Traditions revolvers


June 1, 2006, 04:49 PM
Traditions revolvers, specifically the Colt 1860 Army .44, how good are they?

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June 1, 2006, 05:26 PM
Traditions imports Piettas. I have a Pietta 1860 .44 Army, the 1st BP revolver I owned, and I had some trouble with it at first - mainly issues with the wedge; I drove it in too far and peened the exit slot in the frame, causing a loose, sloppy frame/barrel fit. Shims took care of it and now it's a great gun - well balanced, accurate, great to look at. Perfectly timed, great action...I like it and recommend it.

June 1, 2006, 06:06 PM
I cannot give any recommendations on that specific revolver since I don't
have one. But I have friends that have the tradition revolvers and if bought
brand new they have a terrific service Dept that will replace anything on
the revolver no questions ask.

June 1, 2006, 08:24 PM
I have heard Traditions is a very good company but like Pohill said they are Pietta. They may also sell the Uberti models too I don't know but that $245 pirce would be that of a Uberti, Pietta 1860 Steel sell for $184 I think at Cabelas.
If you want a choice of either and/or in charcaol blue...try Taylors, take a look here;

Weird Guy
June 2, 2006, 01:33 AM
Traditions revovlers is somewhat a misnomer. Traditions is a US company that sells guns, but they don't make them. Pietta in Italy makes them. The other company that actually builds the guns is Uberti, which are a bit better, but also a bit more expensive.

The Pietta guns are good guns. I own a 1851 Navy .44 myself. I like it a lot. I shoot it more than my Ruger Old Army.

What is really good about Traditions is their Redi-packs. The tools and other bits that come in that pack are all useful, especially the wrench to get the cones out of the cylinder for cleaning (has a pin prick in it as well if you want to clear a fouled cone as well). I even love their little compact cleaning kit. I got it all from a local sporting goods store for about $160.

Long story made short, would I buy a Pietta through Traditions? Yes.

June 2, 2006, 01:59 AM
As has been said, Traditions imports the Piettas. Taylors imports Uberti. If you bought a Pietta from, say, Cabelas, and have a problem with it you can: send it back to Cabelas or deal with Traditions. My Pietta was a problem at first, due to my mistakes. I bought it from a store in Maine but dealt with Traditions, who offered to replace/repair it. They even sent me spare parts for free: hammer, trigger, springs, etc. Good people. I kept the gun, worked through the problems, and it is a great gun. I bought an Uberti from Midway that had some minor problems. I didn't call Midway - I called Taylors. They looked up the serial number, said, yep it's one of ours, sent me some replacement parts, for free (and offered to take it back and exchange it). Good people.
Uberti used to be much better than Piettas, but from what I've seen, and heard from others, Pietta has come a long long way in quality. I'd say it's right about even...

The Sicilian
June 10, 2006, 11:09 PM
My experience with a 1860 Army from Traditions and made by Pietta was horrible! I heard that Traditions gets all of the third rate rejects from Pietta, that's why they're so cheap in price. My barrel latch popped right off after less than 50 or so shots! I would personally stay away from Traditions pistols. On the other hand I may have heard wrong and I could have just been very unlucky and bought a does happen. No matter what company you buy from, whether it's Ruger or Uberti, someone will eventually get a lemon. It is impossible to control quality to the point of perfection. I forget who told me that Traditions got all of the third rate Pietta revolvers but the one I got looked fine until I fired it a few times.

June 11, 2006, 12:47 AM
I didn't read anyone mention that Traditions are primarily brass framed weapons. They look nice, but I prefer steel frames.

June 11, 2006, 01:26 AM
Traditions does not make revolvers - they import them, mostly Piettas, in brass and steel frames. Taylors imports Ubertis, they don't make them. I had 2 barrel spring latches fall off two different Ubertis.

June 11, 2006, 01:34 AM
The same is true of CVA and Navy Arms.

June 11, 2006, 02:47 AM
Pohill I fixed the Rem Uberti from Traditions...:O)
A beautiful revolver Shophia is indeed.
Pietta just happens to ship some bad ones in batches just like everyone els e does. Ya just send it back and get another as you do with Cabelas, Taylors, Cimarron, or whoever. If you get one from Italy made after lunch, well you got a 50/50 chance of it being a #1 or a #5...LoL! Lunches are sometime lengthy in Italy, Ya know?

June 11, 2006, 09:08 AM
SG, that Remington that you adopted from me (bought in Maine) came in a Taylors box. The dovetail loading lever latch - that's right, you fixed it with a shim, right? The same thing happened on my 1862 .36 (Taylors - Uberti). Other than that, everything was perfect on both guns. I used to dump on Pietta alot - in fact, I proposed a Pietta toss at the Olympics - but my 1860
.44 is one of my favorites, and I have an 1851 .36 Pietta (made in 1986) that's also a great gun. The Paterson I traded you for is a Pietta - Paterson's have their own problems, but it's a good one, too. Pietta/Uberti - it can be a crap shoot.

June 16, 2006, 03:08 AM
I found a steel framed Traditions 1860 here:

June 16, 2006, 06:12 AM
That used Auction Arms 1860 (Pietta) at $100 plus shipping wouldn't be a bad buy (wouldn't go too much higher, maybe $130 or so). I'd like to see a close-up of the right side of the frame to see how the wedge exit slot looks, plus see the date of manufacture. Mine is also a Pietta and it's great. I stripped the blue off, plumb browned it, stripped that off, reblued it, and now it looks old and shoots great. For some reason, that's the only gun I own that doesn't get jammed with spent caps.

June 16, 2006, 08:32 AM
SG, that Remington that you adopted from me (bought in Maine) came in a Taylors box. The dovetail loading lever latch - that's right, you fixed it with a shim, right?

Yup Dave I used some Aerospace gold backed tape on her .003" thick and it worked great on that Uberti Rem. Has never moved.
My 1860 Pietta shoots great to point of aim at most any target acquisition and don't eat caps, love it. Does your 1851 Pietta like to suck caps down the hammer like my Uberti '51 does?

June 16, 2006, 10:14 AM
"I had 2 barrel spring latches fall off two different Ubertis."

So did I. tightening the dovetail only worked for a while and I finally resorted to a dab of j&b weld. I've also had problems with the locator pins in the bottom front of th frame falling out during cleaning. Peening the holes a bit tighter works for that.

It does appear that Pietta has greatly improved in the last year or so. we can expect to have to fiddle with either Pietta or Uberti more than we would tollerate from modern revolver. I still find Uberti and the people who handle them a good bit easier to deal with and more prone to provide accurate information than I have gotten from Pietta.

Palmetto is seldom mentioned and this is probably good because Palmetto sucks so hard they could probably function as a vacuum pump in a cannery.

June 16, 2006, 10:40 AM
I used West System Epoxy to attach the loading lever latch. Works good so far. I emailed Pietta with a question once and they got back to me quickly - broken English (kinda funny) but it was a fast response. I almost bought a Palmetto but I saw the bad reviews on another forum and backed off. I've had good dealings with Traditions and Taylors. Half the fun (fun?) of these revolvers is working on them, but my next purchase will probably be a Ruger.
SG, my 1851 .36 loves to eat spent caps. Not as bad as the Walker, but annoying.

The Sicilian
June 16, 2006, 11:36 AM
Barrel latch.

The Sicilian
June 16, 2006, 11:39 AM
Or catch, depends on what breakdown you look at. It would make more sense to call it the loading lever latch/catch though. I guess it's got something to do with the way the Italians translate to english.

June 16, 2006, 03:27 PM
I bought a Colt 1860 Army .44, marketed by Traditions, about three years ago. Mine is made by Pietta.
It is a very fine revolver and I have no complaints. Fit and finish are nearly first class. I couldn't believe that the dealer only wanted $130 for this particular revolver.
Judging from what has been written, I may have found one a bit better than average. But the fact remains that it is every bit as good as an Uberti to the naked eye.
I'm not a metallurgist and can't state that the metal is softer or harder than it needs to be for its application, but the darned thing works.
My only complaint is that Pietta revolvers tend to have shallower rifling than their Uberti counterparts. Shallow rifling doesn't shrug off black powder (or its substitutes) fouling as well as the deeper rifling.
However, if I use a felt wad heavily greased with a homebrew lubricant (lately referred to as "Gatofeo's No. 1 Lubricant") then fouling problems are negated or severely reduced.
The lubricant consists of a mix of 1 part canning paraffin (sold in 1 lb. blocks, used to seal off the tops of jelly jars), 1 part mutton tallow (sold by Dixie Gun Works) and 1 part beeswax. All amounts are by weight, not volume. Vary from these specific ingredients and the lubricant's quality will suffer. You must use the ingredients as specified.
Felt wads must be made of hard felt, or you may use Wonder Wads soaked in the above lubricant, after the ingredients are melted and well mixed.
I can't explain it, but the above is the finest black powder lubricant I've found thus far. No, it's not MY recipe. I found it in a 1943 American Rifleman magazine. The recipe is what the factories used many, many years ago for the bullets of outside-lubricated ammunition, such as .22 rimfires and .32, .38 and .41 Long or Short Colt.

But I digress ... :D

My Pietta-made 1860 Colt Army, marketed by Traditions, is a very nice piece. At 25 yards, from a benchrest, it will put six .454 inch balls into a 2" circle. I use between 25 and 35 grains of Goex FFFG black powder and Remington caps (can't recall offhand if it requires No. 10 or No. 11 caps).
Pour in the powder, push a greased felt wad into the mouth of the chamber, and seat it firmly on the powder. Do this with all chambers, or as many as you wish to load.
After seating the greased felt wad, then seat the .454 or .457 inch ball in each chamber.
Why do it this way? For a number of good reasons:
1. If you forget to add powder to a chamber (and you will, someday, we all have) it's a heck of a lot easier to remove a stuck felt wad than a stuck ball.
2. Seating the felt wad as a separate operation gives you a better feel for how much pressure you're applying. Do not crush the powder beneath, just seat the wad firmly so there is no airspace. You should feel a little resistance and hear a small "crump" when you seat the wad.
3. Jugging a wad and ball while seating is clumsy.
4. If you have to set the revolver down for some reason, the powder won't run out of a chamber if the wad is seated.
5. Seating the oversized ball is easier if you don't have the added resistance of the wad and powder compression as well.
6. You get a better feel for how much pressure you're applying to the ball, while seating.

Yes, it's a more time-consuming process but worth it. I find that my loads are more accurate if I take the time to charge the cylinder as outlined above.
I don't shoot Cowboy Action, where time is at a premium, so the above method may be too tedious for the dress-up folks.
For more information on using a cap and ball revolver, see my earlier posts at the top of this section, now presented as stickies.

And heed anything Mec tells you --- unless it's how he killed an elk at 973 yards with a .36 Navy during a high wind in the St. Joe River drainage of Idaho! :scrutiny:
It was ME that done that! And it was with a .31 Colt during a tornado outside Elko, Nevada!
Ya gotta watch Mec ... he's shifty ... always pilfering my best lies ... :scrutiny:

June 16, 2006, 03:34 PM
O COURSE its GATOFEO Nr. 1 LUBE! Ya FOUND it sos ya gets tha honor of bein its daddy!

I load like you BUT i puts a nice stiff vegetable fiber card wad on tha powder first.

Why? Well, ya mentioned it with them Peties! Tha card wad seems ta SCRAPE the bore a bit keepin it cleaner. Works on tha ubies and whatever else. Tha BOSS loads tha same way i jus copy him.

HE likes yer lube also, uses it and endorses it!

June 16, 2006, 04:13 PM
"unless it's how he killed an elk at 973 yards with a .36 Navy during a high wind in the St. Joe River drainage of Idaho! :scrutiny:
It was ME that done that!"

I knew he catch me out on that one.

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