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new B/P shooter with some questions

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by jeeptim, Dec 18, 2012.

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  1. jeeptim

    jeeptim Member

    Mar 27, 2010
    Hey Fellas awaiting delivery of my new Pietta 1858 New Army .44 cal. 5 1/2"BBL Revolver, I got the 451 mold made a but load of balls got a tin of #10 caps a lb of pyrodex P fffg and a bag of wool wads. So my questions are.... will this gun use #10 or #11 caps is the powder O.K. and with wads will I still need grease in the cylinder to prevent chain fire. Will I need a tool to remove the spent caps? Oh yeah a loading station I'm a carpenter and would like to make my own was thinking a box with the top either hinged or removable and piano hinges on three sides at the bottom so they fold out with one side fixed most likely the back. Now I have never seen a loading station and have no clue how the gun would mount to load. Going to root around on line and see if I can't sleaze somebody's idea. Am I on the right track?
    I tell you I haven't been this excited about a gun in a long time.
    Thanx for all the helpful on my last post,
  2. brushhippie

    brushhippie Member

    Jun 22, 2011
    Congrats, 10s or 11s? Depends on the revolver really try them both for best fit, Pyrodex is fine, no tool for cap removal...stand? Google black powder loading stand and pics will come up, very simple, Ive got a set of plans around here somewhere Ill see if I can put my hands on it for ya, its not mandatory though. You will find all kinds of opinions on these guns...good luck sorting them out! I use wads sometimes, sometimes not mostly on lighter loads to increase compaction on the powder and the only thing I put over the ball is bore butter to give it some slick em and you really dont need that, for the most part grease over the ball is just a mess. You will love the feel of the shorty remmie, hard to find people who dont like the way they handle.....this IS just the beginning you know.....
  3. damoc

    damoc Member

    Apr 6, 2008
    your balls might be a little small :uhoh:

    most people seem to prefer 454 i think number 10 rem caps seem to be the best in my expierience.

    i dont use wads but use a lot of bullet lube over the ball

    dont use crisco (most people will disagree) but i hate the crap stick to
    natural wax/grease mixtures

    tallow seems good on its own lard and pure beeswax is a good mix i change
    my mix depending on the season but about 60/40 seems pretty good.
  4. Pancho

    Pancho Member

    Oct 23, 2007
    Southwestern, Ohio out in the country about 40 mil
    Jeeptim, first of all did you use 100% lead to mold the balls? If not I'd start over using pure lead. This is important because if you use an alloy it will be harder than pure lead and rough to load.
    As for cap size it varies with guns and cap manufacturers the only way to find out is to try the ones you bought. There is no industry standard for cap sizes between manufacturers.
    The ideal fit would be that the cap can be seated with finger pressure and tight enough to not fall off. Since you bought #10 caps it is likely that the caps will fit or be too small. The most common problem with caps too small is that they don't seat easily and will fail to fire on the first strike firing on the second strike.
    I got ahead of myself. The first thing you should do before shooting the pistol is to clean it, remove the nipples during cleaning and after cleaning replace them with a touch of anti seize. Before actually loading the pistol with powder, wad, and ball cap each cylinder and pointing towards the ground fire all of the caps. If they all go off you've got a good fit, if they go off on the second strike they weren't seated and need to be seated with a wooden dowel.
    This is by no means the end of the conversation but my offering is getting too long.
    Read the stickie at the top of this forum. There is a lot of information from a lot of experienced people there.
    Go to You tube and type in 1858 New Army you will find a lot of videos.
  5. Armored farmer

    Armored farmer Member

    Mar 28, 2010
    South Eastern Illinois
    you are on the right track with a 5.5 Rem. I love mine. I built a stand in the shape of an inverted T, sized to fit my 5.5in remmie on one side and my 8in on the other. I used my air stapler to secure leather straps in the appropriate places to hold the guns securely. I put a carry strap at the top too. If you do carpenter work, it will be easy to put a nice stand together. Mine is a bit crude, but works great.
  6. FreddyKruger

    FreddyKruger Member

    Jun 28, 2011
    you didnt really need to start a new thread... :)


    cant get simpler than that. main thing is that it will hold the pistol upright and solid as you use the lever. its not a necessary tool as many people load while holding the gun in their hands.

    most caps split when fired so arent too hard to remove if they dont just fall off. its the unfired ones that are tricky. ive even just used an empty .223 case, put the mouth over the cap, put the case on an angle so it grabs under the cap and slide it off.

    needle or bent paperclip for nipple holes that dont want to go off after a go or two. usually just crap blocking it. easy to just look before you load up that the holes are all clear.

    the caps should be fine. if they require a second strike to go off, they might be a bit tight and a go at some #11s might be the option.

    in my opinion, over ball grease is more like 80% easier cleaning to 20% prevention of chainfires. I suggested crisco because its a cheap and simple option. i now go to the effort of melting a 50/50 bees wax mix and a little bit of olive oil. the warmer the weather, the more beeswax you need.
  7. arcticap

    arcticap Member

    Mar 20, 2005
    Central Connecticut
    I've found Remington #10's fit like a glove on the Pietta Remington nipples, and that the Hornady .451 factory balls fit and work just fine.
    The CCI #10 caps are known to fit a little bit too tight. In that case pinch some #11's or use a push stick to seat the tight caps as mentioned.
    25 - 30 grains of Pyrodex P is a good load, and if using wads then putting grease over the balls is not necessary. But the cylinder pin will need to be lubed after the first 12 - 18 shots, and maybe after each cylinder full fired beyond that.
    Here's PDF plans for a revolver loading stand which is the first one listed under Shooting Accessories - black powder pistol loading stand. You may need to download it to view it entirely:


    Also, a piece of plastic, wood, rubber or metal pipe can be placed over the ram lever to provide more leverage for the short Sheriff handle to ram the balls with. Being easier to ram is another reason why the .451 balls are probably better for the Pietta 1858 Sheriff model. This is what a ram lever extension looks like that's sold on Gunbroker:

  8. JRs12Valve

    JRs12Valve Member

    Oct 23, 2012
    Around Waco, Tx
    Jeeptim,you don't need a tool to remove spent caps, but you de need a tool to remove the nipples for cleaning. This is the wrench I have, and it's the best one I've tried so far. All steel, and it works like a dadgum charm. Just be sure you get the one for "Revolver" sized nipples.
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