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Thread: Ruger Old Army conversion cylinder?

  1. #1
    Boolit Master
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    Ruger Old Army conversion cylinder?

    Thinking about getting a conversion cylinder for my Old Army. Looking for input on Howell vs Krist and 45LC vs 45ACP.
    Thanks

  2. #2
    Boolit Master


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    I prefer the 6 shot Howell for .45Colt.
    Had it for a while, sold off the Old Army with cylinder to another Cowboy Shooter. He likes it too.
    Prefer 5 shot over 6 shot, and Colt over ACP.
    Have no idea what point of impact would be with an ACP cylinder. I already load the light "Cowboy" loads that the Conversion cylinders require. My std Cowboy load shot very close to POI.
    I HATE auto-correct

    Happiness is a Warm GUN & more ammo to shoot in it.

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  3. #3
    Boolit Buddy AntiqueSledMan's Avatar
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    Hello LIMPINGJ,

    I just looked at Howell's & Kirst's web pages,
    it looks like both only offer 6-shot cylinders, and they need to be removed for loading.
    I do not have a Ruger, but do have both Remington & Colt reproductions with conversion cylinders.
    My Remington has a 6-shot Howell, chambered in .44 Colt and I love it.
    Both of my Colt's are chambered in .45 Colt, one with a Howell and one with a Kirst.
    The Howell is a fine cylinder, but it needs to be removed for loading (a real pain with a Colt).
    I have the Kirst Gated on my other one, I really like that but it requires cutting a loading port.
    I thought Mike Brackett was working on a gated conversion for the Ruger's, he also likes the .45 ACP cartridge.
    He could be contacted at http://www.goonsgunworks.com/contact
    I'm sure he could lead you in the right direction.

    AntiqueSledMan.

  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy eastbank's Avatar
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    if you need any .44 colt cases let me know./

  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy
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    I love the Howell conversion cylinder in 45LC. The person that answers the phone is very knowledgeable and polite (can't remember her name). I wish every person was as polite and helped as much as she did. Quality cylinder and no fitting required, simple drop in.

  6. #6
    Boolit Buddy Gtrubicon's Avatar
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    I enjoy the old army for what it is. The best black powder revolver ever created. Get a Ruger Blackhawk convertible. 45 colt and 45 acp cylinders included. For a hand loader, it’s a hard pistol to beat.

  7. #7
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gtrubicon View Post
    I enjoy the old army for what it is. The best black powder revolver ever created. Get a Ruger Blackhawk convertible. 45 colt and 45 acp cylinders included. For a hand loader, it’s a hard pistol to beat.
    Exactly!
    Old enough to know better, young enough to do it anyway!

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  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by LIMPINGJ View Post
    Thinking about getting a conversion cylinder for my Old Army. Looking for input on Howell vs Krist and 45LC vs 45ACP.
    Thanks
    Hey LIMPINGJ, like has already been pointed out, they are both 6 shot cylinders ( Howell and Kirst). The main difference between the 2 is the support each has for the case. The Howell has a smaller "contact patch" for the rear (cap) where it contacts the recoil shield. On the other hand, the Kirst has full support for the case.
    I would stay with the load recommendation for the Howell or get the Kirst and shoot what you want to.
    I have 5 ROA's and they all have Kirst conversion cylinders in them. They shoot the same stuff Blackhawks do. If you've got a ROA and a Kirst cyl, you have a 3 screw Blackhawk.

    Hey ASM !!! I'm getting closer with the gated version. That'll be a game changer for sure!!!

    Mike

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by 45 Dragoon View Post
    Hey LIMPINGJ, like has already been pointed out, they are both 6 shot cylinders ( Howell and Kirst). The main difference between the 2 is the support each has for the case. The Howell has a smaller "contact patch" for the rear (cap) where it contacts the recoil shield. On the other hand, the Kirst has full support for the case.
    I would stay with the load recommendation for the Howell or get the Kirst and shoot what you want to.
    I have 5 ROA's and they all have Kirst conversion cylinders in them. They shoot the same stuff Blackhawks do. If you've got a ROA and a Kirst cyl, you have a 3 screw Blackhawk.

    Hey ASM !!! I'm getting closer with the gated version. That'll be a game changer for sure!!!

    Mike
    Hmmm same think the Blackhawk shoot hmmmmmmmm. I'm not so sure about that. Do you think that Kirst cylinder for the ROA from Kirst is the same steel Ruger uses in their Blackhawks? Kirst said to use Cowboy loads or Black Powder. Now as far as the ROA it's brute strong just like the Blackhawks.

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy AntiqueSledMan's Avatar
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    Hello TD1886,

    From Kirst's web page, "Made from strong, heat-treated 4140 steel or stainless steel."

    AntiqueSledMan.

  11. #11
    Boolit Buddy
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    Ruger's instructions say to use only "commercial" ammo made for the caliber the revolver is chambered for.
    So, what's a "Ruger only" load . . . ?

    Mike

  12. #12
    Boolit Grand Master pietro's Avatar
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    "Ruger only" loads are generally more robust than loads for guns that are not as strong as a Ruger.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by pietro View Post
    .

    "Ruger only" loads are generally more robust than loads for guns that are not as strong as a Ruger.
    Well there ya go!! Ask a rhetorical question, get a "serious" answer!!!!

    It would help to READ the posts for even a little context before posting an "obvious" statement.

    Mike

  14. #14
    Boolit Buddy
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    I would say Ruger loads are loads a little above loads that you would use in a Colt. Another way to say it is don't try to make it a 45 Magnum.

  15. #15
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    The reason I got into this thread is recently I bought a Pietta 1860 Colt replica. I think the 1860 is the most svelte pistol ever made. The pistol is most excellent in fit and finish. The bore and groove are very undersized in my opinion. The groove barely makes .450 and the bore just as much tighter. The cylinder opening are .450. I had considered getting a Kirst 45acp cylinder, but decided against that since the bore and groove are so tight. Then I thought I'll get a 45acp cylinder for my ROA. The ROA is one of the most accurate revolvers I've owned and shot. Had two of them and both shot the same. Why the 45acp cylinder you may ask? Well certainly not because of strength because the ROA is a brute strong. See I have a 3 screw Ruger in 45 Colt and I have the extra 45acp cylinder for it. With the 45acp cylinder it too is one of the most accurate revolvers I've ever owned and I hear that from many that own the 45 Blackhawks with the extra 45acp cylinder. I have other 45 Colt firearms and felt I didn't need yet one more with getting the 45 Colt cylinder for the ROA. The 45acp is really a nice round and I have tons of brass and moulds for it. I don't know what I'm going to do with brand nee Pietta. Also I read many forums on the conversion cylinders on the cap n ball revolvers and basically sounds like the best candidated for those are the Remington Armys because of the solid frame. I've also heard that the barrels on the cap n balls isn't the same grade of steel that is used in center fire smokeless revolvers and you can wear the barrel out especially shooting jacketed bullets. With the open frame cap n balls I heard that they can stretch the them. So now I'm setting idle and probably going to end up not doing anything maybe possibly selling the Pietta 1860.

  16. #16
    Boolit Buddy Trinidad Bill's Avatar
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    As stated many times the Ruger Old Army, as a percussion revolver, is very accurate and heavy duty.

    I have a R&D Drop-In Conversion Cylinder from Taylor in 45 LC that I have yet to use. I love the ROA as is, a percussion revolver.

    I would love to get a second percussion cylinder for the ROA. Can you even get them?
    Vietnam Veteran (68-69), NRA Life Member

  17. #17
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by TD1886 View Post
    The reason I got into this thread is recently I bought a Pietta 1860 Colt replica. I think the 1860 is the most svelte pistol ever made. The pistol is most excellent in fit and finish. The bore and groove are very undersized in my opinion. The groove barely makes .450 and the bore just as much tighter. The cylinder opening are .450. I had considered getting a Kirst 45acp cylinder, but decided against that since the bore and groove are so tight. Then I thought I'll get a 45acp cylinder for my ROA. The ROA is one of the most accurate revolvers I've owned and shot. Had two of them and both shot the same. Why the 45acp cylinder you may ask? Well certainly not because of strength because the ROA is a brute strong. See I have a 3 screw Ruger in 45 Colt and I have the extra 45acp cylinder for it. With the 45acp cylinder it too is one of the most accurate revolvers I've ever owned and I hear that from many that own the 45 Blackhawks with the extra 45acp cylinder. I have other 45 Colt firearms and felt I didn't need yet one more with getting the 45 Colt cylinder for the ROA. The 45acp is really a nice round and I have tons of brass and moulds for it. I don't know what I'm going to do with brand nee Pietta. Also I read many forums on the conversion cylinders on the cap n ball revolvers and basically sounds like the best candidated for those are the Remington Armys because of the solid frame. I've also heard that the barrels on the cap n balls isn't the same grade of steel that is used in center fire smokeless revolvers and you can wear the barrel out especially shooting jacketed bullets. With the open frame cap n balls I heard that they can stretch the them. So now I'm setting idle and probably going to end up not doing anything maybe possibly selling the Pietta 1860.
    Well, I don't know what you measured with but the Pietta and Uberti barrels are .452" and either will handle 45C / 45acp bullets just fine. In fact, that's all I shoot in my '60's, Dragoons and ROA's. I haven't shot bp in over 20 yrs. The Kirst 45acp cylinders for the Armys are incredible! In fact, I was the first to test that cylinder for Walt. I've been running tests for the open-top platform with a pair of Uberti's. They both are running perfect and are extremely accurate.

    My ROA's with 45C cylinders are rather amazing as well . I shoot rather warm loads in them and shoot the same loads in my Dragoons.

    I'm not sure I'd shoot the same loads in a Remington ( don't hang your hat on the "top strap " design or "solid frame" moniker . . . the Remington isn't anywhere close to a ROA).

    I think you should give the '60 a try anyway. The difference in the Pietta/Uberti barrels is the rifling twist. Pietta's are 1 / 32" whereas Uberti's are 1 /16" . . . perfect for 45C/45acp.
    By the way, almost all shots in 45acp have been with jacketed bullets. Same with the hot loads in the ROA's/ Dragoons.

    Mike

  18. #18
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by 45 Dragoon View Post
    Well, I don't know what you measured with but the Pietta and Uberti barrels are .452" and either will handle 45C / 45acp bullets just fine. In fact, that's all I shoot in my '60's, Dragoons and ROA's. I haven't shot bp in over 20 yrs. The Kirst 45acp cylinders for the Armys are incredible! In fact, I was the first to test that cylinder for Walt. I've been running tests for the open-top platform with a pair of Uberti's. They both are running perfect and are extremely accurate.

    My ROA's with 45C cylinders are rather amazing as well . I shoot rather warm loads in them and shoot the same loads in my Dragoons.

    I'm not sure I'd shoot the same loads in a Remington ( don't hang your hat on the "top strap " design or "solid frame" moniker . . . the Remington isn't anywhere close to a ROA).

    I think you should give the '60 a try anyway. The difference in the Pietta/Uberti barrels is the rifling twist. Pietta's are 1 / 32" whereas Uberti's are 1 /16" . . . perfect for 45C/45acp.
    By the way, almost all shots in 45acp have been with jacketed bullets. Same with the hot loads in the ROA's/ Dragoons.

    Mike
    I measured the barrel bore and groove diameters. They are super tight. I'll redo them again and let you know. I've shot cap n ball revolvers for over 45 years and had a good few of them. I had an 1860 replica made in Belgium that I shot loose as a goose. Like I mentioned too the cylinder mic very tight also. We know they call them 44's but they have the dimensions of 45's, well not my Pietta it is just about a 44!!!

    Bear with me I'll measure it again today.

  19. #19
    Boolit Buddy
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    Quote Originally Posted by TD1886 View Post
    I measured the barrel bore and groove diameters. They are super tight. I'll redo them again and let you know. I've shot cap n ball revolvers for over 45 years and had a good few of them. I had an 1860 replica made in Belgium that I shot loose as a goose. Like I mentioned too the cylinder mic very tight also. We know they call them 44's but they have the dimensions of 45's, well not my Pietta it is just about a 44!!!

    Bear with me I'll measure it again today.
    Okay here you go Mike. This is the groove diameter and like I had said it just makes .450. The cylinder is barely, barely larger.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  20. #20
    Boolit Buddy
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    TD1886, is this a new Pietta?

    BTW, all mine are Uberti's. I've had a Pietta set up with 45C but my Dragoons were the first.
    I recently made a trade with Walt and ended up with a Pietta again ( 45C). Haven't tested the Pietta's yet ( as far as "heavy" loads) so can't give any insight with them.

    Mike

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