Jump to content
SASS Wire Forum

Archived

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

Charlie MacNeil, SASS #48580

Whose 1851 Navy .36 is the “best”?

Recommended Posts

And who would be the best ‘smith to tune ‘em?

 

So here’s the deal: I’ve been jonesin’ for a pair of .36 caliber 1851 Navies to use in Classic Cowboy, but I have no idea of who sells the best quality C&B pistolas or who to have do action work on ‘em. I know nobody here is shy about handin’ out opinions so fire away, folks, but let’s keep it civil, shall we? :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bar none:  Colt 2nd Gen 1851s.  Mine were done by the best... but he's not taking more work.  there are several smiths that are just as capable.    If I were to have to do it over, I'd certainly give LongHunter a try.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mike @Goonsgunworks.com has tuned several Cap Guns for Me .

Mike does Very High Quality work .

And your Guns Will Last Three Life Times When He's Done With Them !

Rooster 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
40 minutes ago, Tyrel Cody said:

Get some Piettas when Cabelas has a sale and send them to Mike: http://www.goonsgunworks.com

 

They are on sale right now

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Goons Gun Works

 

The best cap n ball tuner around.

 

Read Capt. Baylor 2 articles in the Chronicle.

 

He does all my guns and they are super smooth and RELIABLE! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I own both Pietta and Uberti 51's and 61's.

If you are after an accurate (25/50m accurate) close copy of the original and are going to keep the work to the bare minimum to make it comp workable then the Uberti 7.5" 1851 would be my pick. You will need slix nipples and some work is likely needed to adjust the fit of the cylinder to the barrel (it can be a bit tight).

 

If you want a cowboy game gun with a shorter barrel then the 7.5" Uberti (you can go as short as 3") and even less work (slix nipples is all I have done to mine but some need the bolt refined a bit, from what I have read) then the Pietta in any of quite a few different models are hard to beat.

 

My options are based on the minimum amount of work (and can be done from instructions freely available on the net) if you want to go the whole hog then you guys in the USA know better about that then your poor ol kissin cousins down south.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nother one 0 them can-0-worms questions.  It depends on your context and your definition of "best."  Best in appearance is probably going to give the nod to Uberti as marketed by Cimarron.  With Uberti, your stuck with a single configuration.  A Reproduction of the original.  Unfortunately, mechanically, the Uberti is a PITA to set up.  Until the perennial non existent Barrel to Arbor fit is corrected, any other work is futile.  I don't like Uberti 1851s.

 

Pietta is going to be the most versatile.  You can pick your barrel length.  The Barrel to Arbor fit will be 99.99% correct.  Once you have the gun, you can mix and match all sorts of different combinations of parts and create some really fun "never never" guns.  Pietta's line are all built on the same base 1851 frame.  Whether .36 or 44, the lock works are all the same, with parts that interchange with some minor fitting.  I like Pietta Cap Gun.  ALL of my personal Main Match Cap guns are built on Pietta frames.

 

As far as someone to set em up, I'd tell you to send em to me (Pietta), but I can't do that.  I'm retired.  So you have Mike Brackett at Goons Gunworks and Longhunter (Uberti).

 

Oh, forgot, the nicest (my opine) .36 51s currently are the "Capt. Schaeffer" reproduction 4 inch barreled guns (Pietta) from EMF.  And, please understand, there are NO Cap Guns ready to play out of the box.  NONE.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the info, folks. If I do make this happen these would be main match guns, so I want something that’s gonna last and give me the least amount of trouble over the long haul. It sounds like I need to start savin’ pennies...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
22 hours ago, Redwood Kid said:

After looking at those gorgeous Long Hunter pistols, I’m afraid I’ll die of old age before I can save up that many pennies, but they would sure be nice to have...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I bought three .44 Navys made by Pietta from Cabelas when they were on sale and I love them.  The .44 may be ahistorical, but they really ring the steel.  I stoned all of the points of friction and adjusted the fit of the bolt per Larsen's instructions, replaced the bolt/trigger springs with Wolffe wire springs and replaced the nipples with Slix-Shot nipples.  I've not had a single cap jam ever since and they run quite smooth.  All it cost to upgrade them myself was $36 for the nipples and I think it was $6 for the bolt/trigger spring, so it was under $50 per gun.  Anyone with the right tools and PATIENCE can do it just fine. 

 

You could also put a weaker mainspring in them, but if you don't know what you're doing, you could induce hammer bounce.  As a former machinist, armorer and tinkerer, I felt confident with what I already did, but I am no gunsmith, so I figured why chance it when my guns are working perfectly?  Besides, when the buzzer goes off, I don't even feel the hammer rolling back.  :)

 

BTW, when I checked arbor length per Larsen's instructions, all three of mine were perfect.  I hear that's a rarity with Uberti's and a PITA to correct.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well,

  First of all a mighty big thanks to Tyrel Cody, Rooster Ron, Judge Duncan and Coffinmaker for the kind words / "shout out"!! Greatly appreciated!!

  If I've learned anything at all in this wonderful world of " gun tuning " it's that tuners are as individual as the guns we work on. It is a specialized profession / "art" if you will and all of us have our own ideas as to what makes the "ultimate" setup for the S.A. in question. 

  I've had Blackpowder in my blood since my Jr. year in H.S. and I'll be 61 next month (time flies!)!! I am an admitted perfectionist (sometimes to a fault!) but stand behind everthing I do. I learned the "meat" of what I do from whom I think is the most knowledgeable tuner in the business today. That would be Mr. Jim Martin. Jim was pretty much the brains/go to tuner for Jerry Kuhnhausen for his most excellent book on the Colt Single Action Army.  A young Jim Martin learned much of his craft from Mr. Bob Howard who worked at Colt in the first part of the last century!!  Bob "unlocked" the secrets of how to make S.A.s last in a fast draw competition world that was the craze in the 50's/60's  .  .  .   

   Therefore, I feel like I'm "one breath away" from learning from THE teacher of tuners!!  It's been quite the experience going from what I thought would be a "great hobby"  to transitioning into a full-time occupation!! Who'd a thunk?!!!  I'm very happy to help those that want to DIY or answer questions about "what or how to do".  Jim explained to me that this is definitely a " dying art" and was  happy to help me in my endeavor to keep this "tuning thing" alive instead of  everyone being subject to the "parts changer". All of the parts in these weapons are a hand fit ordeal. They may "function" sometimes with a new part, but there is a process and procedure.  The design is 19th century and so is the build.

  

 As far as the op's question, I think Coffinmaker spelled it out quite well. For authenticity, Uberti is the answer. For the most "options available" setup, Pietta has it!!  Of course, Uberti has the arbor length problem (no need to "test" it, they are all short) but, it's an easy enough fix so that shouldn't be the deciding factor. All of the copies we have available (Colt pattern or Remington) can all be brought to Ruger 3 screw durability!! Seriously!! During the last 3+ yrs I've been developing the conversion to coil spring actuation for both Colt type and Remington type actions to give the shooter the closest thing to a "Ruger that looks like a Colt or Remington " as possible. Just because they were  conceived in the 19th century doesn't mean they can't be brought (at least) into the 20th century!! Therefore, a bow and a thanks to Ruger for thinking outside the box!!

 

This setup is what I call the "Outlaw Mule" service and is basically what all revolvers are receiving these days.  I should have my website updated with this info soon.

 

 Thanks again to all and .  .  .  . I'll shut up now !!

 

Mike

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your post, Mike. Now I just have to decide what, when and if...

 

And a big thank you to everyone else who posted replies as well!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/2/2018 at 9:43 PM, Charlie MacNeil, SASS #48580 said:

After looking at those gorgeous Long Hunter pistols, I’m afraid I’ll die of old age before I can save up that many pennies, but they would sure be nice to have...

Well you did ask for the best. I am in the same boat. Every time I get close to saving up enough for one or two, I end up buying something else. Such is life in this game we play

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 6/2/2018 at 5:32 PM, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

Unfortunately, mechanically, the Uberti is a PITA to set up.  Until the perennial non existent Barrel to Arbor fit is corrected, any other work is futile.  I don't like Uberti 1851s.

 

I bought a Cimarron 1851 a couple months ago and the arbor fit was perfect. So they do let a good one slip out of the plant every now and then.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Redwood Kid said:

Well you did ask for the best. I am in the same boat. Every time I get close to saving up enough for one or two, I end up buying something else. Such is life in this game we play

Funny how that works sometimes, eh? :D

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.