This topic contains 21 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Butch Wax 2 years, 8 months ago.

  • Author
    Posts
  • #33637
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Ok. Had a ROA back in ’75 and kept it a couple years then traded it off. I’m an old traditional type and with Blackhawk sights and such I just couldn’t get used to it. In my eyes it was just wrong. And so I continued on with my many traditional style BP handguns.

    A couple weeks ago I found a NIB ROA 7 1/2″ fixed sight, blued unfired. And it has an unfired Howell’s conversion cylinder in .45 Colt with it. For $399 plus tax, I went for it. On layaway, I’ll have it out soon.

    Here’s my question for the Ruger whizkids among us.
    It’s listed as using .457″ round ball and .454″ conical bullet. I still have a very early model Lee single cavity mould in 220gr conical @ .456″ (mikes out at .452″ in pure lead) that I used with the earlier model I had long ago.
    So, .457″ RB? Tighter chamber fit perhaps? But then .454″ conical? And .452″ from a .45 Colt? What’s the bore diameter? I’ve been told the ROA has the same barrel as the Ruger .45 Colt Blackhawks being .451″. Course I’ll know more when I get the weapon and slug the bore. But anyone got an answer about all the wide difference in diameters? I mean I can see the RB with it’s brief bearing surface working ok, but the longer bullets concern me. I don’t know. I’m used to more conventional weapons with a closer tolerance to bullet and bore fit.

  • #33639
     kens 
    Participant
    • Gold
    • ★★★
    • Posts: 56
    • Comments: 531
    • Overall: 587

    A .457 ball stuffed into the ROA cylinder shaves a bit of lead from the circumference, as such, that gives you a somewhat elongated bearing surface

  • #33640
     Anonymous
    • Bronze
    • Posts: 0
    • Comments: 8
    • Overall: 8

    Hello Butch,

    I have 2 ROA’s One Blue the other SS.
    My SS has a .451 groove and a .442 bore. Bore measured via pin gauge. The Blue has a .442 bore and a .449 groove but I believe that is due to some constriction around the frame. A .442 pin gauge goes through this barrel as well but it did meet a bit more resistance as it passed through the frame area. I shoot .457, .454 RB’s through it as well as H&G 68’s sized .451 and 20gr of 3F. The Lee 220 gr will work as well with 20-30gr max. I recently had a mould made from Accurate 45-195C. It’s a good design if you want to maximize bearing surface with powder capacity as it’s OAL is .460. I can get 40gr (by vol) of 3F in the cylinder and the bullet can still be seated flush. I had it made to cast .456 using 30:1 Lead tin. It’s my favorite bullet this pistol.

    Mike.

  • #33642
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Ah ha! So it does have a .45 Colt barrel like the Blackhawk! Makes sense in a way to resize the ball so to speak in the cylinder chambers to stretch it some. And I’ve got, like stated earlier, the old Lee single cavity mould, a Lee double cavity in .451″ conical, and an old Ideal #452374, 225gr RN as well as Ideal .454″ and .451″ RB moulds. I’m sure with all that I’ll find something that’ll work.

    Thanks guys!

  • #33643
     Anonymous
    • Bronze
    • Posts: 0
    • Comments: 8
    • Overall: 8

    Butch, One thing to remember, at least with the adj sight models. The sights are calibrated for using a RB. Anything heavier will print higher.

  • #33644
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Well I’m sorta used to my BP wheelguns shooting high anyway. But I had downloaded the Ruger manual for that ROA and did read where the fixed sighted models are factry zeroed to 25yds. I can only assume that they’re using a moderate charge with a round ball.

    And I am concerned that this weapon might have the famous “Ruger Frame Crushed Barrel” that so many big bore Ruger Blackhawks suffer from. Couple years ago I found a pristene Ruger NM Blackhawk .44Spl Flattop in 4.8″. Beautiful weapon. Ivory gripes and a reall looker. But that’s where the fun ended. Leaded with everything I loaded and it was more accurate if you threw it at the target than by shooting at it. Barrel was crushed in the frame and besides, I don’t like the NM action. Don’t feel like a real sixgun. So I traded it for a Uberti SAA 4 3/4″ .357Mag and never looked back.
    And for a .44 handgun now I have an EAA Bounty Hunter 4.5″ .44Mag in blue that handles like a REAL SAA should. It’s a shooter too. 2.5″ at 25yds or under at times, when my hands work good, with 240gr Berry’s plated FP and 7gr of W231 in a mag case.

    OK, I kinda went off track here. Sorry. Guess I’ll find out all there is to find when I get the weapon home.

  • #33647
     kens 
    Participant
    • Gold
    • ★★★
    • Posts: 56
    • Comments: 531
    • Overall: 587

    Why do heavier bullets or balls print higher? It seems that the slower speed would print lower instead?

  • #33653
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Heavier projectile causes more recoil and tips the muzzle up more as it travels down the bore. Longer hang time and such. I know it sounds weird but it’s actually basic physics in action.

  • #33783
     Rattlesnake Charlie 
    Participant
    • Gold
    • ★★★
    • Posts: 152
    • Comments: 679
    • Overall: 831

    As a true percussion revolver, you have about the pinnacle. Enjoy that fine tool for what it was designed for.

  • #33794
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Yes sir, I belive you’re quite right there. Though I love my 2nd Mod Dragoon for heavy .44 pistol work, this ROA is a far lighter and shoots almost as hard. Going to have to get me a .457″ RB mould though as I believe .454″ will be too small for a good gas seal in the chambers. But for the time being the old Lee conical mould is working fine and the bullet will leave a slight ring when entering the chambers. Good sign threre to be sure.

    Was it worth over 4 C notes? Yes, I suppose with the addition of the R & D conversion cylinder to sweeten the deal. But as said earlier I think that system is clumsy as when the base pin is pulled and the loading lever group is removed, it falls apart in your hands due to it’s design. It would be far better in a Remington as the base pin/loading lever assembly remains in the weapon and still allows for quick cylinder removal.

  • #33803
     kens 
    Participant
    • Gold
    • ★★★
    • Posts: 56
    • Comments: 531
    • Overall: 587

    now I have heard, but I have not tried, the theory that the ROA is a Blackhawk, and as such, you can sweeten the BP load with a bit of Unique.
    But, I maintain the fact that I have not tried this .

  • #33809
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Well not on my watch! Smokless Powder has NO business in a BP weapon. Take my word on it from shooting, working on, and building them since 1960. I could go into details on lack of gas sealing of percussion caps and into the chamber pressure difference and weapon design, but frankly. No. Bad idea.

  • #33810
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Yesterday I did load some with a .454″ ball and the vol. equivalent of 40gr with American Pioneer Powder and it shot to point of aim and quite nicely too. Had a bit more pep in it as well. Felt good and shot as expected. There were no signs of poor gas seal in the chambers nor being undersized in the bore as a result of shooting the .454″ ball. I’m sure that the .457″ would render slightly better performance with the mild crushing into the chamber forming a more elongated bullet with slightly longer bearing surface. But until I obtain a .457″ mould I’ll continue with the .454″ as it provides adequate performance. The conical Lee cast 220gr though it casts well and seals perfectly, does not impress me on paper. Scattered groups, centered but high. And I believe I’ll save the lead and cast round ball in the future.

  • #33813
     Goodsteel 
    Keymaster
    • Gold
    • ★★★
    • Posts: 208
    • Comments: 2452
    • Overall: 2660

    I would be willing to bet money that your undersized balls are taking on a bit more of a short wadcutter shape by the time they leave the barrel. I have shot many thousands of round balls, and at the time I was doing it, I had no lead source other than riding my bike into town and pilfering the scrap yard, so I dug my round balls up out of the hill I shot into and reused them regularly. they looked like cylinders with a domed top and bottom. About a 3/16″ rifled band about the perimeter of them. Pure lead bumps up, especially when kicked with 3F in a handgun and it covers a multitude of sins! I would try to find a bigger mold, but at the same time, I wouldn’t get too wrapped around the axle. I often used pliers to smash my round balls back into rough sphere shapes, and I would reshoot them. No matter how rough they were, they always obturated the bore and I never experienced any leading.
    Good times!

  • #33819
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Yeah, the. 454″ round ball left zero leading as anticipated however just a couple did “jump ship” some under recoil and require reseating a bit. So until I get a .457″ mould I’ll shoot those conical bullets, which are pretty accurate on top of 35gr of APP fff! 🙂
    And this piece is a snap to clean! Quick flushing with hot tap water. A bit of Ballistol/water mix, then dry patch. Fast brush work around the nipples and a light coating of Ballistol with a shaving brush and done.

  • #33820
     kens 
    Participant
    • Gold
    • ★★★
    • Posts: 56
    • Comments: 531
    • Overall: 587

    I shot round patched ball from a cap lock muzzleloader , into the end of a big log. I dug it out expecting to see how it mushroomed. It didn’t.
    It elongated itself about 3/4″ and smaller diameter. I guess the end grain forced it to stay small and swage down in diameter, and longer length.

  • #33844
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Yup, have had some pass well into game that hardly changed shape and others look like a pancake. Ya never know exactly what will happen I suppose.
    Close range shots on deer with a 36 navy with a full chamber of fff BP and a round ball proved fatal enough. One ran 25yds and went down and two more only stumbled a few feet and keeled over. Yet another hit with a 50cal rifle ran half a mile. Ya never know.

  • #33845
     Goodsteel 
    Keymaster
    • Gold
    • ★★★
    • Posts: 208
    • Comments: 2452
    • Overall: 2660

    Butch Wax;n14674 wrote: Yup, have had some pass well into game that hardly changed shape and others look like a pancake. Ya never know exactly what will happen I suppose.
    Close range shots on deer with a 36 navy with a full chamber of fff BP and a round ball proved fatal enough. One ran 25yds and went down and two more only stumbled a few feet and keeled over. Yet another hit with a 50cal rifle ran half a mile. Ya never know.

    Its true you never know exactly what will happen, but I can tell you this: Running modern eargasplitzenloudenboomer cartridges offers no additional comfort. I used to be a “faster the better” type of shooter, thinking that meant deer on the ground no matter what. However, my experience with a 300 Winchester Magnum loaded with 165gr Gamekings at 3200FPS could be summed up in exactly the same words you just used to describe the 36 Navy round ball.
    The one thing I can say for sure is that I have far more evidence of a cast bullet making deer do an immediate nose plant, than I do for jacketed bullets. Sometimes less is more.

    On an earlier note: If you take your round balls and give them a tap with the butt of the revolver, they will be big enough to seal the cylinder. We know they don’t come out round anyway, so I just let the rough edge drag.

  • #33864
     Anonymous
    • Bronze
    • Posts: 0
    • Comments: 8
    • Overall: 8

    Butch. If you want a heavier than RB for the ROA. Take a look at this: http://www.accuratemolds.com/bullet_detail.php?bullet=45-195C-D.png PM me and I’ll send you a few cast in 40:1 to try if you’re interested.

  • #33869
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    I appreciate it however, I’m really after round ball moulds and may have a line on an old Ideal single cavity mould as we speak. Not too fond of aluminum moulds and much prefer old iron ones.
    But again I thank you for your offer to assist. Conical and other elongated projectiles have a nasty habit of getting off center and tilting in BP revolver cylinders. Round ball works far better for me.

  • #33879
     kens 
    Participant
    • Gold
    • ★★★
    • Posts: 56
    • Comments: 531
    • Overall: 587

    Butch Wax;n14703 wrote: I appreciate it however, I’m really after round ball moulds and may have a line on an old Ideal single cavity mould as we speak. Not too fond of aluminum moulds and much prefer old iron ones.
    But again I thank you for your offer to assist. Conical and other elongated projectiles have a nasty habit of getting off center and tilting in BP revolver cylinders. Round ball works far better for me.

    There are some heeled conicals made for BP revolvers. The heel lets them start straight.
    Here is an example, there are others.

    http://www.accuratemolds.com/bullet_detail.php?bullet=45-190S-D.png

  • #33891
     Butch Wax 
    Participant
    • Silver
    • ★★
    • Posts: 22
    • Comments: 158
    • Overall: 180

    Yes sir, the moulds offered by Lee in their BP line are like that with a reduced diameter base for just that purpose.
    In many of my old style BP revolvers their rifling is much slower in the 1:30 range. They shoot well with round ball and only fair with conical bullets. The Ruger uses the barrel from their .45 Colt Blackhawk with a 1:16 twist as in most Colts and others in the .45 Colt caliber. Naturally the bore would be suitable for elongated projectiles but again even the brief tests with .454″ round ball proved quite accurate. I’m almost positive that the results from the larger round ball will prove to be even better. Due to a more perfect seal in the chambers along with the compression of the bullet creating a greater bearing surface. This is bound to improve RB accuracy.

    And I did secure the purchase of a fine old single cavity .457″ RB mould by Ideal that should arrive next week. Meanwhile I’ve plenty of things to do to keep me occupied until the mould arrives. Raining since yesterday afternoon and is to be like this until Wednesday, so I’m casting old-school bullets from 1903 & 1904, the Ideal 358250 & 360271. And the 1938’ish round lube groove Ideal 358429 that Elmer hated but actually shoots great.

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.

© 2017 Goodsteel Forum. Designed by Covalent Designs, LLC.