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Thread: Uberti 1849 Wells Fargo

  1. #1
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    Uberti 1849 Wells Fargo

    How does one load the Uberti 1849 Wells Fargo that has no loading lever?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Drift the wedge out, pull the barrel assembly off; note that the end of the cylinder pin hasa recess that's roughly the same diameter as the ball you'll loading. The idea was to break the revolver down as I described, charge the chambers with powder, then use the cylinder pin to push the balls into the chambers. It is inefficient and clumsy, and it's easy to damage the chamber mouths, but it works. I'd suggest getting a dedicated lever-type loading tool, or at least something like a short starter that the ML rifle shooters use.
    "What's good for me might not be good for the weak-minded."- Augustus McRae

  3. #3
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    Make yourself a loader by

    : Make a plunger by getting a round piece of steel 5/16 dia x 2 inches.
    cut a slot in the end of the piece with a hacksaw 1 inch deep by 1/8 wide
    Make a handel out of a bar stock 1/8 x 1/2 x 8 inches long.
    drill a hole about 1 inch from the end and drill a hole in the plug so that you can pin the plug to the lever with some kind of pin/nail
    Use by sliding the end into the wedge slot in the cylinder pin and pushing the ball into the cylinder with the plug.

  4. #4
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    Yeah, the perception back then was much different. That fancy, new-fangled revolver gave you five or six shots instead of one. That's like carrying five or six regular pistols. Why worry about reloading?

  5. #5
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    Wulf...wow, good idea. Might I suggest brass for the rammer, just to help preserve the chamber mouths?

    k1mri, have you looked into getting some spare cylinders? You could have a spare or two all loaded and ready. That way, if you find yourself surrounded by soda cans and have to reload, you could go all "Pale Rider" on their butts.
    "What's good for me might not be good for the weak-minded."- Augustus McRae

  6. #6
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    Yeah, the perception back then was much different. That fancy, new-fangled revolver gave you five or six shots instead of one. That's like carrying five or six regular pistols. Why worry about reloading?
    Exactly! When the baby dragoon came out in 1847-48 it was really the first small concealable revolver commercially available in large numbers. Back then the mind set was carry a second revolver, not on reloading the first revolver.
    By 1849 the Baby Dragoon had evolved and had a loading lever. Colt made approximately 325,000 of the pocket frame percussion cap revolvers. One unusual model, the Trapper did not have a loading lever, but did have a hole in the barrel lug for the "Mushroom" a loading tool that rammed to ball into the chambers.

    Trapper and Mushroom.



    Mushroom inserted in barrel lug.

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  7. #7
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    Another consideration was that in their original usage the 49 model Colt was predominately an urban or town weapon. In the early gold rush era in California and Colorado for example it wasn't uncommon for people to pay the local gunsmith to actually load these weapons-they wanted to avoid problems and for many the percussion revolver was a form of high tech which was unfamiliar. Likely the same practice occurred in large eastern cities such as NY.

    Incidentally getting a piece of wood or soft brass to drift the wedge out is not a bad idea. When a BP revolver is fired extensively these wedges sometimes foul up and become problematic to remove. On some period weapons there are definite marks when someone whacked the wedge of a fouled weapon with something less than ideal...such as a spare cylinder or knife butt and etc.

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