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Bisley Joe

Cap and Ball for Competition?

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13 hours ago, Sedalia Dave said:

 

Never seat caps with your fingers. There was a picture posted a couple of years ago by a shooter that had a cap go off while seating it with his thumb. Earned him the alias of Split Thumb. Buy a capper and use it along with a non metalic push stick. Note that it is a PUSH stick and not a jam it on stick.

 

I love the Polish Capper. Costs a little more but worth it in my opinion.

 

Thanks for telling about Polish Cappers! I think I'm gonna git me one!

 

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12 hours ago, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

 

Odd Man out here.  Since I shoot Subs (APP) I am able to for go all the hassle with "lubes."  APP Makes it's own lube.  My only addition to the .36 discussion is putting up with called misses when you have actually hit the target.  36 ball is kind of quiet on impact.  More of a light "thunk" rather than a "KLANG."  I found a cure for that though.  EPP UG - 36 Big Lube Bullet.  Drops from the mold at 380 "as cast" and 90Gr weight.  Arrives at the target with a nice loud 38ish klang.  Added benefit, the EPP UG - 36, being a "Big Lube" carries a lot of lube.  Actually a shipping container of lube.  Pan lube and shoot as cast and you'll be amazed.  The bullet also has a step at the bottom that aids in squaring up the bullet for ramming.  If your gonna buy a mold to get .380 projectiles, try the ultimate .36 projectile.  Google Big Lube bullets.  (Shameless Plug for Dick Dastardly)

 

That EPP 36 looks like a nice bullet! But at $109 for the mold, and another $45 for the handles... OUCH!

I see the Lee .380 double ball mold, with handles, at Track of the Wolf for $22.59, and a six ball mold for $63.99 plus handles for $14.99

 

I know these are for round ball, but just seems like the other ones are a bit too much. But then, you're saying they work really good, so it may be worth it.

Do you know anywhere that has the EPP 36 for considerably less?

 

Thank you!

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One more thing...

 

I'm planning on melting pure led in an old small pot over a single electric stove element thing. Does that work or will I need more heat? I have a turkey fryer contraption that I can use as the burner, with a small pot over the flame.

I will then pour the molten led using a ladle.

 

Do you think the 6 ball mold is worth the price of about $79 compare to the two ball mold for just over $22? Do you find production a lot faster one way or the other-or no significant reason?

 

Still tempted by the EPP UG - 36. But... I keep hearing that round ball is very accurate.

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5 hours ago, Bisley Joe said:

One more thing...

 

I'm planning on melting pure led in an old small pot over a single electric stove element thing. Does that work or will I need more heat? I have a turkey fryer contraption that I can use as the burner, with a small pot over the flame.

I will then pour the molten led using a ladle.

 

Do you think the 6 ball mold is worth the price of about $79 compare to the two ball mold for just over $22? Do you find production a lot faster one way or the other-or no significant reason?

 

Still tempted by the EPP UG - 36. But... I keep hearing that round ball is very accurate.

 

Buy yourself one of the Lee PRO 4-20 Lead Melter Academy Sporting goods has them for $65 right now with free shipping. That is a really good price. You can buy a cheaper pot but for the money this is the best one to have.  If you really want to spend less I have a couple of the Lee production pots and will sell you one of them as I no longer use them. The next step up in lead pot quality will cost a couple hundred more at least.

 

It sounds high but the price for the EPP UG - 36 is what other bullet moulds cost and AFAIK that is the only place to get that particular mould. Lee moulds cost less but being made of aluminum you have to take good care of them to prevent damage.

 

For our game round balls are plenty accurate enough but unless the spotters are paying attention you will get misses called when you actually hit the target. When that happens don't get upset. Take the high road and continue on. It has happened to all of us at one time or another and sooner or later the opposite happens and you will miss a target but the spotters will not see it.

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Thing to remember .... the EPP UG - 36 mold set up is a "one time" purchase.  From then on, you gotz the very bestest .36 Bullet there be.  Cheap seats??  Nah, not when I can go for first class!!

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2 hours ago, Sedalia Dave said:

 

It sounds high but the price for the EPP UG - 36 is what other bullet moulds cost and AFAIK that is the only place to get that particular mould. Lee moulds cost less but being made of aluminum you have to take good care of them to prevent damage.

The Big Lube molds look like aluminum to me?

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'Making Useable Combustible Paper Cartridges'
     44 Cal Combustible Cartridges
Compliments of Sgt John Chapman

Some of this is to your preference, so I will tell you what I did and you can take it from there.
For the 44cal cartridges I use Bugler cigarette papers they measure roughly 1 1/2\" x 2 3/4\" . A piece of a 7/16\" dowel stick long enough to handle, (at least 6\"),  Saltpetre, an Elmer\'s glue stick, and scissors. Optional things Dehydrator with sheet plastic for fruit roll-ups.
(For 36 cal. I use a 3/8\" dowel and for 31 cal. I use a 5/16 dowel)
Against the steel rule you can see the approximate length of the dowels(mine are too short) and the taper this is the part where you need to find your own preference. You want the taper to allow you a good angle to load and to create a \"paper cup\" just big enough to hold your powder charge and hold it tight, a lose powder bag will rip easier than a tight one.
Keep in mind here you may have to revamp the shape of the dowel after a few tries so it will work better......I think I went through 4 or so...........
 

Stuff Used
 
 
 
OK, her we go, break out about twelve papers, mix up a solution of Saltpetre and water, about 1 cup of water and two teaspoons of the Saltpetre, and lay the papers flat in the solution so they wont bunch up. This will be the toughest part of this whole thing. After about an hour very carefully, with a set of tweezers or something of that order, pull the papers out one at a time and place them on the Fruit Roll-up sheet in the dehydrator or on a sheet of wax paper and let them dry. Sounds simple enough but don\'t cuss me when you try it. Dry time in the Dehydrator is about 15 - 20 minutes on the wax paper I guess it depends on the day. I do a whole book of papers just to get it out of the way and put them in a Ziploc bag, you will ruin some papers but keep them you will need them later. Don\'t do any more than 12 at a time it\'s too much to handle.
 
After you get all the papers done you might need to smooth some of them out a little, I used the steel rule in the picture and drug it lightly across the top of the paper and against a hard smooth surface like the kitchen counter tops, again you will see what you can get away with, just go easy.  I then cut my papers to 1 1/2\" x a sliver over 1\", again yours may be different due to a smaller powder charge or whatever. What you want to wind up with is about 1/16th \" fold over on the base of the \"cup\" we are making. We now take the papers that were cut and carefully wrap them around the dowel and glue the seam with the glue stick, with it tapered the bottom will overlap a little extra don\'t worry that\'s fine . Once that\'s done out of the extra paper left over or out of  the ruined papers cut a 3/8 x 3/8\" square  and glue it to the bottom of the cup.   Hopefully this drawing will help a little?
                                                             
 Fold over.....

Fold Over Picture
 
Cutting the Paper.......

Cutting the Paper Picture
     
I cut a lot of these squares at one time. What this does is form a cup which will hold the powder but is thin enough to let the cap blow through this is the secret to the whole thing, most \"Paper Cartridges\" made are twisted at the end or all folded up and even if you use a pick the cap cannot flame past it all. This method cures that.
Make a handful of the cups and then move on, later when you have figured out the correct \"cup\" you can mass produce them . I have about 1000 cups extra and the slugs and periodically when I need them I powder them and put them together.
Any way, make your powder charges, I do this one at a time to prevent mishaps, and I throw 30 gn 3F Black from my flask into the cup and tap it down . I then take a slug made with Lee Precisions 200gn Conical, cap and ball mould put glue around the base and put it in the top of the cup. This sounds a little difficult but go slow the glue softens the paper a little and it usually slips right over with a slight twisting motion, at this point square the bullet out and let them dry over night. you can also substitute round balls at this point but grease over them after loading.
 
 
http://www.midwayusa.com/rewriteaproduct/285116  
 
http://www.midsouthshooterssupply.com/item...?sku=0000690382
  This is the Bullet mould.
 
Last of all, I took the Bees Wax/Crisco mix we use with BP and wiped it into the exposed grease groove working towards the nose as not to get any on the paper.
Now your ready to shoot, it\'s my understanding that enough contact is made on the sides of this slug that you don\'t have to put lube over the top like balls.
 
 
When loading these animals will be a little snug getting them under the ram sometimes , if you push firmly, straight down they will pop down a little more and have more room  if you need it, with round balls you wont have this problem.
 
Regards,
 
 Sgt John Chapman
 
If I left anything out or seemed to have, or you have any questions,  give me a holler...............  
cav_rider4570@yahoo.com
 
 
 
 

 

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More great information!

THANK YOU!

Can't tell how many bullets the Big Lube makes each run.

Maybe I'll start with the simple ball double mold. Then if I really get into it, I can order the Big Lube mold.

 

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59 minutes ago, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

 

Thing to remember .... the EPP UG - 36 mold set up is a "one time" purchase.  From then on, you gotz the very bestest .36 Bullet there be.  Cheap seats??  Nah, not when I can go for first class!!

This:D, yer gonna make along day using a two cavity mold. Get a six cavity even if you want to sick to round ball, you only pay once;). Good Luck:)

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Posted (edited)

Good point about taking all day.

 

Added the book to my cart. Thanks!

 

As far as the Big Lube mold, OK so it's six cavities.

 

I noticed they're selling handles for about $45, and it says: "Fits all Big Lube®LLC and LEE Six cavity Professional molds. Easily interchangeable."

So I figure that means I can use a Lee handle on the Big Lube molds. Track of the Wolf has the handles for $14.99, which is a big difference.

 

It's still gonna be a bit before I can jump back in, so I'm gonna weigh the options.

On the one hand, ball is what was originally used and they are accurate.

On the other, the Big Lube bullets are getting kudos from you guys, and they seem to always make a good sound on the targets.

 

I can get a six cavity roundball mold and handle for about $70.

The Big Lube mold and handle will put me at $124, almost twice as much.

Just need to determine if it's really worth it. So far, from what some here have said, it may be.

 

So maybe I'll just order up some .380 roundballs, caps and powder, and shoot this pistol a bit to see how it feels. If I can find some bullets made in the Big Lube mold, I'll fire those too and compare.

 

Again, thank you!

Looking forward to shooting again!

Edited by Bisley Joe
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2 minutes ago, Bisley Joe said:

So maybe I'll just order up some .380 roundballs, caps and powder, and shoot this pistol a bit to see how it feels.

 

Absolutely the best course of action. Make sure you get Remington #10 caps. Go ahead and get either Slixx or Treso Nipples. Cabelas has 100 packs of round balls.

 

I'm sure you'll love it. My time is worth not casting but that's me and most of mine are .44 anyway so no worry with spotters not hearing impact.

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On 6/12/2019 at 10:31 PM, Bisley Joe said:

Thanks pards!

I guess doing a Pale Rider Reload is not allowed then!

 

 

Well, it’s not expressly forbidden but...

 

As it has been said, a dropped loaded cylinder is considered a loaded firearm.  

 

Believe it or not, that ruling is less than 10 years old.  SASS has been going on for how long??  The person who caused this ruling(:rolleyes:) had been shooting C&B’s for many years prior and is not a novice with handling them.  When it happened, the reasons are not important anymore (just that Murphy was in full force), it caused a big stir with as many folks agreeing to the ruling as there was folks saying it was wrong.  There is a 4+(that’s when I stopped looking) pages on the wire about it.  That was a while ago and a lot of water had gone under that bridge.  The club where it happened, still call it the “Bob Rule”.  At the time it happened, the Match Director made his call.  I agreed and accepted his call.  Next shooter.

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23 hours ago, Tyrel Cody said:

 

Absolutely the best course of action. Make sure you get Remington #10 caps. Go ahead and get either Slixx or Treso Nipples. Cabelas has 100 packs of round balls.

 

I'm sure you'll love it. My time is worth not casting but that's me and most of mine are .44 anyway so no worry with spotters not hearing impact.

Thanks.

 

Yeah, I'm just going to enjoy shooting them and figuring them out before spending time and money on molds and molding. I have so many things going on, including converting a school bus into an RV, that molding balls may just be something to do later-once I have more free time, naked in the desert.

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3 hours ago, Clueless Bob said:

Well, it’s not expressly forbidden but...

 

As it has been said, a dropped loaded cylinder is considered a loaded firearm.  

 

Believe it or not, that ruling is less than 10 years old.  SASS has been going on for how long??  The person who caused this ruling(:rolleyes:) had been shooting C&B’s for many years prior and is not a novice with handling them.  When it happened, the reasons are not important anymore (just that Murphy was in full force), it caused a big stir with as many folks agreeing to the ruling as there was folks saying it was wrong.  There is a 4+(that’s when I stopped looking) pages on the wire about it.  That was a while ago and a lot of water had gone under that bridge.  The club where it happened, still call it the “Bob Rule”.  At the time it happened, the Match Director made his call.  I agreed and accepted his call.  Next shooter.

Holy crap!

The cylinder fell and detonated some caps/chambers?

 

My worry about loading a new, charged and capped cylinder, is tapping one of those caps against the frame as I'm putting it in and BOOM!

Seems like the only safe way would be with a conversion that has metallic cartridges.

 

I'm fine with capping up at the loading table. That's just as fast as dropping in cartridges.

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OK.  Let us get technical.  By SASS rules, a Cap Gun cylinder, charged with Powder and Ball but UNCAPPED is not considered a LOADED gun.  A cylinder, charged with Powder and Ball and CAPPED is considered a loaded gun.  A loaded gun MAY NOT leave the loading table except enroute to the firing line.  Technically, you could cap extra cylinders at the loading table, but then you would be going to the firing line with too many loaded guns.  Capped cylinders may NOT be carried around in speed loader type pouches except to move to the firing line.  then you again have too many loaded guns.

 

Good, Bad, Indifferent .... no matter.  No Pale Rider reload allowed.

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1 hour ago, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

 

OK.  Let us get technical.  By SASS rules, a Cap Gun cylinder, charged with Powder and Ball but UNCAPPED is not considered a LOADED gun.  A cylinder, charged with Powder and Ball and CAPPED is considered a loaded gun.  A loaded gun MAY NOT leave the loading table except enroute to the firing line.  Technically, you could cap extra cylinders at the loading table, but then you would be going to the firing line with too many loaded guns.  Capped cylinders may NOT be carried around in speed loader type pouches except to move to the firing line.  then you again have too many loaded guns.

 

Good, Bad, Indifferent .... no matter.  No Pale Rider reload allowed.

Would a person be allowed to carry one C&B revolver with two cylinders: one in the revolver and capped at the loading table, the other loaded but not capped on the belt. Then, once the first cylinder is spent, load the second, cap it, and shoot?

Seems like a PIA for an 1851 Navy, but viable for a Remington.

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Posted (edited)
34 minutes ago, Bisley Joe said:

Would a person be allowed to carry one C&B revolver with two cylinders: one in the revolver and capped at the loading table, the other loaded but not capped on the belt. Then, once the first cylinder is spent, load the second, cap it, and shoot?

Seems like a PIA for an 1851 Navy, but viable for a Remington.

 

I could be wrong here. I started the day with precharged, uncapped cylinders. I also had 2 additional precharged, uncapped cylinders in my cart. (That was 4 guns and 2 spares)

During the match, after a stage was shot, I simply swapped cylinders, putting in a precharged, uncapped cylinder. At no point did I ever have a capped cylinder on or off the gun unless I was waiting at the loading table in line to shoot. 

There is not really a need to carry a spare cylinder to the firing line. If perchance the stage calls for a reload on the clock, I have read, that one loads 6 cylinders, caps five at the loading table and caps the 6th on the clock prior to shooting. 

Being a fairly new cap gun shooter, I’m still finding my way.

? Load with flasks, spare cylinders or paper cartridges? Load on or off the gun? Load in hand or on a stand? How much of a charge do I want? Light or Heavy?

Edited by John E.B. Rawton

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Bisley Joe ... :)

 

Yes, you may carry a fully charged but UNCAPPED cylinder on your person.  Vest pocket, Speed Loader type carrier, pouch .... any of the above.  I am unsure about the specific verbiage pertaining to carrying just one revolver and re-loading it during a stage.  I certainly would have no personal objection (But .. who am I to judge) however you would have to show BOTH cylinders empty at the unloading table.  Heck, one less gun to clean.

 

I personally could complete this with any of my Snubbies (Main Match Snubbies) every bit as fast as a Remington.  No real good reason to do though unless one gun quit and I couldn't fix it.

 

John E. B ..... For the on the clock one round reload ..... that's load 6 CHAMBERS, then cap the 6th chamber .........................

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3 hours ago, John E.B. Rawton said:

 

I could be wrong here. I started the day with precharged, uncapped cylinders. I also had 2 additional precharged, uncapped cylinders in my cart. (That was 4 guns and 2 spares)

During the match, after a stage was shot, I simply swapped cylinders, putting in a precharged, uncapped cylinder. At no point did I ever have a capped cylinder on or off the gun unless I was waiting at the loading table in line to shoot. 

There is not really a need to carry a spare cylinder to the firing line. If perchance the stage calls for a reload on the clock, I have read, that one loads 6 cylinders, caps five at the loading table and caps the 6th on the clock prior to shooting. 

Being a fairly new cap gun shooter, I’m still finding my way.

? Load with flasks, spare cylinders or paper cartridges? Load on or off the gun? Load in hand or on a stand? How much of a charge do I want? Light or Heavy?

The spare cylinder would be if I only used one pistol.

 

I'm still needing to work out the loads etc. But I'll be using paper cartridges for sure. I'm considering removing the loading lever on my pistol (and keeping it in my cart) and loading the cylinder/s on a stand.

For now I'll be using .375 or .38 balls.

If anyone has has five or six of those EPP-36 bullets from Big mold they'd be willing to sell+ postage, I'd be glad tosend you a money order so I can try those out.

Curious as to how much better they are than regular ball, and if I'd just be fine staying with round-ball, which is where I'm leaning to.

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I roll my own paper cartridges for an original 1863 percussion Sharps carbine. It's tedious, but necessary for this rifle. Personally, I'd rather watch paint dry than spend time making enough paper pistol cartridges for a match. It's far more time-consuming than the few minutes saved at the range. For some, that's part of the fun, it's just not for me.

 

I load my .44 Pietta Sherifs off the gun as the loading lever is too short to load on the gun. I used to use a cheater bar for leverage until I discovered it was bending the loading lever to where it wouldn't latch reliably.

 

Some folks like to buy and pre-load extra cylinders to save time at the range. It still takes time to load 'em at home it and takes even more time to clean 'em after the match. A nice gun could be bought for less than the cost of extra cylinders. 

 

Removing an empty cylinder, installing another and capping it on the clock for the second pistol string is a time-consuming and fumble-inducing endeavor. Kinda like using a single shot rifle or shotgun.  Bet you only do it once. Adding on, the average TO knows little of C&B peculiarities and probably would be very nervous watching you make the swap. If you attempt it, be sure they know what you're going to do ahead of time as they may ground your pistol, if they let you do it all.

 

I like to keep C&B as simple as possible. Others think a lot of fuss and minutia is fun, and I'm not being at all critical of that. Whatever floats your boat. That's one of the cool things about C&B, there's a hundred different ways to approach it. Every time I load my pistols for Frontiersman, I'm reminded of what a marvelous and remarkable invention the self-contained metallic cartridge is!

 

Have fun!

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I now shoot ROA's but also have 51 Navies in .44 Before the match I clear the nipples by popping off some caps only. For loading the cylinders I have found these to be a great help. I got them from Dixie Gun Works. They get the powder charge and then the balls seals the tube. I have a simple loading stand and pinch off the ball pour in the powder then I top it with a lubed wad from Circle Fly and seat the ball. I have the treso nipples on my Navies and Slix shot on the ROA's. If you are going to cast buy a 6 cavity mold that makes life easier I have two cavity molds too. Track of the Wolf carries the 6 cavity Lee mold for under $60.00

Have fun!!!!

 

Sgt H

 XA5210 Dixie Quick  Load  Target Tubes - .36 - .40 Caliber

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11 hours ago, Abilene Slim SASS 81783 said:

Some folks like to buy and pre-load extra cylinders to save time at the range. It still takes time to load 'em at home it and takes even more time to clean 'em after the match. A nice gun could be bought for less than the cost of extra cylinders. 

 

the light just went on. 

 

I was looking to add spare cylinders for my ‘60 army and have two spare. My rig was designed around the ‘51, ‘60 and ‘47 Walker with interchangeable strongside and crossdraw holtsters. In reality, I need at least 1 more ‘51 and as many as 2 more ‘60s. 

Depending what I choose to shoot that day, a spare could be had. 

 

Sounding boards are a great thing. 

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On ‎6‎/‎16‎/‎2019 at 11:32 AM, John E.B. Rawton said:

 

the light just went on. 

 

I was looking to add spare cylinders for my ‘60 army and have two spare. My rig was designed around the ‘51, ‘60 and ‘47 Walker with interchangeable strongside and crossdraw holtsters. In reality, I need at least 1 more ‘51 and as many as 2 more ‘60s. 

Depending what I choose to shoot that day, a spare could be had. 

 

Sounding boards are a great thing. 

 

NOW, you're on the right track,hoss! 

 

In my book, it's nearly unconscionable to not own a brace of your cap 'n ball revolvers model of choice!  They need their friends . . .

 

 

Keep your powder dry,

 

Wild Ben

 

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Let's do this right.  We all know, in those halcyon days of yesteryear, fighting men or women, did NOT reload. ^_^ Getcha killed trying to reload a percussion revolver inna middle of a fight. :wacko: Those violent folks that fought with pistols simply dumped the empty pistol and grabbed another. :)

 

ERGO, if we're gonna do it right, we need to show up with 12, yes, that's TWELVE 1860s, or 1851s (Rugers didn't exist). :mellow: At the conclusion of the stage, the empty pistols are cleared and then left in the gun cart.  Shooter simply pulls TWO more pistols, cylinders charged and takes those fresh guns to the loading table. :) Six stage match, 12 pistols.  Two day match, yer gonna be busy overnight :P  Time actually spent reloading percussion pistols during a match ...... ZERO :wub:

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6 minutes ago, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

 

Let's do this right.  We all know, in those halcyon days of yesteryear, fighting men or women, did NOT reload. ^_^ Getcha killed trying to reload a percussion revolver inna middle of a fight. :wacko: Those violent folks that fought with pistols simply dumped the empty pistol and grabbed another. :)

 

ERGO, if we're gonna do it right, we need to show up with 12, yes, that's TWELVE 1860s, or 1851s (Rugers didn't exist). :mellow: At the conclusion of the stage, the empty pistols are cleared and then left in the gun cart.  Shooter simply pulls TWO more pistols, cylinders charged and takes those fresh guns to the loading table. :) Six stage match, 12 pistols.  Two day match, yer gonna be busy overnight :P  Time actually spent reloading percussion pistols during a match ...... ZERO :wub:

 

I'm well on my way. 6 weeks ago I had 2 cap & ball pistols, now I have 8; I blame you and Dawg :P

Dang things breed in the safe...

 

On another note, local Ace Hardware is out of 5/64" drill bits; may have to go up to 3/32" 

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Just ordered me another 1860 last night. Which was by the way also my wedding anniversary. What a partner in crime I have. :)

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, Colorado Coffinmaker said:

 

Let's do this right.  We all know, in those halcyon days of yesteryear, fighting men or women, did NOT reload. ^_^ Getcha killed trying to reload a percussion revolver inna middle of a fight. :wacko: Those violent folks that fought with pistols simply dumped the empty pistol and grabbed another. :)

 

ERGO, if we're gonna do it right, we need to show up with 12, yes, that's TWELVE 1860s, or 1851s (Rugers didn't exist). :mellow: At the conclusion of the stage, the empty pistols are cleared and then left in the gun cart.  Shooter simply pulls TWO more pistols, cylinders charged and takes those fresh guns to the loading table. :) Six stage match, 12 pistols.  Two day match, yer gonna be busy overnight :P  Time actually spent reloading percussion pistols during a match ...... ZERO :wub:

 

NOW you're talking!  But why stop it there?  I say run them all dry on the SAME STAGE!  Let's do a partisan ranger fight scenario: four in your belt, two in pommel holsters, two more behind the cantle. . . gotta dump all the rounds into the targets!  And do this while on a mechanical bull to simulate a melee on horseback!

 

 

 . . . okay, that last bit might be too far. . . <_<

 

Tyrel is right - these things multiply!  Kinda like Gremlins: I received my first one from my grandfather when I was twelve.  I used hot water and ballistol to clean it, and now I have (let me do the math. . . ) sixteen of them. . . including four originals!

 

As they would say in a twelve step program, "I have a problem. . . "

 

 

Keep your powder dry,

 

Wild Ben

 

 

jw 2 (2).jpg

Edited by Wild Ben VanDorn

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Just my own experiences, as always, your mileage may vary...

Some of my favorite smokers were .36's.  One pair, Remington "1858"s with a 6-1/2" barrel were the ones I like best.

But, I was running into some difficulties.  Twice, at matches, I nailed a target, but the majority of the spotters were calling misses.  Both times, (different matches, different ROs), the ROs turned to me and said, "Yeah, you hit them dead center, but I can't over-rule the spotters."  So, I upped from ball to conicals for the heavier load, and louder "clang".  Then, conicals became scarce.  I don't cast my own... but now, they seem to be making a comeback, and I see new vendors with good bevel-based conicals.  I'm going to have to try some.

 

Anyway, I still use .36's (now I use 1851s) but only at local matches.  For big matches, I went to .44s, (1860s), and .45s, (ROAs).  I can miss enough on my own, without having inexperienced spotters adding to it.  Go for as big and loud a "clang" as you can.  "Dead" targets are still my nemesis.   

Sometimes, one misidentified miss is the difference between 1st and 3rd.  

 

Good luck and good shootin'!

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4 minutes ago, McCandless said:

I see new vendors with good bevel-based conicals.  

Any online? 

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Bisley Joe; If you aren't set up for casting just buy the balls. You can get .380 balls and the EPP-UG in 36 caliber from www.whyteleatherworks.com   You could try the EPP's and see if you like them. I shoot 1851's in 44. I just use balls, haven't found I miss any more than when I shoot my cartridge guns.  And I just put some of my BP lube over the balls, no wads. Just too cheap to buy or make wads and I already have the lube. Everybody tells me it doesn't go down the barrel and just sprays all over the front of the cylinder. Maybe, but I feel it keeps the front of the arbor lubed also. In any case, I can shoot 6 stages without any binding,  so I am OK with it. I did switch all 4 of mine to Treso nipples, as they were much more consistent in size then the originals.

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