Iron sights, poor eyesight, and inconsistencies


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stubbicatt
September 30, 2012, 11:11 AM
As I have aged, I have noticed a decline in eyesight. No surprises there.

However, some forms of iron sight are not as difficult to use as others for me.

Ferinstance, the Mosin Nagant and the SKS are fairly clear for me. The Mini 14 and the M14 and AR15 I can see pretty good.

My new coyote getter, Mannlicher Schoenaur, I cannot see the sight picture at all.

The only differences I can see (pun intended! :evil:) is that the M-S has a bronze ball and post front sight that must have to nestle down low in the rear sight, and I cannot see either the notch in the rear with certainty, and cannot see the bronze ball at all. So now I am putting a scope on this rifle, which is OK for its intended use, but really wrecks the lines of the rifle, IMO.

Anybody know why some of these sights are visible, but others aren't? The rear sight leaf on the M-S is about the same distance from the eye as is the Mosin Nagant rear sight. The front sight is in the next zip code. The SKS sights are closer in overall dimension, and I can see them, maybe not clearly, but well enough to pop clays on the 100 yard berm.

Sigh.:banghead:

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Gun Geezer
September 30, 2012, 11:35 AM
Try red dots. Not irons , but a big bulky scope either.

Welding Rod
September 30, 2012, 02:11 PM
You might try shooting both sights with Birchwood Casey Sight Black, or equivalent.

I use this stuff on my match rifles. It is a huge help in achieving a consistant POI when there is alternating sun shine and overcast conditions.

Then you could determine if the problem is the color and surface finish of the sights, or the sights themselves.

You may find that they work just fine with a nice coat of flat black on them.

stubbicatt
September 30, 2012, 02:32 PM
You might try shooting both sights with Birchwood Casey Sight Black, or equivalent.

I use this stuff on my match rifles. It is a huge help in achieving a consistant POI when there is alternating sun shine and overcast conditions.

Then you could determine if the problem is the color and surface finish of the sights, or the sights themselves.

You may find that they work just fine with a nice coat of flat black on them.
Good idea. I have some carbide rocks somewhere and a lamp. Sight black may be just the ticket! Thanks.

DammitBoy
September 30, 2012, 02:40 PM
I have the same eyesight issues and the lifesaver for me has been hi-vis fiber optic sights.

http://www.hivizsights.com/

Highly recommend you check them out. I can see my sights again!!

carbine85
September 30, 2012, 05:06 PM
I have night time driving glasses that kinda give me HD vision at night. I now use these for shooting with irons. IMHO the Mosin sights are horrible. My glasses help a lot and I'm also using a red fiber optic front sight post with good results. In my case I have astigmatism and can't focus well on smaller things close up. This winter I plan on buying glasses specifically for shooting.
If you are focusing on the rear sight that is going to mess up the sight picture. You have to look right through it.

stubbicatt
October 18, 2012, 09:46 AM
I found that using the bottoms of my bifocals worked just fine. I learned this by turning the glasses upside down and looking at the sights. So off to the local drugstore for reading glasses, and voila! I can see the sights.

That said, I still had a scope installed, as it is so much easier to reach out and touch something when you can see the target and the aiming reference at the same time.

The scope is something new to me, the Nikon 4.5-14 Coyote reticle scope. Even after I bought it I wasn't so sure I wanted to use it, but I tried it anyways.

http://i80.photobucket.com/albums/j187/stubbicatt/mannlicherschoenaurwnikonscope2_zps938e4e2c.jpg

http://i80.photobucket.com/albums/j187/stubbicatt/mannlicherschoenaurwnikonscope_zps14509c1d.jpg

Neat little rifle, had it borescoped, the gunsmith said it looked pristine, which is a good thing given the reputation of 243 as a throat burner. I *may* do the AI reamer to this chamber, as I have read elsewhere that the steeper shoulder of that round is supposed to be easier on the throat of the rifle.

These are the mounts from EAW, New England Custom Gunsmithing.

http://i80.photobucket.com/albums/j187/stubbicatt/msmountsrightside_zps9093db4e.jpg

http://i80.photobucket.com/albums/j187/stubbicatt/mountsleftside_zps1b1c4da9.jpg

They are quick release in nature, the scope just sort of pivots on the front mount. Unless one were trying to swap out another scope, I can see no reason to do this, as the front scope base is tall enough that the iron sights are no longer useable.

Ken451
October 18, 2012, 11:00 AM
In regard to how some iron sights work better for you than others, could it be the width of the front sight vs. the width of the rear sight? Precise sights tend to fill the rear slot more than a battle sight (e.g. SKS) which leaves more open space.

That said, I just bought a red dot (well red/green) and it seems to be a good improvement.

Ken

Jim NE
October 18, 2012, 05:00 PM
I also have eye problems, probably related to age, though I'm not THAT old. I've ordered my new Mini-14, in part, because the sights are more legible than most, as the OP had mentioned, but it's still going to be a challenge. My left eye is OK, it's my right eye that gives me problems.

I had another thread about scoping the Mini for just this reason. The scope on my 770 Remington makes my right eye problems disappear, but I'd prefer not to have one on my Mini. Still, if that's what it takes, that's what it takes. The other thing to consider is - if you can't see the sight at the end of your rifle clearly, how can you know for sure what you're shooting at 60 yards away?

I'll wait till I get the rifle before I make a final decision on what to do.

Vern Humphrey
October 18, 2012, 05:33 PM
Ferinstance, the Mosin Nagant and the SKS are fairly clear for me. The Mini 14 and the M14 and AR15 I can see pretty good.

My new coyote getter, Mannlicher Schoenaur, I cannot see the sight picture at all.

The only differences I can see (pun intended! ) is that the M-S has a bronze ball and post front sight that must have to nestle down low in the rear sight, and I cannot see either the notch in the rear with certainty, and cannot see the bronze ball at all. So now I am putting a scope on this rifle, which is OK for its intended use, but really wrecks the lines of the rifle, IMO.

Anybody know why some of these sights are visible, but others aren't?
Take a look at the front sights -- all those you can see well are plain black posts. In addition, the Mini 14, M15 and AR 15 are peep sights -- about as good as it gets when it comes to iron sights. The M-N and SKS have broad rear notches.

Your MS has a fine rear notch and a shiny front sight - really a poor combination for someone with astigmatism.

Cosmoline
October 18, 2012, 06:23 PM
I've noticed my eye can "grab" some front sights but not others these days. The Buckhorn/Ball combination common on some muzzleloaders are impossible for me. The ball is just too small and nestled too deep. So I usually swap them out for a simple notch rear and sourdough or patridge front. Those I can use easily.

I also do well with aperture sights still. In fact I seem to be getting better with them as I age. Go figure.

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