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CA357 06-18-2008 11:38 PM

Please Tell Me About .44 Colt
I may have bought a new/unfired Pietta 1858 in .44, with a conversion cylinder to .44 Colt. I have to fess up, I originally thought it was a .45 Colt conversion. I know it couldn't be, but nevertheless, my word is good, so I may be the new owner of this handgun.
I hadn't planned on getting into black powder right now, if so, I have a buddy that's selling an unfired 1858 Pietta in .36 caliber that he'll practically give me.
Okay, I'm rambling.

If I wind up with this revolver, my immediate plan would be to use the conversion cylinder in it and shoot .44 Colt ammo. I don't reload at this time, and may not be able to get into it for quite some time if at all.
Here's a question for you black powder experts. Can I shoot something like Black Hills or Ultramax smokeless Cowboy loads or does it have to be black powder only?

I'd also appreciate any insight you can give me into this revolver and caliber in general. I'm familiar with and own modern revolvers, but I'm a complete rookie at black powder stuff.

BTW, I can pick up the .36 cal Pietta for $150. Should I get it?

Thank you gentlemen. :)

dgray64 07-03-2008 10:41 PM

Look it over real well and determine some details. Is it brass or steel? Items like that, then go to and go to their "Hunting" site and from there go to pistols and you will see all that they have. Their prices are probably the best on these so you can get an idea.

As the the other question...sorry, I don't know. I have two .44s. One is an 1851 Navy Pietta that I got from Cabelas for $139, and the other is an 1860 Army by Euro. I like both of them, but both are front feeders, not cartridge guns. They are fun to load and shoot using black powder or the substitutes.

The .44s make big holes and are pretty accurate. The Navy shoots to point of aim, while the Army shoots very high. The recoil is slight. Enjoy.

Dave :)

CA357 07-04-2008 01:58 AM

Thanks Dave, I apprectiate it.

RL357Mag 07-05-2008 07:21 PM

Don't use smokeless powder in a BP Richards conversion. Those conversions were introduced during the black powder era and were never intended to be loaded with smokeless powder. The Colt design is not strong enough because of the lack of the "top-strap" found on the Conferderate Spiller & Burr brass framed, and later Remington steel framed Army revolvers. Some of the Colts were even brass framed, and using black powder loads, over time the brass stretched and the gun would shoot out of timing. The only black powder revolver built strong enough for smokeless loads is the Ruger Old Army - and that's because it is built on the Blackhawk frame.

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