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Colt Revolvers => 1873 SAA Colts => Topic started by: pitfighter on June 26, 2018, 06:42:45 PM

Title: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: pitfighter on June 26, 2018, 06:42:45 PM
Hello,

I do not normally care too much for restorations - if you've happened across the half dozen or so other Colt's I posted pictures of from my collection, you'll appreciate that I love patina and scars, period-fixes, etc., but this one yelled my name.

It's an 1884 Colt on a black powder frame - note lack of quick release on the cylinder pin - smaller grip size.
It came with the Colt paperwork, and provenance on the original owner - named in the Colt history letter.

As far as I am aware, the restoration from the "original firearm" began on an unserviceable collection of beat-up parts, with many components beyond help. 
This one was effectively brought back from the dead, the barrel is a replacement.
The action is crisp like a brand-new-gun, beautiful sounding elements and timing like glass.

I am still enamored of it, but I am thinking I may shoot the Hell out of it, and allow it to create it's own patina, the restoration was by danthegunman.com (and is fine work) but not a five figure museum grade deal.
 - What do the six-gunners here think about that?  Sacrilege, or have at it!!!!

PS. I won't shoot smokeless powder in the old Colt or any other black powder gun.  I wouldn't even use artifical black ... only true black, and a good grade, too .... and then only light to medium loads of the stuff.  This cylinder is likely wrought iron, and not steel, not that the steel was even proofed for smokeless until after the turn of the century.
https://www.buffaloarms.com/45-colt-200-grain-rnfp-reduced-recoil-black-powder-ammo-box-of-50-amogx45lcrr

(https://i.imgur.com/afSzSaRl.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/iUALABFl.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/ZGrantll.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/lLFmI95l.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/hpzyPSRl.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/FD8K7r2l.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/yD2OYu0l.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/fvgZyabl.jpg)

(https://i.imgur.com/7i07c0rl.jpg)
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: mike116 on June 26, 2018, 07:53:35 PM
Nothing wrong with restoring an old Colt back to shootable condition.   Go ahead and "shoot the Hell out of it".

I think it looks much better as a complete workable gun rather than a pile of rusted parts.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: Yolla Bolly Brad on June 26, 2018, 08:07:24 PM
I like it the way it is, nice and shiney looking. I like old stuff that is in new condition. I have a butchered Bisley that I'm going to restore.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: pitfighter on June 26, 2018, 10:06:29 PM
Thank you, gents,

Honestly there is a part of me that feels it is almost a waste not to shoot such firearm.
It's what it was designed for, was restored to do, and earned a legendary reputation for.

I have had guns you couldn't shoot for fear of breaking them, matching small parts etc.,

This is a Colt .45 with Cowboy action loads it's going to do just fine, and I rather think it should be shot.

I appreciate your input - nothing will happen for a few months anyway, on a job in the UK.
(Yes, will be searching for blackpowder arms there, too - they are allowed them and they're comparatively priced to the US.)
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: ssb73q on June 27, 2018, 07:29:24 AM
Hi pit, that's one beautiful looking Colt. If it shoots as good as it looks, it will be one great gun.

I look forward to your shooting report.

Regards,
Richard
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: Dellbert on June 27, 2018, 08:59:02 PM
Pretty Colt I like it.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: pitfighter on June 27, 2018, 10:52:03 PM
I look forward to your shooting report.

Thanks!
I will probably only smoke one box of low-recoil BP loads, or so -
After a few days of researching these pre-1904 frames, I have to say, I probably won't shoot a whole lot through it.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: LonesomePigeon on June 29, 2018, 08:29:29 PM
No reason not to shoot a refinished gun unless it's not safe.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: drobs on June 30, 2018, 10:45:08 AM
Real nice looking gun.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: pitfighter on July 01, 2018, 12:41:24 AM
Thank you, gents!

Will photograph and video the event for sure.


Pit.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: Mad Dog Stafford on July 01, 2018, 06:30:49 AM
I like those grips.  L@.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: mazo kid on July 03, 2018, 02:29:55 PM
I like it also, nothing wrong with making a good serviceable gun out of a beat up one. Probably even enhanced the value.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: LonesomePigeon on July 06, 2018, 07:47:25 AM
It looks like the cylinder might be a replacement too. I believe an original cylinder for a "black powder" frame would have more prominent beveling. I still would not shoot smokeless out of it. I like it, it looks real good.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: Electric Miner on July 09, 2018, 07:08:24 AM
Very nice!
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: scooby on July 09, 2018, 02:43:21 PM
Damn nice shooter!!!!! I would be proud to have one like it.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: pitfighter on July 17, 2018, 09:01:53 AM
Thanks Gents - as I wrote, always skeptical of "restored" Colt's - but I was assured this one was unserviceable and a save, rather than a restoration.



Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: Captainkirk on July 17, 2018, 09:57:27 AM
Gotta love those saves, PF. Far better than a mercy killing IMHO.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: bigted on July 17, 2018, 05:58:21 PM
I always shoot my collectables. Prolly shouldn't but ... i really like the feel and history that eminates  from them while shooting them.

Shoot her, she was built and then rebuilt to be a tool.

I also think the cylinder is a replacement but im bettin the original was too poraouse to be safe. The frame looks pretty good and i betcha she will still beltch smoke and sparks just like it was intended to do.

Do keep us in the loop as i for one would like to see soot on the very nice finish.
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: Captainkirk on July 18, 2018, 12:14:55 PM
How many guys die with unfired, collectible rare firearms in their collections only to have them go to the nephew who shoots them and doesn't clean them...ever?
Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: pitfighter on August 01, 2018, 03:06:21 AM
Yes, indeed.

With this revolver, being a blackpowder frame pre-proof, pre-metal treatment - the question of firing really is two pronged.

1. Should you fire a refinished Colt?  The answer for me is yes, it's a sub $2K firearm, it's not as rare as an original finish, essentially it could be refinished again and again and not depreciate any more, as the harm has been done.

2. Is it safe to fire?  A little research led to a lot of research, and these BP frames self-destruct, and not occasionally, they appear to be one of the most destroyed frames by self-destruction - the internet has dozens of pictures off ruptured cylinders, split and burst frames.  They existed in a time when knowledge was still being amassed at a slower rate than cartridges were being advanced, people shot smokeless .45 through these and nothing happened....   Until it happened, and blew their revolver up.
It happened a lot, and was a problem -

I will fire this revolver, but with pure black-powder, low recoil loads, with a lighter projectile.

I am pretty positive it will be a wonderful experience, I'll film and photograph the hell out of it, and it will be tucked safely away in the safe after cleaning.

Thanks for the encouragement, and inspiration!

Pit.

Title: Re: Colt .45 SAA on a Black Powder frame 1884
Post by: bigted on October 09, 2018, 03:11:24 AM
Been awhile. Just perusing thru and re found this.

Did she shoot?

Light load i like is 28 grains Old E 2Fg powder, Lee 200 grain bullet, SPG lube, sparked by FED large pistol prime and housed in a Remington case. My second gen 7.5 inch loves these and shoots to point of aim in nice small groups. She still hits with some authority and plenty power to knock over the round plates on a rocker target.

Anyway just curious is all.