Question about Cleaning A BP Revolver


May 23, 2006, 04:11 PM
I'am reading more and more about people stripping down their revolvers down to the last screw either for cleaning or just to degrease them. My Question is Why)I can see the manufacture's recommendations(cylinder,nipples,grips,)But with all the excellent commercial spray cleaners and cans of compress
air readily available at all sporting goods store. why take down anthing else
(Spring, trigger,hammer, stops, bolt,)As you can read from some of the readers things don't always go back that easy or quite right. Still waiting for my Revolver to come in.

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May 23, 2006, 04:37 PM
You will find that with BP, fouling/residue gets everywhere. It's sometimes a good idea to do this just to keep the corrosion down.

May 23, 2006, 05:13 PM
I strip mine down every time. I finally have gotten into the habit of taking no more than two guns out with me.

Some people use petro chemicals of all kinds to clean them faster but I would recommend not doing that.

Those powders will eat away at everything. If you use chemicals that get into the metals and then dry, they will begin to leave microscopic (at first) nooks and crannies that will end up being worse problems later.

Look around the site here and you will find a lot of methods for cleaning and seasoning those metals.

May 23, 2006, 05:35 PM
Well, Back to Midway I go to order me some screwdrivers for the revolver and I guess dixie for a spring press. And a king size diagram. I paid too much for my revolver to take a chance. Oh yes and the brass hammer. Boy this is getting expensive. Thank you

May 23, 2006, 05:44 PM
I strip mine right down every time I shoot it and clean it in hot water with liquid soap. I then put the parts into a bucket of very hot water and then while the bits are still hot I dry them on an old linen tea towel. I then lay them in a cardboard tray with some kitchen paper and spray with WD40. I leave them covered on the soaked paper for about an hour. I then re-assemble the gun and spray with gun oil before putting it away in it's box. It's a labour of love and it always looks 110%!
I have just got my hands on a mini oven so the next cleaning will be a quick rinse in hot water, a dry then 30 mins @150c!
I pull it through and wipe it over with a cloth soaked in Windex when I am shooting but that is just to make things easier later.

May 23, 2006, 06:18 PM
Edggy, it may sound like alot a work, but after you do it a couple times it's very simple. The residue as Sjohns pointed out goes everywhere. If you stay on top of it you may not be replacing a broken bolt, bolt/trigger spring, hand or hand spring. Let alone a stuck stripped head screw. There's only two main sized screw drivers on most Colt revs, Three a very small one on Patersons and the hand to hammer on an 1858 Remington. You can find them a Walmart/or ? the Stanley set for little or nothin'. We gotta save our money for more revolvers you know...HeHe!
You'll enjoy taken them down, just remember the right size screwdriver for the head. They are very very soft screws.

May 23, 2006, 06:36 PM
It's really no trouble at all. I've found nearly whole percussion caps inside the works while disassembling. But you do want the right size screwdrivers.

May 23, 2006, 07:16 PM
I know you'd like to be able to take it out and put it away, not having to clean it everytime. I can sympathise with that. We just can't afford to do that with these guns.

Modern weapons shooting modern powders can be put in the armory one day and cleaned the next or the next day. But we can't do this with these.

If you go out to shoot, you will find that after the third cylinder's worth of firing that everyhing is trying to lock up. The gun is "fouling". That build up of stuff eats away at everything, and gets into everything. Its the nature of the beast.

Some days I even decide to not go out and shoot because I don't have the time in the evening for cleaning. But once you get used to it and have a routine down, it does get simpler and faster.

Sometimes I boil out the cylinder and stripped frame with a little Dawn dish liquid in the water. Some times I just use Hoppes to clean it all out with Q tips. It depends on how much shooting I did and how much powder I went through. You can use wd40 like Duncan does, but just remember that it is a penetrating oil.

There is a big debate as to whether one should use petroleum based subtances like Hoppes or WD 40 or to use natural cleaners and lubes like bore butter or crisco. Simply choose and do that.

The real issue is... that if you don't get that cleaning routine down, these bp revolvers won't last long.

May 23, 2006, 07:35 PM
I really (Big Time) appreciate all this information and doing a print out for my folder of everthing so I won't forget. Thank You All

May 23, 2006, 08:17 PM
It is fun.

May 24, 2006, 12:16 AM
Fouling IS going to get everywhere. You just made an 8,000 psi explosion, what would you expect? BP is not all that corrosive, if you don't clean till the next day, you are not going to get an ate away pistol. If you use Pyrodex, all bets are off, it is MORE corrosive than BP.

You should get in the habit of stripping it to the last screw and cleaning in hot soapy water, drying thoroughly, under heat, and slather with your choice of lube.

Nice to have the warm parts in your hand and the lube in that hand, watch the lube cover the parts.

You say you haven't gotten yours yet. I don't know if it's cold feet, "Man, if I take this thing apart, will I ever get it back together?", or if you just don't want to do the cleaning. It IS a big part of the "experience", a half hour or so of winding down. You have torn down a piece with not too many pieces, and not too critical in the re-assembly. Hard to break anything, no precision fits like a Smith or Colt centerfire.

When you get it, try taking it down, see if you like the experience. It is a good feeling to tear down, clean, lube and re-assemble.



May 24, 2006, 07:59 AM
If you want, I've got a diagram in pdf format sized to, something like 22 inches by 16 inches. I just stripped down my pistol and took a picture. A bit of photoshop work later, and viola ... a labeled breakdown. The only problems are (1) it doesn't tell you where everything goes, and (2) it's a LARGE file ... 2.7MB.
If anyone would like a looksee, let me know (if your e-mail server will handle it), and I'll send it out.
If I get a stainless model, I'm planning on doing the same thing with it, with the addition of closeup shots of the forcing cone, and pockets/slots for the hammer, trigger, bolt, hand, etc. Tried with my blued pistol, but my photography skills (lighting related, I'm sure) are lacking enough that none of the shot I tried came out.

May 24, 2006, 08:07 AM
I'm guessin it's an 1858 Rem diagram you're talkin about. See if this helps with assembly.

May 24, 2006, 09:16 AM
Dis/assembling the Remington isn't really difficult at all, just look when disassembling the gun how the parts are. When I got my Remington I first dis/assembled it few times and now I could do it easily while blindfolded. Very simple thing that Remington.

May 24, 2006, 09:58 AM
No) the one I got is a 1847 Walker from midway.I've always wanted one.
Iam thinking of maybe using that new Triple Seven powder from Hodgdon.
I need to find out whether they have it in a pellet form. I guess I'll call them
after work.

May 24, 2006, 01:38 PM
:what: Just to save you some head ache don't get the pellets. Get the granuler of what ever you buy. Really!
And congradulations on the New Walker...100lbs. a fun in a 5lb. revolver yeehaw! :cool:
Here's a Walker diagram:

May 24, 2006, 06:16 PM
I think I'am going to let my dad fire the first rounds just to see.I guess I watch too many Clint Eastwood movies. Oh well I'll fire the darn thing if I have to buy a tripod for it. Like I said Ive always wanted one.And I've been saving my money
for a long time (which is not easy now a days due to the economy) to make the purchase. Thank You for the schematic.

May 24, 2006, 08:42 PM
I took my 1858 Remmie totally apart today for the very first time after reading this thread.

I'm not very mechanically inclined.

It was fairly easy and straighforward.

And it was enlightening just how much gunk was down in the mechanism.

And yes, an old crushed percussion cap did fall out of it. In fact, it was so coated with residue, that I at first thought it was part of the gun, until I wiped it off.

So go for it. If I can disassemble and assemble an 1858 Remmie, anyone can.


May 25, 2006, 08:24 AM
hillbilly, Did you remove the main spring. If so was hard to do without a spring
press (I think Dixie sells this hand held press's) Anyway how did you do it and
besides screw drivers what else did you use. Thank You

May 25, 2006, 08:48 AM
I did not take out the mainspring.

I used a screwdriver, hot soapy water, and q-tips dipped in the hot soapy water to get into the crevices.

I also used an old strainer to put all the little parts and screws into so I could wash them, and then rinse them effectively in hot water without losing them.


May 25, 2006, 11:46 AM
The spring on my Pietta comes out quite easily. I just make sure that the tension screw in the butt is removed before you take it out. I also make sure that the forend is stripped first so i can get a better grip on the frame and that the trigger is removed.

May 25, 2006, 11:55 AM
Eggy if you will notice the mainspring of your Walker is quite differant for the Remington 1858 and other Colt models. (charts above)
On the Walker you do need tools get it compressed and removed. That Walker mainspring vise it supposed to work very well. The thing is you need to remove the mainspring to remove the hammer and hand, i.e. for cleaning.
I have a friend in another forum that uses 35gr of 777 FFg in his Walkers and loves it. Goex BP is available via shipping up to 25lbs I believe. I'll post a Goex distributor site...and you can get it from Dixie Gun Works. It's a hassel with being charged Hazmat fees, but I guess it depends on how bad you want some. There are other brand of BP, Elephant, Swiss, ect.
Just taker out and shooter..HeHe! Have fun...

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