Dovetail sight issue

Discussion in 'General Firearms Discussion' started by handcannon, May 1, 2017.

  1. handcannon

    handcannon Member

    Hey guys just got a new pistol and the rear dovetail sight is lose. What's the best way to fix this? I figured maybe notching the bottom with a punch or chisel but wanted to get a few opinions on it before I go hammering on the thing.
  2. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    Traditionally, you'd use a punch to dimple the dovetail. If it's really bad, a shim.

    What gun are you working on?

    Peace favor your sword,

  3. handcannon

    handcannon Member

    Tokarev m57 and I can move it with my thumb. Would I dimple the bottom or the sides where it meets the slide?
  4. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    The Zastava-made, Tok-based, pistols have a reputation for lose rear sights. Apparently most people who experience this issue end up having to get factory service.

    They also have a reputation for shooting low.

    Peace favor your sword,
    Last edited: May 1, 2017
  5. duster066

    duster066 Supporting Member

    Are they worth anything? If so get pro help. If not you might try moving the metal with a highly polished hammer and die rig. Polish the die surface that will contact the slide then gently rap the die with a hammer. You don't have to smack it real hard to move steel, and you'll only need to move it a few thousandths. Then use a punch as you've considered above to raise the dove tail floor a few thous. My 1899 dated Winchester had the mag tube hanger dove tail pulled out of the barrel. Much of the barrel material was gone, and the rest was displaced. I moved the steel back into place with the above method, bought a new mag tube hanger, and it twists in tight again. Yes twists in. I think someone didn't know that's how they are supposed to be removed and installed on that old rifle, and by pounding it out is how it was ruined. I used a dab of liquid steel to fill any voids, and it works good now.

    Warning: There is a risk the hardened steel in the dove tail area may crack. Use this method at your own risk.
  6. mr_flintstone

    mr_flintstone Supporting Member

    I have one of the Zastava Toks, and like said above, the loose sight issue is a real problem. Take a really close look (maybe even use a magnifying glass) to determine if the sight is too thin (top to bottom), too narrow (front to back), or both.

    If the width is good, Take a sharp punch, and make two or three equally spaced divots down each long side .

    If the thickness is good, but the width is too narrow, you might use loctite or soft solder.

    If both dimensions are off, then you might try cutting a thin shim of aluminum, wrapping the sight base, and try reinserting. Be careful that the shim doesn't make it too thick.

    It all depends on how it's loose, and how loose it is. I finally gave up on fixing mine, and ordered a new sight.
  7. duster066

    duster066 Supporting Member

    Shim stock is available from any well stocked auto parts store. It's cheap and one roll will last most forever. I have a roll of brass I've been work on for 30 years. 90% of the roll is still there.;)
  8. handcannon

    handcannon Member

    It's loose about 1/8 to the left and right of center then gets to tight to push any further with my fingers. Front to back has just a hair of movement but pretty tight. There is a imperfection in the slide is this normal and the direction I should remove it? Or is it possibly a reason it's loose. I'll try to post a picture real quick
  9. mr_flintstone

    mr_flintstone Supporting Member

    I could be wrong, but I'll tell you what it looks like to me.

    Lots of dovetail sights have a taper, and are designed to be removed from left to right (looking at it from the rear). It looks like someone may have tried to force the wider end (right side) of the sight into the narrow end (left side) of the slide, and deformed the channel. Or, they may have simply put the sight in from the left hand side and more or less removed the taper from the channel. That may be why the sight is now loose when inserted.
  10. planosteve

    planosteve Lifetime Supporter

    Cheap commie guns. :p
  11. undeRGRound

    undeRGRound ROLL wif Da MOLE! Supporting Member

    Looks a bit fuggered up... :confused:

    Nice Jammies, "dood" :rofl:



    U been here a while, but I could not find my usual "welcome" ;)
  12. ajole

    ajole Supporting Member

    NE Utah
    I'd get it where I want it, hit it with some clear silicon like Permatex, squished in real good, and call it done.

    You guys and your "do stuff right" BS...:p