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Stainless USFA 1860 or not?

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by arcticap, Jun 17, 2009.

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  1. arcticap

    arcticap Member

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    I spied a used USFA 1860 with box at my local gunshop yesterday. It was down behind the counter because the owner still hadn't set the price on it yet.
    I briefly checked it out and asked if it was stainless steel or not and the clerk showed that it attracted a magnet, but that's not a positive indication.
    It has sort of a plain grey steel look to it that isn't like the typical brightly polished current stainless steel models that I'm used to seeing. The steel didn't look really white.
    And at first glance, I noticed that one of the cylinder bolt slots had some surface oxidation.
    IIRC the USFA's were assembled using Uberti parts.
    For comparison, does anyone know whether Uberti's stainless guns are magnetic or not? How about the licensed stainless Colt 1860's that were made with Uberti parts, were they?
    Someone recently reported that their new stainless steel ASM was non-magnetic.
    And I've read threads clearly indicating that there are 2 different kinds of stainless, magnetic and non-magnetic.
    Lastly does anyone have any information about this USFA model and its possible value?
    When I first cocked the gun I thought that it felt a little bit sluggish like maybe the wedge was too tight or it had a weak spring. But it seemed to improve with each cocking. Overall it appeared to be a tight, precision made revolver. I know that members have expressed interest in stainless 1860's, but how to determine whether it's stainless or not?
    Maybe the price will be an indication.
    It has a 4 digit serial number. Maybe an inquiry to USFA would reveal whether they assembled any stainless guns or not.
    It was the first USFA that I've seen. Too bad I didn't have a camera with me.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2009
  2. HUnter58

    HUnter58 Member

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    These two second genration Colt's are magnetic. Most all stainless guns will have a degree of carbon added for strength, which will allow a magnet to stick.
    [​IMG]
     
  3. BHP FAN

    BHP FAN Member

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    oooh BABY!I have never been a big fan of stainless guns,but those are beautiful.
     
  4. Smokin_Gun

    Smokin_Gun Member

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    Arcticap, all I can offer is that the Euroarms Stainless Steel Rem I had the Barrel and Frame were magnetic...the cylinder & webbed loading lever was non-magnetic.
    I have a Ruger Police Service Six in Stainless Steel and it is all magnetic.
    Wish I had more info for you.
    __________________
    "I Smoke Black Powder" "Favor an 1858 Remington"
    Smokin' Gun Mosby's Rangers 43rd Virginia Cavalry C.S.A.
    SASS# 19634
    Admin: Voy.com/60048/
     
  5. Fingers McGee

    Fingers McGee Member

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    2nd Gen SS 1851 Navy, circa 1982 - Barrel & frame - magnetic; Cylinder, backstrap, triggerguard, loading lever - non-magnetic.
    2nd Gen SS 1860 Army, circa 1982 - Barrel & frame - Magnetic; Cylinder, backstrap, triggerguard, loading lever - non-magnetic.
    Uberti SS 1851 Navy, 1982 date code - Barrel - magnetic; Frame, cylinder, backstrap, triggerguard, loading lever - non-magnetic.

    Can't speak to Remmie clones - don't own any in SS (or CCH either for that matter)
     
  6. BHP FAN

    BHP FAN Member

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    My Uberti stainless .357 1890 Remmie seems at least as magnetic as my blued one..
     
  7. kanook

    kanook Member

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    all my stainless stick to a magnet (all Rugers)
     
  8. madcratebuilder

    madcratebuilder Member

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    Neither of my black powder blue books show a stainless 1860 Army by USFA.

    This is for a blue and case hardened model.

    USFA, 1860 Army MSRP $385 100% $355 98% $315 90% $235 80% $195

    I compared the 2nd gen Colt values. this is for a 100% rated firearm.
    1860 blued $775
    1860 blue w/fluted cyl $850
    1860 Stainless steel $900

    At that rate stainless is about an 18% premium on the Colt.
    Uberti shows a 25% premium for stainless.
     
  9. Macgille

    Macgille Member

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    Hunter58, Carbon does't stick to a magnet. 400 series Stainless steel has iron in it which makes it magnetic. It can also rust. 300 series SS is non magnetic. PH (precipitation hardening) SS is magnetic. Carbon makes it hard, Iron makes it magnetic.:)
     
  10. w_houle

    w_houle Member

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    Why is it that hard to get a three screw 1860?
     
  11. madcratebuilder

    madcratebuilder Member

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    Didn't know it was, I have two three screw and two four screw models. I see both on GB.
     
  12. AussieTH

    AussieTH Member

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    w houle. I am not about to disagree with you mate as this is a subject of considerable interest to myself.

    I am inclined to agree with MCB, although the ‘winds of change’ may be blowing. But let us take a simplified look.

    On the current Uberti web site the two 1860s portrayed are four screw models, which means that they are equipped and cut for the fitting of shoulder stocks.

    The data table however gives an option of un-cut versions which by definition almost certainly suggests that they will be three screw – so hop out and order a Uberti and you can have what you want.

    The shoulder stock cutting seems to becoming more popular – why not. The gun remains the gun and the chops in the recoil shields do not amount to much and so you have that fourth big screw head each side – so what (unless it disturbs your grip when shooting).

    Perhaps the thinking of the repro manufacturers are to pile as many options in as standard – not a bad thing.

    But, as with the original 1860. a helluva lot were made and so are the repros. I think there will be a lot of three screws around for a considerable length of time yet.

    Aye

    Tony
     
  13. AdmiralB

    AdmiralB Member

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    Ummm....ALL steel, stainless or otherwise, has iron in it (like, 70% or more).

    It's the grain structure of the various stainless steels that determine whether or not they're magnetic, not what particular constituents make up the alloy.
     
  14. blfuller

    blfuller Member

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    The three screw versions were called "Civilian Models" and Cimarron still lists it...
    Cimarron Civvie 1860
    [​IMG]
     
  15. jmaubin

    jmaubin Member

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    Does anyone make a "Stainless version of the colt 1860" currently???
     
  16. HUnter58

    HUnter58 Member

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    Macgille- thanks for pointing out my error. I tend to type and not review what I've just typed.
    Thanks..

    A major development was the discovery that steel could be made highly resistant to corrosion and discoloration by adding chromium and nickel to form stainless steel. A basic stainless steel has a 'ferritic' structure and is magnetic. These are formed from the addition of chromium and can be hardened through the addition of carbon (making them 'martensitic') and are often used in cutlery.
    It is the nickel which modifies the physical structure of the steel and makes it non-magnetic.
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2009
  17. blfuller

    blfuller Member

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    This is not exactly true. There are 3 main types of stainless, Austenitic (non magnetic), Martensitic (magnetic) and Ferretic (magnetic). The Austenitic is composed of 200 & 300 series alloys and cannot be hardened. The Martensitic is composed of 400 series alloys and is hardenable, these are typically used in firearms.

    The main elements in stainless is iron and chromium. The 300 series stainless have ~12% nickel in the alloy where the 400 series stainless have <1% or no nickel content depending on the specific alloy.
     
  18. arcticap

    arcticap Member

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    No, not AFAIK.

    Today one of the salesman said that they were trying to get info. on the piece from USFA in order to place a value on it, that someone was interested in buying it and that the gun has been held up for a couple of weeks now because of it.
    This salesman said that the pistol was in the white and was part of a project that USFA never followed through on to completion.
    He also said to call back later if I wanted to talk to one of the owners about it.

    If the gunshop sets the price too high then the buyer might back out.
    The gun shop doesn't seem to know enough about this particular USFA gun yet either.
     
  19. K.A.T.

    K.A.T. Member

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    Stainless 1860 being made now.

    Yes there is a stainless 1860 being made now. I just got my new Redhead cat. in the mail. It is a traditions 1860, so I think that makes it a Pietta. They are showing a 1851, 1860, and a 1861 in SS with an antiqued finish. They are saying it is SS, I would imagine any antiqued finish could be knocked off with steel wool, but I don't know that to be a fact. A SS 1860 new for $399 is not bad.
     
  20. Fingers McGee

    Fingers McGee Member

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    I don't believe the description in the catalog is correct. The antiqued Traditions being sold by Cabelas aren't SS. Bass Pro sells the same revolvers.

    I emailed Pietta and asked if they currently made any Colt style SS revolvers. Their answer was:

    sorry. No We don't

    Thank you
    --
    F.lli Pietta s.n.c.

    Historical Weapons Reproduction
    Shotguns Manufacturer

    Tel +39-030-3737098
    Fax +39-030-3737100
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2009
  21. arcticap

    arcticap Member

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    It sounds just like the issue about revolvers being labeled as "nickel" instead of listed as having "nickel plated brass frames".

    These new Piettas may have a "stainless steel finish" just like a silver rifle scope has a "stainless steel finish" when neither are really made from stainless steel.
    But they do look great!
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2009
  22. madcratebuilder

    madcratebuilder Member

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    I think you hit the nail on the head. "stainless steel finish" If it's stainless it would not be a "stainless steel finish" just "stainless steel"
     
  23. Fingers McGee

    Fingers McGee Member

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    I also emailed Traditions an here is their reply.

    Good morning,

    The models you are interested in are the FR185127-1851 .44 cal antiqued, FR1851255-1851 .44 old silver, FR186126-1861 .36 cal Josey Wales model, and the FR186026-1860 .44 cal antiqued. These models are all antiqued in finish, but are not stainless steel. You can check them out on our website.

    Thank you for your interest.

    Traditions Customer Service Team

    Phone: 860-388-4656

    Fax: 860-388-4657

    The listing in the Redhead catalog is obviously wrong when the description for the 1860 states:

    This quality single action .44 caliber replica features an antiqued stainless steel frame and 8'' barrel. It also comes with a distinctive walnut grip and hammer/blade sights. Weight: 2.75 lbs.

    Features:
    Cap and ball black powder replica of the Colt 1860 Army Revolver
    Original was the mainstay sidearm of the Union Army
    .44 caliber
    Antiqued stainless steel frame and 8'' barrel
    Walnut grip

    The answer to the question posed by jmaubin:

    "Does anyone make a "Stainless version of the colt 1860" currently???"

    Is no.
     
  24. jmaubin

    jmaubin Member

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    Thanks for the info guys, well I guess I will just have to keep dreaming.
     
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