Colt Walker- SHOCK & AWE!


Yankee John
April 23, 2006, 10:06 AM
I finally got to do some shooting at my dad's farm yesterday. Shoot my Uberti Remington Revolving Rifle and ASM Colt Walker for the first time!

I was using my paper cartridges for the Remington carbine, 30 gr. Pyrodex with .454 balls. What a blast this carbine is; Lots of fire and smoke, and it bucks pretty good (especially with that solid brass plate on the buttstock!).

All I can say about the Walker is- SHOCK & AWE - Smoke and fire to the max!! I cannot believe how brutally powerful it is! I was using 50 gr. of Pyrodex with a .457 ball. The loading lever dropped everytime, but I will fix that.

I love all of my guns, but "Mr. Walker" is my favorite now!


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April 23, 2006, 10:35 AM
"BIG Grin" BP is fun, isn't it? :)

April 23, 2006, 12:10 PM
I remember the first time I pulled the trigger on "full cylinder":eek: in my Walker replica...It's been quite a few years now, but I vividly recall the gun standing almost sraight up! All of a sudden, I felt like Jose Wales:scrutiny: (hope I spelled that one correctly) Was the Walker not the undisputed magnum until the 357 was introduced?

April 23, 2006, 02:01 PM
The Walker if loaded to the max exceeds the .357 mag.
It comes very close to the .44 mag.
it's just fun to play with.


April 23, 2006, 05:57 PM
I used to have a Signature Colt Walker. That thing was serious fun to shoot!

At over 4 pounds it was easy to shoot and as much fun as you can have with a big smoke belching pistol!!

April 23, 2006, 06:02 PM
Try at least one shot at night.

April 25, 2006, 04:01 PM
I wonder what is manufacturers recommendation for max. powder charge for Walker?

I'm repeating myself but we're again having an argument about max. loads for Remington, some people claims that it's foolish to shoot loads above 30grs as the manufacturer and shopkeeper recommend 28grs as a max. load. Does Uberti use weaker steel for Remingtons than it uses for Cattlemans? Cattleman's nitro-proof and if it's nitro-proof I doubt that any properly loaded BP cartridge can blow it up. Or are the chamber walls in Remington thinner than Cattlemans chamber walls? And I ain't sure if it's relevant at all to compare cartridge gun and percussion revolver in this matter. Hope you get the idea from above, I can be a little confusing when I try to explain something.

Does anyone know what were the loads like at 19th century? For Remington 1858 and other percussion revolvers, that is.

April 25, 2006, 04:46 PM
Finlander. Lets put it this way, there AINT no overload possible with this arm and black powder!

I use 40 grains in mine as EVERY DAY load. I have regularly used all the H777 one can stuff in AND the 'smiths ammonium nitrate based powder which is HOT HOT HOT.

You have no fears, no worries, just shoot and enjoy!

April 25, 2006, 07:18 PM
manyirons has it. Colt's original instructions apply to all of them:

April 25, 2006, 07:32 PM
I bought a signature colt on earth day, 2000 (I try to buy my guns on as many leftist/socialist holidays as I can - think about them, there's lots).

Anyway, my ears are still ringing from shooting it without hearing protection ONCE. Or maybe the ringing is from the hundreds of hours in blackhawks and hueys...

DEFINITELY a magnum revolver. Fun to shoot.

Thanks for the memories.

socialist occupied Maryland
state of impending dhimmitude

April 25, 2006, 08:15 PM
normbal, I like that concept - so with a little luck, next 'Earth Day' I'll make my first foray into black powder!

(It'll take some care to accumulate a discretionary fund)


April 25, 2006, 08:39 PM
Well, there's MAY day, Juneteenth, Labor day, among others, you'll need a BIG fund... ;)

April 26, 2006, 09:52 AM
Is it bad I spent Earth day cutting down trees and shooting pigeons? I would lean towards... no.

April 27, 2006, 04:33 PM
I remember shooting my dad's replica Walker as a kid.... my ears are still ringing. :uhoh: :cool:

Amateur D
May 3, 2006, 10:56 AM
I'm new here, so forgive me if I'm doing this wrong.

I have probably fired about 100 rounds through my Walker and love it. I usually load 50 grains with a .457 ball. I have some questions for some of you pro's:
- I have heard that a Colt Walker could be loaded to 60 grains - is that the same for a Uberti?
- I know this thing was designed to be able to knock down horses - what is the largest game that you would dare hunt with a Walker (at close range)?
- My Walker shoots very low, so I need to take a "full beed" and then some to hit my target at close range - any suggestions on potential modifications to correct that?
- Is cross-firing really a threat? I have always greased my chambers after loading, but find it hard to believe that they could crossfire.
- Does anyone have any real ballistics on the .457 ball with 40, 50, and 60 grains? (I have two different kinds of powder, so maybe an "average" would do)
I appreciate any insight you gentlemen can offer and look forward to some great discussions!

May 3, 2006, 12:06 PM
bunch of threads on that subject here. Check out this one and then search for more:

The Uberti's wil take 60 grains or the equivalent volume of substitute though it is easy to be happy with charges ranging from 45-55. The Uberti is quite a bit stronger than the original colts but seems to have the same chamber capacity. There are about three possible explanations for chain fires and I suspect that they are all true at one time or another. If the balls fit it is very unusual to get one. In the old days, they were probably pretty common. The original bullet is shaped like a triangle with very little contact with the chamber walls. It was easy to seat them crooked opening a channel into the powder column. this was bad since the pointy bullets provided a nice shape charge when you spilled powder over from one chamber to the next.
When chain fires occur, there is usually no damage to the Colt and Remington types but it severely unnerves the shooter.

May 3, 2006, 01:44 PM
Another theory is to beware of loose fitting caps on clean, slippery nipples which can loosen up due to recoil.

Amateur D
May 3, 2006, 04:05 PM
Thanks, MEC. I also found some of your other Walker chat. Good info!!!

May 3, 2006, 05:11 PM
Just pinch them a little to make them oval some. It hurts your fingers to do it alot.
Then some guy told me that he sits at home and uses a small pair of pliers to do that, so I compromised and take a small pair of pliers to the range with me.

Anyway... no more caps flying off. This was especially helpful with those Dragoons with the heavy loads.

Amateur D
May 4, 2006, 06:42 PM
I prefer to have them a little snug so they don't work back on the nipple (while firing the other chambers) and block the cylinder from rotating. However, sometimes I am a little fearful of a cap discharging while seating it on the nipple - from applying too much pressure, having it slip on too hard, then discharge.

Is that a valid fear if I am using the flat surface on the applicator to push the cap on?

May 4, 2006, 09:38 PM
Me too!

Creepy isn't it?

I have this Pietta 1860 model that had a ring cylinder seat that was so over sized that it grooved the caps as it rotated. I had to grind, file, and polish the crap out of it to get clearance.

It was an auction purchase from another liar on gunbroker.

May 5, 2006, 04:00 AM
I doubt that you could set off a cap by pushing it onto the nipple. It needs the weight and speed of a hammer to set it off, the speed of the compression of the explosive inside being the key to it's success. As advised here, I now use a dowel with a leather tip to firmly seat the caps on my 58 but I still get the odd one falling off. They seat better after the nipples start to foul up bit.

May 5, 2006, 08:03 AM
It happened back when they used clorate or mercury fulminate primers. The ones we have now seem to need a sharper blow as Duncan says.

Elmer Keith talked about haveing caps discharge and blistering his thumb as he loaded percussion rifles (Early 1900s and clorate caps).

Bart Noir
May 5, 2006, 12:54 PM
In blistering his thumb, Elmer was also firing a chamber while it was not lined up with the cylinder, wasn't he? I mean, the capping is the last step in loading. I think there would be more to worry about than the cap itself.

Bart Noir

May 5, 2006, 01:44 PM
what i read from Elmer he was talking about a rifle.

Bart Noir
May 5, 2006, 05:43 PM
what i read from Elmer he was talking about a rifle
oh. yeah. I knew that....

OK, I was too fixated on the revolver topic. Gotta think outside the cylinder.

Bart Noir

Yankee John
May 12, 2006, 11:00 PM
Wow- Thanks for all of the info and feedback folks!

Just wanted to show everyone what "Mr. Walker" looks like now; I spent my day-off yesterday slathering it in Birchwood-Casey Plum Brown.


junior geezer
June 4, 2009, 01:49 AM
this is my first ever post, guys (and girls); please be kind.

after having read this thread, i felt quite compelled to register, i needing to leave my comments.


i once "enjoyed" the pleasure of having all six chambers in a replica 1860 Army revolver discharge as one...

i am a handloader and a bullet caster. i shoot cast bullets in each and every of my firearms, including centerfire rifle. in fact, i ONLY shoot cast bullets.

i have a large supply of bullet metal, it being mixed with tin and formed into ingots.

prior to my chain fire experience, i cast .457" round balls for my 1860. i know the 1860 typically uses .451" but i decided upon .457" so that one mould would serve for a Ruger Old Army as well.

rather than casting those .457" round balls out of pure lead, i cast them out of my bullet metal. i do not cast often (the wife doesn't approve of the odor), so when i do cast, i cast in quantity, and in every bullet required.

.457" round balls cast of bullet metal would indeed work in my 1860 Army, and actually fired rather well. HOWEVER, using them rather than .451" pure lead caused the barrel wedge to bend forward over time. bend in the shape of a banana. this bending caused the barrel/ cylinder gap to widen. when this gap became large enough, i would replace the damaged wedge. i have probably gone through eight or ten barrel wedges over the years.

well, one fine day, i was at the range (outdoors). i was on the last of my stock of barrel wedges and had figured to get "one more" range session out of it before ordering replacement pieces.

now here is where things got touchy...

due to the widening barrel/cylinder gap, there was app. .060" inch forward play in the cylinder. to ensure against misfires, i had backed the nipples out a full turn. after cleaning and reloading, i prepared to fire rounds 13-18.

the charges were: 28gr fffg; lubricated felt over-powder wad; .457" hard cast rb; crisco smeared over round balls. the cylinder base pin was likewise lubricated with crisco.

i cocked back and let fly. there was a tremendous discharge. what i recall best is the position of the weapon in recoil: pointed straight up. as one might expect, there was a great deal of smoke. i knew in the moment what had occurred.

i set the now-unloaded piece down on the bench and examined it.

all six chambers had fired. i concluded four of the balls had gone wide, never making contact with the gun. the ball under the hammer passed normally through the barrel. the ball at six o'clock caused all resulting damage. my 1860 has a steel frame, so the frame itself was undamaged. the ball rammer had been flared, so much so that it was beyond repair and had to be pounded from the barrel assembly. the rammer arm retainer, dovetailed into the underside of the barrel had been forcibly removed. the screw retaining the rammer assembly was made useless; though the rammer assembly itself was
undamaged. i never found a single piece of that "six o'clock" ball.

what had occurred? in short, the fall of the hammer drove the cylinder forward, firing the piece; then the recoil of the first charge drove the cylinder rearward, causing the turned-out capped nipples to smack hard against the frame's recoil shield, discharging the remaining chambers as well.

i repaired my 1860 and use it still. no permanent harm done. i no longer fire hardcast balls through it though; i now use off the shelf .490" pure lead round balls run through a "mauser" case sizing die, to .452".

hope this helps to enlighten those of you made curious.

great forum by the way

June 4, 2009, 02:06 AM
Welcome & thanks for posting.
That's the first time that I recall hearing about a "gang of 6" chainfire!
I'm glad that you escaped injury and are here to tell us about it. :)

June 4, 2009, 09:14 AM
As soon as I read that you backed out the nipples I had a bit of a laugh cause I knew that would be the cause. Bet that was a handful with the 6 going off at once! I had a two chamber chainfire go off, and it sounded loud and had more recoil than normal.

EDIT: Think about it: 168 grs. Black P. (6x28) with 6 138 gr. round balls (roughly) for a grand total of 828 grs. of lead going down range.

junior geezer
June 4, 2009, 12:40 PM
howdy, dwave:
the rear of my 1860s cylinder was poorly machined at one nipple face, and for that i always had to turn that one nipple out a quarter turn. as the barrel wedge became more and more bent, a little more turn. that day when all six popped, i had turned all the nipples out due to misfires (rounds 1-12).

June 4, 2009, 08:41 PM
I understand why you did it, I knew when I read it what was going to be the cause. Like I said, bet it was one heck of a handful when it went.

June 4, 2009, 08:52 PM

You know that Juneteenth is about slaves finally learning of their emancipation right? I'm not sure that you can make portray that as a "socialist/leftist" holiday.

BAck to guns: Having only shot blackpowder once, I think that shooting this gun you all are talking about seems like it would be a hoot!


junior geezer
June 5, 2009, 03:51 PM
dwave: i think i was more surprised than anything else. i do know i wouldn't care to have it happen a second time.

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