View Full Version : Question on these short BP pistols.......

December 7, 2009, 12:56 PM
Still looking for a Sheriff's model or just a short barrel repro to fit the holster I bought by mistake :eek::rolleyes: . Just looking at some of the pics on the auciton sites, that loading lever looks terribly short. How are these pistols to load? Looks like it might be quite a leverage disadvantage to get ball started. Do folks get a little piece of short tubing to go over that even shorter loading lever to give some leverage.

Seems like I even saw one of those short pistol models with no loading lever at all under the barrel. Does one just rely on a loading block then?

Goshk, where does the buying gadgets end?

Doc Hoy
December 7, 2009, 01:09 PM
I have a Sheriff's model Colt with an installed loading lever. It is darned hard to load it with the loading lever. (.36 Cal, use .375 round balls only).

I almost want to wear a glove to protect my hand.

Fingers McGee
December 7, 2009, 01:15 PM
I use a thick walled piece of 1/2" ID tygon tubing (clear aquarium tubing) about 6 inches long. Slip it over the short loading lever, adds more leverage to load 44s and protects the palm of your hand from the latch. Some others use a dowell drilled out or some other "cheater bar"; but the tygon tubing is soft enough to keep from marring the finish on the gun and is strong enough to do the job.


December 7, 2009, 01:31 PM
Kinda what I thought folks were doin'. Looks like it wold be tough on the palm.

Had to ask.


December 7, 2009, 11:25 PM
not only do the short levers put more pressure upon the palm and make loading less fun, the nature of the shorter lever requires the loader to put more pressure upon it via the fingers and wrist. Not exactly a good combination if you want to shoot long time if you have to use twice the energy to load over your long barreled revolver.

although you cant deny the short barrel ones are kinda almost in the "just right" size when you convert to cartridges.

December 7, 2009, 11:29 PM
The guns without the loading lever are loaded by removing the cylinder and pressing the balls into the chamber using the end of the cylinder arbor.

December 8, 2009, 05:53 AM
I must have tough hands because my lil Pietta NMA w/ 5.5" barrel is relatively easy for me to load with both .456 220gr. conicals or a .457 142gr. ball.

December 8, 2009, 06:54 AM
Gotta agree with Raider, I had a sheriff I put a lotta balls through w/o issue.

December 8, 2009, 11:08 AM
Or carry along one of these loading blocks talked about in the link here


Like I said, I have to fill a lonely holster. I look forward to the challenge, whatever that might be, to load one. It appears the ease/difficulty level varies with different guns.

December 8, 2009, 09:17 PM
okiefarmer . . . . Hmmmmmm . . . . that's one I've never heard. Let's see . . . . buy a holster that's the "wrong" size and then buy a new pistol to fit. I LIKE IT! I enjoy making holsters for a hobby. Do you think my wife might "buy it" if I just happen to make one the "wrong size" that would fit a '49 Colt Pocket? I want one of those sooooooo bad! Good luck with your short barreled model. I have an older Navy Arms .36 brass frame - short round barrel and looks like a Griswold & Gunnison. I love it and usually carry a short piece of pvc pipe (1/2') about six inches long to slide over the loading lever - works good. Any softer tubing that won't mar the finish should work well. Best of luck to you!

December 14, 2009, 02:04 PM
A trick I have often seen used working on cars might help here - Get yourself an old boxed end wrench and use that as a cheater on the loading lever.

Fingers McGee
December 14, 2009, 02:19 PM
A trick I have often seen used working on cars might help here - Get yourself an old boxed end wrench and use that as a cheater on the loading lever.


only if you don't care what the finish looks like after you're done.