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Way OT: Quigley Down Under

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  • #16
    Originally posted by akajun View Post
    I haven't seen it in a while, but If your basing the cap and ball revolvers on sight alone lots of them were converted to cartridge by various gunsmiths back then. Then there's good old Wild Bill who preferred his cap and ball Navy Colts till the day he died.
    I do remember a a scene in the movie where an old man was helping him reload and he said they could use 45 cal bullets from a British rifle 450 martini? So I'm guessing 1870's 80's
    He said it would take the British .455 #2 ball, I have no idea if that was what was used in the Martini-Henry. Ball, that also referred to conical formed bullets. The Martini was used from the 1870's until the Lee Metford came in around 1890 so that doesn't narrow down the date.
    The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

    Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

    Southwestern Ontario. Canada

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Willy View Post
      I think they were cap and ball revolvers that were converted, not muzzle loading revolvers.
      Cap and ball revolvers were loaded at the front of the cylinder where the ball was forced into cylinder by use of the under barrel lever. Later single action cartridge revolvers used a somewhat similar looking spring loaded cartridge case ejector under the barrel.
      You could buy an update kit. Have a gunsmith install the loading gate and then drop in a spacer plate and then the new cylinder and you had a cartridge pistol. These could be converted back to cap and ball by removing the new cylinder and spacer and drop in the old cylinder, if it was necessary to do so IE: Damn I forgot to buy more cartridges.

      Here is a historical note on old west pistols.

      All the movies/TV show the "cowboys" using Colt Peacemakers (single action army) pistols but in actuality most people carried old style cap and ball pistols, probably converted (but many used them as is until they were worn out) or by far, new Smith and Weston pistols. Colt didn't catch up to S&W in pistol sales until the 20th century. There were also a lot of other manufactures selling relatively small orders of pistols in the old west.

      Your always in danger of learning something new here. Be careful.
      The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

      Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

      Southwestern Ontario. Canada

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      • #18
        Originally posted by loose nut View Post

        I believe the first large cal. Winchester was the 1886 chambered in the brand new 30-30 cartridge, the date might be a bit off. Those look like 45-70's.
        His chopped up rifle was actually a 44-40 as most Winchesters were at that time. The cartridges are 45-70. Don't know who was doing the thinking there.
        I think they stole the lever design from the Rifleman but slightly modified it.

        JL...........

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        • #19
          I believe John Wayne used a large loop lever action Winchester, ('92 I think) as early as 1939 in the movie Stagecoach.
          Wanted Dead or Alive and the Riflemen both debuted in 1958 so they both likely borrowed heavily from the some of John Wayne's movies as there were several with him using that style of lever.
          Home, down in the valley behind the Red Angus
          Bad Decisions Make Good Stories​

          Location: British Columbia

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          • #20
            Wherever it came from -- the Rifleman made it famous...

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            • #21
              Suspending disbelief for being a few years off on the firearms vintage is a lot easier than suspending belief in the laws of inertia like Marvel movies require. I can buy into that a guy like Deadpool can't be killed, but not that he can toss his girlfriend 200 ft down 'protected' in a box and she's fine rather than a pool of red jam. Yeah, I was the kid who wondered how Steve Austin could lift a car with his bionic arm if he didn't have a bionic spine.
              Location: Jersey City NJ USA

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              • #22
                Originally posted by JoeLee View Post
                His chopped up rifle was actually a 44-40 as most Winchesters were at that time. The cartridges are 45-70. Don't know who was doing the thinking there.
                I think they stole the lever design from the Rifleman but slightly modified it.

                JL...........
                I don’t think so the 1886 was never chambered for the 30-30, the 1892 which was chambered for the black powder 38-55WCF which is what Josh carried on his belt. Which is period correct. The 1886 was chambered for the 45-70, 45-90, 40-65, 38-70, 40-82 WCF and the great old 50-110 WCF. All black power cartridges.
                CH

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                • #23
                  Hi,

                  Depending on where you might be on this planet during the time frame of the movie, cap and ball revolvers could be found in use up to the turn of the century and even a bit beyond. While the brass cartridge obsoleted muzzle loading firearms overnight, it didn't mean they all disappeared at once because of it.

                  The movie rifles were built on the Sharps 1874 Sporting action. And since Selleck claims it's an experimental rifle and ammunition at the beginning of the movie, we could date the movie to 1875/76, (the .45-110 was introduced in 1876), time frame as a decent estimate.

                  Considering a pistolero's wallet and location, he may or maynot be able to afford one of them fancy new cartridge pistols or rifles. And this being set in the Australian Outback, cartridges would have been difficult to procure also. Most wannabe pistoleros would also have a tough time affording a conversion for his surplus pistol. The cheapest and easiest being having a gunsmith/mechanic turn off the back end of a cylinder and replace it with a removable plate to act as a spacer. I have a more modern conversion for a Remington New Army allowing the use of .45 Colt centerfire ammunition based on such designs. Though they would have used a rimfire version with a .451" lead bullet with a rebated base to fit inside the the brass cartridge that fit the chambers. Just like .22 rimfire ammunition we see today.

                  In the final gunfight scene, when the baddies take away his beloved Sharps, they retrieve a .44 cal Colt Army from a table on the porch to stuff in his belt. It clearly shows a powder flask, capper, and nipple wrench with the revolver. So given the time frame and location, muzzleloading firearms could still have been quite common.
                  If you think you understand what is going on, you haven't been paying attention.

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                  • #24
                    This says it was a model 92 44-40. Fourth paragraph down.
                    It it also says the cartridges on his belt were 45-70 because they were more visually impressive.

                    https://m.imdb.com/title/tt0051327/trivia

                    JL....
                    Last edited by JoeLee; 03-09-2021, 07:40 PM.

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by COMachinist View Post

                      I don’t think so the 1886 was never chambered for the 30-30, the 1892 which was chambered for the black powder 38-55WCF which is what Josh carried on his belt. Which is period correct. The 1886 was chambered for the 45-70, 45-90, 40-65, 38-70, 40-82 WCF and the great old 50-110 WCF. All black power cartridges.
                      CH
                      Right rifle wrong cartridge. If I remember right and that is iffy, the 30-30 was the first smokeless cartridge, which was specifically designed for Winchesters. Hence the round nose for tube magazines. So 1890's for sure. My bad.
                      The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

                      Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

                      Southwestern Ontario. Canada

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        Originally posted by JoeLee View Post
                        This says it was a model 92 44-40. Fourth paragraph down.
                        It it also says the cartridges on his belt were 45-70 because they were more visually impressive.

                        https://m.imdb.com/title/tt0051327/trivia

                        JL....
                        I suppose that the producer/armourers etc. decided that the audience wouldn't know the the 45-70's wouldn't fit or that a 1870-'s time period wouldn't have a model 92 rifle. Most people probably couldn't tell the difference between a proper 66 or 72 model and the 92.
                        The shortest distance between two points is a circle of infinite diameter.

                        Bluewater Model Engineering Society at https://sites.google.com/site/bluewatermes/

                        Southwestern Ontario. Canada

                        Comment

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