Sixgun open sights for hunting

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Bill in Oregon
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Sixgun open sights for hunting

#1 Post by Bill in Oregon » Thu May 09, 2019 1:49 pm

What works best for you on a deer-and-larger hunting sixgun?
Saw where one guy replaced the front post on a Blackhawk with a fiber optic sight. I have also long been intrigued by the shallow-vee rear and gold dot or ivory front bead "express sight" often used on dangerous game double rifles. Ruger has put these on some of their handguns. Looking for a fast, accurate field sight for aged eyes that will work in bright light and dim without going to a red dot.

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JimT
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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#2 Post by JimT » Thu May 09, 2019 2:49 pm

over 60 years of shooting handguns I have tried most every kind of "iron" sight for the sixgun including the peep rear sight and the shallow v with a bead front sight. None are as accurate as the standard Patridge sight.

I do whatever I have to in order to be able to see the sights. I have used diopters with good results.

These are the sights on my .41 Magnum. I took an elk with it at about 90 yards a couple years ago. It will still do the job.

Image

Image

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#3 Post by Bill in Oregon » Thu May 09, 2019 3:22 pm

Thanks, Jim. You are all right with those in timber?

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#4 Post by JimT » Thu May 09, 2019 3:34 pm

I have been so far. When I shot the elk it was overcast and raining slightly ... I like more light of course but you use what you have. Those sights of Bowen's show up real well for me. Everyone's eyes are different of course so I would say experiment and see what works for you.

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#5 Post by AJMD429 » Thu May 09, 2019 5:32 pm

I really like an aperture 'ghost ring' rear on a handgun. Some outfit makes 'em for the Rugers that are a drop-in replacement for the rear notch blade, and I think they also make 'em for S&W as well.

On my Ruger Mk-II clone (AMT Hunter) I have a Williams aperture rear and on the front blade since it needed more height, I soldered one of the spring-steel pins that has a hole down the middle to it after filing the split-side flat to match the blade top, and after drilling out the center hole just a tad. The result is an aperture both front and rear. In dim light or haste, you use the rear ghost ring and the front as a 'post' and you'll be good enough, but if you have the light and an extra second to aim, you can center your target in the front aperture hole, and with that 'automatically' centered in the ghost ring as normally happens, you will be right on target every time, and precisely.

I don't have pics of either handy, but if the descriptions merit curiosity PM me or post on the thread to remind me and I'll eventually find pictures and post them.
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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#6 Post by jeepnik » Thu May 09, 2019 6:37 pm

There was a time with a nice square notch rear and post front with a moderate amount of daylight on either side worked well. Today, not so much. I'm finding that, like others a ghost ring works best. I first tried theses on my favorite 1911. I was surprised at the improvement. Now, most folks won't get as tight a "group" with a ghost ring. But for minute of critter they are much better than sights you can't see. I closing in on having ghost rings on all of my adjustable sighted handguns, and a couple of rifles as well.
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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#7 Post by Bill in Oregon » Thu May 09, 2019 10:04 pm

Hmm. I tried the Omega aperture sight blade on a Ruger sixgun many years ago and felt it covered way too much real estate to be fast or practical. Maybe I should take another look at handgun peeps now that I am so ... "mature."

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#8 Post by AJMD429 » Thu May 09, 2019 10:17 pm

I don't know what brand I used but it came with two aperture sizes and the larger one was definitely better for me.

I'll see if I can find pictures....

FOUND 'EM..... :mrgreen:

1. viewtopic.php?f=1&t=43947

2. viewtopic.php?f=1&t=43463

Lots of pictures in these threads.....SEE 'EM before PhotoSuckit deletes them....!
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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#9 Post by AJMD429 » Fri May 10, 2019 6:21 am

Here's an attempt at a re-post of my two 'handgun aperture sight' posts...

First Post:

On another thread I mentioned making a double-ring sight for a pistol I have, and of course after making it, I see one in a catalog of 'specialty' sights, and wonder why I didn't know they existed before. I could have saved some time, but would have spent more money, and not had the fun of making my own.

Anyway, it got me to thinking, once in awhile you see some really 'different' sights on handguns (or long guns), and thought I'd post what I wound up with, in case anyone wanted to experiment similarly.

I find these sights really helpful in that with good light, you just place your small target in the front aperture, line up, and it WILL be hit, provided the sight-in distance and your target's distance are appropriate. For faster shooting or in dim light, the front can be used as a regular 'post' sight would be.

I did this because buying the gun used with a 'claw' type scope mount on it, there was no rear sight, and I had a spare Williams WRGS I'd used on a Contender pistol and always liked.

The front blade needed to be taller, so instead of buying a new one, I just used a round file to 'concave' the top of the front one a bit, then sweated a hollow roll-pin onto the top of it.

Here's the Rear, the Front, and the Sight Picture:
Image
Image
Image

Second Post:

Several of my firearms have rear-apertures, ranging from a factory 'One-Ragged-Hole' one for a Redhawk to ones made from scrap metal washers for a H&R Topbreak and a Contender .22 Hornet, to a Williams WGRS made for some round-barrel gun that I modified to put on an AMT clone of a Ruger Mark-II target pistol. The latter gun even has a front aperture, allowing precision shooting OR more rapid/low-light shooting.

< EDIT - pictures added > NOTE that when actually used, you see the front sight and your target, and really don't even perceive the rear sight, just like using a peep on a rifle. It just is beyond my photgraphic skills to make them look that way in a photograph...I think the first one (WGRS on Ruger Mk-II clone) is the closest to what they really look like to half-century old eyes.

The Redhawk one (third picture) is the commercial drop-in one for Rugers, but I think the blade is too thick for the 'ghost ring' effect I prefer. It might be faster to pick-up though.

The WGRS (first and last pictures) has a nice thin rear blade, as did the 'washer' one I made for a Contender (fourth picture). The H&R 999 one is more like a regular 'notch' with a roof over it. All of them work pretty well.

Image

Image

Image

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Image

My only comment on the Redhawk one (a replacement rear sight blade from some commercial maker via Brownells or MidwayUSA most likely - can't remember) is that it was bigger in aperture than I'd make it if making my own.

ALL of them work well and I prefer them to 'open' or 'notch' type sights of any type. Not enough to re-fit all my firearms, mind you, but I do like them best.

I'd say if you don't want to use the eyeglasses-aperture (which sounds like a cool idea to me, actually), experiment with a 'home-made' aperture sight just by using some duct-tape and old scrap washers or nuts or whatever, to see if it gives you a viable sight-picture. Then if it does, determine the diameter hole and blade width that you prefer, and either make one, or if it's close to one of the pre-fab ones, go with them. Making a replacement rear-blade for a Ruger adjustable sight is a piece of cake - just find a bit of metal the right thickness and drill and file away...
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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#10 Post by marlinman93 » Fri May 10, 2019 9:51 am

The standard S&W target Patridge blade and target rear have always worked best for me. I've never hunted with any other handguns in my safe, except my S&W.
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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#11 Post by Old No7 » Fri May 10, 2019 12:28 pm

Bill in Oregon wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 1:49 pm
I have also long been intrigued by the shallow-vee rear and gold dot or ivory front bead "express sight" often used on dangerous game double rifles. Ruger has put these on some of their handguns. Looking for a fast, accurate field sight for aged eyes that will work in bright light and dim without going to a red dot.
Hi Bill:

I have several S&W revolvers setup with the V rear and gold-dot front -- they work really well on plates, for plinking and or on small game too (as I use these on 22s and a 32 Mag). This setup might work well for you too, as it works great in varying conditions and is "fast" to acquire. A fiber-optic front with the Vee rear would work well too.

Here's the SDM Gold Dot front sight (click for link to web):

gold bead front.jpg

And here's a Bowen Classic Arms "Vee" or Rough Country rear sight (click for link to web):

S&amp;W 617 sights 01.jpg
(The front sight barely visible on that image was a smaller homemade brass pin...)

Good luck!

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#12 Post by Grizz » Sat May 11, 2019 4:02 pm

Bill in Oregon wrote:
Thu May 09, 2019 10:04 pm
Hmm. I tried the Omega aperture sight blade on a Ruger sixgun many years ago and felt it covered way too much real estate to be fast or practical. Maybe I should take another look at handgun peeps now that I am so ... "mature."
my main Alaska meat gun was a Ruger SBH 44 with the ?9.5" barrel. I used that omega peep blade on the rear and modified the front sight by sawing the blade off of the ramp, filing a dovetail across the ramp and installing a rifle sight with a Very Fine brass bead. my eyes were oh so much younger then, but that gun was like a carbine, steady, reliable, grouping 325gr hard cast bullets into the heads and hearts of many many deer. many of them shot from the skiff at various ranges. don't know the longest shot, but I head shot about half of them. the other half didn't cooperate for a good sight picture or just hid from me. then the boiler room was the location and if I was unsure of the distance I held on the hairline of the back. I was super confident of the windage and knew I would land a round somewhere between the spine and the heart, and that's how it worked out. but, I had young eyes, and all the shots I've described have living witnesses to keep me honest. So, I cannot fault in any way the fine bead front sight and omega rear peep. It was so easy! The bullet landed where the bead was when the bullet left the barrel. Other advantages, there were no batteries to manage, rain did not mess up the sight picture and the strange front glow of powered optics wasn't alarming the venisons.... other than that, I can't think of anything else to recommend it. My daughter owns the gun and I will happily take anyone out to the woods to try it out, if there's any interest. I trained my kids this way, "the bead is the bullet". Ciao

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#13 Post by Bill in Oregon » Sat May 11, 2019 4:06 pm

Cool post, Grizz. Thanks.

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#14 Post by Bill in Oregon » Tue May 14, 2019 4:29 pm

JimT, this replacement for the Ruger from Fermin Garza has a hint of backward rake, like the one on your Bowen. Anyone use these? I had not seen them before.
https://fermincgarza.com/shop?olsPage=p ... ront-sight

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#15 Post by JimT » Tue May 14, 2019 4:44 pm

Bill in Oregon wrote:
Tue May 14, 2019 4:29 pm
JimT, this replacement for the Ruger from Fermin Garza has a hint of backward rake, like the one on your Bowen. Anyone use these? I had not seen them before.
https://fermincgarza.com/shop?olsPage=p ... ront-sight
Yes. Some of The Shootists have them on their guns. Nice sights!

Suggestion: Before you start buying sights, try making your own "diaopter" for your glasses. You can cut them out of aluminum pop or beer cans. Forgive the sloppy drawing but you get the idea. Make several with different size holes. Most of the time you can find one that will make the sights stand out more clear.

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#16 Post by Larkbill » Tue May 14, 2019 5:01 pm

The drop in ghost ring sight is https://www.warrencustomoutdoor.com/one ... ights.html

I ordered one for one of my Blackhawks and it came with two sizes. one was perfect for my 4 5/8 .45 Colt, and as a bonus the other worked great on my 6 1/2 .357. I'm 68 and find they work well with my old eyes.
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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#17 Post by Bill in Oregon » Tue May 14, 2019 6:08 pm

Thanks Jim. I have the Lyman suction-cup diopter and will experiment with it at the range. My main concern is accurate sight acquisition here in our dark elk woods in December.

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Re: Sixgun open sights for hunting

#18 Post by 33wcfshooter » Tue May 14, 2019 8:54 pm

I like the Express v gold bead setup I have my freedom arms 83 set up that way and it works for me fast and accurate and the bead is great doesn't cover up too much and the gold bead really helps on seeing it against animal hair. Another good sight is the old S&W red ramp front and white outline rear easy to pick up in most light.

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