Instalii night sites on a pistol?

Thread starter #1


Deranged Throat-Puncher
I just purchased an m&p full-size and I'd like to keep it as a nightstand gun. With that said I was looking at some night sites with tritium. It had a warning type comment on the one I was looking at, that says the sights must be changed by a gunsmith. I've looked at the gun, and watched a couple YouTube videos. It doesn't really seem hard at all. Has anyone changed thier sights out thierself?
Lights and laser are good, but they also show where you are. And, I am a firm believer in Murphy's law. What can go wrong, will go wrong, at the most inopportune time.

I put tritium sights on my intruder pistol. The sights are very good. Putting the sights on is not as simple as loosening the set screw and sliding one out and the other in. They generally fit VERY tightly. Best done by a gun smith or a buddy that has the proper tool to slide one out and the other in.

I have a super bright Cree bulb light beside the pistol. I can use it or not, as the need may dictate.

Two responses, First, it does take a little skill to replace the sights. That is the reason for the, "by gunsmith only" recommendation. If you are good with small tools, have some experience working on firearms, and are comfortable doing it yourself - do it. Should the unlikely occur and you mess up the install, just be ready with a good story when you take it in to a gunsmith!

Second, for a bedside gun, you would probably do better mounting a light and laser. I cannot imagine waking at 3:00 AM, on a moonless, cloudy night needing a weapon, AND accurately identifying the target in the dark, AND getting a good fast sight picture over iron sights - even if they do glow! - - - I can imagine squeezing a grip and getting a very intense flashlight, with a sighting dot somewhere in the middle of that light, to quickly identify what is in my bedroom - before my finger touches the trigger!


Senior Member
I watched YouTube then bought brass punches at Harbor freight and installed tritium sights on my M&P. It was not too difficult. Just followed the instructions.


Senior Member
I've done trigger upgrades on an M&P that required removal of the rear sight to access the plunger and spring. It was fairly easy, but the sight on the gun I was working on had been secured with red threadlocker. Once I hit it with some CLP and let it soak and then heated it for a minute or so with a lighter it popped out with a little coersion from a punch and my gunsmithing hammer. Should be no challenge at all to change to night sights.


Senior Member
I put night sights on my M&P C, 5 or 6 years ago. I bought them from these people, they still have the best price I've found.{47}Rear-ProGlo-SW%2d301.html?google=1#
The rear sight is simple. The front is where the problems might be. I took a 3/8 brass punch and ground/filed a flat on the bottom and flats on both sides to match the size of the dovetail. I put the slide in a leather padded vise deep enough that the front sight base was "just" higher than the vise jaws. The vise must be tight enough the slide doesn't try to turn but not so tight you crush the slide.
Now taking a 3 lb sledge and placing the punch in the dovetail, holding it level, I made one whack and out popped the front sight.
You don't want to beat on the sight to install the new one, that can damage the vial. I take some fine sandpaper about 320 grit and place it on a perfectly flat surface. Now holding the front sight level slide it back and forth across the sandpaper. Check regularly it gets too small quick. I do this until the sight fits into the dovetail and will slide in with medium taps.
I have previously measured where I want the sight to be with dial calipers. Remove the sight and clean the base and dovetails with alcohol, be careful not to get any on the sights, then clean the dovetail in the slide. Allow both to dry then coat the dovetails both on the sight and slide with LocTight 660 and tap the sight back to your mark, allow to dry. Done right the front sight will never move on it's on.
In a pinch I have also used Blue LocTight with success. The better your fit the better LocTight works.
I've done a lot of work with dovetails and sights so this does'nt bother me but I think for most people having a gunsmith do it is best.