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Author Topic: Richard is getting a LeMat  (Read 2080 times)

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #15 on: January 27, 2019, 09:49:18 AM »
Hi Dave, I am very happy to share my experience with the LeMat. Maybe it will help other LeMat owners. I measured the cylinder and 20gr barrel dimensions. I have seen many different references to the diameter of the shotgun barrel, but now know.

Cylinder chambers = 0.4465"
Shotgun barrel = 0.644"

That 0.595" Lee mold should work well for a solid ball with thick patch for the shotgun barrel. In case I need some other wadding, I ordered Tow:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Flax-tow-fiber-1-2-pound/233060362072?ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT&_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649

The LeMat is sure a handful, but balances nicely. One more thing I will need to do is deepen and widen the rear hammer sight for my old eyes.

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

Offline ShotgunDave

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #16 on: January 27, 2019, 09:54:04 AM »
I'll be interested to see how the shotgun barrel does with just one ball. I don't think I've ever see anyone shoot one that way. Seems everyone uses around nine .32 caliber balls. Look forward to the report.
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Offline ssb73q

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #17 on: January 28, 2019, 09:10:42 AM »
Hi, antiseize compound was put on all the LeMat nipple threads. The mating surfaces of the revolver lock up were fine filed and stoned to have a good firm hand fit. The cylinder/barrel gap is now 0.004". The hammer nose sight was dremel deepened and widened to present a good sight picture. Any part of the revolver that was stoned or had some white wear was cold blued. The LeMat is now ready for shooting. I can't wait for spring to have my steel targets singing again.

Back when my LeMat was new it sold for ~$450, now new LeMats are priced out of sight. If you ever come across a reasonably priced used LeMat, snap it up. The LeMat makes for a very fine addition to any BP replica collection.

My new wish now is for a reasonably priced Starr.

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

Offline Hawg

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #18 on: January 28, 2019, 05:28:44 PM »
Nice looking, ya done good! :-*
Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for thou art crunchy and tasteth good with ketchup.

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #19 on: January 30, 2019, 04:39:31 AM »
Hi, some musings on the LeMat cylinder lockup. The following photos show the back of the cylinder and LeMat bolt:






Notice the nine holes between the nipples, ~1/8" deep. The end of the bolt has a radius, the bolt diameter near the end of the bolt is 0.086". To determine the cylinder hole diameters I tried to insert different drills. A 0.086" would go into the holes, but a 0.088" drill would not enter the holes. This had me guess that the cylinder bolt holes are ~0.087".

Since the bolt diameter is smaller than the cylinder bolt holes, the bolt can completely enter the holes. The end of the bolt is radiused, the bolt fits like a pin in a socket. This is a very slick method of lockup, but has an issue. When the bolt drops, if it isn't perfectly aligned with the cylinder hole, it lightly peens the cylinder hole edge. This peened edge begins to narrow the cylinder holes. To again open the holes to the original size a reamer of 0.087" was purchased. The cylinder holes were then hand reamed. Based on how the reamer feels in the hole, I suspect that the actual hole diameter is closer to 0.0875". Is 0.0005" worth another $25 for the last 0.0005"? Probably not.

Since I now have a reamer, the holes will be optimized when the hole edges show peening. There seems to be a lot of latitude when adjusting when the bolt drops on hammer pull. Adjusting the small timing screw to have the bolt fall just as the cylinder bolt hole is aligned with the bolt will minimize peening since more of the hole edge takes the force of the bolt dropping. However, if performance timing is required (fast draw, etc.) the bolt should drop early accepting the added peening wear.

This is an example of trying to learn the engineering designed into our BP revolvers. I encourage others to also understand their revolver internal workings.

Regards,
Richard
« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 05:34:12 AM by ssb73q »
There’s nothing better in the morning than the smell of bacon and black powder smoke!

Offline Yolla Bolly Brad

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #20 on: January 30, 2019, 11:52:48 AM »
Hi Richard,
    A little chamfer on those holes will help keep them from being peened over and assist the bolt getting started into them when the action is cycled rapidly.

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #21 on: January 30, 2019, 07:44:11 PM »
Hi Brad, that's a good suggestion, thank you.

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

Offline ShotgunDave

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #22 on: January 30, 2019, 09:05:56 PM »
I learn things everyday here. You guys are awesome.
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Offline ssb73q

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #23 on: January 31, 2019, 05:33:21 AM »
Hi Richard,
    A little chamfer on those holes will help keep them from being peened over and assist the bolt getting started into them when the action is cycled rapidly.

Hi Brad, while not wanting to remove much metal, a chamfer is a good idea. A narrow tool that will miss the cylinder ratchets was found here:

https://www.mcmaster.com/27885a41

I ordered that countersink and also the 0.0875" reamer. Buying new tools is never a bad thing?  &\? &\?

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

Offline Yolla Bolly Brad

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #24 on: January 31, 2019, 01:19:08 PM »
Hi Richard,
    A little chamfer on those holes will help keep them from being peened over and assist the bolt getting started into them when the action is cycled rapidly.

Hi Brad, while not wanting to remove much metal, a chamfer is a good idea. A narrow tool that will miss the cylinder ratchets was found here:

https://www.mcmaster.com/27885a41

I ordered that countersink and also the 0.0875" reamer. Buying new tools is never a bad thing?  &\? &\?

Regards,
Richard
Richard,
           I love the McMaster company. They don't sell any junk and they ship FAST! I keep a copy of their catalog in my night stand like it was the bible ( just joking). It can be hard to get a current paper catalog but they can be found on Ebay.

Offline ssb73q

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #25 on: February 01, 2019, 04:14:46 AM »
Hi, I have seen parts drawings and references to where the shotgun barrel of the LeMat can be removed. The Bates book even talks about the shotgun barrel coming off the breach plug that is on the LeMat frame. As hard as I tried to remove the shotgun barrel by hand, it wouldn't give. The oil on the shotgun barrel was then degreased on the outside and the barrel put in a large soft jaw vise. Still, that 18yr old fouled in threads barrel wouldn't move. Kroil was then put on the thread area and allowed to sit a half hour. The Kroil did the trick, the barrel unscrewed.

Having the shotgun barrel easily removable simplifies cleaning that barrel after firing. It is also easy to get into the breach plug for cleaning.

Saw a reference where US Government tests reported that the LeMat was an improvement on the Colts.

Watched the movie Forsaken last night. There was a major role for the LeMat at the end of that movie. It was a hoot seeing a bad guy shot with the LeMat shotgun. The LeMat revolver also took some bad guys with ball.

The more I fondle the LeMat, the more I like it, it may now be my favorite BP revolver. However, it seems that my newest revolver is always best loved. Time will tell on what favored position the LeMat finally holds in my replica collection.

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: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #26 on: February 01, 2019, 01:30:10 PM »
Hi Brad, the McMaster countersink arrived today. Just a couple of seconds per hole with light finger pressure nicely broke the edges of the holes. Timing is still perfect and should remain that way for a long time. This was a great suggestion, thank you.

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: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #27 on: February 03, 2019, 08:10:21 AM »
Hi, the removal of the loading lever assembly from the LeMat leaves an ugly hole. The thread size was determined to be 12-28, not an easy thread size to find. I found both brass and steel 12-28 screws on eBay. However, the steel screw is a hex head while the brass is a slot. While I would have liked to use blued steel, that hex head is so not period correct that I decided to use the brass screw blackened. The brass screw had the head flattened a little in my minilathe and then cut to correct length. That screw was then blackened using Birchwood Casey Brass Black.

The LeMat with the screw installed:



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

Offline ShotgunDave

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #28 on: February 03, 2019, 01:47:43 PM »
That did the trick Richard. And it looks correct. Nicely done.
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Offline scooby

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Re: Richard is getting a LeMat
« Reply #29 on: February 03, 2019, 03:21:45 PM »
Richard, that Kroil is the best thing since sliced bread and bubble gum. I have removed more rusted nuts and bolts from antique farm implements than I can remember. I recently tore down and old Buffalo forge blower that had every nut and bot rusted tight using Kroil.

Outstanding representation of the LeMat revolver. You are going to have some fun with it.
« Last Edit: February 03, 2019, 05:02:43 PM by scooby »