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Old June 9, 2024, 10:40 PM   #1
ThomasJ2352
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Newbie BP revolver questions

Hello and an apology if this isnt the right place or its so ridiculously simplistic to be insulting...I'm looking at getting an 1858 Remington (likely Pietta) 5/5" or 8" 44 cal revolver with the thought of, eventually, purchasing a conversion cylinder. It was my thought to go with 45 colt cowboy load rounds but I spoke with a chap at his mainly BP related store and he indicated that one could easily load their own 45 brass rounds without needing a press.
So my questions are:
1) would the brass rounds use BP or smokeless powder?
2) how would one reload without a press? The chap referred to using paper in the process and
pointed to brass rounds with what appeared to have a paper ring between the bullet and case.
3) this is more related to using paper cartridges...I've watched a number of videos showing how to
make em but few seem to show how they are put into the cylinders....when they are inserted into
each chamber is the ramrod used to smunch them down or are they just left as they were put in?

Thoughts?
Thanks
Tom
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Old June 10, 2024, 04:25 AM   #2
ligonierbill
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I have a Pietta replica of the Remington 1858, and I bought a conversion cylinder. Since I also load for a modern (Ruger) 45 Colt, I just load in the same press. I do run paper patched bullets in 45-70 and 50-70 rifles. Check with the manufacturer, but the cylinder I have can handle light loads of smokeless powder. That said, I load holy black or a substitute for two reasons.

First, you have less worry about overcharging. My smokeless "cowboy" load for the 45 uses 8 grains of Unique. One could fit 3 charges in that big case, and a double charge is likely to be catastrophic. With black, you're loading strictly by volume, and it's pretty difficult to overload. Second, that Remington was born to make smoke. Cleanup is not really that difficult, either.

I had not heard of paper patching 45 Colt, but it was (and is) a common practice for rifles. In fact, my primary 50-70 load is paper patched. Just use a slightly undersized bullet (typically 8 mil undersized) wrapped in 2 layers of "onion skin" paper. Your dealer probably has the supplies and can show you how. And there are some good books. With care and a little practice, you can load those bullets by hand. The old buffalo hunters did.

I'm guessing you are "across the pond", but a good US source for BP cartridge supplies is Buffalo Arms. Good shooting!
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Old June 10, 2024, 08:15 AM   #3
ThomasJ2352
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Thank you ligonierbill for your information.....greatly appreciated...really...
I did a search for paper patch bullets and a plethora of info came flooding in...
As a tinkerer its wonderful to see! Cant wait to get started.
Thanks again,
Tom
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Old June 10, 2024, 08:22 AM   #4
deerslayer303
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35 - 40 grains of FFFg real Black powder in 45 Colt is no slouch of a load. 35 Grains under a 250 grain bullet is my favorite load to shoot out of anything chambered in 45 Colt.
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Old June 10, 2024, 08:42 AM   #5
ligonierbill
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+1 on what deerslayer said. And I neglected to answer question #3. I have not used paper cartridges in mine, but in a front stuffer, it's simply a way to have your load preset. The loading principal is the same. You need to seat the ball with the loading lever (or remove the cylinder and use a loading stand) to seal the cylinder. The ball is slightly oversized; I use a 0.451 roundball in mine. When you seat the ball, you'll actually shave a small ring. That seals the cylinder and ensures the ball stays in place until you touch off the powder. I load 30 grains FFFg.
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Old June 10, 2024, 09:31 AM   #6
Ricklin
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I am a fan

Yup a cylinder stand or press is the bee's knees for the 1858 Remmie. Easier to see that I am shaving that ring, and I feel like I am more consistent using the cylinder press.
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Old June 10, 2024, 08:38 PM   #7
armoredman
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If I may...I think I know a little...and I mean a little.



Quote:
1) would the brass rounds use BP or smokeless powder?
Both.





I also shot a few rounds with the same gun yesterday with a nice load of 6.8 grains of Accurate Arms #2 under a cast and powder coated 200 grain Lee SWC. Make sure you do NOT try to use powder coated bullets for black powder - they have to have lube in the grooves for fouling control, like such.



Quote:
2) how would one reload without a press? The chap referred to using paper in the process and
pointed to brass rounds with what appeared to have a paper ring between the bullet and case.
That isn't any kind of paper cartridge I've ever seen, but it DOES sound like a paper patched bullet, not the same thing.


Quote:
3) this is more related to using paper cartridges...I've watched a number of videos showing how to
make em but few seem to show how they are put into the cylinders....when they are inserted into
each chamber is the ramrod used to smunch them down or are they just left as they were put in?
Yes, just like this. Those were my first try, without lube - bad juju. I will do them again dipping in the SPG tropic lube.





I love my Remington New Model Army "1858", but after switching to the conversion cylinder, I probably won't switch back unless I have to, like I run out of large pistol primers and can't find any more. I mentioned I fired it yesterday - I hit a 3/4 scale steel IDPA target at 100 yards with that smokeless load. Not all six to be certain...Ok, it was just once, but it WAS the first shot!
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Old June 10, 2024, 08:47 PM   #8
georgehwbush
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silly, if you hit it the first shot you are supposed to put the gun up, take pictures and not tell anyone that it was "luck" !
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Old June 10, 2024, 09:47 PM   #9
ThomasJ2352
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or if your using paper then all six went through the same hole!!!
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Old June 11, 2024, 09:59 AM   #10
armoredman
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Yeah....there were witnesses, too many to eliminate.

BTW, I forgot to explain that my conversion cylinder is a Howell, which is rated for "cowboy loads" of 850 FPS or less. It works very well, indeed, dropped into my Uberti with no fitting required whatsoever.

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Old June 11, 2024, 03:23 PM   #11
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Isn't a case full of black a "Cowboy Load"? I know they mean them pip squeak SASS rounds. I still don't see how a black powder round could generate the pressure needed to hurt anything. I mean what's the difference in me shoving a 240 grain Kaido on top of 30 grains of powder and shoving a 250 LRNFP on top of 30 ish grains in a cartridge?
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Old June 12, 2024, 11:13 AM   #12
armoredman
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well, because I've been told "Cowboy Load" doesn't mean it has to be black powder, back when I sold the stuff at a gunshop in Tucson. And yes, from what I've been told, a "case full of black", what I loaded just two nights ago, doesn't have enough energy to hurt modern steel. That was homemade 2F, about 78%, loaded to crunch of 1/8 inch, meaning the bullet compressed the load about 1/8th of an inch, same 200gr Lee cast seen above with SPG Tropic lube in the groove. These should be mild little poppers - last time I fired this powder in this revolver, it generated just over 550 FPS, but the load was lighter. Maybe I'll break 600 FPS this time.
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Old June 12, 2024, 07:19 PM   #13
44 Dave
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I am shooting .44 WCF over .36 gr of FFFg, and they will dent "cheaper" iron targets.

Last edited by 44 Dave; June 13, 2024 at 01:25 PM.
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Old June 13, 2024, 01:11 PM   #14
armoredman
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AR500 steel, no iron here.

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Old June 14, 2024, 02:11 AM   #15
radom
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me am do not get a rem as the colts pain the ass they are are 1000% BETTER .
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Old June 14, 2024, 03:46 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radom View Post
me am do not get a rem as the colts pain the ass they are are 1000% BETTER .
What?
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Old June 14, 2024, 07:28 AM   #17
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Not sure what that means, either. Colt repros can be just as fun as any other reproduction black powder pistol.

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