Author Topic: barrel/cylinder gap fix?  (Read 3390 times)

Offline riflee

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #25 on: December 29, 2018, 11:12:46 am »
I just can't stop this gobbled gook about this subject. :'(

I just get to thunkin and have to type.

I got to thinking too....about times when I'd have an old cap&baller with a cylinder with a overly sized center hole and thus be way way off "range" with the alignment of the chambers to the bore. Really too far off to work with the bolt to fix it. I've gone to what I call extremes with modifying bolts to get good chamber to bore alignment but sometimes even the extreme can't fix it. I'm not going to go off track and get into  what the extreme fix's are with the bolt. Just settin this up to say some times the bolt isn't the place to go to set the cylinder alignment right.


Getting smacked on top the head by ole 45dragoon mentioning set screws to help position a cylinder and even a barrel ,"taking the slop out", reminded me of times gone by whereas I'd want to take a piece of junk  cap&baller Colt and make it a shooter.

Worst case scenario time I'd get some weld on an arbor to position a cylinder to aligne with the bore.  Spots of weld to raise or lower the cylinder or move the cylinder right or left to get aligned.  Get the spots of weld on the arbor and then file them rounded and see what it did then and maybe get more spots of weld and move and stabilize the cylinder. Tedious.

I've used the spots of weld inside the beginning of the barrel arbor hole to get slop out of it that had to be done to get the alignment of the chambers to the bore proper. You know.....why re-position a cylinder and still have a sloopy fit of the barrel? Know what I mean?

Done the little weld to the top inside of the barrel arbor hole to get slop out too. It's easier actually then using a piece of shim stock like I've done at times gone by  with my own guns.


Anywhooooo.....it just stands to reason ,going a little further, when a cylinder is way too far off to align it to the bore with the bolt a person could (if they want to get drastic) enlarge the cylinders center hole a little and then use weld spots on the arbor to get a good alignment of the cylinder to the bore and have the cylinder stable too.  Or........


A person can get wild and crazy when a barrel is so far off alignment  the ball can hit the end of the barrel on one side and take a good chunk of lead off the ball when fired.

 I've taken my forcing cone reamer and left the pilot off and relieve the breech end of the barrel to one side or the other by reaming way over to the side in question and let the ball get in the forcing cone without hitting the end of the barrel.  Never would that work with a bullet but the ball being a ball  ;D     it can get into the forcing cone and be "funneled" right into the center of the bore.  The Colt (or other types)  would shoot fairly well then.


Before someone jumps all over my post (it does seem sorta drastic) I can give an example. 

A Centaure Centennial 1860 Army barrel was way way off. So high in relation to the cylinder and the hammer that it wasn't possible to get the front sight aligned with the rear sight.  The bore was just too high in relation to the arbor. Big big defect.
 When trying to align the front sight to the rear sight the barrel would be all you could see. When I first saw the gun I wondered why someone had done a lot of filing to the top of the barrel back near the breech end. Even that filing didn't fix the problem.


The arbor hole in the barrel was in the right place but......the barrel bore was just way to high above the arbor. Never have I seen anything that far off again.  The ball would be able to hit the bottom of the end of the barrel. 


That's when I used the forcing cone reamer without the pilot to do a lot of relief there at the bottom of the forcing cone. The ball would then be funneled to the center of the bore to shoot well.   Used an 11* forcing cone reamer.  Lengthened and relieved the forcing cone at the bottom.

Anyway......the gun needed a short trigger too so the hammer rear sight could find the front sight.  When the owner of the gun got it back and test fired it the barrel fell right off. :o   Just kidding.

The gun shot well and to the point of aim so the shooter hit some sort of small target all six times at something like 25 paces.  It's a miracle...... it's a miracle.  ::)  I did a few other things too the gun too …….like install a Pietta hammer, modify the bolt and other things.


I'm going to quit typing. Being on drugs and all (pain pills) I get wozzy.


One of these days I'm going to tell some weird goobled gook (I like that term) about drastic bolt modification to get some alignment of the chambers to the bore.  It might drive real Gunsmiths crazy reading it. ;D ;D ;D ;D   I can't help it...I'm just a kitchen Table Gunsmith.

Well I do work in the garage and even have a shop room there now so I can heat the room in the winter. That doesn't mean I'm not still a Kitchen Table Gunsmith.  I was born with a screwdriver in my little hand. The doctors thought I had three legs. I was so ugly the nurses thought I was a cute little pug puppy.  My mother thought I had to have been adopted.  My Dad ran away screaming.

Just kiddin. I have respect fer all you Hombre or Hombrets.  Anyone that shoots or fixes on Colt Open Top revolvers is alright with me. ;)


I'm happy today because I got four new chucking reamers from MSC machinist tool place.  Order one day and......you get your stuff the next day.  I'm going to try a reaming of some chambers to get a good relationship between them and the grooves in a Colt "51" Navy barrel. Th cylinder chambers are .366's   and the barrel grooves are .382's.  That's .016's way off.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2019, 10:54:57 am by riflee »

Offline Navy Six

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #26 on: December 29, 2018, 11:45:29 am »
I'm happy today because I got four new chucking reamers from MSC machinist tool place.  Order one day and......you get your stuff the next day.  I'm going to try a reaming of some chambers to get a good relationship between them and the grooves in a Colt "51" Navy barrel. Th cylinder chambers are .366's   and the barrel grooves are .382's.  That's .016's way off.

Riflee, hope you can report your results with the chucking reamers. By that I mean the actual reaming process and the shooting results. Asking a lot, I know, but it would sure be of interest.




« Last Edit: December 29, 2018, 11:50:51 am by Navy Six »
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Online 45 Dragoon

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #27 on: December 29, 2018, 12:15:06 pm »
Hey riflee,
  Sorry to mess up your dream "patterns" !!
  Ill try and post a couple of pics here to show the set screw correcting the cyl play. That was about 5 yrs ago and it still has a "no felt play" tolerance.

Well its a no go with the pics. So, what you do is drill through the arbor where you want the "bump" or bearing and of course  tap it. Round the nose of the set screw and install.  For my need on the '60, it was right at the front of the cylinder. It needed to lift the front  ever so slightly to clear up the slop and align the bore with the chamber. It works perfectly  and of course you access the hex head from  the underside (so the bearing is a solid surface,  not part of the hex end of the screw). My '60 is from the late 90's so the arbor length had to be corrected as well. It utilizes a shim stack but is holding up rather well. Barrel/cyl clearance is .0015" and its a smokeless  .45C shooter only. I did change out the Army grip for a nice looking Navy grip.  Quite a powerhouse with the 8" barrel!!

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com
Follow me on Instagram @goonsgunworks

Offline riflee

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #28 on: December 29, 2018, 08:03:00 pm »
45dragoon,thanks fer giving some more details about the set screw set up. I'd have to admit it doesn't seem like a bad idea especially if the set screw is real small so the hole thru the arbor is small. I'd imagine that is how it is....small hole. I'm going to put that trick in my book of tricks.


There's a hold up on the reaming of those chambers. I used a reamer I have had awhile and used my "center up on an existing hole tool I had Starrett make for me and did the centering by moving the mill table till the tool showed I was exactly on center. Installed the reamer that was .373 going into a .366 chamber hole and reamed that chamber like the tool was going down into soft butter.


Since I was aiming for .382 to match the barrel grooves(maybe .383 since I already had that reamer). I installed the .382 reamer since it was the next size reamer I had on hand and went to reaming.   The reamer was turned down on the chamber and instead of that nice sound of the tool doing it's job there was a screeching sound and the sound of chattering. I quit.    Then softly tried again thunkin it might settle down. Nope same screeching and chatter.


So I got some new reamers thunkin I may be taking too big of a bite. Tried one today going from the .373 hole to .3765 reamer. Same screeching and chatter. 


I don't know what the problem is since I've done multiple chamber reaming jobs and never had a problem. Only thing I can thunk is the cylinder is very very hard.   This problem is beyond me fer the time being. I might get two or three solid carbide reamers to try.


The cylinder I have fer this gun is a Uberti with Pietta nipples in it. Some one must have re-tapped the threads to the bigger Pietta size. 6mmX.75's.  I got the cylinder for a cut-rate price from one of the parts supply places. Never got a cylinder too hard to ream with a chucking reamer. Belgian Centaure Centennial 1860 Army's have harder cylinders and I've reamed them with no problem.


Anywhoooo...never had this weird thing happen before.    I've done reaming multiple times and the accuracy is always improved. I haven't reamed cartridge gun chambers. I could if need be but never had the need. 


I like going .002-.003's over the barrel groove diameter. When I did the first Walker there was a noticeably different sound to it. I think it had .466 grooves. Hard to remember so long ago. I know it uses .472 round balls.  ACCURATE!  When shot the sound was a sound like it held more pressure and it seemed to hit harder and shoot flatter at longer distances. It really did get more accurate I guess since it wasn't blowing pressure past the ball that must not have been expanding  much.

Thanks for setting me straight on how you use those set screws. I was initially thinking of a set screw in a shallow hole instead of a clean thru hole. That's a good trick!
« Last Edit: December 31, 2018, 08:56:14 am by riflee »

Offline riflee

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #29 on: January 01, 2019, 01:27:28 pm »
I'll type a little about the reaming process and the accompanying accuracy results.

I have a milling machine fer starters. I got it initially to cut perfect dovetails into muzzleloader barrels when I was making half stock black powder traditional rifles.


Along the way I'd notice that cleaning my Colts cap&ballers that I could see with a pen light down the barrel and tell the chambers were smaller than the barrel grooves. Reading gun magazines at work all the time (  :-X ::)  I had a job whereas I could and did read read read) The thing was "revolvers" back then. Cartridge guns mostly. The adage was that with lead bullets too loose it made leading and too tight made leading in the barrels. The thing was....lead bullets needed .000,-.001's-.003's inch over size fer the grooves in the barrels.


When I looked down the barrels of my cap&ballers ,shooting lead balls or conicals, I would see silver from the light bouncing off the face of the cylinder even if the cylinder was black. You know...… seeing the silver around the chamber hole told me the chambers were smaller than the grooves in the barrels. If the chamber was aligned well the silver was around the entire chamber. If the chamber was out of alignment I'd see like a sliver of silver on one side or the other of the chamber looking down the barrel.  When I'd advise folks about that I'd term it as the ,"silver moon of misalignment" . 


Anywhooooo….I lived with the smaller chambers for years thunkin that must be the way it should be. I new better the whole time but didn't want to mess with my chambers , but it did bother me.


One day I had a milling machine delivered and got a mess of bottom cutting end mills and some dovetail cutters. I was cleaning my 1851 Navy in my shop and......looked at that danged cylinder and thought, " I'll make you freakin right or die doing it or ruin yer ass and throw you in the corn field". 


I got out a .375 in. end mill and stuck it in it's collet(the things the end mills go into) and draw it up in the machine with the top bolt. All set with a new end mill drawn up in the new milling machine and then thunked about how to center the end mill to the chamber to enlarge it.  The chamber was padded and already put in the machinist vise nice and straight.

That meant taking the collet with the end mill out and installing the drill chuck with something to help align the danged chamer thing.


I made a pointer then from drill stock that was the exact size of the existing chamber and stuck in in the drill chuck and used it to align the pointer to the chamber. Move the table around till the pointer went in the chamber without resistance. Then I knew the collet with the end mill put back in was aligned properly.


Then I just aligned each chamber with the pointer and then re-installed the end mill ( since that would be .003" larger than the groove diameter in the barrel) . By the way...….I slugged the barrel with a lead ball and obturated it and drove it out of the barrel and.....then learned how to measure a seven groove barrel rifling with a caliper to get the exact diameter of the groove to groove in the barrel.  The danged barrel grooves were something like .385"s and the chambers were about .372"s.   As far as I remember.


Re-install the end mill after aligning the chamber and mill the chamber hole to the size I wanted. Do all six of them naturally. ::)


Then I had nice smooth chambers all silver and shining and now....the right danged size for the barrel groove diameter. It was cool.


Before the proper sizing of the chambers my Navy shot well when it felt like it and not well when it felt like it.  Drove me up a wall. I'm surprised I didn't go explore that trauma in therapy.


Anywhoooo….after the chambers getting to be the new size at .003" larger than groove diameter that Navy became my sweetest prized possession AND my most accurate cap&baller.


I had a phone Pal fer a little while. He was known as the best gunsmith with Remington cap&ballers for the competition shooters there was. "Ball Accuracy" was the shop name.  We'd talk shop at length at times and being the decent Hombre he was he listened to my method of enlarging chambers and gave me his method. He advised me about chucking reamers since I guess he was a machinist of some sort.  Chucking reamers that could be had in increments of .001's inch. 



That's all she wrote. It was chucking reamers for me ever since because I could get so many different sizes.

I finally had Starrett take an edge finder they sell and enlarge the cone on one end so it was a half inch to start and shaped small to the end. I have a blue print of the tool. Anywhooooo the cone end goes into the chamber snug with the cylinder in the vise and I move the table around till the edge finder modified tool tells me it's perfectly aligned with the chamber so the chucking reamer put in is perfectly aligned also. Cost me over $400.

The edge finders have three parts all the exact diameter with a spring inside holding them together. The longest part in the middle and the shorter flat ended part on one end of the body and the cone shape on the other. I put the tool in a half inch collet since the tool is a precise half inch diameter exactly. (the flat ended part on the body of the tool goes into the collet and does nothing).  Then the collet with the tool cone end down goes in the spindle of the milling machine to line things up.

When I move the table around and the precision parts of the tool line up perfectly then the spindle where the chucking reamer is in it's collet it is perfectly lined up with the chamber.  Edge finders can come making a click when the edge is found or light up when the edge is found or when the tool parts all align perfectly. I don't find edges with it but find the center of an existing hole as in chamber.  My tool has no clicks or bells or lights or anything. I use my finger nail feeling for little edges between the tool parts till I feel no edge anywhere. That means the tool parts are aligned perfectly so the tool is at the exact center of the hole.

I began to promote the idea that chambers close or even a little over the size of the barrels groove diameter would give pretty danged good consistent accuracy in cap&baller revolvers.  I tested it a good deal in my own cap&ballers so I knew it was a good deal.


I have to say.....if the ball or bullet made of lead is .001"-.003"s over the barrels groove diameter, in my humble opinion, it will shoot better than if the chamber is smaller than the barrels groove diameter.  The .003"s inch over groove diameter is pushing it some.



I had a Paterson Uberti revolver with something like .385"s barrel grooves and chambers at something like .372.  It just would not shoot well. I reamed the chambers to something like .386"s and it transformed that danged thing fer the better.  Real transformation to a real accurate Paterson. Pop cans with holes in them at 40 yards and such with that gun. Of course I use a .395 ball in it.  That technically makes it a 40cal. right? :o 


I'd have to mention that I seldom reamed the chambers all the way to the bottom of the chambers. I'd ream down into the chamber about as far as the ball would ever have to go into the chamber on the powder.  Never ever went too thin under where the cylinder notches are.  Always stay above those in the chamber.


Anywhoooo...people would relate to me that they didn't have a milling machine or the moola to pay a gunsmith to ream chambers. They would tell me they got those adjustable hand reamers to do the reaming. Some people used drill bits on their drill press.


Anywhoooo….the reaming always worked fer me but......it's merely an opinion of a "Bonified Kitchen Table Gunsmith" and not written in stone by Moses or some Belgian advanced gunsmith.

Of course there's Uberti guns like the Pocket Police that comes with  36cal. chambers the same size as the barrel grooves. The distressed finish Pietta Army Colts have matching chambers and barrel grooves according to the Dixie Cataloge I think. The Italian Pedersoli target revolvers like the Rodgers and Spencer and the Remington 1858 revolvers have matching chambers and barrel grooves pretty close. My Pietta target type Remington has matching , .456's barrel grooves and chambers.

The Pietta Navy and Army with the patina finish in 44cal. have rifling .003's deep and chambers .446 and grooves at .446's.  The shallow grooved rifling seems to be reserved for the target guns like the Pedersoli and the Pietta Deluxe Remington and the Patinia and others.  A Pedersoli Remington costs a few dollars more than other standard ones.

When gunsmiths put Badger barrels on Remingtons they had matching chambers and barrel grooves if I'm not mistaken.


Anywhooooo....I used my dial indicater gauge to gauge the straightness of the chucking reamers in the 5/16ths collet stuck into the machines spindle. It showed the chucking reamers were something like .006's inch out of true.    Since all the reamers new and old didt he same thing with the 5/16ths collet and not the 3/8ths collet that showed no movement of the arrow on the dial gauge at all I asertained that.....the danged (*&$%^#__)$%^ 5/16th's collet is bad.

That I figure at this point is why the" first reamer" I used to do the cylinder I have in the machine that was 3/8's collet worked like it should and then going to the 5/16th's collet fer the 5/16's shank reamers would not do the job. Freakin bad collet. I can look at that collet and not see anything wrong with it. Collets are thick and strong and pretty much life time users. A bad one seems not possible but......in my world weird things are always happening. Lady Luck with her fickle finger of fate shoves it "in the wrong place" with me all the time. :'( :'(
  If anyone reads this.....hope it doesn't drive ya nuts. ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D

Offline cheatin charlie

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #30 on: January 01, 2019, 01:56:46 pm »
Riflee,  why didn't you just use a last word indicator to indicate the cylinder bores in.  Save you $400.  That is what I did.  ;)
 
Charlie

Offline riflee

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #31 on: January 01, 2019, 06:57:14 pm »
Howdy Charlie!


Don't understand what yer sayin. I use a dial indicator to measure the chambers. I don't know what a last word indicator is. I wouldn't mind saving $400 dollars somehow though.


I did spend $200 plus on some new assorted chucking reamers.  Now since I figger I figgered it out I just need a new 5/16ths R8 collet. That will be $35 plus.


I wanted more assorted size chucking reamers to take care of a mounting need for more 36cal. types.


Charlie.......I appreciate you reading what you did and giving some feedback. That's how I get my fix of therapeutic feedback and maybe learn something new by Folks reading the stories I try to write.  I like to thunk I may be of some help, at least a little, to someone out there in the cyber world.

Maybe the day after tommorow I can get the new collet and do the reaming in peace so I can go to the next step of nitre bluing the barrel and cylinder then......get to casehardening the hammer and trigger I messed with and then......install a dovetail front sight and hope to remember to grind down the hammer rear sight some before I harden it.

 I'm conteplating whether to polish the brass frame or.....do an organic  aging of the frame that turns it a nice brown. That nice brown takes awhile so I'd shoot the gun a little first to sight it in point of aim/point of impact.


Hound Dog's a howling again so gotta go!



PS     I looked at yer post and it struck me that you're talking about centering the chambers to the spindle of the mill with my Starrett centering tool that cost $400 plus. 

 I don't know how to indicate to find the exact center of an existing hole with a last word indicator.
 I asked several pro machinists on a web site a long time ago and none could tell be how to center on an existing hole. Find the center of a round piece yes ......but that is like finding the center of an anti-hole.

Finding the center of a round piece has some formula of a way to do it. I fergit what's it's called.   The center finder I had made up works well it seems unless I'm delusional again from eatin too much Christmas candy without taking my fiber and laxatives regularly.   Anywhoooo…..I mentioned how some Folks just use an expandable hand reamer to ream chambers. Never tried it but it does seem like less trouble unless it wears a person arm out.
« Last Edit: January 01, 2019, 07:19:00 pm by riflee »

Offline cheatin charlie

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #32 on: January 01, 2019, 08:51:39 pm »
This tells how to do it.  I cannot believe a machinist with any experience would not know how to do this.
 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VY2crpjhL3E

Offline willy

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #33 on: January 01, 2019, 09:49:25 pm »
I did this ,,I use the "kiss " method  (Keep It Simple Stupid)whenever possible,,,I posted this awhile back  for an "easy fix for short arbors"
https://muzzleloadingforum.com/threads/easy-fix-for-short-arbor.108479/

It is easy and makes for a perfect cylinder gap every time . 
« Last Edit: January 01, 2019, 10:00:23 pm by willy »

Offline riflee

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #34 on: January 02, 2019, 07:57:25 am »
Thanks Folks for the replies. Gotta run but I'll be checking things out when I get back from town.

I do the reaming thing with the cylinder chambers the way I do because I can trust it to be precision and accurate. I'm not a machinist by trade. I had no help and figgered it all out the best way I knew. Of course I had a little help from Ball Accuracy (Mr. Ball) way way back.  I've reamed a lot of danged chambers since then fer some Folks.
 NavySix asked fer some explanation bout this so I did the best I could to explain some of this.    Most would go the simple easy route and use an adjustable hand reamer and a good caliper I'd expect.

Gotta run!  Thanks Hombre's ! Later.

Offline greyhawk

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #35 on: January 02, 2019, 03:28:52 pm »
Thanks Folks for the replies. Gotta run but I'll be checking things out when I get back from town.

I do the reaming thing with the cylinder chambers the way I do because I can trust it to be precision and accurate. I'm not a machinist by trade. I had no help and figgered it all out the best way I knew. Of course I had a little help from Ball Accuracy (Mr. Ball) way way back.  I've reamed a lot of danged chambers since then fer some Folks.
 NavySix asked fer some explanation bout this so I did the best I could to explain some of this.    Most would go the simple easy route and use an adjustable hand reamer and a good caliper I'd expect.

Gotta run!  Thanks Hombre's ! Later.

I reamed two cylinders with a reamer I made out of a HT bolt (use a grade three or five carbon steel - with the three bars on the bolthead - not the grade 8 alloy steel - the grade 8 is too difficult to harden for a homebody) - went to .462 cylinder and we use a 464 ball from a pedersoli mold - turned the reamer by hand - easy job and both guns shoot good with full charges - it all seemed like easy at the time - only ream to the depth needed to seat a ball though - an 1860 army cylinder reamed that big is kinda skinny at the front.

Offline Navy Six

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #36 on: January 02, 2019, 03:47:05 pm »
Riflee, I now feel kinda guilty asking you to describe your reaming process. That was a lot of typing work! I want to thank you and let you know it is appreciated! Hope you keep sharing your years(decades  ;)!!) of experience with these percussion pistols. :)
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Offline riflee

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #37 on: January 02, 2019, 07:28:27 pm »
 Thanks fer the help Folks. Yer an Honorable bunch.

 FINALLY I've watched the video of an instructor showing me how a special indicator can be used to find the proverbial center of an existing hole.  I appreciate the instruction and Cheatin Charlie taking the effort to post that.


I appreciate Navy Six giving some acknowledgement and reinforcement. Makes my two typing fingers wanting to just take off runnin across this danged key board. :)

Now...when it comes to that danged "greybeard" I am now with a web of confusion around my head instead of my NRA hat. Oh! sure I certainly appreciate  his reply but......now I have to know how the mechanical genius made a reamer from a hardened bolt. ??? ???


One thing confuses me is why a .462 chamber and why a .464 round ball? ???

I have a .472 mold I had Lee Precision make fer me for $100 plus dollars and...when I wanted more it was another $100 up front for set up fee. AND another $100 fer the tungsten ball they made fer doing the sizing of the mold.  They would not let me have the tungsten ball either. I want .472 balls and moulds fer my supper accurate Walker and other Walkers I may fix up some day.  I like anywhere from .006 to .010's over the chamber size round balls.  Anyway if I want more .472 ball moulds it's $100 up front for set up fee every time. The second time I wanted more .472 moulds they wanted to charge me again fer making the tungsten ball. I told them they made my ball already and it was to be reserved fer my so they let that $100 slide. I guess I still have a .472 tungsten ball there at Lee Precision.

I'm glad to know Pedersoli makes a mold that .464 size since I use that size with one mold I got from good ole RAPINE that is gone now.  I may want other .464 moulds to go with other guns.  You know odd size moulds to go with the certain guns with .458 chambers.

I have two Dragoons that use that size ball and I want to have a mould for each gun so....someday when I leave the guns behind whoever has the guns will have a mould fer the guns.


I'd worry bout a ball only .002's bigger then the chamber that greybeard mentioned. They may move forward from recoil. Maybe it's a target type that uses small powder charges or CASS shooting with less recoil????


I have to thank Willy fer turning Folks on to the epoxy method he posted on the muzzleloading site with the excess epoxy going out the drilled hole and all and using the straw and all.
My wife read that about sucking the Accraglas up the straw and started laughing like hell. I had to tell her it wasn't Acraglas "GEL" but regular ole Acraglas that is not real thick. Then she said, "oh!'.  Then I started laughing at her.  :D I told her I doubt if anyone could suck Accraglas Gel up a straw. She only knows of Acraglas Gel and not regular Acraglas.

I wonder what a Last Word Indicator would cost?  When I saw the video of the machinist finding thecenter of an existing hole it struck me that..........

Besides the difference between a Last Word indicator and the indicator I thunked up that Starret made fer me the process I use is almost identical to the machinists method in the video.  When he mentioned that if the hole wasn't perfectly round he could get funny readings on the indicator that made me thunk  (there I go thunkin again ::) )   


The cone on my indicator going into a hole that is slightly out of round and would follow the  most round part of the hole and not give funny readings but center the best possible into a out of round hole. Gotta thunk on that a little to see what I mean.

 Anywhooo......my indicator is real precision and it works by looking at it and feeling it for edges that are feel-able. When there's no noticeable edge fer my finger nail to find and the two pieces of the tool shaft and cone part are perfectly aligned I'm at the center of the hole. Align by moving the mill table of course. You know...the cone part is movable on the bottom of the shank of the tool with the shank in the collet in the spindle. When the cone perfectly lines up with the shank   (the tool diameter and the two pieces showing below the collet are really smooth and when they line up I can hardly see where they come together)    I'm on exact center. ;D
  Anywhoooo.....believe it or not the chambers of the cylinders on the cap&ballers are sometimes not perfectly round or........not perfectly round down inside either. If I ream a chamber and the inside is nice and shiny but......there can be a black spot here and there that means something. That means there can be slightly more wide spots inside the chamber.  That means it can be possible to get chain fire from the front of a chamber if there is no seal like a lube pill or lubed wool wad under the ball or gloppy grease over the out side of the chamber.   
  This has been a good run fer posts and replies and all. Interesting.
Now I'd like to have a "last word indicator".   That could work for little holes like chambers in cylinders of Cap&Baller Revolvers I'd say.


If a person has a good quality drill press and got a little mill table fer it (they can be had from somewhere like Smithy or Blue Ridge)  they could center on a chamber by making a "pointer" from a rod so it was a real close fit in a chamber and use it to centeron a hole like I did way way back. When the precise pointer rod that is in the drill chuck and it goes in the chamber without binding (slips in easy) then the drill chuck would be pretty well centered to use a reamer or maybe a drill to get a certain size to the chamber.  You know make the chamber a tiny bit more diameter about as far as the ball would ever have to go down to to get a good ball size fer the barrel grooves.  One thing....never get too wild with making chambers more wide. Never more than a very small amount more wide.  If you want to be on the absolute side of safe leave the chambers as they are when you get the gun.

« Last Edit: January 02, 2019, 07:37:44 pm by riflee »

Offline greyhawk

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #38 on: January 03, 2019, 12:10:40 am »
Thanks fer the help Folks. Yer an Honorable bunch.

 FINALLY I've watched the video of an instructor showing me how a special indicator can be used to find the proverbial center of an existing hole.  I appreciate the instruction and Cheatin Charlie taking the effort to post that.


I appreciate Navy Six giving some acknowledgement and reinforcement. Makes my two typing fingers wanting to just take off runnin across this danged key board. :)

Now...when it comes to that danged "greybeard" I am now with a web of confusion around my head instead of my NRA hat. Oh! sure I certainly appreciate  his reply but......now I have to know how the mechanical genius made a reamer from a hardened bolt. ??? ???

coulda just been blind luck?
took me a 1/2 inch HT bolt - ya want about three inches of solid shank plus the thread - chop the head off, hold it with about an inch out from the chuck - center it, turn the inch true - now hold it by the trued section and centre the thread end then turn the thread off for a shank - now reverse again and hold the shank and with a centre support - turn the barrel neat and pretty one thou over your reamer size then turn a short pilot section - polish the whole thing like a mirror - take it to the mill and cut four flutes - do not need a dividing head to space the flutes evenly!! works better if they are a bit agricultural in the setup - less likely to chatter - I made a first cut for the flutes from the front then took a second cut from behind to relieve the flutes - you want about half a MM of the original diameter left - then go sharpen those flutes - file, diamond stone, whatever

hardened it in the drill press quenched in oil and NOT tempered - my second attempt with an alloy steel grade 8 bolt was a complete utter failure.   



One thing confuses me is why a .462 chamber and why a .464 round ball? ???

Barrel was deep rifled and .462 to the bottom of the grooves - .464 ball was the onliest mold we could get at the time - 2 thou oversize ball is only just enough - but in a walker with 55 grain load its ok

I have a .472 mold I had Lee Precision make fer me for $100 plus dollars and...when I wanted more it was another $100 up front for set up fee. AND another $100 fer the tungsten ball they made fer doing the sizing of the mold.  They would not let me have the tungsten ball either. I want .472 balls and moulds fer my supper accurate Walker and other Walkers I may fix up some day.  I like anywhere from .006 to .010's over the chamber size round balls.  Anyway if I want more .472 ball moulds it's $100 up front for set up fee every time. The second time I wanted more .472 moulds they wanted to charge me again fer making the tungsten ball. I told them they made my ball already and it was to be reserved fer my so they let that $100 slide. I guess I still have a .472 tungsten ball there at Lee Precision.

472 ball ???? anymore n about 4thou means serious leaning on the load lever

I'm glad to know Pedersoli makes a mold that .464 size since I use that size with one mold I got from good ole RAPINE that is gone now.  I may want other .464 moulds to go with other guns.  You know odd size moulds to go with the certain guns with .458 chambers.

I have two Dragoons that use that size ball and I want to have a mould for each gun so....someday when I leave the guns behind whoever has the guns will have a mould fer the guns.


I'd worry bout a ball only .002's bigger then the chamber that greybeard mentioned. They may move forward from recoil. Maybe it's a target type that uses small powder charges or CASS shooting with less recoil????


I have to thank Willy fer turning Folks on to the epoxy method he posted on the muzzleloading site with the excess epoxy going out the drilled hole and all and using the straw and all.
My wife read that about sucking the Accraglas up the straw and started laughing like hell. I had to tell her it wasn't Acraglas "GEL" but regular ole Acraglas that is not real thick. Then she said, "oh!'.  Then I started laughing at her.  :D I told her I doubt if anyone could suck Accraglas Gel up a straw. She only knows of Acraglas Gel and not regular Acraglas.

I wonder what a Last Word Indicator would cost?  When I saw the video of the machinist finding thecenter of an existing hole it struck me that..........

Besides the difference between a Last Word indicator and the indicator I thunked up that Starret made fer me the process I use is almost identical to the machinists method in the video.  When he mentioned that if the hole wasn't perfectly round he could get funny readings on the indicator that made me thunk  (there I go thunkin again ::) )   


The cone on my indicator going into a hole that is slightly out of round and would follow the  most round part of the hole and not give funny readings but center the best possible into a out of round hole. Gotta thunk on that a little to see what I mean.

 Anywhooo......my indicator is real precision and it works by looking at it and feeling it for edges that are feel-able. When there's no noticeable edge fer my finger nail to find and the two pieces of the tool shaft and cone part are perfectly aligned I'm at the center of the hole. Align by moving the mill table of course. You know...the cone part is movable on the bottom of the shank of the tool with the shank in the collet in the spindle. When the cone perfectly lines up with the shank   (the tool diameter and the two pieces showing below the collet are really smooth and when they line up I can hardly see where they come together)    I'm on exact center. ;D
  Anywhoooo.....believe it or not the chambers of the cylinders on the cap&ballers are sometimes not perfectly round or........not perfectly round down inside either. If I ream a chamber and the inside is nice and shiny but......there can be a black spot here and there that means something. That means there can be slightly more wide spots inside the chamber.  That means it can be possible to get chain fire from the front of a chamber if there is no seal like a lube pill or lubed wool wad under the ball or gloppy grease over the out side of the chamber.   
  This has been a good run fer posts and replies and all. Interesting.
Now I'd like to have a "last word indicator".   That could work for little holes like chambers in cylinders of Cap&Baller Revolvers I'd say.

cant aford a last word indicator (whatever that is) I just make a neat fit rod on the lathe for each job - dont take long really

If a person has a good quality drill press and got a little mill table fer it (they can be had from somewhere like Smithy or Blue Ridge)  they could center on a chamber by making a "pointer" from a rod so it was a real close fit in a chamber and use it to centeron a hole like I did way way back. When the precise pointer rod that is in the drill chuck and it goes in the chamber without binding (slips in easy) then the drill chuck would be pretty well centered to use a reamer or maybe a drill to get a certain size to the chamber.  You know make the chamber a tiny bit more diameter about as far as the ball would ever have to go down to to get a good ball size fer the barrel grooves.  One thing....never get too wild with making chambers more wide. Never more than a very small amount more wide.  If you want to be on the absolute side of safe leave the chambers as they are when you get the gun.



Offline riflee

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #39 on: January 04, 2019, 11:28:21 am »
Hey greyhawk!

I just realized I've been referring to you as greybeard.  Sorry. I'll try to keep it straight.

You know....making a well fit rod to go into a cylinder chamber to align it to the spindle is where I initially started way back when. It works.  I'd use the rod to line up so an endmill the right size could enlarge the chamber a few ,001's.  I got tired of making perfectly fit rods. I could have just went to and stayed with 1/2 inch rod with a cone put to the end. I worried that it may be a little off center since I had no lathe to do it fer sure. I took some rod to a machine shop to put a rounded cone to the end that was concentric with the center line of the rod.

I've found that a rod that is , say , half inch in diameter that has a cone shape on it's end can help so a lot of certain size rods aren't needed. The cone going in the chamber hole will show by sight with good lighting when it makes the chamber aligned.  You can just look at it closely and see when the table of the mill is moved so the cone is in contact with the entire rim of the chamber. When it is the rod is lined up so the spindle of the machine is lined up. Know what I mean? 


Anywhoooo….I got my new collet and it works real well. I had to slow down the machine though since some of the problem was the collet got defective and the machine was running too fast fer the reamer.

I could ad something here. I mill the barrel lugs to set barrels back to fix big cylinder gaps. The Army Colt I mill the whole end of the lug and with the Navy just make a little step that sets the barrel back only where it is even with the frame end. Almost invisible without looking close.  Then make a new wedge of course.
« Last Edit: January 11, 2019, 03:40:05 pm by riflee »

Offline Crow Choker

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #40 on: January 11, 2019, 04:38:50 pm »
Hey Riflee'---glad yer back on the forum. Always enjoy and look forward to your posts and information. Have been gonna call ya for a while and see how you've been. Has been quite a few full moons since I talked with ya. Reference Colt arbor fixin--I bought a dozen of the Dillion brass check buttons that Pettifogger recommended for adjusting Colt arbors. So far haven't used them. Tried the split washers, didn't like them-to much spring, didn't really trust them to give a true fix. I bought three thicknesses of thin brass washers of the same diameter as the arbor and by trial found what combination best trued things up. Put a little grease on them and stick em on the arbor end and put thing back together, just have to take notice when I take barrel off. They mostly stick in the barrel arbor hole. Works mighty fine. Not withstanding what some have claimed, several of my percussion Colts were right on, not needing anything as was my Richards II cat-ridge revolver (all Uberti's). One of these days I'll attempt Pettifoggers method, but the brass washers do the trick.       

Crow Choker
Darksider-1911 Shooter-BOLD Chambers-RATS-SCORRS-STORM-1860 Henry(1866)-Colt Handgun Lover an' Fan-NRA-"RiverRat"-Conservative American Patriot and Former Keeper & Enforcer of the Law an' Proud of Being Both! >oo

Offline riflee

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Re: barrel/cylinder gap fix?
« Reply #41 on: January 12, 2019, 10:25:52 am »
Crow Chocker!! Hey Hombre. You are entering the ,"Kitchen Table Gunsmith Master Guild Association", with all the expertise you've expanded upon.  :o ;)

You must be going to the best gunsmith supply there is...the hardware store. ;D

You're lucky to get some guns that are spot on right off the bat. 

If you need something to do to enter the exceptional arena with cap&baller home schooling you could get into some casehardening of hammers and triggers and even Colt or Remington frames.  Maybe before casehardening triggers you could study up on trigger jobs with positive engagement ,negative engagement and neutral engagement.  Just sayin!  Why not go even further to get yer Masters Degree?  :o

I'll drive ya crazy yet Bud.  :'( :'( ;D ;D ;D ;D