View Full Version : Newbie to cap and ball revolvers

December 12, 2010, 06:03 PM
Hello everyone.
Just joined this forum today.

I have been into firearms for years but never black powder.
Was at the gunshow a couple weeks ago and came across a Pietta Rem.1858 New Model Army.
It is all blued steel with brass trigger guard and .44 cal, 8" barrel with target sights.
It is used, but in excellent shape with a few character marks here and there, paid $260. cash(good deal or not ?)

Read a lot on the internet and also the sticky above for care and maint and loading of this pistol and BP in general.

Went to local big box store and picked up Speer .454" round balls, CCI #10 caps, Precision 2000 lubed .44 fiber wads, Precision 2000 Lube, Hodgdon 44/45 cal 30grain volume equivalent pistol Pyrodex pellets(did not find any real black powder there).

Cleaned the pistol, made my own nipple wrench and cleaned the cylinder.

Took it out yesterday for the first time.
Loaded it with powder pellet, fiber wad, .454" ball(it shaved a thin ring of lead off) and covered the balls with the lube.
Capped it on all cylinders(kind of hard on the fingers and fumbling with those tiny things).

Popped off the first shot, loud noise, very low recoil(about a .38+P), thought did this thing really go off ?

Looked and sure enough, I expected more recoil.

Recocked it for the next shot, noticed cap was smashed/ splintered, shook pistol and it fell off, good to go.

Fired all 6 shots, had to pick off a couple mangled caps(did not want them to drop into the action).

6 shots in a 2" ragged hole at 20 yards.

I am hooked on this thing.
Shot 12 more rounds and headed home.

To save from fumbling with the caps, I picked up a straight line capper and made a wooden dowel to push the caps on.

I was worried about everything that I read of the powder pellets, but all went off without a hitch.

When I run out of the pellets, want to go with black powder.
Any recommendations on good powder and loads ?

Where can I get 2 extra cylinders to drop in the Pietta ?
I have a .44 mag speed loader holder that will work to carry them loaded and un capped of coarse.

Very cool pistol, glad I picked it up.


Doc Hoy
December 12, 2010, 06:27 PM
You came to the right place.

$260 sound pretty good for a target model Remington.

You can usually get GOEX, Triple Seven, or Pyrodex. Any of those will work fine. Load should be somewhere around 25 gr. and then you refine the actual number.

Number 10s work on my Remingtons.

Cabelas has Remington cylinders for (I think) 44.00.

I like a powder flask like the CVA 1400 or the Treso flask. Loading directly from the flask into a previously fired chamber increases the risks involved because of the possible detonation of the powder in the flask from remaining hot embers in the chamber. Some will say it is an absolute no no. If it happens the results could be pretty negative.

If you do much shooting you will want to mold your own round balls. You can get better balls if you mold your own than you can buy.

Others on the forum will wade in with additional info.

You are off to a good start.

December 12, 2010, 06:48 PM
Free shipping I think requires like a $99.00 order, but if you get 2 you will just need to spen another dollar on something?
I have the same gun, but not the target model and I love it!
Here's the cylinders at Cabelas= http://www.cabelas.com/product/1858-New-Army-44-Caliber-Spare-Cylinder/705081.uts?Ntk=AllProducts&searchPath=%2Fcatalog%2Fsearch.cmd%3Fform_state%3DsearchForm%26N%3D0%26fsch%3Dtrue%26Ntk%3DAllProducts%26Ntt%3D.44%2Bcylinder%26x%3D12%26y%3D9&Ntt=.44+cylinder

December 12, 2010, 06:56 PM
Its on sale now for 219.00 down from 289.99. Cylinders are 49.99

December 12, 2010, 07:01 PM
Welcome to the club.

Yes, get some real black powder it is the only way to go.

Ideal Tool
December 23, 2010, 01:32 AM
Hello, rem1858. Welcome to the facinating world of black powder! I started my shooting career with a 2nd. hand Navy Arms 1851 navy .36. Learned how to run ball on an old cast-iron stove with a dbl. cavity Lyman & bent spoon!
One thing about those old wood burning stoves, the main burner lid had a smaller removable little lid...a 10lb. cast-iron plumbers pot fir that hole perfectly! Now do you suppose those stove makers did that on purpose on account of most shootest back in the day rolled their own? One other thing you might want to have fun with is rolling your own paper ctgs. This speeds up the loading & it's kind of neat when someone who doesn't know percussion revolvers asks to see what ctg. your shooting..that first look on their face is priceless! Best of luck!