Kirst Conversion for 1858 Remington


Nando Aqui
October 5, 2008, 09:23 AM
Although I have been shooting and reloading rifles, handguns and shotguns for over 40 years, including competing in all three disciplines, I have never had any experience with black powder weapons. (As I just recently learned that the later are not considered firearms?)

I am now considering buying a black powder “1858 New Army .44 Caliber Revolver” from Cabela’s ($220). This one has the 8” barrel. As far as I can tell it is either manufactured by Pietta or Uberti, and I believe this one is Pietta, but I am not sure.

As part of my new adventure, I also plan to buy a “Universal .45 LC Kirst Cartridge Konverter With Loading Gate” ($265) from one of several vendors.

Q1: Has anyone had any experience with the Kirst conversion cylinder with loading gate?

Q2: Is it advisable to clean the revolver after firing either black powder (original cylinder) or the metallic cartridge (conversion cylinder) before firing the other?

Thank you for your help!

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October 5, 2008, 12:19 PM
I shoot a 58 Remmie made by Pietta, I have had it for over 25 years now and it is still going strong. I got a kirst konverter for it several years ago and really like it. I started with one of their 2 piece drop in conversions, I still have it but about a year ago I upgraded to one with the loading gate, and I highly recommend it.

You can switch from cylinder to cylinder with out any problems but you still have fouling with either cylinder when you are shooting black powder loads, some people use the smokeless cowboy loads in the conversion cylinders but i prefer black powder. If you shot it enough it will eventually bind, no matter what cylinder you use. Using the smokeless loads creates a lot less fouling, it all depends on how much you want to shoot at one time with out cleaning.

Old Fuff
October 5, 2008, 12:31 PM
One possible, but often overlooked issue is the bore diameter. Some cap & ball .44 reproduction revolvers have bore diameters around .456", where today's .45 Colt bullets and bores are .452".

This doesn't leave you with an unsfe condition, but accuracy sometimes suffers.

Importers such as Cimarron are now offering these revolvers as conversions, and these have the correct bore size - although they shouldn't as a rule, be backward converted to a c & b, unless the chambers are right for a .452" bore.

Also the cartridge-converted models are proofed for use with MILD .45 Colt loads, where the c & b guns are not.

October 8, 2008, 02:39 PM
hey i was wondering bout that kirst w/loading gate too, i was curious if 45 colt reloads loaded w/trailboss in a 1858 repro is as accurate as the modern 45 colts? also if the lee 200g conical could be reloaded into 45 colt shells, an finally if it is as accurate as modern guns, are there any modern 45 colts that would shoot just as well for $280(just get a whole new gun?):evil:? i dont know if this question really belongs here, but there are so many threads about the kirst already i didnt really want to start a new one lol:D

Mike 56
October 10, 2008, 11:25 AM
Here is a link to a online cap and ball revolver magazine This months issue has an article on 1858 cylinder conversions.


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