Jump to content
SASS Wire Forum

Is Pedersoli still making Lightnings?


Recommended Posts

Call Taylor’s and Company and see what they say. I see there is only 1 on their website now, Navy Arms has a few. I’ve heard the Italian gun makers aren’t making much of anything right now because of covid-19. Nearly every  Lightning I’ve bought has been here on the classifieds.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Pedersoli IS still making Lightning rifles. About four months ago, the company realized that it was producing too many Lightning model variations and decided to streamline the Lightning line. Not sure when the new model listings will be posted.

 

RR

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I have just learned that the Pedersoli web site is being revised and some of the products have been accidentally removed from the current site. The new site should be up within the next several days.

RR

  • Thanks 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Ah, there they are.   Funny, I noticed two differences from my Colt/AWA's almost right away.   The first was the screws at either end of the horizontal bit of metal near the top rear of the frame.  Mine only have one screw at the front of it.   The second was vertical bit of metal sticking out behind the loading gate seemed to be a little was farther back than they are on mine.

I wonder what the changes do.

Edited by H. K. Uriah, SASS #74619
Link to post
Share on other sites

The "horizontal bit of metal" is the cartridge guide/ejection plates - there's one on each side of the rifle (they secure the round in place when the lifter comes up and act as ejection tabs when the bolt is pulled open). Pedersoli is the only one that uses a screw to secure both ends of the cartridge guide/ejection plates (i.e., two screws). Uberti, Taurus, AWA, and the original Colt only had one screw (the other end of the plate was secured in place by a notch in the plates). As to the vertical bit of metal on the right side of the receiver, I think you're referring to the loading gate's hinge.

 

Aside from some versions having a dust cover attached to the bolt, all versions of the Lightning rifle look "similar'' on the outside, but are very different on the inside with the Pedersoli version being more radically different from the other versions.

RR

Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, Larsen E. Pettifogger, SASS #32933 said:

 

.357 and .44-40

 

 

DSC_0001.jpeg

Yup, would probably go .45 Colt or .44-40. PS , you are a cruel, cruel man...wanna trade me that .44-40 for a Tommy gun?

Link to post
Share on other sites

H.K. Uriah ..  I do know that Pedersoli's lead gunsmith worked diligently to redesign the mechanical aspects of their version of the Lightning to make their version perform better and stand out from the rest. And this is the case with many of the other internal parts of the Pedersoli Lightning. 

 

The single-screw version doesn't secure the plate as well as the double-screw version does. I have worked a few Lightnings with single-screw plates, where tightening the one screw did hold that end of the plate in place but you could still move the "V" end slightly in and out of the receiver. So I assume Pedersoli's gunsmith felt that two screws would ensure the cartridge guide/ejection plates would stay locked in place better than the single-screw version.

 

In the single-screw version - the upper plate in the photo below - the plate is held in place by one screw (at the right end) that presses the right end of the plate into the receiver, with the left end of the plate being secured by its V-shaped notch. This is an iffy fit at best, and is what was used on the original Colt, AWA, Taurus, and Uberti versions. The lower plate in the photo is the Pedersoli version with a screw at each end to anchor the plate - and I believe to be a more secure fit.

RR

 

Cartridge guides - orig and peder sm.jpg

Edited by Roger Rapid
re-worded
Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, Roger, that actually makes sense, even if it is a bit complex.  :)

 

Gosh, Larsen, if ever I meet you face to face, I'll have to let you hear my Mickey Mouse impression.   I am told it is very good.  Sounds more like Walt that Wayne.

 


And I don't get all the hate for the AWA Lightnings.   Mine in .45 remains the only gun I've ever shot a clean match with.  (All three of them.)  Neither it nor the .44-40 has ever given me any problems that were not caused by operator error.     Maybe I just got lucky and got good ones?  

Edited by H. K. Uriah, SASS #74619
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Buckshot Bob... great question!

 

From a fit-and-finish standpoint, I think that Uberti and Pedersoli are heads and shoulders above Taurus, and AWA. From a function standpoint, the Uberti version has too many internal safeties (as Uberti does with their current SAAs), and the slide on the Uberti version can be pulled open without the hammer being released (which means you're always pushing forward on the slide when the action is closed rather than pulling back on it (on the Pedersoli version, you can pull back on the slide, and the instant the hammer is released the action will open to eject the round). From a reliability standpoint - IMHO, I think the Pedersoli leads the pack. I own several Lightnings - a few of each make and model - and my match gun is a Pedersoli Lightning 26" octagonal barrel (for weight and stability) in .45LC and - knock wood - I NEVER have a jam or action problem.


RR

  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Pedersoli

 

 

Uberti

 

AWA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Taurus

 

 

(USFA???  High quality machining but often do not work.  Have two, neither has worked well.)

 

My main match rifle is a modified 20" short rifle Uberti that eliminates all the junk Roger mentions.  It is lighter than a similar Pedersoli and for me balances better.  For me I like the fact that the slide does not lock.  Each person has to develop a rhythm based on the model of Lightning being used.  This is also pretty much a moot point as Pedersoli is the only one still making Lightnings.

Edited by Larsen E. Pettifogger, SASS #32933
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

When I was first in the market to get a Lighting, just because I wanted to have one, I was able to compare an AWA, Taurus and a Beretta, which I believe was made by Uberti.


The Taurus had an action that felt like rubbing two pieces of sandpaper against each other.   (The general consensus here is that the Taurus makes for a fine tomato stake, but not a good gun.)

The Beretta was much smoother, but it felt very "clunky" to me somehow.   

The AWA was smooth and tight.   It felt like I thought a gun should feel as I worked the action.   So, I bought the AWA.  To my shock it soon became my favorite main match rifle, is the only one I ever have shot a clean match with, and it infected me with the "Lightning Bug."

 

I liked my .45 AWA so much that I said if I ever found one in .44-40 that I would get one of those as well.   I eventually did.  In truth, it's chamber was a bit tight and unless the round was absolutely perfect in its specs, it would not chamber.   So, I had the chamber polished, and it has never given me any problems since.   It also had a spacer in the magazine that limited capacity to 10 rounds and made loading rounds 8, 9, and 10 a bear.   Took it out and that problem also went away.

 

Since then, I have obtained two real Colts, one in .32-20, and one in .44-40.   The .32 is a sweet gun, and the .44 is Costa Rican Army surplus that I need to find a bayonet for.   Not too long after that, I got a Colt .22 Long, and most recently, a Large Frame Colt in .45-85, a variant of .45-70.   Oh, I also have one of those exceedingly rare AWA Lightning Bolt pistols.   Super fun things to shoot.

Anyway, in my experience, AWA's a good.  Colts are good.  Taurus and Beretta had issues that made me not want to consider them further.  I have not handled any of the others.

Consensus here is that Pedersolis are good.   The AWA, like the Colt, will slam fire, but I understand the Pedersoli will not.    Colt of course no longer makes them.   Nor does Taurus.   AWA is gone.  So is USFA.  Don't know what Uberti/Beretta is doing.   Pedersoli is still being made.   So unless you wanna go used, Pedersoli is the way to go.   

Edited by H. K. Uriah, SASS #74619
Link to post
Share on other sites

 

We really need to have a side match that requires the use of a Lightning.   And you have to use something other than a Colt or Ruger.  Or better yet, a category!   (Ducking for cover as I hope people know I am joking.)

 

 

Still, a whole posse of Lightning shooters would be fun...

Link to post
Share on other sites

H.K.U - count me in on the Lighting Side Match !!!!!!!  :)

RR

Link to post
Share on other sites
25 minutes ago, Roger Rapid said:

H.K.U - count me in on the Lighting Side Match !!!!!!!  :)

RR

 

Hmmm....

Rifle:  Medium Frame Colt Lighting or reproduction thereof.

Shotgun:  Winchester 87 or reproduction thereof.

Pistols:  Something that is not a Colt SAA/Clone or Ruger.  This last one could be option.

 

Call it, "Doing things differently."

Link to post
Share on other sites

How about a Pedersoli Side Match: Pedersoli Lightning, Pedersoli "Doc Holliday" pistol, and Pedersoli "Wyatt Earp" shotgun?

 

RR

Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Roger Rapid said:

How about a Pedersoli Side Match: Pedersoli Lightning, Pedersoli "Doc Holliday" pistol, and Pedersoli "Wyatt Earp" shotgun?

 

RR

 

Since it's a side match, the Howdah could be substituted for the shotgun. :)

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, Larsen E. Pettifogger, SASS #32933 said:

(USFA???  High quality machining but often do not work.  Have two, neither has worked well.)

 

I have one of the last Lightnings produced by USFA in 44-40. It took some tweaking over a couple of years but it has been running very reliably for the past 12 years or so.

 

IIRC correctly, the main problem was with the cartridge stop. I built it up and reshaped it to more closely match the original Colt drawings and also shortened the magazine spring a little. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ive got the pedersoli lightning.A pair of thunderers & a colt 78 colt replica.Will that work Roger?

 

                                                                                                                                                                         Largo

Link to post
Share on other sites

Largo Casey... As long as it shoots and I can be at a match with my pards, even a water pistol is okay! Of course, it should be a Pedersoli Lightning water pistol - errr aaah... Just sayin'

RR

Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, Roger Rapid said:

Largo Casey... As long as it shoots and I can be at a match with my pards, even a water pistol is okay! Of course, it should be a Pedersoli Lightning water pistol - errr aaah... Just sayin'

RR

 

What about these?

RidiculousA.thumb.JPG.9fbd46f5956e7d20a2aac75625cfba02.JPG

 

Boy, this has taken a turn for the silly...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Marshall Dillon...

The good news is that unlike a '73 where the cartridge OAL needs to be reasonably close to the length of the elevator to keep the next round in the magazine, the Lightning features a cartridge stop lever that releases each cartridge onto the lifter and prevents the subsequent round from entering the action - regardless of the cartridge's length. As such, the Lightning is not super sensitive to cartridge OAL so, it will shoot cartridges that are shorter than the .45LC OAL (1.60˝) - like !.50˝ or so. But to run efficiently, the cartridge needs to move all the way back against the bolt so that it can get locked between the lifter and the cartridge guides/ejection plates until the bolt pushes it into the action. Also, the rim thickness of the Schofield is .010˝ thicker than the .45LC, so you might find the Schofield cartridges to run better in some Lightnings than in others - for example in a Taurus where the poorer machining and fit of parts allows for a bit more tolerance. Schofield rounds have a 1.430˝ OAL and if you run the rifle slowly they will shoot in the Lightning but I can't imagine them being ideal for working the rifle at the speeds needed for CAS.

RR

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

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