View Full Version : CVA Revolver Quality ???

February 13, 2011, 08:50 AM
Would appreciate any opinions, observations, experience anyone has had with the Connecticut Valley Arms black powder revolvers.
How they would compare with the current imports of Uberti - Pietta etc
The CVA site does not list Revolvers, that I could find.

Same info on the Euroarms of America would be appreciated also. I just bought a Rogers & Spencer Euroarms for $150.00. Looks good, excellent condition etc. But shooting will have to wait for warm weather.

Thank you

February 13, 2011, 09:47 AM
CVA was an importer not a manufacturer. Look under the loading lever and it should have the makers name or at least a logo. if it was made before 2000 it's most likely ASM(Armi san Marco)and will be dubious quality. After 2000 they were made by Pietta. Check the date code to see when it was made. There will be Roman numerals or two letters in a box on the right side of the frame.

Doc Hoy
February 13, 2011, 10:10 AM
I have had experience with 1863 Remingtons from CVA (Manuf - ASM) and from Pietta of a much later vintage. The CVAs were good quality but fit and finish was not that of the Pietta.

I have two 1860 Colts from ASM (Brass Frame) and lock up and fit and finish is good. One of these revolvers started as a kit and was marked CVA. I restored the revolver, removing the CVA markings but leaving the ASM logos and now these two revolvers are essentially identical.

I have an ASP 1860 Colt steel frame (Nice looking unblued revolver) and it is a very good, tight, revolver. It had what I think is either a design or manufacturing flaw in that the barrel was made such that the roundball on the chamber would not pass the barrel to get into the ramming position. Smoothed the barrel where the arbor enters and that fixed the problem.

I have a couple Euroarms revolvers with the following thoughts.

1851 Navy is pretty good but also had a manufacturing flaw in the cylinder. I replaced it and the pistol works fine. Good consistent shooter.

Rogers and Spencer is very good. When I bought it, the previous owner had exchanged the toggle screw that retains the loading lever with one he had apparently made. I replaced it and one additional screw and now this revolvers looks and shoots like new. Very fun shooter. (Gotta watch the plunger screw because it likes to back out.)

I have an ASM Walker and Dragoon. I believe CVA imported Walkers and Dragoons manufactured by ASM. Mine have no CVA markings. The Walker is a very emotional revolver to shoot. I have not fired the Dragoon yet.

In some auctions ASMs and ASPs seem to comand a higher price than is reasonable. I don't have good familiarity with collector value of some of the ASMs and ASPs that might be very rare. But I think there is no reason to pay more than about 180.00 for a steel version of either an 1860, 1851, or 1858 assuming that it is in good condition. You can buy a new Pietta from Cabela's for 200.00 and I see no reason why a previously owned ASM or ASP would outperform a New Pietta.

I just bought a new 1863 and it is desirable over the ASMs

I also bought a very recent 1858 Remington with a six inch barrel and while operation of the revolver is no better than the two ASMs, the cylinder removal and reinstallation is the smoothest of any Remington I have ever fiddled with.

Some re-enactors like ASM because very few markings are visible unless you look at the underside of the barrel.

Doc Hoy
February 13, 2011, 10:16 AM
...and that is a first.

I like ASM quality from the eighties. But I must hasten to add, that I don't have so many revolvers that I can compare for example an 85 ASM with an 85 Pietta of identifcal description. Hawg has far more experience than I do.

I forgot to add that you Euroarms Rogers and Spencer was good purchase at 150.00. I paid 175.00 for mine and I may have given a bit too much considering the toggle screw.

It sure is a fun revolver to shoot.

February 13, 2011, 10:26 AM
Doc some were good some weren't is why I said dubious. Mostly fit and finish was very good. The problem was soft internal parts. ASP(Armi san Paulo) is now Euroarms.

February 13, 2011, 10:30 AM
Thanks Doc. You know your stuff. That is exactly the info I was searching for.

Was looking at 2 CVA 3rd model Dragoon's on GB, starting price is $319.95 & $200.00 with 2 & 6 days remaining and -0- bids. The latter looks good, but how high will it go? It is an ASM.
(Already spent well over $1,700.00 on BP revolvers, not counting the DP Howdah.)

February 13, 2011, 01:42 PM
(Already spent well over $1,700.00 on BP revolvers, not counting the DP Howdah.)

You need Counsuling :p

Bill Akins
February 13, 2011, 01:53 PM
It sounds like his BP addiction is killing him, but he loves the way he is dying. :D

Doc Hoy
February 13, 2011, 04:34 PM

I will buy that. I don't shoot nearly as much as you do and so I don't put as much wear on the internals. I do agree with what you say.


Thanks for your compliment but......I advise you to take everything I say with a grain of salt. Most of the folks who post here have far more actual shooting experience than I do and consequently they are in a better position to posit on the relative shooting qualities of revolvers.

In addition, I have an odd approach to shooting. I never ever shoot with another person present, consequently I never get the input from others whose experience would really help me. I know what I know, but I don't know what I dont know.

I do like working on the revolvers and so I feel like I have a fairly good knowledge of the internal workings of the various pistols.

I would stay away from the 319.00 CVA/ASM. I was looking at that pistol but the price is too high. Add forty bucks and you can buy a brand new Uberti from Taylors. I think that would be worth it.

There were a coupla Dragoons up there for around 200.00 but one of them had an after-market front sight. Depending upon how that modification was done, that revolver could be worth a maximum of 100.00 dollars. There was a first model which has been listed for about four weeks. The guy lists a reserve (IIRC) and the bids are never high enough to clear the reserve. Close examination of the photos reveals that the revolver is far from perfect. There is also a Dragoon for 292.00 and here again, if you put a little extra cash with it, you can buy a new one from Taylors. Also, some of those guys have 30.00 in shipping. I never buy a revolver when the seller is trying to mask profit as shipping. A Walker can be shipped priority to any ZIP for 11.00.

Hylander and Bill,

1700.00 covers the purchases that I have not told my wife about. And she is a pretty open minded person.

February 13, 2011, 06:18 PM
Doc, I don't shoot as much as I used to. In fact I have a .36 Remington Navy I haven't even fired yet.:eek: Used to be that wouldn't have lasted ten minutes after I got home with it.'

February 13, 2011, 07:01 PM
I have two ASM made CVA revolvers - both are very nice pistols - great fit and finish - from the 80s - one is a steel frame 1861 Colt Navy and the the other is a 1862 Colt Pocket Police - brass frame. I've been very pleased with them, but, as has been said, ASM can be hit or miss. All I can go on is the two that I have . . . . .

Hawg . . . you'd better fire up that Remy .36 . . . you're gonna love 'er!

February 13, 2011, 07:55 PM
I seen the CVA / ASM 3rd Dragoon with the high after market front site and even higher price tag. I have placed a one time bid on #216045977 for $200.00, it appears to be a pretty good one, won't be doing much more.

February 13, 2011, 08:17 PM
Hawg . . . you'd better fire up that Remy .36 . . . you're gonna love 'er!

Yeah I know. Only had it six months. :D

February 15, 2011, 09:07 AM
Hello all,

I have an 1858 Remington copy from CVA, it started as a kit, I will agree that the internals are a bit soft, I have replaced a couple of springs. I used it for Civil War reenacting and I was pleased with it's performance. I used it for live firing as well and it was pretty accurate. I am now getting a cartridge converter for it to use as a CAS gun.

Denis oilcan72

February 15, 2011, 09:17 AM
Did it again. Just bought ANOTHER BP revolver. A Ruger Old Army, blued for $301.65 including postage. Did a 'buy it now,' it had been listed on GB for just under 7 hours.

Doc Hoy
February 15, 2011, 10:16 AM
As long as the condition is right, that is an absolutely outstanding deal.

February 15, 2011, 11:54 AM
Sounds like a great deal.