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cant get front sight of my gun HELP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

1195 Views 13 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  mr. pitiful
I am replacing the front sight on my Wilson, and I cantr get the damm thing off. I have put it in a vice, bet the hell out of it with a punch and a hammer and NOTHNG. not a bit. I have murdered the old sight and dont want to do any more dammage. I checked thinking, "maybe its staked dumb ass" but its not, and there are no gunsmiths around hear that work on pistols, here in north dakota if it aint a shotgun or a deer rifle they wont touch it, and I cant send it off because I need it soon. Any tips

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Hi mr. pitiful, is it a cross dovetail front sight? It may be lock tighted in, but it sounds way to tight. Try warming it-up with a propane torch if you have one or a couple of matches if you don't have a torch, just apply a few 100 degrees, careful not to discolor the steel, and try again.
This should melt the lock tight.

Metal Smith

The only thing I know for sure is what I can measure!
NRA Life Member
Hello mr. pitiful,
If you are using a vise with padded jaws this may be part of your problem. For removing front sights I use a tool makers vise with lead plates. For heat I use an electric heat gun as it does not seem to discolor the metal.
Regards, Bob Hunter www.huntercustoms.com
wel, I found out the problem, UNFORUNATELY. I called wilsons and apparently, they cut the dovetail, and then WELD THEM IN PLACE. Now im really screwed cause I cant find a smith that will cut it out because wth the weld they will hit hard spots and ruin theyre cutters. I guess im gonna have to send it of to wilson. Had I known I would have never bought a new sight and NEVER beat the hell out of this one. Well, I guess I have learned ANOTHER lesson in life. Dont be cheap, it always costs you more in the long run. Its funny how I keep learning this same lesson over, and over..and over............
Thanks for the heads up... Welded? Hmm.. nope, not for me...
Are you sure they said "weld."? If it's only silver soldered, which makes more sense, you can melt it and get it off. And if you're careful and use the right heat, it won't ruin the finish.
I'm learning why we call you 'Mr. Pitiful'
yup, they said weld. what...did you think I picked tht name out of a hat? Im too impatient too often. But everyone I talked to at the gun club and online all said punch and hammer, who would have thought they welded them on.
You're right, a punch and hammer is the normal response to that problem. I just wonder if you could take that slide to a machine shop and get a guy to grind it out for you. It is possible and just might be cheaper than that next day air crap.
Whoever it was at Wilson's that said it's welded in is mistaken, that dovetailed front sight is not welded or soldered in, NFW. Call again and ask again. You somehow got hold of somebody who didn't know exactly what they were talking about, pretty unusual at WC. You need a good solid setup, and a good solid punch, not something too long and flimsy.... everything has to be dead solid to make sure the hammer whack is getting transmitted fully to the sight, and that the slide meanwhile is anchored and can't move along with the blow, absorbing some of the force. Best o' luck.
If you haven't sent the pistol off yet, why not try to see if it is really welded? Just take a cut right across the middle of that mess..with a hacksaw if you're really a careful worker, or with a Dremel and cutoff wheel if you're not. With the metal gone, a punch should take it right out if it's not welded. If it is, well, adios.
I also had a front sight from hell that would not come off. I did exactly what Bob Brown said...I cut it in half with my dremel and knocked it right out.
My heart goes out to you. Wilson has always done weird things. I told Bill that he ought to learn how to spell "Barrel" if he was going to do gunsmithing vidios. Alas, another friend gone. He has some gunsmiths there that should be top notch. I'm amazed that they would do that to you. They even finally learned how to fit a beaver tail! We all do stuff like this so don't feel bad. You learned a cheap lesson and didn't blow up a gun. Never be hard on yourself for a learning experience.Just get on with it and have Bill put on the sight you want. He's a good man and will take care of you.
Ned Christianson, you were absolutely right. It just didnt make sense to me to cut a dovetail and then weld it up. so I called wilsons back today. LUCKILY, I got a hold of somone else. old them what I was told and what I should do and he told me that I was missinformed. Tthey are NOT welded and just "locktited". He told m to let some brakefree sit o it for a while and hit from left to right"that info would have been helpful before as well" any way, it took ALOT of good whacks but she's off. Thanks all.
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