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Lil
03-10-2012, 09:42 PM
If one fired a .36 caliber Colt Navy Revolver twice, would the barrel be hot? As in too hot to be comfortably pushed into the waistband of one's trousers?

backslashbaby
03-10-2012, 10:24 PM
Yes, says my resident firearms expert :) Something about the kind of powder that it burns, if that helps any.

blacbird
03-11-2012, 01:40 AM
This is probably a major reason why most people who carried a firearm of this sort did so in a leather holster.

caw

Cathy C
03-11-2012, 01:57 AM
It would be a tad uncomfortable (have shot one), but it wouldn't burn you. Especially if you had a muslin or linsey-woolsey shirt tucked in (which was common in the day) plus were wearing a Union Suit underneath (also common.) Even if you fired the full six, you could still hold it by the barrel. But the hand is tougher than the tummy, so... hard to say. I think you could play it either way. Maybe someone put too hot a load of gunpowder in. Would kick like a mule besides.:Shrug:

Lil
03-11-2012, 02:40 AM
Thank you, folks. I guess he will just have to hold on to it for a bit while it cools off.

One mistake avoided.

blacbird
03-11-2012, 06:34 AM
Maybe someone put too hot a load of gunpowder in. Would kick like a mule besides.:Shrug:

Not this, methinks. It's a revolver, a gun designed to fire standard cartridges, loaded at the breech via the revolving mechanism. No measurement of powder involved.

caw

GeorgeK
03-11-2012, 03:48 PM
. Maybe someone put too hot a load of gunpowder in. Would kick like a mule besides.:Shrug:

That's possible since the 1851 Colt was a cap and ball revolver. If someone was in a hurry or if their powder flask wasn't exactly up to par, it'd be easy to overload it. That would also make the barrel get hotter.

blacbird
03-12-2012, 12:12 AM
That's possible since the 1851 Colt was a cap and ball revolver. If someone was in a hurry or if their powder flask wasn't exactly up to par, it'd be easy to overload it. That would also make the barrel get hotter.

Thanks. I stand corrected in thinking it was a cartridge-loading weapon.

caw

JDKinman
03-22-2012, 08:53 AM
I have an old Navy .36 cap/ball revolver and firing two rounds does not heat up the barrel anywhere enough that would cause the skin to scorch if it was tucked in a waistband.

As was pointed out by a fellow Texan, odds are high that the character would also be wearing appropriate undergarments that would preclude direct contact with the skin.

Furthermore, those old .36 caliber guns were blued as stainless models were still just a few years (decades) away, and blued barrels and cylinders dissipate the heat generated far better than do stainless.

For what it's worth, I first read this question, then earlier today, went to my favorite range and loaded up the cylinder, fired off two quick shots, paused for a few seconds as though I was "taking it all in what I'd just done," then (VERY CAREFULLY) shoved the old revolver in my waistband.

It was warmer than the ambient temperature, but not even close to being uncomfortable.

Dave Hardy
03-24-2012, 12:46 AM
I built a Navy Colt from a kit years ago. It took a lot more than two shots for the barrel to become uncomfortably hot.

From firing modern .38s (certifying as a armed guard), you can get a revolver hot enough to be quite uncomfortable after firing six rounds. And of course repeated firing gets it even hotter. This becomes noticeable when you break open the revolver and dump the spent cartridges (burnt my knuckles).

But, if you are in a situation where life is on the line, a bit of a scorch must not distract you. Shooters with cap and ball pistols have to deal with thick smoke, burning powder, and perhaps even spent caps falling into uncomfortable places. Guys who let such discomforts prevent them from doing what they had too did not last long.

BTW, I discovered an odd trick for preventing spent caps from catching in a pistol's action. The shooter fires, then raises his arm vertically while cocking the pistol. If the spent cap falls, it should fall away from the pistol. Juan Soto used the technique in his famous (and fatal) shoot out with Sheriff Harry Morse of Alameda Co, CA.