View Full Version : Pietta 1858 NMA question

January 5, 2011, 09:36 PM
Okay fellows;

What is the difference between a Pietta 1858 NMA and an 1858 ?

Ordered a couple extra cylinders and they arrived today but they are too long.

My cylinder has casting above the cylinder mouth where the retaining rod holds the cylinder into the frame.

The cylinders that came do not have that and the cylinders are longer so to speek.

New cylinders are flush across the cylinder mouth.
My cylinder has extra metal sticking above the cylinder in the middle where the rod slides through.

Therefor the new cylinders will not fit cause they hit the barrel going in.

Looks like I will have to purchase another pistol to be able to use these cylinders :D


January 5, 2011, 10:11 PM
left one is my cylinder
right one is the new cylinder


Dr. Strangelove
January 5, 2011, 10:20 PM
How long have you had your 1858? My Pietta 1858 uses the cylinder you describe as the "new" one. I bought it from Cabela's in 1991.

January 5, 2011, 10:29 PM
You must have an older Pietta. The pic shows that the slots in the cylinder for the bolt head are wider in the newer cylinder as well. Older Pietta 58's had narrower slots for the bolt head to lock into.

January 5, 2011, 10:34 PM
I picked it up at a gun show a couple moths ago used.

Here is the serial number if anyone knows how to date a Pietta.
Ser# 127494

Has an 8" octigon barrel with target sights and blued.


January 5, 2011, 10:46 PM
That protrusion on the cylinder for your gun is a gas ring. It's purpose is to keep powder fouling from getting between the cylinder and base pin and binding things up. It is not a part of the Remington design and Pietta has never incorporated it in their reproductions.

It would be useful to see photos of your gun with the cylinder installed.

This is just speculation but some target shooters that use the Remington platform have had their guns modified by installing a custom barrel that is threaded further back into the frame. The cylinder is then faced off to incorporate a gas ring. This keeps the guns running longer and the reduced powder capacity is not a factor for competition shooters who use light loads anyway.

As to dating your gun there should be a square box with two letters inside it. Those letters are the date proof code. If you post those we can tell you the date it was made.

If my speculation is correct and all other dimensions are the same you could have a machinist face off your new cylinders to match the one from your gun and be good to go.

January 5, 2011, 11:56 PM
I just checked my 1858 NMA that was bought new from Cabela's last month. The original cylinder that came in it appears to be identical to the new cylinders that were delivered to you.

Denster may be correct in that a previous owner might have had the cylinder face machined for a deeper set barrel.

Noelf2 might also be correct about the different sizes in the grooves cut into the cylinder for the bolt head. I honestly can't tell from your photos. If the grooves are different, it would make no sense to machine the new cylinder face to match your old cylinder.

January 6, 2011, 12:51 AM



January 6, 2011, 12:53 AM



January 6, 2011, 12:55 AM



January 6, 2011, 12:56 AM



January 6, 2011, 12:57 AM

Thanks for looking;


January 6, 2011, 01:33 AM
Allrighty then. The BA code makes it 1991 production. Appears to be a factory barrel that has been set back. The cylinder has been shortened and a separate gas ring bushing set in similar to Colt SAA. The nipple recesses have been opened up to facilitate a capper. The bolt notches have been enlongated probably part of deepening them. It's hard to tell from the photos but it appears that the bolt notches on the guns cylinder are a few degrees offset from the factory cylinder. That may be an illusion due to the nipple recesses being opened up on the guns cylinder.
For certain your gun has been extensivley smithed. Maybe not a bad thing. How does it shoot?

Doc Hoy
January 6, 2011, 02:24 AM
Looks like the barrel has been worked too. Note that the factory engraving is very weak and the angles between the flats are not very crisp. Sometimes that engraving/stamping on pistols is less than perfect from the factory, but this one appears to have been refinished.

BTW for Rem1858 I do recommend you get another pistol. I recommend an 1860 Colt. Your Remington cylinders won't fit in that either so you will have a good reason to go get a Dragoon. I must admit that I make use of a different strategy. When the odometer in the car passes an even thousand miles, it is time for another pistol. Somethimes the neighbor helps out by letting me celebrate his odometer passing an even thousand. ;)

January 6, 2011, 08:08 AM
It's a parts gun. None of the serial numbers match.

January 6, 2011, 08:20 AM
I agree with denster on the smithing work. Appears to have been re-blued also. A good smith should be able to duplicate the gas ring and bolt notches on your new cylinders. The bolt notches do look offset to me compared to the new cylinders.

January 6, 2011, 11:03 AM
I'm rethinking that the notches may be offset after looking at the photos again. There would be no good reason to do that and it would entail a lot of modifications for no good reason. When you photograph a details on a round object rotating it even a little will create an illusion that the details are in a different location. Easy to check by just laying a straight edge along one side of the notch on the old and new cylinder and see if it bisects the nipple in the same location.
It may have been made from parts from different guns but someone put a lot of thought into it and it was purpose built, probably for competition. Makeing the gas ring a separate bushing makes it easy to accomodate for eventual wear.
If you got it for a fair price and it locks up well and the chambers align with the bore you may have gotten a bargain and a good shooter. Let us know.

January 6, 2011, 11:17 AM
Your new cylinder is of the new style with the wider notches.. and your old one is the old style with the narrow notches... I have both and it is fairly obvious when I put them together... Yes yours has additional mods ..but even before the mods, the cylinders are from two different Pietta eras.

My vote is to buy a new Cabelas 58...they are on sale right now for $199... you already have the cylinders....Not like you could come up with a better excuse to buy a new one:D

January 6, 2011, 11:38 AM
Wes makes a good point. Good excuses to buy a new gun don't come along that often.

Dr. Strangelove
January 6, 2011, 11:42 AM
That's what I was thinking, by the time you pay someone to modify those cylinders, you could have bought a new pistol and probably saved money.

January 6, 2011, 09:29 PM
Using a straight edge, the cylinder notches are not off set.

My cylinder notch is .135"
New cylinder notch is .155"

So is this just an older Pietta ?

Did someone take a newer Pietta and modified it ?

Just an observation, but my cylinder mouth is not chamfered and the two new cylinders are.

When I first got this Pietta, I fired one handed at 20yds using a Pyro P 30gr pellet and .454" balls.
All 6 shots touched each other.

Thanks everyone for your input.

Looks like I will have to get me a new Pietta 1858 to go along with my spare cylinders:D

Only a few months into cap and ball and have an unknown Pietta 1858 New Army, an Uberti Colt Walker, a Ruger Old Army and soon to be newer Pietta 1858:)


January 6, 2011, 10:39 PM
If it shoots that well, I don't think you need to worry about what it is, or how old it is. Apparently, the previous owner knew what he was doing.

It's time to move on to bigger and better questions, now. Such as where to find a new frame for those poor homeless cylinders. :D

January 6, 2011, 11:13 PM
When I looked into having gas rings installed on my Uberti Remingtons the smith said they drill out a short recess in the front of the cylinder where the pin enters and insert the ring that sticks out beyond the cylinder face. Then he said they machine away some of the frame under the barrel to allow the gas ring to fit. Not a whole lot of work like setting the barrel back and machining the cylinder shorter. The gun under discussion may well be one of those extensively modified guns for N/SSA competition built for accuracy.

January 6, 2011, 11:41 PM
I ordered a new cylinder for my Pietta stainless 1858 and it also had the wider notches, really kind of a shame. If anyone out there has an extra older cylinder for a Pietta, stainless or blue, and needs a newer cylinder I hereby propose a swap.

January 6, 2011, 11:49 PM

With a gun that shoots that well treasure it and don't worry about spare cylinders.

January 7, 2011, 10:04 PM
Thanks for the info :)

So to get this straight...
What I have is a 1991 Pietta that someone reworked the cylinder to produce a gas ring and machined the barrel to set it back and then reblued it all for competition purposes ?

Neat :D

I will not mess with it, just shoot it.


January 7, 2011, 10:18 PM
You got it straight. Enjoy your custom gun.

January 9, 2011, 08:07 PM
Took the 1858 apart this afternoon cause the cylinder latch was messed up.

Found the little machined button on the hammer is worn out and the cylinder latch slips past it and will not hold in place.

I have the parts kit from Cabelas.

Will need to machine all the parts to get her timed correctly.

I have reworked some DA's in the past, but will be my first SA.
My next project :)

Oh, mykeal;
You mentioned that it is a parts gun cause none of the numbers match.
Well, after stripping it down completely today I found something interesting.

At the bottom of the grip on the outside has ser# 127494
The rear of the cylinder has 494
The grips have 494

With the grips off a stamping #PF0262 on the frame next to the hammer spring.
On the bottom of the barrel 262
Inside the brass trigger guard 262


January 9, 2011, 08:52 PM
Very unusual for the cam on the hammer to "wear" out. It may have been oversmithed. If indeed that is the problem I'd suggest just dropping in the new hammer from the parts kit and trying it before I started replacing other parts. Just a suggestion.

January 9, 2011, 08:58 PM
That cam is tapered, maybe the bolt leg is bent.

January 9, 2011, 09:03 PM
Hmm. This is 494?

January 9, 2011, 09:03 PM

If you saw what I saw when I took it apart, you would understand.

All of the parts look to be original with a lot of wear.
I think this gun has seen a lot of action in its 20 years.

Installed the new hammer with the old cylinder latch and it works.

Thing is the hammer hooks for half cock and full cock on the new hammer have to be machined a lot.

It will go to half cock at 3/4 travel of the hammer.
It will not go to full cock at all.

So I decided that I will just install all of the new parts and take my time to get everything just right.

Nice project for me in my spare time.

I will be shooting the ROA for awhile now :D

I may post some photos of the old internal parts.


January 9, 2011, 09:06 PM
you got me there :D

well, anyway, the rest of the numbers match

so it is not a total parts gun :)


January 9, 2011, 09:42 PM
here are the internals





January 9, 2011, 10:20 PM
Just an observation. The hammer cam does not appear appreciably worn however the bolt (cylinder lock) is shot.

January 9, 2011, 10:41 PM
I know that it appears that way...
But, with the new hammer it works.

The cam is worn just thin enough that it starts to lift the cylinder lock and slips off.

A better picture would show the difference in the thickness of the cam.

I could probably get it to work again with some love and care, but it would eventually do the same thing again.

Time to set it up to go another 20 years I am afraid, but not.


January 9, 2011, 11:37 PM
Good luck with your rebuild.

January 14, 2011, 09:46 PM
New Pietta 1858 coming to go with my two extra cylinders :D