. I call it recycling. :) Hope this helps

    lama

  • can killer Says:

    Just got a phone book dropped off Friday, and both lead and steel bb’s bounce off it. Cheap, but unsafe. I suggest what I use, egg crates, the kind that hold thirty eggs with no lid. I get them from work when the machine shops drop off parts, and sometimes get a stack two feet tall to add to the backstop.

  • John Says:

    Can anyone name an supplier that I may urchase an Diabolo Speedloader? Every site that I've run across has discontinued it! So if I could get some help out there I would be a happy camper!
    Thanks
    JR

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    John,

    According to the website, the speedloader is in stock here at Pyramyd Air.

    http://www.pyramydair.com/s/a/Speedloader_for_12_shot_rotary_clips_Reloads_4_Clips_at_Once_Fits_Crosman_1077_NightStalker_mags/332

    B.B.

  • Anonymous Says:

    Hello folks, kinda resurrecting an old post, but I've been unable to locate the diabolo reloaders anywhere these days. Are these products completely discontinued? Is there a replacement product available?

  • B.B. Pelletier Says:

    The diabolo speedloaders just didn't sell in the quantities needed to keep them alive. You might call Pyramyd Air and see if they still have a few laying around.

    B.B.

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