Colt revolving rifle

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Whitworth

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Watching my favorite western, "El Dorado" with John Wayne, Robert Mitchum, James Cann and Arthur Hunnicutt playing "Bull", a crusty old ex Confederate and Indian fighter. He carries a Colt revolving rifle, anybody here shoot one?
 

longcruise

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The above post was supposed to go into a whole different topic.¿¿??
 

Zonie

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The Colt Lightning was a pump action rifle.
We don't talk about Colt Lightning rifles or any other guns that shoot self contained cartridges on the forum.

Now, if you want to talk about the Colt "Revolving rifle" that's ok.
The first one was made in 1855. They came in both sporting calibers and military calibers.
Colt was a big believer in those guns and he managed to sell over 9000 to the Army.
They were used in the Third Seminole War in Florida.

They never were popular with the men who used them largely because like the cap & ball pistols they were known to chain fire. The last place you want your supporting hand to be on a rifle if that happens is in front of the cylinder.
 
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Crow-Feather

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We don't talk about Colt Lightning rifles or any other guns that shoot self contained cartridges on the forum.
From Wikipedia
The Model 1855, which was the most widely produced revolving rifle, was available in .36, .44 and .56 caliber. Four barrel lengths were available: 15, 18, 21 and 24 inches. A six shot cylinder was used if the caliber was .36 or the .44. If the caliber was .56, a five-shot cylinder was used.[10]

A revolving rifle used percussion caps, like revolving pistols of the time. A cartridge (consisting of powder and a lead ball) was loaded into the front of the chamber and then compressed with a plunger that was located beneath the barrel. Once the cylinder's chambers were loaded, percussion caps were placed over the vent nipples at the rear of the cylinder. The weapon was now ready to fire. In addition to being susceptible to chain fire problems, the revolving cylinder design also tended to spray lead splinters into the wrist and hand of the user.[11] Revolving pistols did not suffer from this problem since the user kept both hands behind the cylinder while firing a pistol.
 

Whitworth

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Thanks for the replies. I believe the one Bull carried didn't have full length wood, I'll have to look closer next time, I did notice he was wearing a CSA buckle though. When rapid follow up shots were needed after emptying his Colt rifle he was left an unmentionable to keep up the covering fire rather than take the time to reload that thing although bracing the stock on your thigh for ramming paper cartridges would be handy :thumb:.
 

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That is precisely the method for loading as specified in the Civil War period manual-- by resting the butt on the upper left thigh.
 

KDMEEK

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For those interested, here is a shot of Bull’s rifle.
There was likely two used, as this shot shows one with a longer forearm. Both examples look to be modified from their original form, probably the barrel has been cut down, as well as the forearm.
1620149392072.png

From Wikipedia
The Model 1855, which was the most widely produced revolving rifle, was available in .36, .44 and .56 caliber. Four barrel lengths were available: 15, 18, 21 and 24 inches. A six shot cylinder was used if the caliber was .36 or the .44. If the caliber was .56, a five-shot cylinder was used.[10]

A revolving rifle used percussion caps, like revolving pistols of the time. A cartridge (consisting of powder and a lead ball) was loaded into the front of the chamber and then compressed with a plunger that was located beneath the barrel. Once the cylinder's chambers were loaded, percussion caps were placed over the vent nipples at the rear of the cylinder. The weapon was now ready to fire. In addition to being susceptible to chain fire problems, the revolving cylinder design also tended to spray lead splinters into the wrist and hand of the user.[11] Revolving pistols did not suffer from this problem since the user kept both hands behind the cylinder while firing a pistol.
 

TFoley

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I seem to recall reading that Colonel Hiram Berdan's Sharpshooters were issued with this powder-burning device for use as a skirmishing and 'sharpshooting' arm.

It wasn't long before the shortcomings and lack of longer range accuracy led to them being dumped in favour of a real rifle.
 

KDMEEK

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they were made in other calibers as well, and in at least three different frame sizes. Both the military and the full stock sporting rifles were manufactured with 21", 24", 27", 31", 31 3/16", 31 5/16", 37 5/16" and 37 1/2" barrels. While the .44 and .56 calibers are the most common in the medium frame, .40 , .50, .60 and .64 caliber examples are known, and a few early production examples in .58 caliber. In the larger frame size, a .60 caliber (20 gauge) and a .75 caliber( 10 gauge) shotguns were made, as well as a few experimental musket size calibers.. I know of a few metallic cartridge conversions, including two that are modified for the Thuer cartridge.
 

KDMEEK

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I seem to recall reading that Colonel Hiram Berdan's Sharpshooters were issued with this powder-burning device for use as a skirmishing and 'sharpshooting' arm.

It wasn't long before the shortcomings and lack of longer range accuracy led to them being dumped in favour of a real rifle.
The Berdan's didn't like them as they had been promised Sharps rifles, and the rifles were later issued to other units, notably the 21st Ohio who used them to good effect at Chickamauga. They were also initially issued to the 37th Illinois who used them at Pea Ridge and Prairie Grove, and retained some of them , with losses to attrition, through to the end. One of the shortcomings of the longer rifles is that they are hard to hold up on target when holding them at the trigger guard, as recommended by Colt. This is likely the reason that so many well used examples have shortened barrels.
 

wb78963

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I never got a good look at it but it must have been an original I don't thing a replica was ever made.
Also I suspect it may have the cylinder modified to shoot unmentionables to make reloading faster. At any rate that had to be a very expense prop.
Bunk
 

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I seem to recall reading that Colonel Hiram Berdan's Sharpshooters were issued with this powder-burning device for use as a skirmishing and 'sharpshooting' arm.

It wasn't long before the shortcomings and lack of longer range accuracy led to them being dumped in favour of a real rifle.
Well, it could hit a church bell at quite a distance. At least, that was what the movie's writers suggested.
 

KDMEEK

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I never got a good look at it but it must have been an original I don't thing a replica was ever made.
Also I suspect it may have the cylinder modified to shoot unmentionables to make reloading faster. At any rate that had to be a very expense prop.
Bunk
It was certainly an original, probably rented from one of the prop houses. Anyone know what house Batjak productions used?
 

wb78963

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Well, it could hit a church bell at quite a distance. At least, that was what the movie's writers suggested.
And don't forget Hollywood can make a single action six shot unmentionable shoot eight or ten times or miss at point blank range with a sawed off shotgun.
So don't believe what you see
Bunk
 

Crow-Feather

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And don't forget Hollywood can make a single action six shot unmentionable shoot eight or ten times or miss at point blank range with a sawed off shotgun.
So don't believe what you see
Bunk
I think that if you count Bull's shots at that bell, it might surprise you how many shots that rifle can fire before a reload.
 
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