View Full Version : Sights way off

August 16, 2010, 01:18 PM
I have two pistols ( a 1911 and a Tok ) that both shoot way low, I'm talking 12 to 18 inches. They both have fixed sights. I'm guessing this isn't anything I could do myself but how would a gunsmith approach this sort of problem?

August 16, 2010, 01:27 PM
Two things to check:
1- Are the loads the same as the pistol was set up to fire? Typically, if the POI is way low, you are shooting higher velocity/lower bullet weight ammo than the pistol was designed for. Not a problem, really, but it would be the first thing I would check. If you intend to keep shooting that ammo, go to #2, otherwise just change ammo.

2- If the front sight is too high or the rear too low, either replace the rear sight with a taller sight, or lower the front sight by removing some off of the top of the sight. I prefer to replace the rear sight, it's easier to fix and change, and you don't have the "ooooooops!" or the disappearing front sight issues.

August 16, 2010, 01:33 PM
You didn't say at what range this is happening, but if it is at 50 feet to 25 yards, that kind of difference is common if the sights are set for 230 grain hardball and you shoot a 185 grain bullet. Bullet weight has more effect on vertical point of impact than any other single factor except incorrect sights themselves.

If you want to be able to switch bullet weights at will, you want an adjustable rear sight installed.

August 16, 2010, 02:45 PM
What's your experience level? I'd suspect that both guns doing the same thing means its you, not the guns.

August 16, 2010, 02:51 PM
I knew there would be questions, just wasn't sure what they may be.
The 1911 loads are 230 grn that I reload myself. I have another 1911 which
I can do about a 4" group at 25 feet but as soon as I switch to the other gun
I'm not even on the paper. I think there is too much play in the slide to frame
fit but it is still fairly consistent, just very low.
The Tok is actually a Yugo 57 in 7.62x25 and I have tried several different loads from hot mil surplus to barely cycles the action. It just seems that if the sights were at least closer that I could adjust when I aim but they are so far off I'm not even sure where to aim.
I'll start paying more attention to the loads and see where that leads me.

August 17, 2010, 12:35 PM
If the problem goes away or is greatly reduced when you shoot from sandbags, then it is a shooter problem. You are anticipating recoil and pushing or pulling down on the gun down to try to stop fight it. If you are having this problem to the exact same degree when shooting off sandbags that solidly support the gun as you do shooting free standing, then it is the gun and not the shooter, in which case the cure is a higher rear sight.

Correction of a foot at 25 yards for a full-size 1911 would call for about 1/4" higher rear sight. That's an awful lot. A quarter of that is not an unusual correction. Because it is so much, I am suspecting the sandbag test will tell there is a difference. You can also see for yourself by mixing some dummy rounds in with your ammo and having a friend load the mags so you don't know when the gun will go bang and when it will go snap. Turn a target backward and aim at the blank paper so you can see the front sight outlined really clearly. Force yourself to keep your eyes open through the discharge so you can watch the front sight bounce up then return to position (a good way to check your grip, BTW, as a sight always landing way right or left mean the gun needs to be rotated a little in your grip). When the hammer falls on the dummy, the gun and the sights should not move, but should remain still on the target. If you see them dive down, you know you're flinching or anticipating recoil. Both movements start in the shooter's hand before the hammer even gets to the firing pin. That's why they throw the bullets so far off.

August 17, 2010, 12:57 PM
Tokarevs have numbered rear sights to allow the armorer to adjust point-of-aim/point-of-impact. The higher the number, the taller the rear sight.