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Author Topic: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?  (Read 4148 times)

MTK20

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Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
« on: December 11, 2015, 06:08:50 pm »
Had a friend who wanted to get rid of a pietta 1860 army pistol. She sold it, powder, patches, and all the kit for just $100.

Just one problem. It was loaded when I got it. Seeing as I didn't see who loaded it or the charge given, I don't want to shoot it yet for safety. I'm new to this genre of firearms and I wanted to know how to safely unload the cylinder. So far I have it removed from the gun and the caps taken off the nipples, so that's a good start. Now what to do about the chambers filled with ball and powder?

Thanks!
Texas
Do we forget that cops were primarily still using 6 Shot Revolvers well through the mid 80's? It wasn't until after 1986 that most departments then relented and went to autos.
Capacity wasn't really an issue then... and honestly really it's not even an issue now.
Ray Chapman, used to say that the 125-grain Magnum load’s almost magical stopping power was the only reason to load .357 instead of .38 Special +P ammunition into a fighting revolver chambered for the Magnum round. I agree. - Massad Ayoob

Paradoxically it is those who strive for self-reliance, who remain vigilant and ready to help others.

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    JesseL

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #1 on: December 11, 2015, 08:37:59 pm »
    You'll probably need to get a nipple wrench to pull off the nipples and pour out the powder.

    After that getting the balls out could be tricky. You could screw a wood screw into each ball and pull it out with pliers.

    Or if you're feeling ballsy you could refill the chambers with powder and shoot them out. If you do that you'll want to make sure to put in enough powder not to leave any air space.

    One nice thing about call and ball revolvers is that as long as you're using black powder or a bp substitute you can't get a dangerous amount of powder into the chamber and still have room to ram down a ball.
    Arizona

    Grant

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #2 on: December 11, 2015, 08:44:18 pm »
       If it's sat for a period, it likely wouldn't fire anyway.

       I dunno, I've never had to pull one from a revolver, but I'd assume that putting a screw in would work.

      *ETA Jesse beat me to it.

     I've pulled a ball from a muzzleloading rifle, no way to get the powder out so we screwed on a ball-puller and yanked it out then poured out the powder.
    Montana"I’d say the worst part of all this is the feeling of betrayal,           but I’m betting the part where they break in here and beat us to death might be worse.”

    MTK20

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #3 on: December 11, 2015, 08:53:10 pm »
    To my understanding it sat for a little bit. I know 2 out of the cylinder were shot, so if it was safe then to shoot...  :hmm.

    Also, they shot it and didn't clean it. I had to police the rust and save the barrel  :facepalm.

    I'm feeling conflicted on this one. Am I being too cautious and should just shoot the cylinder or should I go the screw method? I know with the screw method, it is most likely the safest option.
    Texas
    Do we forget that cops were primarily still using 6 Shot Revolvers well through the mid 80's? It wasn't until after 1986 that most departments then relented and went to autos.
    Capacity wasn't really an issue then... and honestly really it's not even an issue now.
    Ray Chapman, used to say that the 125-grain Magnum load’s almost magical stopping power was the only reason to load .357 instead of .38 Special +P ammunition into a fighting revolver chambered for the Magnum round. I agree. - Massad Ayoob

    Paradoxically it is those who strive for self-reliance, who remain vigilant and ready to help others.

    Mikee5star

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #4 on: December 11, 2015, 09:21:07 pm »
    Go ahead and get the screw-puller.  You can unload at home, or when/if it does not fire you are prepared.
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    RMc

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #5 on: December 12, 2015, 06:33:31 pm »
    Use a small diameter brass rod, and through the open nipple hole, carefully tap the ball out of each chamber.
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    webeable

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #6 on: January 03, 2016, 11:23:34 am »
    Pull the cylinder out, then remove nipples. after that can use a small punch to remove the loads.  Can set up on a shoulder bolt that has a long enough threaded area to go through the cylinder to hold up off table or work bench.  Take your time soak each load of powder with oil let set repeat till totally wet.
    Ohio

    MTK20

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #7 on: January 03, 2016, 11:45:27 am »
    Pull the cylinder out, then remove nipples. after that can use a small punch to remove the loads.  Can set up on a shoulder bolt that has a long enough threaded area to go through the cylinder to hold up off table or work bench.  Take your time soak each load of powder with oil let set repeat till totally wet.

    At what point do I soak the load with oil and why?
    Texas
    Do we forget that cops were primarily still using 6 Shot Revolvers well through the mid 80's? It wasn't until after 1986 that most departments then relented and went to autos.
    Capacity wasn't really an issue then... and honestly really it's not even an issue now.
    Ray Chapman, used to say that the 125-grain Magnum load’s almost magical stopping power was the only reason to load .357 instead of .38 Special +P ammunition into a fighting revolver chambered for the Magnum round. I agree. - Massad Ayoob

    Paradoxically it is those who strive for self-reliance, who remain vigilant and ready to help others.

    webeable

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #8 on: January 03, 2016, 01:20:24 pm »
    After nipples pulled so powder is safe and make it easier to remove lead
    Ohio

    coelacanth

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #9 on: January 04, 2016, 11:44:48 pm »
    Not really necessary to soak the powder if it will pour out through the nipple openings as Jessel suggested.   About the only thing that could cause an accidental ignition of powder in that scenario is an excess of static electricity.   :hmm    If you are grounded and its a fairly humid day there shouldn't be any problems.  Pouring the chambers full of oil will definitely kill the powder but it will be an additional PIA to clean up once you get it unloaded.
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    MTK20

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #10 on: January 05, 2016, 12:13:46 am »
    Funny thing is that I shook and shook and the powder wouldn't come out. In fact, I think the previous owner maybe just shoved the balls in, no powder :facepalm. I'll be able to see if there's any powder when I find a brass rod small enough to fit inside the ignition hole (?) Of the cylinder  :banghead. Yes, I could buy a ball puller, but I just haven't gotten around to it yet.
    Texas
    Do we forget that cops were primarily still using 6 Shot Revolvers well through the mid 80's? It wasn't until after 1986 that most departments then relented and went to autos.
    Capacity wasn't really an issue then... and honestly really it's not even an issue now.
    Ray Chapman, used to say that the 125-grain Magnum load’s almost magical stopping power was the only reason to load .357 instead of .38 Special +P ammunition into a fighting revolver chambered for the Magnum round. I agree. - Massad Ayoob

    Paradoxically it is those who strive for self-reliance, who remain vigilant and ready to help others.

    RMc

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #11 on: January 05, 2016, 02:29:35 am »
    Alabama

    webeable

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    Re: Got a new BP pistol, now how do I safely and unload it?
    « Reply #12 on: January 05, 2016, 09:03:55 am »
    another way is compressed air and small tube on nipple,when son teaching how to do bp would forget powder some, would put small charge in then put  nipple/cap back in and fire ball would come out.  When he got his own gun got him an inline and remove the breach plug and push out.
    Ohio

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