I will admit up front, I am in love with Maglula loaders. Personally, I use the UPLULA for pistols and AR-15 LULA almost daily. I won’t leave for the range without them. The AR-15 LULA unloads magazines and well as loading them. This saves me from ripping up my fingers and nails trying to empty a magazine.
I have long lusted after Maglula’s Benchloader, but its price could only be justified by someone loading many more magazines than I do. Fortunately, Maglula has a more affordable version, called the Range BenchLoader.
Different materials and manufacturing processes allow Maglula to sell the Range BenchLoader at a significantly lower price point than the original. I can’t tell you how they compare to each other in operation because I never used the original BenchLoader, but I can tell you that I am quite impressed with the performance of the Range BenchLoader.
Working with .223 or 5.56 ammunition, the BenchLoader is designed to load magazines with a single stroke. Simply insert the magazine on the left side, place whatever number of rounds that you want to load into the BenchLoader’s tray and slide the lever toward the magazine. The loader works with all capacity magazines and is labeled in 5-round increments for easy counting. You can load as little as 1 round or as many as 30 rounds in a single stroke.
When I go out for a day of shooting or for a class, I prefer to load my magazines before leaving. The Range BenchLoader not only saves time, it makes the process a breeze. I tested it with standard aluminum magazines as well as Magpul magazines. All functioned flawlessly. While I have not tested other brands, Maglula states that the Range BenchLoader is also compatible with SCAR, HK metal, SureFire 60- and 100-round, Beretta, Lancer, and all other STANAG magazines. Maglula’s website does caution that loading difficulties exist with the new Lancer L5AWM magazines due to its construction, but their older magazines load very well.
I found that I can load the fastest by emptying the factory ammunition boxes and dumping the rounds into a larger box. Using both hands, I load two rounds at a time with each hand. I keep mine loose, but the Range BenchLoader can be mounted to a table. If you can spare the room on your bench, I think it mounting it might make loading a bit faster.
Maglula’s website states that its easy to operate with gloves as well. I agree, but it’s a bit trickier to get the rounds in hand with gloves on.
The Range BenchLoader comes with a carry case with a MSRP of $165. Street price will be less. Highly recommended if you load lots of magazines!
Are you a Maglula fan? How many magazines do you normally run through at an average range session? Share your answers in the comment section.
David Kenik is the owner of Armed Response, author of the book, Armed Response, and co-author of the Armed Response Video Training Series. www.armedresponsetraining.com
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