Quantcast
Conicals in cap-n-ball revolvers: why so inaccurate? - THR
THR  

Go Back   THR > Tools and Technologies > Blackpowder Shooting

Welcome to THR
You are currently viewing our site as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions, articles and access our other FREE features. By joining our free community you will have, access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!


If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please visit the help section.

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old February 14, 2015, 11:36 AM   #1
ExMachina
Member
 
 
Join Date: June 14, 2003
Location: Nashville, TN
Posts: 373
Conicals in cap-n-ball revolvers: why so inaccurate?

With almost no exception, folks report that conicals in Colt reproduction revolvers are not as accurate as round balls. Is there any wisdom here as to WHY that's the case?

Is it simply because conicals are difficult to load squarely? Or is it more because the rifling in repros is not compatible with the longer bullets (I believe original Colts has gain-twist)

Trying to decide on a mold for a '51 Navy repro...

Thank for any help
ExMachina is offline  
Old February 14, 2015, 11:44 AM   #2
MCgunner
Member
 
 
Join Date: December 3, 2005
Location: The end of the road between Sodom and Gomorrah Texas
Posts: 24,019
They're not that great in the Remington, either. So, I have a .454" RB mold for the Colt and Remmy. I still have an old Lee Conical mold, 220 grain in .454, I bought back in the mid 70s, but don't use it. I have a .457" conical AND hollowpoint mold, 220 grains. Seem to have misplaced the HP mold, but it's around here somewhere. I'll stumble on it when I ain't lookin' for it. But, they shoot great in my ROA and are about all I shoot in it. I have some store bought RB for the gun, though.

I don't know why my Piettas don't like conicals, they just don't, so I roll with it and shoot RB. I see really no advantage in shooting conicals unless it's for hunting or something and you want more momentum/penetration. But, I've never shot anything, but paper with my cap and ball stuff. With the conical an 777, though, the ROA is certainly capable. I wouldn't do it with any other cap and ball except maybe a Walker if I had one accurate enough. But, I can shoot a tick off a deer's butt at 40 yards with that ROA.
__________________
"Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote!"
Ben Franklin
MCgunner is online now  
Old February 14, 2015, 11:45 AM   #3
Cooldill
Member
 
 
Join Date: November 19, 2011
Location: Kansas
Posts: 1,859
I think it's because it's so easy to load then cateywompus, hard to put a round ball in crooked.
Cooldill is offline  
Old February 14, 2015, 11:49 AM   #4
ExMachina
Member
 
 
Join Date: June 14, 2003
Location: Nashville, TN
Posts: 373
Quote:
I see really no advantage in shooting conicals unless it's for hunting or something and you want more momentum/penetration
Biggest attraction for me is that the conicals have lube grooves and that they're easier to roll into paper cartridges.
ExMachina is offline  
Old February 14, 2015, 12:15 PM   #5
rodwha
Member
 
 
Join Date: October 28, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,902
My Pietta Remington shoots mine (they are short for their weight), as does my Ruger, about as well as a ball. Pitta changed the rifling twist to 1:16" as the Ruger's are. They used to be 1:30" or so before and people had problems with them not shooting conicals well at all.
__________________
_________________________________________________________________________________
"Were I to leave where else would I go? Your words of life and of truth You hold." - Third Day

Forget not that He left His throne to pay our price, and a hefty one it was indeed!

"I ask not the favor given to Paul," Copernicus said, "I seek not the grace bestowed upon Peter--but I beg the mercy granted to the thief on the cross!" - Alexander Smellie 1899
rodwha is offline  
Old February 14, 2015, 01:34 PM   #6
ExMachina
Member
 
 
Join Date: June 14, 2003
Location: Nashville, TN
Posts: 373
Any specs on the current twist rate of Uberti 1851 Navys? Read on a forum that they might be 1:18 (unlike the 1:32 of their 44 cal revolvers) but cannot confirm.
ExMachina is offline  
Old February 14, 2015, 02:00 PM   #7
Patocazador
Member
 
 
Join Date: July 8, 2012
Location: Central Florida
Posts: 1,953
My ROAs shoot conicals (255 gr.) fairly accurately but not as accurate as the round balls. Lower powder charges seem to equal more accurate loads ... just the opposite of what I need for hunting.
__________________
Life's short, have some fun.

Bob
Patocazador is offline  
Old February 14, 2015, 03:52 PM   #8
45 Dragoon
Member
 
 
Join Date: May 18, 2013
Posts: 568
The .44's have a 16-18 twist as well. They shoot .45 Colt rather well.

Mike
www.goonsgunworks.com
45 Dragoon is offline  
Old February 14, 2015, 06:43 PM   #9
ExMachina
Member
 
 
Join Date: June 14, 2003
Location: Nashville, TN
Posts: 373
Thanks Mike! Sounds like conicals are at least worth a try.
ExMachina is offline  
Old February 15, 2015, 12:56 AM   #10
EljaySL
Member
 
 
Join Date: September 10, 2011
Location: California
Posts: 577
My Pietta 1858 shoots conicals (from the Lee cap and ball mold) somewhat more accurately than round balls *if* I use the right load. The load is much more stout than my cap and ball load for that revolver. As I remember 35 versus 25 grains. I wonder if on some guns the "sweet spot" with a conical is some amount of powder it isn't physically possible to load into the gun, or it's so light there's no point. I think it's just something you have to play with.
EljaySL is offline  
Old February 15, 2015, 01:56 AM   #11
RPRNY
Member
 
 
Join Date: March 8, 2012
Location: Westchester Co NY
Posts: 1,233
Lead alloy. Ball is almost always BHN 7-9. It obturates and loads easily. Unless casting your own or buying very soft lead conicals that you know are in that range, it is likely commercial conicals are much harder. Given the differences between groove size and chamber size in most Italian repros, inaccuracy is inevitable. Length vs twist. Already mentioned above, a long bullet with a sharp ogive is destined for failure in most cap and ball revolvers.

Short, squat, and soft. Not ideal in a woman! But perfect for your cap and ball revolver!
RPRNY is online now  
Old February 15, 2015, 01:57 AM   #12
Jim K
Member
 
 
Join Date: December 31, 2002
Posts: 15,833
The main problem is that there is so little bearing surface. Those who have tried bullets with more bearing surface report better results. FWIW, the folks in olden days had the same problem with conicals.

Jim
Jim K is offline  
Old February 15, 2015, 06:15 AM   #13
Rattus58
Member
 
 
Join Date: January 16, 2013
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 261
Quote:
Originally Posted by rodwha View Post
My Pietta Remington shoots mine (they are short for their weight), as does my Ruger, about as well as a ball. Pitta changed the rifling twist to 1:16" as the Ruger's are. They used to be 1:30" or so before and people had problems with them not shooting conicals well at all.
the dualist1954 shot some and had an excellent group on video.
Rattus58 is offline  
Old February 15, 2015, 10:50 AM   #14
Hellgate
Member
 
 
Join Date: January 11, 2004
Location: Orygun
Posts: 1,323
My ASM 1860 Army is very accurate with the LEE 200gr conical. I doubt there is enough room under the rammer on a Pietta Colt Army to ram in a conical. No problems with the Remingtons and conicals but I have not done any accuracy testing.
__________________
Gun control= OSHA for criminals
With over 15 C&Bs, I've been called the Imelda Marcos of Cap&Ball
Turning money into noise & smoke for over 50 years

SASS #3302 (Life), Regulator
NRA Life
SCORRS
Hellgate is offline  
Old February 15, 2015, 11:29 AM   #15
AJumbo
Member
 
 
Join Date: February 6, 2009
Location: Queen Creek, AZ
Posts: 586
The Buffalo Bullet conicals shoot well in my ROA, but they print WAY high..... like 10 or 12 inches at 25 yards. I am, however, fond of full charges, and found that if I downloaded enough to get the POA and POI somewhat close, there just wasn't enough "oomph" downrange to make me happy.
AJumbo is offline  
Old February 15, 2015, 06:12 PM   #16
rodwha
Member
 
 
Join Date: October 28, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,902
"Short, squat, and soft. Not ideal in a woman! But perfect for your cap and ball revolver!"

"The main problem is that there is so little bearing surface. Those who have tried bullets with more bearing surface report better results."

I wonder if this is what makes mine seem to do well as I cast my own from soft lead, and I incorporated slightly more bearing surface than I typically noticed.

One thing is that mine both have the same powder charge sweet spot regardless of ball or bullet.

These are them:

http://accuratemolds.com/bullet_deta...=45-170C-D.png

http://accuratemolds.com/bullet_deta...=45-195C-D.png

My Pietta Remington 1858 does best with 30 grns of either 3F Olde Eynsford or Triple 7, and my Ruger does best with 35 grns, and this is with both bullets.

I had to modify the Remington's frame to get them to load.
__________________
_________________________________________________________________________________
"Were I to leave where else would I go? Your words of life and of truth You hold." - Third Day

Forget not that He left His throne to pay our price, and a hefty one it was indeed!

"I ask not the favor given to Paul," Copernicus said, "I seek not the grace bestowed upon Peter--but I beg the mercy granted to the thief on the cross!" - Alexander Smellie 1899
rodwha is offline  
Old February 16, 2015, 12:06 AM   #17
Rattus58
Member
 
 
Join Date: January 16, 2013
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 261
Quote:
Originally Posted by rodwha View Post
"Short, squat, and soft. Not ideal in a woman! But perfect for your cap and ball revolver!"

"The main problem is that there is so little bearing surface. Those who have tried bullets with more bearing surface report better results."

I wonder if this is what makes mine seem to do well as I cast my own from soft lead, and I incorporated slightly more bearing surface than I typically noticed.

One thing is that mine both have the same powder charge sweet spot regardless of ball or bullet.

These are them:

http://accuratemolds.com/bullet_deta...=45-170C-D.png

http://accuratemolds.com/bullet_deta...=45-195C-D.png

My Pietta Remington 1858 does best with 30 grns of either 3F Olde Eynsford or Triple 7, and my Ruger does best with 35 grns, and this is with both bullets.

I had to modify the Remington's frame to get them to load.
I'm still waiting to pick up my Pietta "Buffalo"... 3 more days till my "permit" is available. I have a LEE double cavity 220 grain conical that measures also at .456. How is loading this?

[IMG][/IMG]
Aloha...

Last edited by Rattus58; February 16, 2015 at 12:14 AM.
Rattus58 is offline  
Old February 16, 2015, 12:15 AM   #18
Rattus58
Member
 
 
Join Date: January 16, 2013
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 261
Good God.... what happened??//
Rattus58 is offline  
Old February 16, 2015, 01:44 AM   #19
Hellgate
Member
 
 
Join Date: January 11, 2004
Location: Orygun
Posts: 1,323
Rattus58,
The LEE conical 220gr .456 mold is the one made for the ROA. I use the 200gr .454 one for all my Remingtons and the ASM 1860 Army. The .456 might not drop into the chambers if they are typically .446-.448 chambers.
__________________
Gun control= OSHA for criminals
With over 15 C&Bs, I've been called the Imelda Marcos of Cap&Ball
Turning money into noise & smoke for over 50 years

SASS #3302 (Life), Regulator
NRA Life
SCORRS
Hellgate is offline  
Old February 16, 2015, 04:05 PM   #20
rodwha
Member
 
 
Join Date: October 28, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,902
There also may not be enough clearance under the ram, though I'm not certain about that. To gain 20 grns I suspect it's longer than the 200 grn Lee conical meant for the repros.
__________________
_________________________________________________________________________________
"Were I to leave where else would I go? Your words of life and of truth You hold." - Third Day

Forget not that He left His throne to pay our price, and a hefty one it was indeed!

"I ask not the favor given to Paul," Copernicus said, "I seek not the grace bestowed upon Peter--but I beg the mercy granted to the thief on the cross!" - Alexander Smellie 1899
rodwha is offline  
Old February 19, 2015, 06:13 AM   #21
Rattus58
Member
 
 
Join Date: January 16, 2013
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 261
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hellgate View Post
Rattus58,
The LEE conical 220gr .456 mold is the one made for the ROA. I use the 200gr .454 one for all my Remingtons and the ASM 1860 Army. The .456 might not drop into the chambers if they are typically .446-.448 chambers.
I just mic'd my cylinders.... and you're right, they are .445.... so does anyone want a mold from track... double cavity...

Aloha...
Rattus58 is offline  
Old February 19, 2015, 12:56 PM   #22
rodwha
Member
 
 
Join Date: October 28, 2011
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,902
You cab buy a reamer from Brownells that's done by hand that makes it .450 or so. Mine has been reamed to .449" and I keep thinking I'd like to purchase that reamer for if/when I get anything else with small chambers. My bullets drop at .456" and with a .449" chamber (chamfered) it loads easy enough.
__________________
_________________________________________________________________________________
"Were I to leave where else would I go? Your words of life and of truth You hold." - Third Day

Forget not that He left His throne to pay our price, and a hefty one it was indeed!

"I ask not the favor given to Paul," Copernicus said, "I seek not the grace bestowed upon Peter--but I beg the mercy granted to the thief on the cross!" - Alexander Smellie 1899
rodwha is offline  
Old February 19, 2015, 01:07 PM   #23
swathdiver
Member
 
 
Join Date: January 18, 2010
Posts: 461
Quote:
Originally Posted by ExMachina View Post
Trying to decide on a mold for a '51 Navy repro...
Forgive me if this has been revealed already but who made your sixgun and what year was it manufactured?
__________________
"Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." 2 Corinthians 5:17
swathdiver is offline  
Old February 19, 2015, 01:25 PM   #24
ExMachina
Member
 
 
Join Date: June 14, 2003
Location: Nashville, TN
Posts: 373
Quote:
Originally Posted by swathdiver View Post
Forgive me if this has been revealed already but who made your sixgun and what year was it manufactured?
It's a current production Uberti. Supposedly these have a 1:18 twist so I've got a Lee mold on order.
ExMachina is offline  
Old February 19, 2015, 01:46 PM   #25
Surculus
Member
 
 
Join Date: January 3, 2010
Location: Lo-cal So.Cal. where the money is plastic & the people are too.
Posts: 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rattus58 View Post
I just mic'd my cylinders.... and you're right, they are .445.... so does anyone want a mold from track... double cavity...
You could get a Lee sizer kit that fit on their cheapy single-stage press. Not much more expensive than buying another mold, and then you've always got the ability to size boolits down to fit your C&B if you want to try experimenting w/ a different mold...
Surculus is offline  
Reply


Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 11:39 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
vBulletin Optimisation by vB Optimise.
This site, its contents, Shooting Reviews, and its contents are Copyright (c) 2010-2013 Firearms Forum, Inc.
IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER
Although The High Road has attempted to provide accurate information on the forum, The High Road assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of the information. All information is provided "as is" with all faults without warranty of any kind, either express or implied. Neither The High Road nor any of its directors, members, managers, employees, agents, vendors, or suppliers will be liable for any direct, indirect, general, bodily injury, compensatory, special, punitive, consequential, or incidental damages including, without limitation, lost profits or revenues, costs of replacement goods, loss or damage to data arising out of the use or inability to use this forum or any services associated with this forum, or damages from the use of or reliance on the information present on this forum, even if you have been advised of the possibility of such damages.