Peep Sight on flintlock?

Discussion in 'Flintlock Rifles' started by Sparkitoff, Jan 2, 2020.

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  1. Jan 2, 2020 #1

    Sparkitoff

    Sparkitoff

    Sparkitoff

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    I have a custom flintlock that is not HC. It is a take on an English Sporting Rifle that I use for hunting. The rear sight is an open blade but adjustable. The rifle fell and the rear sight screw broke. I used this as an excuse to send the rifle to my favorite rifle-maker. He is doing some work on it and suggested a rear peep sight. I recently got the ol' T/C branded adjustable peep sight and my riflesmith says it will work on the tang of this rifle by the addition of one screw. Of course, the rear sight could be put back on and the peep taken off within a few minutes if desired. The peep might even remain sighted-in, but I doubt the rear sight would. Anyway, for a hunting rifle that I am not trying in any way to be HC with, what do you say about putting a peep sight on it?
     
  2. Jan 2, 2020 #2

    Griz44Mag

    Griz44Mag

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    I got no issue with that. I put a rear peep on my Pedersoli Frontier .54 Flint
    Pretty dang accurate too!
     
  3. Jan 2, 2020 #3

    Rifleman1776

    Rifleman1776

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    The Johnson sight is perfect for what you describe. I have one on my Little Fella rifle built by Dave Persons. He highly modified the sight but it is great.
     
  4. Jan 2, 2020 #4

    Stubert

    Stubert

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    I have a T/C hunter peep on my .54 for 30 yrs. those sights are becoming very pricey and hard to find.
     
  5. Jan 2, 2020 #5

    EC121

    EC121

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    For hunting the state sight regs., if any, are all that matter.
     
  6. Jan 2, 2020 #6

    Grimord

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    I have had to put peep sites on several of my guns so that I can still shoot them with my old eyes. If I had to have only the open sights, I would not be able to hunt squirrels and rabbits any more, and i dearly love spending time in the woods hunting them.
     
  7. Jan 3, 2020 #7

    Spikebuck

    Spikebuck

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    It is not uncommon to have a peep on a flintlock. There are numerous posts that have discussed the topic here over the years. Peep sights have been around since well before the invention of the flintlock, so while probably not all that common back in the day, they did exist.

    Here's the Johnson Peep on a fullstock flint Hawken I built. I kind of like a rear peep on a traditional gun that looks more traditional. I use the Williams Twilight Apertures.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Jan 3, 2020 #8

    sussexmuzllodr

    sussexmuzllodr

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    I solved my sight in problems by asking the buck to wait a minute while I put on my Specks....
    SM
     
  9. Jan 3, 2020 #9

    Griz44Mag

    Griz44Mag

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    It appears that the sight is mounted via dovetail. The only Johnson sights I could find are mounted with screws. Where did you get the sight?
     
  10. Jan 3, 2020 #10

    EC121

    EC121

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    The peep sight is screwed to the dovetail base.
     
  11. Jan 3, 2020 #11

    Frank Horrigan

    Frank Horrigan

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    I have one on my.... Bastard thing of a rifle. Apparently it’s sighted in for 125 yards and 250 yards.
     
  12. Jan 3, 2020 #12

    tenngun

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    I’m a dyed in the capote traditionalist. We can’t have what they had back then but we should try to get as close as we can afford.
    That said....
    1) it’s your gun, you can do what you want with it.
    2) the realities of life in the here and now have to be lived with. If you need, or at the least are most comfortable with a peep put it on, it’s no different then glasses ( something few wore in the old days).
    3) this is a sport, or a hobby, we gots to have our fun. Put a peep on it and join me in a traditional camp, your welcome any day of the week and twice on Sunday.
    I have enough beams in my eyes, I haven’t the time to worry about your motes.
    Make good smoke:thumb:
     
  13. Jan 3, 2020 #13

    Darkhorse

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    I've always had excellent eyesight and really loved shooting iron sights. Then 3 or 4 years ago the rear sight suddenly got real blurry and I couldn't shoot iron sights anymore. This happened about the same time I was diagnosed with Diabetes. Fortunately I had anticipated this and had some ideas about a simple peep sight.
    I made one of these for each of my rifles and it restored my ability to hit with open sights.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. Jan 3, 2020 #14

    rusticbob

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    Darkhorse, I am interested in your homemade peep sight. It looks like something I might need. Care to elaborate? What is it made of? How is it attached? More pictures would be great.
     
  15. Jan 3, 2020 #15

    Loyalist Dave

    Loyalist Dave

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    Crossbows of the 17th century often had peep sights, so...,
    A few things about peeps...they increase the level of light that is needed to see the target. So "at first light" with an open, iron set you might be able to see the target and the sights and shoot..., when you might need an additional 15 minutes of time to pass before you have enough light for the peep. You might have to stop 15 minutes earlier in the evening with the peep. The peep acts as a primitive lens, and as it reduces the light coming into the eye, you need more light overall to see through it.

    LD
     
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  16. Jan 3, 2020 #16

    Spikebuck

    Spikebuck

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    I use different hole size apertures. For sighting in at the range, I'll use a .093 hole. For hunting I use .125 and I can see well to shoot from 1/2 hour before sunrise to 1/2 hour after sunset, which is our legal hours in MN. In my range testing I found that my accuracy does start to degrade out past 75 yards if I jump to a .150 hole, but around here, that's a long shot and frankly at 100 yards, the .150 still provides "minute of deer" level accuracy. So the key, IMO, to hunting with peeps is to NOT use the tiny holed apertures that a target guy might use at the range...increase the hole size to let in enough light. Since the "auto-centering" of the front sight in the peep hole is related to the diameter of the pupil, in lower light conditions with dilated pupils, you still get the auto-centering to a large degree.
     
  17. Jan 3, 2020 #17

    Loyalist Dave

    Loyalist Dave

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    Ah but... I know for a fact that there is a difference between what one gets at the range which are often open areas oriented with the targets north of the shooters, vs. what one gets in a southern exposed meadow with high trees surrounding..., to what one gets in a wooded, northern slope, on a hill side...when it comes to peep sights, or open iron sights.

    I've been able to see my target, while it's still "legal shooting time" as it's not 30 minutes past sundown, while hunting in said woodlot on a northern side of a hill ..., yet...when looking through the sights, the target disappeared. Opened both eyes and looked over the top of the peep sight, target was still standing there at 40 yards. Lower head and look, nope, raise head yep still there, lower head nope... and my vision is 20/18. ;)

    Sure the opening makes a difference. At a point, depending on the person's eyes that opening will be too large to make what some would require for a precision shot. Might as well be using no rear sight in some of those cases....

    LD
     
  18. Jan 3, 2020 #18

    Spikebuck

    Spikebuck

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    Griz... it is a standard Johnson, but as the poster after you stated, the based is screwed into the sight. One could also solder it on.

    I started with a piece of flat steel I had and filed down a section to get it very thin. Since the dovetail would be located over the powder charge area I didn't want it to be any deeper than absolutely necessary.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I used two 4-40 x 1/4 flat head machine screws to secure it to the peep sight, which I had to drill and tap. A little filing to clean it up to remove the bit of the flat head that protruded down (as seen below) and done. If I were to do it again, I would probably reduce the width of the base and solder it on.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Because this was a Hawken with a hooked breech, I did have to have the sight mounted a tad further back than I would have liked so it wouldn't obstruct hinging the barrel up for removal, but it worked out OK. On a fixed breech I would have moved the peep toward the butt just a little more to be even closer to my eye.

    There's more pictures on page 6 of my Flickr album for this build, including cutting the barrel dovetail for the sight:

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/100435142@N08/albums/72157639906287386
     
    Last edited: Jan 3, 2020
  19. Jan 3, 2020 #19

    RiverRat

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    I am thinking about a Kibler kit and building a dedicated hunting rifle with a peep sight.
     
  20. Jan 3, 2020 #20

    Griz44Mag

    Griz44Mag

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    Very nice craftsmanship! That looks like a future project in the making.
    The sight is very attractive and goes well with the gun.
    The peeps go well with my old eyes. And it just so happens that I have a good assortment of 7/32 threaded apertures.
     

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