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Decided to put a reflex sight on my training pistol

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Peakbagger46, Aug 15, 2019.

  1. Peakbagger46

    Peakbagger46 Member

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    I guess times are changing. For the last decade and a half, my duty gun has been a Glock 22. Recently my agency has switched to a Glock 17 with a Trijicon RMR and co witness irons.

    My training gun for a long time has been a Ruger Mark iii. Good gun made even better with the slingshot mod and disabling the magazine disconnect safety.

    Just ordered a Vortex Venom and a Burris Fastfire base to slide into the rear sight dovetail. Anyone here have experience installing an optic base into a dovetail?
     
  2. Texas10mm

    Texas10mm Member

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    I've got several red dots mounted on Ruger MK II and 22/45 pistols. They work just fine.
     
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  3. Peakbagger46

    Peakbagger46 Member

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    Cool. Mine is actually a 22/45 Mark 3. Did you use the dovetail to mount the optics?
     
  4. Texas10mm

    Texas10mm Member

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    I've used the dovetail and mount.
     
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  5. WiTom

    WiTom Member

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    I have the Burris Fastfire III and used the 1911 mount, installed on my Springfield Armory 1911 45acp. Very easy, and no complaints. My older eyes are really enjoying the red dot. Had an issue with the battery cap coming off, when shooting, and that was about a year in, maybe 2000 rounds through it, but Burris was great. Called them, told them what was happening, they sent me out a new cover, all paid, no questions asked... great service.
     
  6. Peakbagger46

    Peakbagger46 Member

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    Thanks for the input. I’d rather have stuck with irons but wasn’t given that option at work. Perhaps after a few thousand more rounds the advantage of the reflex sight will be realized.
     
  7. Peakbagger46

    Peakbagger46 Member

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    Got it setup today after work! The Burris base was easy to install and fits the Vortex perfectly. It sits a bit higher than the Trijicon on my duty weapon, but I think it will be just fine for training.

    Now for a lot more range time so I can become more proficient on this format...


    8F0EF5E9-4A0A-4847-B261-8666B9AD9CD4.jpeg
     
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  8. Goneshoot'n

    Goneshoot'n Member

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    Very nice, I'm just about saved up for that same sight for my browning buckmark. Looking forward to the range report!
     
  9. barnetmill

    barnetmill Member

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    For a combat training pistol you want some sort of co-witness that is similar to your duty/combat pistol. For a range target pistol or informal plinker the co-witness is not essential. If it takes you a few moments to find the dot is not a big deal and you will br shooting most often with the arm fully extended which helps with alignment and finding the dot.
    Below is a picture of an adapter with co-witness iron sights that will fit in the dove tail of a glock slide. It also attaches in the back of the slide. The maker and vendor stamped on the back of unit.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2019 at 9:46 PM
  10. rpenmanparker

    rpenmanparker Member

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    You don’t need any co-witness on a training pistol for sure and neither on a duty pistol. Practice muscle memory for locating the dot. Use a 6 MOA dot. It will work fine. Just leave the optic on at all times on the duty pistol and change the battery like once a week. What do they cost in bulk, a buck or two? You will always be good.
     
    Last edited: Aug 22, 2019 at 9:50 PM
  11. barnetmill

    barnetmill Member

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    Respectfully strongly disagree with you on that. On the Co-Witness, the OPs agency saw the wisdom of co-witness.

    When one trains to shoot while getting off the X ambidextrously, under stress, from a variety of positions as may happen in combat, paying the extra for the co-witness is worth it. Practice muscle memory for locating the dot you do not want to be locating the dot. The dot must appear instantly as it will with co-witness.

    On a rmr by trijicon (that is the gold standard for concealable combat pistols) you must remove the sight from the gun to remove battery and really should verify the zero afterwards. The training gun probably does not need an RMR and most of larger other red dots can be changed without removal from the gun. change the battery like once a week An RMR will go a very long time on just one battery and older models did not even have an off-on switch.
     
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  12. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger Member

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    Yeah....

    First of all muscles don’t have memories. That saying drives me nuts because it is biologically not possible. Maybe when people say that they mean practice something until it becomes a subconscious level task that you don’t have to think about to perform. Or maybe they’re dumb enough to think muscles have memories.

    As for the co-witness on a duty or carry gun, there are various opinions on that some very experienced shooters don’t bother with a rear sight and just run a tall front sight. Their experience has shown that using the window as a huge ghost ring for the front sight to center in will deliver hits at close range. If you can get a co-witness sight set that doesn’t eat up a ton of your window then I say include the rear sight.

    My VP9 long slide is milled for an Aimpoint ACRO P-1 and has a custom height Dawson Precision sight set installed, that co-witnesses perfectly in the bottom 1/4 to 1/5 or so of the optic window. Very unobtrusive but there just in case. Between some practice and the good ergonomics of the VP9 grip, finding the dot on presentation hasn’t been too hard with no need to reference the irons at all. The dot is a huge advantage once you get the hang of it and learn to trust it. I will not buy any handguns going forward that cannot be milked for an optic or that are not already optimized to mount one.

    As far as optic battery replacement strategy goes, the Trijicon RMR is supposed to be good for 2 years on one CR2032. So a smart guy will plan on changing annually to make sure the battery is always good to go. Unfortunately current RMR’s have to come off the slide for a battery change and then require a zero check or re-zero. So you have the cost of a battery plus ammo, and targets, and range time etc, at least in theory if you had to account the costs outside of normal training. The Aimpoint ACRO has a smaller battery, they claim a 1 year life. Mine is going on about 5 months and is going strong turned on all the time bright enough to be visible even with a 1000 lumen weapon light. I plan to change it in October at the 6 month mark, for margin of safety on the battery life. Each CR1225 battery is about $3, and I have 3 fresh spares. Changing the battery is easy and the sight stays on the slide, might take 1-2 minutes depending on how recalcitrant the batteries vacuum sealed wrapping is to open up.
     
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  13. rpenmanparker

    rpenmanparker Member

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    You can do without co-witness quite nicely, but I won’t argue against having it on a duty pistol. Couldn’t hurt although you can easily do without. The dot does come up automatically after practice. The fact that there are centering markings on good red dots to help you in a pinch is important. You know “muscle memory” is a shorthand phrase used nearly universally to mean the effect of training, but still want to bust on it. If you have a red dot, you should make it second nature, not something you have to search for.

    Battery reliability is not rocket science. Just like for smoke alarms all it takes is routine replacement. The cost is minuscule. The reliability is worth the trouble and cost. And I will tell you that an optic that has to be removed to change the battery is automatically disqualified. Trijicon could fix that in a flash, but it is easier and more profitable to just milk the cash cow. Screw ‘em. The lower cost competition has become too good.
     
    Last edited: Aug 23, 2019 at 7:08 AM
  14. rpenmanparker

    rpenmanparker Member

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    Maybe muscle memory doesn’t mean the muscle has memory but rather the brain remembers what the muscles should do. Yeah, that has to be it. Well now we can stop arguing about that.
     
  15. ATLDave

    ATLDave Member

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    Man, this thread is conflating a bunch of things. We've got to separate some stuff.
    • Index is having the gun pointing at the thing you are looking at (preparing/intending to shoot) with minimal conscious effort. On an iron sight gun, it means having the gun appear in your vision with the sights generally aligned and on-target, with only refinement needed. With a dot-sight gun, it means having the dot in the window and generally close to the intended aim point.
    • Co-witnessing just means the relationship of any iron sights on a dotted gun to the dot. This does not the same as index. One can have a dotted gun that doesn't even have iron sights and have an excellent index developed with it. In fact, the fastest pistol shooters running the fastest equipment in the world do precisely this.
      • Co-witnessing is mainly about easing the transition for people who have lots of experience shooting irons transition to dot use. It also has some benefit in terms of a backup in the event of a dot system failure.
    • There are things that a dedicated .22lr practice pistol can be used for. I am a huge fan of them. If it is a different gun regardless of the similarity of the sighting system, it will not give you a good index with your other guns. Index is specific to a gun type.
    • Someone who is using a .22lr with a dot can learn all kinds of things that are relevant to their carry/duty/competition dot gun. For instance, it's a great way to learn to see the dot's motion in recoil and learn to "shoot the streak" rather than waiting for the dot to become completely still on some shots. It's useful for programming your brain to instantly process "what you need to see" to get the hits you want. It's useful for training your brain not to be distracted by the slight wobble/jiggle of the dot (which can be distracting to some shooters who were simply unable to detect exactly the same amount of movement in their iron sights).
    • If, on the other hand, someone is trying to refine the index when shooting a Glock by using a Ruger, I think they're mostly wasting their time anyway. So I don't think it's particularly important that the dot have the same relative position as their other guns.
     
  16. rpenmanparker

    rpenmanparker Member

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    You have nailed it. Well said from start to finish.
     
  17. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger Member

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    Trijicon has a very good product in the RMR type 2 even though the sight has to come off for a battery change. The upside to that method of battery mounting is that the whole sight gets to be shorter and stay lower on the slide, and that’s not a bad thing. A CR2032 battery installed in an RMR gives a pretty dang good service life that’s not difficult to work around. A guy who is shooting regularly should have no issues swapping out a battery once a year, putting fresh thread locker on the mounting screws and hitting the range the next day to confirm zero.

    Currently there are only 3 miniature red dot sights for slide mounting that have proven to be worthy of hard use/duty carry by Aaron Cowan. Mr Cowan is very hard on optics, and so far is the only source I’m aware of who has conducted standardized testing procedures on pistol RDS’s, the test involves a high round count, and frequent physical abuse. The most resistant sight on the market to drops on the top of the optic is the Trijicon RMR, followed by the Aimpoint ACRO, and then the Holosun 507c if memory serves. The two top choices have some interesting trade offs in features and advantages depending on the end user’s preferences, and the Holosun is very budget oriented (if you like supporting Chinese made products... I refuse when acceptable alternatives exist).

    I’m in the Aimpoint ACRO P-1 fanboy camp right now, but I also own an older type 1 Trijicon RMR, and it’s a good sight. Until such time as the Aimpoint gives me a reason to dislike it, I feel the enclosed emitter and better optical quality with essentially equal durability give it the edge over the RMR. Plus the Aimpoint mounting foot print and design are simply superior to the Trijicon and every other system.
     
  18. rpenmanparker

    rpenmanparker Member

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    All good, but the difference in mount height between bottom and top battery compartment units is negligible. Not worth worrying about. And if you are using a red dot optic on a duty or SD weapon, you can’t wait until the battery craters to change it. I would say once a month would be the lowest acceptable frequency. You have to stay ahead of it. That is just too frequently for a bottom battery compartment unit to be acceptable. Most importantly it just doesn’t have to be that way. Trijicon could change it or offer an alternative. Meanwhile slightly less durable units have fixed that problem and are doing an excellent job st half the price. Works for me.
     
  19. bikerdoc

    bikerdoc Moderator Staff Member

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    Plant+brainy+terrible+deer+trigger+medium+mentionlist+gunfetish_befa9b_6942423.jpg
    For comic relief I found this abomination on another site
     
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  20. Coal Dragger

    Coal Dragger Member

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    Dude monthly battery changes are completely unnecessary on any decent red dot sight. If you have one that needs that frequency of battery change then there is something wrong with the optic. An RMR will run for about 2 years continuously turned on off of the CR2032 so this idiotic notion that you should change a battery after roughly 1/24th of its life is just stupid.

    Do you change your engine oil after 208 miles when the OCI calls for 5K? For that matter do you toss your car battery after 2-3 months (assuming a decent automobile battery will last 4-5 years)?

    I have an old Aimpoint Comp M2 that is only on its second battery in 15 years, running all the time.

    If you want to cook up some excuse to buy cheap Chinese made garbage and support the economy of a country that wishes us ill and steals intellectual property then go ahead. I guess saving a few $$$ is all that matters right?
     
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