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View Poll Results: Which caliber 1873?

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  • 357 Magnum

    40 43.48%
  • 45 Colt

    52 56.52%
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Thread: Which cartridge in 1873 and why?

  1. #21
    Boolit Master


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    38-40 of course...or maybe 44-40. Big fan of 45 Colt and would like a 92 in 357 but the 1873 is a whole 'nuther animal.
    Endowment Life Member NRA, Life Member TSRA, Member WACA, NRA Whittington Center, BBHC
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  2. #22
    Boolit Master



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    Quote Originally Posted by Le Loup Solitaire View Post
    The linkage in the 73 is not a strong one and the pressures that go with the 357 or 45 LC are not a good idea.
    Same as you I have always read and believed that the toggle link design is very weak but since Uberti chambers 357, 45 Colt and 44 Mag I am starting to believe that with modern metallurgy the toggle link design may be stronger than most give it credit. The Italian proof standards are very stringent. Even if Uberti tried to pass off questionable safety margins the Italian National Proof House in Gardone Italy would not.

    http://www.bpcr.net/site_docs-results_schedules/documents/pedersoli_proof_rules_and_allowable_limits_09-04.htm

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commiss...Feu_Portatives

  3. #23
    Boolit Master



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    Quote Originally Posted by Clay M View Post
    I am not particularly keen on either one in a 73.My choice would be a .38/40 win
    I like original chambering for that rifle,and the .38/40 is very accurate and fun to shoot..
    The .32/20,.38/40 or .44/40 and I would buy one. Otherwise no.
    My sentiments also.

  4. #24
    Boolit Master
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    I wouldn't trust a '73 in 357 or 44 magnum for factory ammo. I picked 45 Colt because I have a Schofield clone in 45 Colt and I will load it very conservatively. I bought it after watching Tom Selleck in CROSSFIRE TRAIL for the 100th+ time.

    I trashed a nice 44 magnum VAQUERO 3 years ago. I still curse every time I look at the wreckage. AND the price on them is through the roof IF you can find one.

  5. #25
    Boolit Master

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    Neither. The action was designed for .44-40, so the significantly fatter .45 Colt
    compromises the barrel shank thickness, and pushes the extractor farther out
    than intended originally. Also, the .45 Colt has a TINY rim, since it was designed
    to be pushed out of a 1873 Colt, NOT used to extract the case. I have no direct
    experience on this but would worry that the extraction would be unreliable.

    The pressures of the .357 are WAY, WAY above what the original design
    intended and the action is very weak, all stress going through the pivot
    pins in the links.

    Get a .38-40 or .44-40, original cartridges, will feed better and keep pressures
    within the range that the action was designed for, keep extractor and barrel
    shank thickness under control.
    If it was easy, anybody could do it.

  6. #26
    Boolit Master
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    If .357 Magnum and .45 Colt are the only choices, then I choose "neither". The Model 1873 should only ever be chambered for .44-40, .38-40, or .32-20.


  7. #27
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by MtGun44 View Post

    The pressures of the .357 are WAY, WAY above what the original design
    intended and the action is very weak, all stress going through the pivot
    pins in the links.

    Get a .38-40 or .44-40, original cartridges, will feed better and keep pressures
    within the range that the action was designed for, keep extractor and barrel
    shank thickness under control.
    If they're chambering modern '73's in magnum calibers, they're no doubt safe to handle them. Think about Colt SSA. We know they were designed for black powder, yet with modern steel they can handle .357.

    There's no relationship between the metallurgy of 1873, some early Winchesters were actually just iron, and the high strength steels of today.

    I prefer classic cartridges, but any they chamber them in will be safe.

  8. #28
    Boolit Man
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    why you asking for this Calibers ? the `73 was never chambered for a 357 or .45 Colt
    take the 44 WCF and never look back

    Klaus

  9. #29
    I'm not interested in loading for a new cartridge really. I like the idea of keeping with what I have.
    So now for the background. I have a marlin 1894c in 357 and I've been thinking of trading (up?) to an 1873 but I'm not sold on getting into a new cartridge. The other option I guess is a 44 mag which will match my 629-4 which I load for.
    The comments above about strength of the firearms I'm sure is true to an extent due to design but I wouldn't imagine they're using the same steels and manufacturing techniques they did in 1873. I'm sure just the increase in steel strength it would be able to handle the loads or they wouldn't bother.
    I guess I need to handle an 1873 at the local shop and to shoot a buddy's at the range next week (if it's open) to see if I fall in love.
    Thanks for all of the feedback guys. Keep em coming.

  10. #30
    Boolit Master


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    I like staying with cartridges I'm set up for as well but I do venture off into a new one all too often. What are your intended uses for the new 1873? Targets, plinking, hunting, CAS events?
    Endowment Life Member NRA, Life Member TSRA, Member WACA, NRA Whittington Center, BBHC
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    Some of my favorite recipes start out with a handful of depleted counterbalance devices.

  11. #31
    Boolit Master
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    .357
    love mine





  12. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by TXGunNut View Post
    I like staying with cartridges I'm set up for as well but I do venture off into a new one all too often. What are your intended uses for the new 1873? Targets, plinking, hunting, CAS events?
    target every week and then some small game hunting. Possibly for deer if I had the chance to get out west
    no rifle for deer in Massachusetts

  13. #33
    Boolit Master


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    I like the 1873 but the 1894C is a fine little rifle, as you well know. If I had a good .357 94C in the stable I wouldn't trade it for an 1873, but I might add a good 1873 if I had the cash on hand.
    Endowment Life Member NRA, Life Member TSRA, Member WACA, NRA Whittington Center, BBHC
    Smokeless powder is a passing fad! -Steve Garbe
    I hate rude behavior in a man. I won't tolerate it. -Woodrow F. Call, Lonesome Dove
    Some of my favorite recipes start out with a handful of depleted counterbalance devices.

  14. #34
    Boolit Master 35 Whelen's Avatar
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    First, I bought a Uberti 1873 .44 Magnum and worry not in the least as to whether or not it can stand the pressure of the cartridge. If it couldn't they wouldn't produce it.
    Now as to the original question, it really boils down to intended use. If all you're going to do is take it to the range, by all means get a 357. Otherwise, a Colt.

    35W
    "Only accurate rifles are interesting." -Col. Townsend Whelen.
    NRA Life Member
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  15. #35
    Boolit Master
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    For the 1873, I agree with the many here who have said 44/40, 38/40 or 32/20. The '73 in 38 Special is fine but may take some tuning.

    For 357, 45 Colt, or 44 Magnum, the Winchester '92 or Marlin are a much better choice.

    Why may I ask did you choose an 1873?

  16. #36
    Boolit Master


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    If I was a serious SASS cowboy action competitor then the .357 gets the not with pip squeak 38 SPL loads being used. Since I am not a serious SASS shooter and both my SAAs are chambered in 45 Colt I went with the 45 Colt. My Uberti M73 has the heavier 20" full octagon barrel and a 3rd gen toggle upgrade. I shoot my standard 45 Colt load for my revolvers in the M73 also. That is a 200 gr RNFP over 7.3 gr of Bullseye. Runs 1200 fps out of the rifle and 950 out of the revolvers. Accuracy is excellent. The M73 feeds those 45 Colt loads slicker than snot and I've not had a single malfunction. Had they had the 45 Colt brass "back in the day" and the M73 had been chambered in it the 44-40 and 38-40 would have faded in obscurity a lot quicker than they did. Colt would not have had to chamber the SAA "Peace Maker" in 44-40 for the dual handgun/rifle combination.

    Larry Gibson

  17. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by Ken in Iowa View Post
    For the 1873, I agree with the many here who have said 44/40, 38/40 or 32/20. The '73 in 38 Special is fine but may take some tuning.

    For 357, 45 Colt, or 44 Magnum, the Winchester '92 or Marlin are a much better choice.

    Why may I ask did you choose an 1873?
    because it's probably the most beautiful rifle ever designed.
    i know the marlin 1894 really has it all over the 1873 mechanically. i actually have an 1894C in 357 and love it. i just think the 1873 is super beautiful

  18. #38
    Boolit Master 35 Whelen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Gibson View Post
    If I was a serious SASS cowboy action competitor then the .357 gets the not with pip squeak 38 SPL loads being used. Since I am not a serious SASS shooter and both my SAAs are chambered in 45 Colt I went with the 45 Colt. My Uberti M73 has the heavier 20" full octagon barrel and a 3rd gen toggle upgrade. I shoot my standard 45 Colt load for my revolvers in the M73 also. That is a 200 gr RNFP over 7.3 gr of Bullseye. Runs 1200 fps out of the rifle and 950 out of the revolvers. Accuracy is excellent. The M73 feeds those 45 Colt loads slicker than snot and I've not had a single malfunction. Had they had the 45 Colt brass "back in the day" and the M73 had been chambered in it the 44-40 and 38-40 would have faded in obscurity a lot quicker than they did. Colt would not have had to chamber the SAA "Peace Maker" in 44-40 for the dual handgun/rifle combination.

    Larry Gibson
    Very well put. My first CAS rifle was an 1873 chambered in .44 Special. I slicked it up inside, lightened the springs a bit, and installed a short stroke kit. That rifle was SLICK and never once malfunctioned. On the other hand, my wife's '92 chambered in .357, was prone to jams and throwing a cartridge out instead of chambering it.
    The OP asked specifically about the 357 and 45 Colt, not the 32-20, 38-40, or 44-40. Another real down side to these cartridges that rarely gets mentioned is they must be lubed prior to sizing, just like any other bottleneck case. Due to the volume of shooting I do, that alone is a deal breaker for me.

    35W
    "Only accurate rifles are interesting." -Col. Townsend Whelen.
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  19. #39
    Boolit Master maxreloader's Avatar
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    Looking for Ideal molds 419181 (44 Evans Long) and 375167 (38-72)
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  20. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by 35 Whelen View Post
    Very well put. My first CAS rifle was an 1873 chambered in .44 Special. I slicked it up inside, lightened the springs a bit, and installed a short stroke kit. That rifle was SLICK and never once malfunctioned. On the other hand, my wife's '92 chambered in .357, was prone to jams and throwing a cartridge out instead of chambering it.
    The OP asked specifically about the 357 and 45 Colt, not the 32-20, 38-40, or 44-40. Another real down side to these cartridges that rarely gets mentioned is they must be lubed prior to sizing, just like any other bottleneck case. Due to the volume of shooting I do, that alone is a deal breaker for me.

    35W
    you hit the nail on the head here. I shoot a lot. I don't always make the best shots because I'm too busy pouring through cartridges about as fast I can. For fun range guns like that I would prefer straight walled cases without the trouble of all that bottleneck mess.

    The range has been closed for far too long with this nasty weather. I need to get the marlin out and put some rounds through it.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check