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Old January 29, 2011, 02:35 AM   #1
strong45side
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heritage rough rider in 45/357

I see lots of reviews and videos on heritages rimfire rough riders but basically nothing on their 45 or 357 models. Can anyone give me their honest opinion only IF you have actually owned or have had alot of shooting time with one, or link me to any good articles.
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Old January 29, 2011, 02:51 AM   #2
Jim March
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What I know about 'em so far is that the core guns are made by Pietta in Italy, shipped with no finish to Heritage who does final fitting, adds US springs and blues 'em.

These are the only Piettas with transfer bar safeties.

Now...late-model Pietta guns have a pretty good rep, when sold without the safety through EMF ("Great Western II" series). I don't have any feedback on whether or not the added safety on the Heritage version made the guns less reliable.

On the Ubertis, when Beretta asked them to come up with a transfer-bar version and called it a Beretta Stampede, the added safety made the guns less reliable according to the CAS/SASS guys (who run very high round counts).

So...it's *possible* that adding a transfer bar to the Piettas messed them up. I have no idea. Haven't seen report one on the SASS or Sixgunner forums, good or bad.

Now...I'll tell you one thing I do know. I'd rather have the otherwise pretty similar Ruger New Vaquero. It's a known quantity, and I can get all kinds of extra parts to swap hammers, grips, etc. There is no lower-slung hammer available for those Pietta/Heritage guns, and it's likely a different hammer than the regular Pietta/EMF/etc. guns. You *might* be able to swap grip frames with the regular Piettas if you want the Thunderer-type available on some Piettas...but there's one of those available for Rugers too along with the Bisley, bird's head, etc.

Now...if you see a Pietta/Heritage at a gun show for $300-$350, I have to admit, that would be tempting. But over $400, I'd be close enough to a Ruger to go there.
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Old January 29, 2011, 02:57 AM   #3
strong45side
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Thanks for the info, appreciate it.

I do have a New Vaquero in 45 Colt, awesome piece. But at the right price id love to have a colt look alike or clone in 357, just dont want to shell out alot of money.
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Old January 29, 2011, 03:19 PM   #4
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Don't think I have ever seen one. Would like a fairly cheap sa 45 colt as well. Is the finish nice on them? Interchangable grips?
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Old January 29, 2011, 06:56 PM   #5
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http://www.gunblast.com/WBell_HeritageBigBore.htm


I picked up one of their .22 Rough Riders just a few hours ago. For what it's worth, it looks and feels like a real solid gun. Can't wait to take it out to the range.
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Old January 29, 2011, 07:42 PM   #6
Jim March
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The Heritage "Big Bore" series is completely different than the rimfires. The rimfires are "pot metal", the large frame are likely finished about on par with a decent Italian SAA clone and made of similar metal. Metallurgy will be pretty good, likely 95% as good as a Ruger give or take a bit.
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Old January 30, 2011, 09:25 PM   #7
Bear Claw Chris
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Had this Big Bore in 45 Colt for awhile now, great gun.

With most 250gr cowboy loads, it's right on the sights at 15-20 yards, and hasn't given me one problem.



This target was from the very first time I shot it, and only the 3rd 5 shot group I fired, standing with no benchrest, using Ultramax Cowboy loads.

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Old January 30, 2011, 09:31 PM   #8
Jim March
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Any chance you could cock it and show us pics of the transfer bar system?

Also: can you confirm that this loads on the half-cock similar to a real Colt?
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Old January 30, 2011, 10:03 PM   #9
strong45side
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Thanks for the info guys, ive also been looking into Ubertis
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Old January 30, 2011, 10:13 PM   #10
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I have sold trucks loads of Heritages, and it is the one gun I have never sent back to the factory for any issues in 3 years of business.
i have shot the big bores, and they are accurate and feel like a good quality cowboy gun.
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Old January 30, 2011, 10:40 PM   #11
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Jim, did you look at the gunblast article? The second picture shows the cocked revolver with the transfer bar safety.
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Old January 30, 2011, 11:22 PM   #12
Jim March
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Ah. You're right.



Wow...looks very Ruger-ish. Frame mounted firing pin, transfer bar is NOT linked to the hammer...big and flat like a Ruger...huh.

Interesting.
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Old January 31, 2011, 12:12 AM   #13
Crazy88Fingers
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According to the article I posted from GunBlast, the hammer has three clicks (instead of the traditional four) and bringing it back to the first click frees up the cylinder for loading.

I suppose since the gun has a transfer bar they did away with the first safety click.
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Old January 31, 2011, 12:29 AM   #14
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Sounds strangely like an EAA/Weihrauch Big Bore Bounty Hunter. Except for being Italian, not German made.
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Old January 31, 2011, 02:10 AM   #15
Jim March
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Kinda. Except the Heritage/Pietta guns are Colt SAA near-clones like the NewVaq. The EAA German guns were oversize, closer to the Ruger "Old Vaquero". They came in 44Mag among other calibers, so that meant extra-beefy...yet...not really very refined.

No, the Heritage/Pietta guns are closest to a Beretta Stampede, but they seem to be using a more Ruger-ish transfer bar.

If they're $500 I'd rather have a Ruger. But at $300, even $350-$375, they'd be pretty damn tempting considering the good things I've heard about the EMF non-transfer-bar equivalents.

One other thing. The lowest cost variant of the Heritage/Pietta combo guns are the all-blue type. That's the one I'd look at. I would give the fake case colors a skip, and before I went with stainless I'd ask around on the SASS forums about the long-term durability of the Italian stainless guns...Uberti and particularly Pietta. Italian SA metallurgy has always been the weaker link, and getting stainless gun steel "right" isn't as easy as high-carbon blued. When S&W first got into stainless they didn't get it quite right either (we're talkin' 1960s and early '70s). They worked, just weren't as durable.

I'm using a blued steel gun as daily carry and it has that crappy Ruger fake-case-color system that Ruger has since abandoned because it tended to attract rust (ug). Yet I'm having no trouble keeping my gun running and clean. In a real marine or major-grade-rain environment (Seattle?), yeah, I'd go stainless.
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Old January 31, 2011, 07:51 AM   #16
Bear Claw Chris
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Jim, yes the transfer bar system is exactly like Rugers, I read somewhere that they may even pay Ruger a small "per gun" fee to use it, but don't really know if that's true or not.

These also do have to be placed on half-cock to load/unload.

Crazy88Fingers is correct, only 3 clicks and the first one is "half-cock" for loading.
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Old January 31, 2011, 11:34 AM   #17
Jim March
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No, the transfer bar patents are run out. Ruger's current variant has been around since 1973 and there's some even older. Hell, Charter Arms has been using something like that since the '60s and it goes back to...Iver Johnson I think, nineteen-o-something?
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Old January 31, 2011, 05:04 PM   #18
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I do recall reading Iver Johnson having a transfer bar on their break-top "safety automatics". The safety referred to the transfer bar, and the automatic came from the mechanism that automatically ejected the shells when you opened up the gun.
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Old January 31, 2011, 06:41 PM   #19
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I bought this just last year for $375, it was part of my "Obama Series" where I bought a new gun every month for the first year of his reign.





It's an American Western Arms/Turnbull Peacekeeper in 45LC. I don't have much interest in western guns but I always wanted a six shooter for the collection, but it had to be hardcore. Everytime I saw one it wasn't right, it was Stainless or 357 (or anything besides 45) or Ruger or had extra junk in the trunk. No spare parts in here.

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Old January 31, 2011, 06:44 PM   #20
Bear Claw Chris
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Man that is one nice sixgun!
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Old January 31, 2011, 06:51 PM   #21
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Yea but the horsey looks stupid. And by the way Jim, I dumped the rounds out just for you when I cocked it.
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Old January 31, 2011, 08:10 PM   #22
Jim March
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Under $400 for anything Turnbull has touched is WAY worth it. Not my cuppa tea but a beautiful gun.

Does that have AWA's coil main spring conversion?
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Old February 1, 2011, 05:11 PM   #23
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I don't know, I usually don't take 'em apart 'till they break. Old guys tell me it cocks smoother than any Colt they ever had though.
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Old February 1, 2011, 05:27 PM   #24
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Looks pretty flat to me, you did mean the mainspring right?

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Old February 1, 2011, 09:03 PM   #25
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Recently picked one up and is very well finished and fitted and smoother and tighter than my fine Colt. Shoots to point of aim at 71/2 yds as indicated with the top group in the orange in this target.



I bought a Ruger 44 Flat Top (new model) at the same time and other than being stronger it is not better in anyway I see in the short run.

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