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Cylinder Swapping - 1860 Army

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by Lunie, Mar 11, 2013.

  1. Lunie

    Lunie Well-Known Member

    With all the endless yammering about how the Remington NMA is so fantastic, what with its amazing ability to swap cylinders...

    Here is a demo of swapping cylinders on an open-top "Colt". No claims to being *fast*, but it certainly isn't a week-long process. :neener:


    I'm sure that some of you pistoleros can do better, but that wasn't the point. Then again, if you CAN, why not record it and proceed with the one-upsmanship?
  2. the Black Spot

    the Black Spot Well-Known Member

    I have an 1860 i can swap the cylinder in, in less than 10 seconds.
  3. Lunie

    Lunie Well-Known Member

    Then "Show Me", Arkie. :evil:
  4. the Black Spot

    the Black Spot Well-Known Member

    Would if i could .....:)

    It is an older well used 1860, easy to push out arbor pin, pull barrel and slide on other cylinder.
  5. StrawHat

    StrawHat Well-Known Member

    I am still not sure what the fascination is with swapping cylinders. Has anyone ever found a verifiable historical reference to it being done? I sure haven't. There is a reason folks with single action revolvers tended to carry two if they were serious about it.
  6. Tommygunn

    Tommygunn Well-Known Member


    If you searched every last letter, historical book, diary, account, whatever, and could not find one instance of someone switching out cylinders, would that actually conclusively prove that it never happened?:confused:
    From what I have read, I agree with you that the most common method of reloading was the second gun method. There are known accounts of irregular guerillas in the Civil War carrying "braces" of revolvers.
    I tend to think that if it was possible to happen, it probably did at some point, to a degree atleast. I have to wonder how many cavalry soldiers might have started out switching cylinders, for example, and as they gained experience and acquired guns, simply refined their methods to carrying a few guns instead.
    Could be .... huh?;)
  7. BigG

    BigG Well-Known Member

    I saw one of those Clint Eastwood characters who swapped cylinders in a pair of Remingtons for speed loading. Might've been High Plains Drifter?
  8. 1KPerDay

    1KPerDay Well-Known Member

    Pale Rider.
  9. StrawHat

    StrawHat Well-Known Member

    The interesting thing about the movie character is at the end, when he needed a final shot, he wasn't dumb enough to try to swap out the cylinder. He relied on a second revolver.
  10. buttrap

    buttrap Well-Known Member

    Being around and having horses for over 50 years the idea of swapping a cylinder in a revolver while on one is as commen sence as commen sence gun laws. Basicly its a stupid idea. Plus with the hand fitting of guns at that time getting a cylinder from gun A to fit gun B would be more luck than anything else.
  11. jeepnik

    jeepnik Well-Known Member

    Not sure how fast I am, but I do it regularly on 1860's. Any way you look at it, assuming you have one broken in, swapping a cylinder on an 1860 is much quicker than reloading one.

    But truth be told, during the 1860's hey day, it was quite common for folks needing a "reload" to simply have a second/third/fourth/etc. revolver. Which by the way was amply demonstrated in another Eastwood film "Outlaw Josey Wales".

    I just like being able to shoot more between reloading cylinders.
  12. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Well-Known Member

    Come on guys, Captain Jack Hayes fight with the Comanches in 1844 when his Texas rangers swapped cylinders in their Patersons. The pony express riders would dump their rifles and arm themselves with a Colt and a spare cylinder. Plenty of references. But, like I said a thousand times before and I wil say until the day I pass, the REAL gun that won the West was the Colt Paterson!!! Put that in your pipe and smoke it SAA Peacemaker and '73 Winchester!!!

  13. Jim K

    Jim K Well-Known Member

    Hmmm. I guess the Paterson revolver was a pretty potent weapon in the Old West. Especially the ones with a loading gate and ejector rod.

  14. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Well-Known Member

    Yea, I know, bad picture of a real Paterson. But, just search for ‘Colt’s Paterson Revolver’ in the west, plenty of fights with that old percussion revolver. They say Kit Carson loved his rifle but he slept like a baby at night knowing he had his brace of Colt Paterson’s lying across his chest.
  15. shafter

    shafter Well-Known Member

    It may have happened but I tend to think it was very rare. Where would the spare cylinders come from? With a war going I'm sure Colt and Remington were putting each cylinder made into a firearm instead of shipping them out as extras. Unless a gun was damaged I'm sure most battlefield pickups were kept intact.
  16. Big Al Mass

    Big Al Mass Well-Known Member

    Pony Express riders were issued a revolver with a spare cylinder or 2. I don't remember were I read it, but I know I read it somewhere.
  17. Crawdad1

    Crawdad1 Well-Known Member

  18. shafter

    shafter Well-Known Member

    I kinda thought they weren't issued firearms to cut down on weight. Could be wrong though.
  19. jeepnik

    jeepnik Well-Known Member

    Then again, another thought just popped up. Spare cylinders were a lot less expensive than an entire revolver. So, it could be some folks had multiple cylinders as a cost saving method.
  20. ontarget

    ontarget Well-Known Member

    If you handle the job at hand with the first shot you still have 5 more for back-up and won't need a spare cylinder. ONE SHOT ONE KILL. (lol). Just saying......

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