Monday, March 16, 2015

Williams FP-RU-77 sight installation on a Ruger 77/357 : or : NECG sight need not apply....wouldn't mind trying a Skinner though.


Most Ruger rifles leave something to be desired in sights, mostly their rear sights. It's the same with other "field" type rifles such as remington 700's and such. I've never been able to shoot well with the rear notch type sight as it does not offer the accuracy I am looking for. Now I can hit stuff with the notch sight but its not what I prefer....kind of like Tom selleck's character from Quigley down under...."I said I never had much use for one. Never said I didn't know how to use it". Anyways I went on a search for a rear sight for this 77/357 as the flip up notch rear wasted sight radius and does not allow for easy adjustment. Now NECG does make a "drop in" rear sight but they wanted too much for the dang thing and it looks butt ugly, and this is coming from a guy that thinks Mosin Nagants are beautiful. That and you give up your ability to mount a scope if you ever wanted to put one on for whatever reason without loosing your zero. Skinner sights makes a lovely replacement and is easily adjustable, you retain the factory sight radius though.  My solution was to find and install a FP-RU 77 rear sight on my receiver. FP=Foolproof...except these 77/357 receivers are not drilled from the factory so we'll have to do it ourselves. No worries, we have the technology!

123 blocks, hold downs and brass shims are used. Receiver only needs to be flat since we are drilling one hole at a time.

I'll be drilling the receiver on my Bridgeport mill, the cast stainless receiver is much softer than I anticipated. This made things a lot easier as far as tapping and drilling went. My first problem was finding a way to mount the receiver level in on the mill table, two 123 blocks were used under the receiver. A pair of hold downs and brass shims to keep the receiver from getting scratched were also utilized. The 77/357 receiver has a few high spots that you need to be aware of so you are sure the frame is level. The sharpie lines you can see are my guides as I free drill the 1st hole, making sure to not get into the bottom of the reciever just below the raceway. My goal was to be just a few thousandths above it and the first hole is drilled all the way through and tapped. I reversed the drill bit in the chuck while setting up so I got a accurate measurement as to where the hole needed to be.
Side view of set up.

Lots of magic tap is used while drilling the hole....I have to say I was a little nervous in drilling as I only had one chance to get it right. A #31 drill bit was used to tap the hole for the 6-48 threads.



First hole drilled, now since I don't have a fancy jig for hole spacing  I'll remove the receiver and tap the first hole. At that point I will install the sight, make sure it is level and then go off of that for the second hole using the tap installed in the chuck to make sure the base is where I want it for the second hole.



Tiny tap handle with tiny tap! 6-48 tap shown. A taper tap was used although a bottoming or plug tap is shown.


Here is where I messed up..as in I forgot to take pictures...through the magic of the internet I will just skip the the sight base installed with the stock already inletted (easily done). The stock needed trimmed down about 1/4" to allow the sight to sit as low as possible. The stock being solid in this area took the modification easily. Once both holes were drilled and tapped I cleaned them up with a file on the inside to break the hanging chips away and stoned the outside lightly after tapping it off so as not to scratch the receiver. This ensures the base will mount flush. When tapping it is important that the tap is square with the receiver, lots of tap magic is used again and chips are cleared away very often. After we are done with tapping we clean up the receiver with brake cleaner and a air hose, making sure all the chips are gone. Then we install the sight, oil up the parts that need it and we're ready for the range!




Sight installed, everything is level and ready for the range! I can still install a scope on the 2nd rear mounting area and have my irons as a back up! looks a lot better than I thought it would. 





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