Pietta New Army 1858 powder charge ?


April 14, 2009, 05:55 PM
Hi. I've got a Pietta 1858 New Army BP revolver, and have been casting some 200gr Minie bullets using the Lee mold 450-200-1R (I was told this mold was "slightly shorter" for the Remington clones ???). Anyhoo, I'm not really sure where to start with a powder charge for it ? Any ideas ? I've tried approx. 20gr of FFFg as thats what my flask throws, but the grouping isn't too good. Anyone got any ideas, higher or lower loads ??

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April 14, 2009, 07:40 PM
From what I have seen, 30-35gr seems to be what many are loading with RB. You might want to go up to 26gr and try that. Go up 2gr at a time and see if you find the happy spot.

April 14, 2009, 08:36 PM
In my Pietta NMA w/ 5.5" barrel I've settled on a 30gr. FFFG Goex charge & the 222gr. conical by Lee "but I've modified mine a little to handle the larger bullet" with yours a 30 grain FFFG charge should be a good load & 37 grains will be about a maximum load, just be sure to have your bullets lubed with a natural lube like what I use.

I use a 50/50 mix of Bees Wax & Crisco as a bullet lube & it helps keep the fouling soft between loadings.

Make sure that you are getting the bullet seated to the first lub ring with your fingers before you ram it home because this way you are assured that it is loading straight into the chamber & therfore shoot straight out the bore.

April 14, 2009, 09:26 PM
id use a round ball .454. any how mic out that bullet it needs to be around .454. next the powder charge is way too small. suprise it works. the 1858 has a short throw rod to seat the bullet. This makes small loads impossible and dangerous to do as you may get an airgap between the bullet and the powder. Next if your bullets are smaller than .454 and do not leave a good shaving of lead when you seat them. Then they are not tight enough. What may happen when you fire off a couple of round is the others may wander forward in the cylinder. A good load is around 40 grains of powder 35-40 this allows you enough room to seat the bullet against the powder. Same time if you do not have a good seal with that bullet and are not cutting lead when you seat them use a .454 round ball you will see a way better accuracy rating.

April 15, 2009, 01:03 AM
I don't know where you guys are getting 35-40grs under a conical. I have found in my Remington Piettas, Euroarms, & Ubertis that 30 grs is about all I can get under the 200gr conical. That is a nice stout load. Any more powder than that and you have to ram the bullet so hard that you crush the powder too much to get the bullet deep enough to clear the cylinder gap and you get less accuracy. Plus, you might just strain the rammer mechanism. 25-30grs is what ought to shoot the best with the conicals. I will shoot any where from 20-30grs FFFg plus a thick lube wad under a .454 ball. The LEE conical is a great bullet for knockdown targets in SASS shoots. They shoot a little higher than the ball.

April 15, 2009, 05:53 AM
Hellgate & Scrat:
in my Pietta NMA I shoot these loads.

Plinker load:
.457 142gr. ball
Lubed wad
22gr. "38 spcl case" FFFG Goex
Remington #11 caps
very accurate but shoots low at even 15 yards but fun for dancing cans & my daughter likes this load.

Hunter load:
.456 222gr. Lee Conical lubed w/ 50/50
30gr. FFFG Goex
Remington #11 caps
another accurate load out to 25 yards "max I've tried" with some serious punch & shoots to POA at 20 yards.
718fps. 254ft. lbs.

With a .457 ball I've managed to get 42gr. FFFg into the chambers with wad & ball but like Hellgate mentioned wasn't the most accurate load but fun none the less & concidder that to be a maximum charge with ball.

With my .456 conical I've managed to get 35gr. FFFG with no dificulties of loading & although the accuracy was not great was tolorable with the power achieved but I've settled for better accuracy with still a decent punch.

With the smaller .450 conical you can get more powder into the chambers than I could with the .456 conical but I would doubt that you can get a full 40gr. FFFG charge in there & still seat the bullet over it completely.

If the OP wants to experiment I would bring a note pad & cleaning supplies to work up a load that his piece likes starting from 20gr. FFFG & maxing out at around 37gr. his best load will more than likely fall close to where I have mine set to 30gr.

April 15, 2009, 12:23 PM
Ooooooh, lots of good data. Thanks guys, I'll savour every last bit.

April 15, 2009, 09:05 PM
Remington (Pietta) 1858 New Model Army--.451 swaged round lead ball in front of 30 grains of Triple Seven 3fffg and kicked off with a Remington #10 percussion cap. Work's every time for me just like Mr. Pietta said it would....

April 15, 2009, 09:30 PM
LOL ya butt when i put my conversion cylinder in shoots 45 colt and 45 shofield and fires everytime

April 15, 2009, 09:59 PM

Hi Scrat. Hope you're well and all..

April 15, 2009, 10:18 PM
& just think guys, with some one like me in y-all's corner we can keep our smoke wagons a goin even in the rain if'n we had too.

April 18, 2009, 01:28 PM
Just got back from the range, and want to thank everyone for their advice. I was shooting 20gr FFFg with a .454 RB, changed this to 30gr as everyone said, and the groupings got MUCH better.
Thanks again, look out competitions here I come ! ;)

April 18, 2009, 05:50 PM
Yup. You might fiddle around with the load in the 15gr. range. My 25-yard load for my #1 Hege-Remington is 9 grains of Swiss 3F, but that is a very light load.

April 19, 2009, 12:45 AM
Finally managed to get some Triple 7 for my ROA-
Need to get load info & lead size for Uberti 1850
Sort it all out in separate possible bags for each till I get used to them all again so no mix ups-
How do ya'll keep this straight between pistols?

April 19, 2009, 01:00 AM
Need to get load info & lead size for Uberti 1850

Uberti 1851 Navy is .376 rb, recommended load is 18gr. 18gr is a light load.

Uberti 1860 Army is a .454rb and a recommended load of 22gr. again that is a light load.

How do ya'll keep this straight between pistols?

I printed ball size and general load size on some card stock and laminated it. Keep it in my shooting box for quick reference.
I take three or four pistols out when I shoot. I try and get everything together the night before and only take the stuff I need.

April 19, 2009, 11:13 AM
Sorry,Oops fat finger typo- I meant the 1860-
So with the 454rb & 22gr could I substitute 20 of 777 (understand its 15% stouter than BP or more compacted making the need for 15% factor.
All have are #11 CCI for the ROA so I still need to hunt up a tin of #10's for the 1860 if I am reading correctly-Is that right?- Hard to understand why all 44 caliber pistols don't use the same cap.

April 19, 2009, 12:37 PM
How do ya'll keep this straight between pistols?

Easy i only buy .44 caliber. Thats it. wont get anything else. For this one reason. I guess i could write down the loads and keep a card too but its just easier to have 3 or 4 .44s with me at the range and give them the same loads to get a desired effect rather than to have to think of what does this one take and what does this one use.

April 19, 2009, 06:10 PM
You can't say that honestly, I know that ASM 1851 Navy .44 will not take the same charge as your Walker. ;)

April 19, 2009, 07:26 PM
The ASM 44 "Navy" won't take as much powder as a Pietta 44 "Navy". The ASMs seem to be not drilled as deep in the chamber as the Piettas. I don't think I can quite get 30grs into my ASMs.

April 19, 2009, 09:19 PM
I figured each pistol might need its own load data because each is pushing a different diameter ball with diff weights. It would be nice and fine to find that say one's 44 Remmy, ROA and 1860 would all shoot well with diff balls with the same charge but believe me my luck does not run like that.-hahah ugh!
Sent my ROA off for tune and Krist cylinder along with my 1860 for same plus fire bluing and case coloring and make a case set. Figure why try to find a cased one when you can have an experienced gunsmith make you an heirloom...and I going to shoot the 1860...a lot.


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