Replacing bead front sight on a Winchester Model 12?

Discussion in 'Gunsmithing' started by Vigilant, Sep 14, 2020.

  1. Vigilant

    Vigilant

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    Picked a Model 12 that unfortunately was cut down to a riot. Did some checking and there is no pedestal under the bead sight. Looks like it's threaded directly into the barrel, which appears much too thin to thread and screw a bead into it. Is there any way to mount a bead, or should I just give up on this barrel?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. SargeMO

    SargeMO

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    The Browning A5 and Winchester Model 12 use a metric threaded 3-50 front bead, though I have seen referenced as 3-56 in some cases. Find the Brownells Shotgun parts page and work it out from there.
     

  3. SargeMO

    SargeMO

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  4. ede

    ede

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    There are stick on FO sights if you don't care about it being or looking original.
     
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  5. Vigilant

    Vigilant

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    Thanks for your help. I wish I had the rest of the barrel, but no such luck. From the few photos of the muzzle I found, once again the metal in my opinion is not nearly thick enough to accept threads.
     
  6. Vigilant

    Vigilant

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    Thanks for your help. I have seen the fiber optic snap-on sights, but from what I have read they still require a bead sight behind them to keep the snap-on sight from migrating toward the muzzle.
     
  7. SargeMO

    SargeMO

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    I have some time and will try to respond in more detail.

    I mentioned the factory bead size earlier; but if the barrel was shortened, drilled and rethreaded it is whatever size the owner chose at that time. First, make sure the hole is actually threaded. If so you may have to try several sizes of beads to see what fits.

    The threaded shank of shotgun beads are necessarily over-length, to accommodate a wide range of barrel and or rib thickness. When you install one (use blue thread locker) there will always be part of that shank protruding into the bore. You can't shoot it like that, so the shank must be sanded/stoned down until it blends with the surface of the bore.

    This would seem to be the perfect time to grab the Dremel with a sanding drum, right? Yes and no. Those drums come in 60 grit which is the last thing you want in your shotgun bore.

    If you have a very steady hand and the finest grit drum, you can work the shank of the bead almost down flush with the bore.

    Once there I wrap a dowel with 400 Wet or Dry and work until I can just feel the remaining shank with my finger.

    Then I wrap the dowel with 800 or 1000 grit auto body paper and finish the job. Try your best not to let the abrasives contact the bore beyond a half inch area around the shank of the bead, The bore must remain perfectly round or you're going to get wonky patterns.
     
  8. ede

    ede

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    I've got several stick on sights. Just peel and stick no bead required.
     
  9. Vigilant

    Vigilant

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    Never heard of stick-on sights. Can you give me a source?
     
  10. ede

    ede

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    DAW9347 likes this.
  11. DAW9347

    DAW9347 Patron Life NRA Member

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    I'm pretty much in agreement with Post #7. Sorta funny how some informative posts disappear in a nasty, vindictive, manner. :duel:

    I've never had much luck with stick-on sights. Maybe they have better adhesives these days, but I rather go with those that are screwed into place with both front and center beads every time, seems they don't shoot off very often. Maybe that bothers some folks. :crazy:

    From my extensive experience, the beads with the #3-56 threads are much more common and available from suppliers with that thread style, but I guess they can't be recommended here.
     
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  12. DAW9347

    DAW9347 Patron Life NRA Member

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  13. ede

    ede

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    Works fine on my non ribbed barrels, I have them on a .410 and a 20GA.
     
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  14. DAW9347

    DAW9347 Patron Life NRA Member

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    The picture deferred to, showed a smooth flat rib, so I was just wondering how that would work with a rib that has lines cut into it's length to prevent glare.
    I do know that "stick-on" adhesives have come a long way these days, and what you point out does sorta prove that.