View Full Version : Lemat revolver

Ben Towe
March 6, 2009, 11:53 AM
Any y'all ever fooled with a LeMat Confederate revolver? I've been looking at them in catalogs for years, wanting one but I don't know which of these companies that make these replicas do a good job and which do shoddy work.

March 6, 2009, 02:16 PM

As far as I know, only Pietta is manufacturing the Lemat so there is no choice................

Ben Towe
March 6, 2009, 06:01 PM
How is their quality?

March 6, 2009, 06:16 PM
Pietta is making pretty good pistols these days.
I got one 4 years ago and am quite pleased with it.
Most reports I read from guys who have bought a Pietta in the past year have been positive.

So, get that LeMat!
Damn I would love to have one, what a cool gun.

And when you say to the bad guy, "I know what you are thinking. Did I fire six times, or only five?"
It is a trick question.

March 6, 2009, 07:33 PM
One story I read concerning the LeMat has always stuck in my mind. Apparently the southern cav units carried 6 of those bad boys with them. Now, that's FiREPOWER! :D


March 6, 2009, 07:55 PM
The LeMat has some quirks to it. Loading lever and shot barrel ram rod need tweaks. Some have problems with the cavalry model barrel release coming loose. Mine is very tight.
I would rate mine a 7.5, if Pietta had spent another five minutes polishing before they blued it it would be an 9. You can see a lot of finishing wheel marks in the metal, they are very fine but you still see them. It should be better for the money.
As far as shooting it, nothing compares. The shot barrel needs very sensitive caps to be reliable.

March 6, 2009, 09:39 PM
Buy a copy of Percussion Pistols And Revolvers: History, Performance and Practical Use by Mike Cumpston and Johnny Bates from Amazon.com and read the chapter on the LeMat. It's an interesting gun. However, it's not a Colt. They're difficult to take apart and problems firing the smoothbore barrel are quite common.

March 6, 2009, 11:36 PM
That is a good book, it covers several revolvers that I have. I made two driver bits for my LeMat, makes disassemble a breeze. No harder than a Paterson. I made several sets of the bits if any LeMat owners are interested.

Ben Towe
March 7, 2009, 03:40 AM
Thanks for the replies, I'm gonna try to order me one soon as I get the money up.

March 12, 2009, 04:13 PM
if the govt realized how deadly lemat revolver can be it would be banned!Its like the legal way to carry sawed off shotgun!:D

March 13, 2009, 12:52 PM
My God, you're right, it is a sawed off shotgun, and an assault pistol, all at the same time.
The Feds will ban it, and tear down the statue of Jeb Stuart for having carried one during the Civil War.

James K
March 13, 2009, 01:41 PM
If it fired fixed ammunition, it would be a short barrel shotgun under the federal law.

In fact, the LeMat "back in the day" was rare (I doubt anyone ever carried six, and very few carried even one) and not considered very reliable, something the C.S. inspectors reported time and again. The Confederacy contracted for 2000, for use by the C.S. Navy, but I believe only about 100 were delivered. Other shipments were in dribs and drabs, 100 here, 3 there.

Late shipments were apparently never received; as the Union blockade tightened they were either left in Jamaica or remained in England. Some were sold in London after the war.

Le Mat himself was an American, but the guns were made in France; an early attempt to have them made in New Orleans failed. He was the inventor but was not a gun maker or even a real businessman. He may have had some connection to Gen. P.G.T. Beauregard, since some revolvers were sent to the general for distribution to high ranking officials and officers, a practice common in those days.

A figure is sometimes given as over 2500 revolvers made, based on known serial numbers, but it is fairly certain that less than 500 actually reached the Confederacy, and some writers say less than that. The reason was that deliveries from Europe were about as unreliable as the U.S. Navy could make them, and shipments might or might not get through.

As with other Confederate weapons, far more have been made in Italy in the last 50 years than were ever used by the C.S. armed forces.


warrior poet
March 13, 2009, 06:59 PM
Side note: the LeMat was what John "Doc" Holliday used most often and in all likelihood was what he used at the O.K. Corral.