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Better sights for 627 .357 at 200+ yards - S&W adjustable front sight?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Revolvers' started by IMtheNRA, Aug 27, 2012.

  1. IMtheNRA

    IMtheNRA Well-Known Member

    I've been getting into longer-distance target shooting with my 627, which is a ton of fun!

    However, at 200 yards and beyond, I have to cover the entire target and target stand with the muzzle of the revolver. I have seen some pics of the S&W adjustable front sight and I was wondering if this is a more precise aiming option.

    Do you think it has enough elevation adjustment for 200 yards and beyond?

    Is this something that is an integral part of the barrel, or can it be installed to replace the standard front sight?

    And finally, I would want one with a very thin front sight blade, as the standard blade covers up too much of the target at a mere 100 yards... Is this sight available with blades of various width?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated! :)
  2. 19-3Ben

    19-3Ben Well-Known Member

    I don't think most handgun shooters think of the word "mere" when talking about shooting at 100 yards!!! You must be pretty darn good.
  3. MrBorland

    MrBorland Moderator

  4. IMtheNRA

    IMtheNRA Well-Known Member

    Haha! No, I'm not that good. I recently started shooting from a sandbag, on a bench. With such a stable platform, 100 yards is MUCH more easy than it sounds. Give it a shot, it is a blast! :)
  5. S&Wfan

    S&Wfan Well-Known Member

    Sounds like you are fine-tuning your handgun mechanics the right way . . . and thus demystifying the "handguns aren't accurate" myth. Good for you!!!

    S&W indeed did offer 4-way adjustable front sights in past years for their revolvers to be used in long-range competition (silhouette). I suspect that the shortest barrel where it was offered was a 6" tube. I've seen them on 686 revolvers as well as Model 29 and 629 models. I suspect they were probably offered too on 627 models too.

    The front sight had a round little wheel with four numbers on it, and turning the wheel raised/lowered the sight to the next position. Each position was adjusted by the shooter via an allenwrench turned screw . . . to perfectly dial in the sight for specific ranges. Thus, the silhouette competitor used one of those settings for 200 meter targets!

    I've got a 1989-made Model 29-5 (.44 magnum) with a 6" barrel that came with the silhouette front sight, and nobody told that revolver that one couldn't hit milk jugs at 200 yards consistently! LOL

    It has been my deer hunting firearm of choice for many years now, taking scores of deer during the years.

    BTW, here's one I just googled and found on the Guns America site . . . on a 6" barrelled M627:

  6. S&Wfan

    S&Wfan Well-Known Member

    PS: I can't show you my front sight on my 29-5, for I carefully removed it and stored it around 2000 and drilled and tapped the topstrap to accept a first generation Bushnell Holosight. It's never lost its zero, and on top of the Holosight is a trajectory/windage chart out to about 200 yards.

    The holosight transformed a very, very accurate revolver into a really fast-to-acquire target deer and hog machine.

    Last season, removing that front sight to keep the holster noise at zero allowed me to bag this good-sized coyote with it. It had been a very slow morning but, as is my custom, I took 30 minutes coming down a 12' ladder stand and it paid off. Yep, slowly step down one rung and wait, etc.

    This coyote was slipping through the area behind me, and as sharp-eyed as it is, it didn't see me since I was blocked by the tree and motionless. I very slowly drew the M29 and aimed, only moving when it was blocked by a tree from seeing my hand.

    He got to a little clear spot 40 yards from my stand and I planted him right in his tracks, shooting with my fully extended one-hand as I held onto the stand with the other hand.


    To me, this was as special of a time with my M29 as a few other mornings in the deer woods with that wonderful revolver, such as:

    - Harvesting THREE deer in very rapid succession (TWICE, once in a clear cut and the other in a thick bottom) . . . and dropping the second of the three clear cut ones doing a full run, broadside, at 60 yards! She hit the ground like a light switch was flipped and never moved.

    - Harvesting a rare, piebald whitetail buck in '05 in a very, very thick area as he tried to slip by.

    Lots of other fond memories of this revolver and lots of harvested whitetails. I haven't lost one either, since going to the 300 grain bullet I've been using since about 2000.

    Ah, but I digress . . . I'm getting excited about this coming deer season just thinking about it with my Model 29-5.

    Your 627 could be fun like that too!
  7. BCRider

    BCRider Well-Known Member

    Sounds like fun to push things that far out.

    First off are you using .357Mag rounds or .38Spl?

    My "go to" online resource for this sort of stuff is the external ballistics calculator at the Hornady web site. For a gun set to zero at 50 yards you need to hold over by 50 inches to hit at 200. On a gun with a 6 inch barrel and another 2.5 inches to the rear sight my quick calculation suggests that you only need to hold the top of the front blade .178 over the target. This being based on .357Mag rounds using 158gn bullets with a ballistics coefficient of around .159 and exiting the barrel at 1100 fps.

    Things that will mess this up are using hollow points with a poor BC or using rounds with lower muzzle velocities or using notably lighter bullets which slow down faster than heavy bullets.

    If you wanted to set up the gun with a rear blade which zeros at 50 yards and then cut and paint fill lines on the back vertical face of your front partridge style sight then to hit at shorter distances you'd need to "6 o'clock" the target by only a hair at 25 yards (0.2 inches actually) and only slightly more at 15 yards.

    Check it out and input your own gun's measurement for front sight height from the bore axis at the Hornady web site. It's great fun.
  8. X-Rap

    X-Rap Well-Known Member

    My 29 Classic has changeable front inserts that I believe can be had in different heights and colors. Is the front sight on the 627 removable? (held in by a spring)
  9. 9mmepiphany

    9mmepiphany Moderator

    This isn't the most optimized technique

    As MrBorland posted, the correct way is to hold the front sight blade high in the rear notch and place your desired POI atop the blade

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