Question about Colt Storekeeper's Circa 1890s
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  1. #1
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    Question about Colt Storekeeper's Circa 1890s

    Hi all,

    I'm a historical mystery author who writes a series set in 1900 San Francisco. I try to be thorough in my research, so it really nags at me when a reader points out a perceived flaw in my research. I was hoping you all could put my mind at ease!

    In a scene, I have a character who picked up a Colt Storekeeper from a pawn shop. No other details are given about it, except that I have this happen: '…he opened the cylinder and ejected the cartridges into the palm of his hand.'

    A reader said this in a review about that part (of course I can't respond to the review, but I'd feel better hearing from experts): 'A Colt Storekeeper is Colt SAA with 102 mm barrel and without extractor so Atticus will need pencil or something similar to extract cartridges from their chambers. It is good to do some research when mentioning historical weapons.'

    Based on my research, I read that they did make Storekeepers with the option of an ejector as well as varying barrel lengths. But the Sheriff's model doesn't have one. Am I correct? Also, I read in another forum that it is possible to tilt a Storekeeper at a 45 degree angle and the cartridges can slide right out, or at least enough to get out with a fingernail.

    I'm no expert, so I appreciate your answers.
    Last edited by HistoricalResearcher; 03-24-2020 at 03:17 PM.

  2. #2
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    Hi, people do like to be accurate about some crazy things.

    If your character is removing LOADED rounds, they will fall out of the chambers as he turns the gun facing up, with the gate open. If shot, they sometimes stick and do need something to push them out. I would leave the sentence as it is. You could change "ejected" to be "dropped" I guess.
    sumthin_nu likes this.

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    well first things first
    this individual does not know what they are talking about
    A Colt Storekeeper is Colt SAA with 102 mm barrel and without extractor so Atticus will need pencil or something similar to extract cartridges from their chambers.
    It is good to do some research when mentioning historical weapons.'

    Millimeters were not used in the past especially in the place and time u are referring too
    this is only a recent addition
    you will only need something to remove the rounds after they are fired as unfired rounds will easily fall out when the cylinder it turned when the gun is half cocked and the cylinder is able to be turned....
    when the hammer is down the cylinder will not move...
    i agree that accurate info is key when writing
    from my memory there is no ejector assembly on the storekeepers but i could be wrong too
    i think they are like the sheriffs models
    God Bless,John
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    Neither the Storekeeper nor the Sheriff's Model had ejector rods, but owners of these guns usually had a pencil or a piece of dowel rod to 'punch' the empty cartridges out of the cylinder. Also, both Storekeepers and Sheriff's models came in many different barrel lengths. Many collectors often refer to these guns as "ejectorless".

    Also, I guess it would be possible in some cases for the empty cases to drop out of the cylinder if the gun were to be tilted backward. I say leave the sentence as you have written it.
    jringo8769 likes this.

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    They would have to be ejected one at a time as the cylinder was rotated past the loading gate. Live rounds would most likely fall out, spent casings most likely would need to be poked out.
    jringo8769 likes this.

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    If you say he “ejected the cartridges”, I think you are correct without any changes. “Cartridges” are generally assumed to be loaded, live rounds and they would fall out. “Spent cartridges” are the remaining brass casings but you didn’t say that. I think you’re OK.
    Last edited by Blackjack33; 03-24-2020 at 07:48 PM.
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    Thank you so much for your replies! Really helpful information here and details to keep in mind when writing in future. There was one spent cartridge in the cylinder and the other four were live rounds. But I wasn't really specific on how the character got the cartridges out, so maybe he did use a pencil on the casing…

    Still annoyed with myself for not catching that detail though. Here was one of the articles I was going off of: https://gunblast.com/JaredSchmidt_USFA-Shopkeeper.htm

    Specifically this quote:
    The Shopkeeper’s model which is the subject of this article is of the same idea of a short fast handling sixgun, but it has the addition of an ejector rod. The ejector rod in my opinion makes it a much more appealing choice. It has a 3.5” barrel which is as short as you can go and still get some extraction on the fired cases. The barrel being 1 ¼” shorter than the shortest standard S.A.A. makes a marked difference in the handling characteristics of the piece. Since I am not known for carrying a wooden dowel around in my pocket I decided that the Shopkeeper was the one for me.

    But now I realize he's talking about a reproduction model with an ejector. Correct?

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    I believe this is what you are looking to model your story after:
    https://www.gunsinternational.com/gu...n_id=101358666
    The Sheriff's model and Shopkeeper are basically the same thing. There is no ejector. On some firearms the cylinder pin could easily be removed and used to poke the chambers empty. Not so in this case as it has the original "blackpowder frame" and the cylinder pin has a retainer screw making removal anything but quick and easy. In this case something else would be needed to eject the cases.

    You can see the difference. The new USFA clone has the ejector housing. The original Colt does not.

    04.jpgSheriff-s-Model-Antique-Colt-Single-Action-45-Colt-Pearl-Grips-Houston-Texas_101245810_19891_F3.jpeg
    Last edited by Agarbers; 03-24-2020 at 09:11 PM.

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    I am curious where you are located. Nothing beats holding one in you hand or actually shooting it. There may be a SASS or NCOWS club near you that you could go and watch and maybe even try a period model.

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    If the reviewer was that critical about ejecting the cartridges, I'm surprised he didn't say anything about "opening the cylinder." The loading gate is opened. The cylinder remains where it is and does not "open."

    NOTE: I'm not criticizing your writing. Just noting how the reviewer appears to be the type who needs to show how he's an "expert". He'd probably fit in well on internet gun forums .
    Rick Bowles, BoSabbath and Rick like this.
    My areas of expertise are firearms and Latin females. Not necessarily in that order.


 
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