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Old October 3, 2011, 02:46 PM   #1
Tanker6
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.36 caliber 1858 Remingtons.....

I shoot Cowboy Action Shooting/SASS. For a long time, I've been eye-balling cap and ball pistols in order to shoot the Frontiersman category. Well, I shoot with my two kiddos, so their needs have always come before mine. Well, my wait is over.

At an annual shoot last weekend, they, like most of these, raffle away guns. I bought tickets and dropped every last one of 'em in the coffee cans for the two sets of cap and ball pistols to be given away. Nope, I didn't win.

But my good friend and shooting pard did......and in what I've come to call "the greatest act of indescribable kindness and generosity," he GAVE them to me. Right there in front of everybody. I'm speechless....and that's hard to do.

So, I am now the proud owner of two 1858 Remingtons in .36 caliber. Of course, I've not been looking at these pistols as my first purchase, so I know nothing about them.

I need some advice on the specifics. First, what size ball? Next, what size caps? Lastly, some good load data for real black powder?

What I've learned tells me the answers are .375, No. 10's, and 20 grns, but I'll bow to the esteemed and learned group who frequent here.

Thanks in advance!
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Old October 3, 2011, 07:14 PM   #2
mykeal
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Those are pretty good answers for starters. The only comment I'd have is that cap sizes are a bit of a crap shoot. Specifying "No. 10" without also specifying the brand doesn't help much because sizes aren't standardized. Remington No. 10's are not the same size as CCI No. 10's (and Winchester caps are just rebranded CCI's). So the question becomes CCI or Remington? I'm going to guess at Remington, but it's only a $5 investment, so you might just get both and see what fits.
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Old October 3, 2011, 10:59 PM   #3
Fingers McGee
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Tanker, I've got a Uberti .36 Remington and it likes a .380 roundball, 20 to 25 grains of fffg, and a #10 Remington cap. Either load will take out a knockdown; but the 25 grain loading does it with a little more authority. The Uberti chambers are usually - but not always - a little looser than the Piettas. A Pietta will probably work fine with .375s.

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Old October 3, 2011, 11:02 PM   #4
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Some of the 36s like the .380 ball which requires casting your own form a LEE mold. If you find the .375 too small, also get the LEE 130gr conical double cavity mold. My Remmie Navies like it. It shoots a little harder than the round ball and 20 grains FFFg makes it a nice thumper. I have two Euroarms NMA Navies that have a smaller frame but any Remmie is a good Remmie. They will shoot all day without gumming up like my Uberti 44 NMAs.
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Old October 3, 2011, 11:37 PM   #5
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I like .380's in my Piettas
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Old October 4, 2011, 03:06 AM   #6
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Track of the Wolf sells .380 cast balls:

http://www.trackofthewolf.com/Catego...=25&styleID=58
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Old October 4, 2011, 12:16 PM   #7
Tanker6
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Thanks for the replies. And yes, I was thinking Remington #10 caps. I don't think I've even seen any other brand of caps for sale locally, although I do appreciate knowing that a #10 is not a #10 is not a #10 information.

The Owner's Manual information (which I just read last night) says .375 ball, so I'll probably start with that (they are Piettas with 6.5" barrels). I'm assuming (which means I look for your collective input if I'm wrong ) that so long as I'm shaving some of the ball off when ramming, that I'm ok. If it ain't shavin' some off, then I'll switch to .380.

Fingers, thanks for the input since I know you already shoot Frontiersman. I'll probably be a "wuss" and run 20 grn loads until I have that first knockdown fail to fall with a hit. While I know that I have several "lessons" to learn in transitioning from smokeless to BP, I'm hoping that my "education" from shooting duelist so far will translate without losing too much time. My biggest hurdle right now is mastering the hammered double. I've been shooting my daughter's '97 (I actually took 2nd in '97 speed shotgun last weekend at Ft. Parker's side match), and my efforts with the hammered double......well, I guess there's another reason to call it a "double." I think I have more than two thumbs so far when loading it.

Of course, I have some other stuff to buy in order to make the transition to Frontiersman. My daughter and I currently share a rifle, so I need to acquire a new rifle for her (our used '66 has had many BP rounds through it, so it seems the logical thing to do), and I'll need some new leather -- those 6.5" Remmies don't fit in my Slim Jims made for my 4 3/4" '71 Open Tops. I'll get there though. Until then, I need to shoot these Remmies some to get the feel for 'em.

Thanks again for the responses.

Tanker 6 a/k/a Chickahominy Charlie

Last edited by Tanker6; October 4, 2011 at 02:57 PM.
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Old October 4, 2011, 04:01 PM   #8
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Go forth and make fire and smoke Charlie Sounds like you got a good plan. Too bad you can't make Comin At Cha. This'll be my first year there.
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Old October 5, 2011, 02:55 PM   #9
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I have question: Are the reproduction.44 & .36 Remmies the same size other than barrel length or are the Navies actually a smaller overall size?
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Old October 5, 2011, 03:46 PM   #10
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My Lyman .36 Remington is physically smaller.
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Old October 5, 2011, 05:35 PM   #11
Hellgate
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My EUROARMS 36 cal Remingtons are physically smaller than any other 36 Remington I have sen BUT it is the same size frame as the Euroarms 44 Remington (other than barrel length). The other Remingtons are pretty much a standard 44 with a shorter barrel. I have heard but have no proof that an earlier 36 Rem Navy was on a smaller frame like the original.
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Old October 5, 2011, 10:20 PM   #12
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Quote:
I have question: Are the reproduction.44 & .36 Remmies the same size other than barrel length or are the Navies actually a smaller overall size?
Depends on who made them and when.
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Old October 5, 2011, 10:40 PM   #13
Fingers McGee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arcticap
Track of the Wolf sells .380 cast balls:

http://www.trackofthewolf.com/Catego...=25&styleID=58
Log Cabin Sport Shop in Lodi, Ohio also sells cast .380. They're good people & make a good product.

http://www.logcabinonline.com/index1.html

Of course, TOTW is also good people with good products.
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Old October 18, 2011, 06:02 PM   #14
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Looks like you got a good deal. My next buy will be .36 cal Remington. I figure having 3 58s in .44 it's time to check out the .36s. I been hearing good things about them from the people that own them. I'm glad to hear you walked away with two. You should still be jumping up and down.
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Old October 18, 2011, 07:52 PM   #15
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I never really wanted a .36 til I got one now I have three.
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Old October 19, 2011, 03:41 AM   #16
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Tanker

I like the original story.

It is the kind of thing that makes true friendships.
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Old October 21, 2011, 12:26 AM   #17
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I have an Uberti-made .36 Remington made in 1973 with target adjustable sights. Purchased it a couple of years ago off a shooter online.
Not very accurate. Groups of 4 to 5 inches at a measured 25 yards from a benchrest.
I experimented with all kinds of loads: Goex FFFG black powder, Pyrodex, Hodgdon 777, .380 balls, .375 balls, Lee .36 conical in .375 diameter, Lee conical in .380 diameter (a discontinued mould I picked up like-new from Ebay, Remington and CCI caps, grease over the ball, hard felt wads lubricated with a stiff lubricant, ad nauseum ...

Then one day, cleaning it, I realized how shallow the rifling was. Very shallow. I suspect this is the reason it shoots so poorly. Conversely, my 8-year-old Uberti-made Remington .44 will put six projectiles into a 1-1/2 to 2-inch circle all day long at the same 25 yards. This, using .454 balls or Lee .450-inch conicals, Goex FFFG and Gatofeo No. 1 lube in a felt wad (with balls) or in the bullet grooves.

My Pietta-made .36 Remington, made a few years ago, is not much better, though it's grooves are obviously deeper.

I've tried the Lee .36 conical in a variety of Colt and Remington designs. Not found it particularly accurate, and certainly not as accurate as a .380 ball. Yet, the Lee .44 conical is quite accurate in all my .44s. Go figure.

All my .36s prefer a .380 ball over a conical bullet. The most inaccurate conical I've tried is the Buffalo Bullet: groups of 6 to 12 inches from a benchrest at 25 yards, depending upon the revolver.

Were I you, I'd stick with balls of .380 diameter. Gad Custom Cartridge has them at $6 per 100. Go to gadcustomcartridges.com for a wide variety of bullets and balls at good prices.

I gave up on .375 inch balls years ago when I found .380 more accurate in all my .36s.

The Remington design .36s will hold more powder than the Colt .36s. I don't have my notes handy, but I'm thinking about 30 grains of FFFG under a ball, with greased felt wad, compared to 24 grs. for the 1851 Navy.

The Remington has a shorter rammer than the 1851, which may make it difficult or impossible to seat a ball or conical on light or medium charges. You can make a "cheater stick" by using a short length of 3/8 dowel on top of the ball or conical, for the rammer to bear against. Or you can use extra felt wads or corn meal as a filler between powder and projectile.
I much prefer corn meal; Cream of Wheat does not compress and is not as forgiving if you get a little too much in the chamber.

If you use a lubricated felt wad under the ball, there is no need to put grease over it. Lubricated wads are less messy. I'm not a fan of the dry lubricant of Wonder Wads; it doesn't keep fouling as soft as I like. Soak your Wonder Wads in melted lard, SPG, Lyman Black Gold or the homemade lubricant named after me: Gatofeo No. 1 (search the net for the recipe).

The most accurate .36 I own is my Colt 2nd generation 1851 Navy: 2" groups at 25 yards, sometimes a little less. Perhaps I'm cursed, but I can't get my Remington .36s to shoot that well. Yet, my Remington .44 does even better.
Go figure.

Sounds like you have a heck of a friend there. Your son should take it as a lesson in kindness and charity, to remember all his days. If you take care of those Remingtons, he'll have them to prompt his memory for decades.
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Old November 22, 2011, 07:03 PM   #18
Tanker6
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Ok, I guess I should provide an update.....

Shot my first SASS match in Frontiersman last weekend. I used my new '58 remmies with .375 balls, Goex Holy Black and Remington #10 caps. I did cheat just a bit since I shot smokeless in my hammered double, but I didn't have anything but plastic wads and I didn't feel like trying to scrub plastic out of shotgun bores afterwards.....

I learned a few things. #1 - I really enjoyed it. #2 - I need a capper. I can charge both pistols in the time it takes me to cap just one. PIA. #3 - Caps that fall into your shooting hand palm burn. #4 - My stage scores went up about 30 seconds per stage (from low 30's to low 60's). #5 - DO NOT squirt moose milk on the cylinder faces during the match to help clean up the pistols. The moose milk gets in the cylinder and you have 2-3 that won't go boom! (I recapped the uncooperative cylinders and they fired AFTER the stage ). #6 - I didn't have a pistol miss....much to my surprise....unless you count the two that caps fell off or didn't go boom as per #5 above. #7 - Did I mention that I really enjoyed it?
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