How to adjust a Ruger Vaquero front sight.

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jspick

Bearcat
Joined
Apr 20, 2023
Messages
39
Location
montana
I have a Ruger Vaquero that shoots to the right. Can the silver solder be heated up enought to move the sight blade to the right enough to get it on target? I've never delt with a fixed sight gun before.
Thanks, John
 

contender

Ruger Guru
Joined
Sep 18, 2002
Messages
26,111
Location
Lake Lure NC USA
Well, if you heat it up,, you may find yourself losing a front sight eventually. And if a blued gun,, you may find you'll discolor the bluing on the barrel.

Some folks try & SLIGHTLY turn the barrel. Others have CAREFULLY & very slightly bent the front sight with a brass hammer & punch.

I had one that shot to the left. Super accurate,, but to the left. I chose a different route due to NOT wanting to screw with such accuracy. I had a gunsmith open up the rear sight channel on ONE side, just a tiny amount,, (stainless gun) and it fixed my windage issue.
 

TestEngineer

Bearcat
Joined
Jan 7, 2022
Messages
99
The first thing to check is your finger placement. Too far out on the trigger tends to push the muzzle to the left. Too far in tends to pull the muzzle to the right.

Contender's suggestion for opening the rear sight is one valid option. Another option is to taper the top of the front sight. 3 of 4 Standard model mark pistols I've owned had the front sight a bit rotated to the right causing POI to be a bit to the left. Moving the rear sight to the right would have only worked to center the POI at a single distance. So I added a taper to the front sight instead. I took a bit more off the right than the left to center the top of the sight. I really like this fix better than opening the rear sight because it makes centering the front sight on target more precise. It has worked very well for me, with no left/right drift as my distance to target changes.
 

jspick

Bearcat
Joined
Apr 20, 2023
Messages
39
Location
montana
My Vaquero is stainless so not a problem with heat. The opening up the slot is a good thought! My finger placement is good. I have a matching pair of Stainless Vaqueros and one is dead on and the other shoots to the right. About 6" at 50ft. Still open for other ideas.
 

Rich/KY

Bearcat
Joined
Dec 1, 2023
Messages
21
Location
Corbin, KY
To correct 6 inches at 50 feet will require significant thinning of the front sight. Might need both a thinning of the front sight and opening of the rear notch. Have you called Ruger about the issue, To my way of thinking it should not have left the factory with the sights that badly misaligned.
 
Joined
Dec 5, 2011
Messages
544
Location
FL
I think if you call Ruger and return the gun with your target that they can help correct it. Working with a local gunsmith can also work out, but will take time to dial it in perfectly. He will likely reclock the barrel, then address barrel-to-cylinder gap (if necessary) afterwards. I used a rubber hammer and hockey puck and covered it with heavy card stock. I'd lay the side of the front blade against the hockey puck, cover the barrel, then strike the barrel with the hammer. Since I'm afraid to do this at my local NRA range (figuring I'd upset others around), it takes me at least a half-dozen trips to sneak up on the slow progress. Eventually it gets close enough for me. I don't shoot my short-barrel Vaqueros at long distances (usually just thirty or for feet), so I have reasonable expectations. As mentioned, first make sure your grip thickness fits your hand and that your trigger finger is pulling straight back on the trigger when the hammer falls. Getting this geometry right is critical. Otherwise, you might find that changing point of impact is just as easy as getting custom (or different) grips. Many years ago when I was new to Vaqueros, I was shooting to the left. I let another guy shoot it at the same time and he was dead-on center. It made me spend more time making sure my gun fit me first before changing anything. Now I've had many Vaqueros and they all wear the same thickness of grips that fit my hand and promote good geometry. Sone need no front sight adjustment, sone need a little, and some need a lot. When you get a Vaquero set you so your POI with its most accurate load is dead-on, then you'll never sell it. It's good to have a couple or a few like this, then just buy Blackhawks with adjustable sights from then on to save time.
 

jspick

Bearcat
Joined
Apr 20, 2023
Messages
39
Location
montana
Thanks for the insight seasterl. I have tow of the ruger stainless vaqueroes in 44 mag. One shoots fine the other is off at 50ft. Same grips so I'm sure that isn't the problem.

Rich/KY I'm thinking along those lines that it shouldn't have lfet the factory that way.

needsmostuff, a dove tail would fix it for sure. I'm just not ready to do something that permanent.

I think I will reclock the barrel next. Then call Ruger.
 

woodperson

Single-Sixer
Joined
Sep 27, 2004
Messages
471
Location
Knoxville, TN
You can use proportions to calculate how far you need to move the sight. With a 9" sight radius and at 50 feet (600 inches) you need to move the center of the front or back sight about .015 inches (15 thousands). So think about that number if you are contemplating bending or filing or clocking. Measure the width of front and/or rear sight now and then calculate how much you will need to file to move the center the 15 thousands. That sounds like a lot to me and I think a call to Ruger is in order at least to see what they have to offer on the subject.

Reclocking seems the best way to go if you can actually do that. Probably what Ruger would do. But calling Ruger first would seem to be the better order to go to me.
 
Last edited:

jspick

Bearcat
Joined
Apr 20, 2023
Messages
39
Location
montana
I put the Vaquero in my sight fixture and put some slight pressure on the sight to go to the left. I then heated the barrel up until the silver solder melted. The sight moved a small amount. I let it cool and now I have a gun that shoots very close to right on the money as far as windage goes.

Thanks to all of you who gave your input. John
 

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