Molded rail sections. From L: Scout light adapter, long and short Picatinny rails.
I have been using the CMR rail from Centurion Arms for a while on my latest rifle build. It is an exquisitely well executed tubular forend with a 12:00 rail and threaded helicoils for the attachment of modular rail sections. My buddy Monty from Centurion had supplied me with a set of the preproduction rail sections a few months ago, and I finally got around to getting them onto the gun. The rail sections are molded, and screw right onto the tube via the threaded helicoils. As pictured above, there is a Scout mount adapter as well as a long and short Picatinny rail. Other adapters, including an X300 mount, are in the works. Production units of the pictured rail sections should be hitting fairly soon at your favorite Centurion dealer. Continue reading
10-8 rear sights on Glock, 1911, M&P. Photo by Triple Bravo.
In yesterday’s post, I discussed the attributes of different front sight types. Today we will take a look at the different considerations for rear sights and how to put it all together. Continue reading
Shield with brass bead front sight, M&P with fiber optic.
Photo by Triple Bravo.
As a manufacturer of sighting systems, we get a lot of emails about choosing sights. In this installment, I will address choosing front sights, and we’ll talk about rear sights in the next one.
The first part of the process is to determine your needs in terms of your use and vision requirements. Are you using the pistol for competition, recreation, CCW, LE duty use? Each usage profile has a different set of needs which should be examined. Continue reading
MSW readers may recall the trigger work that I’d done on my Gen4 Glock 19 a few weeks back. While in dry fire testing I wasn’t super excited about the improvements to the stock trigger, the results on the range told a different story. Bringing the pull weight down to 5 lbs 12 oz from the original 7 lbs made this little gun an absolute laser. Continue reading
Springfield 1911/Colt M45 Dual Recoil Spring Assembly
A short time ago Hilton contacted me about evaluating the Colt M45 1911 Dual Recoil Spring Assembly. As you may know from earlier articles, Colt developed the Dual Recoil Spring assembly for use in the M45 at the request of the Marine Corps. The system is designed to prolong spring life between changes and increase the round count between them.
After over a year of development and relentless testing of countless prototypes, I am pleased to announce the 10-8 magazine well for the M&P 9/40 full sized frame pistols. Continue reading
It comes up all the time on interweb discussions about so and so’s tricked out gun puking at the training class, and therefore match barrels have no place on a service weapon. Too many times, the judgement is arrived upon too hastily, and there are other factors afoot. Continue reading
I have spent some bit of time researching and tuning the S&W M&P, as those pistols have become my passion of late. The latest model which intrigued me was the super sexy VTAC model. It’s tan. Come on, what more reason do we need?! Ok, other than being a slave to fashion, I wanted to spend a little time looking at the vapor deposition finish on the slide and the merits of the 6 dot sighting system. Continue reading
Every now and then it comes up that someone asks about replacement 1911 front sights in tritium or other options. There are relatively few aftermarket options for stake on front sights, as it is an absolutely archaic attachment method which should be abandoned by anyone willing to spend money to upgrade their 1911. Continue reading
Thanks to dimensional variations that are inherent to the manufacturing process, it is possible to end up with an aftermarket dovetail sight (front or rear) which is loose in the dovetail. Depending only on some Loctite or the set screw is not sufficient to remedy this situation, so what are your choices?
First, let’s consider the quandary of the sight manufacturers. For full disclosure, I AM a sight manufacturer, so I have a bit of a unique insight into this problem. Most customers expect sights to just be plug and play, to drop in to a perfect fit in their slide. In a perfect world, this is 100% achievable and reasonable to expect. Unfortunately, manufacturing tolerances and ever changing blueprints or tooling preclude slide dovetails from being identical. Having done this for a bit, you will find that most quality sight manufacturers are able to hold tolerances on their sights such that they are essentially identical. It is a bit easier to cut the smaller sights all the same than it is to cut a bigger dovetail in a piece of steel that is harder than the steel used to make the sights. This problem is exacerbated in the 1911, where many manufacturers interpret the dimensions differently even for common dovetails such as the Novak LoMount (r) rear and the Novak 1911 Front. For this reason, many manufacturers make the sights a bit oversized to allow filing for a perfect fit.
If your new sight is a bit loose due to being undersized relative to a larger dovetail, the easiest solution is the time honored gunsmithing method of peening to create an interference fit. Using a flat nosed stake punch (I make my own from commonly available punches by grinding down the tips) and a large hammer (I use an 8 oz hammer), strike the underside of the dovetail to create a deformation. This peening, done with sufficient material displaced, will create a permanent interference fit.
Other options also include welding up the sight dovetail base or welding and recutting the slide, both of which are well out of the reach of the typical end user. Manufacturers also tend not to have “oversized” sights on hand for such situations, as sights are made in large batches to what is determined to be the most common optimum dimensions.
If you install enough sights, you will eventually end up with a loose one. This peening method is also a handy way to rescue a worn sight which has gotten loose, or one which was filed too much and would otherwise be useless.
Lately I have been playing a lot with a .115″ wide front sight in conjunction with a .140″ rear notch. The .125″ width is the most common and leads in popularity, as it is a good all purpose width, most typically paired with a .140″ notch width. Prior to the .115″, I had used the .100″ a lot with good results. A narrower front sight covers less of the target (especially at 15 yards and out), while a wider one fills the notch more for greater potential precision. I really did not get much of a performance deficit with the .100″, but the .115″ does allow some greater accuracy potential without any loss of speed. When I recently trained with him, I was pleasantly surprised to hear that Frank Proctor also liked the .115″ wide front. Check it out, you may soon join me in declaring “.115″ is the new .125″!”
10-8 modified TRP Operator. Photo by Triple Bravo.
A recent inquiry from a customer prompted today’s post, which concerns the internet fable of how the Smith & Alexander magazine well is not “tactical” because when you drop or impact the gun you can pinch the horseshoe section of the well together and thereby pinch the magazine in place inside the gun. Continue reading
In my previous installment on Glock trigger work, I took a look at the issues surrounding working on Glock triggers. As I noted, the average trigger pull of the stock Glock was around 7.0 pounds. I wanted to start my experiments with factory parts, as they are known to be the most reliable and predictable. Continue reading
In my last post, I looked at the actual trigger pull weight of a small sample of Glocks. I have tinkered a bit with Glock triggers before, but wanted to work a little harder at it this time. While I know full well that putting in lightened strikers and springs will drop the pull weight, I am after a service pistol trigger, not a competition trigger. I have seen plenty of reduced spring weight triggers fail quite miserably at matches and classes. I will not waste my time or yours with such folly. Continue reading
My GAP built Surgeon actioned 6 Creedmore with Vortex Razor 5-20 scope
The amazing thing about the firearms industry currently is the vast array of options a person has to modify his/her weapon to their tastes or preferences. This variety is not limited to the adult Lego® of the firearms world, the AR15. There is now also a great market of accessories and options for precision bolt action rifles that’s growing rapidly. The biggest mistake I see many new shooters make with their first bolt action rifle purchase is making the assumption that all rifle stocks or chassis will fit everyone. This is sadly not the case. Each individual shooter’s length of pull, cheek structure, hand size, forearm length, and a number of other factors play into each shooter’s fit to a stock. There is always someone more than willing to tell any new shooter that the stock or chassis that they have is the only way to go. More often than not I watch online as shooters go from a stock to a chassis and back, continuously buying and selling stocks until they finally settle on one that is comfortable for them and fits their shooting style. Continue reading