movies, and cap 'n ball revolvers...


Jamie C.
November 5, 2006, 10:56 PM
Just watched the movie Bad Girls again the other night. ( Found the DVD at Walmart for less than $6. :D )

Not a bad movie, and plenty of the usual "cowboy" guns to be seen... plus Madeline Stowe, Andie MacDowell, Mary Stuart Masterson and Drew Barrymore skinny-dippin' and generally shooting up a bunch of bandits... So what's not to like? :D

Anyway.... one of the other interesting things about the movie is the fact that the lead character "Cody" Zamora, apparently carries something other than the usual Colt "Peacemaker".

Have a look at this screen cap:

The second gun from the top, just over the Winchester rifle, looks like a nickeled Colt 1848 Baby Dragoon to me... What do you folks think?
Edit: After a second look, that's probably an 1849 pocket model... No square-back trigger guard. And at another point in the movie it looks more like an 1862 Police... 2 different guns, maybe?

Anyway, just one of those minor little amusements for me... seeing something other than the usual stuff in the movies. ( I do like John Wayne's movies, but damn, I get tired of seeing the same two guns, over and over again... Especially when the movie's set in some time period before 1873 or so... :rolleyes: )

Now I gotta find DVDs of Tombstone and Silverado, to replace my old VHS versions....

Anyway, if you haven't seen the movie, or haven't seen it in a while, you might wanna go look it up.


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November 6, 2006, 12:57 AM
Drew Barrymore is a goddess! love that movie!

Jamie C.
November 6, 2006, 04:14 PM
Hmm... It seems the cowgirls have scared everybody off... :uhoh:

Well, let's try again... Here's a better look at the pistol I'm wondering about:

It's obviously a cartridge conversion... but what cartridge would a .31 cal gun most likely be converted to? I've read of .32 rimfire conversions... were there no .32 centerfire rounds around 1890 or so?

Anyway... the gun's a curiosity to me... You don't seem many 5 shot percussion pocket revolver conversions in the movies. Or anyplace else, for that matter.


November 6, 2006, 05:36 PM
It looks like a "Turned Round Barrel Colt Pocket Navy Conversion." These seem to have been done around 1872. Barrel lengths appear to be 4.5 inches, 5.5 inches, and the rarest, 6.5 inches. Most were made after July, 1872.
There were both .38 rimfire cartridges and .38 centerfire cartridges available. I can't tell from the photo which it is; low serial #'s were rimfire, high ones were centerfire.

The above information is from A Study of Colt Conversions and Other Percussion Revolvers by R. Bruce McDowell, Copyright 1997 by Krause Publication, pages: @349....352

It isn't really unlikely at all such guns were still in use around 1890.
The rebated cylinder indicates it was originally a .36 navy caliber.

November 6, 2006, 08:42 PM
Thats one nice looking piece... are those ivory or horn grips?? They seem translucent, so they may even be mother of pearl??

Jamie C.
November 6, 2006, 08:47 PM
Thanks for the info, Tommygunn.

I suspect that Hollyweird is up to it's usual nonsense with this one, and trying to pass two different guns off as the same one, since for most of the movie the gun looks like this, except with an ejector and housing:

And in at least one instance it looks like this, except with a shorter barrel and a small/non-existent front sight ( Always with the same nickel finish and pearl grips though ):

( The "window" between the cylinder and frame, where the loading lever would be changes size and shape. In one scene it's very small and the underside of the barrel looks very "1851-ish", then later, it's larger and the underside of the barrel has the smooth flowing contours of the 1860s guns. )

Anybody that watches the movie in the near future, pay attention to the gun when Cody pokes it up under the storekeeper's chin, when they first go into the town in Texas, and you'll see what I mean.

One other thing I noticed was that the gun has a rear sight on the conversion ring instead of just a notch in the hammer nose.


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