Strength of New 1873 ?

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EdinCT
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Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by EdinCT »

I have seen this question asked and never gave this any thought before. I never really cared for a 1873 until I shouldered one and thought I had to put one on my wish list.I really am not looking to hot rod one but all the inquiring about the new 357 and 44 Mag 1873's and if they will last. It came to mind that we shoot these rounds in handguns and it seemed if bolt thrust is the weak spot in the 73 links why don't the cases in a revolver set back and hang up the cylinders? What is different? Is it more about older barrel /frame issues ?
The 357 is calling but its running pressure is a long way from a 32 wcf!
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Pete44ru »

The 1873/73 action is locked/supported & operated via toggle links, nowhere near as strong as the solid recoil shield in the solid frame of a revolver.

I wouldn't put my $$$$ on a .44 Mag Model 73 clone lasting through very much more than occasional shooting/hunting.

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by .45colt »

Ed, I had a Uberti '73 sporting Rifle in .45 colt. It was absolutly flawless. I duplacted the original 44-40 loads with a 200gr bullet at 1300fps. I sold it while it was as new.if I were to get another it would be in 38-40,44-40,or .357. Myself haveing great respect for the Quality of Uberti Firearms I have NO reason to put My face behind the breech bolt of a ....44mag '73.
Just as I stay many miles away when the "Boys" at the farm when they shoot off pipe bombs with lot's of black powder, I see no reason to get in that same way with a '73 action. :o :o :o .
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Malamute »

I quite agree that a 73 action isnt as strong as a 92, but, has anyone every actually seen one that came apart? I see many comments about being worried about being behind the bolt, but the bolt doesn't come out the back, that's a firing pin extension, not the bolt, the bolt wouldn't fit thru the hole in the rear of the frame. The firing pin extension is threaded into the bolt, I don't think it's coming out. I'm thinking you are more likely to blow a barrel out than have the bolt come back (but not out of the frame) from defeating the action lockup.

Winchester did some tests on the 76's, going up to several bullets and double or more powder charges, then took one link out, it still held. With one link removed and the very heavy loads, it tweaked soemthing, but it was repaired and continued to function fine afterwards.

I just read an old issue of Rifle magazine, it was brought up in one article that a 76 had blown out the barrel in the chamber area, as other levers do when they have pressure problems, but the action held fine. I'm not saying the toggle link actions are as strong as 92 types or 94 types, but I think they are stronger than generally given credit for. So far I've never seen (or even heard rumors of) any real evidence that they are as weak and scary as most folks seem to feel they are. They've been chambering the 73 repros in 357 mag since the 70's I believe, and still do. I'd guess they are plenty strong for that chambering. As for the 44, I would guess they did some testing before releasing it. If it develps problems, I would bet large amouts of mney it isnt gong to have the bolt come out the back (which I think is impossible in any event), but may loosen up, which would be very noticable. As when Buck chamberd various guns in 454, they simply became so loose they would not function. I think the same is likely in a 73 action, not a catastrophic failure, tho it would take many more rounds to do it, if it even becomes an issue.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by kimwcook »

I've got an Uberti '73 in 38 WCF and I'm not concerned one iota about blowing it up. First, I'm not going to hotrod it beyond standard loads and second, I don't see Uberti putting out a product that could end up seriously hurting someone and taking the chance of losing a pile of cash in a lawsuit.

I've read the article about the Winchester factory trying to blow an original '73 with jamming multiple bullets in a barrel. I don't recall exactly how many, but it was like up to six. I don't think they're as weak as the rumors say they are.

I don't have but 50 rds through mine, but I love it.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Hobie »

Getting back to the .44 Magnum 1873s.

The "famous" Shrapnel 1876 blew apart the barrel in the chamber area, not the action. I thought that was interesting. Uberti, and their importers, are apparently convinced that there are no liability risks in selling the .44 Magnum 1873s. One is limited to a particular COL in that action. Personally, I don't want one. It seems to me that even if it is safe to chamber one of those for the .44 Magnum, chambering it in other than the original chamberings defeats the purpose of having a 1873 rifle or carbine.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Grizzly Adams »

Well, "Common knowledge" has it that the 73 is a weak action. Never mind that the Uberti 73 is proofed by the Italian government for the 357 mag, and their standards exceed ours! I am confident that the 73 chambered for 44 mag is just as safe given standard factory loads. In this case, "common knowledge" is just common - not informed. Folks just repeat what they have heard. :roll:
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Malamute »

Well, for some reason a 73 in 357 interests me to a degree, but a 92 doesnt.

Dont really want to get into a new caliber, like 44 WCF.
"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat." -Theodore Roosevelt-

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Charles »

I have poked around the innards of a Winchester 73 on multiple occasions and would not want to fire either the 357 and 44 magnum rounds in one. Will they come apart? Probably not. But there are far better levergun "platforms" in which to house those rounds. I would keep the 73 and clones to the original rounds at the original pressure. We like them for the nostalgia, so why and try and make them something they were never intended to be?
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Malamute »

By that logic, we probably shouldnt have any single action revovlers in 357 magnum, as they weren't originally intended to be in that caliber. The Colt SAA has bee chambered in 357 magnum for many years, so far no problems have been reported that I know of. Come to think of it, the Italian 73's have been made in 357 magnum for 40 years, and so far I havent heard of any problems with them either, and they are still being made. I would think they would stop if there was a problem. I find it interesting that so many seem afraid of something that's been succesfully around for so long, and with no evidence that there's any problem.

The 73 "strength" question reminds me of the 336/94 Win "strength" question. So many seem concerned about which is "stronger", (and mistakenly assume the 336 is), tho they have not mentioned what they intend to do with them that the strength will make any difference. Using standard round, it simply doesnt make any difference, either will last a lifetime. With the 73 copies, using standard loads, including standard 357 loads, the gun will likely last a lifetime of shooting also, and in no case would I expect it to explode in someones face as so many seem to think could happen. So far, nobody has ever come up with any such case ever happening, in any circumstance, including grossly overloaded or intentionaly loaded to destruction.

92's weren't "intended" for 357 or 44 either, but they seem to work alright.
"Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat." -Theodore Roosevelt-

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by EdinCT »

Thanks for the replies. I think if I find a 357 rifle I may have to try it. I have been blessed in that I have my Grandfathers 38WCF 1892 and a Marlin Cowboy limited II in 44 mag I also have a 32WCF revolvor that my Dad gave me so that my be a temptation but I also have alot of 357 brass and bullets/molds.
I think I would be happy with either caliber.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by COSteve »

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actual bolt thrust

Post by w30wcf »

What is not being taken into account here is the amount of bolt thrust the 44 Magnum develops. The higher pressure against the chamber walls helps lock the cartridge in the chamber to some degree.

Apparently Uberti has done that testing and found that the '73 action is safe with the 44 Magnum. I have no desire to own one since it is not traditional.......

w30wcf

oops...Steve beat me to it. :D
However, the bolt thrust in the tables does not take into account the reduction of BT due to the chamber wall interference.
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Re: actual bolt thrust

Post by COSteve »

w30wcf wrote:What is not being taken into account here is the amount of bolt thrust the 44 Magnum develops. The higher pressure against the chamber walls helps lock the cartridge in the chamber to some degree.

Apparently Uberti has done that testing and found that the '73 action is safe with the 44 Magnum. I have no desire to own one since it is not traditional.......

w30wcf

oops...Steve beat me to it. :D
However, the bolt thrust in the tables does not take into account the reduction of BT due to the chamber wall interference.
Maybe so, but it does show that hot 45 Colt and 44 Mag produce BT's far above that which the action was designed for and that's why those loads are unwise in a '73's action no matter what kind of steel the receiver is made of.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Martini450 »

For the record, Uberti's 44 magnum 1873 is definitely currently available for sale as a standard off the shelf product. I have handled them at Taylor and Company's shop in Winchester, Virginia. Whether that calibre is a good idea in the '73 design is another question, but the gun has been available for purchase for at least six months.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by J Miller »

Steve,

Just for the sake of argument recheck your chart. The SAAMI specs for STANDARD .45 Colt loads is NOT 21,000 PSI. It is 14,000 PSI. The 21,000 you listed would be appropriate to the .45 ACP though.

I suspect if you used that figure and recalculated your chart the BT for the standard .45 Colts would be fairly close to the 44-40.

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by COSteve »

J Miller wrote:Steve,

Just for the sake of argument recheck your chart. The SAAMI specs for STANDARD .45 Colt loads is NOT 21,000 PSI. It is 14,000 PSI. The 21,000 you listed would be appropriate to the .45 ACP though.

I suspect if you used that figure and recalculated your chart the BT for the standard .45 Colts would be fairly close to the 44-40.

Joe
You are correct. I copied the wrong columns. I have updated the chart to correct it.

The chart now very clearly shows that 'as originally designed' the action was expected to see less than 2,400ft/lbs of bolt thrust. Modern 38 Spl and 44 Spl calibers stay under that level while 357 mag and std 45 Colt are slightly above it. 44 mag and hot 45 Colt greatly exceed the 'as originally designed' criteria.

Further, in a thread last april titled "any thoughts on the uberti 1873 in 44 mag?", Griff posted:

"While I'm sure that Nate sees many more '73s than I have... any stretch in the receiver with .357s would have to be after many, many over the top loadings... not likely to be just factory loads. I, myself, have only heard of '66s that have developed elongated frames... and that was after thousands of rounds of .38Spl +Ps. Unfornately, a friend of mine bought a fine example of that rifle, not knowing it's history. Headspace was a thing of the past. 3 or 5 gunsmiths later, it sits in his safe as a reminder that one should NOT buy before checking. Luckily, this was many, many years ago and he wasn't out a fortune.

But, I'm still firmly in the camp that sez a .44Mag in a '73 ain't necessarily a desired item. I'll stick with my .45Colts, thank you very much! :P"


Nate then posted the following comment that I think is germane here again,

"I'm not too concerned with the receiver stretching either. I'm more concerned with the many small pins and link parts that have to contain that pressure over the long haul. Even with the 357m's shoot with a kizzilion CAS 38's those parts wear and because there so many of those wear points they get loose. I know you know the more parts equals the more likely it fails prematurely."
Steve

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Grizzly Adams »

Both Taylors and Cimarron Arms have the 73 in 44 mag - or did last time I checked on it.

As for a steady diet of 357 mag stretching the frame on a Uberti 1873, that's just.....funny! :lol:
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by J Miller »

This is just a question, or a thought really, about the use of the High Velocity ammo in 32 WCF and 44 WCF, that was introduced after smokeless powder came about, in the 1873 Winchesters.
I'm sure people then were just as dense as they are now, and prone to do stupid things. Also illiteracy was more common then as now so the question / thought is; just how many 1873s got fed the Hi Velocity stuff even though it was intended for the the 1892 only, and how much if any damage was done to the rifles because of it?

Is it possible, just possible, that we shooters of the modern world have been so indoctrinated by the paranoid safety Nazis that we are making more of this than there is?

Just playing the devils advocate.

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Malamute »

I thought the high velocity 44 WCF loads were "rifle only" not "92 only".

The "originally intended" idea sounds good on paper, but I don't now if they had pressure testing instruments back then. I beleive they worked on the "looks like that should work" engineering concept, or as was said before "TLAR engineering" (that looks about right) Keep in mind also that the 92's originally used the same loads, so they were also "originally intended" for the exact same loads. The tests doen on the 76's seen to bear out that the guns were capable of handling much more than the standard loads without catasrophic failure.

I'm curious how many 357 73's have been shot to uselessness, and if 44-40's and 45 Colts have also achieved the same level of looseness from similar use.

I'm really not trying to be contrary, but I'm curious what the truth is. The old "everyone knows" thing isn't always correct. At the very least, I've never heard of a 73 actually coming apart, as so many assume they will, from any level of use or overload. Wear one out? Perhaps. Blow up in your face? I doubt it. I'm happy to see reason from examples, but I don't recall of ever hearing of a 73 that exploded in use. I've seen some orginals that were sloppy loose, but I've also seen original Sharps that were sloppy loose. Just never seen or heard of a 73 that exploded in use. I'd welcome Steves comments on is experiences with 357's that wore out, (and if other cals do also) and if he's seen any that catastrophically failed. Are the well worn guns rebuildable?
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by getitdone1 »

I expect to soon own a Uberti 1873 chambered for the 357 mag. Make mine SRC.

If you own a company and produce unsafe products you are asking for a lot of trouble and expense. Some assumptions are pretty close to 100% and my assumption is that Uberti has tested this model extensively with the 357 mag cartridge--as well as the rest--and found them adequate.

It's for sure, I would never, ever go beyond factory 357 pressures with this gun.

After all the guns I've had and yet not had an 1873--The Gun That Won The West! About time--really past time.

My version of gun that won the West would say it helped win the west. Plenty of other guns also played a part. Sharps and Springfield, for a couple.

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by kimwcook »

Just to wet y'all's appetite.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Warhawk »

I finally saw one of the 1873's in .44 Magnum yesterday at Arego Guns in Hot Springs, AR. This was was imported by Stoeger and was about $1000. Same configuration at all the 1873 44 mags I've seen pics of, full blue, thin rubber butt pad.

Image

Absolutely gorgeous gun, beautiful high gloss blue, with great fit and finish. The action was smooth and I was a little surprised to see how small (diameter) the bolt is. I'm not an 1873 expert by any means, but this one didn't look any beefier than any other 1873 I've seen.

I'd love to have one, but that $1000 doesn't grow on trees these days. This was so nice that I probably wouldn't ever use it in the field, and I would only shoot mid range handloads in it. I think I just talked myself out of it <G>.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by adirondakjack »

Here's the problem as I see it. IF a '73 is properly fitted up, with the links over-centering upon closing the lever, it is a pretty strong action. The problem is, far too many '73s leave the factory with links a hair too short to allow them to fully over-center upon lock-up, and may even have wide head space right from the start, allowing each shot to "hammer" the bolt, links and lever, until the lever actually bends, widens head space, accelerates the problem, etc.

So YES a strong '73 CAN be made, but the consumer cannot count on any particular rifle being able to take the pounding without shooting loose over even a fairly small number of rounds.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by hightime »

I have for years been buying one lever gun or another and getting one or two elements of the '73 in each. It was time to get it all in the 1873 Special Sporting Rifle. $1,200 seemed OK for the best looking rifle in the safe.

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Mike D. »

Some of the HV ammo stated on the box "not for revolvers and Model 1873 rifles". I did inadvertently fire a HV .44 W.C.F round through my 1902 vintage SA Colt. Thankfully, no damage to the gun or to me. :o
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by M. M. Wright »

If you take a look at P. O. Ackley's first volume, there is a chapter about "bolt thrust". Ackley loosened the barrel in a '94 and backed it off one turn and fired it and the case did not set back but the primer backed out exactly the amount the barrel was loosened. He then tried it with two turns, (had to extend the firing pin), same results. Only by oiling the case was he able to get the case to back out. Ackley's conclusion was that there is no such thing as bolt thrust.

I don't hot rod the '73 but doubt that with a straight sided case, (.44 Mag, .357 Mag.) there is going to be any thrust against the bolt until the bullet is out of the barrel and the pressure drops enough to release the case.

Modern steel in the barrel and receiver should take care of anyone's concerns. Argue with P. O.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by FatJackDurham »

I have no relevant experience on the subject, I just got back into guns. I own a Rossi 92 .357 and am very happy with it.

As far as strength, I can't imagine anyone selling products that have a known strength issue. The book by Chicoine points out how inferior Italian guns washed out early on. I'd say .357 is probably an easy bet. .44, well, I supposed like everyone else says is true, watch out for hot loads and enjoy yourself.

What do you think the reason you want the 1873 over the 1892 is? I bought the 92 because it was cheaper and more compact. I saw the 73 I. A store and it was beautiful, but cycling it off vertical didn't work. I don't know if it was a sloppy build or what. I considered Marlins as well. But for me cost was a factor and I found a 92 in great shape with slight corrosion on the barrel for a great price.

I'd say, by it if you want it and enjoy it. They are beautiful.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Leverdude »

adirondakjack wrote:Here's the problem as I see it. IF a '73 is properly fitted up, with the links over-centering upon closing the lever, it is a pretty strong action. The problem is, far too many '73s leave the factory with links a hair too short to allow them to fully over-center upon lock-up, and may even have wide head space right from the start, allowing each shot to "hammer" the bolt, links and lever, until the lever actually bends, widens head space, accelerates the problem, etc.

So YES a strong '73 CAN be made, but the consumer cannot count on any particular rifle being able to take the pounding without shooting loose over even a fairly small number of rounds.

Exactly. In addition, since the links over center to lock up head space has to be on the long side or it wouldnt close on a cartridge. They are longest while inline & then open a smidge as the pivot goes over center.
Theres a reason Winchester had Mr Browning design a new action for his short rounds. Weight had something to do with it I'm sure but strength had alot to do with it to I'd think.
Someone asked why if bolt thrust was an issue 357's & 44's dont lock up revolvers. The reason is that brass has some spring to it. So even though the case applies pressure radially as well as straight back, once the internal pressure is gone the brass is no longer bearing on the recoil shield when talking about straight walled cases. Bottleneck cases are another story because the shoulder can set back holding the case against the recoil shield & preventing rotation of the cylinder.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by J Miller »

Just curious, but didn't we just do this 44 mag in the 1873 about 2 or 3 weeks ago????

Since I have zero experience with the 44 mag and only a tinsy bit with the 1873 here is what I think:
A> No manufacturer would risk their corporate necks by selling a firearm chambered for a magnum cartridge unless it is safe to use the hottest factory ammo available.
Most shooters do not hand load, so most of these rifles will be fed 44 mag factory ammo. Gotta be able to handle it.

B> I have no intentions of shooting a 44 mag round out of an 1873. I just don't think it's prudent.

JMHO

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by hfcable »

"....2nd - try to find one for sale. I've looked and have yet to find anyone, anywhere who claims to have one in stock or who has purchased a production version..........."

i did try to find one.............. and got myself one for Christmas. beautifully made rifle. weather has been way to nasty to try it out yet, and had to have upper and lower endoscopy after Xmas i did, i mean, not the rifle : ), and scheduled for resulting surgery next wednesday............so this will be continued sometime in the near future with pictures and early range report.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Rafe Covington »

I have 3 Uberti 1873 rifles, one is a .357 mag. I have shot about 5 to 6 hundreds handloads thru this rifle. 170 gr bullet with 11 grs of 2400 [358429 mold]. I haven't had a problem and don't see where I will JMHO guys.

Rafe
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Malamute
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Malamute »

Leverdude wrote:
adirondakjack wrote:Here's the problem as I see it. IF a '73 is properly fitted up, with the links over-centering upon closing the lever, it is a pretty strong action. The problem is, far too many '73s leave the factory with links a hair too short to allow them to fully over-center upon lock-up, and may even have wide head space right from the start, allowing each shot to "hammer" the bolt, links and lever, until the lever actually bends, widens head space, accelerates the problem, etc.

So YES a strong '73 CAN be made, but the consumer cannot count on any particular rifle being able to take the pounding without shooting loose over even a fairly small number of rounds.

Exactly. In addition, since the links over center to lock up head space has to be on the long side or it wouldnt close on a cartridge. They are longest while inline & then open a smidge as the pivot goes over center.
.....

I'm not sure that's an accurate description of how the overcenter movement happens. I believe the links can overcenter without "getting shorter", as the moement isn't great, just getting the centerpoint of the pivot above centerline by a small amount, but I would guess are sometimes short to avoid a time consuming fitting process. Parts are made within parameters, some being shorter than others, and they are the ones that already have a strike against them from the beginning. I may be mistaken in my understanding of this, and welcome more learned comments.
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adirondakjack
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by adirondakjack »

Mike D. wrote:Some of the HV ammo stated on the box "not for revolvers and Model 1873 rifles". I did inadvertently fire a HV .44 W.C.F round through my 1902 vintage SA Colt. Thankfully, no damage to the gun or to me. :o
HV .44-40 ammo was eventually pulled from production because of folks having issues when using it in beat up old '73s. Ya don't suppose Winchester wanted to stop selling it because they were allergic to money??? It was after all a pretty spicy round for the time.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by adirondakjack »

Malamute wrote:
Leverdude wrote:
adirondakjack wrote:Here's the problem as I see it. IF a '73 is properly fitted up, with the links over-centering upon closing the lever, it is a pretty strong action. The problem is, far too many '73s leave the factory with links a hair too short to allow them to fully over-center upon lock-up, and may even have wide head space right from the start, allowing each shot to "hammer" the bolt, links and lever, until the lever actually bends, widens head space, accelerates the problem, etc.

So YES a strong '73 CAN be made, but the consumer cannot count on any particular rifle being able to take the pounding without shooting loose over even a fairly small number of rounds.

Exactly. In addition, since the links over center to lock up head space has to be on the long side or it wouldnt close on a cartridge. They are longest while inline & then open a smidge as the pivot goes over center.
.....

I'm not sure that's an accurate description of how the overcenter movement happens. I believe the links can overcenter without "getting shorter", as the moement isn't great, just getting the centerpoint of the pivot above centerline by a small amount, but I would guess are sometimes short to avoid a time consuming fitting process. Parts are made within parameters, some being shorter than others, and they are the ones that already have a strike against them from the beginning. I may be mistaken in my understanding of this, and welcome more learned comments.
The links do not overcenter a great deal, and in truth, even a dead straight line between all three pins isn't a "bad" lockup. But I''ve had the side plate off several '73s from Uberti only to find that when the lever is fully closed, the center pin is still BELOW a line drawn between the two "fixed plane" end pins, leaving us with a situation where the bolt pushes back against the links and lever, tries to push the center pin down, and will actually bend the lever over time, causing the rifle to "grow" head space until the firing pin can no longer reliably ignite cases as the extractor has been holding em "on the hook" and it is now battered loose, allowing cases to slip the hook and fail to ignite. The fix, believe it or not, is to mount the lever in a vise and bend it until the proper lockup geometry (over center, or at least dead straight) is restored.

it doesn't take a "big" load to cause this battering either. Even "popgun" CAS loads will eventually batter the poorly fitted links until this problem shows. This might even be MORE an issue with light loads where the brass doesn't expand to "grab" the chamber and retard reward case motion and bolt thrust.
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olyinaz
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by olyinaz »

For a guy who's already set up to load .44 mag or for a fella like me who pretty much only shoots factory .44 "mag" cowboy loads, the whole issue seems moot to me. I despise shooting full house .44 mags out of both pistols and lever guns (obviously I am not a fan of heavy recoil). So be it - cowboy loads shoot dang nice and keep me and my .44 mag revolver in an ongoing love triangle! Add one of these Uberti rifles and it could be .429 inches of pure heaven, four ways around!! :D

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RIHMFIRE
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by RIHMFIRE »

hightime wrote:I have for years been buying one lever gun or another and getting one or two elements of the '73 in each. It was time to get it all in the 1873 Special Sporting Rifle. $1,200 seemed OK for the best looking rifle in the safe.

Owen
Very good looking 73............nice!

as for the strength of the new uberti 73s.......
I would not hesitate to shoot factory loads in any of the calibers
they provide...357, 38-40, 44, 44-40, 45, and 45LC
However I reload my own and stay in the middle of the road!
LETS GO SHOOT'N BOYS
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Leverdude »

Malamute wrote:
Leverdude wrote:
adirondakjack wrote:Here's the problem as I see it. IF a '73 is properly fitted up, with the links over-centering upon closing the lever, it is a pretty strong action. The problem is, far too many '73s leave the factory with links a hair too short to allow them to fully over-center upon lock-up, and may even have wide head space right from the start, allowing each shot to "hammer" the bolt, links and lever, until the lever actually bends, widens head space, accelerates the problem, etc.

So YES a strong '73 CAN be made, but the consumer cannot count on any particular rifle being able to take the pounding without shooting loose over even a fairly small number of rounds.

Exactly. In addition, since the links over center to lock up head space has to be on the long side or it wouldnt close on a cartridge. They are longest while inline & then open a smidge as the pivot goes over center.
.....

I'm not sure that's an accurate description of how the overcenter movement happens. I believe the links can overcenter without "getting shorter", as the moement isn't great, just getting the centerpoint of the pivot above centerline by a small amount, but I would guess are sometimes short to avoid a time consuming fitting process. Parts are made within parameters, some being shorter than others, and they are the ones that already have a strike against them from the beginning. I may be mistaken in my understanding of this, and welcome more learned comments.
I'm not saying its noticably shorter, but it has to be shorter. That coupled with varying rim thicknesses will leave room for the hammering Adirondakjack was talking about and theres nothing but the links & lever to absorb it. I dont think they will just fall apart but gradually shoot loose. Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm just speculating and dont have any actually experience with them anyway. I like digging into the mechanics of things though & was always suprised that the toggle link was as strong as it is. I'm pretty sure there was alot more hand fitting in the old ones than now but we can produce parts to closer tolerances now too so maybe it doesnt matter.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by perry owens »

I can't add to the technical discussion but I can input my experience. I acquired a used 1873 carbine in .357 magnum by Euroarms of Brescia in 1989. Since then it must have fired upwards of 30000 rounds of handloaded ammunition - my standard load is 15 grains of 2400 under a 158 grain lead RNFP, average velocity 1640 fps. The only thing that has gone wrong is the little lug that holds the cartridge rim up on to the extractor sheared off last year. I silver soldered a replacement on and am back in business.
All guns sold here have to pass UK proof, which I believe is 25% over SAAMI specs. Before proof firing the case is oiled to maximise bolt thrust.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by JerryB »

Like Malamute said, the H.V. loads said on the box RIFLE ONLY. I bought a lot of them when I was young to shoot in my 1892 32wcf, wish they were still available.
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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by Mossyoak1957 »

hightime wrote:I have for years been buying one lever gun or another and getting one or two elements of the '73 in each. It was time to get it all in the 1873 Special Sporting Rifle. $1,200 seemed OK for the best looking rifle in the safe.

Owen
Hey that's my rifle...lol!
Mine is just the little old 32-20 and I love it.

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by getitdone1 »

While 44 mag and 357 mag are not what they shot in the old days or 'true to the history' of the gun you get significantly more performance. Pretty good trade-off. You're still true to the size and appearance.

And.....I need at least one 357 mag! One that has better steel and is brand new helps too.

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Re: Strength of New 1873 ?

Post by pricedo »

Apparently the '73 is preferred by shooters of black powder cartridges because the receiver is much easier to strip apart for cleaning than a '76, '86 a '92 or a '94.

The hydroscopic salts & residues left from exploding black powder are extremely corrosive and a thorough cleaning is absolutely necessary.
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