View Full Version : Sight drifter for XD

Ken O
September 20, 2007, 08:22 PM
I want to put a fiber-optic on my XD-45, is there a tool to drift it out? I have a Wheeler to do rifles with, but doen't fit the XD. Is using a punch/hammer acceptable?

September 20, 2007, 08:40 PM
The XD sights been reported to be a VERY tight fit. MGW makes a sight pusher for the XD


Harry Bonar
September 22, 2007, 06:21 PM
In 50 years I've never used a sight pusher - yes, a good hammer and aluninum or brass punch is AOK!
Harry B.

T. O'Heir
September 22, 2007, 07:53 PM
"...MGW makes..." Expensive, so it is. Not as expensive as the ones Brownell's sells though.
A brass punch will do, but it won't be as precise putting the fibre sight in. The fibre sight may not be as robust as the existing sight either. A small padded jawed vise might help.

Ken O
September 22, 2007, 08:08 PM
Thanks for the replys. The reason I asked was I ruined a Willams FO sight putting it in my Marlin Guide Gun with a punch and hammer, they are pretty fragile. So I got the Wheeler tool and put another one in.
The sight I ordered for the XD is the Advantage http://www.advantagetactical.com/index.html its kind of pricey, so I didn't want to screw it up.

T. O'Heir
September 22, 2007, 08:36 PM
Hi. Sexy looking sight. Use a plastic mallet, not a hammer. The side you hit matters too. The XD sights appear to come out left to right. And the reverse to go back in. Mind you, I'm going by the SA manual's parts drawing.

Superhouse 15
September 23, 2007, 06:48 PM
The XDs I'm seeing in the shop lately have super tight sights press fit in. The other gunsmith broke that Brownell's tool trying to move one, and a brass punch and hammer got zero results in either direction. You may have to cut the originals to remove them. Springfield won't change sights, but will remove yours for free.

September 23, 2007, 07:15 PM
those are some interesting sights..

And the sights are in there pretty tight. Lucky for me I don't use sights very much so I don't need them as I got my point shooting down with the XDs.

If at all possible, like said before, springfield will remove them for free if you send your slide to them. That's your best option to avoid damage

September 25, 2007, 08:40 AM
The XD sights are super tight. I clamp the slide in my 4 inch wilton vise with the sight centered in the middle of the vise. I use the biggest brass punch that will work and larger ball peen hammer. My 4oz. ball peen will never knock them out. The new sight should be fitted to the slide. I fit the new sight so it will go all most half way into the dovetail with my fingers. This is a bit tedious. File and try, file and try. You use the correct file either a 60 or a 65 degree sight file. You work on the sight not the slide. Sometimes you have to take some metal off of the dovetails of the sight or the bottom of the dovetail and in some cases you have to file the bottom of the blade so it doesn't run into the top of the slide. There is a company here in Atlanta that sells night sights that go back in with no fitting. I put on a set for a guy the other day. He bought them at a local gun shop. I got the phone number off the box and gave then a call and requested some literature. I also told them thanks for making them a drop in fit.

September 25, 2007, 01:58 PM
I can now confirm the super tight XD sights. I swapped out the factory sights on the XD45 tactical for a set of Heinie straight-eights the other day.

End results was that I ended up ruining two brass punches and had to use a steel one. Several HARD whacks got the sights moving in their dovetails. The front sight required much more effort than the rear.

September 25, 2007, 02:39 PM
FWIW, I let my local smith put the Tru-Glo sights in my XD45, and it was worth the $25 he charged me. He had a sight tool, I didn't. ;)

Ken O
September 25, 2007, 08:22 PM
Well, I put the slide in the vise, got a brass punch, and it just mushroomed. I tried a steel and it still didn't budge. I put Kroil on it before even trying. I then made up a jig by taking a 3/16 bold and grinding it into a half moon shape like a sight pusher. I mesured down on the vise jaws to where I want it to push. (the fat part of the slide should be under the jaws, or it will just rock). I welded the bolt on a piece of angle iron so I wont have to hold the bolt, the top of the angle iron sits on top of the vise jaw. I put a piece of wood on the side of the slide so the sight will push out without hitting the jaw. The rear sight pushed out with lots of pressure, its an 8" vise that weights 135 pounds. The front didn't budge, it just bent the bolt. So I got out the Metabo with the waffer wheel and cut the sight out.
The new sights went in without a problem, it has a section of the dovetail that has a hex bolt to lock it in.
I did call Springfield and they offered to get the sights out for free.

Shooters Plus
October 11, 2007, 06:03 PM
I feel your pain. I ruined a Dawson F/O sight trying to replace it. I ended up having to split the sight with a cut-off tool to get it out.

October 11, 2007, 06:36 PM
Never changed sights on an XD, but, as others have posted, they reputedly are a very tight fit. I'd go with the MGW sight tool. (Or you could send your slide to ol' Harry and let him beat it to death!:D)

Harry Bonar
October 12, 2007, 09:06 AM
Yes! I've got a 16 pound sledge I use too!
Harry B.:)

October 15, 2007, 07:40 PM
The suresights have issues with the paint on them. I would not buy them until they recess the area the paint is applied. The paint wears off with very few holstering and unholstering drills. Look on xdtalk there are many a unhappy folk with the paint on those sights. Good luck using a punch. I recommend freezing the slide for a day or two first. Many people who fubared their slide from using a punch. A lot of the time the stock sights have to be cut out.

Harry Bonar
October 23, 2007, 08:21 PM
Hey Guys:
I'll tell you one that will save us all a little trouble - On the late Winchester 45 long colt 94s. if you do get the front sight off the bottom of it will go into the bore and have rifling on it - I found that out the hard way!!!.
Those rifles ought to be left alone - cheap, cheap!
Hey AlleyKat - With that sledge I sometimes bend the muzzke a little bit but I just drive the sight to compensate for it.:)
Harry B.

October 23, 2007, 10:17 PM
Harry: Buy yourself a nice sight pusher for Christmas! ;)

Harry Bonar
October 24, 2007, 03:23 PM
Hey! AlleyKat:
Would you believe it - I actually have one hanging above the bench! Maybe I'd better learn to use it!
Harry B.:)

October 25, 2007, 08:49 AM
Better late, than never, I suppose!:p