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Thread: New vaquero shoots to the left

  1. #1
    Boolit Master Tripplebeards's Avatar
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    New vaquero shoots to the left

    I took it out yesterday and set up a water bottle at about 20/25 yards away. I shot the first four rounds and I hit about 3” to the left in a group the size of a silver dollar. I readjusted my aim point to about 2/3” to the right of the bottle and hit it 14 tines in a row. I did some research and it sounds like the barrel can be turned or rear sight opened on the right side to fix the aim point? I called ruger and since it was manufactured four years ago they said if I pay them for $30 shipping charge I can send it back for them to mess with it.


    Any ideas on how to fix the aim myself or am I better off to send it in? I figured I’m going to go out and try it again before I do anything with it I’m going to double check the sights over and take a buddy with to let him shoot it as well to see if it’s the pistol or me shooting it.

  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Better to send it in that's cheap. I had a Vaquero that shot 8" - 10" left at 25yds, sent it in and by the time they clocked the front sight enough to get it to shoot to the sights, LOL the barrel was choked down to .448" or something like that. It was severely choked and required Taylor throat reaming to fix it. Too much to firelap, too tight to shoot it as it was.
    Got a .22 .30 .32 .357 .38 .40 .41 .44 .45 .480 or .500 S&W cylinder that needs throat reaming? 9mm, 10mm/40S&W, 45 ACP pistol barrel that won't "plunk" your handloads? Shoot me a PM! Also on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Cylinderhone-756429174391912/

  3. #3
    Boolit Master

    stubshaft's Avatar
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    I'd do it myself! If you have Ruger do it and upon return the gun shoots to the right watcha gonna do? I had an elevation issue with a Lipsey Bisley and returned it to Ruger. I sent it back to them and got it back three months later with a note saying that it was within their parameters...
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  4. #4
    Boolit Master

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    I had, and still have to some extent, the same problem with a brand new Ruger New Model Vaquero I purchased around 2010. It shot a good foot to the left at 15 yards. I contacted Ruger via e-mail and told them about the problem and the handload I was using. They came back with we only use Winchester factory ammo to test new Vaqueros -- try some and see how it shoots. I just happened to have about half a box of Win. .45 Colt purchased in about 1959, so I tried it out, and it was better but not as good as I'd like. I considered the possible fixes you have mentioned, but to just turn the barrel a bit leaves the sight off of top dead center, which is something I've always noticed on firearms that had off center sights, and just bending the front blade over a bit is annoying also.As for filing a bit off the appropriate side of the rear sight, that might be a good solution except that it's so permanent. and then restricts you to the load that it works with. I think the best solution is to start over with a new barrel, and maybe I'll get around to doing that on my NM Vaquero someday, but meanwhile acquired some Uberti 1873s that I like much better.
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    As good as it ever got. 15 yds.

  5. #5
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    I've seen many an old revolver with a bent front sight. A friend shot CAS for years with a Uberti 1875 Remington. 45LC with a bent sight. I shot it a few times and it was dead on.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk

  6. #6
    Boolit Grand Master

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    Tripplebeards, let me ask you a question. Can you stand in the Weaver stance, 2 hand hold, and dry fire your gun (unloaded of course) and hold the sights motionless? If you can hold them absolutely still through 10-12 shots, I would say the problem MAY be in the gun. If the sights move any at all, then the problem may not be with the gun at all but the shooter.

    Many times I have had to pull off one leg of the trigger return spring and let it hang to lessen trigger pressure enough that I could hold the sights still. Beyond that I often recommend swapping in a Wolff 30oz. trigger return spring, this makes it a WHOLE LOT easier to hold those sights perfectly still in dry fire. If you can do this in dry fire, remember your grip, and how you pulled your trigger finger, you should be able to duplicate the same firing action in live fire.

    It's a kneejerk reaction for a right handed shooter to pull to the left after the shot breaks, I actually pull my trigger with my finger pulling in the direction of my right shoulder, not straight back. This just works great for me.

    Oh yeah... DO NOT try and bend your front sight blade, as the blade itself is stronger than the silver solder holding it on the barrel and in an instant you can break that puppy off.
    Got a .22 .30 .32 .357 .38 .40 .41 .44 .45 .480 or .500 S&W cylinder that needs throat reaming? 9mm, 10mm/40S&W, 45 ACP pistol barrel that won't "plunk" your handloads? Shoot me a PM! Also on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Cylinderhone-756429174391912/

  7. #7
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    Mine is off about 2" to the left too, Humm starting see a pattern develop here.
    Last edited by SSGOldfart; 05-16-2019 at 02:27 PM. Reason: Small keyboard and large fingers
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  8. #8
    Boolit Master TNsailorman's Avatar
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    I have always had a little trouble shooting single action revolvers(which I don't shoot much). I consistently shoot just a tad left and a tad low. I have always used a dead center hold on my double action revolvers. I have learned to hold about 1 o'clock for the single action that I have right now(Ruger Vaquero .45Colt). The Ruger is a replacement for an older Vaquero that had problems and Ruger sent me this one. The factory target they sent with it shows 5 out of 6 shots shooting about 1 inch left but level. Works for me.

  9. #9
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    I've found that windage with fixed sight revolvers can depend on how much trigger finger you're using. Too much and it pulls to the right, too little and and it pulls to the left.

    My Old VAQUERO'S, a pair of 7 1/2" .45Colt's are dead on at 25yds with Factory Win/REM 250/255's.

    My New Vaquero 5 1/2" .45Colt shoots 2 inches left.
    To correct this I put my entire trigger finger, past the 1st joint onto the trigger. This pulls the POI to the right.

    Same thing apply's to Colt's but even more so. And I do have a couple of clones who's front sights lean a bit to the side. Usually the right.

    Sometimes changing the load will change POI. A light/heavier bullet or a faster/slower moving bullet.
    Either can change point of impact.
    Experiment a bit.
    I HATE auto-correct


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  10. #10
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by Texas by God View Post
    I've seen many an old revolver with a bent front sight. A friend shot CAS for years with a Uberti 1875 Remington. 45LC with a bent sight. I shot it a few times and it was dead on.

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930A using Tapatalk
    Yup..but it ain't right, and it's irritating.

  11. #11
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by Walks View Post
    My Old VAQUERO'S, a pair of 7 1/2" .45Colt's are dead on at 25yds with Factory Win/REM 250/255's.
    Yup...mine also. A .44-40 and a .44 Mag. Seems like something changed between old and new.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by TNsailorman View Post
    I have learned to hold about 1 o'clock for the single action that I have right now(Ruger Vaquero .45Colt).
    That would exactly solve the problem with mine, but dead on is better.

  13. #13
    Boolit Master

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    Quote Originally Posted by SSGOldfart View Post
    Mine is off about 2" to the left too, Humm starting see a pattern develop here.
    Sure seems so. Haven't read yet where "Mine shoots to the right!"

  14. #14
    Boolit Master
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    I sort of hate to mention this bc many a gun has been ruined by Bubba The Wannabe Gunsmith, but if the problem really is the gun and not the shooter, the barrel can be bent. Of course once you put a revolver in a press, one outcome is you get it to shoot where you want. Let me stress that’s just ONE of the many possible outcomes.

    This is one of those things where if you haven’t done it, you shouldn’t.
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  15. #15
    Boolit Grand Master

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    (Doug envisions the evil little stick-on guy on the back window who's always peeing on a certain brand of truck's emblem bent over the press, with a laser bore sighter crammed into the barrel shining it's red dot on an old beer sign on the far wall of the shop, grinning and pulling the lever on the press)
    Got a .22 .30 .32 .357 .38 .40 .41 .44 .45 .480 or .500 S&W cylinder that needs throat reaming? 9mm, 10mm/40S&W, 45 ACP pistol barrel that won't "plunk" your handloads? Shoot me a PM! Also on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Cylinderhone-756429174391912/

  16. #16
    Boolit Master


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    To slightly change the thread.

    Many years ago I used to shoot at the LAPD Harbor Range. It was a semi-enclosed range. The firing points were enclosed in a concrete block room, covered. The Range was enclosed by 10foot concrete block walls open to the sky. It faced straight SOUTH.

    In the Morning, 0800hrs the Sun slanted across the range East to West.
    In the afternoon, 1600hrs the Sun slanted across the range West to East.

    It would play Havoc with windage.

    POI would shift from Morning to Evening. The angle of the Sun on the targets.

    So I would shoot and make sight adjustments at NOON.

    Then take what I got at other times. You could even get a different POI shooting at night.

    Not that any of this helps the question.

    Just interesting but obscure info.
    I HATE auto-correct


    Happiness is a Warm GUN & more ammo to shoot in it.

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  17. #17
    Boolit Master Tripplebeards's Avatar
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    Didnt realize I had mixed head stamps but I’m sure that’s not going to cause the shift only group sizes.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master





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    Quote Originally Posted by Tripplebeards View Post
    Didnt realize I had mixed head stamps but I’m sure that’s not going to cause the shift only group sizes.
    Might cause a few flyers which will open up your groups.
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  19. #19
    Boolit Grand Master Texas by God's Avatar
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    Walks, that is why I smoke my handgun sights with a candle or match before I test for POI. I’ve seen what you state many, many times.

  20. #20
    Boolit Buddy
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    Why not try the pistol correction chart first.

    The chart shows the shooter how to correct the hold on the gun and
    move the group to center.

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