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  #1  
Old 06-26-2017, 08:32 AM
1911MK IV 1911MK IV is offline
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John Wayne cowboy movies (the winchester round??).

Even though my forfathers are Vikings and I live in Scandinavia I'm a great fan of western movies and especially The Duke.

Yesterday I watched Liberty Vallance (excuse me for any misspelling) from 1962, and last Sunday I had the pleasure of watching Rooater Cogburn from 1975.

13 years between the movies. Now in both he carries what seems to be the same holster with the same revolverrounds in all the loops except the middle loop on the back. Here he carries a rifle round (must be a Winchester round).

Why?

I'm assuming it is a tactical thing? Something like "when I get to the rifleround i know I'm half out of pistol ammunition" or some similar reason.
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  #2  
Old 06-26-2017, 08:37 AM
Steam Boat Steam Boat is offline
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Google is your friend...... The explanation makes sense though....

https://truewestmagazine.com/why-doe...t-in-his-belt/
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  #3  
Old 06-26-2017, 08:58 AM
LimaCharlie LimaCharlie is offline
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I never figured out why Steve McQueen carried .45/70 ammo on his belt when his gun was a .44-40.
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  #4  
Old 06-26-2017, 09:26 AM
Jim Watson Jim Watson is offline
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I have not heard the "separate .44 from .45" legend before, but it makes sense.
A Texas Ranger jammed his .44 Winchester with a .45 Colt cartridge, unscrewed the sideplate, cleared the jam, and resumed the battle. He bought a .44 revolver the next time he was in town. I have seen that to happen on the CAS range.

On the other hand, there was the Sheriff who had a .44 case to split in his revolver and changed to .45. I have not seen that, modern brass is better, but a .44-40 fired in a .45 Colt gun will just bloop the bullet out gently.
  #5  
Old 06-26-2017, 09:39 AM
retsgt retsgt is offline
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The 45-70 round located in the middle of his cartridge belt would be an indicator of how many rounds he has left: half way through his supply. As I read, he picked this up from an old cowboy back in the day.
  #6  
Old 06-26-2017, 10:05 AM
Freedom101 Freedom101 is offline
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In reality wouldn't most "cowboys" in the old west have carried revolvers in 38-40 or 44-40 due to the fact that the 1873 and 1892 Winchesters were not chambered in 45 Colt? I would think most would have wanted their handgun and rifle in the same caliber. Although about half of the 1st Gen Colt SAA revolvers were chambered in 45 Colt.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but a little research shows that no major manufacturer made a lever action in 45 Colt until 1985.

I've also wondered why almost every western shows the actors with the 1892 Carbine. It seems it's never a rifle, or a Model 1873. Wouldn't the Model 1873 be a more accurate depiction of the era in the movies?
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  #7  
Old 06-26-2017, 10:05 AM
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Was the rifle round in the middle of the belt, as related in the link above?
I thought it was near one end, which would support the idea that it was a warning that ammo was running low.
Also, it's my understanding that the sixgun Wayne used in his earlier movies was a .38-40, rather than a .44 or .45, but the rounds on his belt would almost certainly be for show, rather than for onscreen use, so the calibers wouldn't matter.

EDIT: It does appear that the rifle round was in the middle of Duke's back, but that meant it was much closer to one end of the row of ammo loops than the other; nothing definitive, but it looks like 20+ loops to the left, and maybe 12 to the right.
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Last edited by RickB; 06-26-2017 at 10:13 AM.
  #8  
Old 06-26-2017, 10:08 AM
MitchAlsup MitchAlsup is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Freedom101 View Post
I've also wondered why almost every western shows the actors with the 1892 Carbine. It seems it's never a rifle, or a Model 1873. Wouldn't the Model 1873 be a more accurate depiction of the era in the movies?
Rare and expensive.

And most of the viewing public would not notice or care.
  #9  
Old 06-26-2017, 10:23 AM
M Yaworski M Yaworski is offline
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I have a memory of reading an interview with John Wayne back in the 70s. In it, he commented on his big cartridge. He said that early on in his movie career, an old guy who had been a gun fighter had told him that he did that to let him know when he was running low on ammo. Wayne like the idea and adopted it for all of his movies after that.

I also recall reading that the large loop on the Winchester was developed by Wayne' friend and stuntman, Yakima Kanutt, for "Stagecoach."
  #10  
Old 06-26-2017, 10:23 AM
Freedom101 Freedom101 is offline
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Mitch, I thought about that, but at the time these westerns were made the price between the 92 and 73, and their availability, wouldn't really have been a factor. Same thing for the SRC versus the rifles. Although the 1892 SRC does fit the image nicely in these movies!
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  #11  
Old 06-26-2017, 10:53 AM
M Yaworski M Yaworski is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LimaCharlie View Post
I never figured out why Steve McQueen carried .45/70 ammo on his belt when his gun was a .44-40.
Because it looked badass. Seriously.
  #12  
Old 06-26-2017, 11:02 AM
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In "Winchester '73" a real, genuine custom 1873 was used throughout the movie. However at the same time one character was complaining about his Henry not having the power or the 1873, yet the rifle he held was also an 1873, albeit a plain-jane version.

I think we should be grateful that Hollywood gets it right as often as they do. Most people in film making are not gun enthusiasts and they will do whatever is more convenient or creates the desired effect. An example is Keanu Reeves blazing away with 9mm subguns in The Matrix but with larger, more impressive-looking .223 brass hitting the floor.
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  #13  
Old 06-26-2017, 11:59 AM
Dangerous Dangerous is offline
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That old gunfighter who told to use it as an indicator on supply was probably some dude named Wyatt Earp. Earp was a technical adviser in Hollywood and a frequent lunch companion of Wayne.
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  #14  
Old 06-26-2017, 12:25 PM
1911crazy 1911crazy is offline
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The riflemans lever action was in 44-40. The 44-40 caliber was very popular in its day.

What was the biggest caliber in a lever actionin the old west?
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  #15  
Old 06-26-2017, 12:35 PM
UncleEd UncleEd is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LimaCharlie View Post
I never figured out why Steve McQueen carried .45/70 ammo on his belt when his gun was a .44-40.
Pure showmanship, implying that he had some kind of special powerful
hand pistol/rifle.

In truth McQueen hated the entire rig. If you watch enough episodes,
you'll notice he carried the gun belt with holstered weapon in his hand
or over his shoulder or had it resting on his saddle horn.

And if you watch enough of the episodes, you'll notice he fans the hammer
and seldom uses the lever to get multiple shots.

Wearing that stupid rig must have been like having an upper leg brace
and just very uncomfortable.
  #16  
Old 06-26-2017, 12:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dangerous View Post
That old gunfighter who told to use it as an indicator on supply was probably some dude named Wyatt Earp. Earp was a technical adviser in Hollywood and a frequent lunch companion of Wayne.
Earp died in '29; I've heard he was familiar with Tom Mix, William S. Hart, and other silent-era cowboy actors, but Wayne made his first movie in '26, and wasn't credited in a movie until '32.
I've seen the "old cowboy told Wayne" story recounted in a number of places, but don't remember the identity being revealed.
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  #17  
Old 06-26-2017, 12:54 PM
kurusu kurusu is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1911crazy View Post
The riflemans lever action was in 44-40. The 44-40 caliber was very popular in its day.

What was the biggest caliber in a lever actionin the old west?
That I know of .50 -110 in the Winchester 1886, but was only introduced in 1899.
  #18  
Old 06-26-2017, 01:08 PM
M Yaworski M Yaworski is offline
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Wearing that stupid rig must have been like having an upper leg brace and just very uncomfortable.
Unlike having a leg brace, it paid very well.
  #19  
Old 06-26-2017, 01:08 PM
Jim Watson Jim Watson is offline
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A 92 probably feeds blanks better than a 73. Lighter, too.
  #20  
Old 06-26-2017, 01:39 PM
MitchAlsup MitchAlsup is offline
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There are a lot of old west movies purportedly right after the civil war ends where the guns are 1873 Peacemakers and 1873 Winchesters (years early).
But the thing that gets me is that they invariably are shooting smokeless powders (3 decades early)
  #21  
Old 06-26-2017, 02:46 PM
joegerardi joegerardi is offline
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Originally Posted by Freedom101 View Post
I've also wondered why almost every western shows the actors with the 1892 Carbine. It seems it's never a rifle, or a Model 1873. Wouldn't the Model 1873 be a more accurate depiction of the era in the movies?
Because Hollywood bought a huge amount of Winchester 1892 rifles, and it's what they had in stock. Thus, they are what was used.

..Joe
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Old 06-26-2017, 03:04 PM
BDHillman BDHillman is offline
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I seem to remember he carried a .32-20 in all his movies.

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  #23  
Old 06-26-2017, 03:06 PM
kurusu kurusu is offline
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Originally Posted by MitchAlsup View Post
There are a lot of old west movies purportedly right after the civil war ends where the guns are 1873 Peacemakers and 1873 Winchesters (years early).
But the thing that gets me is that they invariably are shooting smokeless powders (3 decades early)
You can add the high capacty cylinders to that one.

It's Hollywood, who cares.
  #24  
Old 06-26-2017, 03:34 PM
n4aof n4aof is offline
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Originally Posted by Jim Watson View Post
I have not heard the "separate .44 from .45" legend before, but it makes sense.
A Texas Ranger jammed his .44 Winchester with a .45 Colt cartridge, unscrewed the sideplate, cleared the jam, and resumed the battle. He bought a .44 revolver the next time he was in town. I have seen that to happen on the CAS range.

On the other hand, there was the Sheriff who had a .44 case to split in his revolver and changed to .45. I have not seen that, modern brass is better, but a .44-40 fired in a .45 Colt gun will just bloop the bullet out gently.
Which brings us to the same question that crossed my mind while reading the explanation about keeping the two calibers separated.... Why would any sane person who had a choice carry a revolver in one caliber and a carbine in the other in the first place.
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Old 06-26-2017, 03:39 PM
bad2006z71 bad2006z71 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dsk View Post
In "Winchester '73" a real, genuine custom 1873 was used throughout the movie. However at the same time one character was complaining about his Henry not having the power or the 1873, yet the rifle he held was also an 1873, albeit a plain-jane version.

I think we should be grateful that Hollywood gets it right as often as they do. Most people in film making are not gun enthusiasts and they will do whatever is more convenient or creates the desired effect. An example is Keanu Reeves blazing away with 9mm subguns in The Matrix but with larger, more impressive-looking .223 brass hitting the floor.
Matrix was still a good movie, Reeves seems to have taken a better interest in making gun "play" in his movies more realistic as the Wick movies were pretty good.
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