Jump to content
SASS Wire Forum

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

jrswanson1

Who reams chambers on revolvers?

Recommended Posts

I'm pretty sure this has been asked before, but some folks stopped doing this kind of work so I'll ask again. I need a .44 Special cylinder reamed to 44-40. Does anyone still do that? Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shoot the .44 spl. It's a fine revolver cartridge. No difference with revolver cleanup between .44 spl and .44-40 anyway. And it's obvious when you have a .44-40 in your loading strip instead of a .44 spl. (assuming you have a .44-40 rifle)

 

But, if you are dieing to try, and you have a big enough cylinder diameter, I'd talk with Alan Harton of Houston or Ronnie at Run-n-Iron shop in Nebraska.

 

Good luck, GJ

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As OLG said, it can't feasibly be done. .44 spl has a bigger throat and bullet diameter. You can't ream a cylinder to a smaller diameter. Now, if you fit a smaller caliber cylinder to the gun, it could work. But a .44 spl cylinder will not clean up properly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You could possibly find someone who has a custom .44-40 reamer which is cut so it reams for .429 diameter slugs. That would not be purely SAAMI spec compliant, but that is how some of the modern .44-40 revolvers are being produced, so that they can use .429 groove diameter barrels.

 

It would require that the gunsmith would know his way around single action revolvers pretty well. Thus, the two folks recommended in my first post on this topic.

:lol:

 

Good luck, GJ

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As Garrison Joe, mentioned, contact Alan Harton, of Single Action Service, in Houston, TX. He can give you options.

 

OkDee

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Do not ruin a perfectly good cylinder, buy and extra in 44-40 and have it fitted. I have a pair of Uberti ERs in 44-40 and have been planning a pair of 44 spec cylinders for a spell, still waiting on the moneys, thinking we are talking some big bucks on this one!!! I like the idea of of using 44 Russians in the 44 Special cylinder.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Do not ruin a perfectly good cylinder, buy and extra in 44-40 and have it fitted. I have a pair of Uberti ERs in 44-40 and have been planning a pair of 44 spec cylinders for a spell, still waiting on the moneys, thinking we are talking some big bucks on this one!!! I like the idea of of using 44 Russians in the 44 Special cylinder.

 

+1

 

I have been thinking the exact same thing.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's the situation. I don't have any actual firearms in .44 Special. I have 3 revolvers and 1 rifle in 44-40. I don't have the dies for a .44 Special. What I have is a revolver made by ASM that I want to convert back to .44 Special. The previous owner had a smith take the original 4 3/4".44 barrel off and installed a 5 1/2" 32-20 barrel and cylinder on that revolver. The smith didn't quite get it right when he installed the 32-20 barrel, and the front sight is canted. The previous owner then filed the front sight to compensate for this. The original barrel and cylinder are in oiled bags. The 32-20 barrel now has two stuck bullets in it. So the plan is to have a smith swap the barrel back on, and ream the cylinder to 44-40. Since I'm shooting BP 44-40s now, and have one 4 3/4" barreled 44-40 Running Iron, I'd like another 4 3/4" barreled 44-40 with enough of a cylinder gap to deal with the fouling from BP, which my two Uberti Bisleys don't.

 

I'll ping Ronnie and Alan when I get the chance. Thanks, gents.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The reason that folks say "It can't be done!" is that the original .44-40 cartridge was for bullets between .424-.427". Original Colt's Frontier Six Shooters I've checked had barrels with .427" groove diameters, but throats could be as small as .4245"! I've measured Winchester rifles chambered for .44-40 (.44 WCF for purists) that had barrels with groove diameters as large as .434", but wouldn't chamber .429" bulleted cartridges! Modern manufacturers, such as Ruger and Uberti have generally used .429" barrels, which are made on the same rifling equipment as their .44 Magnums. But...when Ruger first chambered the old model Vaqueros in .44-40, they stuck with chambers based on the SAAMI cartridge specs for the cylinder chamber throats, but went with the magnum barrels. :wacko: It took a bunch of pressure from Your Obedient Servant and Mike "Duke" Venturino to get Ruger to enlarge the chambers...though they left the throats at .425". :wacko::wacko: Eventually, just before discontinuing the .44-40's, they did open the throats up to .429-.230". The New Vaqueros cannot be chambered for .44-40 because the cylinders are smaller than the Old Model, and the rims would overlap. That would apply to the special run .44 Specials in the New Vaqueros. OTOH, the other manufacturers' guns could probably be reamed out, but you might need a special reamer that will cut the throats to .430", with matching chamber sizes. As was suggested, you might try to find .44-40 cylinders that would fit the gun, and have both it and the .44 special cylinder set up interchangeably. I've done that with a pair of Old Model Vaqueos, but the one cylinder is .44 Magnum. I left the throats in the .44-40 cylinders .425", but the chambers are big enough to accept .44-40 ammo with .430" bullets. Shooting hard-cast (BHN 17-22) produces excellent accuracy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's the situation. I don't have any actual firearms in .44 Special. I have 3 revolvers and 1 rifle in 44-40. I don't have the dies for a .44 Special. What I have is a revolver made by ASM that I want to convert back to .44 Special. The previous owner had a smith take the original 4 3/4".44 barrel off and installed a 5 1/2" 32-20 barrel and cylinder on that revolver. The smith didn't quite get it right when he installed the 32-20 barrel, and the front sight is canted. The previous owner then filed the front sight to compensate for this. The original barrel and cylinder are in oiled bags. The 32-20 barrel now has two stuck bullets in it. So the plan is to have a smith swap the barrel back on, and ream the cylinder to 44-40. Since I'm shooting BP 44-40s now, and have one 4 3/4" barreled 44-40 Running Iron, I'd like another 4 3/4" barreled 44-40 with enough of a cylinder gap to deal with the fouling from BP, which my two Uberti Bisleys don't.

 

I'll ping Ronnie and Alan when I get the chance. Thanks, gents.

I think, by the time you are through, you will spend more money than if you just went and bought a new gun...period.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's an ASM. They have been out of production for quite a while and had a reputation for very spotty QC. By the time you have all the work done you could probably find a used Uberti for about the same price.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not going to really ask how, or why, your 32-20 barrel now has 2 stuck bullets in it. However, As noted by Pettifogger, ASM has been out of business for a long time now. Finding parts that will fit them is somewhat of a crap shoot. As has been pointed out, by the time you fiddle around trying to "convert" your ASM, you'll probably have more than the price of lightly used Uberti 4 3/4 44-40 invested in the project.

My suggestion would be to get the stuck bullets out of the 32-20 barrel and put a new front sight on it. While you wouldn't be able to use it for CAS, with a dovetail front sight, you'd have a dandy plinker.

 

Coffinmaker

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I got a bag of parts from the guy, too. Yeah, I can get a new one instead of throwing money at this one, but it has sentimental value to me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Since I'm shooting BP 44-40s now, and have one 4 3/4" barreled 44-40 Running Iron, I'd like another 4 3/4" barreled 44-40 with enough of a cylinder gap to deal with the fouling from BP, which my two Uberti Bisleys don't.

 

 

You, of course, realize that the b/c gap can be easily be opened. I have my Vaqueros gapped at .008" and never have a issue with fouling affecting function. I can shoot six stages without having to clean or wipe the cylinder face.

 

Ditto on Coffinmakers comment about leaving it as a 32-20. Assuming the barrel isn't bulged it is a desirable gun by 32-30 fanboys such as myself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know Springfield Slim shoots 44 OT's that had the cylinders opened up to 44wcf. I don't know who did the work for him, perhaps he did it himself. Here's his website that will give you contact info.

 

http://www.whyteleatherworks.com/

 

Another option would be to have the gunsmith refit the 44 special barrel and cylinder, then have the 32.20 cylinder drilled and reamed to 44wcf. This would assure proper fitment of the cartridge to the cylinder and give you a convertable revolver the would shoot 44wcf, 44 Russian, 44 Colt and 44 Special.

 

I seem to recall that the ASM's were made to second generation Colt specs. I also think I remember seeing where the current crop of Pietta's are to those same dimensions. So perhaps a cylinder from a current made Pietta in 44wcf would be an option. In fact if you look here

 

http://www.vtigunparts.com/store/shopdisplayproducts.asp?id=74&cat=Pietta+1873+Colt+GWII

 

you see that the cylinder for a Pietta Great Western II is listed as fitting for the ASM. "Pietta Cylinder .44/40 (1873 SA, AWA, ASM, Colt 1st & 2nd)"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.