How to adjust sights on old rifle and pistol?

Thread starter #1
I was at the local outdoor WMA range and realized that both an old 22 lr rifle and old revolver that I have need their sights adjusted.
What is the best method to move the sights that are 'wedged' in the barrels of these old guns?
Should I use a brass punch and tap it with a mallet or can someone recommend a method?


🚜frying fish driveler
Brownell has a sight removal tool if you want one. Google it.
The brass punch will work with light taps. Then again there ain’t nothing wrong with a little “ Kentucky windage” on a old one. I’m pretty sure that term came from adjusting the buckhorn sights on old Kentucky rifles anyway.


Senior Member
Some of those sights are TIGHT. You may have to take a piece of steel keystock and grind it on your bench grinder to make a punch to move dovetailed sights. Even brass will bend the sight bases, so the steel makes no more mess of the sights than the brass. Hold the barreled action very tight in your bench vise and have at the sights with punch and hammer. Move the rear sight in the direction that you want the bullet strike to move. The front sight is moved in the opposite direction.


Staff member
Brass punch usually works well.


Staff member
Use a punch and small hammer, and drift it whichever way it needs to move. Take your time, and use finesse.

Anvil Head

Senior Member
Be smart - mark where the site is before you start moving it. Just a little nick on site base and barrel. Having that reference point will save you a lot of guessing later. It doesn't take much movement of the front site to make difference in POI, so go lightly.

Also Bullgator is right, lot of the old school sights had slightly tapered bases. That's why you see so many old 22's with knarled up sight bases ..... Dang! this sucker won't budge. Try the other side - oh that last lick musta loosened er up.