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Old October 8, 2011, 09:36 PM   #1
dlbarr
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Right Choice for a Cap & Ball Revolver

Never had one of these before but thinking of a 1851 Navy Colt. which is superior, the Cimmaron or EMF? I note that EMF has both .36 & .44 while Cimmaron has only .36.

Any input would be appreciated. Thanks
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Old October 8, 2011, 11:36 PM   #2
Razor740
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Cimmaron and EMF are retailers...not manufacturers.
Cimmaron suposedly fine tunes and 'adjusts' the revolvers they retail.
I can't speak to the EMF line.
Major Manufacturers are Uberti and Pietta. (new)
Uberti's are generally more expensive than Pietta's.
Some folks feel Uberti quality is (marginally) better than Pietta
I have several Piettas, and all are of great quality.
The original 1851 was in .36 only.
The .44 is a modern "development" ?.. not historically "correct"...
Both are fun...
Me..being cheap.. I opt for the Piettas...
Hope this helps.
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Old October 9, 2011, 06:08 AM   #3
MJN77
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Uberti guns are the same size and shape as the original guns. The grip shape is also the same as an original Colt. The Pietta grip is not as curved. As for quality, both are good. I have had both and I like the feel and balance of the Uberti better. As for .36 or .44, that depends on how historically accurate you want to be. The 1851 navy revolver was only made in .36.
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Old October 9, 2011, 09:36 AM   #4
dlbarr
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I believe the EMF gun is mf'd by Pietta and is approx <$70 less than the Cimmaron.....sound right to you guys?
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Old October 9, 2011, 09:53 AM   #5
Doc Hoy
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DL

Coupla things.

If you are just starting out, you might want to consider a Remington instead of a Colt. The open top design of the Colt makes them a little more finnicky than the Remington. So for a starting BP revolver shooter the Remington presents fewer variables.

Having said that, I started with a revolver exactly like you are describing (35 years ago) and it was a long time before I added a Remington to my accumulation. So much for my advice.

Regarding the choice of the source of the revolver, you may want to consider a Pietta from Cabela's. The price is right and you may find that the additional tweaking you get from Cimmaron to be not worth the additional expense. I do acknowledge that there are those among us who swear by Cimmaron and I cannot dispute that they are fine revolvers.

Cabela's has the steel frame Remington on sale right now and I just got an ad bragging about five dollar shipping on orders over $150. I just ordered one for 179.00 delivered but I think that is up to $184.00. They are back ordered so if you need sudden service, you may have to stick with the Colt.

If you are set on the 1851 pattern in .36 you are certainly in good company.
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Old October 9, 2011, 09:59 AM   #6
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Pay no shipping on purchases of $150 or more with this Cabela's code until Oct 31: WOCTOBER
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Old October 10, 2011, 12:16 AM   #7
dlbarr
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Thanks Gents, I'll take a look over at Cabela's.
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Old October 10, 2011, 08:33 AM   #8
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1 Cabela's

2 1858 Remington

You'll be fine, soon addicted and buying more.
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Old October 10, 2011, 09:48 AM   #9
Noz
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Be aware that there is a different "feel" betwqeen Colt style and Remington style guns. There is also a different "feel" between the various Colts. The 49s don't feel just like the 51s which don't feel like the 60s which don't feel ike the 61s etc.
Try them all. One of the styles or manufacturers will call to you.

Me I've owned 51s and 60s in the Colt style and 58 Remingtons. All I own now are Pietta 1860s.
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Old October 10, 2011, 11:13 AM   #10
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dlbar,

Doc Hoy, Madcratebuilder, and Noz have all given good advice. I'm a dyed in the wool Colt pattern revolver afficionado. I've had Remingtons in the past; but they just did not "Feel Right" in my hand when shooting in CAS Competition. I prefer the 2nd Generation Colt and Uberti grip shape over the Piettas. Try (handle) as many different revovers as you can before deciding which will be your first one. Regardless of which make, model, or color you start with, once you start making smoke, you'll be buying more.
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Last edited by Fingers McGee; October 10, 2011 at 11:05 PM. Reason: correct incorrect spelling due to fat fingers trying to operate keyboard
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Old October 10, 2011, 11:19 AM   #11
zullo74
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Fingers,

I hope not......

Quote:
I'm a died in the wool Colt pattern revolver afficionado.
.....because the phrase is 'dyed in the wool'.

http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/dyed-in-the-wool
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Old October 10, 2011, 12:06 PM   #12
dlbarr
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Well, I think what I'm inclined to do is buy the Pietta '51 Navy in .44. I like historically correct stuff as well, which this is not, but it's $129. And for my first foray into this bailiwick, this is an economical entre.

Of course, it won't be satisfactory for the long term and there will necessarily be future purchases of a more serious and superior nature. But who among us ever believes that their NEXT gun will be their FINAL gun acquisition? This choice will allow me to get my feet wet and find out what this is all about. I'll report back....

Thanks for your input - I'm still open to more since this is just the first among many purchases.
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Old October 10, 2011, 12:25 PM   #13
dlbarr
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One more thing - I read one of the reviews on this brass-framed revolver and somebody said that the brass s-t-r-e-c-h-e-s with use, particularly with heavier loads. I would not really expect to be using such loads myself, but does anyone here concur with that opinion?

Inquiring minds want to know.... Thanks
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Old October 10, 2011, 02:19 PM   #14
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robhof

I know brass frame owners who've owned them for years and they still shoot fine, but all of them have stuck strictly with light loads, yes they will stretch and the blast shield will become imprinted with the back of the cylinder. I stick with steel and can occasionally shoot max loads and do it worry free.
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Old October 10, 2011, 03:01 PM   #15
Doc Hoy
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If you shoot much you will likely wind up with a loading press.

If you start with a brass frame revolver, you may want to hasten the purchase of the press and start loading outside of the revolver right off the bat.

I am one (perhaps the only one) who believes that you put as much stress on the arbor of a Colt revolver during the loading process when loading with the lever as you do while shooting it.

As robhof says, keep the loads light and you should be okay.

I would also advise you to start with .451 balls and see if you can shave a ring all the way around with those. You may have to go to .454s but if you can shoot .451s it will put less strain on the arbor while loading them (until you get a press.)

Use bullets with a high lead percentage. High lead means softer bullets and easier loading (until you get a press.)
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Old October 10, 2011, 04:52 PM   #16
dlbarr
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Doc, your point is well taken but looking at the photo of the gun, it appears that the arbor is made of steel rather than brass as it's not part of the frame. Am I misunderstanding your reasoning for using a press?
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Old October 10, 2011, 05:05 PM   #17
zullo74
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You are misunderstanding. That steel arbor is screwed into a brass frame! it will loosen at the threaded joint. I have had to tighten the arbor on my ASM steel framed 1860 due to loading alloyed lead balls over the years. Now I load the cylinders off the guns using a press.
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Old October 10, 2011, 11:06 PM   #18
Fingers McGee
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Correction made Zullo. the y and i are close enough together that my fat fingers struck again.
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Old October 11, 2011, 03:40 AM   #19
Doc Hoy
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Zullo got it

If you load the cylinder with a press out of the pistol and shoot loads that are right for the frame you will have little or no trouble.

Another danger in revolvers is imprinting the web shape of the back of the cylinder in the recoil shield of the frame. I had an excellent photo of a frame I picked up in which the imprint was probably as much as 1/32 inch deep. Very noticable. It is easier to imprint a brass frame than a steel one.

In general terms, the same practices that save the arbor, also reduce imprinting of the shield.
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Old October 11, 2011, 03:57 AM   #20
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I'd go with the .454 balls made from pure or very close to pure. You shave more lead from them giving you a better surface for the rifling to grip plus you don't have to worry about them moving forward under recoil. Yeah brass will stretch.
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Old October 11, 2011, 06:36 AM   #21
eastbank
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i started shooting BP in the early 60,s with a civil war .58 rifle and a 1860 army in 44, both repo,s. i shot them to death,being young i tried to make magums out of them. i now have several dozen BP rifles and revolvers and one shotgun, but now i seldom fire hot loads out of any of them. three of my favorite BP ruger revolvers. eastbank.

Last edited by eastbank; January 24, 2012 at 09:27 AM.
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Old October 11, 2011, 09:31 AM   #22
Doc Hoy
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Eastbank

Good lookin shootin irons.
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Old October 11, 2011, 10:05 AM   #23
madcratebuilder
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Quote:
Well, I think what I'm inclined to do is buy the Pietta '51 Navy in .44. I like historically correct stuff as well, which this is not, but it's $129. And for my first foray into this bailiwick, this is an economical entre.
They are good shooters, I bought one several years ago to use as a trainer for new guys. Just keep the powder charge at 22grs or less and it should last a long, long time.

This one has had several hundred rounds fired by assorted folks. Still looks like new. How do you like the color case brass

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Old October 11, 2011, 10:41 AM   #24
ZVP
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I have both the Uberti and the Piettia. In my opnion the Uberti is a better finished piece however the Piettias are an excellent value and are finely crafted. Both will last a long time!
The .36 Cal is the correct caliber for the Colt-type Navy and is more than adequate for targets or "social Work" as Hickock clearly shown!
Frankily I prefer the .36 in that frame.
I also have a pair of .44 Remingtons and would advise that you pick the 5 1/2" bbl model just for it's handling qualitys! The power is awesome! Function is flawless.
Colt-types sometimes have Cap feeding problems and often loose caps or spent fragments get into the action. You will develop handling pratices to help the gun function as you shoot it. I find thatr not babying the gun (cocking it quickly) feeds caps and flings fragments clear of the action for me.
As time passes and gun control nuts get their way our guns will be more endangered so get one soon so you can enjoy it!
JMHO,
ZVP
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Old October 11, 2011, 11:00 AM   #25
dlbarr
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"As time passes and gun control nuts get their way our guns will be more endangered so get one soon so you can enjoy it!"

Yes, I live in WA state and Cabela's will not ship directly to my address - the gun has to go through FFL dealer. Now, go figure, I talked to Dixie Gun Works and they'll ship directly to me.
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