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Thread: not enough windage adjustment on iron sights

  1. #1
    Boolit Bub
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    not enough windage adjustment on iron sights

    Okay fellas, I've been wandering the halls here, and have found alot of great information, and if I ever find a cure for something that ya'll haven't already remedied, I'll proudly post it. BUT, for now I need some of your thoughts.
    I have an Interarms Rossi M92, stainless, .357 that arrived in as new condition, without normal wear indicators. Since, it has been well broken in and tweaked as is commonly necessary with these rifles. Recently, I added a dovetail front sight, eliminating the barrel banded front, and added a Skinner Low Pro. Front dovetail is level and square to the receiver and Low Pro is centered and "plumb" to the bolt and receiver. Previously the front band had to be turned to the right as much as mag tube alignment and band pin would allow and rear drifted a bit to the left to center POI. Forgeting (seems to happen more frequently lately) the mathematical reality that as sight radius lengthens, the amount of movement necessary to correct windage increases, I believed all would be well. Many "well"s later (and quite a few "well h_ll"s for good measure) I find that the front sight has to be nearly off the right side of the barrel to get centered POI at 50 yards. I've tried different powders, charges, boolits, O.A.L., etc. resulting in varying elevations and group sizes, but not much effect on windage. I've loosened and even removed barrel bands and forend. Different rests and holds don't offer relief. Barrel is straight and pristine, without fouling or leading. Groups are great,(with the right load) just too far to right of POA. The crown appears uniform, but I don't have tools to measure any discrepancy. I'll be taking it to the local gunsmith this week for his evaluation but what thinketh ye? I have "regulated" shotguns by careful muzzle alteration, but can a rifle be recrowned or the crown lapped to correct windage? What possible cause and cure is there? Comments? Ideas? Derogatory remarks?

  2. #2
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    Just for experimenting, hold the rifle at arms length ,and look at the top of the receiver, and the barrel. Do they appear to be straight? Sometimes they are off far enough to be noticeable even to the naked eye. When you say the barrel is straight, do you know how to read the light bars in a barrel?
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  3. #3
    Boolit Bub
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    Thanks, waksupi. No, I do know how to read light bars. By straight, I mean exterior appearance and measuring with straightedge off of receiver flats, (which I know is not necessarily an indication of bore alignment), wall thickness around breach and muzzle are uniform by calipers, and the arms length "eyeball" measure looks good. Looking through the bore does not appear problematic, but how are light bars read?

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    After spending a week explaining this to another member, I am kind a gun shy about trying to explain it, but here goes.
    The best way to train your eye for it, is to first look through a shot gun barrel. The rings will be clearly seen, through the full length of the barrel. Notice they are all concentric, or should be!
    This same light bar situation is found in a rifle barrel, but harder to see for an untrained eye. The light bars are still there, but the rifling grooves make it more difficult for some people to see. I tried training a couple other guys at Serengeti how to read them, and they never could see them.
    If the light bars do not run concentric, you should be able to detect which direction the barrel would be bent, by the narrower rings on one side of the barrel.
    I inspected hundreds of barrels for the company, and could tell if they would shoot or not. If they weren't good, back to the manufacturer they would go.
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  5. #5
    Boolit Bub
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    Thanks again for your reply. I was searching for further information on reading the light bars before you explained further. I think I understand what you are talking about, and will try seeing the indicators. Should the barrel be removed or can a bore light in the chamber be used? If removing the barrel is required, should a direct light or reflected light on a white wall be used? If there is an indication of non-concentric rings, what can be done to correct it? I've heard of shotgun tubes being "bent" to correct pattern center, but that un-nerves the senses (it does mine anyway) when discussing a rifle barrel!

    Edit: Was distracted when I wrote that. Didn't think about removing the bolt for direct barrel sighting. Does it matter if viewed from breach or muzzle? Is one more noticeable than other?
    I ain't really plumb dumb, just some dumb!
    Last edited by Ready on the Right; 11-10-2011 at 01:48 PM. Reason: correction

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ready on the Right View Post
    Thanks again for your reply. I was searching for further information on reading the light bars before you explained further. I think I understand what you are talking about, and will try seeing the indicators. Should the barrel be removed or can a bore light in the chamber be used? If removing the barrel is required, should a direct light or reflected light on a white wall be used? If there is an indication of non-concentric rings, what can be done to correct it? I've heard of shotgun tubes being "bent" to correct pattern center, but that un-nerves the senses (it does mine anyway) when discussing a rifle barrel!

    Edit: Was distracted when I wrote that. Didn't think about removing the bolt for direct barrel sighting. Does it matter if viewed from breach or muzzle? Is one more noticeable than other?
    I ain't really plumb dumb, just some dumb!
    As long as you can get enough clean light through the barrel, you should be able to see them. I look at a fluorescent light, or blue sky usually.
    The only correction I know would be bending, or replacement.
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  7. #7
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    There is a picture of the light bars here: http://castboolits.gunloads.com/member.php?u=14138
    Those who fail to study history are doomed to repeat it.

    “A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity”. Sigmund
    Freud

  8. #8
    Boolit Bub
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    Way ahead of you waksupi. Did as you suggested and looked at some shotgun tubes until I thought I knew what to look for, and along the way discovered a flourescent tube in my shop gave the best light to discern the bars. Looked long and hard at the rifle barrel, turning it, changing eyes, looking from close to the muzzle and from a few inches away, until I was satisfied that what I thought I saw was really what I was seeing. After contemplating it and deciding that the options were limited, I re-nerved my senses and pulled the mag tube and forend, blocked the receiver and muzzle up on lead ingots, took a preliminary measurement from barrel to bench, and put a clamp to the middle. Sure has an unsettling effect, seeing that barrel deflecting the way it did, but I knew there would be some spring back. After a few trials, it finally took a set, and I moved the front sight back to center, and went out on the deck to see how badly I had messed up a fun little rifle. Three shots later, I was pleased to see a nice little group within 1 1/2" of POA. Ran back into the shop to put the hardware back in place and shoot a few more rounds for record, but it got too dark. Glad to find that I had unknowingly come to the same conclusion that you would suggest. The outside appearance is not noticeably changed. If I didn't know it had been "flexed" (just can't bring myself to say I "bent" my barrel) I'd have a difficult time seeing it.
    Oneokie, great picture, and it confirms that I did properly identify the bars. Thanks much to you both.

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    Glad you found the problem, have fun!
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  10. #10
    Boolit Bub
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    Another success creditable to the collaborative knowledge of some of the best minds in cast boolitology, and gunsmithery! (Yeah, sounds like B.S., but it flows well, huh?) Thanks again, sir.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master

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    One time at rendevous I straightend a barrel on a trade gun by bending it in the crotch of an oak tree, rather extreme but done carefully and it then shot POA. The first time I put a barrel in a press and straightened it I thought my heart would give out. It always amazes me that no one test fires a gun any more. I had three Rough Rider revolvers come in last month and NONE of them would even fire. Thanks to quality control like this I am eating again this month. IMHO thre is NO reason that this S#i! shouldn't be caught at the factory. Glad Waksupi got you up and going again.

  12. #12
    Boolit Bub
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    Ya know KCSO, all that I've ever been lead to believe about a rifled barrel dictates that what I did would result in a marginal shooting firearm. I read some sucess stories like yours on muzzle loader forums, but discounted them as only applying to "primative" guns. I've heard of it being done to "scattergun" tubes sucessfully. But I was almost certain that my little Rossi would never group right again after treating that barrel as barbarically as I did. Yesterday afternoon, I got around to trying to get the sights regulated, and to my astonishment, the front being maybe a few thousandths off center, and still shooting a bit low, was printing dead center of POA. Before I started adjusting elevation, I fired a magazine full of 10 rounds and was amazed that the group could be covered with a 50 cent piece at 50 yards! If someone else told me they had done what I did and did not ruin the "resonance" of the barrel, I would have been sceptical. I guess it really isn't as complicated as some would have us believe. I read a post here a day or two ago about someone having cylinder throats reamed, and the 'smith told him that if he was intent on shooting cast bullets in a .357, he'd just have to be prepared to deal with the leading. Thankfully there is an abundance of knowledgeable folks here that haven't drank the koolaid!

  13. #13
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    You've never seen how barrels are straightned before installation?
    Those who fail to study history are doomed to repeat it.

    “A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity”. Sigmund
    Freud

  14. #14
    Boolit Bub
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    No, I never really gave it alot of consideration. Guess I always figured that if ya start with a straight blank and center bore and rifle it, you'd have a straight barrel ready for installation. I'm not a machinist or tool and die maker, so maybe I don't have a realistic understanding of the process necessary to produce "precision" barrels, and I think the industry tries to sell us the notion of high tech, precision engineered, high speed, low drag manufacturing standards. (Not that any of that was going on in Brazil in the 80's) Ya hear stuff about attenuation and vibration frequency, and molecular structure of the steel in rifle barrels, but there really is not that much mystery in it is there? So, oneokie, you're telling me that major manufacturers straighten barrels on a workbench with a pipe clamp and two lead pillars? I guess I can quit calling my work area the "shop" and start calling it the "technology center". Any sign makers on this forum? I joke about all this, but I really am amazed that it turned out as well as it did. This has really been an educational experience, and I appreciate the advice and support found here.

  15. #15
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    Gee, I have a warm fuzzy feeling.

    In this area, are quite a few rifle barrel makers. Probably more per capita, than anywhere else in the US. Orion, Montana, Lilja, Sonju, and Dale Jones come to mind immediately, Bauska was here before Les retired, most within twenty miles of me. I've been in all the shops.
    Standard procedure for most, is to first bore the barrel, then examine for straightness.
    In each rifle shop, is a large press, usually an old time screw type operation, so the pressure can be controlled by hand. Looks like a big book press. The barrels are then straightened before rifling. Many others will stop at this point, the smart ones will look through the bore one more time, to see if the button or cutters relieved any stresses, requiring re-straightening. There are a lot of smart ones around here.
    Profiling the barrel after it is bored and rifled, makes it simple for the machinist to line up the contour.
    A bad barrel is extremely rare nowadays, regardless of manufacturer
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  16. #16
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    Old saying:

    If you can't dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with BS.
    Those who fail to study history are doomed to repeat it.

    “A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity”. Sigmund
    Freud

  17. #17
    Boolit Master
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    Yestiday, I kiddnt even spel "gunsmitt" - tiday, I are one. .

    .

  18. #18
    Boolit Bub
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    Wow Waksupi, how fortunate can one be? Living in a great place like Montana wasn't enough, you had to center yourself to within 20 miles of great barrel makers and evidently work in the industry as well? Interesting information on the barrel making process. I guess I wasn't far off with my technique after all. I knew better than to use my shop press, afraid I'd over do it too easily, thats why I went the pipe clamp route. I can see the benefit in a screw type press. Since there really isn't that much technology involved, maybe my rifle was just a 4:30 Friday assembly that got through. It really wasn't that noticeable until I increased the sight radius, and took out the windage adjustment of the rear sight.
    Don't know that I consider myself a gunsmitt just yet, but I is more better edgeykated! Agin, I'm much obliged!

  19. #19
    Boolit Master
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    Looked in some of my Parker-Hale catalogues and there in #70 is this small photo:-



    Of barrel straightening. Sorry about the poor quality. I just photographed the part of the page but you get the idea.

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check