inexpensive red dot optics


January 29, 2004, 09:23 AM
Been searching the board(s) for reviews and opinions of inexpensive red dot optics to mount on a weaver base I have on an AK. I've found out that there is quiet a variety out there. By inexpensive, I mean about $100 or less. I'm saving for "quality" optics for my AR, so I don't want to spend a lot on the AK for an EOTech or Aimpoint. The AK is a plinker only, for general plinking usage, say from 25 to 50yds, .

Given the above, my questions are:

1) What is the difference between to using the 30mm/42mm optics vs the more traditional looking tube red dots? Eye relief, FOV, etc?

2) I've read that the cheaper ones have parallax issues. Is there a cut-off point or brand name to avoid? Does parallax really matter for plinking purposes?

3) Are one of the cheaper (Simmons, Tasco, BSA, etc in the $30 - $40) ones okay, or should I go with one of the more expensive ones (Millett, Redfield, Bushnell, etc.)?


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January 29, 2004, 10:33 AM
I bought a tasco red dot from wall mart a year ago to try them out and see if i like them. I do, they work great and the tasco, altough cheap and junk works for the weekend plinker that is not going to Iraq soon.

In short buy the cheap one if you are just going to shoot on weekends.

Mine is currently doing duty on a pellet gun in the backyard
anti-bird-terroist unit.

January 29, 2004, 10:49 AM
The way it sounds you are going to keep it short range only with the AK and probably fool around at times just to see what it can do a little longer. I would say get very cheap if the AK will not be the primary use gun (seeing your saving for quality on the AR i assume that). The only difference in the larger objectives i feel you will notice will be field of view. the larger the objective the more target area you can see.

On another note as stated by alot of guys here and other places....get quality. There have been a bunch of people who get the cheap scope, then change to another cheap scope, then trash the cheap scopes all together and buy a quality scope for their gun. It seems in the end they could have bought 2 quality scopes instead of just the one with all of the throw away money spent on the cheaper scopes.

My choice for a decent "cheap" scope would be the simmons blazer model which is a 42mm optic which makes picking out a target quicker at close range. just my .02


Marko Kloos
January 29, 2004, 11:09 AM
I have two of the $30 WallyWorld BSA RD-30 red dots. One sits on my 12ga Benelli Nova, the other on my CETME. They've both worked fine so far, and neither has lost its zero yet.

January 29, 2004, 12:22 PM
I agree, the BSA is a good scope for the money. I mounted one on my M1-A and fired about 150rds. Amazingly the thing held it's zero.

January 29, 2004, 12:33 PM
I had a cheap BSA on my AK for a bit. It worked just fine. I put it back on my Marlin 9mm carbine and it still works fine. I put a $100 Millet on the AK now, just because it has an adjustable dot size which is fun for a plinker.

I think the cheaper red dots will work fine, but not be as accurate due to parallax error. Like any other optic, the more you pay, the better quality you get. Better quality=better precision with any optics. I do feel though that the difference in accuracy between lowerquality and higher quality is not as great as with magnified optics.

January 29, 2004, 02:54 PM
I've got a Blaser that I've been abusing for a few years. It's been on just about everything I own with a rail on it. Still using the original battery, even after forgetting to turn it off a couple of times.

stiletto raggio
January 31, 2004, 09:54 AM
I have a basically new BSA 30mm if you want it. I had it on a Taurus PT99, but I decided I don't like read dots on pistols. 20 bucks, you pay shipping.

Email me at if you want it.

January 31, 2004, 03:29 PM
Thanks for all the replies. A friend let me borrow a Millett SP2 for a bit. I really like that one, so I'm gonna order it from Brownells.

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