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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  Gun Reviews (Moderators: Marshal Halloway, Arcey)  |  Topic: Pietta 1851 navy 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: Pietta 1851 navy  (Read 18300 times)
Kent Shootwell
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« on: August 06, 2015, 03:12:27 pm »


My Cabalas 1851 was chosen from the two the store had on hand. The other had a slight scratch on the barrel right out of the box. This one looks pretty fair for the price other then some rolled edges on the barrel. The bluing is good and the color case on the frame is OK for the cyanide  type. The wedge was very tight and took a hammer and brass punch to remove. Although the wedge fit the barrel and arbor loosely the two didn't line up to each other. I filed the lower long side of the arbor till the gun could be reassembled and disassembled with a modest tap of a piece of hard wood. The arbor is a close fit and of the correct length to the barrel. Bolt timing is perfect and the trigger engaged the hammer just as lock up of the cylinder. I found the internals to be well fit and of good finish. Trigger pull is light enough with a bit of creep. The grips have a red stain that came off on my hand and is still rubbing off after shooting and cleaning twice. The bore is a disappointment as it's full length with chatter in the grooves and some scratches on the lands. Despite this it shot fairly well with no failures or hang ups. Point of impact is 1" right and 4.5" high at 20 yards from point of aim. Cleaning showed lead in the barrel but no caps hung on the hammer or dropped in the action. Shooting was done with 20 grains GOEX 3f a felt wad soaked in SPG, .375" round ball and Remington #10 caps. CCI #10 caps were too tight. I have now lapped the barrel to remove most of the roughness and found the bore very tight at the last 1/2" and a bit tight at the breach end. I'll post how it shoots now when I get a chance.
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Kent Shootwell
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« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2015, 02:52:38 pm »

A up date; I shot it after lapping the barrel and found no improvement in the group size or impact point. How ever there is no trace of leading now. I did remove the stain from the grips and did a bit of reshaping then stained and gave them a dull oil finish. Along with removing the proof marks from the frame I did a charcoal color case hardening of it and the loading lever. The cyanide case was very thin so this should hold up better.
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Abilene
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« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2015, 03:45:29 pm »

Nice job!
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Johnson Barr
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« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2015, 12:41:15 pm »

My pet load for both my Pietta '51 and '61 is 16 grs. (1.0cc) APP BP substitute with 16grs. (1.0cc) filler on top; I use Quaker Quick Grits, covered by a Hornady .375 swaged round ball with just a dab of lithium grease on top. Both girls shoot an inch or so high at 15 yards. You might also try relieving and polishing the barrel throat. That in itself will help tighten your groups up a bit.
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Professor Marvel
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« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2015, 04:07:42 pm »

My Good Kent -
that is an exceptional job of case-hardening! I have seen some of your case work in prior posts and I am quite envious!
do you normally have to brace the bits up or otherwise stabilze them in any manner to keep warpage from occurring ?

I keep getting tempted to try charcoal casing but there are too many things to do....

yhs
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Kent Shootwell
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« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2015, 06:36:34 pm »

Mr. Barr, I have an 11 degree throat cutter I could try then a bit of polishing. Would that be inline with your suggestion? And I'll try the lithium grease too.

Professor thanks. This parts were not braced at all and even the lever stayed straight! Blind hog. Did a Sharps at the same time that did get some braces but at 3 grand with engraving I get more cautious!
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Cinco Peso
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« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2015, 01:10:27 pm »

A up date; I shot it after lapping the barrel and found no improvement in the group size or impact point. How ever there is no trace of leading now. I did remove the stain from the grips and did a bit of reshaping then stained and gave them a dull oil finish. Along with removing the proof marks from the frame I did a charcoal color case hardening of it and the loading lever. The cyanide case was very thin so this should hold up better.


How did you do the dull oil finish?
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Kent Shootwell
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« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2015, 08:48:48 am »

Cinco, After reshaping and light sanding I rubbed the Pietta stain down with alcohol then restained with my own color. Once dry I used Tru Oil heavily but before it set up completely I rubbed it off with a rag then rubbed it dry with my hands.
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Johnson Barr
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« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2015, 12:22:23 pm »

Yes Sir, I have an 11 degree forcing cone cutter that I use on all of my cap guns. There is no need to get carried away relieving the throat chamfer. I find that an 1/8" to 3/16" depth is adequate. Something more consistent than Pietta gives you out of the box will prove helpful. My pinky finger and a scrap of 1500 grit wet/dry provides enough polish.   
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Cinco Peso
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« Reply #9 on: August 24, 2015, 08:01:37 pm »

Cinco, After reshaping and light sanding I rubbed the Pietta stain down with alcohol then restained with my own color. Once dry I used Tru Oil heavily but before it set up completely I rubbed it off with a rag then rubbed it dry with my hands.

Thanks, looks great!
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smokin6
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« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2016, 07:46:29 pm »

Looks great
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LonesomePigeon
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« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2016, 01:15:17 am »

Grips and case colors look great.
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Gabriel Law
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« Reply #12 on: March 12, 2016, 04:27:19 pm »



I just bought this pair of Pietta 51 Navies.  Right out of the box they function perfectly.  I agree that the bores are not as nice as Uberti's, but having shot them on only one outing, I'm not displeased with their consistency and accuracy.  Their only issue was the nipples.  We cannot buy #10's here in the Great White North (that I am aware of), so I bought a set of new nipples from TOW that take the #11 CCI caps nicely.  I have yet to shoot them with the new caps, but I didn't have jams even with the loose fitting caps/nipples as supplied.  Once I have wrung them out and found their favourite load, I'll recut the hammer sight to centre the group and possibly add better front sights.  I like my pistols to shoot where I aim them.  Hitting a poker chip with Kentucky windage (and elevation) leaves something to be desired.

But I love the guns.  I bought these from Marstar in Ontario.  Their service is hard to beat.


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smokin6
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« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2016, 08:35:55 pm »

Very nice 1851's
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Gabriel Law
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« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2016, 12:36:06 pm »

In the Henry thread above I tried to explain an issue I have created with these fine revolvers, and will continue it here where it more appropriate.

I replaced all the nipples with TOW's nipples so I can use my CCI #11 caps.  But I discovered that they are .011" short of the factory length, and caps don't go off as a result.  Now I have to decide whether to take metal off the inside of the hammer or the frame to allow the hammer to come forward another .011".

I'll let you know how it goes.
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Coffinmaker
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« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2016, 01:06:54 pm »

GL,
Can you get/order SlixShot nipples on your side of the "de-militarized zone??"  Easiest and simplest thing to do is change to correct length
nipples.

Coffinmaker

Forgot.  Realizing it is a delay of your fun, you should contact TOW and ask for a fix to your nipples.  Modifying your hammers and/or
your frames is NOT the answer.
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Professor Marvel
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« Reply #16 on: May 14, 2016, 12:26:01 am »

If correct tubes are not readily available,
Why not add a brass washers .011 thick under each tube?

yhs
prof marvel
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Gabriel Law
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« Reply #17 on: May 14, 2016, 10:39:58 am »

I appreciate your input guys.  but you are too late.  I used a 1/2" sanding drum on a Dremel tool and ground .011" from the inside curve of the hammer.  They come down perfectly on the nipples now, and fire flawlessly with CCI #11's.  My clue for the fix was the fact that there was a contact mark on the hammers from striking the back of the frame.  Then I measured the factory and replacement nipples to learn the difference.  If anything, the polish I imparted with the sanding drum is smoother than the original finish, though the case colours are gone in that small area.  I'm happy with the fix.
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Gabriel Law
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« Reply #18 on: May 15, 2016, 09:28:31 pm »

I shot the pistols with powder and ball today and they performed flawlessly.  I'm ecstatic.
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Gabriel Law
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« Reply #19 on: May 18, 2016, 04:43:34 pm »

...except for one thing!

It is exceedingly difficult to cap the nipples.  Has anyone found this and what did they do about it?

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Fingers McGee
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« Reply #20 on: May 18, 2016, 06:33:08 pm »

...except for one thing!

It is exceedingly difficult to cap the nipples.  Has anyone found this and what did they do about it?



TDC revolver (snail) capper is the way to go.  I've never had a problem capping replica Colt revolvers with one; although, I've had to do a little filing on the nose to get some to fit properly.
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Gabriel Law
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« Reply #21 on: May 19, 2016, 10:34:43 am »

I agree that the Ted Cash 'snail' capper is the best tool for the job, and all of my other revolvers cap fine with it.  But there Pietta's hang up.  My Uberti 1860 has a recess cut into the shield cut-out to allow you to get the cap in line with the nipple, but the Pietta 1851 does not.  Has anyone thought of relieving the access port just a tad to make it easier to get the caps on?
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Coffinmaker
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« Reply #22 on: May 19, 2016, 10:10:20 pm »

Gabriel,

There is an eons old adage  we who practiced the trade of Gun Plumbing live by.  ALWAYS try to change or modify the CHEAPEST part
first.  The cheapest part you have is the Snail Capper.  Lightly file the nose of the capper and try that first.  Attacking the frame of you
guns with a sharp and abrasive object is the LAST option.  You cannot put the CCH nor the underlying steel back.

Coffinmaker
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Gabriel Law
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« Reply #23 on: May 20, 2016, 10:29:39 am »

I agree with you 100%.  I have previously reduced the metal on the tip of the capper to the minimum.  I have in-line capppers that I've done the same thing too, but they can't get into the nipples either.  I have no issues with a 1849 Colt pocket, a 1860 army or a 1837 Walker Colt, which are all Uberti's...it's the Pietta's that have the issue.  I know that I will lose the CCH in a small area adjacent the nipple capping spot, if I remove metal there.  I was hoping someone had a better idea.  Placing the caps on by hand is even difficult...they have to go on at a bit of an angle first before they will line up and slip onto the tubes.  The good news is that these CCI #11's fit the nipples properly.  The revolver cycles and fires perfectly without losing caps or getting jams.
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Kent Shootwell
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« Reply #24 on: May 20, 2016, 11:47:52 am »

I had the same problem capping and when I recased the frame I also recontured to allow capping. Note the sharper edges on mine compared to Gabriel's engraved ones.
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