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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Photos of my newest. Frame and Trigger guard are mfg. 1883. Backstrap is mfg.1880. New Colt barrel, cylinder and grips. I think it is an intermediate black powder. Although I have fired about 25 Magtech Cowboy loads through it, most advice is to only use BP. No apparent rust or thinning underside of straps or frame. Question is, I have a chance to get some reduced recoil 45 LC BP boxes. Would this be the safest for this old frame? Also, how far do I need to take this down to clean after shooting. This is all new so I don't want to have left over parts, if you know what I mean. Thanks in advance.
 

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Hammers,

Others may have a different opinion, but even with the new cylinder and barrel, the 'weak link" in the chain is the Frame! I would stay with BP loads! But I don't
see any problem with full BP loads being shot in the revolver. I love the smoke and smell of BP too, LOL!

Cleaning is not so difficult and I perform normal cleaning and watch for any unburned powder areas. The action work area should stay clean, but you may want to check after a couple of shooting sessions. If all is clean, no problem there. One area that tends to be forgotten is around the threads where the barrel comes into the receiver area at the forcing cone end. An old toothbrush, water or water based solvent will take care of this area. I am still using the old WWII corrosive ammo solvent to clean my BP guns.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Abwehr. I ordered 200 rounds of the reduced recoil BP and will start there. It will give me chance to get a cleaning routine down that works. Still a little nervous about taking down the action, but I'm going to a gun show today and may just buy some good tools, mostly to boost my confidence, and hopefully talk to some experts.
 

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...Still a little nervous about taking down the action, but I'm going to a gun show today and may just buy some good tools, mostly to boost my confidence, and hopefully talk to some experts.
The experts are here. I answered about cleaning after blackpowder when you asked in your other post, but you may not have seen it: http://www.coltforum.com/forums/new-members-introduction/71363-hello-new-mizzou-st-lou-2.html#post534763

N
o, you don't have to take them down any more than removing the cylinder. It's not a gunsmithing job to shoot and clean a SAA. Don't disassemble it.
 

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I have to disagree w/not cleaning the action once in awhile because the blk. pwdr. residue builds up & can cause pitting of the parts,here's an example,about 2 yrs ago I re-built one of a pair of colts that were used by Johnny Mack Brown in his western movie career for his daughter,the bore & chambers had been cared for some,but when I got it apart I had to scrap the trigger,the bolt & the sear & bolt spring because they were so badly pitted from blk. pwdr. residue as was the hand but it needed to be replaced because of wear,the only thing that was usable was the hammer.This is not the only time I've experienced this problem.It's also common to run into this problem w/old muzzle loading rifles when u remove the lock from the stock.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
See how sweet this forum is. Gentlemanly disagreements regarding how deep to clean. I love it. But if I'm going to make this a real hobby, I have to take dogface6's advice, get the reference material and take the damn thing apart. I didn't find tools at the gun show (just another lever action I want). Any advice on tool manufacturers for guns. Thanks everyone.
 

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Having been a black powder shooter for over 40 years, I have to agree with Jim that a periodic cleaning of the internals of a SAA is a good thing to do.
The only tools required is a couple of good screw drivers such a the two offered by Peacemakers Specialists or one of the other parts vendors. JMO
 

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I dug out the rusty parts from JMB's blk. pwdr. Colt this evening,my daughter is coming out to the ranch tomorrow & bringing her camera so I can show u the damage the pwdr. residue did to the internal parts,when I get the pictures back from her I'll have to forward them to Wyatt Burp so he can post them on here for me,I don't know how to do that & what's more I'm too damn old to understand this "evil machine".I forgot to mention that about the same time I re-built this Colt I re-built one of the 2 Great Westerns Clint Walker used in his Cheyenne series,he only carried one,the other was a back up in case he broke the other,when I got inside it I found the same problem w/residue but not as bad as JMB's Colt.
 

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Hammers
Welcome to the forum. I'm another who would only use Black Powder in any pre-smokeless frame 1900yr/192,000 serial#. The cleanup isn't the bugaboo a lot think it is. I've been using Mike Venturino's formula of a bottle of Windex with vinegar (NOT AMMONIA) mixed into 5gals of water. I don't mix that much at a time but reduce it. It absolutley eats black powder fouling & cleans up easily. I pretty much clean as normal only I use the Windex solvent. After the gun is clean & dry I lightly lube with Break Free CLP.
I carry a bottle of water with a few drops of dish soap in it & drop my empties in it, you will have to clean your brass too. I use 35grs of GOEX 3FG compressed about 1/8" under a good 255gr cast bullet lubed with SPG. It's a lot of fun & pretty powerful too. Let us know how your gun does.
Good shooting.
 

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Here's pictures of parts Jim Martin asked me to post. The result of lots of black powder shooting. He'll explain them soon.




All these parts were in Johnny Mack Browns colt & as u can see all the rust on the bolt & sear & bolt spring & the other parts are the result of NOT cleaning the blk. pwdr. residue from the action often enough,look @ the forward end of the trigger & you'l see what the residue does to silver plating,only the end of the trigger still shines,then look @ the mainspring,the finish u see is very dull,it was originally a nickle plated mainspring.Clint Walkers Great Western wasn't quite this bad but almost.When I compete in the long range blk. pwdr. class w/one of my Sharps I come home & remove the lock from the stock & strip it down & clean every metal part on the gun before I put it back in the safe.Over the years I've run into the very same problem w/the action parts in quite a few of the old SA's.
 

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I posted early on in this thread how I watch for Black Powder residue in the actiom area. It is hidden and we tend to forget about it. When I clean an action, I apply a light Moly grease on all the moving parts. This grease lubricates, and tends to help from rust beginning. As much as I love Black Powder, I respect what it can do to steel and keep it clean. With the old SAA revolvers that have all the finish gone, and still works fine, the old boys had to constantly wipe them down and oil. From many of the action screw slots, the early owners also took the parts out for cleaning. Honestly, I see more much less problems with the revolvers of the Civil War period having bad actions from rust than the SAA. During the War, Black Powder was common and cleaning was a necessity!

Jim's photos are excellent examples of not cleaning or checking often for rust. I spend too much money for my firearms to let them get in this condition. Heck, i clean all my firearms after a shooting session; Black Powder or Smokeless Powder. I want the firearm ready to go and clean!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks to everyone for their valuable advice. I'm going strictly BP with this gun. I'll see how the reduced recoil loads go, and if comfortable ,and can find some, will try factory BP loads. I think I get the cleaning thing but still not exactly clear how far to tear it down. Some say to completely disassemble at least occasionally to clean everything. No problem with removing the cylinder, plunge rod, grips and backstrap. I was a little worried about taking the trigger guard off the frame and tearing down the action. I've ordered a book from Amazon called Gunsmithing Guns of the Old West that I understand is pretty good, and some better tools. I'll throw some pics up as I disassemble/reassemble. Thanks again.
 

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Hammers,

You will like the book on Gunsmithing Gun of the Old West, fun to read! Also, the SAA is one of the easiest to take apart, clean well and put back together. I actually enjoy taking one of them apart for a complete cleaning. Enjoy the "Old Girl" with all the smoke and smell of Black Powder!!
 

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Yes....like every subsequent post said, "periodic" deep cleaning and inspection is important. But the old timers didn't sit around the campfire with screwdrivers taking their Colts down to the component level every week. Maybe once a year....
 

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Yes....like every subsequent post said, "periodic" deep cleaning and inspection is important. But the old timers didn't sit around the campfire with screwdrivers taking their Colts down to the component level every week. Maybe once a year....
That's why there are so many pitted old colts & heavy re-nickled ones floating around,the movie guns are even worse,several yrs. ago I was working on some of them & I know it's hard to believe but some of the .45 bores had so much crud in them they looked like .38's.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I think I'll just clean after each use. 1st, I have the time. 2nd, I need to get comfortable taking this thing apart and putting it back together. I bought a small can of Ballistrol at a show this weekend, I'm sure it's been covered in the past, but, what are your thoughts on this product?
 
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