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The .36 Navy was used effectively by experts such as Hickock because it had good penetration and the man was insanely accurate with it.
Plus, the use of pure soft lead that seems to deform readily on impact.

Due to burn rates, pressure curves , etc etc There is a velocity limit when using BP, it seems to max out at ~ 900-1000 fps in a handgun
and somewhere between 1800-2000 fps in a rifle.

Thus If one wanted "more" , one needed into increase bullet mass, and that was done by increasing the caliber.
That';s how they ended up with those monster guns, like the 4 Bore African double.
and the .44 and .45 cal pistols.

As our good Coffin has pointed out ( from, gawd help him, actual field experience) what actually works is Big, Slow, Soft, Flatnose bullets.
There was a good reason that the US military went with the .45 ACP: It replicated the ballistics of the  .45 Colt in a 5"  barrel
The  .45 ACP is Big, ~900 fps, only thing missing is soft lead(was not in the spec) and flatnose.

Alloq me to walk our dear readers down the garden path of BP revolvers.... and even if you already know all this crap it's at least entertaining ( to me).

In the Bad Old Days, Colt's Patterson was brought out in a variety of calibers up to .36 . As a repeater it was significant, but the little .28's and .31's
were somewhat anemic, but the .36 was at least effective.

from wikipedia,
snip-------------------------
The Republic of Texas had been the major purchaser of the early Paterson Holster Pistol (No. 5 model), a five shot cal .36 revolver, and Samuel Walker became familiar with it during his service as a Texas Ranger. In 1847, Walker was engaged in the Mexican–American War as a captain in the United States Mounted Rifles. He approached Colt, requesting a large revolver to replace the single-shot Model 1842 Percussion Pistols then in use. The desired .44-.45 caliber revolver would be carried in saddle mounted holsters and would be large enough to dispatch horses as well as enemy soldiers. The Colt Walker was used in the Mexican–American War and on the Texas frontier.[1]

Medical officer John "Rip" Ford took a special interest in the Walkers when they arrived at Veracruz. He obtained two examples for himself and is the primary source for information about their performance during the war and afterward. His observation that the revolver would carry as far and strike with the same or greater force than the .54 caliber Mississippi Rifle seems to have been based on a single observation of a Mexican soldier hit at a distance of well over one hundred yards. The Walker, unlike most succeeding martial pistols and revolvers, was a practical weapon out to about 100 yards.[1]
endsnip-------------

Colt had already gone bankrupt the first time when Walker approached him to build what became the Colt Walker .44 Horse pistol weighing in at 4 1⁄2 pounds.
Thus, Colt contracted with Eli Whitney, Jr. at Whitneyville, Connecticut to manufacture these pistols.

With the soft .454 cal RB on top of 60 gr of "the best sporting powder" the Walker was effective out to 100 yards or more, and readily dropped both men and horses.
It was also supplied with a conical bullet, and it may be that using the concial in the iron cylinders led to the walker cylinders blowing up.

The next step was to reduce the cylinder length to accomodate only 50 gr of powder (to prevent blowups) and add a latch to the lever, resulting in the Colt Dragoon.

Even with the shorter barrel and cylinder the Dragoon weighs in at 4 pounds and a few ounces, so all-day belt carry for normal humans is less than comfortable.
As a result the smaller Colt Navy in .36 was brought out and was a hiugh success - but oddly not as succesful (in numbers bought by civialians) as the .31 cal Baby Dragoon. It was not until Colt was able to procure sufficient quantities of the new so-called "Swedish Spring Steel" , produced by the Bessemer process, that he
was able to create the 1860 .44 cal on the same frame as the .36, but with a rebated cylinder. The Swedish steel was far superior to the previously used
"Marshall Iron" that was imported from England and allowed for a stronger, lighter .44 belt revolver. The 1860  holds 30-35 grains of BP , and with a suitable conical can replicate the .45 ACP. Interestingly, due to the nature of BP combustion, by using cartridges with a firm crimp, one gets better performance.

Later, Remington came out with the .46 rimfire cartridge conversion for their Remington New Model Army ( usually referred to as the Model 1858) and later
some wacky fellers over in europe made even larger bore revolvers. Those zany Brits seemed to want .50 and .60 cal revolvers to take tiger hunting I suppose...

So basically, the pattern was established by trial and error - Bigger is Better, and soft Lead was the King except for Dinosaur hunting when penetration mattered more.

But since we are generally playing cowboy games rather than relying upon our sidearms to defend against Mauraiding Maoriau Attacking Morros or Grizzlies,
it is more a topic for discussion than a serious decision.

hope this helps
prof marvel
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STORM / Re: Maximum BP .38 Spl Loads in Colt 1851 Cartridge Conversions
« Last post by Major 2 on Today at 01:08:36 am »
I dont think the conversions were made to improve performance, i think they were done to make loading and unloading easier using two already available calibers 38 rim and centerfire. As far as maximum performance goes i can get 30gr fff under a round ball in a clean chamberd uberti, in my cimarron conversion i load 20grs fff under a 150gr lrn in 38 long colt brass, and feel its over compressed. If your doing character research for a book or something you might consider the use of 4f powder or loading two balls in every chamber. Better yet look into the remington 46cal rimfire conversions which could fire the carbine cartridge of 40gr under a 300gr bullet.

"....you might consider the use of 4f powder or loading two balls in every chamber "

 :o   DON"T ! 
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STORM / Re: Maximum BP .38 Spl Loads in Colt 1851 Cartridge Conversions
« Last post by Galloway on Today at 12:56:13 am »
I dont think the conversions were made to improve performance, i think they were done to make loading and unloading easier using two already available calibers 38 rim and centerfire. As far as maximum performance goes i can get 30gr fff under a round ball in a clean chamberd uberti, in my cimarron conversion i load 20grs fff under a 150gr lrn in 38 long colt brass, and feel its over compressed. If your doing character research for a book or something you might consider the use of 4f powder or loading two balls in every chamber. Better yet look into the remington 46cal rimfire conversions which could fire the carbine cartridge of 40gr under a 300gr bullet.
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Gunsmithing / Re: Newbie information...
« Last post by Major 2 on Today at 12:55:15 am »
Condolences for your loss , nothing lame about your direction...

Buffalo Bros. makes good grips , I've had them in the past.
 Not specifically John Wayne replica grips,  but others and I've been satisficed with their grips.



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Tall Tales / Re: July won, best spot for coffee , chat ...
« Last post by Delmonico on Yesterday at 10:16:01 pm »
Actually, we have too. Unfortunately, normal for Central Missouri can be none or nearly none for 3-4 weeks in the summer. And then a toad strangler that just all runs off and doesn't soak in.

I guess I should have said the proper amount. ::)

Went adventuring today, Jo Ann's, Hobby Lobby, Grocery Store,  Little Kingsfor a samwhich,  were almost gone and opened some new ones, one close.  Had a Royal Treat, reminded me of my younger days, buddy walking in with a duck decoy and telling them he wanted a Royal Treat and to get the duck a root beer.   

Never mind you would have had to been there and been in and altered state.   ;D
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STORM / Re: Maximum BP .38 Spl Loads in Colt 1851 Cartridge Conversions
« Last post by SPJ on Yesterday at 09:53:42 pm »
Ah So Padawan.

First, some enlightenment.  Gained from First Hand First Person experience.  There is no such thing as a "Man Stopper."  I can attest, it matters not what you hit the adversary with, if you don't do deep penetration with maximum organ damage, your adversary may well kill you while expiring.

Light bullets, going very fast also give up their energy very fast.  Water jugs and ballistic gelatin are fine for "demonstration" purposes but do not really mimic ballistics in a human.  Or animal.  It's theory, nicely demonstrated mostly by people whom have never been in a gun fight.  I have survived several.  I have actually seen 38+P stopped at the first rib.  The perp was real annoyed.  I have seen big slow flat point .45 punch right thru bone and keep right on going thru.

In actuality, following the dismal failure of the 38 (any 38) against the Moro, the U.S. Military went to the 45 ACP.  And in fact shipped a large number of warehoused Colt SAA to the Philippines.  What ever you do, do not base your assumptions on TV.  A 44 Manglem does not throw the victim back out the door.  Just a very heavy "flinch."  The prime idea, is the bigger hole lets' in more air and lets out more blood.

Rest assured, your embarking on a passable fun project.  It's already been done.  There are books on it.  Re-doing the same experiment and expecting a different result is ....................

Hide and Watch

The Moro problem wasn't fixed by adding 3 grains of powder and 8 grains more lead to a .38 Long Colt, it was addressed by going back to the .45 Colt, and eventually the .45 ACP.

And BP doesn't really respond to lighter bullets and very slightly higher powder charges the  way smokeless can. If light bullet and highest possible velocity are the goals, stay with percussion, and load round balls over compressed 777. That should top 1000fps,but with only about an 80gr ball, you're still in .380 auto performance range.

Okay "Man stopper" was a poor choice of words. Maybe I should be more specific and say more lethal, or potentially lethal. Can you suggest any sources I should look at? I will look at Professer Marvel's links more too.

If bullet mass really matters more than powder charge when it comes to BP loads then maybe to meet my ideal goal I really will have to go as far as removing mass from the revolver frame or barrel to fit a custom longer cylinder. Thats what it looks like is done with other factory conversions and with the older Kenny Howell Conversions (https://www.riverjunction.com/5153). Or use specialty bullets like a solid lead hollow point. Oh well, not the easier solution I was hoping for but if that's what it takes then at least I have an answer. Thank you
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The Barracks / Re: Peru in the era of expansion
« Last post by Drydock on Yesterday at 09:51:58 pm »
Just a minute, got out my "Remington Rolling Block Military Rifles of the World"  Peru's standard arm for its (Very Small) army at the time was indeed the Martini -Peabody rifle.  Sold as overruns from Peabodys unpaid Ottoman contracts.  During the war they bought 14000 .43 Spanish rolling blocks direct from Remington.  The Peabodys and Rolling blocks would arm Peru until they bought M1891 Mausers from Argentina in the early 1890's.
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The Barracks / Re: Peru in the era of expansion
« Last post by pony express on Yesterday at 09:47:03 pm »
Shouldn't be too hard to come up with. Red trousers and a modified USCW Frock coat. The one in the middle has more of a sack coat, with standing collar and seven buttons. White summer uniforms look like a CW Shell jacket, but done in white canvas. But the hard part to get right from these kind of pictures is the collar and cuff details. Looks like a lot of French influence in their uniforms, but the only rifle identifiable is a Martini. I would have expected Rolling blocks, in that time period, since most every S.A. country seemed to use them at one time or another.
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The Barracks / Re: RIP Buck Berberich
« Last post by 38OVI on Yesterday at 08:37:04 pm »
I  have a pair of leggings for Span-Am war he made for me.
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