Though things move a little slower here in revolver land than they do in the bottom feeder world, new products are constantly coming and going. Many of them are updates or retreads of existing designs. Occasionally, though, something comes along for RevolverGuys that represents a brand new idea. The NeoMag RASC is one such product.
Editor’s Note: Mike and I were both provided with RASCs by NeoMag. Rather than write two reviews, we blended this into a single review. I realize this might make it hard to tell whose voice is whose, but I hope this is still readable. That is all. ~ Justin
The Original NeoMaG
NeoMag’s first and flagship product is just called “the NeoMag.” The NeoMag is a minimalist, unconventional spare magazine carrier. Instead of a pouch or pocket, it utilizes a magnetic plate to retain the magazine. Instead of mounting to one’s belt or inside one’s waistband, it is meant to be carried inside your front pocket.
When inserted into the pocket the magazine disappears, and all that remains visible is a pocket clip that could easily be mistaken for a flashlight or small knife. The clip holds the magazine in a consistent location, allowing for a clean reload. It also holds it up off the bottom of the pocket, preventing it from getting tangled up with all the other junk in there.
I’ve been aware of the NeoMag for some time. Favorable reviews from guys like Mike Seeklander have made me curious, but lacking the need for one, I’ve not purchased one. I thought it was a pretty good idea for pistols, but never imagined it could translate over to us RevolverGuys. But it has!
The NeoMag RASC
The NeoMag RASC (Revolver Ammunition Strip Carrier) is a simple little gadget designed to hold a revolver reloading strip for front pocket carry with the aid of a pocket clip. Its body is machined from 6061 aluminum and anodized in black. The machining is well done, the finish is nice and even, and the tolerances are tight. The halves line up exactly, and the hex screws cinch down nicely with the included Allen wrench, giving a perfect grip on the tab of a reloading strip.
To use the NeoMag RASC simply loosen the two screws on the body and insert the tab of a Bianchi Speed Strip, Desantis Swift Strip, or Tuff Products Quick Strip. We tried all three, and all three worked for us in the .38/.357 caliber versions (wider versions for larger calibers will not work). Next, tighten the RASC’s screws down to retain the strip. The NeoMag RASC can now be clipped discretely into your pocket, and you’ll know where it is the next time you reach for it.
The RASC’s Cerakote’d titanium pocket clip is reversible. This excellent feature permits the user to adapt the RASC from right- to left-side carry. It also lets the user choose which direction they’d like the reloading strip oriented: bullets-forward or bullets-backward. The RASCs that we received was setup for either bullets-forward, left-side carry or bullets-backward, right-side carry.
We admit to being skeptical of this design out of the gate. Right out of the package, by itself, the RASC seems pretty chunky. We weren’t sure it would be comfortable or practical sitting in a pocket sideways. When we got around to putting a Speed Strip in it and using it we were able to see that this device has some actual utility. Whether or not it’s for you depends on how you utilize reloading strips, as you’ll see.
Using The NeoMag RASC: Justin
I don’t carry a my Speed Strips on the right side of my body, and I have never considered them to be a replacement for a speedloader. I think of a Speed Strip as merely an addendum to a true speedloader. When carrying a revolver I prefer to carry my speedloader on my right-hand (strong) side. The Speed Strip gets relegated to backup duty and is carried on my left-hand side, usually sitting flat in a back pocket. Fortunately, all I typically carry in my left front pocket is my phone. The iPhone naturally tends to stay closer to the medial portion of the pocket, leaving a big space on the outside of the pocket. This seemed like the perfect place to put a RASC-enhanced Speed Strip.
I set up my RASC with a Bianchi Speed Strip. I initially tried the RASC with the clip in the default position. For me this translated to either bullets-fore, left-side carry, or bullets-aft, right-side carry. I reversed the clip after just a couple of draws and found bullets-aft, left-side carry the way to go for me. This allowed me to acquire a working grip on the Speed Strip upon withdrawal from the pocket. Depending on what you carry in your pockets, this may also protect the tips of the bullets from the ravages of keys, flashlights, and whatever else is hanging out in your pockets.
To use the NeoMag RASC simply remove it from your pocket. I recommend developing a set of indexes to allow reliable, repeatable grasp and orientation. Nothing much changes with the actual function of the reloading strip. You can set it up exactly like you always have (in my case four rounds), and can be used to load the gun just like it always has.
I carried this device for several weeks and found that the RASC conceals easily. The RASC and its payload sit flat and to be honest, I carried it a lot of time when I wasn’t even carrying a revolver. Several times I literally forgot it was even there until I’d put my hand in my pocket to pull out my phone. The NeoMag RASC didn’t interfere with anything else in my pocket, either. And it comes out of the pocket faster and more easily than the speed strip I more typically carry in my back pocket. How much faster? Quite a bit!
The RASC really surprised me. I timed my very first use of the RASC and got a time of 5.98 seconds from shot-to-shot with a 4-round reload in the middle. How does that compare with reloading from a strip carried in my back pocket? I loaded another strip up and threw it in my back pocket. My time was exactly one full second slower without the NeoMag RASC: 6.98 seconds (back in 2017 I averaged 7.65 seconds with this method). I spent a few minutes a day working with the RASC and managed to shave almost another half-second off my time.
What did you think about the RASC, Mike?
Using the NeoMag RASC: Mike
I’m glad it worked for you, Justin. Here’s my take:
I played around with moving the clip to both positions, and finally settled on a setup that would allow me to carry the strip on my right side with the cartridges facing to the rear. I carried the RASC for a month in the coin pocket of my Wrangler jeans, where my ammo strips always go. I experimented with putting it in the right front pocket, but it didn’t work so well, because that’s the side where I carry my handkerchief and keys. Every time I took one of those out, they hooked on the strip and made a mess of things. Also, carrying the RASC there meant that I had to find a new place for my folding knife.
The same thing would have happened on the left side, where my phone rides, and it also would have placed the loader in the wrong hand for loading, so the right side coin pocket was the best option for me.
This carry mode had both advantages and disadvantages. On the plus side, the strip was oriented properly for a right (my primary) hand draw, allowing me to run my thumb down the spine of the strip and hook the pocket clip with my index finger to help pull it out of my pocket. In this fashion, the strip came out in a position that was ready to use without changing my grip.
The downside of this method is that the bullet tips would sometimes catch and drag on the rear seam of my pocket as the strip was withdrawn. If I concentrated on drawing the strip in a forward direction, this was less likely to happen. However, this motion is counter to the draw stroke that I’ve burned into my gray matter over decades of drawing my S&W 640 and Spyderco knives from that pocket. In the case of the former, the slightly rearward draw strips the pocket holster (every style I use, in all the pants I wear) from the gun reliably. In the latter case, it opens up the blade on my Endura as the knife is withdrawn. So, even though I “knew” the RASC would come out cleaner if I didn’t drag it towards the rear seam, it just happened that way more often than not. Old dogs, new tricks, and all that.
I could have reversed the clip to help the RASC come out cleaner, but that would have required me to obtain a new grip on the strip in order to use it, which I thought was even less desirable.
When loading with the RASC, I found the round closest to the mounting point was slightly more difficult to strip from the loader than normal. It still came out, but I felt it took more effort to make it happen than with a bare loader. The RASC is carefully relieved to permit the strip to bend near the base (showing careful attention to design—well done, guys), but I still found that the body of the RASC interfered a bit with the operation. It’s possible that I could overcome this obstacle with more dedicated practice, but that’s just how it worked for me out of the chute.
The RASC adds some bulk to a Speed Strip. I found that when I was sitting, it sometimes poked me a bit. I normally carry my strips horizontally, with bullets down in the coin pocket, which allows me to draw the strip in a perfect position for loading, with the thumb on the spine. When carried this way, I never notice the ammo strip poking me as the pocket area tightens up from getting flexed in the seated position. The pocket tends to crease just below the bullet tips, never putting any pressure on them—the whole thing rides above the crease. However, when the strip is carried vertically with the RASC, the crease runs across the bottom third of the strip, and the spine doesn’t want to bend with the jeans. This creates a pressure point to match the other one from the thicker body of the RASC, which made it a little uncomfortable to carry.
The Bottom line: MIKE
If this makes it sound like I’m down on the RASC, I don’t intend it to. The simple fact is that the RASC didn’t work better for me than a bare strip in the particular location that I carry it. However, I think the product might be very helpful for someone who chooses to carry it in another location. Consider the guys who live in cargo pants, with a bunch of pockets—the RASC would keep the spare ammo properly oriented and quickly accessible, instead of forcing them to dig around in a cavernous pocket to find the strip and get it turned around for a draw.
A RASC might also be a good addition to the trauma plate pocket on an officer’s soft armor carrier, or the front pocket of a person who doesn’t carry as much stuff as I do in mine. A RASC might also be really handy in a backpack or range bag as a way to keep a reload at the ready without a lot of digging. Heck, you could even clip one to a sun visor or door pocket in your truck. That clip provides a lot of possibilities for you.
I think this is a well-made, clever product that wasn’t a good fit for my particular needs, but it might be just the ticket for another person or application.
Back to you, Justin!
THE BOTTOM LINE: JUSTIN
I hate to admit it but I was prepared to dislike the NeoMag RASC. I just didn’t see the utility. Like so many products that came along, it looked like a solution to a problem that didn’t need solving. It’s clear that’s not the case and the RASC has found a home in my pocket when I’m carrying a revolver. I – actually we – believe you should evaluate your use of a revolver and reloading strips. In some cases the RASC simply may not work. But in others it might, and it might work really well. The NeoMag RASC retails for $29.99 and is available at https://theneomag.com/product/rasc/.