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Old June 22, 2019, 01:54 AM   #1
TruthTellers
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How do the brass 1858's hold up?

I've waited near 2 years now to get a Pietta Buffalo 12 inch 1858 with a steel frame and gunbroker has yielded very little for me in that regard, but brass framed Buffalo's are fairly common and cheap. To scratch my itch I'm thinking of doing something I never thought I'd ever do: buy a brass frame revolver.

All I hear is that they stretch under hot loads and too much shooting, not exactly inspiring a lot of confidence, but I'm wondering does the design of the NMA with the top strap will help add some strength and reduce that stretching? How long could the brass frame last using a max charge of Triple 7 under a 200 grain conical?

Even if the frame does stretch over time, at least I'd have a spare cylinder I can use with my other Pietta NMA's, at least it will share parts like the loading lever assembly with my 8 inch and the internals, screws, grips, etc. will fit and be spare parts.

Although if the brass frame will only last a few range trips, I'm not so sure I want to bother with them.

Also, what are the chances a used brass frame on gunbroker will already have stretched frames?
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Old June 22, 2019, 12:47 PM   #2
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For the brass remmys it's not so much stretching as it is the cylinder peening the recoil shield, and causing an excessive barrel cylinder gap. Some folks on here have pictures. You should still keep to lighter loads. The longer barrel of the buffalo will give you higher velocities anyway. Old South Firearms has steel frame buffalos.
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Old June 22, 2019, 02:57 PM   #3
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I am well aware Old South sells those Buffalo's with the steel frame, but they're a pretty steep price at $360 or $370. I looked for them on GB and hoped I'd find a used one under $300 and two years later I'm still empty handed.
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Old June 22, 2019, 05:21 PM   #4
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Keep loads under 20 grains and it will last a long time. Load it up and sooner or later you'll have a pretty paper weight.
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Old June 22, 2019, 07:24 PM   #5
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Better to pay an extra $120 to get what you want, and do what you want with it, without fear of ruining it. I had a brass buffalo and it started peening the recoil shield with 25 grains fffg and a round ball. I didn't let it get worse, and I eventually sold it.
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