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Old December 16, 2008, 07:42 PM   #1
Indian Outlaw
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The Spiller & Burr Revolver

Hi. Newbie here.

I handled a used Spiller & Burr yesterday and liked it better than my Remington. It fit my hand well. Are the Pietta/Traditions S&Bs well made? Is there anything I should know before ordering one from Dixie?

Would love to see some pics of S&Bs!

Regards,
IO
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Old December 16, 2008, 07:57 PM   #2
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Been thinking about 'em also, and have the same questions.

http://www.csarmory.org/spiller/page2.html
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Old December 16, 2008, 08:12 PM   #3
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They're based on the Whitney revolvers. Mine is pretty old. Because they're brass, you should keep the loads fairly low (15 grs of black powder). Great guns.
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Old December 16, 2008, 08:26 PM   #4
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Dunno bout the Spiller and Burr but Pietta's 60 Colt's and 58 Remingtons are top notch.
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Old December 17, 2008, 08:25 AM   #5
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The originals have a higher hammer spur and a different grip. There is more room behind the triggerguard on the originals.

Some people say they're loud, for a .36 BP revolver.

http://vhs3.vahistorical.org/vhsimag...990.100.13.jpg

Last edited by Riot Earp; December 17, 2008 at 08:52 AM.
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Old December 17, 2008, 09:23 AM   #6
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I have an older Italian S&B clone which I got years ago second hand. The nipples are beat to snot and will not take a cap. Anybody know where to get them and what load to use. I have not shot the thing in 15 years.
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Old December 17, 2008, 11:06 AM   #7
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My Pietta made Spiller & Burr is one of my favorite 36 cal .Revolvers .
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Old December 17, 2008, 12:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
I have an older Italian S&B clone which I got years ago second hand. The nipples are beat to snot and will not take a cap. Anybody know where to get them and what load to use. I have not shot the thing in 15 years.
Thunder Ridge http://www.thunder-ridge.com/ , or The Possible Shop http://www.possibleshop.com/ are good places to try. Size will depend on who manufactured your S&B. Brass framed; 15 grains of fffg would be a good load.

FM
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Old December 18, 2008, 01:57 AM   #9
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If I had a gun with a nipple of an unknown size, I would ask this outfit to help me because they're a specialty nipple manufacturer.

1-800-337-1243

http://blomquistpercussionworks.com/products.html
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Old December 18, 2008, 11:04 AM   #10
Indian Outlaw
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Gonna get me one.
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Old December 18, 2008, 12:37 PM   #11
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I'm going to order a pair. I'll keep the better of the two and send the other back. I might do something different and have Turnbull case harden the loading lever. Will also replace the nipples with Tresos.
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Old December 18, 2008, 01:32 PM   #12
sundance44s
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Never have had a nipple problem with my Pietta made Spiller ...I use #10 Remington caps ...they fit like a glove ..no problems .
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Old December 18, 2008, 07:37 PM   #13
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Forgot to mention that the originals also have a smaller, rounder triggerguard.

So, for example, you can tell that pohill's gun is a replica by the large triggerguard, the grip shape/angle, and the low hammer spur.

Caveat Emptor: There are fake S&Bs out there.
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Old December 18, 2008, 07:59 PM   #14
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Quote:
you can tell that pohill's gun is a replica
Are you positive? Some knowledgeable people aren't. I'm still not 100% sure.
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Old December 18, 2008, 08:11 PM   #15
Riot Earp
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Check out the two links posted above and study the originals very closely, paying particular attention to the triggerguards, hammers, and grips.

People say the best way to tell if a dollar bill is a counterfeit is to study the minutest details of the genuine article. Once you know the genuine front and back, the fake becomes easy to spot. The same goes for guns.

I'm 99% certain yours is a replica.
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Old December 18, 2008, 10:23 PM   #16
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I'm more like 80% to 90% sure it's a replica, but...
I showed it to a BP shooter at my club and he handled it, examined it and said it was an original. Several others that have actually seen it and handled it are just not sure, like me. I even bought the book, THE CONFEDERATE BRASS-FRAMED COLT & WHITNEY by William Albaugh, and that added to the confusion due to the list of known serial numbers (mine is #82 which is unaccounted for). The only sure way would be to have the cylinder tested to see if it's made of iron, but I don't want to ruin the cylinder.
Hey, anything's possible.





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Old December 19, 2008, 05:27 AM   #17
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The CSA alone tells you it's not the real deal. The hammer, grips and trigger guard as mentioned are all different.
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Old December 19, 2008, 06:08 AM   #18
pohill
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Here's the deal and it's real. I never asked if anyone thought my revolver was original, I just posted a pic of it. Never asked. If anyone thinks they can judge anything about any gun by looking at pics, hey, you must be good, you must be exceptional. Like I said, knowledgeable people have handled it and examined it and they're still not sure.
So, if it floats your boat, call it a replica.
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Old December 19, 2008, 08:20 AM   #19
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Earp, you have an eye for detail. I hadn't noticed those differences until you pointed them out.
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Old December 19, 2008, 11:54 AM   #20
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For a truly expert opinion on the matter, I suggest that you send these pics to the people at www.damonmills.com, or to another premier antique gun site, and ask them to settle the issue. Then please post their response here on the board. I will be very surprised if they can't make a determination from pics alone.
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Old December 19, 2008, 12:41 PM   #21
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The keys to this gun being identified are actually the cylinder and the topstrap. The original cylinders were made of iron, and the topstraps were very thin and thus took a beating. Other variations, trigger guard, etc, can be attributed to the manufacturing process and the different lcoations where they were made. Some were stamped Spiller & Burr, some CS, some CSA, some not stamped at all.
So, what if this cylinder is made of iron? Does that mean it's an original? Maybe, maybe not. But the topstrap is in great shape, it's not weak, or thin, so to me that is the key.
Is it a fake or a defarbed repro? I haven't seen too many, or any, fake Spiller & Burrs, but a few defarbed ones. Fake would imply a conscious effort to deceive on the part of the seller/owner.
Do I think it's an original? Like I said, I'm 80% to 90% sure it's not. Someday I might have an "expert" look at it, if I could determine what qualifies someone as an expert in regards to such an obscure revolver (unlike a Colt expert), but until then, it's not really an issue with me. But it is interesting.
Check out this gun - is it an original Whitney or a Palmetto repro?
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Old December 19, 2008, 01:34 PM   #22
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Modern replicas of the Spiller and Burr have steel cylinders, that's the easiest way to tell that I know of. Some, not all of the originals had C.S. stamped on the. None had CSA that I am aware of.
This is a modern manufacter, maker unknown. It appears to be defarbed.


This one is original

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Old December 19, 2008, 03:02 PM   #23
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Did anybody think about measuring the rate of twist in the barrels and compare?
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Old December 19, 2008, 07:25 PM   #24
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Quote:
Check out this gun - is it an original Whitney or a Palmetto repro?
Original Whitney
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Old December 19, 2008, 08:29 PM   #25
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Correct. But the store that sold it to me said it was a pre-Italian Whitney repro. They should have known better. Oh well, my gain.
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