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Old 06-10-2017, 04:16 PM
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SAA "Cowboy" Rimfire Conversions



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Discussion of SAA "Cowboy" rimfire revolvers (http://www.rimfirecentral.com/forums...d.php?t=869009) got me thinking. I have a Pietta brass-frame clone of a Colt 1851, in .44 caliber. But ... I shoot at an older indoor range with a marginal ventilation system. House rules: NO black powder allowed.

It would be fun to be able to take the 1851 over to the range once in awhile and plink away. I see that Kirst Konverters has a kit to adapt the 1851 to .22 rimfire. Has anyone used one of these conversions? Do they work? Are they worth the money? One nice feature is that, once installed, it isn't necessary to disassemble the gun to reload, and apparently it also isn't necessary to modify the capping recess to make it into a loading gate.

http://www.kirstkonverter.com/22-cal...sion-kits.html

Is there anything to watch out for with these conversions? (Pardon me -- "konversions")
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  #2  
Old 06-12-2017, 08:50 AM
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Interesting conversions. Like most conversions, a little on the pricey side.

I did not know of these until you posted, and obviously have no experience with them, but I can visualize one potential problem with the barrel insert not lining up with the sights.

If I had a .44 cap and ball revolver, I think that I would be more inclined to get one of the .44 special conversions. I have a couple of .36 cap and ball revolvers, but the .38 Spcl. conversions for the .36's don't work as well as the .44's because of the smaller .38 Spcl. bullet.

OTOH the .22 conversion might be as accurate as shooting a .358 bullet in a .375 barrel.

Quite a few years ago someone made a single-shot .22 pistol that looked like an 1851.
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Old 06-12-2017, 02:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toomanyguns View Post
If I had a .44 cap and ball revolver, I think that I would be more inclined to get one of the .44 special conversions. I have a couple of .36 cap and ball revolvers, but the .38 Spcl. conversions for the .36's don't work as well as the .44's because of the smaller .38 Spcl. bullet.
.44 black powder converts to .45 Colt (or .45 Schofield), not .44 Special. However, the centerfire cartridge conversions are not recommended for clones with brass frames ... and my 1851 has a brass frame.

Last edited by Hawkmoon; 06-13-2017 at 09:08 PM. Reason: edited for clarity
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  #4  
Old 06-12-2017, 05:08 PM
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That's pretty cool I have an 1858 target with adjustable sights that this would be perfect for. But I think the conversion is almost twice the cost of what I bought the gun for. Definitely cool though
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Old 06-15-2017, 07:09 PM
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i got one of the 1858 conversions.

not sure about the working of it since no gun for it, yet. Been looking for a gun, but its not #1 priority.

they are spendy somewhat, but i think they are too cool. Also, going to look at a CF conversion too.
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Old 06-15-2017, 07:26 PM
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Several threads in the conversion section. Couldn't find it now, but one poster made a full length 22 liner for his 1858.
http://1858remington.com/discuss/index.php
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Old 06-15-2017, 07:31 PM
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First if you look again, the kits are for 36 caliber '51's.

Second, after converting you'll find that great handling pistol just became a brick. They gain so much weight in the process it's disappointing. I still use mine anyway, but dang is it heavy. I much prefer my .38 S&W converted '51, though ammo availability is a drag.

I converted my brass framed '51 to .22 myself 7 or 8 years ago.

The .38 was a kit I bought, One of the back of the magazine small adds kinda kit.
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Old 06-16-2017, 12:49 AM
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First if you look again, the kits are for 36 caliber '51's.
Third bullet point -- " 1851 Navy 'Confederate' and 'U.S. Marshal" .44 caliber.

Also, the 1860 conversions will also fit the 1851s.
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Old 06-16-2017, 12:52 AM
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Originally Posted by bangbang View Post
i got one of the 1858 conversions.

...

Also, going to look at a CF conversion too.
I've had both the Kirst and Howell centerfire conversions for the 1858. Both are good. The major difference is that the Kirst allows opening up the capping recess on the frame to make a functional loading gate. The Howell conversion has to be removed from the gun and the back plate taken off to reload.
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Old 06-17-2017, 12:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Hawkmoon View Post
Third bullet point -- " 1851 Navy 'Confederate' and 'U.S. Marshal" .44 caliber.

Also, the 1860 conversions will also fit the 1851s.
That's fantastic. I didn't bother to look at the '60 kits as this thread is about '51s. I only have '51s so there it is. No reason for this thread to die due to lack of research. It's my bad on that.

I made my own conversion in my own time with whatever it was I had on hand. It's okay. kinda fun, really cool, but heavy as an Uzi(not really, but you get the idea).

Let's keep the info rolling so the OP can make his pistol come true. That's why we're here afterall.

I'll see if I can find the old pics of making mine. Most of them are on photobucket and as most of you know photobucket sucks these days, so I'll have to figure out something else.
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  #11  
Old 06-17-2017, 05:34 PM
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I'd love to convert my 1858 target to a .22lr with a full lined barrel and new cylinder. No idea how to do or how much it would be
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Old 06-18-2017, 09:52 PM
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I just had a really dumb idea. (I specialize in those.)

Centerfire conversion cylinder. And Sportsmans Guide Company sells (or used to sell) chamber inserts, to convert centerfire firearms to .22 rimfire. I wonder what would happen if one were to double up on the conversions like that?
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  #13  
Old 06-18-2017, 10:10 PM
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Originally Posted by satchel22 View Post
I'd love to convert my 1858 target to a .22lr with a full lined barrel.
Numrich used to sell barrel blanks -- probably still do. Get a hunk of .22 barrel that was chopped off something, turn it down in a lathe, and stick it in. Brownells claims that their Acra-Glas epoxy system will stand up to the job of relining barrels. They also sell barrel liners for .22, but I don't know what the OD is.
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Old 06-18-2017, 11:31 PM
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Yeah the barrel seems like the easy part. Just unsure of how to do the cylinder. I saw a picture of a conversion that had a smaller (front to back) cylinder and a barrel that inserted from the front and screwed into a block that took up the rest of the space in front of the cylinder. It seems like it was popular back when original cap and ball revolvers were cheap and plentiful.
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  #15  
Old 06-19-2017, 12:52 PM
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At the very least I can take mine apart and show some more pics. If I can find the in process pics I'll post those up. Photobucket sucks so bad these days that I don't even go there anymore, though I know that's where I hosted those pics before.
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