Home / DIY / DIY – M&P Novak Rear Sight Modification

DIY – M&P Novak Rear Sight Modification

I’ve mentioned a couple times that I feel that the Novak sights that come on the S&W M&P9 Pro are a little crowded. When shooting I feel like I’m not getting as much light through the sight picture as I would like.

The obvious answer would be to just buy new sights, but that is too easy. I’ve become a really big fan of my Sevigny competition sights that I have installed on my Glock 17, and I wanted to try to mimic the sight picture with the Novak sights on the M&P.

The first thing I did was to buy a cheap digital caliper, and some small needle files from Harbor Freight.

I measured the notch in the Sevigny rear sight, and it measured 0.146″ on my cheap calipers, and the Sevigny front sight measured 0.115″.

The M&P Sights measured 0.139″ rear, and 0.130″ front.

As you can probably surmise, the Sevigny sights offer a wider rear notch, as well as a narrower front sight compared to the Novak sights on the M&P, leading to a much more open sight picture.

I decided that the first step I would take would be to open the rear notch on the M&P to the 0.146″ that the Sevigny sight offered, and see how I like the sight picture. Its only 0.007″ so I didn’t think I would probably even notice it, but after a couple minutes of very careful filing, I was actually pretty satisfied with the result. I’m seeing a little more light in the sight picture, so I’m going to try this out for a couple hundred rounds, and see how it goes.

Unfortunately, filing the front sight narrower isn’t really an option, so I may order a narrower front sight after the trial period.

Lastly, this leaves some bare steel on the rear sight which is susceptible to rust if left uncovered. For the time being, I rubbed a little cold bluing onto the bare steel to give it a little protection. When I’m certain I’m finished filing on the rear notch, I’ll finish it right with a few more coats of bluing to get it good and dark.

If you are going to try something like this, remember to stop and measure often, and to go slow. You can always go back later and take a little more metal off, but putting it back on is tough!

About Lucas

Editor/Head Honcho at Triangle Tactical. Lucas is a life long shooter and outdoorsman, avid concealed carrier and competitive shooter, and a lover of pork fat.


  1. You building a comp pistol or fighting pistol? I tend to run Trijicon sights on everything. I'm actually thinking to a different, more vertical rear sight as I would need the purchase point should I lose loss of a limb or something. I can manipulate with Trijicon, but am considering. VTAC makes some great sights for the M&P.

    How are you liking the Glock 17? I'm on the fence on a M&P 9c or a Glock. Wanted to own one, just haven't ponied up and purchased one.

    Hope all is well. TOJOURS PRET!!


    • The M&P is my all-around pistol. It's too big to carry, but I want to keep it suitable to HD as well as competition. I've played with the VTAC sights, and I felt they were too busy with the fiber-optic as well as the tritium vials. I'm considering some 10-8 sights, or waiting for Ameriglo to come out with a U-notch for the M&P to pair with one of their 'Hack' front sights.

      I love my G17, it's got somewhere around 25,000 rounds through it without a single malfunction of any kind. Great pistol!

      Happy New Year Mike!

      • Roger that. VTACs are a bit costly, too. Making other investments. I think I might invest in either the G17 or G19. Not sure yet, I know them to be great weapons, just thrown off by all the hype and marketing.

        Happy New Year to you, brother. Hope we get to shoot bait together in 2013! Stay safe. Nice sharp, powder dry.

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