Quantcast

Barrel gap adjustment

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by Black Jack Shellac, Oct 11, 2020.

  1. Black Jack Shellac

    Black Jack Shellac Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2019
    Messages:
    35
    A Richland Arms 1858 Remi almost fell into my lap. At the recent Black Powder match someone shows up with some black powder guns to sell. Nearly all were CVA rifles.I did buy one of them a CVA Squirrel Rifle in 36 cal. Un completed kit. Unfired with rust issues.On the outside only though. The other gun I bought is the brasser 1858 Remi. Also a kit gun with light rust inside the barrel. Worn off cold blue on the barrel and the cylinder is in the white . Almost unfired .The barrel/cylinder gap is .016. Usable but I would like it like down to .002 or .004. .Is the only way to do this is to remove the barrel? Cut enough off of the shoulder to allow a full turn so the gap is more than gone? I suppose the end of the barrel would need to be shortened up to fit the cylinder. Any ideas?
    Black Jack Shellac
     
  2. arcticap

    arcticap Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Messages:
    8,058
    Location:
    Central Connecticut
    I wouldn't do anything to it because black powder is said to be more forgiving than having a similar gap with a smokeless revolver.
    Many opinions state not to worry about it unless it's over .020.
    Some of the reasons:
    1. It won't affect accuracy, you may only lose less than 10% velocity and you can simply add some extra powder.
    2. You may damage the frame trying to unscrew the barrel since they can be very difficult to remove.
    3. Shoot it first to evaluate the full effect of the problem.
    4. Posted by junkman_01:
    "I just measured the barrel to cylinder gap on my own '58 Remington (made by PR, brass frame) and it measures .016 inches. It shoots just fine thank you."

    See this thread where Mizar had an .020 gap on a new, otherwise flawless Pietta and he describes the fixes and receives opinions. --->>> https://www.thehighroad.org/index.p...-to-cylinder-gap-on-a-new-1858-pietta.561204/

    Do all of the chambers have the same gap?
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2020
  3. AlexanderA
    • Contributing Member

    AlexanderA Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2011
    Messages:
    7,449
    Location:
    Virginia
    Especially with a brass frame. Probably, at the factory, they have a special fixture to support the frame while the barrel is being installed.
     
    arcticap likes this.
  4. Black Jack Shellac

    Black Jack Shellac Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2019
    Messages:
    35
    Ok It will stay as is for now.I only checked the gap on a couple chambers. That looked to be ok. Do these brass frame 1858s handle stout loads?If I had bought new,I would have a steel frame. The back of the cylinder has a lot more surface area than a 1851 colt. I hope it will not batter the frame.. I need to make a cutter to cut out .450 dia felt wads for this revolver. Anybody got a quick and easy idea for this?
    Black Jack Shellac
     
  5. arcticap

    arcticap Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Messages:
    8,058
    Location:
    Central Connecticut
    It depends how long that you want the gun to last.
    It may be able to handle stout loads but it's recommended to limit the loads to 25 grains or less.
    One poster was loading 30 grains of Pyrodex in his Pietta 1858 but that would add to the wear and tear, especially if it becomes routine.
    Being an Armi San Marco, it has some value as a parts gun, so you might want to be gentle with it.
    The cylinder pin holes can also wear and elongate over time causing the chambers to misalign.


    Folks use cheap punches from Harbor Freight. --->>> https://www.harborfreight.com/9-piece-hollow-punch-set-3838.html?_br_psugg_q=hole+punch
    The 7/16" punch may be slightly small at .4375", but the tip can be ground down a little bit and sharpened if you want to make it larger.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2020
    Mike 56 and robhof like this.
  6. Mike 56

    Mike 56 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Messages:
    643
    I use HF punches, you can make a punch out of a 45 cal case. Sharpen it with a case deburring tool or a pocket knife.
     
    arcticap likes this.
  7. Black Jack Shellac

    Black Jack Shellac Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2019
    Messages:
    35
    Ok I have the HF punches. It looks like I can make 36/45/50 cal wads from this. That should keep me busy. My old spout on my flask throws a 23 gr (measured with a scale) of 3f goex. My small spout gives a charge of 15 gr of the same. I have used the small spout on my 36 .Not very powerfull .More than many cartridge revolvers of the time though. I think the 23 gr spout will be the one for the 44.. I have seen a 15 gr load in a 36 bounce the ball off of a tree. Not impressive
    Thanks for all the help
    Black Jack Shellack
     
  8. Captain*kirk

    Captain*kirk Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Messages:
    337
    Location:
    Waukegan, IL
    25gr is MAX recommended on a Remmy brasser. You will probably do better (and shoot more accurately + burn less powder) using 18-20gr 3F. Best load out of my Remmy brasser is 15gr 3F. The problem with an excessive cylinder gap is that the cylinder moves forward on hammer strike (against the barrel) and then is slammed back on recoil much like a slide hammer. This will *eventually* cause imprinting on the recoil shield, which in turn widens the gap, which in turn...you get the idea. The other problem with Remmies is that the cylinder axis pin tends to foul rather quickly, binding the cylinder and making the pin a mother to pull out. On one occasion I was forced to remove the hammer and drive the pin out through the hammer slot. Do not attempt to bang on the 'ears' of the axis pin with a dowel or other object and a hammer, as the end of the pin can snap off. Don't ask me how I know this. The tighter the gap, the less opportunity for fouling to build up on the pin. The only way I know of to remove end play on a Remmy is to remove the barrel and shave the frame to allow a full rotation but that would have to be your decision. For me, .016 is WAY too much.
     
  9. Black Jack Shellac

    Black Jack Shellac Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2019
    Messages:
    35
    Ok what is to be done? If I can remove the barrel and do all that is needed to close the gap to lets say .002. Will it stay like that? Even with moderate loads? Will it pound its way to a bigger gap?With a colt brasser you can even fit a steel washer to the recoil shield and do away with the damage.
    Black Jack Shellac
     
    Captain*kirk likes this.
  10. skeeterfogger

    skeeterfogger Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2019
    Messages:
    1,186
    If you know someone with an 1858 try their cylinder. If the gap closes the previous owner may have used a cylinder from another or older and it is just a tad short for your year or make. A Euro Arms cylinder in a Pietta will be a tad short. Other way the Euro Arms will need the frame at pin in front trimmed and the gap will close up.
    The washer can help as long as it doesn't hamper hammer strike.
     
  11. Captain*kirk

    Captain*kirk Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Messages:
    337
    Location:
    Waukegan, IL
    If you keep the loads moderate as mentioned in my previous post, you should not see an increase in cylinder gap. The reason many of those gaps are excessive is that 1: heavy load shooters are imprinting the recoil shield (allows the ratchet area to seat deeper instead of flush with the shield) and 2: They are actually stretching the frame. If you keep your loads modest you should avoid this damage for a lifetime of shooting.
     
  12. arcticap

    arcticap Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Messages:
    8,058
    Location:
    Central Connecticut
    As mentioned, the cylinder pin holes can also enlarge and become oval as they wear.
    Their rate of wear would depend on the loads, lubrication and strength of the brass.
    As the holes wear, the chambers become misaligned a little at a time.
    Once that happens the fix would be to install cylinder pin bushings in the frame to realign the chambers with the bore.
    As the gun starts to wear, a .002 gap may interfere with the cylinder rotation more than if it's left at .016.
    Have you fired the gun yet to evaluate how well it shoots?
     
  13. .38 Special

    .38 Special Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Messages:
    3,506
    I once had a competition revolver with a .002 gap. It would bind up from (smokeless) powder fouling on a regular basis. I don't think I would want a percussion revolver gap nearly that tight. Has anyone here tried?
     
  14. Captain*kirk

    Captain*kirk Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Messages:
    337
    Location:
    Waukegan, IL
    Mine are generally .003-.005
     
  15. Mike 56

    Mike 56 Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2007
    Messages:
    643
    If you put a little Gojo hand cleaner over the loaded balls there will be no cylinder binding and the barrel will stay clean. Gojo melts black powder fouling.
     
    Ru4real and windini like this.
  16. Jackrabbit1957

    Jackrabbit1957 Member

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2018
    Messages:
    868
    I tune my revolvers to a maximum gap of .006 with .002 minimal, they run just fine in that range, I have a brass remmie as well, the gap on it falls in the same range. In order to change the gap the barrel has to come off and a few thousandths removed from the shoulder. The question is, is it worth it?
     
  17. windini

    windini Member

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2020
    Messages:
    6
    That sounds like a great idea! Assuming you've done this regularly, have you ever noticed any unpleasant side effects? Just wondering if, since gojo is a cleaner designed to remove oily substances, if it removes desireable lubrication or has a long-term effect on finishes.

    FWIW, I also use gojo or goop as a poison-ivy preventer. It's designed to remove oils...urushiol is an oil, so... seems to work for me if I clean up asap after contact with poison ivy. Not relevant for range day, but another reason to have gojo on hand for field shootin'.

    EDIT: If this drifts toward thread derailment, disregard here, but I'd welcome comments via pm.
     
  18. arcticap

    arcticap Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Messages:
    8,058
    Location:
    Central Connecticut
    Gojo was designed to remove carbon black from the hands of rubber workers in tire plants, which tire rubber does contain both oil and carbon.
    But Gojo also contains mineral oil and petrolatum which provides lubrication of its own, and which are also ingredients of Bore Butter.
    Mike56 posted Gojo's ingredients. --->>> https://www.thehighroad.org/index.p...with-hand-cleaner.869841/page-2#post-11547139
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2020
    Jaymo, windini and Mike 56 like this.
  19. Jaymo

    Jaymo Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2010
    Messages:
    3,569
    I guess I'll have to buy some goop or gojo when I run out of bore butter.
    I do have some soy oil based hand cleaner that I've thought about using as patch lube and for putting over the ball in a revolver.
     
  20. PWC

    PWC Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2018
    Messages:
    849
    Location:
    Central AZ
    I don't have a BP pistol, but as I read, fouling causes the cylinder pin/ interface to bind for removal. Can you pull the pin and make shimstock washers to go between the rear of the cylinder which would force the bbl-cylinder gap to close?
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2020
    robhof and arcticap like this.
  21. Black Jack Shellac

    Black Jack Shellac Member

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2019
    Messages:
    35
    PWC Yes a washer can be made. I have made one out of .010 thick steel. It has a cutout for the hand to move in and a notch for the hammer. I fear that my first attempt needs some improvement.Too crudely made. ,so I'm going to shoot it as is to begin with. I haven't had a 44 remmy for 45 years. This is my first brass anything.
    Black Jack Shellac
     
  22. 45 Dragoon

    45 Dragoon Member

    Joined:
    May 18, 2013
    Messages:
    1,862
    20201017_004542.jpg
    You mention smokless so I'm assuming it is a revolver with a bushing/gas ring. That being the case, the cylinder never comes in contact with the barrel as does an open top or Remington. The fact that there is contact with the barrel means it is somewhat "self cleaning". Therefore, a close barrel/cylinder clearance is conducive for less fouling available for binding the cylinder from fouling. It has worked well for many years. I set all open top revolvers between .0025"- .003" clearance. Remies are what they are, I don't take barrels off or do set backs. But I do have a setup for keeping the fouling from binding the cyl. in Remies. It has to do with "fouling management " . . . giving fouling somewhere to go. The setup seems to work very well, Remies with this system have won a state championship for one of my customers. Here's a pic.

    Mike
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2020
    Mike 56, Captain*kirk and .38 Special like this.
  23. Captain*kirk

    Captain*kirk Member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2010
    Messages:
    337
    Location:
    Waukegan, IL
    Where's a pic?
     
  24. windini

    windini Member

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2020
    Messages:
    6
    Mike, I see the pic, but can't relate it to the "fouling management" you mentioned. I get the concept (I think), but could you explain to this dabbler~novice how the elements in the pic of the frame show that?

    I see the threads from the breech end of the bbl (forcing cone), the cyl. pin, a spot of red at the diagonally-machined fore-end of the cyl. pin (where it meets the frame below the breech). I presume the the smaller the gap, the more the bbl 'wipes' the fowling off the face of the cylinder, preventing it from making its way to the cyl. pin and jamming up the works.

    Am I on track?
     
  25. arcticap

    arcticap Member

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2005
    Messages:
    8,058
    Location:
    Central Connecticut
    Mike explained it in another thread by saying that the fouling migrates to the space that he created on the cylinder pin due to the helical cuts. --->>> https://www.thehighroad.org/index.p...p-revolver-in-the-field.876512/#post-11673202

     
    robhof and windini like this.
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice