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Old November 9, 2011, 02:33 PM   #1
Col. Mosby
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Navy Arms 1860 Army

FYI, Dixie Gun Works is selling Navy Arms Pietta 1860 Army .44s for 195.00. Since it seems to be the best price I have seen recently I thought I would pass this info. along just in case anyone was in the market or leaving hints for Santa Claus.
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Old November 9, 2011, 03:04 PM   #2
RedBowTies88
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nice deal, any idea on what kinda muzzle velocity you would be looking at running these at max load?
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Old November 10, 2011, 12:12 PM   #3
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The muzzle velocity depends on a number of things like powder type, ball size, type of cap, etc. Lyman shows a FFFg load that has a muzzle velocity of 995 f.p.s. I have no way to measure and confirm that, so I don't know if that is so or not. I am sure there are some folks on this site who can shed more light on the subject.
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Old November 10, 2011, 06:54 PM   #4
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A much more relevant, and in my opinion, reasonable, question would be what kind of accuracy one could expect using the best (optimum) load.

What good is muzzle velocity at max load if you can't hit what you're aiming at?
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Old November 10, 2011, 10:07 PM   #5
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AMEN !!!!!!
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Old November 11, 2011, 04:31 AM   #6
arcticap
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedBowTies88
any idea on what kinda muzzle velocity you would be looking at running these at max load?
The muzzle velocity depends on the powder, projectiles and/or wads being used as well as the performance of the individual gun.

Here's some excerpts of Uberti 1860 Army chronograph readings posted by mec:

Quote:
28-30 grains with round ball is a very satisfactory load whether you use goex FFFg, pyrodex p or Swiss FFFg. Mine works well with up to 35 grains and will hold 49 grains with considerable compression. At 40 grains, my particular revolver will display hammer blow back and rough functioning with Swiss or Pyrodex.
(all charges thrown from a measure calibrated for goex fffg. The actual weight of Swiss is greater while pyrodex is much lighter and compresses more readily)

Loads 140-141 Grain Ball Velocity Spread/6rounds

35 Grains Goex FFFg Second Generation Colt 855 37
35 Grains Swiss Uberti 1031 48
40 Grains Goex FFFg 992 34
40 grains Goex FFFg with Wonder Wad 942 30
40 Grains Swiss FFFg 1042 49
40 Grains Swiss FFFg with Wonder Wad 1055 80
35Gr/Vol. Pyrodex P 1047 116
35 Gr/Vol Pyrodex P with Wonder Wad 1055 69
35 Gr/Vol. Pyrodex P different Day 1046 77

http://www.thehighroad.org/showpost....75&postcount=2
Quote:
Originally Posted by mykeal
What good is muzzle velocity at max load if you can't hit what you're aiming at?
The high velocity loads should be accurate enough for self-defense, self-protection, hunting and recreational combat shooting at moderate to close distances.
Every gun is different and revolvers can also be accurized and modified to hold slightly more powder, and to work with a variety of projectiles.

Last edited by arcticap; November 11, 2011 at 05:02 AM.
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Old November 11, 2011, 10:15 AM   #7
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I'm new to the black powder world and was just curious about the velocities achieveable vs. more modern revolvers.
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Old November 11, 2011, 07:53 PM   #8
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Quote:
The high velocity loads should be accurate enough for self-defense, self-protection, hunting and recreational combat shooting at moderate to close distances.
I disagree. That is not my experience.
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Old November 11, 2011, 07:59 PM   #9
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35 grain loads are pretty accurate in mine and they've been killing people for 150 years. However I don't think I'd want to stake my life on one, plus there's a fire hazard if fired indoors and I really don't think I'd want to hunt with one.
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Old November 15, 2011, 02:30 AM   #10
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plus there's a fire hazard if fired indoors
That's it! I'm taking a bunch of tissue paper with me next time I go to the range with my cap-and-balls. I highly doubt that a momentary flame will produce enough heat for long enough to start combustion of everyday household items. Keep the kerosene and gas cans in the shed and I'd think you'd be fine.
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Old November 15, 2011, 06:30 AM   #11
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I'll admit the chance is slim but it is there. Burning embers that last for a few feet. Bed linen, curtains etc. It is possible.
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Old November 15, 2011, 06:54 AM   #12
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I seem to recall this discussion in a previous thread.

We spoke about the fact that in the Kostner movie; "Wyatt Earp", Masterson's brother's vest or shirt catches fire from a point blank shot Fired from a revolver.

The discussion centered around how realistic that would be.

I don't recall how it came out but I do recall it was an interesting thread.
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Old November 15, 2011, 07:47 AM   #13
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I would say it is absolutely possible after my buddy caught this picture of my 1858 Remmy in action. I started wearing eye protection after seeing this.

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Old November 15, 2011, 08:23 PM   #14
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That's a momentary flash. It takes a more sustained fire to start most materials on fire. I suppose if one is using felt wads it would be much more likely to create a smoldering ember that could start a fire.
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Old November 17, 2011, 12:51 PM   #15
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Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by arcticap
The high velocity loads should be accurate enough for self-defense, self-protection, hunting and recreational combat shooting at moderate to close distances.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mykeal
I disagree. That is not my experience.

Voodoochile posted that with his reamed chambers, he was able to fire a 5.5" group using 40 grains of Goex fffg and round balls at 20 yards from his 5.5" Remmy, and he fired a 4" group with both round balls and 220 grain Lee conicals using 35 grains.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Voodoochile Post #1
Ballistics:
Chronograph was placed 10' in front of the muzzle to get these results.

Bullet = .457 143 grain Cast Round Ball.
Powder = Goex FFFg black powder.
Primer = Remington #11
5-1/2” Barrel Average Ballistics.
40gr. Volume = 916 fps. 266 ft. Lbs. 5.5” group @ 20 yards & Violent.
35gr. Volume = 838 fps. 222 ft. Lbs. OK punch with 4” grouping @ 20 yards.
30gr. Volume = 754 fps. 180 ft. Lbs. little recoil with 2.5” grouping @ 20 yards.
25gr. Volume = 667 fps. 141 ft. Lbs. almost not there but with having to use a wad my groups opened up to 3.2" @ 20 yards.

Bullet = .456 220 grain Cast Lee conical bullet.
Powder = Goex FFFg black powder.
Primer = Remington #11
5-1/2” Barrel Average Ballistics.
35gr. Volume = 745 fps. 270 ft. lbs. No room, Violent, & 5” grouping @ 20 yards.
30gr. Volume = 672 fps. 220 ft. lbs. Recoil OK, Decent group of 3” @ 20 yards.

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthrea...ighlight=lever

Last edited by arcticap; November 17, 2011 at 01:15 PM.
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Old November 17, 2011, 03:56 PM   #16
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Voodoochile's data contains what I consider to be proof of the loss of accuracy resulting from high velocity loads:

40gr. Volume = 916 fps. 266 ft. Lbs. 5.5” group @ 20 yards & Violent.
30gr. Volume = 754 fps. 180 ft. Lbs. little recoil with 2.5” grouping @ 20 yards.

Going from 30 grains to 40 grains MORE THAN DOUBLES the group size AND introduces the additional problem of violent recoil. This mirrors my experience, and, I claim, illustrates the folly of full chamber loads.

While some will perhaps claim that a 5 1/2" group at 20 yards is sufficient accuracy, that's missing the point entirely. Voodoochile's prowess at 20 yards (2 hand hold standing, I believe) is admirable and not typical. I submit that most of us won't achieve a 2 1/2" group at 20 yards with 30 grains, and thus the effect of going to a full chamber load (more than doubling the group size) will be even greater, leading to much more than 5 1/2" groups. Not acceptable for any of the endeavors suggested.

And even if one was proficient enough to achieve those results, would you really go hunting with a load that was HALF as accurate as your best load? You now have to reduce your one shot range a great deal.

I suggest you've provided data that proves my point: full chamber (your 'high velocity') loads are generally not acceptable.
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Old November 17, 2011, 07:25 PM   #17
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While I can't cite as much data....

...when I chronied my Walker I found loads were accurate up to forty grains. Beyond that I could get about and additional 100 feet per second but the groups were larger.

I reasoned that the system becomes unstable above what might be called the optimum load.

BUT

I was never able to cypher out what made the system unstable. I began to wonder if it is what is going on just after the ball leaves the barrel that is creating the problem.

Are there accepted theories or perhaps proven facts that explain this?
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Old November 18, 2011, 06:40 AM   #18
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'Unstable' is perhaps a bit of an overstatement, although it conveys a good impression of what's happening.

I don't have a detailed hypothesis, but consider the following:

First, the same thing happens with loads lower than the optimum - accuracy, as measured by group size diminishes, although not at the same rate.

Second, the optimum load can and does vary with each individual gun, although within 5 grain increments many will have the same optimum load. I believe this is due to barrel dynamics, which are very unpredictable and can vary greatly between examples of the same design and manufacture.

Third, there are technique issues that can affect the optimum load results, so that what works one time won't work the next time because the technique was changed - generally, this is the amount of compression used.

Notwithstanding all of the above, I think the most important characteristic that causes accuracy to decrease at maximum load is rifling; I believe the projectile is pushed faster than the rifling can accept. Other variables, such as the projectile alloy, depth and shape of the rifling, etc. affect this so it's not something that a broad generalization can explain, however.

And no, I know of no test data aimed at explaining the phenomenon, although I've done lots of my own testing confirming it exists.

Anyway, that's the best I can do on one cup of coffee while also attempting to keep the livestock from destroying the homestead while SWMBO recovers from a cold. Perhaps a dedicated thread on the subject would be interesting some day.
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Old November 18, 2011, 07:27 AM   #19
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Thanks, "M"

Even though I am a casual shooter, this kind of thing interests me.

I have developed a theory of why the Colt's shoot high which supplements the intentional design theory. Can't test it because I don't have the equipment.

But it is not for this thread.
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Old November 18, 2011, 07:53 AM   #20
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Quote:
That's a momentary flash. It takes a more sustained fire to start most materials on fire. I suppose if one is using felt wads it would be much more likely to create a smoldering ember that could start a fire.
Then why is it documented that small arms fire started several woods fires during the Civil War?
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Old November 18, 2011, 08:30 AM   #21
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Quote:
small arms fire started several woods fires during the Civil War?
That is useful information.
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Old November 18, 2011, 09:43 AM   #22
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I know that it's common knowledge that the fires during the Battle of the Wilderness were caused by the intense small arms fire in the dense forest, but the actual reports of the conflagrations place blame on "exploding shells" and cooking fires that were still burning during the fighting. That certainly makes sense, particularly since the fighting occurred in the springtime.

There are probably other examples of fires during battles that I don't know about, though.
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Old November 18, 2011, 11:20 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedBowTies88
nice deal, any idea on what kinda muzzle velocity you would be looking at running these at max load?
Quote:
Originally Posted by mykeal
What good is muzzle velocity at max load if you can't hit what you're aiming at?
Quote:
Originally Posted by mykeal
I suggest you've provided data that proves my point: full chamber (your 'high velocity') loads are generally not acceptable.
I think that Voodoochile's accuracy data exactly proves my point as initially stated:

Quote:
Originally Posted by arcticap
The high velocity loads should be accurate enough for self-defense, self-protection, hunting and recreational combat shooting at moderate to close distances.
After all, hitting a man size target in self-defense, a hog or deer while hunting, a mountain lion for self-protection, or a silhouette target at close range during recreational combat shooting doesn't require a tack driver. And loading & firing them is a matter of personal choice.
Self-defense, self-protection and hunting require enough additional power to penetrate at close range. So pinpoint accuracy is often secondary. Maybe that's why RedBowTies88 asked about max. loads to begin with.
These heavy loads are obviously useful for some and can provide reasonable accuracy to fulfill the intended purposes as well.

Last edited by arcticap; November 18, 2011 at 11:28 AM.
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Old November 18, 2011, 12:29 PM   #24
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Quote:
I have developed a theory of why the Colt's shoot high which supplements the intentional design theory. Can't test it because I don't have the equipment.
They were sighted to hit a man on horseback at 75 yards.
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Old November 19, 2011, 11:57 AM   #25
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Mounted soldier at 75 yards...That works for the .44s..

.....but does it work for the 1851?

I don't know the source for the fact that Colt designed a revolver to take a rider at 75 yards. I am not disputing it but just can't recal the source. I believe I read of the Walker having had that ability.


I think at 75 yards, the .44 still has enough umph to take the fight out of someone especially if the round starts at 1100 fps.

But isn't a .36 pretty well spent at 75 yards? Not saying it is harmless but just not very much energy.

According to R.L.Wilson, Colt stated the useful range of the 1851 Colt at 25 yards.

I don't know where I read this and I read it a long time ago but when the Navy was considering a replacement for their single shot .50 pistol, there were many who felt the .36 was underpowered. I wish I could cite some sources for this info.
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