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Author Topic: Itty-bitties  (Read 1793 times)

Offline ssb73q

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Itty-bitties
« on: December 01, 2015, 08:18:12 AM »
Hi, the itty-bitties are fun to shoot. No recoil, no muzzle blast, and cheap to shoot are some of the advantages. There are .32 S&W conversion cylinders for both the 1863 Remingtons and 1849 Colts. Since the .32 S&W projectile energy is less than a .22LR a small bullet trap allows shooting in the basement during the winter months. The short sight radius produces a nice challenge to learning to shoot accurately. My basement shooting toys:



Regards,
Richard
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Offline Captainkirk

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2015, 10:15:51 AM »
Nice collection of kittens, Richard!
"You gonna pull those pistols, or whistle Dixie?"

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2015, 11:15:40 AM »
Hi, kittens? When I turn them over and rub their undersides, I purr.  &\? &\? &\?

Regards,
Richard
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Offline mike116

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2015, 02:47:27 PM »
Nice little group there Richard.   I still haven't been able to bring myself to get one of the .31 cal revolvers.  I have an 1862 in .36 cal.   I still would like to have a Colt and a Remington in .31 cal.   Some people say they are useless.   I say if you can load it up and fire it,  it's far from useless.

Offline Dellbert

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2015, 03:36:16 PM »
Hi Richard. That is a nice little group of shooters you have there. I still have trouble spending money on one of the little guns.

Offline scooby

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2015, 11:05:11 PM »
Indeed, a very nice group of pocket modles that you possess right there Richard!!!!!!!!!!

I do not have the Remington pocket modle yet, but will down the road. I have one 1848 modle and three 1849 modles. I also have a Root modle. I embrace the pocket modles with full enthusiasm, as I do all of the other larger Colt revolvers.

Some may not know this fact, but the 1849 Colt modle was the most successful revolver of ol Sam's career. In 23 years, over 325,000 of them were sold in the U.S., with another 11,000 sold across the great pond in England. It succeded sales of the 1851 modle.

I agree with Mike in the fact that if you can load it and shoot it, it is not useless. No man would want to face one loaded with a full cylinder of black powder behind a .320 round ball. They are not useless if one wants to penetrate thin human skin at close distance. Hell fire, that is just what they were made for back in the day.

I own and shoot mine strictly for the historical significance. They help to fulfill the quest to emerse myself in the history of the Colt percussion revolver. Those that complain about the lack of power are applying modern mindset.

To complete my quest, I hope to convert a Colt down the road, as you have done, to fire the 32 S & W round. And I won't hesitate to do the same with an 1863 Remington Pocket.

You have done some damn fine work with your pocket modles, that by all means, should influence others to do likely. I have enjoyed reading about your endeavors with the pocket modles, and you have definately influenced me to continue the experience.

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #6 on: December 02, 2015, 04:19:40 AM »
Hi Mike, these itty-bitties shoot better than most people understand. I got the steel frame 1863 Remington a little over one year ago and tested it in my basement. Not wanting to wait for the snow to go away before testing my 1863 Remington Pocket fitted with the new Howell 32 S&W conversion cylinder, I tested it in my basement using a .22 bullet stop. I fired 5 shots using 32 S&W handloaded with 78gr Laser Cast bullets with 1.5gr of Trailboss powder from 7 yards. I didn't take effort trying for accuracy. Here is the proof of the pudding, an ~1-1/4" group:



The Colts are even more accurate. Ignore the shot in the 8 ring, it was my first shot and then I aimed higher:



Back in the day, any abdominal puncture was a death sentence. I shot a very thick telephone book with both a .22LR from a rifle and .32 S&W. The .32 S&W has less energy than the .22, but penetrated more that the .22 and went 2" deep into that thick phone book. I wouldn't want to be shot with a .32 S&W.

Currently the problem using .32 S&W is getting ammo and brass for handloading.

Regards,
Richard
There’s nothing better in the morning than the smell of bacon and black powder smoke!

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #7 on: December 02, 2015, 04:45:17 AM »
Hi scooby, some time ago I purchased the book, "Colts Pocket '49 - its Evolution" by Robert M. Jordan and Darrow M. Watt from a fellow forum member. One's head will spin with all the variations of the 1849 Colt. It would be a monumental exercise just to own a few of the different versions. Thank goodness for the replicas. Shooting the old handgun design replicas is like being transported back in time. I don't need power for shooting pleasure. When I want to go hot, I go modern.

IMO shooting and enjoying the itty-bitties is simply one refinement of our BP shooting hobby. There is something magical about these small revolvers, once in the hand they are difficult to put down.

Regards,
Richard
There’s nothing better in the morning than the smell of bacon and black powder smoke!

Offline mike116

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #8 on: December 02, 2015, 04:52:37 AM »
Richard,   I am going to own one but need to get the ammo thing figured out.    I know you bought 32 S&W cartridges and cut them down to 32 short dimensions.   How did you shorten the cases?   Also do you use 32 S&W dies for both the short and long cases or do have separate loading dies?    Right now my interest lies in loading some 32 S&W short cartridges for a couple break top revolvers I have.   If I get the loading figured out for those I will be more inclined to convert a Colt pocket model.

If you have posted all this info elsewhere just show me the link.  Thanks

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #9 on: December 02, 2015, 05:49:59 AM »
Hi Mike, it is 32 S&W Long brass that I cut down. I use my minilathe that speeds up shortening the brass, but the 32 S&W Lee case length gauge and cutter can be used in a drill press, if you can find the 32 S&W gauge.  A little research suggests that Lee may have stopped making the 32 S&W gauge. Maybe you can grind down a 32 ACP cutter gauge? Best is if you can find some 32 S&W brass. However, I have had some 32 S&W brass on backorder for over a year now.

You can buy the Lee 32 S&W die set here:
http://www.midwayusa.com/product/832053/lee-carbide-3-die-set-32-s-and-w

I looked at my 32 S&W die setup for my Lee turret press and have the Lee 32 S&W decapper and sizing die, Lee 32 S&W powder die, Lee 32 ACP bullet seating die, and Lee 32 ACP crimp die in order. I don't remember the rational for using the 32 ACP dies, but I must have had a good reason.

IMO get the 32 S&W die set before it also becomes extinct.

I load 1.7gr TrailBoss powder with a 78gr Laser Cast bullet for my 32 S&W.

Check this thread:
http://blackpowdersmoke.com/colt/index.php?topic=439.0

Regards,
Richard
« Last Edit: December 02, 2015, 05:51:58 AM by ssb73q »
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Offline mike116

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #10 on: December 02, 2015, 06:52:51 AM »
Thanks Richard.  I may have the 32 case length gauge and cutter.   I was wondering if that might work since I don't have a lathe.    I can find 32 long brass but not 32 short.   I'll check around.  If I ever get any lead for casting I'll probably just cast soft bullets for the top breaks for now.   Lee 32 S&W dies are still available from several sources.

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #11 on: December 05, 2015, 09:31:03 AM »
Thanks Richard.  I may have the 32 case length gauge and cutter.   I was wondering if that might work since I don't have a lathe.    I can find 32 long brass but not 32 short.   I'll check around.  If I ever get any lead for casting I'll probably just cast soft bullets for the top breaks for now.   Lee 32 S&W dies are still available from several sources.

Hi Mike, while I was digging through my reloading stuff today I found a misplaced 100rd new bag of 32 S&W brass. If you get hung up cutting 32 S&W Long brass, PM me your address and I will send you that bag of brass at no charge. I still have 300rds of 32 S&W brass backordered coming from Cabelas since a year ago. I still have lots of new 32 S&W Long brass as a backup.

Regards,
Richard
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Offline mike116

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #12 on: December 05, 2015, 01:36:53 PM »
Richard,    That's a very nice thing to offer.  Can't tell you how much I appreciate it.   I won't take you up on it right now as I have a lot of irons in the fire and the cases would just sit here for a while.   However I might be inclined to redeem the offer on the future.   I have rounded up some of the things I need but with the leather orders and casting and reloading I won't be delving into the 32 S&W project until after the holidays. 

Offline sourdough

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #13 on: December 28, 2015, 03:25:43 PM »
Hi scooby, some time ago I purchased the book, "Colts Pocket '49 - its Evolution" by Robert M. Jordan and Darrow M. Watt from a fellow forum member. One's head will spin with all the variations of the 1849 Colt. It would be a monumental exercise just to own a few of the different versions. Thank goodness for the replicas. Shooting the old handgun design replicas is like being transported back in time. I don't need power for shooting pleasure. When I want to go hot, I go modern.

IMO shooting and enjoying the itty-bitties is simply one refinement of our BP shooting hobby. There is something magical about these small revolvers, once in the hand they are difficult to put down.

Regards,
Richard

Sorry to be nosy, but since you have the Jordan/Watt book, do you also have the P. L. Shumaker book on the same subject? I so much want the Jordan/Watt to compare, but IMO the price is pretty much through the roof for now at $130 for me. My wife had a come-apart when I got Nathan L. Swayze's " '51 Colt Navies" for less than $80.

I guess I just have to ruck up and save for it. Sigh...

Jim

Offline Captainkirk

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Re: Itty-bitties
« Reply #14 on: December 28, 2015, 05:54:56 PM »
Hi scooby, some time ago I purchased the book, "Colts Pocket '49 - its Evolution" by Robert M. Jordan and Darrow M. Watt from a fellow forum member. One's head will spin with all the variations of the 1849 Colt. It would be a monumental exercise just to own a few of the different versions. Thank goodness for the replicas. Shooting the old handgun design replicas is like being transported back in time. I don't need power for shooting pleasure. When I want to go hot, I go modern.

IMO shooting and enjoying the itty-bitties is simply one refinement of our BP shooting hobby. There is something magical about these small revolvers, once in the hand they are difficult to put down.

Regards,
Richard

Sorry to be nosy, but since you have the Jordan/Watt book, do you also have the P. L. Shumaker book on the same subject? I so much want the Jordan/Watt to compare, but IMO the price is pretty much through the roof for now at $130 for me. My wife had a come-apart when I got Nathan L. Swayze's " '51 Colt Navies" for less than $80.

I guess I just have to ruck up and save for it. Sigh...

Jim
Jim;  have you searched Amazon for a used copy of your book? Many times there are used copies in VGC for pennies on the dollar. Just a thought.
Could it be this one?

http://www.amazon.com/Colts-variations-pocket-pistol-1848-1872/dp/B0007FIKLE/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1451354019&sr=1-1-fkmr0&keywords=colt+pocket+revolvers+p.l.+schumaker
"You gonna pull those pistols, or whistle Dixie?"