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This happened many years ago at the shooting range.

I was observing a shooter shooting what seemed to be a very attractive Single Action, looked like new condition from my vantage point, nice blue and brass back strap. When he put the gun down I could see not brand new, from the one-piece walnut grip which was very darkened and marred up in places. Also noticed it was an open top. Then it appeared to be a conversion.

As he paused, I asked him about the gun. It was an original 1860 Army model, converted to metallic cartridges via the Richards Mason conversion. He knew nothing about the gun, having inherited it from his late step-father. The gun had been cut to a 5" barrel, and expertly polished and blued. The brass had been polished at one time and had some darkening from oxidation. I glanced at the box of cartridges, expecting to see .44 caliber rounds. Instead they were .45 ACP!

He told me they were loaded with a 200 gr. cast SWC and Pyrodex powder. This information had been on papers found with the gun. Did I want to try it?

You bet I did! I loaded and fired two five round cylinders. The smoke was not too bad, accuracy not real good, but sheer pleasure in shooting. Yes, the cylinder was chambered to correctly headspace .45 ACP cartridges. As to bore diameter, I have no idea. I never saw the gun nor the shooter again. But chalked up another bit of experience.

Bob Wright
 
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