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Thread: Uberti 1873 Single-Action copies? Good, Bad, or other?

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Inland Northwest
    Feedback Score
    27 (100%)
    Quote Originally Posted by Sid Post View Post
    I've been thinking about getting a classic 1873 Single-Action revolver. I'm not interested in picking up a Ruger FWIW. An original Colt of any generation is easily over $2K so, not cost-effective for me today.

    My understanding is that they can't handle Ruger-only loads safely but, are good to go with standard modern loadings which should duplicate in a general way the 45ACP that so many fanboys love in their 1911's. Subsonic 250gr loads and lighter ~1,000FPS options are what I'm interested in.

    For those who have owned or shot them, how do they compare to other similar options like the Pietta's which I think are distributed by Beretta? A classic 1873 in 44Mag would be ideal for me though, I would most likely run 44SPL+ equivalent or soft 44 Mag loads exclusively if that option came my way.

    What similar options have I possibly overlooked? I'm looking for something easy to load for that has enough power to handle an aggressive dog or possibly a feral hog while being easy to load for with common reloading components and in a modern caliber that isn't likely to be hoarded by new gun owners fearing public unrest, defunding police, general civil unrest, etc.

    Would a black-powder only 1873 or 1858 Remington be a viable option? Black powder pistols are a real unknown to me but, with hoarding or simply ammunition shortages driven by all the new shooters, I occasionally wonder if an 1873/1858 BP revolver would be a reasonable choice as a distant 'second-place' option.

    I will also clarify that this isn't really intended to be a classic 'self-defense' option for me as I have other pistols, rifles and, shotguns that would all be vastly superior for use against any criminal elements or general civil unrest scenarios so those thoughts aren't really a part of my purchase decision today. Dogs and hogs, yes. Bad people, no.

    In general, Italian replicas are good quality. Any 1873 or copy is absolutely unsuitable for Ruger-only loads. I doubt any of them are available in .44 Mag.

    Black powder revolvers are viable since you can purchase aftermarket cylinders for them allowing you to shoot centerfire cartridges (.45 Colt out a .44 caliber gun, for example). Pressure levels definitely must be kept to black powder levels, however.

    Any reason you're not interested in a Ruger? They've always been the standard for inexpensive, quality revolvers.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Texas, USA
    Feedback Score
    1 (100%)
    I haven't owned or shot any of the Vaqueros old or new so, they are a bit of an unknown. The Blackhawks I owned seemed serviceable but a little rough around the edges. Where I live, finding a Ruger single action is a bit of a unicorn, and online pricing these days is much higher so the leap to a Colt SAA is not that unreasonable. When I owned my Blackhawks, they were relatively low cost and an authentic Colt SAA was easily over $2K.

    Today, a Colt SAA can be found in the ~$1500 range if you are patient which is about twice or a little less than a modern Ruger single-action option. Colt quality and nostalgia with a SAA is hard to beat and today its price is within reach of many potential gun owners as well.

    This has me considering old-school black powder only or more modern cartridge options from Italy which are ~$400 to ~$800 and are popular with the SASS crowd.

    In terms of 'power' and general utility, a black-powder only model has enough "juice" so, Ruger-only load capability might be nice but, isn't needed. Old school black powder might be fun for a change of pace. When 45 Colt loads are scarce for whatever reason, a small ammo can with percussion caps and some black powder and a bullet mold would provide a lot of recreational shooting fun too when 9mm and 22lr are in short supply. However, the convenience of cartridges is really attractive to me.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Feedback Score
    I gave about $1,500 each for my (two) new Colt SAA’s 10-12 years ago so $1,500 really isn’t out of line. As far as the Rugers, I wouldn’t say any of mine (purchased new within the past ten years) are “a little rough around the edges”. We used to joke about the “Ruger Recall-of-the-Month Club” around the squadroom but they’ve really upped their game. Instead of putting their billboard lawyer warning on the side they now put them on the bottom of the barrel. If they have an integral lock, it’s hidden under the grips (and some of mine didn’t come with the lock). I don’t own any Ruger stock but I can recommend their firearms.

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