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Old March 4, 2018, 11:56 AM   #1
arquebus357
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S&W Model 64 4" to 3" Barrel

I'm in the final stage of this project and only need to add a new front sight. I plan to silver braze in a piece if stainless steel. My problem is sourcing stainless steel in the needed thickness. I've gone through kitchen knives and scissors but can't find anything thick enough.

Any ideas ??

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Old March 4, 2018, 01:47 PM   #2
Wyosmith
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If it were mine I would not use stainless. I's use a steel you can blue.

Silver front sights can be hard to see and align, and they are hard to use MOST of the time.
Black sights are WAY BETTER.
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Old March 4, 2018, 01:53 PM   #3
T. O'Heir
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Kitchen knives and scissors would be too hard. Measure the width and go buy an SS screw or bolt. Screws and bolts are a lot softer and can be filed.
Like Wyosmith says, SS sights, or any sight on polished SS, will disappear in sunlight. And the front sight must match the height of the groove.
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Old March 4, 2018, 02:10 PM   #4
arquebus357
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Ahhh hardware. I'm off to Lowes to see what I can find. A large washer ??

The sight will be the same height as S&W's front sight measured from the top of the bore. If I had the proper equipment I would cut a dovetail and use a black aftermarket sight. This stainless steel revolver came with a SS front sight so I see no problem using SS for a replacement. I'm not really a shooter so I don't much care about the practicality. I do shoot a Ruger Vaquero sometimes with SS sights and they seem ok to me.

Thanks for the help. I wasn't thinking hardware ...DUH
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Old March 4, 2018, 09:09 PM   #5
Dfariswheel
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If you can't find a suitable piece locally, there's some good online sources for small quantities of stainless stock:

http://www.onlinemetals.com/merchant...ep=2&top_cat=1

https://www.mcmaster.com/#standard-s...heets/=1btwvvh

https://www.boltdepot.com/Washers.aspx?nv=l
Email and they can tell you the thicknesses of the washers. Most front sights are about 1/10 inch thick. Measure the old sight.
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Old March 5, 2018, 07:48 AM   #6
arquebus357
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Thanks

If I cant find what I need at my local Fastenal, I have some more sources/
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Old March 5, 2018, 07:51 AM   #7
David R
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I can mail you a piece of 1/8" stainless 304. Free.

David

Sent from my Pixel 2 using Tapatalk
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Old March 6, 2018, 11:00 PM   #8
arquebus357
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Thanks but I already got some thick 2" diameter stainless steel washers from my local Grainger store. The new sight is the most difficult part of this modification. I really want it to look right.
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Old March 13, 2018, 03:53 PM   #9
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Silver brazed the new front sight in today. I am very pleased with the looks of the rounded barrel top. Sorry about the crappy photo. I'm not good at staging as you can see. I don't know what grip to use. Those are a spare pair.

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Old March 13, 2018, 08:57 PM   #10
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Looks like a nice job on that sight, nice job all the way around.
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Old March 20, 2018, 10:29 AM   #11
4V50 Gary
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Field test time.
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Old March 21, 2018, 02:35 PM   #12
arquebus357
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Yes. field test time. I've only tested with .38 spl cases with primers but no powder or bullets just to make sure it functions properly. All hammer strikes were well centered. I never liked these grips on any of my other K frames, but I think they look fine on this one

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Old March 21, 2018, 04:59 PM   #13
Hanshi
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Get some black paint for that front sight; that will help your shooting. Nice revolver, I have one with a 3" tube and love it.
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Old March 22, 2018, 11:55 AM   #14
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Nice work.

Should you change your mind about the site color, there is cold bluing available for stainless. It's really more charcoal gray than black but would improve sight contrast. Mask off the barrel with rubber tape and use one of the Badger airbrush style abrasive blasters to get a good matte surface on the sight before applying the stainless cold blue. Masking is advisable for that as well. I use liquid asphaltum engraver's etch resist from an art store for that kind of masking.
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Old March 22, 2018, 07:14 PM   #15
arquebus357
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Thanks but the 56% silver brazing filler will not respond to bluing so I would have a silver line around the bottom of the sight.
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Old March 22, 2018, 07:34 PM   #16
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Brownells used to sell a blacking agent for silver solder. I don't know if it's still there or not. But an alternative is Cerakote or one of the other paint-on finishes.
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Old March 22, 2018, 09:17 PM   #17
arquebus357
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The filler I used was not silver solder. Silver solder has maybe 4% silver and is worked at 400/500 degrees F. I used a 56% Silver Brazing filler (expensive) worked at 1200 degrees F.

I'm not a fan of painted firearms I don't care who does the work. I can understand why someone might like the fact that the firearm does not need to be disassembled to paint it. Actually you can Cerakote a loaded gun.

Hahaha

Thanks for your interest.
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Old March 24, 2018, 10:14 AM   #18
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arguebus357, I think you did a very nice job on your pistol. I too dislike paint on guns, paint on my house, tractors and barn is OK but not on my guns.
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Old March 24, 2018, 12:05 PM   #19
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That turned out nice. I really like how a three inch barrel handles on a revolver.
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Old March 25, 2018, 06:57 AM   #20
arquebus357
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^^^^^^

Yep, I agree. These 64's with the heavy barrel and small lightweight 38 spl. cylinder are quite nose heavy. It's surprising how much difference 1" of barrel makes.
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Old March 25, 2018, 09:22 PM   #21
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Arquebus357,

I believe you are referring to what is usually called silver-bearing solder (2-4%), which is technically a soft solder with conventional lead or tin-base. Silver solder, though not a technically correct term, has long been an abbreviation of "silver hard solder" or brazing alloy, and that is what Brownells used to sell its blacking material for. I am guessing you use Harris Safety-silv 56 or a copy of it. I use that and their 45T product. All good stuff.

Here's one for pure silver that may work, but I would contact the maker before trying it. This is another option.

I agree with you both about the 3" barrel. It's my favorite compromise between compactness and shootability. I've never really been able to get a snub-nose to print well, but a 3" will let me shoot the ten ring out of a 25-yard target. The difference is surprising.
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