Uberti 1873 cattleman help needed


July 4, 2010, 10:57 PM
I just purchased a few days ago a brand new uberti cattleman .45 colt and have already ran into a problem with it. First off the revolver has only had a full cylinder shot through it but I have worked the action a whole lot. I just noticed that the bolt doesnt want to fully engage the cylinder (like the bolt spring doesnt have enough pressure to do so) whether it is at full cock or with the hammer foward. It doesn't do this everytime but it does it enough where I can't trust the gun.

My questions to you are would I be better off to return it to the factory and wait weeks or months to get it returned to me or should I do the spring replacement myself? I guess it should be noted that I feel very confident I can do the replacement myself. And are there any companys that make a more reliable spring kit so I could possibly replace all the springs in the gun to keep this from happening again? Thank you in advance for any help you might be able to provide.

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July 5, 2010, 12:24 AM
Springs are easy and these guns are much easier to work on than a New Model Ruger, which typically requires three or four hands for reassembly. Get yourself a model-specific driver bit set, Brownells has them. The Heinie music wire trigger/bolt spring is the one you want. It will never fail. Also go ahead and get a reduced power hammer spring. Just keep track of your screws and put them back in the holes they came out of. The SAA has about five or six different sized screw heads so be sure to use the correct bit for each screw. The bit should fit snugly with no wobble and go all the way to the edges.

July 5, 2010, 12:40 AM
Ive had mine aparts before and it was pretty easy towork on. The screws seem pretty soft to me anyways so they do mar easiily if you use to small of a screwdriver etc.

Bruce H.
July 5, 2010, 10:26 AM
Here is a website that shows how to take the SAA style gun apart:
I have a Cimarron Model P and put one of the Heine trigger/bolt springs into it and am very pleased with the trigger/bolt performance. I bought a set of gunsmith screwdrivers at Wal Mart for about $10. The screwdriver set is the one in a red plastic case that is sold where Wal Mart has their ammo counter. I used this set to take my Model P apart with no damage to any of the screw heads.

July 5, 2010, 01:13 PM
I have used Wolff springs in SAA's for perhaps 20 years now with perfect results.

They also make the wire type bolt/trigger spring that will never break.


You might want to take a close look at the bolt cam on the hammer, as well as the end of the bolt itself where it contacts the cam.

If these areas are rough or ill-fitted, it can cause all sorts of problems, as well as broken bolts. Uberti's come from the factory needing bolt cam attention.


July 5, 2010, 01:15 PM
thanks guys for all the info but here's another question does anyone make a really really strong spring kit one that will last a long time? Im not into CAS so this will be a woods gun mostly and I want it to be pretty strong.

July 5, 2010, 01:19 PM
Really really strong is not necessary, or desirable from a longevity or reliability standpoint.

The standard hammer spring is plenty strong to fire any primer, under any conditions.

Going stronger will only add to gun movement and inaccuracy when shooting when the hammer hits the frame and jars it off-target.

A strong bolt/trigger spring is not necessary either if the gun is fitted correctly.


July 5, 2010, 02:16 PM
rcmodel, how would I fix the problems you are talkin about with the bolt cam and hammer contact

July 5, 2010, 02:48 PM
The hammer cam / bolt arm will be apparent when you take the gun apart.

Any roughness or burs on either part need to be stoned off & polished.

Most of the Uberti's I have worked on had way more cam sticking out of the hammer then is necessary, and that puts a real bind on the flat section bolt spring when it is forced over the cam during cocking.

I round off any sharp edges on the cam & bolt spring arm and polish them so they work as intended without putting undue force on the bolt. It also helps to stone a slight tapered leading edge on the bolt arm so it can slide over the cam without catching on it.

Note the very rough bolt cam on this Uberti hammer and the burs sticking up all over the edge of it. It's supposed to be a very smooth cam, not a mill file!:

This is about what it should look like, only I like mine more polished then that!:


July 5, 2010, 03:25 PM
You really need a specialty set of bits for the SAA and you can't get them at Walmart. The mainspring screw, bottom grip frame screw and trigger/bolt spring screws are all very wide and thin. Forget the generic stuff, get a fitted set. It ain't much more than $15 for the bits and driver, if that.

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