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Aimpoint red-dot sights in "Blackhawk Down"

Discussion in 'Shooting Gear and Storage' started by Oleg Volk, Jan 7, 2003.

  1. Oleg Volk

    Oleg Volk Moderator Emeritus

    Looking through the film recently reminded me of a question I have about red dot sights as used in combat. If rain, or mud, or dust obscure the red dot optics, and the irons are co-located to be used right through the glass, are soldiers expected to tear the sight off their weapons, or point shoot without sights or something else entirely?
  2. Derek Zeanah

    Derek Zeanah System Administrator Staff Member

    If the front of the sight gets covered in muck, the sight still works (try it with the front covered). If the back gets covered in muck, I think you'd want a quick release.

    At least, that's how mine is set up.
  3. Oleg Volk

    Oleg Volk Moderator Emeritus

    Are you saying it turns into an occluded eye sight, similar to the HK purpose-designed item? Will have to try that and see if it produces useful results.
  4. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    They will act as an OEG, and parallax will be no more of a problem than it is when the front lens is not occluded.

    The OEG "effect" can be seen even in conventional scopes. Cover up the front lens of your Leupold, and if there is any light going in the rear of the scope, you'll be able to see the cross-hairs (they'll appear gold). Simply keep both eyes open and it'll appear in your field of view. 'Course, a consistent cheek weld is important for parallax.

    A quick-release Aimpoint base is a REALLY good idea, though.

  5. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    The only thing I'd add to Zak's post is that you have to have normal binocular vision for any occluded eye scope to work.

    In the movie Black Hawk Down, they used an older version of the Aimpoint and they were mounted to the carry handle. This gave a very high mount, but you could use the irons through the channel of the mount. I'm just guessing, because I don't know which mount they used. But the common mounts that are available allow you to use the irons.

    I'd like to say that there are tradeoffs and compromises with everything. Yes, if you mount a red dot sight cowitnessed with the irons, you will have to remove it if the occular lens becomes obscured. But let me ask you this; is it faster and more efficient to wipe the mud off quickly and stay in the fight, or can you remove and discard it faster?

    I'd bet that you could wipe enough mud off your occular lens to shoot faster then you could remove the sight, or even change a magazine. If you are in such a close quarters battle that even taking that much time out of the fight will cost you your life, you'll most likely continue to fire without the sight.

    Ever fired a rifle with a rear peep sight in the driving rain? A lot more of a pain in the you-know-what then wiping the mud off the occular lens of your Aimpoint. Another what if to worry about! :D

  6. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    re: without the peep sight.

    I thought the common set-up was to have a flip-up rear sight behind the detachable aimpoint: something like an ARMS #38 or #40, or a GG&G MAD.

  7. igor

    igor Well-Known Member

    Just saw a comparison of red dot sights in a local gun rag - the author had several different mounts made for his 30-06 Valmet Petra and they were all "off side", that is, not directly on top of the receiver. That left the iron sight usable at any time, not to mention enabled the Valmet to be field-stripped without interfering with the collimation. Guess this should work?

    The author commented that the mounting design was especially good for him, as he's right-handed but with a stronger left eye...
  8. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member


    Yes that's the recommended set up. I use a Knight's Armament 300 meter backup sight on my R6920.

    Obviously you've never fired a rifle equipped with only irons, with a closed rear aperature as is found on most US military weapons in the driving rain. The raindrops will lill the peep sight with water and make it just as unusable as mud on the occular lens of your Aimpoint :(

  9. Oleg Volk

    Oleg Volk Moderator Emeritus

    What's the solution, to use the top of the front sight "ears" as a bead?
  10. Zak Smith

    Zak Smith Moderator Staff Member

    Tactical M4 Umbrella.

  11. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    On the M16/AR15 (provided you don't have a flattop) you can get a rough sight picture by using the protective wings on the side of the rear sight to line up the front.

    You can also make a field expediant low light sight by placing white adhesive tape or light colored masking tape on the front sight base, flip the rear sight so that neither aperature is up, center the white tape between the rear wings. Not precise, but good enough for hits out to say 100 meters on a man sized target. Added benefit is that it overcomes the natural tendancy to shoot high in the dark.

  12. trapshooter

    trapshooter Well-Known Member

    Like others have already noted, yep OES. Can see if this works by shooting with the front cap down. Like has been discussed before, here or on TFL, if the batteries on an Aimpoint go, you're SOL. So...

    for quick dis-mounts, maybe there's something out there that can be adapted to red-dots similar to the mount Sako uses on the TRG-22/42. It's really cool. half a turn, and the whole scope assembly (base and all) comes off, yet is secure as it cams pretty tight when putting it on. Then the 'military' (i.e., peep) sight can be used, if its already mounted. Haven't seen this on any other rifle, personally, but somebody has to have done it. It's too easy.
  13. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    The quick-disconnect mounts already exist. A.R.M.S. makes the #22M68 which has a throw lever and can be off on a second. Aimpoint makes the Railgrabber which uses and oversized thumbscrew.

    The A.R.M.S. is probably the fastest on off. Both return to zero if they are placed on the same spot on the rail.


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