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Old 07-18-2018, 06:06 PM   #1
Junkers88
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Default Any open top revolver shooters?

After watching one of my favorite westerns I saw something I don't recall seeing before. An open top revolver. Yes I'm aware that they've been around for quite a while but I never really paid any attention to what the guys in the movie were holding. So the search began for my very own. I stumbled into the Uberti website and found a couple I like. Only problem is I was looking for something in .41 mag or .44 mag so's I could pick up a lever gun to match. All I've found are .45 colt and .38/.357. The pistols are .38 specials and the carbine is a .357 mag.

I'm really leaning towards the .38/.357 mag combo for an set of field and dear/hog guns but don't know anything about open top revolvers. I've read plenty about the .38 out of a rifle and how it does just fine at dropping deer/hogs at close range.

Any of you have an open top revolver that you have shot enough to give some insight? Fun to shoot? Accurate? Durable? Any real ballistic reason to get the 45's over the 38's?


Thank you in advance.
Richard.
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Old 07-18-2018, 07:12 PM   #2
TacticalCowboy
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I had a 71 Open top copy in .38. It was fun to shoot, and more accurate than one would expect. Locked up better than any Ruger I’ve ever owned. I ended up swapping it off for something else.. I didn’t like hauling that much pistol around to only shoot .38 special.
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Old 07-18-2018, 07:25 PM   #3
Buff
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The 45 LC is a much better choice if you plan on shooting anything other than targets
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Old 07-18-2018, 07:38 PM   #4
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I have an H&R 999 Sportsman that I inherited from my mother. I need to shoot it more.
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Old 07-18-2018, 07:46 PM   #5
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Sorry I got top open confused with open top.
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Old 07-18-2018, 10:14 PM   #6
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generally the 41 and 44 mag are simply too much for the locking mechanisim in a break open revolver,,,
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Old 07-19-2018, 05:54 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xman59 View Post
generally the 41 and 44 mag are simply too much for the locking mechanisim in a break open revolver,,,
You might have confused me. The open top revolvers I'm looking at don't break open. They load like a Ruger Blackhawk, I think....


Richard.
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Old 07-19-2018, 05:56 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grizzman View Post
I have an H&R 999 Sportsman that I inherited from my mother. I need to shoot it more.
Quote:
Originally Posted by grizzman View Post
Sorry I got top open confused with open top.
I googled that one. Neat looking pistol for sure!


Richard.
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Old 07-19-2018, 06:24 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkers88 View Post
You might have confused me. The open top revolvers I'm looking at don't break open. They load like a Ruger Blackhawk, I think....


Richard.
The ones like you are talking about wont handle high power rounds either, but they are cool
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Old 07-19-2018, 07:06 PM   #10
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The original "open top" revolvers were converted from cap and ball to cartridge guns. The new replicas are better steel, but the design is basically the same. The brass self-contained cartridge predated the Colt "Peacemaker" and gunsmiths converted the old front stuffers to cartridge firing guns. And no, they aren't strong enough for anything more than black powder equivalent loads.
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Old 07-19-2018, 07:38 PM   #11
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The top strap is necessary to keep the frame from spreading under heavy recoil. If the top spreads, gaps open up and moving parts get misaligned...not good.
The old muzzle loaders were excellent pointers but couldn't handle heavier loads.
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Old 07-19-2018, 09:42 PM   #12
xman59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkers88 View Post
You might have confused me. The open top revolvers I'm looking at don't break open. They load like a Ruger Blackhawk, I think....


Richard.
that's not an open top revolver, its a loading gate
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Old 07-20-2018, 08:59 AM   #13
Balcones_Walker
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They won't handle hunting grade 45LC loads, so 357/38 is just as good.
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Old 07-20-2018, 09:52 AM   #14
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Just for reference i believe this what you are talking about. They are called an open top due to not having a top strap over the cylinder. Due to that the frame is not strong enough for modern loads. As cool as they are for your combo rig you may want to look elsewhere.
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Old 07-20-2018, 04:04 PM   #15
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Thank you all for the replies. The picture above is indeed the type of pistol I'm talking about. Now for some more confusion from some of the comments. Uberti is selling new (as in not converted from black powder) pistols in .45. My assumption is that they are ok to shoot with a standard .45 caliber round. I'm not planning on hand loading any heavy rounds for it and I'd have thought they'd not be able to sell a weapon that will fail with standard loads. If the .45 is that much of a concern I'll go the .38/.357 route.

Thanks again folks! I'll keep doing research before I "pull the trigger" on a purchase.

Richard.
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Old 07-20-2018, 04:44 PM   #16
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They will handle "normal" .45 Colt ammo. It's fairly anemic (850/900fps) due to all the older guns still kicking around. There's a nice looking .38 for sale in the THF classifieds tight now.
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