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Thread: revolvers without adjustable sights

  1. #41
    Boolit Master 35 Whelen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kerplode View Post
    I can count on zero fingers the number of times in the last 30 years I've actually adjusted sights on a handgun. So, at this point, it's mostly a don't care with a slight preference for fixed sights. Less to go wrong.
    This has been my question to those who insist on adjustable sights; do you really twiddle with the rear sight every time you change loads?

    I've learned with my S&W Model 10-X's, which shoot POA with ~158 gr. bullets =<900 fps, that when heavier bullets/loads are used, hold just a little lower to allow for a slightly higher POI. No big deal, really.

    35W
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  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by 35 Whelen View Post
    This has been my question to those who insist on adjustable sights; do you really twiddle with the rear sight every time you change loads?

    I've learned with my S&W Model 10-X's, which shoot POA with ~158 gr. bullets =<900 fps, that when heavier bullets/loads are used, hold just a little lower to allow for a slightly higher POI. No big deal, really.

    35W
    Yes, every time. I would never consider using a handgun (or a rifle, or shotgun) for hunting that isn't sighted in for the load. I would never consider hunting with a handgun that couldn't be sighted in, that is unless I happen to find one that shoots to POA with an accurate load. All these years, haven't found one yet.

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by 35 Whelen View Post
    This has been my question to those who insist on adjustable sights; do you really twiddle with the rear sight every time you change loads?

    I've learned with my S&W Model 10-X's, which shoot POA with ~158 gr. bullets =<900 fps, that when heavier bullets/loads are used, hold just a little lower to allow for a slightly higher POI. No big deal, really.

    35W
    But...But...But... Off a sandbag rest... I expect 1/4 inch Groups!!!!
    Nope...Me Neither... I'm in it for the Fun... A "near miss" will Not ruin my day.. Turns out, I have another Shot!!!!
    If you cannot deal with adversity... You Loose!!!

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by racepres View Post
    But...But...But... Off a sandbag rest... I expect 1/4 inch Groups!!!!
    Nope...Me Neither... I'm in it for the Fun... A "near miss" will Not ruin my day.. Turns out, I have another Shot!!!!
    If you cannot deal with adversity... You Loose!!!
    That's the difference. There are a lot of people who's more than a day could be ruined. I don't expect perfection, I don't need perfection. I do expect to be proficient with my carry guns to 50 yards, and most fixed sight snubbies wont do it. Put real sights on those same guns, and they do well. I'm not going to carry a handgun that shoots 4" left at 25 yards. I'm not going to hunt with any gun that is 2" off at 50 yards. I'm not going to compete with anything I have to Kentucky windage.

    Go shoot, have fun, use whatever makes you happy. Just don't sit there and tell me fixed sights are in any way an advantage. This thread was started asking why fixed sight guns do not shoot as good of groups, or to POI. I explained why. Denying it won't change anything.

  5. #45
    I shoot 3.8 grains of be with a swaged 158. Point of aim is point of impact from my S&W 10-6.

  6. #46
    Boolit Master 35 Whelen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by megasupermagnum View Post
    Yes, every time. I would never consider using a handgun (or a rifle, or shotgun) for hunting that isn't sighted in for the load. I would never consider hunting with a handgun that couldn't be sighted in, that is unless I happen to find one that shoots to POA with an accurate load. All these years, haven't found one yet.
    Yeah I don't know anyone who hunts with a firearm that hasn't been sighted in.

    My MO for .38/.357's, .44 Special and 45 Colts has been to load/use a "standard" weight for caliber RN style bullet running 750-800 fps that shoots to the sights at 25 yds. for practice, plinking and small game which is about as far as one would expect to shoot something small. (And FWIW for me it's been pretty rare that a fixed sight revolver hasn't put these standard weight bullets where they're supposed to at 25 yds.) Then a similar or slightly heavier SWC bullet running 200-250 fps faster for hunting deer, hogs and similar size game. From a mathematical standpoint unless one is hunting sandfleas or chiggers there's not enough difference in trajectory of the two different loads to amount to a hill of beans out to 50 yds. with most of the difference being due to added recoil and muzzle rise from the heavier load. I've found my heavier hunting loads typically impact roughly 2" higher than the standard load at 25 yds., a couple of inches high at 50 yds., and pretty much dead on at 75 yds. This is why even with my revolvers with adjustable sights, I never have to mess with the sights.

    Quote Originally Posted by megasupermagnum View Post
    That's the difference. There are a lot of people who's more than a day could be ruined. I don't expect perfection, I don't need perfection. I do expect to be proficient with my carry guns to 50 yards, and most fixed sight snubbies wont do it. Put real sights on those same guns, and they do well. I'm not going to carry a handgun that shoots 4" left at 25 yards. I'm not going to hunt with any gun that is 2" off at 50 yards. I'm not going to compete with anything I have to Kentucky windage.

    Go shoot, have fun, use whatever makes you happy. Just don't sit there and tell me fixed sights are in any way an advantage. This thread was started asking why fixed sight guns do not shoot as good of groups, or to POI. I explained why. Denying it won't change anything.
    Agree or not, fixed sights do have some advantages. Probably first and foremost, and as already mentioned, they are more rugged than typical adjustable sights. That's why businesses such as Bowen Classic Arms produce heavy duty replacement sights intended to replace factory sights. Second, probably in an unintended way, they teach shooters to learn to shoot their handguns correctly. Can you imagine the chaos on a firing line full of recruits ot law enforcement officers if they were all trying to "sight in" their service handguns if they had adjustable sights?

    Again, nothing against adjustable sights, but they don't make a handgun more accurate, and with a few exceptions, handguns shoot straight, people don't.

    35W
    Last edited by 35 Whelen; 01-28-2023 at 12:31 PM.
    The biggest waste of time is arguing with the fool and fanatic who doesn't care about truth or reality, but only the victory of his beliefs and illusions.
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  7. #47
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    Type of sights don't make a gun accurate or not. They do make the shooter more accurate. It is easier to shoot better with good sights, fixed or adjustable. And, I do insist on adjustable sights if I am going to be shooting small targets at range. For close range adjustable is not a big issue, just use a load that hits near your aimpoint.

    And, yes, I do use the adjustable sights on my pistols that have them. Some I use every time I go to the range, mostly adjusting for distance. And on some of my fixed sight guns the sights are permanently 'adjusted' to my load of choice.

  8. #48
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    I have a couple fixed sight revolvers but most have adjustables.

    I do have to sat I prefer the adjustables for sight picture and that they sit a little taller on the frame.

    I don’t do bad with my 31-1 .32 S&W long, it is blued. I just picked up a 64-3 and the stainless fixed sight frame and bare serrated stainless front ramp does not really work easily with my over 50 eyeballs. I am going to black magic marker the front and rear on the 64-3 to try.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lance Boyle View Post
    I have a couple fixed sight revolvers but most have adjustables.

    I do have to sat I prefer the adjustables for sight picture and that they sit a little taller on the frame.

    I don’t do bad with my 31-1 .32 S&W long, it is blued. I just picked up a 64-3 and the stainless fixed sight frame and bare serrated stainless front ramp does not really work easily with my over 50 eyeballs. I am going to black magic marker the front and rear on the 64-3 to try.
    I am currently having best luck with a bit Older Eyes, by using some wild pink/orange dayglo nail polish, borrowed from my Bitter Half..
    Oddly, I cannot discern the Color when sighting... but my eye pickes it up readily!!
    Odd Whot??

  10. #50
    Boolit Master MarkP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lance Boyle View Post
    I have a couple fixed sight revolvers but most have adjustables.

    I do have to sat I prefer the adjustables for sight picture and that they sit a little taller on the frame.

    I don’t do bad with my 31-1 .32 S&W long, it is blued. I just picked up a 64-3 and the stainless fixed sight frame and bare serrated stainless front ramp does not really work easily with my over 50 eyeballs. I am going to black magic marker the front and rear on the 64-3 to try.
    I bought some S&W 64's that were turn in's from Austrian forestry that were re-imported to the US. Carried alot not shot very often. After filing the blemishes out of the SS and getting consistent brush marks / lines. I masked off the brushed steel and left the top exposed on frame and bbl and blasted with fine sand. Left a nice dark Grey finish. Pretty easy to do and looks good. Mine had no collector value with proof marks stamped in the trigger guard frame. These shoot pretty close to POA with a LEE 105 over 4.6 gr Bullseye. Also have a 2" 64 it shoots about 4" Left at 50'. The NOE 180 gr WFN over Alliant Power Pistol shoots high in my 64's. That is the load I carry when working outside for wild dogs or ?? I got cornered several yrs ago be two wild dogs when I was planting trees. I just had a spade the rear dog retreated then the head dog decided to back down. The next day I had my Redhawk but no dogs. The 64 is a perfect work side arm. Sorry for the off topic rant.

  11. #51
    Boolit Master 35 Whelen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lance Boyle View Post
    I have a couple fixed sight revolvers but most have adjustables.

    I do have to sat I prefer the adjustables for sight picture and that they sit a little taller on the frame. As I mentioned previously I use a Swiss file to groove the rear smooth front sights, which makes a huge difference. What I failed to mention is I afterwards apply cold blue without all the

    I don’t do bad with my 31-1 .32 S&W long, it is blued. I just picked up a 64-3 and the stainless fixed sight frame and bare serrated stainless front ramp does not really work easily with my over 50 eyeballs. I am going to black magic marker the front and rear on the 64-3 to try.
    No kidding re- the stainless frame or for that matter a shiny blue frame. One solution I've applied is to dab a little flat black model airplane paint around the rear notch. Also, I'd mentioned earlier that I groove the rear of smooth front sights with a Swiss file, what I forgot to mention was I then apply cold blue without all of the polishing steps. Doings so darken the groove and helps the front sights tand out.


    Quote Originally Posted by racepres View Post
    I am currently having best luck with a bit Older Eyes, by using some wild pink/orange dayglo nail polish, borrowed from my Bitter Half..
    Oddly, I cannot discern the Color when sighting... but my eye pickes it up readily!!
    Odd Whot??
    I think if I only shot dark target such as at the range, I'd use your solution of bright colors on the front sight. The problem I've found with bright colors and shiny front sights is they tend to wash out in bright sunlight. The down side to dark front sights is they sometimes blend in with dark targets and in low light they're quite difficult to pick up.

    35W
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    There are people who, for all the evidence presented to them, do not have the ability to understand.

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  12. #52
    Boolit Master Rapier's Avatar
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    Shoot you defense load in the black dark, make sue it will not flash blind you and smoke obscure the attacker.
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  13. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by 35 Whelen View Post
    No kidding re- the stainless frame or for that matter a shiny blue frame. One solution I've applied is to dab a little flat black model airplane paint around the rear notch. Also, I'd mentioned earlier that I groove the rear of smooth front sights with a Swiss file, what I forgot to mention was I then apply cold blue without all of the polishing steps. Doings so darken the groove and helps the front sights tand out.




    I think if I only shot dark target such as at the range, I'd use your solution of bright colors on the front sight. The problem I've found with bright colors and shiny front sights is they tend to wash out in bright sunlight. The down side to dark front sights is they sometimes blend in with dark targets and in low light they're quite difficult to pick up.

    35W
    Will try the darker lighting conditions...soon..: Note: I only put dayglow color on front ramp...Black out at rear...

  14. #54
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    I am another that likes orange sights. The only better alternative I have seen is tritium night sights with the white outlines. Good in dark, good in light. If you can adapt to them, red dots work really well a lot of the time, and green lasers are pretty good as well.

  15. #55
    Boolit Grand Master FergusonTO35's Avatar
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    I have three standard .38 loads: 3.1 grains BE/148 grain Lyman wadcutter, 3 grains Accurate Nitro 100/150 grain Lee SWC, and 3.4 grains BE/Lee 158 grain FP. My S&W 10-5 and 637, Ruger Service Six, and Charter Undercover all shoot the first two dead on. The third is my "outdoorsman" load, the boolits weigh 164 grains with my mold. It shoots about an inch high at 15 yards with my full size revolvers and is my woods carry load. The Charter Undercover is a late model and the front sight is high from the factory, which allows you to file it down to your particular load. Gave all of them some exercise yesterday and they did great!
    Currently casting and loading: .32 Auto, .380 Auto, .38 Special, 9X19, .357 Magnum, .257 Roberts, 6.5 Creedmoor, .30 WCF, .308 WCF.

  16. #56
    Boolit Master Rodfac's Avatar
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    35 W.: Again, nothing against adjustable sights, but they don't make a handgun more accurate, and with a few exceptions, handguns shoot straight, people don't.
    Well, I don't know about that...I find adj. sights a lot easier to see than the groove/hog wallow and front sight blade of typical fixed sighted revolvers. Attempting to adjust windage on a fixed sighted model is typically a lesson in frustration, IMHO. I've been successful only once when I was able to widen the rear sight notch ten thousandths and that did the job...it also allowed my 76 yo eyes to better see the front sight blade. For the rest, speaking of revolvers only here, it's been, KY windage to one extent or another.

    As for elevation, it's much easier, at least if the gun is shooting low. As you can judiciously use a fine cut mill file to shorten the front sight...your groups are too high, well, your SOL. Adj. sights fix all that with a turn or two from a fitted screw driver.

    Too, I find the adj. sights on Smiths, Colts, and Rugers of the past half century manuf., to be fairly robust. Personally, I've been thrown from a horse, tumbled down a Colorado mountain scree slope and even dropped a cpl with no adverse affect on the sights. But trying to bend a Ruger Single Six front blade on a Birdshead Baby Vaquero resulted in a frustrating but ultimately successful, attempt to braze it back on. As always, YMMv, Rod
    Last edited by Rodfac; 01-31-2023 at 10:45 PM.
    Rod

  17. #57
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    While you could make a fixed sight accurate, that's not really what we are comparing here. We are talking about small revolvers, which "fixed" almost always means their "rear sight" is just a groove in the frame.

    I'm not sure what else to say. A sight like that is not going to be as accurate as a proper rear sight. The handgun would shoot just as good as anything else in a ransom rest. From a shooter he wont be. The human eye is simply not capable of dealing with such a tiny window, odd rounded angles, and a shiny background (both stainless or blued). I'm sure some people are better than others, but the fact remains, that a proper rear sight, which is almost always adjustable, with a matte surface is easier to see. There is no mystery what is going on here. You can blame the shooter all you want, but that is why the OP is not seeing as good of groups with the fixed sight revolvers.

    I have not seen a police officer with a fixed sight revolver ever. I've never seen one practicing with a fixed sight revolver. They almost universally use semi-autos now, and I can't think of any semi-auto that would be used that has fixed sights. I would have to assume most police use a glock 19 or 22, both of which come with decent adjustable sights.

    Even if I ever broke my rear sight, which I've not in all these years of carrying handguns, I really doubt I would be worse off than having had fixed sights in the first place.

  18. #58
    Boolit Grand Master FergusonTO35's Avatar
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    I strongly prefer adjustable or at least replaceable sights. That said, all my .38's have fixed sights and I shoot them as well as my other handguns - which is nothing to boast about. One thing nice about adjustable sights is you can adjust them to compensate for your own nuances and imperfections. I tend to shoot bottom feeders slightly left, and have come to just accept this fact. By drifting the sight a bit to the right I can compensate for that tendency.
    Currently casting and loading: .32 Auto, .380 Auto, .38 Special, 9X19, .357 Magnum, .257 Roberts, 6.5 Creedmoor, .30 WCF, .308 WCF.

  19. #59
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    The fact that law enforcement now carries fixed sight pistols is irrelevant. I haven't seen an officer respond to a call on horseback in all my years, save on TV. That doesn't mean no one ever did. Those of us old enough to remember the 60's & 70's know that hundreds of thousands of Law enforcement officers carried fixed sight revolvers. Larger departments would have an armorer to "adjust" the sights through the judicious use of a lead bar so that they would shoot to point of aim at 25 yards with the standard department approved ammunition. Provided the barrel wasn't bent banging some unruly suspect over the head, that gun stayed sighted in with that ammo for the rest of the Officer's career.

    I have personally repaired two rear sight blades on service revolvers, one Ruger Security Six and one Model 15. LAPD did about a dozen a year for a while, or so I was told, though that number decreased when security holsters from Safariland and Bianchi replaced the older Audley-type push button clamshell rigs. The Ruger was easy, the S&W is a pain in the but involving drilling out the crimp on the left side, installing the new blade and windage screw, staking the windage screw. Fixed sights are more durable.

    Now I can not dispute the better sight picture given by most adjustable sights, nor can I defend the fixed sight when it comes to ease of adjustment. All my regular range toys have adjustable sights, as do my hunting revolvers. Most of my carry guns do not.
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  20. #60
    Boolit Grand Master FergusonTO35's Avatar
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    When I was a kid all the coppers carried big S&W .357's with coke bottle grips and adjustable sights, even though issue ammo was .38 Special usually. I think that was more of a Dirty Harry effect than anything else, the sight of a big intimidating magnum is more likely to make a perp cooperate than a little Police Positive Special or pencil barrel model 10.
    Currently casting and loading: .32 Auto, .380 Auto, .38 Special, 9X19, .357 Magnum, .257 Roberts, 6.5 Creedmoor, .30 WCF, .308 WCF.

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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
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GC Gas Check