“God made man but Samuel Colt made them equal.”
This Guide is a continuation of RPGChat’s Ammunition and Firearm Guide
It is continued from this Blog Post
A history of the Revolver
The first revolver used the flintlock mechanism (basically a hammer strikes a piece of flint held by a pair of jaws) and was created by a man named Elisha Collier (Click HERE for a picture) in the 18th century (1814). The flintlock revolver, however, became obsolete when Samuel Colt invented the Colt Paterson Revolver utilizing Rev. Alexander John Forsyth’s Percussion Cap mechanism in 1836. The first cartridge revolver was created by Smith & Wesson in 1856.
Revolvers, since their creation, have become commonplace amongst military and law enforcement as well as personal defense and continued to be standard until the twentieth century when semi-automatic pistols were developed. The Semi-Automatic pistol could could more rounds and had less of a reload time when compared to the revolver plus their flat shape made them ideal for concealed carry.
Automatic pistols, since, have been replacing revolvers in military and law enforcement usage.
Revolvers, despite the invention of Semi-Automatic Pistols, are still quite commonly seen as back-up weapons and personal defense due to their reliability, accuracy, and simplicity.
The Revolver and it’s parts
I will now explain the components of the Revolver.
Front Sight Post/Rear Sight Post:
The cylinder, in firearms, refers to the cylindrical and rotating compondent of a revolver that houses multiple chambers of which rounds can be inserted into. The Cylinder revolves around an axis in the revolver and brings each chamber (regardless of whether or not it contains a round) into alignment between the barrel for firing and the hammer behind it that ignites the primer. The Cylinder rotates one chamber each time the hammer is ‘cocked’ or 60 degrees , with six shooters.
There is a gap between the cylinder and the barrel as well as between the cylinder and the hammer. Because of this gap, the Revolver is generally incompadible with Sound Suppressors. Work has been done on Suppressor compadible versions of the Revolver (such as the Nagant M1895) but are rarely seen or used.
The Hammer is a piece of metal that uses a system of springs and locks that connect with the Trigger and Cylinder. When Cocked, the Hammer rotates the Cylinder and locks in the back position.
The Hammer is the backbone of the revolver, without it you have a hunk of metal. When the lock on the Hammer is released, it snaps forward and contacts the primer on the back of the round aligned in the cylinder. This impact ignites the primer which ignites the gunpowder inside the round’s cartridge and ejects the round forward at high velocity down the barrel.
Types of Cylinders Load/Unload Designs
Front Loading Design
The Front Loading Design is similar to that of a musket. The Chamber is aligned with the barrel and powder is placed into the chamber followed by an oversized round. Then the cylinder is rotated and the process repeats for each chamber.
Also known as the Cap and Ball design.
Fixed Cylinder Designs
The most modern method for loading and unloading. The Swing Out Cylinder Design. The Cylinder, mounted on a pivot that is coaxial with the chambers, swings out and down (to the left for right handed firers, swing out to the right version are available but often have to be custom made and are fairly rare). An Extractor is present, operated by a rod at the front of the cylinder, that ejects all fired rounds simultaneously. It doesn’t fire unused rounds because they are slightly longer than the spent rounds and thus don’t get pushed out entirely.
This style of cylinder loading design allows for a ‘Speed Reloader’ to be used. A Speed Reloader is a device that holds six rounds in the shape of the cylinder. It’s pushed against the chambers and a latch is pressed that releases the rounds in the speedreloader and allows for it to come free without the rounds. A Revolver with a side cylinder design and a speed reloader is the pinacle of Revolver design.