why not the notch?

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I do not currently have any C&B revolvers but have had several over the years. My practice for carrying a loaded one was to place the hammer in the notch between cylinders. That always seemed to be a safe practice as far as I knew. But, I see a lot of mentions of loading only five cylinders and resting the hammer on the empty one. Someone please explain why they consider using the notch an unsafe practice.
 
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If you shoot in competitions that allow C&B revolvers the rules require you to rest the hammer on an uploaded cylinder.that is where a lot of the carry on an empty chamber comes from.

I have read that the normal
Practice back in the day was to load all chambers and carry on the safety pins. However, I’m sure that is probably up for debate and someone will be here shortly to say the opposite.

I don’t shoot in competitions with Cap and Ball, so I load all chambers and use the safety pins. Plus, all my C&B shooting is on a private range.
 
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Phil Coffins

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The notches or the pins are fairly useful when the revolver is carried in a full flap holster. In a open to holster the hammer can be bumped and wind up resting on a live load. Or as has happened to me, on drawing he revolver you find it on full cock. This was on a hunt when I had been forcing my way through heavy brush.
 

Uncle Miltie

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Remington pattern revolvers have the notches, which I feel are quite safe to rest the hammer on when carrying a loaded cylinder. Same thing goes for the Colts, which have pins, and if in good condition work well for their intended purpose. Carrying on an open chamber came about after the 1873 Colt revolver came out.
 

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This subject keeps coming up periodically. Some replicas on the Colt revolvers don't have pins or maybe just one pin. To the best of my research Percussion guns in the day were NEVER loaded with just 5 rounds. The problem came with the 1873 Colt peacemaker. On the 45 Long Colt the heads of the cases are just about touching one another, you really cannot lower the hammer and have the firing pin resting between rounds. Then, holsters changed with a looser fit for a fast draw. In any event on a Cartridge revolver you should load just five. I have done a fair amount of reading and in original diaries I actually read one recommendation to load five (On the cartridge guns) if you were going to be riding a horse or the holster was going to be bouncing around.
So, back to the percussion. Most percussions fit pretty deep into a California type holster. I have tried rubbing up against door jams and just about any conceivable way you could catch the hammer and cause it to move in a holstered gun and cause a misfire and I simply can't do it. The safest thing is to sell all your guns and take up golf. In any event, load 6 on percussion revolvers.
 

smoothshooter

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If you shoot in competitions that allow C&B revolvers the rules require you to rest the hammer on an uploaded cylinder.that is where a lot of the carry on an empty cylinder comes from.

I have read that the normal
Practice back in the day was to load all cylinders and carry on the safety pins. However, I’m sure that is probably up for debate and someone will be here shortly to say the opposite.

I don’t shoot in competitions with Cap and Ball, so I load all cylinders and use the safety pins. Plus, all my C&B shooting is on a private range.

I think “chambers” is the word for the 6 holes in the “cylinder”.
 
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It wasn't likely that someone carrying a loaded percussion revolver would give up a potentially life saving and slower to reload round by loading 5 and keeping a chamber empty. The pin or pins, and notches were there for a reason. The Walker and Dragoon have one, it was obviously designed to be used. Colt made it more convenient later on by adding a pin in between each chamber.

I often wonder what the design intent was when the Colt Model P or S&W Schofield, Rem 1875 etc were designed , unless carrying with 5 rounds loaded or on half cock was what you were supposed to do. Colt included an original copy of the loading instructions with my 2nd Gen Colt Navy, I would think there was an official procedure we can see somewhere, or a period military manual instructing users to keep a chamber empty.

This mindset carried over way into the modern era because I was talking to a guy who was a Wells fargo armored car guard in the 1990s , and they carried S&W .38's, and company policy was to keep the chamber empty under the hammer. I don't know if the person in charge of these policies was extremely old or it was just to help mitigate liability in case a gun was dropped on the hammer and the hammer block failed, but they enforced this apparently.
 

45D

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I often wonder what the design intent was when the Colt Model P or S&W Schofield, Rem 1875 etc were designed , unless carrying with 5 rounds loaded or on half cock was what you were supposed to do. Colt included an original copy of the loading instructions with my 2nd Gen Colt Navy, I would think there was an official procedure we can see somewhere, or a period military manual

Well, I think the design "intent" was to have a safety. Sometimes designers can't see the forest for the trees too! There is another (little known) "design flaw" in the SAA which was to have an action stop "built in", but it didn't work out either . . .

I just think the" drop test" simply went right over their collective heads and the "weakness of the safety notch and/or the trigger sear wasn't on "pre- radar"!!

The supposed action stop was an excellent idea ( which is why every SA I tune gets one) but they weren't ready since it would be some time before CNC would be around (and it still wouldn't work!)!!

So there you go, 2 design flaws in the most famous SA revolver in the world!! So . . .

Mike
 
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I do not trust the pins on reproduction Colt revolvers. They’re not the sturdiest design & frankly, the parts in the reproductions are often softer than they should be. The reproduction Remington notches are theoretically safe but I’ve yet to see one in person where the parts fitment/tolerances were good enough that it actually works as it’s intended to. Actual Remingtons were/are probably fine. I have a NAA Mini & I trust the notches on it because it’s made of good steel with proper heat treatment & has tight tolerances/good fitting which the average Italian reproduction does not. I know an awful lot of folks on the internet trust their pins/notches emphatically, but I don’t. It’s up to each individual owner to inspect the quality/workmanship in their respective revolvers & decide if they trust it. Death/maiming is a potentially high cost for one more shot in what is a recreational gun for just about any of us. But it’s not my place to judge for others what they’re comfortable with.
 
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I do not trust the pins on reproduction Colt revolvers. They’re not the sturdiest design & frankly, the parts in the reproductions are often softer than they should be. The reproduction Remington notches are theoretically safe but I’ve yet to see one in person where the parts fitment/tolerances were good enough that it actually works as it’s intended to. Actual Remingtons were/are probably fine. I have a NAA Mini & I trust the notches on it because it’s made of good steel with proper heat treatment & has tight tolerances/good fitting which the average Italian reproduction does not. I know an awful lot of folks on the internet trust their pins/notches emphatically, but I don’t. It’s up to each individual owner to inspect the quality/workmanship in their respective revolvers & decide if they trust it. Death/maiming is a potentially high cost for one more shot in what is a recreational gun for just about any of us. But it’s not my place to judge for others what they’re comfortable with.

I have a feeling people were less safety conscious back then , but I'm sure people put hammers down on empty chambers too.
 
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@BatBoy hit it with post number 2.
All chambers where loaded and the notch used and trusted in the early era's of daily carry and use.
The spill-over of needed safety within formal matches of these antique firearms has lead the way,
(Which began well before the 20th century)
The common practice to shoot 5 rounds to "prove" or "score" a group, is centuries old too,
Has lead to the practice of just 5,,
There is no "reason",, just safe use in crowds. (Darwin Theory in effect)
 
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toot

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This subject keeps coming up periodically. Some replicas on the Colt revolvers don't have pins or maybe just one pin. To the best of my research Percussion guns in the day were NEVER loaded with just 5 rounds. The problem came with the 1873 Colt peacemaker. On the 45 Long Colt the heads of the cases are just about touching one another, you really cannot lower the hammer and have the firing pin resting between rounds. Then, holsters changed with a looser fit for a fast draw. In any event on a Cartridge revolver you should load just five. I have done a fair amount of reading and in original diaries I actually read one recommendation to load five (On the cartridge guns) if you were going to be riding a horse or the holster was going to be bouncing around.
So, back to the percussion. Most percussions fit pretty deep into a California type holster. I have tried rubbing up against door jams and just about any conceivable way you could catch the hammer and cause it to move in a holstered gun and cause a misfire and I simply can't do it. The safest thing is to sell all your guns and take up golf. In any event, load 6 on percussion revolvers.
ROGER THAT- that is why they were made with 6 cylinders. if you had a 31 CAL. and loaded only 4 of them you are at a great disadvantage! load all of them, some time that might save your life, if the other guy has an empty cylinder of his gun not loaded. jmho.
 

toot

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@BatBoy hit it with post number 2.
All chambers where loaded and the notch used and trusted in the early era's of daily carry and use.
The spill-over of needed safety within formal matches of these antique firearms has lead the way,
(Which began well before the 20th century)
The common practice to shoot 5 rounds to "prove" or "score" a group, is centuries old too,
Has lead to the practice of just 5,,
There is no "reason",, just safe use in crowds. (Darwin Theory in effect)
thank GOD, for Darwin!!
 
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Mike Bellivue even says most people loaded 6 but he loads 5 for safety, and people keep hating on him

CAS has rules in effect because there's always idiots who will shoot themselves or others. I think you now have to shoot with a 2 hand hold and there's no more 2 Gun Duelist in the matches, because a guy gut shot himself.

Loading has been off the clock for a while now
 

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