Don't Let Swivels Get in the Way - Here's How to Put a Sling on a Rifle

Ready to take your shooting skills to the next level? Check out our article on how to put a sling on a rifle without swivel. Discover the easy and safe way to put a sling with our comprehensive guide to elevate your shooting experience.

Rifle slings are an essential accessory for any firearm enthusiast or hunter, allowing for hands-free carrying of the weapon conveniently and comfortably. Typically, these slings are attached to two swivels – one in the stock of the gun and one at the top of the barrel.

However, what if your shotgun or rifle doesn't come with sling swivels? It’s absolutely possible to attach them without these components as well. It can be tricky to put a sling on your rifle without swivels, but fear not, we've got you covered.

So read this blog post to find out how you can do it correctly!

Understanding the Basics

A sling is an essential piece of equipment for any shooter, as it helps to distribute the weight of the rifle evenly and provides additional support when shooting. Swivels, on the other hand, are small metal attachments that allow the sling to rotate and pivot, making it easier to carry the rifle.

However, not all rifles come with swivels, or you may simply prefer to not use them. Mostly these are lightweight and streamlined rifles preferred by precision shooters. However, this limits the flexibility in how you can carry the rifle.

Whether you currently have quick detach swivels or not, if hunting is your passion then a rifle sling should be at the top of your must-have list. No matter if you're hauling a firearm up your treestand or having to traverse miles in pursuit of the game, strapping on a sling is essential. So, it is important to know how you can attach slings to these rifles.

Preparation for Putting a Sling on a Rifle Without Swivels

required tools and drill bits
Tools and materials needed

Tools and materials needed

Before you start, you will need to have the right tools and materials on hand. This includes:



-High-tensile strength nylon webbing


-Paracord or other strong cord

-Heavy-duty grommets

-Plastic or metal washers

-Tape measure

Tools (if you want to drill a and fix  swivels first)

-Drill and drill bits



-Needle-nose pliers

-Cordless drill

Hole saw

-Utility knife

Safety precautions to be taken

Choose a clean workbench before you dive in. When working with any firearms-related equipment there are certain safety considerations that must be followed at all times.

Always handle the rifle securely and keep it pointed in a safe direction away from any people or animals. Wear protective gear such as eyewear and gloves when necessary. Never leave the rifle unattended during your project.

Guide to Putting the Sling

There are several ways you can attach a sling to your rifle without using swivels, the most common three methods are:

Looping it around the barrel, Threading it through the running slot, or Attaching a QD Swivel to your gun stock and then fixing the sling with it. Choose one that works best for your situation based on what supplies you have available and the type of weapon you are dealing with

Looping Around the Barrel

This method requires you to create two loops with the sling and then use one loop to pull it through itself and attach it. If you don't have an extra long rifle sling like the Ultimate Firearm Sling with Extension, you can use a paracord to create loops and attach your sling.

Begin by making a large loop of equal size and position the rifle on your shoulder in front of you so that the barrel rests in the top loop.

Then, pull out enough slack from the bottom of the loop so that it can be used as an attachment point, and secure it around the buttstock or handguard below.

Threaded Through Running Slot

This method involves threading one end of the sling through a small slot cut into either side of a gun’s buttstock and body. Position your rifle so that you have access to both sides and begin threading one end of the sling through the slot until it has emerged at its exit point on the opposite side.

Then you can secure this end in place with some additional cordage or another simply tie-off point such as a carabiner or hook system attachment point before doing likewise with other ends. If you can't find an anchor point on the front part, you can loop it around the barrel on the other end.

Attached With Attachment Point

This requires more specialized equipment than either of the previous two options but may offer greater stability, comfort, and convenience depending on individual setup and preferences.

If you have an old gun, mostly with wood stock, without factory-installed sling points, or they have been already used, you have to drill a hole through your rifle stock and manually attach a swivel first, somewhat similar to what you did, while attaching bipods.

Here's a step-by-step guide to attaching a quick-detach (QD) swivel stud to an old wood stock rifle:

  1. Gather your tools: drill, drill bits, screws, screwdriver, and QD swivel stud.
  2. Determine the desired location for the QD swivel stud on the rifle stock.
  3. Mark the location with a pencil or marker.
  4. Select the appropriate size drill bit for the screws that come with the QD swivel stud.
  5. Use the drill to create a pilot hole at the marked location on the stock.
  6. Insert the screw into the QD swivel stud and attach it to the stock by screwing it into the pilot hole.
  7. Repeat the process for any additional QD swivel studs you want to attach.
  8. Tighten the screws securely with a screwdriver.
  9. Now, simply attach each end of your chosen sling to the QD swivel studs, and you're all set.
  10. Test the attachment by attaching and detaching the sling to the QD swivel studs to ensure they are secure and function properly.

How to adjust the sling to fit comfortably

Adjusting your sling to fit comfortably is essential for comfortable and safe shooting. Here's how you can do it:

  1. Start by loosening the two side straps until they are at their maximum length. This will give you the room needed to adjust the sling around your body.
  2. While still wearing your rifle, place the front strap across your back and chest. Make sure that the rifle is secure against your body without any slack in the sling.
  3. Pull on each arm of the sling until it feels like it’s in an ideal position for you to shoot accurately and comfortably – make sure that there is no slack in the strap when pulling on it!
  4. Finally, once you've got everything in place, tighten both sides straps until it fits perfectly with no wiggle or movement when you move around with it on.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

Attaching rifle slings to guns without swivels can be a tricky process, as some rifles don't have the necessary components for proper attachment. Here are some of the common issues to look out for when attempting this task:

  1. Poor Fit – If the material used in the sling is of poor quality or too tight, then it will be difficult to attach securely and comfortably. Make sure that you get a sling with enough material so that you can fit it correctly around your body and firearm.
  2. Not Secure – When attaching a rifle sling to a gun without swivels, make sure to use high-quality straps and secure them tightly around your gun. Otherwise, there could be excess wiggle room which could compromise accuracy when shooting.
  3. Too Much Slack – Too much slack in the strap can cause difficulty when aiming/firing because it will not remain as tight against your body throughout the movement. To avoid this issue, adjust the strap until it fits snugly but still allows comfortable mobility while carrying your firearm.
  4. Damage to stock while drilling -  Drilling holes in your stock can cause damage if you are not careful. Make sure to take your time and use the right drill bit size for the job. It's also a good idea to practice on an old piece of wood or similar material before attempting this on your gun's stock.
  5. Uneven drilling - Before attaching your swivels, clean your gun barrel thoroughly with a gun cleaning solvent or at least a vinegar solution. The presence of dirt and debris can cause the drill bit to become uneven and cause damage to your gun.
  6. Finally, make sure all screws are securely tightened with a screwdriver to avoid any slipping or loosening while carrying it in the field.

Final Thoughts

We hope this article has helped you understand the process of attaching a rifle sling to your gun without swivels. With these tips and tricks, you should be able to make sure that your firearm is securely attached with no wiggle or movement while carrying it in the field.

Remember - safety always comes first! So take all necessary precautions before attempting any task related to firearms. And when you're in the market for a new sling, just tap the button below and check out our article on the best hunting rifle slings to find the perfect one for you. Whether you are a beginner or an advanced shooter, we have got something that will suit your style.

Check Out The Best Hunting Rifle Slings
A man carrying his riflein a sling bag

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