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John P.
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Posted: April 05 2018 at 7:09pm | IP Logged Quote John P.

I would like to get into BP handgun in the next couple of months, and I
think I am going to get a 1851 Colt Navy replica. Is one brand better
than another? I know to stay away from brass frames. I believe I am
going to get either a Uberti or a Taylor imported Uberti. I read some
articles about soft steel with the replicas made Italy, but it seems that I
have no other choices.

Any advise would be appreciated and thanks in advance.
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Old Ranger
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Posted: April 05 2018 at 9:24pm | IP Logged Quote Old Ranger

Uberti weapons are excellent. You cannot go wrong there.
Taylor & Company have a good QC and customer service is
great.

Also check out Dixie Gunworks. Wonder folks!

How good is your local supply of caps? Powder? Pyrodex is
awful! Tripple Seven is too hot. Real BP is hard to get
in many areas.

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REM1875
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Posted: April 06 2018 at 4:18am | IP Logged Quote REM1875

I like the Remingtons myself or revolvers with a top
strap but I got to admit that that 1862 Colt is probably
the best looker.
Uberti or Davide Pedersoli do excellent work on their
guns I have owned so far ..... (although i lean towards
Uberti dues to seemingly better finish )
Try Cabalas bargain cave as they often have a few at
decent prices .....

Edited by REM1875 on April 06 2018 at 4:22am


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turbo1889
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Posted: April 06 2018 at 6:39am | IP Logged Quote turbo1889

The only cap and ball BP revolver I own is
a reproduction of the Walker 44. Now that
is a gun !!!

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John P.
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Posted: April 08 2018 at 6:47am | IP Logged Quote John P.

Thanks guys. I am going with the Uberti.

Old Ranger, your questions are exactly my concern. Everything for BP
around here in meant for in-lines. Mostly Triple 7 or Pyrodex and 209
primers. I rarely even see number 11 caps anymore since the 209 fired
in- lines have become so popular. I go to northern New Hampshire a
few times a year, and I see BP up there sometimes at the local shops.
So getting FFFG there is may best chance. If not, it will have to be
Pyrodex P.   As far as the number 10 caps which I am told work best
with the replicas, I will order on line in quantity, and pay the HazMat fee.

Regarding loads, is it better to used a greased wad between the
powder and ball, or is is better to apply the grease over the ball? When
I mean better, I am referring to accuracy and preventing chain fires.
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REM1875
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Posted: April 08 2018 at 6:51am | IP Logged Quote REM1875

Yeah Turbo that is a gun ...
For the light stuff I use my Ruger Old Army with F-F-F-F
and it's a whomper....
(some gas cutting from 4F also cutting in my Ruger 45
Colt (LC) from FFFF)

BEWARE
Not recommended for most BP revolvers !!!
But was listed in the Lyman BP Manual for the above ....

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REM1875
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Posted: April 08 2018 at 7:00am | IP Logged Quote REM1875

"Regarding loads, is it better to used a greased wad
between the powder and ball, or is is better to apply
the grease over the ball? When I mean better, I am
referring to accuracy and preventing chain fires."


With felt wad there is some contamination of the
powder but minimal.....Easier and neater

Lube over the balls is traditional....I used Crisco
for ages ....I had one cylinder chain fire once but
thank heavens it was not the full monte . I think some
of the grease was blown in and kept the rest of the
powder from going off..... I suspect it as an
undersized ball.....

Since I mainly used 'grease over' I really can't say
it would never happen with wads but I never any
experience with it happening ......

Edited by REM1875 on April 08 2018 at 7:01am


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beerd
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Posted: April 08 2018 at 7:49am | IP Logged Quote beerd

4 minute video to save you some money:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TUfHjX6gAQA
..
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Old Ranger
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Posted: April 08 2018 at 8:08am | IP Logged Quote Old Ranger

Wonder Wads are fine. A wad & ball combination is cleaner
than outside lube and is easier to be consistent with
moderate loading. I personally don't buy into the
multiple discharge from the front of the cylinder. I
strongly suspect it's caused from the rear With loose
caps or even one missing from the nipple via previous
recoil knocking it loose or off. The wad actually serves
to reduce the BP fouling and enhance the shooting.

Depending upon the import, cap size can vary. #10 often
will fit, but sometimes you're in need of a #11 cap. The
nipples aren't all the same. Best method I can recommend
is buy a tin of each and test em out. I have an ASM made
2nd Model Dragoon that will not take a #10, but an 11 is
loose. Been this way since 1969 when I got it. I simply
pinch an 11 and it stays put. Oh, the best way is to
replace the nipples, but where's the fun in that?

Powder... Best thing around in the BP sub business is
American Pioneer Powder. Clean burning. Requires NO LUBE!
In fact, if you use BP style lube you WILL foul your
weapon badly. Load with NO lube and it creates its own
when fired. Remarkable stuff. When the Great hoarding
Adventure came about a few years ago and no smokeless
powder was available, I loaded my pistols with APP.
Worked like a charm. And used conventional smokeless
style bullet lubricant in 38, 44, and 45 caliber.
With this style powder all you do is simply put your load
into the chamber, drop the ball above it, and ram it
home. It will create its own lubrication when you shoot
and your weapon will look no more fouled than if you were
shooting Unique or Universal In one of your smokeless
revolvers.

Pyrodex is horribly corrosive! So much so, that it makes
black powder almost look harmless. I do not use, nor
recommend Pyrodex for anything. Awful stuff. Triple 7 is
simply too hot to shoot in your standard revolvers unless
you load light and then make use of a filler, which of
course the manufacturer says don't use a filter with this
powder. so I'd go with APP if it was me.

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turbo1889
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Posted: April 08 2018 at 7:25pm | IP Logged Quote turbo1889

My woman shots BPCR and cowboy action and
at least for the former insists on real BP
and gets it from her sources in that world
buying from others with local supplies at
competition meets since real BP is hard to
find usually in my area so I usually
piggyback my needs for BP on hers and have
her pick me up a little as well.

As to preventing chainfires on my Walker
replica I have a mold that casts a bullet
with three body bands and two lube grooves
that is a reverse taper design where the
bottom diameter of the three driving bands
is slightly under diameter and the top
diameter is oversize so when you ram them
home they fully seal with three bands and
two lube grooves between the cylinder gap
side flash and the powder underneath.
Check "track of the wolf" online for a
similar mold for your application.

Edited by turbo1889 on April 08 2018 at 7:27pm


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REM1875
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Posted: April 09 2018 at 3:16am | IP Logged Quote REM1875

turbo
I do the same with 45-70 bullets I shoot in the Old Army
sizing the bottom band down to 454 and the rest of the
round at 457 ...... Makes loading a lot easier .....

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John Van Gelder
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Posted: April 13 2018 at 7:57am | IP Logged Quote John Van Gelder

The best of the black powder revolvers are the Ruger Old Armys, but I do not think Ruger makes those any longer.

I have used both the Colt and Remington copies and currently have a couple of the Remingtons, there are pros and cons for both designs. The Remingtons tend to jam easier from spent caps and the rammer system is also a weak spot, the linkages tend to be bit soft and if you use anything but absolutely soft lead you can break them. The rammer on the colts is much more robust.

The Remington copies tend to shoot much closer to point of aim than the Colts, which all seem to shoot very high.

The Remingtons are easier to clean, drop the ramming lever pull the base pin and the cylinder comes right out. Pull the grip panels, remove the trigger guard, and the whole gun can go into a bucket of hot soapy water, the Colts take a bit more disassembly to clean the lock work.

The other issue about propellant is a real consideration, the absolute best for those guns is black powder, which is getting difficult to find.

I have used the BP substitutes, but the real stuff is still the best.   
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John P.
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Posted: April 13 2018 at 7:08pm | IP Logged Quote John P.

REM1875: an old co-worker, unfortunately long passed, shot much BP
handgun, and all he used was Crisco. He always told me BP firearms
had to be seasoned with natural lubes unlike modern guns.

Old Ranger: thanks for the usual great advise! I will look for American
Pioneer Powder. How did you clean the modern firearms loaded with
American Pioneer?   Also, it appears that Power Valley will ship BP.   I
may buy a couple of pounds of FFFG and 1K of number 10 caps, and
just pay the Hazmat fee. What do you think is better, BP or American
Pioneer, if I get the choice of both?

John: I am very fond of my single action Rugers, and if the OA was still
produced, it would undoubtedly be my pick.

Thanks again guys.
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John Van Gelder
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Posted: April 14 2018 at 6:05am | IP Logged Quote John Van Gelder

John P.

What every you decide on, you are in for an adventure. Shooting BP is a lot of fun, and as with anything else there is a learning curve. Just remember soft lead for bullets. Crisco works but is not the best choice, there are a number of commercial lubes, but I have always made my own out of either peanut oil, or olive oil and some of the other vegetable oils should work, the oil mixed with bees wax. You have to experiment to get the consistency right, it needs to be soft enough that you can spread it over the top of the ball, but hard enough so it stays in place during firing, About 8 parts of oil to one of bees wax should be a good place to start.


For target shooting with muzzle loading rifles, I have put a bunch of patches in an old 35mm film container, and poured peanut oil over them. Once they have soaked up the oil, you can go and entire shooting session with no appreciable build up of BP fouling in the barrel.   
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Old Ranger
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Posted: April 14 2018 at 7:13am | IP Logged Quote Old Ranger

John, APP leaves little fouling behind. It cleans up with
plain old water. I clean the gun just like I normally
would using smokeless powder, with the exception of water
instead of solvent. The cases are tossed in a jar of
soapy water. Sloshed around a bit. Rinsed off under
running water and dried. Use normal bullet lube in
cartridges. In BP guns, no lube is required. When burnt,
APP makes it's own lube! Remarkable. In my big 50, I
merely drop the charge. Start a ball with a DRY patch and
load. If I use a prelubed patch then bad fouling occurs.

FFF APP. .375" round ball. Caps. That's all. No bore
butter, fancy treated wads, or cooking lard required.
Pour a full charge. Load a ball. Cap the piece. You're
good to go. When done, clean with water soaked patches.
Dry. Oil. Put weapon away. Simple. A lot of folks make
operating a black powder revolver like some sort of
ritual! It's not, it's simple.
Sure, real black powder is fun, smelly, very dirty, and
cool as hell. But, it is hard to find. Many gun shops
will not stock it because of its classification. Go with
American Pioneer powder and I swear you will not be
unhappy.

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John Van Gelder
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Posted: April 14 2018 at 4:08pm | IP Logged Quote John Van Gelder

John P

Here is a video about shooting the 1851 Colt.

I like this guy's presentations, he has several very nice black powder vids.

1851 Navy
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John P.
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Posted: April 16 2018 at 7:10pm | IP Logged Quote John P.

John:

Mike "Duelist" Beliveau's videos are very well produced, and he is the
authority on BP handguns and rifles. Watching his video's I decided on
the 1851 Navy which I hope to order later this week. One of his latest
videos he entered a cap and ball match that he shot with a Uberti 1851
Navy.

Also if you like Remingtons, Mike has a video showing the one he cut
the barrel down to 5.5 inches. The Remington is fitted with the cap and
ball cylinder and a .45 Colt conversion cylinder.   He calls it the ultimate
Remington. Seems like a nice pack'n pistol.



Edited by John P. on April 16 2018 at 7:10pm
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John Van Gelder
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Posted: April 17 2018 at 5:25am | IP Logged Quote John Van Gelder

Probably my favorite BP pistol was a Uberti 2nd model Dragoon, you can get enough powder in one of those do some serious hand gun hunting, I had problems with it, sent it back to Cabellas, for some reason they discontinued that gun, they returned my money and that was the end of my 2n Model Dragoon adventure.
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REM1875
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Posted: April 17 2018 at 7:02am | IP Logged Quote REM1875

John Van Gelder wrote:
Probably my favorite BP
pistol was a Uberti 2nd model Dragoon, you can get
enough powder in one of those do some serious hand gun
hunting, I had problems with it, sent it back to
Cabellas, for some reason they discontinued that gun,
they returned my money and that was the end of my 2n
Model Dragoon adventure.


That is pretty sad John...I'd keep looking...don't
forget the bargain cave at Cabelas but I fear you are
going to have to look else wheres.

Just a reminder
"The metallurgy of 1847 caused the thin chamber walls
of some Walkers to explode upon firing, which is a
rather negative outcome when each chamber might be
stoked with as much as 60 grains of black powder.

http://forums.handloads.com/edit_post.asp?
M=Q&PID=379054&TPN=1

60 grains of FFF ??? Holy Cow
A gun like that with modern metal is hard to
loose.....

They are still listed in the Uberti catalog

https://www.uberti-usa.com/dragoon-revolvers

Sportsman Guide is out but Buds has em

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John Van Gelder
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Posted: April 17 2018 at 7:34am | IP Logged Quote John Van Gelder

That was a bit difficult to understand, they had Walkers but no 2nd mod dragoons. I have shot replica Walkers, and my thought is "where are the wheels..?"

I have a couple of Remington .44s those will probably be the last BP pistols I buy.
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