Colt Walker had a long run as most powerful handgun

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troy2000

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I never knew this:
The 1847 Colt Walker was the most powerful handgun available up until the 1935 debut of the Smith and Wesson model 27, the very first .357 magnum chambering.
That's almost ninety years, spanning from the era of caplock guns to modern magnums.
add: Again according to Wikipedia, "The Walker, unlike most succeeding martial pistols and revolvers, was a practical weapon out to about 100 yards." It held a black powder charge of 60 grains in each chamber.

Never shoulda read that; now I want one.
 
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Bighorserider

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I've never fired one, but I'd guess given their weight that recoil shouldn't be too bad even with max loads.
 

kh54

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My Uberti Walker is a lot of fun to shoot. They are so heavy that the recoil isn’t as bad as you would think. I understand that there were one or two handguns (revolvers?) made outside of the US that also predate the .357, perhaps in England, that were more powerful. Does anyone have information about this?

And troy2000, I might be able to help you with acquiring a nice reproduction. I’m not trying to make a sale but to help a fellow enthusiast. PM if you want details. (My apologies if it’s inappropriate in this forum to make such an offer.)
 

William Lincoln

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With 55 grains of T 7 and a RB the Walker still will
clock out at 357 magnum power. This load should
only be used in modern Replica steel chambers.
It is the proverbial "Horse pistol."
 

troy2000

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With 55 grains of T 7 and a RB the Walker still will
clock out at 357 magnum power. This load should
only be used in modern Replica steel chambers.
It is the proverbial "Horse pistol."
I understand that with the originals, loading a full 60 grains per chamber occasionally resulted in a ruptured cylinder; 50 grains was considered a safer load. But there's at least one account of taking an enemy down at 100 yards; I doubt many modern handguns could do that.
 

William Lincoln

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I have a Uberti Walker. The only issue is the rammer handle
dropping on heavy charges. Hovey Smith did a series on
building a Walker and used his for hog & deer. There are some fixes for the dropping handle, but string works also. It is a
heavy piece, not one you hold out front for long.
 

troy2000

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I have a Uberti Walker. The only issue is the rammer handle
dropping on heavy charges. Hovey Smith did a series on
building a Walker and used his for hog & deer. There are some fixes for the dropping handle, but string works also. It is a
heavy piece, not one you hold out front for long.
I understand the earlier original Walkers had the same problem, and the period-correct fix was a rawhide loop around the barrel and loading lever. Supposedly they took care of the problem in the later ones...
 

rshveyda

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C&Rsenal on YouTube just did a nice, long video on the Colt Walker and it's history. They use a reproduction gun for demonstration and shooting purposed, but it's got lots of really good production value and info. So far, they've done the Walker and a two-part episode on the Paterson, and are promising more soon. And you can watch the hand shaking of the woman who demonstrates loading and firing the huge horse pistol as she tries to aim the beast. Worth a viewing.

"And forget about that poor, dead horse."
 
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Tom A Hawk

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I understand that with the originals, loading a full 60 grains per chamber occasionally resulted in a ruptured cylinder; 50 grains was considered a safer load. But there's at least one account of taking an enemy down at 100 yards; I doubt many modern handguns could do that.
I used to shoot handgun metallic silhouette competition out to 200 meters. Scoring hits at 100 yards is not a problem at all.
 

troy2000

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I used to shoot handgun metallic silhouette competition out to 200 meters. Scoring hits at 100 yards is not a problem at all.
But the hit actually taking down an opponent might be... and that's what the Walkers apparently delivered. Medical officer John 'Rip' Ford wrote at the time that the revolver would carry as far and strike with the same or greater force than the .54 caliber Mississippi Rifle.
 
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Tom A Hawk

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But the hit actually taking down an opponent might be... and that's what the Walkers apparently delivered. Medical officer John 'Rip' Ford wrote at the time that the revolver would carry as far and strike with the same or greater force than the .54 caliber Mississippi Rifle.
I suggest Med Officer Ford either exaggerated or is mistaken. I have a 2nd Model Dragoon firing a 50 grain charge, While it is a potent sixgun, it is nothing close to a .54 caliber rifle. And, as far as taking down an opponent, a .44 unmentionable outranks a Walker. I've taken deer at 90 yards.
 

troy2000

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I suggest Med Officer Ford either exaggerated or is mistaken. I have a 2nd Model Dragoon firing a 50 grain charge, While it is a potent sixgun, it is nothing close to a .54 caliber rifle. And, as far as taking down an opponent, a .44 unmentionable outranks a Walker. I've taken deer at 90 yards.
I suggest I have no reason to take your word, over that of a man who actually owned and used the original guns during the Mexican American War.
 

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