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Discussion Starter #1
MOS, modular optics systems seem to suddenly be the rage for reflex red dot pistol sights. This is unfortunate for my task as all of the gun shops have red dots but no mounting bases.....because the MOS systems don't use them. Those slides are already machined drilled and threaded to accept the red dots.

I can order a Glock base at Amazon for $15, black anodized aluminum, drilled and threaded for some of the sights. The problem is...until you get a sight and base you can't exactly figure out how to best mount it to a P22 which of course has absolutely no rear sight options. Then there is the thin zinc slide to deal with.

What i will need to do is fasten a base of some kind to the slide in some manner. Either glue one on or mount it with screws that extend through the slide and into the steel breech block. That is a bit tricky too until you have a mount in hand so that you can avoid the existing mounting holes while adapting the base to the P22. Optimally glue would be great....no drilling of the slide. Place the base in a bed of cement, square it up and let it cure.

To that concept I have taken a 2" piece of P22 slide and JB Welded a 1"W x 1 1/2"L piece of aluminum to the top of it. Onto that I have Welded three nickels which have a total weight of 15 grams...same as a light red dot. Tomorrow I will see just how tough it is. Will it hold up to repeated poundings to simulate a closing slide? Total weight appx 25 grams. 1 oz = 29 grams.

In another experiment I have drilled and threaded several holes in an old breech block at likely looking spots. The thickest area is 4.8mm, there is a wing on one side that is 4.12mm and the other side is 2.4mm thick. Actually from tests in tightening down the M3 screws...even the thin side seems pretty strong. Brother In Arms had posted that for a M3 screw, there is no advantage to material thicker than 4.5mm.

To keep everything in align the breech block should be examined for likely spots. Then mounted into the slide and locked in place with the rear roll pin. The bottom of the breech block can then be drilled all the way through including the slide. The breech block holes then get threaded while the hole through the slide gets enlarged just a bit. This all works well enough and appears to be stronger than necessary for holding a mounting plate in place.

The unknown at this point is...where are the mounting holes for the sight on the base. You can't interfere with those locations while fastening the mount to the slide/breech block. Since I don't have a mount at this point I went ahead and mounted a 1" W x 1 3/4"L piece of aluminum flat bar using two convenient spots....one of which I believe will be right in the wrong spot. But, it's an old piece of a slide so it doesn't matter. The point of all this practice. What's one more hole in this ugly slide.



A number of locations lend themselves to drilling and threading. Drill from the bottom up. This many machine screws won't be necessary. The second screw from the left is going to be in a bad location regarding the pre-drilled base mounts and will likely have to be moved forward to another location.



Circular mold marks on the bottom of the breech block aid in locating drill points.



This is a part of an old slide that was subjected to various tests in acid to see how it would hold up. I forget why we wanted to know. Zinc alloy vs aluminum???? So, great piece to have to experiment on. The short piece has the JB Weld glued on parts and is resting in a vise at present. The center had already been filled with JB for a previous project.



And here is an aluminum plate fastened tightly to the slide. Obviously flat head screws will be required, set flush with the top of the base. Lowes had those but in M4 only which appeared to be a bit too large for this project.

While tightening the top plate down I noticed that the breech block is pulled upward a small amount, so I will relocate the right side screw forward and where there is a rail to support the top. This should provide a more stable mount too. The plate above is located so that it won't interfere with the existing rear sight. If I were to lose the rear sight the mounting plate/red dot could sit further rearward. 1917
 

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Pretty handy fellow you are. Good luck with the experiment. I am wondering how the additional weight of the mount and the red dot are going to effect cycling. Please keep us posted.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
This isn't a new idea. I drew up a schematic for this concept back in about 2005. Back then there weren't a lot of light red dot choices. J Point was the lightest. JPoint is still one of the lightest except they are called Shield now. Sig also makes what are called mini red dots also. These have been shrunk to less than 1" height and width....which means they fit small pistols. Walther actually offers a version of the PPS with a Shield red do already installed. These red dots are great for those of you that might not have ever tried one. Even holsters are available to accommodate them.

So back to weight. Years ago I glued nickels on the slide of a P22 and began shooting. No red dot, just a test to see what a P22 would cycle. At 43 grams the pistol was still reliably cycling. As everyone probably knows by now the p22 has a pretty heavy slide made of a cast zinc alloy. It is 29% heavier in weight than the aluminum slide on a Smith compact. And this weight means the P22 won't cycle some ammo....Winchester, Federal, some subsonic, CCI Quiets, etc. just don't have enough umph. But, plenty of commonly available ammo, CCI mini mags and Rem Golden Bullets are all plenty snappy and easily cycle the slide.

I am thinking an aluminum base (hard to find info on the weight of one like the aluminum Glock MOS base) but the aluminum part I made weighs 10 grams before any holes are drilled. Heavy or light aluminum...I don't know the grade of it. What Lowes sells. 48" stick for $10. It is 1/8" thick or more by 1" width. So we have 10 oz in the mounting base and the small red dots are in the 14 gram weight. Is the weight of screws offset by holes that are drilled. Anyway, it seems the whole think can be kept under 30 grams which is apps 1 oz. Obviously if you could eliminate the base you would be adding 14 grams total. But the P22 is not built in any manner that makes this easy to do. weak zinc slide, tiny mim'd steel breech block and a well know problem with cracking slides which makes drilling holes in one a doubtful action. Testing will tell. What additional stress will be added to the thin slide when a red dot and base is clamped on. The metal at the top of the slide is very thin. On the other hand they can be pretty tough. I've tried to break off the thin portion on the right side by hand and it bends but won't break. It snaps back when pressure is released...I was surprised by that.

I'm going to attempt this experiment on my old 5" pistol. I have spare breech blocks for it. I do not have additional QD breech blocks which have several modifications that make it unique and it is no longer produced.

So, I think the weight of these additions are acceptable if light weight red dots and a light mount are used. Walther has shown no interest in an aluminum slide....this pistol is available presently at Marks Outdoors for $229 so I don't guess there is a log o room for constant updates. Makes me wonder why they built the QD model ( already discontinued) for something I have never heard anyone ask for. Aluminum slide designed to offer sight options Walther and do a better job of smoothing the front edge of the trigger bar ears.

At least this is a pistol you can play around with. I won't be drilling on my various steel PP pistols. Today I will bang the heck out of the aluminum base with 15 grams of nickels JB Welded to it. I will bang it on a steel anvil 1,000 times if it lasts that long....hard. With the glue hold. If so, forget all of this drilling.....just glue a base on, screw on the sight and go shooting. 1917
 

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Discussion Starter #4
https://www.shootingillustrated.com/articles/2019/2/26/review-walther-pps-m2-rmsc/

LInk to the PPS M2 with rmsc. Note that the slide has been cut, tapped and threaded for this type of sight. No base needed. On these sights some of them require that the sight be removed to access the battery and thin rubber gaskets are available to weather seal the base against the slide. Others work the same way but allow the battery to slide out the side or be installed from the top. Those are better options since removing the sight likely means re-zeroing. But this sure simplifies adding a red dot and is the future for adding these to a pistol. 1917
 

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Great work. I 4 Shield RMS red dots installed on 2 HD P's and 2 carry Q's. These four pistols have been to L&M for 'slide milling' to match the Walther factory mill job on the Q4's and Q5's.

The Shield is small and lightweight....the red dot is 'always' on and batteries are supposed to last 2 years or so.

The only down side to putting an optic on a P22 is, the optic will cost more than the gun.:eek: But hey, this project sounds like something I'd might do if I had a P22.

A while back, I picked up one of those adapter plates off Amazon to mount an optic to a 1911 via the rear sight dovetail. I did a little grinding and sanding on the bottom of the plate to get a better match to my PPQ 45. Then used some epoxy putty...laid the putty on a piece of wax paper on the counter, laid a piece of wax paper on top then used a board to presser er' flat. Wasn't quite flat/thin enough, so I used my rolling pin to roll it out a little thinner....must have been a 1/16" or so. Place that piece of flatten epoxy sheet on the bottom of the adapter plate and mounted the plate to the slide....used a c-clamp to apply just a little extra pressure toward the front of the plate to get er' nice and flat. OH, I sprayed the slide with 'pam' prior to mounting the plate.

After it was cured, I was able to remove the plate.....NO STICKY TO SLID'E. :D

So, that might be something you could consider, but don't use the PAM. :D.

However, I have no idea if you could find an adaptor plate that would fit the P22 dovetail.
 

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Been using a red dot on my P22 for several years. Just opted for the Walther bridge as a mount.



The utility of a red dot for me is basically range use as lasers seem far better for carry purposes. My daily carry and my woods gun both have auto-on laser grips that add no weight, bulk, complication, or interfere with operation or function.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
HHPIN I had one of those back in about '04. It worked very well, 10 round groups in 1/2" or less at 21'. But you have to remove it to field strip and then re-zero. I asked if anyone wanted it and sent it to someone in Arizona as I recall....this was 15 years ago. 1917
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
The JB Weld test failed miserably.....7 whacks onto a steel anvil and the aluminum flew off the slide. The JB stuck to the slide. I have go rilla glue on it at present and will test again. :p



fail!!!



The red dashed line is pretty close to where the Glock, 1911, Springfield, etc. mounting plates are drilled and threaded for small red dots. So, I had to move one of the mounting screws forward. No problem. Holds the base from rotating even better. Then I eyeballed drilling some additional holes just to see if that would lighten the part. It did. The 10 gm base is now 8 gms. Add a 14gm red dot and I still have a very light system. The screws pull down really tight. Perhaps they can be tightened too much for the zinc slide. Threadlocker will be necessary and a firm but not too firm mount. Unfortunately I can't find weights or dimensions for $15 parts like the one below and the gun shops aren't carrying them since peeps are going to the MOS system. 1917



My dimensions by taking a photo on the net, blowing it up until it fit a scale that I could measure. If I set the picture to 1" width the holes for mounting whatever red dot this fits are 3/4" from the rear of the sight. I have redrilled the mount to accommodate that plate and of course this required moving the right side screw forward. It is still screwed through a thick portion of the breech block. Hopefully I can find a similar mount that is made for the Shield compact red dot. I now know where to drill it to mount the base to the P22 slide. These are aluminum bases but some are apparently made of really strong aluminum and I don't know if that is heavier weight material than what I got at Lowes.



Ugly....but I could sure shoot straight with it.



10 round groups at 21'. Unfortunately I can not do this with open sights....P22 or all steel PP or PPK/s .22. Which is why I'm wanting to install a red dot...but not the contraption pictured above.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
The polymer Shield site is 14 gms and the aluminum site is 17 gms. One local shop has both but no mounts. Other shops have similar Trijicon dots. The polymer one is $299. I might get it, mount it to a remake of the contraption I've already built and give it a try until I can find a better mount. That means predrilled and anodized. I don't particularly want to have to remove the site to change the battery so I will have to look into that regarding the models they have. 1917
 

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HHPIN I had one of those back in about '04. It worked very well, 10 round groups in 1/2" or less at 21'. But you have to remove it to field strip and then re-zero. I asked if anyone wanted it and sent it to someone in Arizona as I recall....this was 15 years ago. 1917
When I recently added a PPQ, I also got a UM Tactical mount. Like the Walther, its a rail mounted bridge but it is a quick release, one piece, sturdy enough for centerfire rounds, allows use of the open sights, and it does return to zero when removed/replaced. Added benefit is that it also fits the P22 and UMT offers a holster that accepts any gun with the mount attached.
 

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Discussion Starter #11


One of the drawings for this concept from somewhere way back along the line. I could not figure out any other way to fasten a mounting plate. 1917

HHPIN, your set up looks far better than the oil barrel I had. It was cheap...but danged if I couldn't shoot straight with it. Which set me to wanting a red dot. I expect soon IDPA and Steel Shoots will have a separate category for red dots. They are faster than iron sites from all I read. 1917
 

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Instead of a flat bottom plate, you need the bottom to be concave, for more surface area contact.....like this one https://www.amazon.com/ARWIN-Mount-Adapter-Standard-Dovetail/dp/B07SLTHXNV/ref=sr_1_11?crid=OF3P2OTDLSOR&dchild=1&keywords=red+dot+adapter+mount+1911&qid=1584305114&sprefix=,aps,180&sr=8-11 I used one like this for my PPQ 45 experiment.....had to modify the bottom contour a little then used the epoxy putty for a contact patch from side to side. PLUS, the thing is held on with the little dovetail adapter.

Just food for thought.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
OK, the JB Weld test failed miserably. on the 7th whack the aluminum/nicklel piece flew off. The JB stayed tight on the slide....just let go of the smooth underside of the aluminum base. I will rough up the bottom of the aluminum, drill a few holes for the goop and test again this evening. I know there are all types of industrial fastner goop but I don't know anything about them.

Since I squeezed the parts together in a vise (lightly) the JB was very thin. I have no idea if it gets its strength from being thicker but the JB looks perfect on the slide....just let go of the aluminum. Would have been good for six shots but perhaps I am hitting much harder or not as hard as what a pistol would dish out. Sure though it would last longer than seven whacks. :p

It is presently back in the vise with a thick coating of Go Rilla Impact Super Glue. I'll see if that is any better. JB Weld on the slide, go rilla, then the aluminum base pressed into the glue. I have epoxy too but have never been impressed.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
500 hard whacks onto the top of the steel anvil didn't loosen the gorilla glue. The glue was between the JB Weld on the slide and the bare bottom of the Lowes aluminum piece. It appears this stuff works. I will give it another 500 whacks after my hand rests and I find some gloves to soften the blow.

I think I will next whack the slide portion with the mount on it. First I need to glue on three nickels to act as the weight of the sight.

And finished. 500 more whacks on the short piece of slide with 15 gms of nickels and JB + Gorilla impact resistant.. Hit 700 times in one direction and 300 in the other. Still tight. Likewise the screwed on plate with glued nickels was treated to the same banging onto the top of an anvil. Both directions. Two of the nickels came off but the screws never loosened. No threadlocker on the screws either. I was able to snap the other nickel off by hand. So, gorilla doesn't hold slick nickels well. JB does but there is quite a blob of JB on them. 1917
 

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Discussion Starter #15


Tapered the head on these screws and countersunk the plate. I took both mock ups...the gorilla glued on base with five nickels and whacked it 1,000 times on a steel anvil. Hard. Nothing came loose. Same for the screwed on one. No threadlocker. Two of the nickels came off but nothing else. The nickels were to represent the weight of the sight. So, both concepts worked pretty well. I think I will try to track down a red dot tomorrow and fix it to a P22 tomorrow...if I can find what I'm looking for. The mounts for the compact versions are still a mystery at this point. Polymer Shield red dot, 14 grams, the base plate with screws is 18 grams and the breech block with holes drilled in it drops from 20 gr to 18 grams. The firing pin runs freely with the breech block pulled up tightly against the slide. 14 gm sight + 8 gm base/screws -2 gms less breech block. Total - 20 gm additional weight on the slide.

The stress to the slide from the screws along with the holes is likely to the the more problematic solution with regard to the integrity of the slide.

A question. Do they make drill bits that will drill the hole and taper the top. Centering the two separately is a bit of a chore. 1917
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Instead of a flat bottom plate, you need the bottom to be concave, for more surface area contact.....like this one https://www.amazon.com/ARWIN-Mount-Adapter-Standard-Dovetail/dp/B07SLTHXNV/ref=sr_1_11?crid=OF3P2OTDLSOR&dchild=1&keywords=red+dot+adapter+mount+1911&qid=1584305114&sprefix=,aps,180&sr=8-11 I used one like this for my PPQ 45 experiment.....had to modify the bottom contour a little then used the epoxy putty for a contact patch from side to side. PLUS, the thing is held on with the little dovetail adapter.

Just food for thought.
I'm not sure that would be of benefit. The P22 has a flat anti-glare rail down the center that I use for leveling the base. With the screws so close to it, leveling is almost automatic. Now if I had something to mill a shallow groove down the bottom of the mount just the width of those rails....it would be self centering and leveling. I don't have any milling equipment. Need a go fund me site.

Oh yeah...there ain't no dovetail on a P22...there isn't anything but a tiny zinc loop that holds on the rear sight. They couldn't have made this any harder to solve. 1917
 

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Hmmmmm, no dovetail. That sucks. Considering what you've got to work with, it seems like you're on the right track.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Of course that has been an issue for aftermarket sights all along. And, the reason there are none. The top of the slide is very thin and the firing pin runs immediately beneath the underside of it. And it is zinc. The only steel I could imagine that might work would be to drill into specific parts of the mim'd steel breech block. That in of itself is a small part but it is what slams into the rear of the steel chamber each time the slide closes. It appears to be pretty tough. Never heard of one breaking.

This is why this whole thing is a bit tricky. Gotta be light. Gotta be securely attached to the top of the slide somehow. I can fit it and keep the rear polymer sight or remove it and the loop and move the mount further rearward. I will not be able to move the holes into the breech block. Those have to stay where they are. After I pick up a red dot I will place it on the pistol to see if the location makes any difference aesthetically or functionally when aiming fast. We are talking no more than 1/2" here. So unless moving the sight rearward is of significant benefit I will leave it forward of the rear sight. My cheap drill press that someone gave me has too much runout for some reason. Chuck or something else...I don't know but it sure is aggravating. I can do better by hand. 1917
 

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any chance you can grab a piece of carbon fiber. that stuff is super strong and super light. i've been shooting carbon arrows for years and they're great. carbon glues so well and wont come apart. being that it would be used as a mounting plate it wouldn't have to be the highest quality.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Welcome junior 10, I don't know much about carbon fiber. Sounds like something worth checking into. Can you purchase it in sheets that are hard pressed? An aluminum base is easy enough to make, and it can be drilled and threaded so that the red dot can be screwed down. On this pistol I will need a base mount...either glued or screwed onto the slide. Then the red dot screwed down.

Gluing would be preferable if the base could be made to stick solidly to the slide. The one I glued to a flat place of JB Weld seems to be really stuck solidly. Apparently the Gorilla glue does not hold well on something like the irregular surface of nickels. Smooth surfaces...yes.

When I was racing my aluminum hood STI some of the guys were installing carbon fiber hoods...that is about the extent of my knowledge of it. Can the carbon fiber be trimmed very neatly and have a nice edge? Good idea. 1917
 
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