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    Legacy Member Ms15710's Avatar
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    Front sight caps - were these ever removed by soldiers?

    Hi all,

    Just something that I am curious about.

    As I understand, M1icon rifles were shipped with a seal over the front sight screw, but around mid-1943 or so, this practice was stopped.

    My question first is, for what particular reason was this done? Did the armories not want soldiers adjusting the front sights?

    And secondly, if possible in the field, were they removed by soldiers? If so, was it a common phenomenon? Or did most leave them intact?

    Thank you kindly.

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    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ms15710 View Post
    M1icon rifles were shipped with a seal over the front sight screw, but around mid-1943 or so, this practice was stopped.
    From what I understand, after the change of the round firing pin it was the first change made. It was impossible to access the front sight screw so it was ordered removed by Ordnance. The ones you find intact are usually the Lend Lease rifles as they saw little actual use. Yes, the actual shape of the screw was soon changed to exclude the use of this part.
    Regards, Jim

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    Contributing Member Mark in Rochester's Avatar
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    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
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    I've seen one of those...
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    Contributing Member Bob Seijas's Avatar
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    Seal

    John Garandicon's design intended that all adjustment be made on the rear sight, period. Moving the front sight should have been unnecessary, so access was restricted.
    Real men measure once and cut.

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    Contributing Member Ovidio's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Seijasicon View Post
    John Garandicon's design intended that all adjustment be made on the rear sight, period. Moving the front sight should have been unnecessary, so access was restricted.
    When I read the question from Michael, I was a bit surprised in fact. With that wonderful rear sight, why would anyone need to move the front one?
    34a cp., btg. Susa, 3° rgt. Alpini

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    Contributing Member fjruple's Avatar
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    I believe it had something to do with the mechanical zero of the front sight and base and the gas cylinder especially if it was swapped out to another M1icon rifle. They did not want to have to send the rifle back to corp level or depot level to be mechanically zeroed. The ordnance folks want to push that function to lowest organizational level and get the rifle back to the folks that needed them quickly.

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    Contributing Member Bob Seijas's Avatar
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    GIs were a nutty bunch... for many the motto was "If it ain't broke, fix it 'til it is." LOL
    Real men measure once and cut.

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    Contributing Member ssgross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ovidio View Post
    why would anyone need to move the front one?
    well, in addition to mechanical correction for tolerances, not everyone's eyes see the same sight picture. To prove this, I've done the following experiment. 1) zero a rifle perfectly at 100yds, and shoot a nice tight group in the X ring off the bench as a lefty shooter. Then, being and ambidextrous shooter who favors lefty, I switch to righty and shoot an equally tight group, 2-3 MOA right and slightly high. I've also been shooting with a friend (righty). We will both shoot very nice groups, but if I zeroed the rifle and shot out the x ring off the bench, he shoots out the target on the top right edge of the aiming black.

    Starting with mechanical zero, and hitting the center of the target, is a luxury not everyone can do. And, like others have said, it isn't necessary to have as long as its acceptable that any shooter's zero will be within +- a few clicks of mechanical - like with such a good rear sight as Garandicon's. Mechanical zero don't get us zero'd in practice either - even holding all other variables fixed. Depending on the bullet, spin drift can be quite noticeable - 150gr flat base gives a ballpark of ~.75MOA at 100yds. Like most, I like zeroing the rear at mechanical center, and play with the front sight - makes it easy to return the rear to zero - and I'm grateful Garand put that screw in there
    Last edited by ssgross; 05-09-2022 at 11:29 AM.

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    Legacy Member RCS's Avatar
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    front sight seal installation tool

    Here is a photo from the Rock island Arsenal Shop Manual 1943 showing the tool used to install the front sight seal. This tool if found today would be quite rare !

    Later the wide base gas cylinder and deleted front sight seal provided additional adjustment

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