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To much is made of short arbors

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I keep listening to this dribble and from time to time feel the need to correct this false notion.
A short arbor has nothing at all do do directly with accuracy or strength. It's only benefit is ease of consistent arbor depth gauging which is easily accomplished with a feeler gauge or better yet a lug gauge made to fit the wedge head under lug.
Most open frame guns in use today have short arbors and keep right on working as they have for decades with out being corrected.
Truth is even when the arbor is initially end fit, soon as a soft wedge gets beat up and deformed chances are it no longer is making contact at the end anyway.
 
I keep listening to this dribble and from time to time feel the need to correct this false notion.
A short arbor has nothing at all do do directly with accuracy or strength. It's only benefit is ease of consistent arbor depth gauging which is easily accomplished with a feeler gauge or better yet a lug gauge made to fit the wedge head under lug.
Most open frame guns in use today have short arbors and keep right on working as they have for decades with out being corrected.
Truth is even when the arbor is initially end fit, soon as a soft wedge gets beat up and deformed chances are it no longer is making contact at the end anyway.
"MOST"

Your silly. At best 50% have short arbors. Piettas have not had short arbors since the transition to CNC. Which was the very early 2000's. That leaves Uberti. Most, but not all, Ubeti Colt replicas have short arbor issues, but NOT ALL.
 
I keep listening to this dribble and from time to time feel the need to correct this false notion.
A short arbor has nothing at all do do directly with accuracy or strength. It's only benefit is ease of consistent arbor depth gauging which is easily accomplished with a feeler gauge or better yet a lug gauge made to fit the wedge head under lug.
Most open frame guns in use today have short arbors and keep right on working as they have for decades with out being corrected.
Truth is even when the arbor is initially end fit, soon as a soft wedge gets beat up and deformed chances are it no longer is making contact at the end anyway.
Yep, dribble unless you are doing cylinder swaps on the clock. When I was shooting CASS the crew that came up with the stages would always include a 5 shot pistol reload if one of us using cap and ball showed up. Call it friendly competition if you want. We would have to do a cylinder swap and cap at the line while on the clock. Not that difficult with 58s (think Pale Rider), but with an open top with a short arbor?? No feeler gauges in use. Basic procedure was to use the brass pommel to pop the wedge out, hopefully catching on the screw on the side of the barrel and not go to the ground, disassemble the barrel from the frame, remove the empty cylinder and replace it with a loaded (less caps) one (I used 10-22 magazine holders on my belt to hold them), then cap. The wedge would be set in place with the knife pommel again (guess you could use the pistol grip of another handgun, but difficult to do without sweeping the range). If you were dealing with a gun that had a short arbor, you needed a ‘just right’ Goldilocks hit. Too hard and the cylinder wouldn’t rotate. To light, the thing might spontaneously disassemble. Get the dribble just right, and you were good to go. Also curious at to the traditional and proper place to store ones feeler gauges?
 
Yep, dribble unless you are doing cylinder swaps on the clock. When I was shooting CASS the crew that came up with the stages would always include a 5 shot pistol reload if one of us using cap and ball showed up. Call it friendly competition if you want. We would have to do a cylinder swap and cap at the line while on the clock. Not that difficult with 58s (think Pale Rider), but with an open top with a short arbor?? No feeler gauges in use. Basic procedure was to use the brass pommel to pop the wedge out, hopefully catching on the screw on the side of the barrel and not go to the ground, disassemble the barrel from the frame, remove the empty cylinder and replace it with a loaded (less caps) one (I used 10-22 magazine holders on my belt to hold them), then cap. The wedge would be set in place with the knife pommel again (guess you could use the pistol grip of another handgun, but difficult to do without sweeping the range). If you were dealing with a gun that had a short arbor, you needed a ‘just right’ Goldilocks hit. Too hard and the cylinder wouldn’t rotate. To light, the thing might spontaneously disassemble. Get the dribble just right, and you were good to go. Also curious at to the traditional and proper place to store ones feeler gauges?
Not having shot cap and ball, from your description it seems like cartridges would be faster than loading a new cylinder?
 
A short arbor has a lot to do with accuracy.
In fact if the arbor is not seated tight against the frame you will never get consistent “ good” accuracy.
If your targets are man sized targets at spitting distance then yes arbor fit isn’t no big deal.
But at those distances and size of targets rifling doesn’t matter much either.
I use an 1851 Uberti Navy for squirrel hunting,,and can make head shots pretty consistently at shots under 20 yards.
Before fixing the short arbor the shot group would fluctuate on the target at 25 yards with every removal of the cylinder .
This was shooting off a sand bag rest.
I also tweeked the sights for a better sight picture.
It has replaced my S&W model 17 for all my small game hunting under 25 yards.
 
Not having shot cap and ball, from your description it seems like cartridges would be faster than loading a new cylinder?
Cartridges!

Are you intentionally trying to discombobulate the traditional muzzleloader forum?

Right now, grown men are crying in their Holy Black and wiping away their tears with .018 pillow ticking.

I hope you're proud of yourself.
 
"MOST"

Your silly. At best 50% have short arbors. Piettas have not had short arbors since the transition to CNC. Which was the very early 2000's. That leaves Uberti. Most, but not all, Ubeti Colt replicas have short arbor issues, but NOT ALL.
The adjutive is " most" not "all" which incorporates factory Uberti's and 30 years worth of Pietta's. My 80 version 60 Pietta once worked over with a new trigger , front sight and crown job was as accurate as the 58 or ROA before it's over haul and that had more to do with the inferior sights it came with than accuracy potential.
If you get the wedge in the same depth with each reassembly using a gauge, you won't give up any accuracy to end fit or lack there of in my opinion.
 
Yup ! It's a good mod to make for the reason already mentioned but necessary to accuracy or longerveity it isn't !
I wonder why Colt didn’t just cut a few manufacturing corners to save some money and go with a short arbor if that is the case?

Checked two different vintage Colts (both with all matching serial numbers) and found both to put .003”/.005” pre-load on the bottom of the frame. To confirm we used shims (.002” to .006”) in the hole in the barrel assembly to find when the barrel and frame made contact. Do not know if that is how the guns left the factory, but that is how the were found 150 plus years later. The most recent Ubertis I have checked had arbors nearly an 1/8” short.
 
If you get the wedge in the same depth with each reassembly using a gauge, you won't give up any accuracy to end fit or lack there of in my opinion.
Another thought. Why not just put the gauge (aka shim) you are referring to on top of the arbor or in the barrel hole? Believe it would be easier than keeping track of and using it during every assembly? Correct things once and not worry about it every time you put the gun together. I must be missing something.
 
Is it possible to buy a new Uberti 1851 or 1860, take it out of the box, clean the grease off, load it correctly and have it shoot reliably and accurately without any concern about how long the arbor is?
They were made with a loading ram so that you didn't have to take it apart to reload it. If you do that and use it year after year without any problems why would you need to "fix" that?
If you enjoy tinkering with it or modifying it, go ahead. If you want to pay someone else to do that for you, go ahead. It's your gun and your money.
 
Is it possible to buy a new Uberti 1851 or 1860, take it out of the box, clean the grease off, load it correctly and have it shoot reliably and accurately without any concern about how long the arbor is?
They were made with a loading ram so that you didn't have to take it apart to reload it. If you do that and use it year after year without any problems why would you need to "fix" that?
If you enjoy tinkering with it or modifying it, go ahead. If you want to pay someone else to do that for you, go ahead. It's your gun and your money.
What happens when the cylinder binds up from powder residue? SOP is to disassemble, clean and reassemble. And for what it is worth, there are many variations for the short arbor fix. Using a gauge when assembling as the OP suggests is an every time you assemble fix. If one is mechanically competent enough to load, shoot and clean an open top revolver, they likely have the skills to make ‘permanent’ one time fix.

I do not understand the reluctance to make such an easy improvement/repair, nor do I understand why it is so difficult for the manufacturer, Uberti, to take care of before the gun leaves the factory. It must be me.
 
It's not an opinion but a verified fact.

A trigger job won't keep a wedge from getting beat up in a Walker.
An action job won't keep a wedge from getting beat up in a Walker.
Coil spring actions won't keep a wedge from getting beat up in a Walker. A heavier or lighter main spring won't keep a wedge from getting beat up in a Walker. Perfect sights won't keep a wedge from getting beat up in a Walker.

A corrected arbor will allow a Walker, Dragoon, Army or Navy from damaging the wedge, barrel and arbor even if fired 100% with maximum loads of triple 7.

It will also maintain the sight picture from shot to shot, reassembly after reassembly.

It's also the way Colt designed them and for some that pitch a fit about everything being "like the originals", they aren't if they aren't built like the originals. What's even more amazing is Mr DeLand apparently basis his "opinion " on nothing but reproductions . . . that have been built wrong from the beginning . . . but HE knows how they "really " were made . . .
This is the only forum, out of many I'm a member of, that this topic seems to be such an unknown problem. It's talked about rather often on other forums without the mud slinging that seems prevalent here. Mostly because one in particular can't seem to figure it out. Since he can't, its obviously just nonsense. Ignorance is bliss they say.

Mike
 
Well, I thought my 1851 uberti didn't suffer from the short arbor but, after talking to Mike here ,he was correct it's short. I put some perma blue on the end of the arbor and it didn't transfer to the bottom of the arbor hole. I made a spacer using a #12 pan head screw. It was 0.073 too short. When I first got it I evidently put it to small of a washer and it must not been sitting flat, because I had a gap between the bottom of the barrel to frame fit. But after the perma blue and the same washer used before still no transfer and the barrel to frame had fit with no gaps. After measuring I determined the needed 0.073 spacer. Now I get transfer and the wedge is a very snug fit unlike before, I could remove it with very little thumb pressure....I have to tap it in now. Barrel to cylinder gap is .003 and doesn't change when I take it apart and put it back. It did before this. We will see if I get better or more consistent groups. It shot pretty well before but had some flyers.

Just wanted to say thanks to Mike for posting info.
 
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