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Old July 10, 2013, 06:40 PM   #1
NateKirk
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Cartridge coversion Issues

So first of all I love my 51 navy, but it's being difficult. I have it cartridge converted and while the conversion cylinder works fine, I cant get the black powder cylinder to spin without pushing the wedge out more than I am comfortable with. Normally I push the wedge in until the little lip on the spring just clears the barrel but I cant do this with the black powder cylinder. I can push the wedge in about 1/2 to 2/3 of the way in and still get it to cycle. It still holds the barrel on and I shot a few rounds through it like this but want to know if it is safe

Now for my second question.....

Anyone have issues with specific brands of cartridges that are fussy? I used to use Ultramax ammo and those fed in without a problem, but this new box of Black Hills ammo seems to be having difficulty with one of the chambers.

Or maybe it's my gun?

Anyway thanks for any responses
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Old July 10, 2013, 07:11 PM   #2
45 Dragoon
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Your prob is why my Dragoons are fitted with conversions and will remain that way. Repo "Colts" are not close tolerance enough to have a true "two guns in one" unless you get one built on a Wednesday!! I am too much a perfectionist and am happy to attain that with a cartridge version of my fav opentops.


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P.S. I reload, no probs !!!

Last edited by 45 Dragoon; July 10, 2013 at 07:17 PM.
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Old July 10, 2013, 07:15 PM   #3
Hawg Haggen
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Did you do the conversion or did somebody else do it. It sounds like the barrel was set back to close up the cylinder gap on the conversion cylinder so the C&B cylinder is binding on the forcing cone.
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Old July 10, 2013, 09:16 PM   #4
44 Dave
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Know any one with a milling machine?
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Old July 10, 2013, 09:43 PM   #5
NateKirk
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To dragoon, I love my conversion too!

About milling machines, would it be bad to take a 1/1000th or two off the face of the black powder cylinder? It would probably fit that way
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Old July 10, 2013, 09:55 PM   #6
4V50 Gary
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Alternatively one can get that tool to shave off .001 from the forcing cone of the barrel.
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Old July 11, 2013, 04:43 PM   #7
Bill Akins
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Since your conversion cylinder fits fine, I wouldn't mess with shaving the breech end of the barrel for when you use your percussion cylinder so the wedge can go in all the way, ......since that would open up a larger barrel to cylinder gap when you used your conversion cylinder that currently fits fine.

Instead just get some 220 wet/dry sandpaper and place it on a flat (like glass) surface and wet it. Then put your percussion cylinder face down on it and pushing down evenly, spin it and spin it so the sandpaper evenly sands off a little off the face of the percussion cylinder. Checking it for proper fit and that the wedge goes further in by putting it back in the gun's frame every so often until the wedge will go in all the way to where the spring just exits the other side of the barrel. Keep checking it for fit as you do it because you don't want to over sand it. Make sure you keep an even downward pressure at all times so it won't sand too much off one area and not another. Also the reason you spin it to sand it is so it won't sand off unevenly like it could if you just pushed it back and forth. Once you spin sand off enough (it won't take too much), and it fits correctly, then dab on some cold blue to the face of the cylinder to reblue it. Easy peasy fix and by sanding the percussion cylinder, you don't change anything on the frame or barrel of the revolver that could negatively affect it working with the conversion cylinder.

Purists will cringe over my changing the face of a .455 Webley revolver cylinder to accept .45 auto rim. But over 30 years ago I had this old Webley revolver in .455 caliber. No .455 ammo around for it locally back then. .45 auto rim would fit fine in the chambers but the .455 rim was thinner than the .45 auto rim so in order to use .45 auto rim that had a thicker rim, I had to remove steel from the rear face of the cylinder in order for the topbreak Webley to close.

I had this old antique hand cranked drill press that belonged to my grandfather and was at least 100 years old. I found a drill bit that was just under the diameter of the center hole in the Webley's cylinder. I wrapped tape around the drill bit til the Webley's cylinder fit tightly around the bit. Chucked the bit into the drill press and holding a file so that the non striated file side was against the star area so it wouldn't file the star area, I started cranking the drill press so the rear of the cylinder was turning against the file I was holding. That worked great.

I'd crank the drill press to turn the cylinder against the file a bit, then check the cylinder in the frame until I got it to where it would accept .45 auto rim and the topbreak Webley would close. A little dab of cold blue on it and I was done and ready to shoot .45 auto rim.

Yes the .455 bore of the barrel was just a teeeeny bit larger than the .45 auto rim projectile, but it was still accurate enough for plinking. Same is true for those Canadian or British .455 model 1917 S&W's that people have converted to shoot .45 acp in moon clips or .45 auto rim. I wouldn't do it today because my 1915 birds head grip Webley would be too valuable to do that with today. But that was over 30 years ago when the old Webley wasn't as valuable unaltered as it is today, and I just wanted to shoot it and no .455 ammo was available in my area back then. So no purist flaming please! Lol.

That worked perfect and got the old Webley to where it could shoot .45 auto rim. Still kick myself for trading that Webley.

But the point is, you don't need to remove anywhere near as much material off the cylinder as I did for that, and I was removing material off the rear of the cylinder and having to be careful not to file any of the ratchet area, whereas you would be removing material off the front face of your percussion cylinder with no ratchet area to be careful about.

But the idea is the same. You need to evenly remove some material off the front face of your percussion cylinder. But the amount you need to remove is so little, I wouldn't trust spinning it against a file like I did. Much less chance of removing too much if you use wet/dry sandpaper, plus it will be easier for you because you aren't having to file the rear face of the cylinder and ejector while being careful not to file the ratchet like I was having to do. Since you aren't filing around a ratchet, you can just sit the whole cylinder face down on the wet/dry sandpaper and spin it by hand. Might take a while and many spins, but easy to do.

Try what I told you, and let us know.



.
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"This is my Remy and this is my Colt. Remy loads easy and topstrap strong, Colt balances better and never feels wrong. A repro black powder revolver gun, they smoke and shoot lead and give me much fun. I can't figure out which one I like better, they're both fine revolvers that fit in my leather".
"To be sure of hitting the target, shoot first and call whatever you hit the target".

Last edited by Bill Akins; July 11, 2013 at 05:25 PM.
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Old July 11, 2013, 06:09 PM   #8
45 Dragoon
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Just wondering how well your Navy shoots with 38's (.357's) since the barrel is .375 or so? Don't get me wrong, that too was my first "conversion" back in the late 80's (gotta start somewhere).


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P.S. Nate, the big conversions are just pure joy to shoot !!! My two 1st mods. both punch clover leafs all day long at 30 feet (sometimes a 4 leaf clover shows up!).
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Old July 11, 2013, 10:01 PM   #9
NateKirk
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To Dragoon,

Actually my "navy" revolver isn't navy at all since it's a .44 but it shoots great! Now I can just need to get a .36 so I can see the difference

I think I'll try the idea with the sand paper, shouldn't be too hard
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Old July 12, 2013, 06:38 AM   #10
Captchee
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this spring , i picked up an old Uberti navy and a early Kirst conversion at a gun show for under 300.00 .
Had the same problem . Everything would work fine with the cap and ball cylinder . But she wouldn’t work at all with the conversion cylinder .
After fitting the conversion and having the navy tuned , , I had the same problem .
Basically I did as bill instructed and now it works with both .

As to how it shoots with .357 .
Well im not a pistol shooter by any means , but even for me , it shot like crap
No accuracy what so ever unless I was at 5-10 yards . I just never knew where the bullet was going to land . It didn’t mater , hollow base or wad cutters .
I went through the process of considering lining the barrel ……
But after doing some chatting with others to include Bill , I bought a mould for a heeled bullet and the crimp die from Bernie at old west bullet moulds and started reloading .
I now have far better accuracy . At least to the point I can see that there is potential to the point that the issues im still having is IMO a combination of my lack of practice combined with my load , which I have been working on . So its gradually coming around.
Seriously though for a couple months I was about at the point of selling it and buying a unerti that was already built for .357 . would have been far cheeper in the long run .
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Old July 12, 2013, 06:52 AM   #11
4V50 Gary
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What Bill Atkins suggested sounds better than mine.

I have a piece of round stock center that I surface ground flat. It has a hole in the center to accommodate the gas ring (if any) on a cylinder. I place emery paper (with a hole cut out in the center) on the block and then spin the cylinder by hand to polish the cylinder face.

BTW, I had it color case hardened too.
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Old July 12, 2013, 08:54 AM   #12
45 Dragoon
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Nate, gottcha! I forget about those "44 navies" !!! I'm sure it's suh-weet! Big slow movin lead . . . . . gotta love it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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Old July 12, 2013, 11:23 AM   #13
Roshi
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Great post and advice.
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