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Old 07-16-2019, 02:15 AM
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A Modern Muzzle Loader



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A law change in 1997 which in effect prohibited the ownership of conventional cartridge pistols and revolvers in the UK, left us still able to own muzzle loading pistols and revolvers.

Whilst these gained a measure of popularity, many former pistol shooters didn't find them as user friendly, particularly the cleaning requirements.

Also black powder is classed as an explosive in the UK and requires a separate explosives licence to purchase and keep.

Over time the idea evolved of adapting muzzle loaders to use smokeless nitro powders, using replacement cylinders and ignition using conventional pistol primers and later shotgun primers.

Initially these conversions were made to exiting classic muzzle loading revolver designs such as reproduction Remingtons and Rogers & Spencer revolvers as well as adapting the Ruger Old Army.

Over time a UK based company thought why just adapt the traditional single actions, how about adapting a double action revolver. The main legal sticking point with this is it would be against our current legislation to convert a firearm that exists as a complete handgun, so it required negotiation with a manufacturer to supply part completed revolvers direct from the factory that had never been fully assembled.

Initially the Phillipines based Armscor company provided such items, latterly the Czech based Alfa Proj linked up with the UK company to provide part completed revolvers.

It is one of these latter I have recently acquired a used example of from a fellow club member:



As the revolver is provided into the UK without a cartridge cylinder, a special stainless steel muzzle loading cylinder is locally manufactured and fitted. To ensure that someone could not easily reverse convert to cartridge by acquiring a standard cylinder, the arbor diameter is different and the crane screw has been pinned to prevent removal.

To load the revolver the cylinder is swung out in the conventional manner and can then be slid off its arbor for loading on a special press assembly.





A series of pre-weighed powder charges are inserted into the chambers and a bullet added and pressed in using the loading press as above. Once all six chambers are loaded, the chambers are primed by placing shotgun primers in the recesses at the rear of the cylinder. The cylinder can then be replaced on the gun, closed and the revolver can be fired.

Spare cylinders are available but they aren't cheap and as part of UK law each such spare cylinders are considered as a firearm in their own right. I will look to acquire one spare cylinder at some point.

Here is a video of another UK shooter using one of these: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cu2HCXdoMiQ

Last edited by rockdrill; 07-16-2019 at 02:20 AM.
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Old 07-16-2019, 08:20 AM
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That's interesting Rockdrill thanks! Apparently the ignition hole in the primer pocket is small enough to keep powder from dribbling out before the primer is placed?

We got some new laws in Colorado in 2012, one of which restricts magazine capacity to 15 rounds. Existing high cap mags were grandfathered. It's kind of a joke because now many gun stores are selling high cap magazine kits...basically disassembled magazines in a plastic bag. It's a misdemeanor to assemble them but with no serialization or date codes that law is mostly ignored.

Cheers,

Frank
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Old 07-16-2019, 08:54 AM
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Hi Frank,

The flash hole is about the regular size you would find on a .357 Magnum case.

Due to this large grain flake powders are recommended for use in these, particularly Alliant Herco / Unique / Blue Dot and Green Dot to avoid unwanted leakage.

Regards
Dale
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Old 07-16-2019, 09:31 AM
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Impressive
Think Id be adding some wood scales to that loading rig handle, maybe some tiger-stripe maple?
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Old 07-16-2019, 09:38 AM
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The idea of adding some bulk to the press handle is definitely on my mind! I would prefer to press the bullets nicely into the chambers and not have a groove in my hand.
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Old 07-16-2019, 12:40 PM
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Thanks for sharing that, interesting. It shows what some ingenuity can do to work around certain anti-gun statutes. I have also seen an Italian 1873 Colt replica cap and ball available to meet European restrictions. At the same time, this illustrates how ridiculous some of the laws really are. Lots of people have met their end at the muzzle of black powder guns through time.
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Old 07-16-2019, 01:09 PM
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One of my favorites is the Remington New Army revolver.

It is too bad that some politicians think they have actually made people safer.

We are so lucky in this country, but our freedoms are not to far from extinction.

Stay vigilant.
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Old 07-16-2019, 04:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by M2HB View Post
One of my favorites is the Remington New Army revolver.
I crave one, can't decide on blue or stainless. I have a Ruger Old Army, but that 1858 is a charmer.
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Old 07-17-2019, 01:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 'ol shooter View Post
Thanks for sharing that, interesting. It shows what some ingenuity can do to work around certain anti-gun statutes. I have also seen an Italian 1873 Colt replica cap and ball available to meet European restrictions. At the same time, this illustrates how ridiculous some of the laws really are. Lots of people have met their end at the muzzle of black powder guns through time.
I prefer to look at this as developing something to comply with our law ,'work around' gives the impression that what has been done is somewhat less ethical, semantics perhaps.........

The Italian repro's are quite common in the UK, I have had several over the last 25 years, my out and out favourite being a copy of the 1851 Colt Navy.

European gun laws vary from country to country some being stricter than the UK, others less so.
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Old 07-17-2019, 08:10 AM
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Replacing the screw-in nipples with recesses for shotgun primers is a great idea. Being able to use smokeless powder is even better. I wonder how Trail Boss would work in one of these revolvers.

No more spent caps to jam the action.
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Old 07-17-2019, 09:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by toomanyguns View Post
Replacing the screw-in nipples with recesses for shotgun primers is a great idea. Being able to use smokeless powder is even better. I wonder how Trail Boss would work in one of these revolvers.

No more spent caps to jam the action.
You might find this interesting:

http://www.anvilconversions.co.uk/in.../Page13768.htm

http://www.anvilconversions.co.uk/in...es/Page600.htm

Several UK companies have offered nitro powder conversions to black powder muzzle loaders for a number of years now.
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Old 07-17-2019, 09:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rockdrill View Post
You might find this interesting:

http://www.anvilconversions.co.uk/in.../Page13768.htm

http://www.anvilconversions.co.uk/in...es/Page600.htm

Several UK companies have offered nitro powder conversions to black powder muzzle loaders for a number of years now.
Yes, interesting links.

Quote:
my out and out favourite being a copy of the 1851 Colt Navy
My favorite as well. IIRC, Wild Bill Hickok had a pair w/ ivory grips. He had a reputation for being very proficient with them.

Nice-looking revolver, BTW.
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Old 07-17-2019, 09:29 AM
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I guess now all you need is a holster to go all away around for about 6 guns and your good to go
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Old 07-17-2019, 10:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 'ol shooter View Post
I crave one, can't decide on blue or stainless. I have a Ruger Old Army, but that 1858 is a charmer.
I wish Remington would make second generation New Army percussion revolvers like Colt did. I donít think there would be a huge market, but if they could sell them in England these may be huge sellers. The Remington could use pre-loaded cylinders and change out the cylinders quickly.

Stainless would be nice.

I have the Ruger Old Army in stainless and it is a beast in strength, but it is nowhere near as elegant as an original Remington.
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Old 07-17-2019, 10:18 AM
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Good Lord, they seem to love to complicate things back there. Lucky my ancestors left in 1632.
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