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Author Topic: Fanning  (Read 2321 times)
Beebs
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« on: June 06, 2005, 10:06:53 AM »

I'd be impressed if anyones first impression of this title to be the famous General of The Republic of Texas with a 'g' added on it.
Anyway, does anyone happen to have any information of fanning a pistol. For those who don't know what this is it is the cool trick Clint Easwood pulls in all his movie of using his hand to cock the pistol for rapid firing, a common trick.
Does anyone know anything about fanning that would be of any interest?
Thanks

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Concorde
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"Finally, I believe ONLY in dynamite...."


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« Reply #1 on: June 09, 2005, 07:08:58 PM »

Well, I've done a lot of shooting with single action pistols (I own replicas of three Colts -- 1873, 1877 and 1894) but have never "fanned" any of them with live ammo. The Single Action Shooting Society expressly bans this dangerous practice in its open competitions, although some trick shooters will demonstrate it during special exhibitions at SASS events.

The most important preparation before attempting it is to have a professional gunsmith give the pistol an "action job," which means drastically altering the internal springs so that the hammer pulls back much, much easier and the trigger pulls back much, much easier. Most guns that are "set up" for this also have a special "fanning hammer" with a wider flat area on the hammer's spur, so it's easier to cock very quickly.

Generally speaking you cannot fan a new pistol straight out of the factory box. It has to be modified by a gunsmith or else the springs must be worn down through constant use over the years, which can achieve the same effect.

The problem with making the hammer spring lighter (which makes the gun easier to cock) is that if you make it too light, it won't strike the cartridge with enough force to punch the primer, and therefore it won't make the bullet go off. I had a wonderful action job done on my 1877, which makes the gun delightfully slick and easy to cock and fire, even with one hand -- but the hammer falls so lightly that certain brands of bullets simply won't fire because the spring doesn't make the hammer strike hard enough any more. I've taken those "dud" rounds out of the gun, loaded them into an unmodified revolver, and =BANG= off they go!

Anyway, fanning is very dangerous and should never be attempted with live ammo. Even the trick-shooters at the exhibitions usually use wax bullets in their cartridges. I once saw a guy "fan" with the five fingers of his right hand, each finger flicking the hammer back just enough to rotate the cylinder and bring up a fresh round. He popped five ballons arranged in sequence horizontally in less than seven seconds.

 Shocked

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KERMIT
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« Reply #2 on: June 09, 2005, 09:48:10 PM »

perhaps this is what tuco is assembling in the gun shop.
a weapon that will fan easily. 

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Beebs
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« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2005, 08:41:28 AM »

Thanks for the information Concorde, I always have been interested in fanning but had heard gun smiths advise never to do it. You said you have a 1873 replica. Where did you get it and was it much. I'm just 15 but think it would be a good investment for a beginner. I've been looking for an 1873 Peacemaker .45 with a 5 1/2 in barrel for some time now. I'd be happy to know where you found your '73. I've looked at Uberti but all the finishes don't quite meet my fancy if you know what I mean. too whoop dee doo for me. I'm looking for one just like Eastwood had. That'd be perfect.

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Concorde
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« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2005, 10:12:12 AM »


The Uberti guns are imported by a Texas company called Cimarron which gives them very nice "makeovers." I own their Doc Holliday model which cost so much I'm embarrased to say (near four figures).

http://www.cimarron-firearms.com/


The most reliable and most durable replicas are made by Ruger, although they have modern safety features sneaked into their designs, which makes some purists deride them. These are terrific guns, though, almost indestructible and 100% trustworthy. I own two, which each cost less than half what I paid for the Cimarron.

http://www.ruger-firearms.com/Firearms/P-CategoryRevolversSA.html



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