One has to change with the times, especially with those areas of technology that can improve our lives. The question is does that technology actually improve our lives and what is just a ploy to liberate funds from our wallet.
The only true answer is try these things out, preferably on someone else’s dime. Of course you need to reciprocate and let others try your new toys so they can decide if it will really improve some aspect of their lives.
With this in mind I’ve taken advantage of any offers to try someone’s miracle blaster with reflex dot.
Reflex sights aren’t anything new. They were invented in 1900 and didn’t see much use in WWI. During the Second World War they were used on attack aircraft as well as tanks and other heavy weapon systems where the operator needed to engage fast moving targets.
Early pistol and rifle models had drawbacks, chiefly power consumption. The Weaver Quik-Point attempted to get around the battery problem by relying on sunlight, but you had to depend on perfect weather conditions for reliable performance. Despite these problems Bull-eye shooters quickly adopted the dot. After all, everyone was already lugging a telescope around in their gunbox, so what’s a few extra button batteries?
And it was worth it! When I shot bulls-eye Aimpoint and Tasco were leading the charge and simply using one added 10 points to your average.
The original dots were big and bulky, but the discovery of light diodes changed things. Today's small reflex sights could be mounted on defensive pistols. These dots are durable and hold their zero very well. Some of the early ones were set up so the dot would come on when you drew the gun and stay on until you turned it off. Just a battery saving option. The new ones sip electricity and run continuously for over a year. Give yourself a button battery every year for Christmas and you never need to worry about turning your sight off.
So when my friend Rich offered me a filled magazine and his new pistol with a dot, damn straight I shot it.
The first couple of shoots worked like a charm. Put the red dot on the target, press the trigger and get a resounding BONG! from the steel. After two rounds I got cocky.
Starting at the low ready I brought the gun up, place the red dot on the steel and proceeded to shoot over the top of it. Let’s try that again.
Up, dot on steel target, press trigger and shoot the backstop over the top of it. Must be jerking the trigger. Do it over.
Up, dot on steel target, carefully press trigger and shot the backstop again. This isn’t going very well.
|There it is. A red dot as clear as day and centered in the reflex housing. Or is it?|
And then I figured it out. Rich has a red dotted front sight and I was holding the gun so the front sight was centered in the reflex sight while the red diode dot was over the top of the target….Haaa! I got it now.
|The lower red dot is the front sight while the upper dot is the true aiming point. No wonder I was shooting high!|
The rest of shots were rewarded with a clang.
Rich tells me that using a suppressor front and rear sight (they are taller) will be coaxial with the red dot. This makes using the dot easier to find. Rich also tells me most competitors don’t use the suppressor sights as they fill about a third of the reflex sight.
I got to admit I use a dot on my rifle as it makes hitting easier, and I’m likely to add a dot to one of my larger carry guns. I just got to find the right one.
Now for something completely different!
I’m also prepping for Greenport Tactical Association’s single stack classic. It’s open only to 1911 .45 acp single stack pistols. I replaced my old grips for a set of Magpul MOE grips and I think this will give me a better grip. We’ll see.
|I suspect the groove will also assist you reaching the mag release, but I like locking my thumb into it.|
One thing for sure I’m using one of Ricky’s kydex holsters and mag carriers in that match. Ricky makes very nice holsters and he’ll work with you to get it right. Check his facebook page for more.
|I like the way he's curved the mag carries so they hug you waist better. The workmanship is excellent!|
I spend about an hour and 100 rounds, practicing magazine changes from slidelock. I also threw in a little drawing and remembering to take the safety off and I don’t think I’ll embarrass myself too much. The purpose of shooting matches, besides the fun, is dealing with the stress. It’s good practice.