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| | |-+  silver front sights/rounded front barleycorn or flat face front barleycorn
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Author Topic: silver front sights/rounded front barleycorn or flat face front barleycorn  (Read 3501 times)
sonny
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« on: November 16, 2009, 12:44:47 PM »

went to the range with a new silver front sight.I soldered two silver quarter halfs together an made a halfmoon barley corn front sight.I then rounded the angled front of sight an tappered it to a point at top.When i looked at the target with the sight i expected to see it light up but it appeared black an not silver.I thought maybe i needed more sun so with the sun at my back it still looked dark.I shot anyway an did poorly as black front sight an dark target makes it rough!But,as i shot an the sun started to go down the sight started to become more visible.With primitive tear drop front sight,is it better to have a flat face  on the barleycorn sight, or rounded face for a better picture.I thought original sights was low an rounded teardrop....what should i do,i can't get the front sight more distinct for shooting!........help i don't want to start over making sights....sonny
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Daryl
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« Reply #1 on: November 16, 2009, 12:58:26 PM »

Rounded (convex) rear faces reflect light coming in from any direction and give highlights that produce different points of impact, depending on the light source.  In the bush for close shots, this isn't critical, but can make you miss the bull or even a fairly large gong target at 50yards when human error is coupled with an off point of impact.

 I prefer bear sights to have a flat, almost 45 degree angle, same angle with the top 1/16" of a blade sight front sight. That way, when it picks up light, the appearance is a perfectly round bead or a shiny flat surface, not highlighted on one side or the other to cause 'off' shots.
Note the angle on the rear facing bead.


Note how well the 'bead, with the angled bead sows up in the light as well as in the dark.  If the rear face is not angled, it takes a lot of light to light it up adn will appear dark or black in normal light, just what you don't want, unless the target is light in colour. In that case, a brush with a felt pen makes it dark, but is easily wiped off when you want some shine.

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sonny
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« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2009, 07:39:41 PM »

hummm thanks..........so flat face with angle is better then standing straight up with flat face..................sonny
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Daryl
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« Reply #3 on: November 17, 2009, 11:40:02 AM »

With standing straight up with a flat face, only light coming in from behind will show it. That is why all 'target' pistol sights are either straight up or angled back slightly, so the front sight (the important sight) is flat black on a white target face. Note all aperture sights - hooded globes to eliminate any light from shining on the front sight be it a blade, cross hairs or aperture - always flat black on a white target with black centre.

Trouble is, we don't always shoot at white targets and sometimes we need to 'see' the front sight superposed on that target. Shooting a black sight at a black target is very difficult, but if it picks up some light, placing that white or yellow dot or circle on the black target is easy.  Only a flat, angled surface gives true or almost true light reflection.

Some guys will slot the rear face of the front blade and glue in a strip of ivory into the slot. Others use an angled bead with round notch rear, or V rear, or shallow Express-type V as on the rifle in the picture above.

 An excellent rear sight for use with a bead, is a deep U notch, where the bead sits in the bottom of the U and giving equal light on the bottom and sides. This sight is aimed as if it was an aperture rear sight and works for many people, including Mark, who has won the ALR Chunk Shoot 2 years in a row.  this sight would also be a good hunting sight, with the bead in the bottom for point blank shooting, and raised level with the top of the U for longer range, ie: a 150 yard zero.
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smylee grouch
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« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2010, 04:44:54 PM »

Sonny: what has worked for me (but maybe not for you) is a silver insert in the center of front sight. I cut a slot down  and in the center of the front sight and flux and solder (silver solder) then clean up every thing so when you look at it you see the silver bead. You can use a jewlers saw or a hacksaw with the set ground off the blade. You will probably have to experiment some to get the right size for your eyes. It might work and if it dont, you arnt out much. Gary
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Daryl
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« Reply #5 on: January 31, 2010, 09:51:55 PM »

Something else that works on the rifles we shoot with blade front sights, is to file a 45 debree angle on the rear top corner of teh blade, so the light can hit that spot.  the rear of the blade may be sloped, or straight up and down, doesnt' matter. The angle filed reflects the light when needed. In bright light out doors on light coloured targets a wipe with felt marker pen blackens it.  With light from the rear or above on a dark target or on the woods, rub the rear surface with your thumb and it's bright again.  The langled surface reflects light and appears as a bead of light, looking just as the bead looks like in the pictures I posted.  If the filed surface is 'square' in shape, ie: gives a square appearance when viewed from the rear at sight level, it appears as a round bright spot & is easily seen, especially on a deer's hide.  Due to being flat sided, it doesn't reflect light coming in from the side as a glare, and therefore doesn't throw shots.
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Dpeck
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« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2010, 04:50:54 AM »

I do as Daryl does  and use a relatively flat faced front sight and work a sor tof bead on it.  With that I see the top of the sight.  Tried purchased silver blade sight on my squirrel rifle this year and it was a disaster.  When I benched it I had a vertical string and really could not see the top of the sight.  Now am cutting it down to a brass bead and express rear.  Suspect older eyes also play a part in sight pictures.  If the Express sight works on teh squirrel rifle there will be a couple of others using them.  Too bad Daniel Boone didn't use peep sights.

DP
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Roger Fisher
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« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2010, 11:31:12 AM »

Something else that works on the rifles we shoot with blade front sights, is to file a 45 debree angle on the rear top corner of teh blade, so the light can hit that spot.  the rear of the blade may be sloped, or straight up and down, doesnt' matter. The angle filed reflects the light when needed. In bright light out doors on light coloured targets a wipe with felt marker pen blackens it.  With light from the rear or above on a dark target or on the woods, rub the rear surface with your thumb and it's bright again.  The langled surface reflects light and appears as a bead of light, looking just as the bead looks like in the pictures I posted.  If the filed surface is 'square' in shape, ie: gives a square appearance when viewed from the rear at sight level, it appears as a round bright spot & is easily seen, especially on a deer's hide.  Due to being flat sided, it doesn't reflect light coming in from the side as a glare, and therefore doesn't throw shots.
Well, I don't do as ol Daryl does; but I do believe that I will.  I have that problem i.e losing the frt sight on the black targets at times.   Sounds like a fix to me... Grin
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D. Taylor Sapergia
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« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2010, 03:13:07 PM »

One of our local fellows has one of my rifles that I built some time in the 80's.  The front sight was perfectly vertical and he got by fine with it in those days.  Now he has returned to shoot with us, and was having trouble seeing his front sight.  So I took Daryl's Leatherman, and filed a little 45 deg. angle on the tip of the sight to catch the light - Presto - good sight picture.
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D. Taylor Sapergia
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Walker Mountain
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« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2010, 11:32:43 PM »



 I prefer bear sights to have a flat, almost 45 degree angle, same angle with the top 1/16" of a blade sight front sight. That way, when it picks up light, the appearance is a perfectly round bead or a shiny flat surface, not highlighted on one side or the other to cause 'off' shot
I read that three times scratching my head each time,dumb me Its rear sights, going to try the convex on front sight these old eyes need lots of help, If I read it right the rear sights should be flat face slope back 45 degree?
Free Trapper
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Daryl
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« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2010, 09:53:51 AM »

sorry- typo -  it should have read 'rear' sight. Could have been 'bead' sight. Yes- 45 degree slant to the rear with a flat, not rounded surface - this goes for blades as well as beads.
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BrownBear
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« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2010, 10:51:53 AM »

I like the idea of the 45 flat if it beats the problem of shifting highlights and POI.  That experience has shown me you want clean edges on that front blade to help beat the highlights.

But after recent shooting I'm going to do away with silver front blades on all my small game rifles.  Finding a silver blade on a white rabbit and a snowy day is more than my old eyes can manage.  Since I use reduced loads in all my rifles for rabbits, I may do away with silver entirely.  Brass front blades may be my new fashion statement.
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The other DWS
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« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2010, 10:54:37 AM »

duh!!!,    I read that several times too, I just figured maybe you were using a special sight setup on a bear hunting rifle since you can run into challenging sight situations in that context.

I'm working n my 1st flinter in a long time, iron sights on a long barrel will be quite a change for me, specially since my eyes have not aged as well as the rest of me Roll Eyes
  I'm using a steel front rather than silver or brass but have not settled on a form yet.  I've done a lot of pistol shooting so the square cut post/notch sights have some attraction----maybe with a small 45 bevel on top of the front

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Dpeck
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« Reply #13 on: February 03, 2010, 10:58:14 AM »

But after recent shooting I'm going to do away with silver front blades on all my small game rifles.  Finding a silver blade on a white rabbit and a snowy day is more than my old eyes can manage.  Since I use reduced loads in all my rifles for rabbits, I may do away with silver entirely.  Brass front blades may be my new fashion statement.

For some reason I never really did pick up silver sights unless I blackened them.  Used to take the BP residue from cleaning patches and rub the side of the sights ro get rid of glare.  Just never could see the top of the sight.  Used brass beads for a long time.  Almost wish I could find a PC firesight with peep Grin Roll Eyes

DP
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Daryl
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« Reply #14 on: February 03, 2010, 11:12:43 AM »

I have steel blades on a couple rifles, and with the small 45 degree bevel on the rear top corner, they pick up light in the bush just fine.  I polish the rear filed angle with a bit of fine emery and crocus cloth. I carry a felt pen for darkening/dulling the sight if that's needed on light targets. Bunnies are light targets, as are steel plates covered with lead wash.  It only takes a few seconds to 'pen' a sight.  As noted in this thread, or perhaps another, the small angle on the rear of the blade, appears as a round dot with light from above, or behind. This really helps in dark bush.
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Skychief
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« Reply #15 on: February 03, 2010, 05:24:50 PM »

I am enjoying this thoughtful thread.   I have always drove myself mad trying to figure what the "best" sights should be!
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Daryl
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« Reply #16 on: February 03, 2010, 07:54:11 PM »

Trouble is, the best sights for one person seldom do the perfect job for another. All our eyes are slightly different - sight placement is merely another important aspect of open iron sights.  As we get older, we need that rear sight farther down the tube. What worked 20 years ago, probably isn't as good now - that's my excuse and i'm sticking with it.
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BJH
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« Reply #17 on: February 13, 2010, 10:08:26 AM »

 I never found silver to be a good material for front sights for me.  No matter how I filed them I could not see them well.  I agree that a .45 degree angle on the rear of the sight blade works best for me in the widest variety of conditions, and targets.  Sights need to be first and foremost visible.  Experimentation with different materials and profiles is necessary to find the best compromise for your eyes.  Nice sharp edges are great for sight picture but murder on loading hands. All setups are conpromises.
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BJH
hanshi
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« Reply #18 on: February 13, 2010, 05:16:58 PM »

For the woods, nothing shows up (for me) quite as well as one with a vertical back painted with a flat white paint of some kind.  It seems to stand out very well against dim, woods targets.
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Scott Semmel
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« Reply #19 on: February 14, 2010, 11:46:29 AM »

Daryl- I've been a daily reader of this forum for several years and at times I begin to think I've heard all this before- then a nugget of wisdom like your previous post comes up and I remember why I value this forum-thanks
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Joey R
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« Reply #20 on: February 14, 2010, 01:47:44 PM »

Daryl's excuse? Go's for me too!! Wink
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Daryl
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« Reply #21 on: February 15, 2010, 09:53:57 AM »

Thanks guys - it's the truth, honest.
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Canute Rex
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« Reply #22 on: February 15, 2010, 11:33:15 PM »

After reading the first few posts in this thread I took a fine file to my front brass blade and rear steel notch. I filed a 45 degree angle on both. Now my sight picture is a bright brass dot and a horizontal silver (steel) line with a break in the middle. It glows as if battery powered, even in overcast light. I just competed in the Southern Vermont Primitive Biathlon and it showed up against the gongs in the woods just fine, as well as a  paper target. I could see exactly how much I was shaking after running through the woods on snowshoes.
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osceola
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« Reply #23 on: February 18, 2010, 12:19:55 PM »

I been tinkering with Ivory, it gets dark here Quick, in the Swamps of Florida, White on the Back of Mine adds 10 minutes er so, I am wondering and trying to figure out how to affix/Make one from Ivory...
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Daryl
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« Reply #24 on: February 19, 2010, 10:17:52 AM »

Ivory is very good in the bush, without glaring in heavy light - I have one on my .375 Winchester lever gun - was good enough for 2 moose.
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