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A friend obtained a used Springfield Armory 1911. It had been equipped with one of the full length sight ribs which had been removed, leaving only screw holes, no sights at all. I ordered a set of Colt fixed front and rear sights. The front is the "stake in" variety but I can't see how to stake it, it's not as if one could just stick a punch in there. Does it require some special tool? The tenon was a very tight fit in the slide and I coated it with JB Weld before pressing in but I just see no way to actually stake it.
 

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. . . I ordered a set of Colt fixed front and rear sights. The front is the "stake in" variety but I can't see how to stake it, it's not as if one could just stick a punch in there. Does it require some special tool?
Yes, a special tool is required to properly stake a 1911 front sight that has a tenon although other methods of securing the sight have been used. Brownell's carries the staking tool but I'm not sure if it would be less expensive to have a gunsmith do the job for you. You could contact Brownell's customer service and get their advice.
 

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Just my opinion, but, if you're going to a gunsmith anyway, I think you'd be wise to have the gunsmith cut a dovetail for front sights. Many 1911's have that now, and it allows changing the front sight more easily if you need a different one.
 

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<o:smarttagtype namespaceuri="urn:schemas-microsoft-com<img src=" images="" smilies="" redface.gif="" border="0" alt="" title="Embarrassment" smilieid="3" class="inlineimg"></o:smarttagtype>You’re going to need a gunsmith or to be handy because you got the wrong sight. The Colts have two different sight tenon diameters, military (small) and Goldcup (large) and the Springfield uses one that is in between. If your Colt fit in, then it is the small one. I put one of those on a Springfield one time, was even able to use my staking tool to get it to stay put, but it was weak and eventually broke off. No SA size tenons were available for that sight style, so I had to get one with the oversize Colt Goldcup tenon, then file it down with a flat file that has a dead edge. Bunch of work, but it solved the problem.

Breakage and flying off is why a lot of custom smiths used to silver solder front sights onto the slide. The old cadmium bearing sliver solders flowed a treat. The modern ones are a little harder to get a good thin bond line with, and the heat is high enough that you need to refinish the slide afterward.
 
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