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BUIS: Cost Benefit Analysis

It occurs to me that, over the years, I’ve probably owned about 25ish AR-15s, Of those, one was the old school carry handle type and two were scoped. And I put backup iron sights on them all, save those three. Now, for those backup sights, I figure the least expensive one I bought (Magpul, btw) was about $50. The most expensive (Yankee Hill, btw) came in at about $100. So, quick and simplified math (carry the one) means I’ve spent about $1,650 on back up sights over the years. That’s a whole AR build with a decent optic.

Number of times I’ve needed back up sights: 0.

So, if you’re not wanting to waste money, put back up sights only on your one or two go-to rifles. It’s cheaper.

7 Responses to “BUIS: Cost Benefit Analysis”

  1. Jim W Says:

    The USMC auctions off old KAC micro flip sights from time to time. I participated in a group buy and got one for 35 bucks.

  2. A Critic Says:

    “Number of times Ive needed back up sights: 0.”

    How many of these were range toys and how many were combat training/use weapons?

  3. Samuel Suggs Says:

    Why didn’t you take the irons off the gun before selling it? Then when you built the next one you could just put them on the new gun. Same with the optic but I don’t understand the whole build sell build sell mindset anyway so what am I talking about?

  4. Kevin Baker Says:

    But, but… TACTICAL!?!

  5. Old NFO Says:

    Good point Unc, and agree; I’d have been pulling sights when I sold the rifles…

  6. Matthew in Marietta Says:

    In my non-expert opinion, I don’t find BUIS all that necessary. The last time I was shooting a steel silhouette target I tried a related experiment. The target was 1/2 size and I was at approximately 25 yards which would equate to shooting the real thing at 50 yards. I turned off my Aimpoint T-1, centered the target in the middle of the T-1, and started shooting. I believe my hit rate was 100%. A T-1 is basically a large ghost ring sight. Of course I still have backup sights on my go to rifle anyway, I’m not crazy. 😉

  7. Geodkyt Says:

    Having a BUIS is like having a firearm for self defense in the first place — you probably will NEVER need it, but if you do, you will need it REALLY BADLY.

    Of course, you have to ask yourself, do I need a $100 (OR MORE!) set of BUIS?

    For that matter, why do BUIS’s mostly come with a sophisticated ranging adjustment akin to the M16A2 setup? It’s a BUIS, for God’s sake, not the sights you’re planning on making The President’s Hundred with. Anything fancier than the M16A1 style sights is too complicated for a BUIS (with the exception that folding sights as BUIS may be best for your particular application).

    You also don’t need (and darned sure shouldn’t want on a defensive rifle) a BUIS where the zero is no-tools, finger adjustable. . . because you don’t want to find out, RIGHT when you actually NEED them to work, that they’ve drifted off zero because the adjustment drum got spun. . . (Again, see “M16A1 sights”).