View Full Version : Got to shoot my new ASM BP revolver & other BP guns this weekend.

Bill Akins
February 21, 2011, 06:57 AM
I had a great time shooting my newly acquired ASM 1860, .44 this weekend.
It and my other BP revolvers performed flawlessly. As with most 1860 Colt clones, the sights on the ASM weren't a lot of help. I did notice that the rear sight groove on top of the ASM's hammer wasn't as deep as it is on my Pietta 1860 version and trying to get a sight picture with that almost non existent hammer groove is not friendly to sighting. But I mostly shoot by looking down the side of the long barrel with my 1860's anyway unless I'm trying to shoot real far away, then I'll use the sights rudimentary as they are. I learned a long time ago how to sight down the side of the barrel. A friend of mine's father taught me that trick about 40 years ago. I was with my friend and his dad and his dad was having my friend and I throw up small pill bottles in the air and his dad would snap shoot them with a .22 rifle while they were airborne. He told me that he didn't have time to use the sights on the thrown up bottles so he just looked down the side of the barrel. He could pop about 8 out of 10 on the first try. He was good. He explained to me and then I tried it a bunch of times with his rifle and found that I could do it too, just not as good as he could yet. But that taught me the trick.

But the big surprise this weekend was not how well my BP revolvers performed, but how well my CVA .50 cal percussion mountain rifle performed.
I've had that rifle for about 20 years and only shot balls out of it about 10 times in the past and then I would shoot wadded up newspaper blanks out of it on the fourth of July and new years just to get the BOOM for celebration.
When I had shot it before in the past, it was at very far off targets that most of the time I couldn't tell if I hit them or not because they were so far off.

But this weekend at a shoot I was at, that rifle pleasantly surprised me. In addition to my BP stuff, I had also brought a scoped modern semi auto rifle with me and shot that too. But my CVA mountain rifle outshot everything else I had. It was weird, I couldn't miss with it! We had metal reactive targets set up and every time I shot the CVA mountain rifle it was "CLANG!"
I surprised one of the shooters who asked me how many times I fired it without swabbing the barrel and I told him I had shot it at least ten times that day without swabbing the barrel. He couldn't believe I was able to load it ten times without swabbing. Yes the black powder fouling did make the loading progressively tighter and starting the ball and patch with my short starter was hard after the fifth or sixth shot, but I managed it. I did have to really push hard on the ramrod though to get the patched ball all the way down. Even had to smartly tap the ramrod on the last few shots to get the patched ball fully seated.

The early German rifles did not use a patched ball and the shooter had to pound the ball down the barrel and it engaged the rifling all the way down as it loaded. They were a pain to load but very accurate. It's funny, but I swear as my patched ball got harder and harder to load, that it got more and more accurate! I was shooting .490 ball with a lubed patch and a 50 grain BP load. I used spit on some patches and bore butter on other patches for lube. They all worked just as well.

I was thinking of selling the old mountain rifle and replacing it with a different gun, but I think now I've changed my mind and am going to keep it. It's just so darn accurate and that German silver front sight really shows up well in the rear sight to my older eyes. I wish I had some pics for y'all but you'll just have to take my word for it.


Ben Towe
February 21, 2011, 08:16 AM
This makes me realize I need to break out the Walker and shoot it today...

February 21, 2011, 11:52 PM
I'm gonna try that 'sighting down the side of the barrel' thing...
Thanks for the tip.