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Posted: 11/16/2002 11:20:35 AM EDT
Before I bought my first AR, an experienced shooter told me to practice and become proficient with my iron sights before buying an expensive scope or red-dot. After many many hours of shooting I've become so accustomed to using iron sights, and can acquire targets with them so rapidly, that thus far I haven't seen the [b]need[/b] to purchase an optic (though I've often been tempted to put an ML2 on my flattop). It seems like every picture I see of US service rifles have scopes on them. Even the IDF rifles I see have at the very least a Reflex II. Is it the standard now for the US to put scopes on all their rifles? Am I behind the times?
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:25:32 AM EDT
I shoot CMP( formerly DCM) and the ONLY time I bolt a scope on the AR is when I'm working up a handload. The ONLY scope I own is a cheapie someone tossed out, and it's good enough for working up loads. In my opinion, if you can't shoot with iron sights, you can't shoot, period. gfb
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:33:56 AM EDT
Well said piccolo, I agree 100% !! I don't have any optics for my AR's and really have'nt wanted or needed them. I love shooting with iron sights and will only use optics if and when my eyes degenerate to that stage where optics would be necessary. Don't get me wrong, I have many friends who have optics of all sorts on their rifles and they are really fun to shoot. If I had the spare cash, I would love to have an upper with optics just for fun. I think part of the reason you see scopes on the "operators" rifles is for CQB use and it's much easier to train someone to put a red dot on a target than it is to train him to use iron sights.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:39:43 AM EDT
Originally Posted By SPECTRE: I think part of the reason you see scopes on the "operators" rifles is for CQB use and it's much easier to train someone to put a red dot on a target than it is to train him to use iron sights.
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Uh, spectre, I think that anyone who is known to be an "operator" probably already knows how to use iron sights...
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:42:20 AM EDT
5 other friends and I STILL all use iron sights. We are all sold on them. We all can shoot very well with them. We've kicked around the idea of throwing scopes on or 16" and 20" barreled AR's, but everyone of us decides it would be smarter to buy a varmitor (you know, the one that's MENT to have a scope on it) and then out a scope on it. I don't know fellows, it's been over a year, and we're all still irons. Local shop has one and they shot 50 rounds in a row @ 175 yards, ALL TOUCHING!!!!!!! All I can say is WOW.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:43:31 AM EDT
Originally Posted By hielo:
Originally Posted By SPECTRE: I think part of the reason you see scopes on the "operators" rifles is for CQB use and it's much easier to train someone to put a red dot on a target than it is to train him to use iron sights.
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Uh, spectre, I think that anyone who is known to be an "operator" probably already knows how to use iron sights...
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I agree, and did'nt mean it that way. I meant that it's probably much easier to train someone who has little or no firearms experience to use a red dot than to use irons. As far as the operators go, I also think target aquisition under the stress of CQB is much easier with a red dot.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:46:53 AM EDT
Ok, my AR has a Holosight on it, but also flip-up irons, and I use them more than the Holosight. My FAL has irons only. My .308 didn't exactly come with irons, so on it, I have to have the scope.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:49:18 AM EDT
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:50:30 AM EDT
My Remington 700 30-06 has steel sights. Does that count? :D
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:50:49 AM EDT
Originally Posted By brouhaha: What's a scope?
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A mouthwash, or that thing they stick up your butt to look for "abnormalities" [BD]
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:53:10 AM EDT
give me an 20" barrel and iron sights anyday. ever since basic training,,,,,i believe there is no better feeling than lying prone, using a sandbag for support, and shooting targets using iron sights...... this post has made me want to get my SP1 out of the safe!
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 12:06:33 PM EDT
I am an iron sight fan as well. Less expensive, and if the only way someone can shoot is with a scope, they are screwed if 5 seconds into a fight the scope gets damaged. Iron sights are way more reliable. I also second that if you can't shoot with iron sights, you can't shoot at all.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 12:10:37 PM EDT
All of my AR uppers except the 24" varmint barreled one are irons.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 12:12:41 PM EDT
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 12:18:29 PM EDT
For plate shooting I use a Kobra. But I still go back to irons sometimes to make sure I don't get out of practice. I like both. For speed I can beat the optics, I have trouble still shooting both eyes open with irons. For target I'd rather use irons anyday.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 12:22:35 PM EDT
If you want a really good reason to us iron sites go shooting in the rain. I have never had a optical site that would not fog or at the very least get blurry. And don't talk to me about flip up backup sites if you cant see threw the scope because of all the water that has collected on the lens then you cant see the front site to use your backup sites. I have had this happen to me during training. A gun hanging from a sling seems to be perfect for collecting rain.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 12:24:57 PM EDT
I have both. ML2 on my M4gery and irons on my SP1, Oly CAR and DSA STG. I will be putting a scope on what ever long range rifle I get (obviously).
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 12:30:33 PM EDT
Unless absolutely necessary (extreme long range), I use Iron. Scopes aren't bad for plinking, but for hunting, by the time you get the scope up and can actually see through it, the deer(or animal) is gone. any idiot can put a crosshair on a target. Iron sights are more durable, all weather, quick to line up....
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 1:06:32 PM EDT
I use iron sights all the time, even on my little Ruger 10-22. Recently, I got a Leupold Gilmore Red Dot for my M4, and I took it back immediately since I was better with iron sights! I am looking for a good long range scope though....
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 1:07:58 PM EDT
Another vote for iron sights: I don't even own a scope, although I wouldn't mind a ZF model of German WW2 vintage mounted on one of my boomsticks.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 1:15:02 PM EDT
I just finished a two day carbine marksmanship class using iron sights on my AR and AK. I made a few guys look bad with their high dollar optics. I can hit an 8" steel plate at 200yds. Didnt know till I tried. Shooting on the move is easier with a red dot though.JMHO
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 1:21:27 PM EDT
Originally Posted By piccolo: In my opinion, if you can't shoot with iron sights, you can't shoot, period. gfb
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What he said.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 1:30:53 PM EDT
Iron sight shooting is an essential skill, and it's also quite a lot of fun. But there is certainly a place for a 'scope on my rifle, too. It's essential when I want to quantify the performance of my handloads (They group tight enough that I can't see the group unless I move the crosshair off the point of aim...that's not bad! ) and I also use a scope off the sandbags to check that my iron sights are dead on. Since I'm usually shooting at your ordinary black centered target, it's not always easy to see those little holes in a black target with no backlighting so the scope helps a lot. I like using a scope just as much as I like shooting with iron sights. In fact, using a scope has made me a better shooter with iron sights, too. It's very important not to become dependent on scopes at any range where iron sights are sufficient, as scopes can break or be knocked off zero, as we well know. Iron sights are reliable and don't usually break. I tested myself by shooting offhand from a standing position at 100 yards, with a scope for one group and iron sights for the other. There really wasn't much difference in the resulting groups. I ran the same test from the sandbags, though, and the results were different. I blew one ragged hole in the target with the 'scope, while my iron sighted target showed a group that was tight but was by no means a one hole group. Scopes are for when you have the time and demand the precision it takes to shoot a dime sized target at 100 yards. If the target is a tennis ball, no scope is necessary. CJ
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 1:42:42 PM EDT
For me, I always have enough money for guns, but never enough money to put scopes on them. Plus Fred SGN is an evil influence on me and I do most of my practice with iron sights.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 1:58:30 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/16/2002 2:00:04 PM EDT by Venerated]
I can see where for CQB a red-dot might acquire faster. I guess it's situation specific. The last time I went to the range I shot my friend's AR with his Comp ML2 at 25 yards. His 4 moa dot covered up the circle on the target so I felt I wasn't shooting as precisely as I could. Sure enough, I then shot with my iron sights and grouped better. So my personal belief is that for anything beyond CQB range (whatever that is, I'm guessing 0-25 feet?) [b]red-dots[/b] aren't practical. Or maybe practical but just not the best choice.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 2:13:07 PM EDT
i wanted to build an m4 and put a eotech on it. i am almost finished with it and i changed my mind. i would rather use iron sights.thats how my other ars are
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 2:35:07 PM EDT
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 2:52:39 PM EDT
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 3:06:14 PM EDT
I only use irons.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 8:42:29 PM EDT
The ACOG on my AR10 is the best thing since sliced bread. That range finder is GREAT! [img]http://omega.virtualfocus.com/liteimages/3x32onM16.jpg[/img]
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 10:07:55 PM EDT
The guy that can shoot well with irons will shoot just as well with a scope! And If it is a high lift scope,If the fog moves in just as you remove your covers,you are blinded unless you can shoot under your scope! I shot expert with the M1 and sharpshooter with the M1A,and with iron sights the M1A at close range pop up targets you aimed low because the bullet would be up at close range! But at 460 meters when you aimed the sights at a pop up target at that distance and squeezed off the trigger and saw that man sized target plop over backward,was quite a thrill! So if your eyes are up to it and you can put the iron where it belongs,what else is needed! But If you are shooting out past the maximum effective range, yes a scope would be appreciated! Or if you are optically challenged then a scope is a must! Bob [:D]
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 10:13:32 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Aimless: I have a scope on my AR. It is a fixed 4x mounted on the carry handle the mount allows me to still use the iron sights. Although when shooting with irons one focuses on the front sight, even with glasses my vision is not what it once was. I am more likely to be able to hit something at 100 or 200 yards with a scope, so I have one. I have shot deer with scopes on my rifles and I have never had a problem using scopes in rain and snow. The deer appeared to be just as dead as the ones I shot with iron sites.
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I have one of those 4X scopes on my A/R also! Took forever to get it to where I could bust a quarter at 90ft! But still better than I could do with my naked eye! Bob [:D]
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 10:51:10 PM EDT
My 20 inch AR is iron sights.. my next one will be an M4gery flat top with a red dot on it. If I ever get a bolt action rifle or M1A I'll scope it... since it would just be for long range precision shooting.
Link Posted: 11/17/2002 12:03:30 AM EDT
Iron Sites for me,,sure my eyes are not what they once were,,,but at 200 yards with my M-4 I'll hit your head,,maybe not exactly in the no reflex zone but I'll get you attention if it does not. Shit 200 ,,it makes me sick how close that is,,I once saw a pathetic guy and his friends shooting a .50 cal. at a Long Island range that even though thay could have shot @ a mere 200 yards,,chose to shoot at 50 yards,,imagine that? I was shooting center mass with my shotgun slugs @ 200. you know some of them had the tops of 5 gal.paint cans to shoot and with my m-4 and Ak would hit them and when they rolled I'd hit them.. from across Calverton at the 200 yard portion of the range. But imagine shooting a 50 cal at such a pathetic distance? Anyway keep it simple,,Murphy's law,,,,fantasy is a whole lot differant than reality. God,,a fifty ,,@ 50 or 100 is a disgrace. remember BRASS,,train,,muscle memory,,fire discpline,,attitude,, etc. and ggetting back to the tops of the buckets it was nothing almost embassing to miss them ,,I can't believe the level of in compentance that exists out there. A whole lot of people out there (with rifles and pistols) scare the shit out of me,,but my lips are sealed,,but they scare me no the less,,
Link Posted: 11/17/2002 2:46:10 AM EDT
I was working up a load for my NM armalite once. I borrowed a carry handle scope, and set out to test some loads. I did this at 200 yards off a bench. My groups were bigger than I liked, so i thought something was wrong with it ( it was a cheapie tasco). I took off the scope, and switched to the open sights. I shot the exact same group! I showed this to the guy I borrowed the scope from ( a very experienced high power shooter). He told me that it is not unusual to shoot just as well with iron sights, as you could with a scope! Since then, I havent bothered with a scope on my AR to test loads. Scopes have their place though, especially on varmint guns, etc.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 3:04:50 AM EDT
Well folks in HSLD units still have to qualify at least once a year with irons. But most Live Fires are done using scopes. The entire army is going to the M4, but the SOPMOD is still just for SO and RD units.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 3:44:53 AM EDT
I do not own a scope or red dot sight. It's a money thing.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 4:17:23 AM EDT
Shooting on the move a RED DOT cant be beat. Running and Gunning [:D]
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 5:23:17 AM EDT
Yup, as long as my eyes hold out. AB
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 5:59:38 AM EDT
I use iron sights simply because I dont have a scope for the ol' AR yet.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 7:16:23 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/18/2002 7:25:12 AM EDT by cluster]
Irons.. simply cause I cant afford a scope.. how the hell can scopes cost more than my rifle..? and when i do get cash for the scope.. I end up buying lowers.. [:)]
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 7:30:30 AM EDT
I shoot a "Practical Rifle" match once a month with target from 15 to 200 yards. I've been shooting it for the past three years and we usually get 50 shooters a month. A decent sampling. With notable exceptions, the shooters who are using optics beat the shooters without. This seems to run across all skill levels. For those of you who don't know Oregon. To live here, you need to enjoy shooting in the rain. The optics shooters didn't seem to be too affected. I, however, had a problem keeping my the (small) aperture on my rear sight clear of water. Interesting, huh? I just got a Holosight to T&E from the nice folks at EOTech. I shoot an A2 carbine and mounted it on my Knight's handguards. Seems like it will work well. I'll give you all some feedback after I have a chance to run it. -Z
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 8:56:07 AM EDT
I would agree with those who say it is important to know how to use your iron sights. With that said, I own a colt M4 flat-top and have placed an EOTech 552 with GG&G back up iron sights. I can acquire and shoot more accurately with greater speed with the EOTech. Just my .02 worth. I own a SA M1A and would love to scope it out for long distance precise shooting. Ralph in Fresno
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 12:20:05 PM EDT
I think dot type optics are considerably faster than irons. And certainly much better in poor light. But they are really not any more accurate. In fact, I shoot tighter groups with irons than with my Eotech or Aimpoint.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 12:56:00 PM EDT
Just taught my wife to shoot using an Ultra Dot. Hell of a lot faster than teaching her iron sights. She hit 10's and X's. My eyes ain't what they used to be and some of those p-dogs are 300+ yards out. I'll stick to my scopes. I have an A2 with irons, so I am not totally without, but I'll hit better with a scope.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 1:01:52 PM EDT
I agree that you should know how to shoot with iron sights. I'm also a fan of iron sights and feel very comfortable with them. However I do see why the Aim-Points and EOtechs can provide a speed advantage in CQB. When the SHTF the guys who shoots first usually wins. Not to mention the Aim-Points and EOtech are parallax free so you do not have to have the proper cheek weld, posture, etc. to make a fast hit. That property could be priceless in a fire fight...
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 2:15:35 PM EDT
I went through Urban Rifle at Thunder Ranch in September with a reflex on my AR and I have to admit that I used the irons more than the reflex. For close in work (25 yards or less) the reflex was pretty good, but even moving I did better with the irons.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 2:34:35 PM EDT
Reflex-type sites are generally better for CQB. They make for rapid acquistion. Better ones, especially EOTEchs, work better in a variety of tactical situations that are not typically encountered at the range, mainly; -Shooting from the weak side around cover; -Paralax-free acquisition because of a necessarily screwed up stance (because of armor, trauma plates, and tight confines, to name a few); -Low-light sight acquisition; -Shooting from prone around a helmet, headset, heavy armor; -Wearing gas masks. That is some of why the "operator" types prefer them. If you aren't going after violent felons in raids, or rescuing hostages, or gassing barricaded persons out of houses, then this stuff has less importance, and you can get by fine on irons. Most "operators" learn on irons, and can operate fine with them, but winning is often about acquiring those small edges and using them. A reflex optic is another edge.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 3:10:51 PM EDT
I use iron sights on my AR, bought the A2 upper because I couldn't afford a good scope and because I originally intended to take in DCM matches with it. But I have a scope on my Mauser. And I really would like to have a scope on my AR for the longer distance, with maginification its so much easier to pick out a target, or part of a target, at distance. And I have used the Reflex on one of my Uncles rifles before too, and it ROCKS for off hand shooting for close quarters or moving targets. But off of a bench, on a known distance range, there is no benefit to the red dot. And if your goal is to shoot the tightest possible group it is probably a hinderance because the size of the dot is easily bigger than the group the rifle can shoot. Havent tried anything yet with a chevron or post or circle and dot recticle so I cant comment on them. If your goal is to shoot the smallest possible group over a known distance, iron sights are quite good and the only thing better would be a conventional magnifying scope with a conventional fine crosshair recticle- because that will obscure the least amount of the target, less even than a normal post. I would not discount scopes until you have tried shooting popup or moving targets on a unknown/variable distance range. Now Clint Smith at TR is not a big fan of optics. He has used iron sights for most of his work in his career. He has little trouble shooting over variable distances and at popup and moving targets with irons. And some of his instructers are good at it to. But guess what? THEY OWN THUNDER RANCH they can practice this any time they want to on the best simulation equipment in the country. Just like the trick shooters, if you spend enough time and rounds you can become accomplished at doing just about anything with a firearm. For the majority, if you can afford a optic you are better off with it. The extra $1500 dollars in ammo would not improve your performance as much, especally if you do not also have ready access to nessacary ranges and the instructors to coach you while you are firing that ammo.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 4:16:13 PM EDT
Irons on the AR. LOVE shooting irons. Optics on the PSS. MUST have optics when precision shooting at anything over 300 yards. Hell, I can hardly see the 4" gong on my range at 420 yards without the scope, much less hit it (which I did regularly this weekend with the PSS) [:)] Man sized target hits center of mass out to 350-400 with irons isn't all that tough but for any precsion work at long range optics are a must. Of course, use of the AR at those ranges where optics are needed really isn't warranted anyway unless you are shooting groundhogs.
Link Posted: 11/18/2002 4:31:29 PM EDT
Originally Posted By RipMeyer: The ACOG on my AR10 is the best thing since sliced bread. That range finder is GREAT! [url]http://omega.virtualfocus.com/liteimages/3x32onM16.jpg[/url]
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Yeah but, damn! [shock] those bad boys ARE spendy. AB
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