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Old May 6, 2011, 01:56 PM   #1
ZVP
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Piettia 1862 Police first test

With great suprise, the arrival of the Container from Italy arrived at Cabelas early and they shipped my revolver earlier than quoted!
The well oiled revolver was removed from the plastic bag and once wiped down a date of "CF"(2010) was observed. The well blued 5" barrel, fluted cylinderand Brass backstrap really set-off the asthetics of this 1862 style revolver! Fit and finish of the revolver left a few spots with sharp edges (like the front gripframe and sharp heel of the grip), these points will need some attention but did not cause any real detrimental problems with firing the revolver. Case hardening colors were bright and complimentary to eachother. Colors range from a Light Yellow to patches of Light and Dark Blue with patches of Tan, all in all, a pleasing color match! The 6 shot cylinder and full sized 1862 .36 caliber frame aren't period correct but have much to say for themselves!
This model is simply a full sized .36 caliber gun with a short barrel.
Just as a side-note, this revolver is very similar in overall size to the 5 1/2" 1858 Remington. OAL is nearly exact and even though the Remington has a enclosed frame, the height is really not that much bigger. Both cut-down revolvers even though they are different calibers, make for a nice pair!
Manufacturers suggested Powder charges range from 18 to 25 grains depending on which pamphlet you refer to. Both pamphlets cover maintance and operation with clear warnings for safetys-sake throughout.
For the inital tests I chose to finish off a can of Pyrodex and get to real Black Powder next...
At the range, I opted for the lowest charge of 18 Grains of Pyrodex for the first cylinder, topped off with Pistol Wads and a .375 lead ball and Remington #11 Caps. This load produced a very light discharge with more of a "Puff" than a bang. Encountering no difficultys, I moved up to my favorite charge of 22 grains of Pyrodex with the components as before and got a familliar BOOM with mild recoil and tight 7 yard groups! For effrect, I fired a few rounds to the dirt backstop and noted the quick speed of the .36 caliber ball impacts! The 5" barrel is not detremental to velocity and it makes the gun handle nicely! I didn't have a chrony available so I can't quote velocities but the revolver preforms much like a full size barrel.
Sights forced the balls to impact high on paper but they can be brought down by filing and deepening the Hammer notch. Without swapping the front sight for a taller one, you won't have a 25 yard POI hitter though. Hold-under estimation should be easy to cope with and I don't anticipate any problems learning to work with the gun at all!
I plan to modify the gripshape as I had done with my Piettia Confederate .44, this being a rounding of the bottom of the frontstrap and the same with the sharp edge of the revolver's backstrap heel. The mod is easy and results in a comfortable, hand conforming grip. I don't know why Piettia continues with the sharp corners down there, but it seems to be a mark of the manufacturer. I will also go over the edges all over the revolver and deburr or slightly round-off all sharp edges. This small but important function makes the gun feel "softer" in the hand and really enhances the shootability overall. I was once told a "Good Gun" feels like an old bar of soap, and I have done my best to try and follow that advice as it works!
Being on aq buget, finding a proper holster for this revolver might be somewhat of a problem. Cabela's offers a Snap-down Californian Slim Jim type holster for the '62 but since they didn't use snaps back in the day, I am torn as to buying one for it. Cabelas does offer a couple more period correct holsters but I would need to cut them down to fit the 5" BBL. One good thing is that all the mentioned holsters come in Brown and it matches the rest of my holster gear. I'll work something out... I even tried the '62 Police in my Vaquero's Texas Sholder Holster rig, but it's frame is somewhat small for the larger framed leather. A sholder-rig might be the ideal carry-rig for this gun?
Generally speaking, I really like this revolver! You get a full power full frame .36 in a compact quick handling size! I felt that the low cost ($229) was a bargan as I always wanted a short barreled .36 belt pistol but never felt comfortable with the work involved in chopping down a full size gun. It has a nicely fluted cylinder which really sets off the look of the piece! I think it has a very personalised look and feel about it and my little smoothing-up should finish the "feel" off. Overall, the revolver has a unique aura to it and I'm sure it will find a very fond place in my little battery!
ZVP
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Old May 6, 2011, 03:08 PM   #2
junkman_01
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Yeah, it's unique, just like every other one they make.
I'm glad you like it and that was a good report!
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Old May 7, 2011, 12:49 AM   #3
ZVP
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Thanks Junkman!
Yea they're each unique OK! Just different enough to make them individuals to the owners. We each have a certain "take" on the subtile differences of our own guns.
I really like this little .36 C&B!
It "fits" and exceeds the parmiters that I set forth for the type of revolver I wanted. The 6 shot capicity is a nice suprise and the one extra is always nice! I wanted a faster handling barrel to gain a little advantage swinging the muzzle from target to target, be they steel, paper, or tin cans. I like the added strength of a full size "Navy" frame over a "Pocket" size frame. This affords a possibility of using full Navy style chamber charges with no damage to the close tolerances that sometimes get spread open with a "Pocket" type of frame. It is also made of Steel rather than Brass which was usually the case with other brands of the "Police" models I have inspected. It's definately a lot more gun than the one it replaces.
I don't mind the slightly larger frame dimensions as this gun was never intended to be literally a "Pocket" gun. I'd origonally intentioned it to be a small Holster gun. In fact it is actually a replacement for a too soon, worn-out Cimmaron Plinkerton which is a full sized .22lr "Peacemaker" sized revolver. The additional power, caliber and propellant type of my new Piettia Police model just broadens the usefullness of the revolver! It now functiones as a Plinker, Target Pistol, and stretching it's use, a realistic Personal Defense gun.
For nearly the exact amount of cash, I got a whole lot more gun! As a direct replacement purchase, The Piettia is much more versitile.
I am really pleased with my purchase and aI expect to get a lot of use from the little revolver. It will make a good trail companion, a definate conversation starter and snake repellant as a fishing companion (in a sholder holster). and generally a good "club gun" to spend hours target shooting with.
Overall, as I guess you can tell, I am very pleased with my Unique (?) new gun!
ZVP
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Old May 8, 2011, 12:25 PM   #4
jcowan
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I messed with mine a little

http://i1135.photobucket.com/albums/...861sheriff.jpg
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Old May 8, 2011, 02:48 PM   #5
BrittB
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Nice!
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Old May 9, 2011, 05:07 PM   #6
ZVP
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jcowan
A real beauty!
I notice from your picture that your Model does not have the Fluted Cylinder that mine does. This is the only difference I note between our guns.
Do you remember who the manufacturer was?
I REALLY like this revolver! It is near perfect sized and the 6 shot capacity is always nice. The slightly larger full size .36 frame makes for a sweet handling piece!
ZVP
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Old May 15, 2011, 06:08 PM   #7
jcowan
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ZVP, sorry I did not get back, my job is kicking my butt for a few weeks. Mine is a Pietta that I stripped off the bluing with vinegar and defarbed. I antiqued it and used Van's blue to put a little blueing on it. I bought a spare cylinder from Cabelas for an 1851 Navy and did the same to that. It is my favorite gun to shoot and I like the look of it.
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Old May 18, 2011, 12:04 PM   #8
ZVP
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No problem about replies, family, work,and rest come first always and then the Forums...
Your gun sounds neat! I bet it really sticks out like an origonal.
These are really good shooters! The .36 caliber makes them really cheap to shoot too. Lead and Powder costs are reduced and the BOOM is still there! I just bought another pound of Pyrodex (BP is hard to come by here) and a couple boxes of .375 balls. Yea I have plans...
ZVP
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Old May 18, 2011, 06:36 PM   #9
jcowan
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This was my first BP gun (they multiply like rabbits) and it is still my favorite shooting gun. The first shot that I ever took, I hit a 1' x1' steel plate at 65 yards. It took me plenty more shots to hit it again, but it was a lucky start. I seem to like the 5 1/2" barrels. I have a Remington 1858, an 1851 an 1862 pocket and the 1861 all in 5 1/2". The only one that has a full size barrel is my 1860. I also have an 1862 pocket with a 4 1/2" barrel and a Wells Fargo. I just like the short look.
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