Best cap and ball revolver under $500?

Discussion in 'Handguns' started by Ben Meyer, Dec 27, 2019.

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  1. Dec 27, 2019 #1

    Ben Meyer

    Ben Meyer

    Ben Meyer

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    Less $$$ would be nice($3-400). My so is interested in one. Wants stout and reliable, .44 cal. I'm guessing Pietta or Uberti, but are there any other halfway decent ones?
     
  2. Dec 27, 2019 #2

    brawny man

    brawny man

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    Ben
    If your intention is for hunting or target practice I would recommend the "Ruger Old Army". They are no longer manufactured. You would have to locate a used one. They are stout and reliable. Expect to pay at least $400. I have found them for less but had to look for a long time. If you do a search you will find many how to videos on this fine revolver. Good luck.
     
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  3. Dec 27, 2019 #3

    bang

    bang

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    Best affordable with very good accuracy is my Pietta Remington 1858 target. 329 Cabelas. No issues with any parts. All available and affordable if needed.
     
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  4. Dec 27, 2019 #4

    Dphar1950

    Dphar1950

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    Ruger is pretty clunky. I like Uberti and perfer Colts. They are more ergonomic. The problem with chain stores and low priced guns in that the Italians are not, or at least were not back when I was doing such things, consistent. So rather than buying from Cabalas I look to some place like Cimarron. If I were buying one the fluted cylinder 1860 would be the choice. If you carry it it can be loaded all 6 and the hammer can jump the pin and not rotate to put cap under the hammer. The lock bolt in the flute should prevent this. Mine did. And it was my daily carry gun for a couple of years back in my younger days. Verify but this should be the case. All the round cylinder guns I had would jump the pins.
     
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  5. Dec 27, 2019 #5
  6. Dec 27, 2019 #6

    rodwha

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    My Pietta Remington New Model Army Sheriff has been 100% reliable with several hundred rounds through it. It was on sale Christmas 2013 for $199 with a free starter kit (just about worthless).

    But I had to file the nose of the hammer just a tad to get a secure fit into the safety notches. It also needed the loading window opened up to allow anything other than a ball to be loaded. I also smoothed the edges of the hand and bolt stop. It shoots a bit left at 15 yds so one day I’ll dovetail a sight so I can fix that. The chambers are grossly undersized so it’s been reamed to .449” and chamfered (.452” grooves), but I’m still considering opening them up closer to groove.

    I’d opt for the Uberti version were it me. Dovetailed sight and .450”chambers and .452” grooves from what I’ve seen posted with newer models.

    Colt models may have cap jam issues and Uberti models typically have short arbors (not a big deal if you shim it).

    My Ruger has been 100% reliable once I switched to Rem #10 caps for my ToTW nipples. Excellent pistol for sure.
     
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  7. Dec 27, 2019 #7

    Grenadier1758

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    See, Ben, I knew you would soon be looking for another pistol. Since we are black powder enablers here on the forum, I will offer my recommendations.

    For sturdy and reliable but one notch above least expensive, I recommend an 1858 steel framed Remington New Model Army. The Cimarron versions are made by Uberti to Cimarron specifications. This is a higher standard than Cabelas or other vendors and perhaps the best of the new revolvers although at a higher cost. New, out of the box Pietas have recently been considered being built to a higher standard than Uberti. Both will likely be good shooting revolvers. Be aware that to meet the desired price point, so expect to have to do some deburring of the hammer, bolt and hand for the smoothest operation no matter where you buy the revolver. You will need a pistol sized nipple wrench and revolver nipples often require #10 caps. Most cappers can't access the nipples in their recesses but it's not a real problem to cap by hand unless you have large fingers.
     
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  8. Dec 27, 2019 #8

    Ben Meyer

    Ben Meyer

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    I want a muzzleloading pistol. My son wants the BP revolver. Of course, once he gets one, I'll probably shoot it, like it and want one too, so.....
     
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  9. Dec 27, 2019 #9

    Woodnbow

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    09856AE3-51E4-46C6-AE2F-65984500B7FC.jpeg 40943820-2AC8-43BB-9075-42996D570A80.jpeg 1860 Colt Army model. The most accurate replication of the original are made by Uberti.
     
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  10. Dec 27, 2019 #10

    sawyer04

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    I have a couple of palmettos that Dixie sold years ago, early 70's. These old guns I acquired on trades. With a little work and tinkering they are great shooters. Parts are not really available, but other parts can be made and adopted. The point I am trying to make is Uberti and Pietta are in your price range. I have both and brand new, I wasn't satisfied with the actions. They are good solid reliable weapons and parts are available. I disassembled them and polished the actions and made a hair correction on the Uberti's timing. There is always something a person won't be satisfied with. Same now as in the old days.
    I have had three Rugers and traded them. They were bulky and sort of clumsy for me. Pietta, if I had only one to pick from, they are plentiful and easy to get parts in my area.
     
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  11. Dec 27, 2019 #11

    Dphar1950

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    All the 19th c designs are intended to have some hand fitting done. Be it a long arm or short. If they were hand fitted and ran smooth etc. They would cost a LOT more. I have had 3rd gen Colt SAAs in the shop so rough in the advance hand gallery that they would literally eat the advance hand spring. So I epoxied small stones on piano wire to smooth the frame in this area. Now Brownell's sells stones for this. So expect to do a little work. Often the sear/lock bolt spring is far too heavy and needs to the thinned and tapered. The sear notches on many revolvers are tiny so be careful if polishing the full cock. If you get it too shallow it might hit the 1/2 cock. So leave the depth alone unless you are well experienced. Also the hammer should not impact the nipple but be .005/.010" off.Enough to mash the cap but not enough to batter the nipple. The nipples can be shortened SLIGHTLY to achieve this. The lock bolt cam on the hammer generally needs smoothing too. And the lock bolt legs often need the machine marks polished out. The top of the lock bolt will run smoother on the cylinder if its polished but do not change the contour.
     
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  12. Dec 28, 2019 #12

    F.G. Ford

    F.G. Ford

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    THAT is a work of art!
    The 51 Navy is a fine gun and all, but the 1860 with fluted cylinder is a joy to hold and shoot.
    It can shoot conicals, but they are a pain to fiddle with, round balls load easy and are more than accurate at twenty five yards. The sights really won't let you shoot at fifty and a hundred yards, but it is fun to try.
     
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  13. Dec 28, 2019 #13

    bang

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    Never had issues with my Pietta 1858s and undersize cylinder bore. Both hit inside 2" at 25 yards all day and with all 7 spare cylinders.
     
  14. Dec 28, 2019 #14

    azmntman

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    I was happy with both my 1858's from Southwest Shooters (I think??). The 12" barrel buntlines are a hoot and they performed flawlessly from 1st shot out of the box with no fiddling.

    Of course I would steer you to a ROA but they would start at your upper limit for a shooter.

    Let us know. We care. We are addicts too:rolleyes:
     
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  15. Dec 28, 2019 #15

    Treestalker

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    Ben, I believe for your stated finances, you can buy a really well made copy of most any Colt or Remington revolver you like. I would certainly recommend attending a shoot and try to handle and fire as many different models as I could. Probably one style will suit you and your needs best. After you aquire a revolver, have it tuned by a person who knows what they're doing. I believe you will be very pleased with a Remington New Model Army, in either .44 or .36 caliber. They are very strong and the .36 has a considerable velocity over the Colt models, to say nothing of the sight arrangement.
     
  16. Dec 28, 2019 #16

    Columbus

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    EMF has a great sale going on the steel Pietta 1858 Remingtons. 8" or 5 1/2" $234 including a spare cylinder.
     
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  17. Dec 28, 2019 #17

    Dphar1950

    Dphar1950

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    Conicals in a Colt are a waste of time. If the revolver is good the RB will shoot pretty well the 75-100. My C&Bs shot best with enough FFF powder to give a little compression on the charge with the ball seated flush with the cylinder face. I would avoid the "magnum" or other hot caps for replica powders.
     
  18. Dec 29, 2019 #18

    Smokey Plainsman

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    New I’d say Uberti Remington. Not perfect by no means, but the best in that price range.
     
  19. Dec 29, 2019 #19

    Tom Compton

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    For just shooting it’s the ROA. For original style ?????
     
  20. Dec 29, 2019 #20

    Tom A Hawk

    Tom A Hawk

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    The Uberti 1858 Remington has a dove tailed front sight and allows for windage adjustment. Its pretty hard to beat for the price.
     

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