Author Topic: EMF Great Western II Californian review  (Read 2559 times)

Offline blfuller

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EMF Great Western II Californian review
« on: January 11, 2020, 02:23:15 PM »
I recently purchased a EMF Great Western II Californian with a 5 1/2" barrel and I am very impressed with the quality of the revolver. This is made by Pietta. It has a floating firing pin, pressed in recoil plate and walnut grips that have a very nice flame to it. Four clicks when you cock the hammer. Sights are of the wider variety for easier sighting

It also has a hand spring setup similar to what Ruger uses with a coil spring and detent instead of the leaf spring on the hand. No more broken hand springs.

The only thing is that the base pin is an extended type with two grooves for the cross pin. This is sort of a safety mechanism that prevents the hammer from contacting the primer. For authenticity, this is easily fixed by cutting it to the proper length or you can buy an aftermarket base pin. Or if you want you don't need to do anything and leave it as is.







Offline Major 2

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2020, 04:15:17 PM »
That is some nice grips
when planets align...do the deal !

Offline LonesomePigeon

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2020, 09:56:32 PM »
Good looking sixgun.

Offline chucksolo1

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2020, 11:23:49 AM »
I love mine, a .357 mag model!

Offline Galloway

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #4 on: January 15, 2020, 01:42:41 PM »
Very nice! Whats the difference between that and the californian?

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #5 on: Today at 06:07:36 PM »

Offline chucksolo1

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2020, 10:26:46 AM »
The Deluxe Californian comes with checkered walnut grips or faux ivory and costs $20.00 more.

Offline Coffinmaker

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2020, 02:14:41 PM »

 ;D  SOAP BOX MODE .... ON   ;D

I'VE only been crowing for some Lustrum, the best value for dollar for CAS guns are PIETTA!!


 ::)  Soap Box Mode .... OFF   ::)

Offline blfuller

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #7 on: January 22, 2020, 07:30:29 PM »
Very nice! Whats the difference between that and the californian?

This one is the standard Californian.

As mentioned the Deluxe Californian is available in Ultra Ivory or Checkered Walnut grips.

The Deluxe Grande Californian is engraved with a combination of Victorian scroll-work and sunbursts on the blued barrel and deep rich color-casehardened frame, it is accented with a one-piece diamond checkered grip.

Offline RUSS123

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #8 on: February 10, 2020, 02:02:11 AM »
Beautiful gun. Mine is the Pietta Frontier stainless 7.5 and it also has no hammer safety with 4 clicks. The two position  base pin I pay no attention to. Do however, check the bolt fit to each cylinder slot. Mine was a little oversized but easy to correct.
Russ

Pietta Frontier 7.5 357mag
Uberti 1872 OT 7.5 38 Sp.
Ruger Blackhawk Hunter 44mag
Ruger Single Six Hunter 7.5 22mag Conv.
Ruger Vaquero New 5.5 357mag

Offline chucksolo1

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #9 on: February 10, 2020, 03:12:10 PM »
I found out the hard way that my Deluxe Californian does NOT have a leaf spring that returns the hand so that the cylinder turns freely on half cock. There is a plunger and spring located right under the left screw that holds on the backstop and is next to the hammer that serves that function. If you remove the backstop to change out the grip panels, you must make sure that that minute spring doesn't fly out as mine did. With out that spring, the cylinder will NOT index on half cock and the cylinder will free wheel. The spring needs to be the right size and tension too. After having the  spring replaced witt a non -OEM one by a gunsmith, the spring was too short and week and would not allow the cylinder to index correctly or lock up tightly. Beware of this when changing out the grips on your Deluxe Calfornian or other Pietta 2nd and 3rd generation SAA clones. The very small spring is available from EMF for $4.50. My gun is now back to normal after having the right spring put back in it.

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #10 on: Today at 06:07:36 PM »

Offline RUSS123

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #10 on: February 10, 2020, 04:15:50 PM »
I found out the hard way that my Deluxe Californian does NOT have a leaf spring that returns the hand so that the cylinder turns freely on half cock. There is a plunger and spring located right under the left screw that holds on the backstop and is next to the hammer that serves that function. If you remove the backstop to change out the grip panels, you must make sure that that minute spring doesn't fly out as mine did. With out that spring, the cylinder will NOT index on half cock and the cylinder will free wheel. The spring needs to be the right size and tension too. After having the  spring replaced witt a non -OEM one by a gunsmith, the spring was too short and week and would not allow the cylinder to index correctly or lock up tightly. Beware of this when changing out the grips on your Deluxe Calfornian or other Pietta 2nd and 3rd generation SAA clones. The very small spring is available from EMF for $4.50. My gun is now back to normal after having the right spring put back in it.

Twice, I've done that, flying hand spring. Both times took place when I was putting the backstrap back onto the frame. I had it lined up for the frame screws, spring pressed in straight and somehow, the backstrap shifted downward just a bit and the springs popped out and went flying. I heard one of them bouncing off the wall. One, I did find the next day. The other... I have no idea, looked everywhere. Probably deep in the pile of the rug somewhere. I keep two extra springs on hand now along with an extra plunger. Plungers are just as easy to lose as well.
Russ

Pietta Frontier 7.5 357mag
Uberti 1872 OT 7.5 38 Sp.
Ruger Blackhawk Hunter 44mag
Ruger Single Six Hunter 7.5 22mag Conv.
Ruger Vaquero New 5.5 357mag

Offline Coffinmaker

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2020, 12:06:20 PM »

OK (Tee Hee Hee Hee)

If you really wanna have fun, launch the tiny itty bitty retaining screw Uberti uses into the dust bunnies (not that I EVER did that).

First, put the plunger and spring into the hole (important ... plunger first).  Then put the back strap in position and start with bottom screw.  Couple of turns.  Then tip the back strap into position and just hold it lightly against the spring as you start the top screws.  This should keep the Back Strap blocking the spring thingie.  It still begs to keep a couple of springs in the 'ol spares box.  Not that I've ever sent the spring on sabbatical.  Nah.  Not me. (Snicker snicker)

Offline chucksolo1

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2020, 11:18:39 AM »
My solution........it'll be a cold day in hell before I take the damn backstrap off again!! The Engeaved walnut grips on my gun are just fine I have decided!

Offline LonesomePigeon

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #13 on: February 16, 2020, 07:19:04 PM »
Food for thought, are you more likely to loose a coil spring or break a flat spring?

Offline Coffinmaker

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #14 on: February 17, 2020, 09:35:50 AM »

Oh good grief   ::)

Offline Bunk

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #15 on: February 17, 2020, 10:38:33 AM »
If I am taking apart something that may be spring loaded it is done inside a big zip lock bag. Then all the springy thingies that DID NOT launch into low orbit are right there.
A cookie sheet holding an upside down magnetic sign is a handy repository for the bag contents. If they are iron or steel they are stuck on the magnetic back. Very handy for fumble fingered gun  butchers like me.
Bunk

Offline Coal Creek Griff

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #16 on: February 17, 2020, 12:22:46 PM »
When I launched my coil hand spring and plunger, I found the spring, but not the plunger.  I made a new one our of a piece of drill bit, all rounded up and polished, etc.  THEN, I found the lost plunger (I had thought that it had gone across the room, but it was right at my feet the whole time).  Now I have a spare.  That means that I will never lose the plunger again, just the spring...

CC Griff
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Offline Cholla Hill Tirador

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #17 on: February 18, 2020, 03:07:13 AM »
 I have been sore tempted to order one of these. They're beautiful revolvers and I have not read a single disparaging remark about them.

  That said, I HATE the "improved" coil spring. I mean good grief....in this day and age with our improved metallurgy, how often do those leaf springs break??

  If/when I buy one of these revolvers, I will purchase two hands with leaf springs; one to install and a spare!

  CHT

Offline chucksolo1

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #18 on: February 18, 2020, 11:30:14 AM »
To be fair, the only reason I mentioned the coil spring isn't that it's inferior or superior to the leaf spring, but because I really wasn't aware of it's existence since most of the SAA type guns I have owned (including a genuine Colt) all had the leaf spring. The coil spring works just as well, and is probably more durable. My Deluxe Californian is in my opinion, better made than my Third Generation Colt SAA .357 and prettier too. On my Colt, there was slight fore and aft play on the cylinder and also up and down play as well. This caused magnum loads to blast the bluing off the front of the cylinder chambers. My Deluxe Californian has absolutely NO play in the cylinder at all and locks up very tightly. It is very accurate and I believe it is one of the best SAA type guns I have ever owned.

Offline RUSS123

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Re: EMF Great Western II Californian review
« Reply #19 on: February 19, 2020, 12:27:55 PM »
To be fair, the only reason I mentioned the coil spring isn't that it's inferior or superior to the leaf spring, but because I really wasn't aware of it's existence since most of the SAA type guns I have owned (including a genuine Colt) all had the leaf spring. The coil spring works just as well, and is probably more durable. My Deluxe Californian is in my opinion, better made than my Third Generation Colt SAA .357 and prettier too. On my Colt, there was slight fore and aft play on the cylinder and also up and down play as well. This caused magnum loads to blast the bluing off the front of the cylinder chambers. My Deluxe Californian has absolutely NO play in the cylinder at all and locks up very tightly. It is very accurate and I believe it is one of the best SAA type guns I have ever owned.

I never owned a colt to compare with a Pietta but I agree with the fit and finish though mine is stainless. Externally, the finish is very well done. Internally as well except for the Bolt. The cylinder on mine has near zero end shake with a .003" BC gap. The Bolt however was never touched or fitted to the cylinder slots which left it to be slightly oversized. The width of the Bolt head measured .159" with a digital caliper and the slots were measuring between .156" to .158". In fact, you will find that the slot from one side to the other may not be identical in width so you need to check both ends and go by the smallest reading if that's the case.

To correct it: I stoned down the "trailing" side tip of the Bolt to just fit the slot with the narrowest width. Funny thing is, it was locking up and shooting just fine but what I began to notice was a very slight peening to the top edge center of each cylinder slot. The bolt was just catching the edge apparently to fool me into thinking that lock-up was solid all the way around. The Bolt should be dropping deep into the slot, not catching the edge only. Fortunately it's new and had only been to the range once to fire 50 rounds. Yours may be just fine but the only way to know for sure is to take the Bolt out and manually feel how it fits into each cylinder slot if you don't have a caliper to measure.

If you have a good eye, good light and something to magnify, you may be able to observe the bolt dropping into each slot while slowly cycling the action without taking anything apart.
Russ

Pietta Frontier 7.5 357mag
Uberti 1872 OT 7.5 38 Sp.
Ruger Blackhawk Hunter 44mag
Ruger Single Six Hunter 7.5 22mag Conv.
Ruger Vaquero New 5.5 357mag

 

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