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Iron sights v. green lasers v. red dots

This is a very interesting study on using different sights. I have a laser on a carry gun. And a RMR on another carry gun. Both are M&Ps. I found the laser, initially, to be more instinctive. It took me rather a lot of practice to get good finding the red dot of the RMR. But now, I have no problem with it.

3 Responses to “Iron sights v. green lasers v. red dots”

  1. GomeznSA Says:

    ANY sighting system has its strengths and weaknesses – as you essentially noted, practice will result in ability to use the specific one you choose.

  2. HL Says:

    I have struggled with the slide mounted RDS. I need more practice, but I was significantly slower with it than I was with irons. Recoil from a 45 that never bothered me when I was using irons gave me fits when trying to find the red dot again after each shot.

    If you have co witness irons, you can find the dot quicker, but once you have lined them up the benefit of the dot was lost.

    I should note this was in 3 Gun. The red dot makes hitting the A zones easier, but it makes hitting your target much slower. YMMV.

  3. Jerry The Geek Says:

    I competed in IPSC/USPSA for over a decade before I got my hands on a pistol with a Red-dot sight.

    (Many thanks to Dave Skinner of STI, Inc. in Texas)

    My experience was that there was a very VERY long period when I was doing the “Red Dot Dance”, much to the amusement of my friends.

    But after a few weeks of matches, and a bit of practice, I discovered that presenting your pistol so that it was intuitively registered on the target was no more difficult with a red-dot sight than with iron sights. It’s only a matter of practice and familiarization.

    In fact, once you’ve become accustomed to a red-dot sight, it ruins you for iron sights.

    The ONLY criticism of red-dot sights is that it’s very easy (especially toward the end of the day) to have the lowering sun provide enough “FLARE” on your sight surface that it’s difficult to find the target, let alone the red dot.

    As is true with all facets of competitive pistol shooting, it’s a matter of practice and familiarization.

    After a few weeks of practice (and losing a few matches), the sight/target alignment problem becomes intuitive .. as is true with any pistol with sights which are different from what you are accustomed to.

    Note that for aging competitors (hello!), electronic sights add years of competitive possibilities. The problem with iron sights is that you must align two sight elements (front sight post, rear sight “V”) in order to engage the target.

    With the Red Dot sights, you have only one element … the dot.

    It does take a while to learn not to dance with the Red Dot, but it’s worth the effort when you realize that it has added years to your ability to compete.