How can I improve the accuracy of my 1858?

Discussion in 'Blackpowder & Musket' started by saviorslegacy, Dec 2, 2010.

  1. saviorslegacy

    saviorslegacy New Member

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    My 1858 is not all that accurate. I use 15 grains of powder and shoot .45 balls to prevent a chain fire. What can I do to make it more accurate?
     
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2010
  2. whtsmoke

    whtsmoke New Member

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    what do you call accurate? what is it doing now?
     

  3. saviorslegacy

    saviorslegacy New Member

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    About 30 feet back or so it is shooting around a 1 foot group. I can't figure out what the problem is.
     
  4. whtsmoke

    whtsmoke New Member

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    could be you are ussing thr wrong size of ball, are you using the reccomended size? try and up your powder charge to around 25 to 30 grains of powder and see how it shoots, 15 grains is way below the normal charges.
     
  5. GNLaFrance

    GNLaFrance New Member

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    Neither can we, because there's so much information you're not giving us here. Who made this revolver? When was it made? What brand balls? What is their exact diameter? What brand of powder? Is the barrel free of lead buildup? What are you using for lube?
     
  6. orangello

    orangello New Member

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    You could stand closer to the target.
    ;)
     
  7. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Load is WAY off. for a .45 cal revolver, a load closer to .40 grains would be appropriate. If shooting round ball, ball should be oversized- shaving a ring of lead off the ball when seating. Scrub the bore good if you have not. If shooting conodial bullets, use a decent lube on them. Are you using a greased wad under the bullet. What is your topping lube?

    And the biggie- DID YOU READ THE OWNERS MANUAL?
     
  8. Hawg

    Hawg New Member

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    If you're using 15 grs. of powder and no filler you have an air space between powder and ball. Not a good thing with black powder. Either raise your powder charges or use a filler. I use 30 grs. and .454 balls. Do not use any petroleum based lube in the bore or chambers. Doing so won't affect accuracy but will make an easy cleaning job hard. Either use a lubed wad under the balls or a vegetable based lube over them to keep fouling soft and help prevent chain fires. I think once you get rid of that air space you will find accuracy greatly improved. Black powder needs to be compressed. An air space creates a dangerous situation.
     
  9. saviorslegacy

    saviorslegacy New Member

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    Sorry for the late reply.
    It is a Pietta.

    Yes, I have read the manual. It recommends a maximum of 15 grains. I have no idea why. I have been told by others that it is undercharged but I tend to go with what I have been told is safe. I tried 20 grains once and nothing happened, so IDK. If you guys and the other dudes are positive that it can handle a larger charger, then I might be up for an experiment.......

    I shoot .454 balls.

    I have set the balls down on the charge the best that I could.

    Yes, there is lead build up after I shoot the revolver. At least, I think it is lead build up.

    I have used a soy bean based wax to prevent a chain fire, but most of the time I shoot over sized balls to fix the problem.
     
  10. rdstrain49

    rdstrain49 New Member

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    My Pietta likes lubed wads rather than lube over ball, Pyrodex rather than Geox or Swiss BP. It will shoot one ragged hole at 25 yards, however, point of aim is not even close to point of impact. Don't remember the load off the top o' my head, but it's in the 25 gr range. The next one will be a Uberti, due to the dovetail front sight.
     
  11. h8dirt

    h8dirt New Member

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    The '58 Remington clones are some of the best shooting models because of the solid top strap. First, make sure your bore is bright clean between shooting sessions. For reference, I use 18 grains of FFFg under an equal amount (by volume) of cream of wheat with a 0.457" pure lead round ball that seats about 0.030" below flush with the cylinder face and then smear a thin layer of Crisco (or similar) on top of the ball. The Crisco lubes the bore and prevents cross ignition between chambers (an ugly thing). Mine will easily shoot 10 shot groups under 2" at 25 yards (much better than I can hold it these days). I hope this helps.
     
  12. stelliott80

    stelliott80 New Member

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    Great question. Ditto on much of what was said here. I've learned some of it the hard way!
    I have two 1858s made by Pietta, and a couple Navy revolvers (also made by Pietta). I use Pyrodex pellets (because I've become too lazy to measure real black powder!), which are 30 gr. equivalent to FFFg. I place a wad on top of the pellets and a .454 ball on top of that. I then place a liberal amount of Bore Butter on each cylinder. I actually experienced a chain fire once using wads with no Bore Butter. Kind of scary. Didn't hurt anyone or my gun (much), but scared the bejeezus out of me enough to be a tad over cautious from then on...
    These things are fun to shoot! I really can't speak to your accuracy problem except to agree with others that your powder load is perhaps a bit low. And herein lies what I found odd from the start: The Pietta manual (on p. 10, if they are still printing the same one I've had for years) says the cylinder capacity is 12-15 gr. of FFFg and recommends a .454" round ball. BUT the Cabela's manual, which also came with at least one of my pistols, sets the cylinder capacity at 35 gr. of FFFg black powder OR 28 gr. of Pyrodex with a .451" round ball. So go figure, since that's a decent amount of difference between the two manuals... I've shot my 1858s with the "max" listed by Cabela's with no problem, and the accuracy is not bad (although I couldn't give you a measurement off the top of my head, as it's been a while since I shot it at paper that I could measure).
    Best of luck to ya! Hope you remedy your accuracy issue.
     
  13. Hawg

    Hawg New Member

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    .44 Colt or Remington. 30 grs. of Pyrodex, .454 ball, lubed wad or over ball lube(either one but not both). Coke cans at 25 yds. no problem.:cool:
     
  14. whtsmoke

    whtsmoke New Member

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    Hawg said 30 grs of fffg is what to use.
     
  15. Hawg

    Hawg New Member

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    It's what I use. He may find another load better suited for him. You can't overload a steel frame revolver with bp or Pyrodex. As long as you can seat the ball far enough to turn the cylinder you're ok.
     
  16. whtsmoke

    whtsmoke New Member

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    ive wanted to say the same thing about overloading a 58 but have hesitated to do so. We buy things today that we like but dont take time to do a little research to become educated about it. I detest those pellets I guess being raised on blackpowder and round balls will do that to you. i still shoot round ball rifles and smoothbore flintlocks I just can't see myself with one of those plastic stocked inlines with a scope on it. imho
     
  17. oldfogey4ever

    oldfogey4ever New Member

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    Do you have a brass frame or a steel frame (asking for recommendations without supplying information is a little like a blind man asking what the color green looks like)?
    If you have a steel frame, consider going up to 28 grains (then you only need @ 10 gr. of corn meal to bring the .454 round ball up to chamber mouth when seated). See if that increases your accuracy.
     
  18. oldfogey4ever

    oldfogey4ever New Member

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    Last edited: Jan 9, 2016