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Old March 28, 2013, 12:11 PM   #1
Wood3
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Who made my new 1851 Navy?

I have acquired a brass frame 1851 Navy with plain cylinder. Similar to the Schneider & Glassick models talked about here: http://rprca.tripod.com/schneider.htm

It was made in 1974 and has a manufacturer's mark I have not seen: C.O.M.

The rest is the standard: CAL .36 NAVY MODEL - MADE IN ITALY
on one side of the barrel and
BLACK POWDER ONLY on the lower facet if the octagon on the other side.

No marks on the frame between the grips. It has the "XXX" for 1974 and the 2 proof house marks.

I assume I need #10 caps and the correct load is 20 to 22 grs. with a .375 ball.

I would love to figure out what type of nipple wrench I need, etc.













If you need some additional pictures let me know.

Thanks for looking.
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Old March 28, 2013, 12:17 PM   #2
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Now what you need is another one and a bright Red sash. Stick both guns in the sash with their butts forward and you are ready to go.
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Old March 28, 2013, 12:47 PM   #3
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pietta of Italy is a start
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Old March 28, 2013, 01:04 PM   #4
Doc Hoy
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C.O.M.

stands for Contrini Officine Meccanica. It is a now defunct manufacturer in Gordone, It., 24 Via Aprille (SP?). Contrini was the name of the owner operator, first name Giovanni (I thnk).

Your pistol is a dead ringer for a Sheriff's Model I have from C.O.M. in .36. Date Code AC.

It was a sweet shooter until I experienced a chain fire event which loosened the arbor. It is now a wall hanger because I think the pistol is haunted.

Clean it up and shoot it. But use light powder loads.
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Old March 28, 2013, 01:21 PM   #5
Bishop Creek
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It looks just like my first cap 'n ball revolver that I bought in 1969. Kind of funny Doc, mine too became too loose to shoot from a chain fire event.
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Old March 28, 2013, 01:32 PM   #6
Wood3
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I am assuming the sash with the guns is a movie reference but I'm drawing a blank.

EDITED: Thanks Doc. Good to know. I do plan on using it. What would be a light load for that? 20 grs. max or even lighter?

Last edited by Wood3; March 28, 2013 at 01:35 PM. Reason: Saw Doc's post while doing this.
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Old March 28, 2013, 02:48 PM   #7
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Even lighter yet.

I would start with 15.

And of course it depends upon your plans for the revolver.

If you are going to shoot it a coupla times and then hang it up in favor of a new revolver, you may want the experience to be a little more emotional. (22 Gr)

I think (and I mean I only think) that your first indication of a heavy load will be marks on the ring on the recoil shield engraved by the back of the cylinder. Upon discharge, the cylinder is slapping against the recoil ring and denting it in the shape of the cylinder. You should be able to shoot for a long time at 15 and not get this effect.

That revolver looks in pretty good shape. You can tell if it has been abused by examining that recoil ring before you shoot it.
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Old March 28, 2013, 03:24 PM   #8
Wood3
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No marks yet. It does look like it has been fired but very little. It does need a thorough cleaning and then I will test it out at 15 grs.

Probably a long shot but do you have any idea what nipple wrench fits? They are not peened so I don't think it has been dry fired so hopefully those will be good to go for a while. I am assuming they take #10s.

While I'm at it I thought I might get some opinion on preferred FFFG powders. I have used Goex but I was wondering what others thought of that versus Swiss or Schuetzen? Six of one, half a dozen of the other?

What about wads versus grease or wads plus grease or just grease? Also filler with a light load or not necessary? I always heard that extra room in the front didn't hurt anything.
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Old March 28, 2013, 05:52 PM   #9
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I am going to get myself in trouble, but....

I think that at 15 grains in an old revolver, you would not see much difference.

I get myself in trouble here because I am not a purist and in a world of purists, a guy who shoots as I do appears not to care about performance.

I call upon the more exacting shooters in the group to endorse or dispute my opinion.

I just think you would not see that much difference unless you are using a chrony and a bench rest. If you shoot Hornady round balls you will find enough difference in the diameters of various balls from the same box that you would wonder if that is impacting accuracy. It probably isn't but you would wonder. (I do)

#10 Caps should work and as long as the nipple is clear you should get good results.

Goex or Triple Seven is easy to find in most venues and #10 caps are fairly standard.
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Old March 28, 2013, 06:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Probably a long shot but do you have any idea what nipple wrench fits? They are not peened so I don't think it has been dry fired so hopefully those will be good to go for a while. I am assuming they take #10s.

While I'm at it I thought I might get some opinion on preferred FFFG powders. I have used Goex but I was wondering what others thought of that versus Swiss or Schuetzen? Six of one, half a dozen of the other?

What about wads versus grease or wads plus grease or just grease? Also filler with a light load or not necessary? I always heard that extra room in the front didn't hurt anything.
Howdy Wood3

Just about any revolver nipple wrench will fit it. They can be had a Bass Pro, Cabelas, and numerous other BP suppliers (Possible Shop, Log Cabin Sport Shop, Dixie un Works, etc). You might even find one at wally world. #10 Remington caps will moe than likely fit the nipples and fire just fine. CCIs may not.

Use of Goex, Schuetzen, Grafs or Swiss usually boils down to preference and availability. For informal plinking, it's 6 of one, half dozen of the other. If you decide to use T7, you shouldn't exceed 15 grains. With real BP, you shouldn't exceed 18 grains.

My preference is lubed wad between the powder and ball. I find my revolvers stay cleaner and are easier to clean that way. Grease over the ball is too messy IMNSHO. Use a good thick BP lube liberally on the arbor. That more than anything will keep the pistol running and prevent theclinder from dragging or seizing up. Bore Butter is good, TC1000, or any of the beeswax based home made lubes are good as well.

By all means, have fun with it.
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Old March 29, 2013, 12:01 AM   #11
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"I am assuming the sash with the guns is a movie reference but I'm drawing a blank."

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Old March 29, 2013, 02:25 AM   #12
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And if you hadn't already picked up on it, the brass-framed guns are subject to shooting loose. Frame can stretch & the arbor can pull out.
That's why the recommendation for staying with light powder charges.
Next time, if you want to shoot to potential, go with a steel-framed revolver.
Good luck.

No filler needed.
Wads are infinitely more convenient than grease.
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Old March 29, 2013, 05:38 AM   #13
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An addendum to Fingers...(I am all thumbs)

In my opinion you are well advised to be thinking about removing the nipples to clean the pistol each time you shoot it.

Many say it is not needed and likely I am being too fastidious. Indeed some never remove the nipples unless they need replacing. But I like taking the nipples out every time. A by-product of this is that nipples don't get tight and almost any nipple wrench will do and more importantly will last a long time.
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Old March 29, 2013, 07:10 AM   #14
Wood3
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I do want to remove the nipples before I shoot it to give it a thorough cleaning but that is good advice on the nipples and I think I will also remove them each time.

I was looking for a steel frame that I might do a cartridge conversion on but this one came along at a good price so I am going to shoot it for a while.

So Fingers, you use the wad between the powder and ball and nothing in the front of the ball?

Those who use wads, do you use them dry or with a lube/grease on them?

I have no experience with black powder substitutes and not that much with black powder. Do some of the substitutes work well? What are some recommendations?

Scott
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Old March 29, 2013, 07:33 AM   #15
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Two very pertinent schools of thought....

Either:

1. Lube in front of the ball.

Positive - You can get a lot of lube in the weapon and the lube is in front of the ball enhancing the likelihood of good lubrication. Also, you don't need to buy or make wads with this method. Seals the chambers reducing the likelihood of gases passing from the discharged chamber to others not in battery.

Negatives - It is much more messy. The consistency of your lube becomes very critical since you really want it to stay put and if the lube is not very stable it will melt and run all over a hot revolver.

2. Lubed wad behind the ball

Positive - Very consistent lubrication and many say it is more than adequate to properly lube the shot. Much easier to load. Much less messy to load. Much more stable in a hot revolver or on a hot day. Seals the chambers reducing the likelihood of gases passing from the discharged chamber to others not in battery.

Negative - You have to buy or, better yet, make the wads. The wads take up space on the chamber which has to be considered in compression. Also a disadvantage if you like to load as heavy as possible (Few do).

I do not disagree with those who feel a strong anymous to one or the other method. I have not formed an opinion which I think is better. I have been doing the lube in front of the ball for a long time but I am thinking I should try the wads more often. Especially in BP cartridges.

I have no experience with and no opinion (That I am willing to defend publicly)of conversions.
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Old March 29, 2013, 07:57 AM   #16
Wood3
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That leads to the question of what do you use to make wads if you are not buying ready made ones and how much of that, i.e. how big, how tight a fit, how thick, etc.?

Scott
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Old March 29, 2013, 10:43 AM   #17
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I can squeeze a nickel until the buffalo s ___ ts

and therefor I like to make my own from the cheapest material I can find.

That is a 100% wool felt hat that you can find at thrift shops for about three bucks. You want it to be a man's hat since the felt in a man's hat is much more dense than a woman's hat. Check it out. You'll see what I mean. One hat will make about a billion wads.

You can also get "Durofelt" which is very good. Thicker than hat material and consequently makes a more substantial wad. I don't know a good source for Durofelt but I am sure someone will wade in with a link or something. (Mykeal, Gary, What do you think?)

As regards fit I think that slightly oversized is better than slightly undersized.

I bought a set of punches from Horrible Freight: http://www.harborfreight.com/9-piece...-set-3838.html

The 7/16 is a little small for .44 and .45 and the 1/2 is a little large. I think the 1/2 inch is the choice.

The 3/8 is perfect for .36 cal and for .38 and 357 BPCR

5/16 is good but not perfect for .31.

You can go to Dixie Gun Works and buy special punches at about ten bucks a piece but the tightwad in me recoils in horror at the thought.

In addition, the wad punches that you get specifically for that purpose do not chuck into a drill press. They are made for use with a hammer. These punches from Harbor Freight work either way.

As regards thickness, the durofelt that folks like to use is (IIRC) 1/8 inch. This is thicker than hat felt and what it means is that you have to use two hat felt wads to get good lubrication.
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Old March 29, 2013, 11:53 AM   #18
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I'm frugal like Doc; but I'm also lazy so

I buy my wads prelubed in bulk (1k pkgs). I've tried the punching wads, mixing my own lube, and soaking the wads and find it messy, cumbersome and time consuming. I'd much rather be attending a match and some shooting. I shoot CAS matches three out of four weeks a month and between March and October go through over 2000 rounds at matches. Purchased wads are more consistent as to amount and type of lube and only add about $.045 per shot when bought in bulk. I also buy my caps in bulk so they run $5.25 per 100 after shipping.

I'll second what Doc Hoy says. He's given you some good information.

I use subs as well as real BP, from time to time. One of the advantages to using substitutes is that you do not have to use BP lubed bullets in cartridges. T7 is hotter than BP, so you can use less and get good results. APP can be used as a direct replacement for BP; it's dustier and is inconsistent when loading BP cartridges though IME. I can't comment on any of the pyrodex grades since I haven't used any in many years.
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Old March 29, 2013, 01:11 PM   #19
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And- DON'T do a cartridge conversion on that brass frame.
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Old March 29, 2013, 01:17 PM   #20
Wood3
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When you say cartridges are you referring to prepackaging powder and a ball in one of those small paper pouches instead of filling each cylinder with powder, a wad and a ball? I have only shot black powder with a friend and we loaded the components individually.

You mentioned lubed bullets. Can you explain that. I thought they were just plain lead.

Scott
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Old March 29, 2013, 01:35 PM   #21
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Wood3

I think he is refering to a cartridge conversion on your revolver.

I don't know much about conversions but we are talking about going from cap and ball configuration to a cased round such as .38, .38 special, or .357 magnum for your .36.

The temptation is to use smokeless powder cartridges and it is my understanding the such rounds pack too much of a wallop for the brass frame on that revolver.

In fact, you can have more money in a revolver and conversion than you would pay for an equivalent cartridge revolver (1873 Colt or 1875 Remington clone) I have paid as little as 250.00 for a used .357/.38 Peacemaker look-alike and I love it. Trouble free. And it is made for the round, not converted to it.

Having said that, there are plenty of folks out there who love conversions and feel that a good range of historical revolvers must include a conversion since they have a historical prototype.
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Old March 29, 2013, 02:12 PM   #22
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Wood,
It was YOU who mentioned you were looking to do a cartridge conversion. Do you not know what that is?
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Old March 29, 2013, 05:19 PM   #23
Wood3
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I wasn't talking about a conversion there as I have a brass frame. I assumed the response above referred to black powder cap and ball loading with lubricated bullets as that is what we have been discussing. I only mentioned in passing above that I had thought about doing a conversion if I had a steel frame which I don't because I like to dabble in gunsmithing.
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Old March 29, 2013, 06:42 PM   #24
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Quote:
I don't know a good source for Durofelt
http://www.durofelt.com/
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Old March 29, 2013, 06:55 PM   #25
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I was commenting on using modern brass cartridges and bullets with Subs since you had mentioned getting a steel frame and doing a conversion to cartridges. I was not referring to making paper cartridges for loading in C&Bs.

Like Dpris said, don't even think about converting a brass framed revolver.
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