Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login
Posted: 4/6/2002 1:33:02 PM EDT
Just wondering if there is anyone out there who is willing to extol the virtues of A1 sights. I know A2s were developed as an upgrade to A1s, and I, myself, find it easier to zero with A2s, but I vaguely remember someone on this site praising the A1 sights for their durability and lower likelihood of loseing zero inadvertently. To anyone willing to comment or elaborate on this, I thank you in advance.

Cloak-
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 2:08:27 PM EDT

I have a 9mm upper that has A1 sights on it. I can see no real reason for A2 sights on that upper.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 2:33:34 PM EDT
The only virtue of the A1 sight is that it is less likely to be accidentaly moved. But frankly, considering how unlikely it is for an A2 sight to be accidentally moved, I think the point is moot. The only time I can see this being a problem is with untrained or inexperienced operators who may have difficulity in keeping their hands of knobs, wheels, and shiny objects. Otherwise, the A2 sights are more than robust and protected enough to prevent unintended shifting under field use.

I could tolerate A1 sights on a short range weapon like a pistol caliber AR and some carbines or on an old Colt SP-1 or M-16A1 for aunthenticity's sake, but that's about it. Otherwise, I'll take that added functionality and easier use of the A2 sight.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 2:55:07 PM EDT
IMHO: The A2 is a target site and the A1 is a combat site.I have both and like the A1 the best.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 2:59:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bully:
IMHO: The A2 is a target site and the A1 is a combat site.I have both and like the A1 the best.



Thanks bully, I gotta agree. Simple, just as effective as A2 sights once zeroed, and "Murphy's Law" proof.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 3:03:01 PM EDT
I learned on A1 sights in the Army and have always liked them. A2 is nice, but once I'm Zero'd, I'm good.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 3:03:32 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cloak-n-carbine:

Originally Posted By bully:
IMHO: The A2 is a target site and the A1 is a combat site.I have both and like the A1 the best.



Thanks bully, I gotta agree. Simple, just as effective as A2 sights once zeroed, and "Murphy's Law" proof.



Ditto..........!
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 3:04:34 PM EDT
A1's are lighter as well.

With the santose zero... you are on target out to 250m.... well within battle engagement ranges, beyond that you would really want optics anyway.

I had an A2 sight that would move off zero due to recoil... it was too loose.

I dont see myself lobbing .223 out to 600m-800m myself.... But I like both platforms, and you never know.

If I wanted to pick the one that I would consider most reliable... well, the engineer in me would have to the A1, with the least moving parts.

However... if I had to pick 1, and only one... it would probably be the A2. Simply because, better to have and not need, than to need and not have.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 3:07:25 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/6/2002 3:09:57 PM EDT by Amish_Bill]
Simple is Good.

A2's might be fairly robust, but I dare you to damage an A1 without doing enough collateral damage to disable the rifle.

Oh, yeah... they're lighter too!
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 3:22:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By bully:
IMHO: The A2 is a target site and the A1 is a combat site.I have both and like the A1 the best.



Hmmm, interesting..... And to think that for all those years the Army indoctrinated me to believe that enemy combatants were indeed "targets".....
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 4:01:08 PM EDT
A1=LIGHTWEIGHT, RUGGED, FIDDLEPROOF.....
A2=Target Sights

Having said that, I have both. I prefer A1 especially on carbines. I agonized over having my M4-Dissapator built with A1 or A2. I chose A2 but still wonder if should have chosen A1 for still lighter weight.

Hey, I watch combat Missions, and they never fiddle with their A2 sights. LOL... (Actually some of those weapons have A1 on them.

It's just a choice, not a right or wrong issue, in my opinion. To each his own.

M4-AK
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 4:10:06 PM EDT
I perfer the A2....it could just be a case of going with what you know, though. I used the A2 starting in boot.
As far a combat v target--If I have to star in a new version of Heat then I will flip to the larger rear sight on the A2.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 4:20:32 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/6/2002 4:21:46 PM EDT by J_E_D]
I definately like the A1 sights better. I can't see having A2 style sights on anything with less than a 20" barrel. What's the point? Are you going to crank your M4 sights up to the 400m setting to engage someone? Is your POA/POI actually going to be close enough to matter that far away? Should you even be firing an M4 in anger at that range?

I too was exposed to the A1 sights first. They were supposed to be an improvement to the sights on the AR-10 (not the new AR-10B) which are curiously A2-ish.

This topic is one part of an ongoing rant/argument/discussion that I'm having with some friends. My side is that the AR-15 (Colt 601) was as good as it needed to be. Likewise the Colt Model 653 (M16A1 14.5" carbine) is the pinnacle of the AR carbine design.

Then again, I could be FOS.

Edited because I can't spell "far".
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 4:43:54 PM EDT

Originally Posted By J_E_D:
I definately like the A1 sights better. I can't see having A2 style sights on anything with less than a 20" barrel. What's the point? Are you going to crank your M4 sights up to the 400m setting to engage someone? Is your POA/POI actually going to be close enough to matter that far away? Should you even be firing an M4 in anger at that range?

I too was exposed to the A1 sights first. They were supposed to be an improvement to the sights on the AR-10 (not the new AR-10B) which are curiously A2-ish.

This topic is one part of an ongoing rant/argument/discussion that I'm having with some friends. My side is that the AR-15 (Colt 601) was as good as it needed to be. Likewise the Colt Model 653 (M16A1 14.5" carbine) is the pinnacle of the AR carbine design.

Then again, I could be FOS.

Edited because I can't spell "far".



Well put. It's nice to see that I'm not the only AR15/M16 purist out there...sometimes simple is just better. Different strokes for different folks, I guess.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 6:34:03 PM EDT
Okay, where is it written that you cannot be an AR-15/M-16 purist unless you prefer A1 sights? That sounds like a pretty ridiculous assumption.

I, too, first learned on the A1 sights with a Hydra-Matic M-16A1. But I instantly recognized the increased usefulness of the A2 sights when I was issued a my first Colt M-16A2 and that overall it was just a better weapon.

I can appreciate the more rugged nature of the A1 sights. But I believe most of you would be hard pressed to provide real life examples of A2 sights failing in the field or losing theor zero in the hands of trained, experienced operators.

If A1 sights are what suit your needs or float you boat, that's cool. But there is no sense in trying to deny that the A2 sights offer a higher degree of versatility and have proven themselves every bit as effective as A1 sights in the field, and probably even moreso.

By the way, everyone knowns that the M-16A2 is the embodiment of perfection in the AR world and the M4 is the perfect carbine. Get with the program, people.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 6:41:15 PM EDT
Boomer, shut the fuck up, already. No one wants to listen to your snotty, whiney, bitch attitude. That's right, I called you a BITCH...beeeyatch, actually. You do nothing more than try to stir shit with your sarcastic posts. You had already stated your preference for A2 sights about 10 posts ago. OK, you like the A2 better than the A1....that's nice, now fuck off and go to a teen chat room where arguing and shitting on people's posts and opinions is the norm.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 6:56:46 PM EDT
I prefer the A1 upper and it's simplicity while using the A2 aperture.

Ar15forfun
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 7:12:40 PM EDT
I prefer the A1 all the way.
GG
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 8:17:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cloak-n-carbine:
Boomer, shut the fuck up, already. No one wants to listen to your snotty, whiney, bitch attitude. That's right, I called you a BITCH...beeeyatch, actually. You do nothing more than try to stir shit with your sarcastic posts. You had already stated your preference for A2 sights about 10 posts ago. OK, you like the A2 better than the A1....that's nice, now fuck off and go to a teen chat room where arguing and shitting on people's posts and opinions is the norm.



I see we are again hearing from an authority on the subject of "snotty, whiney, bitch attitudes". With a good helping on immaturity thrown is as well.

Is civil discourse simply an impossibility for you?
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 8:22:49 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Boomer:

Originally Posted By cloak-n-carbine:
Boomer, shut the fuck up, already. No one wants to listen to your snotty, whiney, bitch attitude. That's right, I called you a BITCH...beeeyatch, actually. You do nothing more than try to stir shit with your sarcastic posts. You had already stated your preference for A2 sights about 10 posts ago. OK, you like the A2 better than the A1....that's nice, now fuck off and go to a teen chat room where arguing and shitting on people's posts and opinions is the norm.





I see we are again hearing from an authority on the subject of "snotty, whiney, bitch attitudes". With a good helping on immaturity thrown is as well.

Is civil discourse simply an impossibility for you?



Somebody meeds to get a life here!!!!!!
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 8:28:51 PM EDT
I like my A2 sights on my carbine, but a save money idea is to order my next rifle upper in A1 and switch receivers. Elevation is really not a factor with a carbine,but dependability of the sight when you need it is!
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 8:29:15 PM EDT
When I was a small arms repair guy in the Army back in A1 days, I had several rifles come into the shop with the rear sight "ears" either already cracked or else bent so that they cracked when we tried to bend them back. These uppers were of course replaced, but in no case did it appear that the function of the rear sight itself was affected. I suppose the zero might have been slightly off in some cases, but I doubt it.

I haven't really had a chance to look closely at A2 sights, but I have to wonder if they would come through in working order if subjected to those same impacts.

Also, people in combat do dumb things. Like those Civil War muskets that were always picked up after each battle with 5 to 10 unfired loads rammed down their barrels. The A2 sights might be nice for highly trained riflemen, but for us unwashed masses I think adjustable features of any kind are out of place in a foxhole.
Link Posted: 4/6/2002 8:39:23 PM EDT

Originally Posted By grimshaw:
I like my A2 sights on my carbine, but a save money idea is to order my next rifle upper in A1 and switch receivers. Elevation is really not a factor with a carbine,but dependability of the sight when you need it is!



Say...

If the A2 sights are calibrated for different ranges with a 20 inch barrel and standard sight radius, is there a specially calibrated range dial or wheel or whatever available for the M4's and so forth? The shorter barrel itself might not be a huge problem, but the shorter sight radius must throw everything off considerably. I suppose the shorter sight radius might compensate for the shorter barrel's reduced muzzle velocity to a certain degree, but I think it would actually be way over-compensating.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 1:29:59 AM EDT
One point not brought up is the lack of a large hole aperture for night/patrol on A1 sights. With the A2 you can Santose them and when the large hole is needed just spend 1 second adjusting them from 300-2 clicks to 300. A2 for me because of that.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 4:41:34 AM EDT
Since most of my shooting is iron sights at unknown distances I prefer the A1 sights. Once I have my combat zero I set them and forget them so the extra adjustments on the A2 are moot for my style of shooting.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 1:41:58 PM EDT
I consider A1 sights with an A2 or same plane aperture to be the best for combat. The probability of my shooting beyond battlesight zero range is approximately none.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 2:08:14 PM EDT
Heard a rumor that the A2 design, particularly the sight, was heavily influenced by USMC requirements for more 'match-like' features. The rumor was that the Army didn't particularly want the A2 to differ much from the A1. I'm not trying to stir up a new debate.

I like the A2 precisely because of its 'match-like' features. I won't be taking my Colt MT or RR M4gery into combat so the A2 fits my firing range existence. I acknowledge the 'KISS' remarks of those with a tactical bent.

For 'round the home' contingencies, I have both rifles 'Santosed' and like the ability to switch apertures and retain POA=POI. They are stored with the large aperture up and the elevation adjustment at 3/800 and 3/600 respectively.

Cheers,
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 2:30:06 PM EDT
The A1 sights are simple and fine for combat use. The A2 sights were at the request of the Marines because they use them for service rifle shooting. In combat, most of the time sights are to be left alone. Adjusting the front sight was hard to get people to understand though. The A2 sight is not as durable. I have seen rifles dropped on their rear sight and the elevation screw bent, making the sight crooked. At least the A1 sight would have been shootable, even if the wheel was bent so that is could not be adjusted any more. The rifle was lighter as well. Personally the A1 rifle with a free float handguard would be perfection.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 2:34:34 PM EDT
What everyone needs: A1 sight setup with the A2 (target and ghost ring) actual sight installed.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 2:36:30 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Chairborne_Ranger:
What everyone needs: A1 sight setup with the A2 (target and ghost ring) actual sight installed.


You need, not me.
GG
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 2:38:34 PM EDT
I agree with Chairborne. That is the perfect AR sight.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 2:44:21 PM EDT
Originally Posted By FALARAK:
With the santose zero... you are on target out to 250m.... well within battle engagement ranges, beyond that you would really want optics anyway.



I'm not familiar with the "santose zero" -could someone elaborate please?
We learned on A2's back in '88 at benning, then after qualifying, they switched us to old beat up A1's for the remainder of basic and infantry school.
I do not recall ever messing with the elevation or windage after zeroing it, but I do prefer the A2 front sight post. It seems clearer to me. Also I can't recall what the A1 rear aperature looked like, if it was different.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 2:49:51 PM EDT
A1 upper's are better! Less parts! easy to zero!Very Rugged!! Plus 40 Bucks Cheaper than the A2 uppers!Both my Bushmaster XM15'S have A1 uppers! I think Canada still uses A1 uppers also!I dont think I will ever go with A2. But maybe a Flat Top?
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 3:19:47 PM EDT
A1 sights with A2 aperture can not take advantage of a Santose zero and switching back and forth between large and small hole without having point of impact be off. You could if you used same plane A2 style aperture, but those are not cheap and the aperture holes are much too big. I'd go for that if they made the holes the same size as standard A2 sights
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 3:22:23 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Gun Guru:

Originally Posted By Chairborne_Ranger:
What everyone needs: A1 sight setup with the A2 (target and ghost ring) actual sight installed.


You need, not me.
GG



Oh excuse me. Who am I to tell someone called "Gun Guru" a damn thing?
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 4:25:35 PM EDT
Like many here, I learned on the M16A1, but then switched to the A2 sight for NRA Highpower competition. For a simple, field type sight, I really like the A1, although I substitute an A2 sight leaf into it and just use the large aperture, which is necessary for low light and good for quick shooting. (On a carbine at 100 yards, flipping the A2 aperture from the large hole to the small hole shifts elevation up about 8" in my testing.) The original A1 sight leaf has two smaller apertures which are both the same size; one is offset to give about a 3 MOA correction when you flip the sight to the "L" aperture. (The L aperture moves the strike of the round up about 3 MOA.") A very cheap and easy mod for A1 sights for field use is to use a 9/64ths drill bit and open up one of the apertures. That gives a smaller approximation of the A2 "ghost ring" large aperture and the point of impact will likely be pretty close inside normal short distance shooting ranges, when flipping to the smaller aperture, if someone wanted to for some reason. I tried opening one up with a larger bit, but the edges of the aperture were too thin and were hard to see. BTW, if one tries this, it's best to reparkerize the modified sight leaf if possible, rather than touch up with cold blue, to reduce glare in the sight aperture. If I were still in the military and had a choice, I'd probably go with the A2 sight as our engagements are at least as likely to be in open terrain as MOUT, and the A2 sight will let you shoot at long distance (300-600 yards) much more effectively than the A1, in my experience. (I have shot the A1 sight out to 600 yards with good results on an upper that was selected to have enough elevation correction to allow this, but many will not let you zero much further than about 500 yards.)
Hope helpful,
John
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 4:38:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By John_Feamster:
Like many here, I learned on the M16A1, but then switched to the A2 sight for NRA Highpower competition. For a simple, field type sight, I really like the A1, although I substitute an A2 sight leaf into it and just use the large aperture, which is necessary for low light and good for quick shooting. (On a carbine at 100 yards, flipping the A2 aperture from the large hole to the small hole shifts elevation up about 8" in my testing.) The original A1 sight leaf has two smaller apertures which are both the same size; one is offset to give about a 3 MOA correction when you flip the sight to the "L" aperture. (The L aperture moves the strike of the round up about 3 MOA.") A very cheap and easy mod for A1 sights for field use is to use a 9/64ths drill bit and open up one of the apertures. That gives a smaller approximation of the A2 "ghost ring" large aperture and the point of impact will likely be pretty close inside normal short distance shooting ranges, when flipping to the smaller aperture, if someone wanted to for some reason. I tried opening one up with a larger bit, but the edges of the aperture were too thin and were hard to see. BTW, if one tries this, it's best to reparkerize the modified sight leaf if possible, rather than touch up with cold blue, to reduce glare in the sight aperture. If I were still in the military and had a choice, I'd probably go with the A2 sight as our engagements are at least as likely to be in open terrain as MOUT, and the A2 sight will let you shoot at long distance (300-600 yards) much more effectively than the A1, in my experience. (I have shot the A1 sight out to 600 yards with good results on an upper that was selected to have enough elevation correction to allow this, but many will not let you zero much further than about 500 yards.)
Hope helpful,
John



Thanks for the insightful reply, John.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 6:19:00 PM EDT
I prefer the A-1 sights on all of my AR's except for my heavy barrel match gun. The A-1s are much more durable and once set, it's harder for someone to jack with them and get them out of alignment. I've seen people start twisting on the adjustment knobs of adjustable sighted rifles just as soon as the pick them up, they can't do that with an A-1.

7th
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 8:36:32 PM EDT
I really, prefer the A1 sight over the A2 sight for it's simplicity and lightweight, but I really don't like the sight picture even when I'm using an A2 aperture. The 'wings' on the A1 sight are, IMO of course, too close together and I feel like they restrict the view. Stricly a personal thing but I just don't like the view out the A1 sight.

What I would like to have is the A2 sights but replace the windage knob with an A1 style knob that is more difficult to f@ck around with and that blocks even less peripheral vision.
Link Posted: 4/7/2002 9:17:13 PM EDT
I'd sure rather work on A1 over A2 anyday. Much more simple.
Link Posted: 4/8/2002 2:43:28 AM EDT
Its the shooter not the sights-
Link Posted: 4/8/2002 7:28:33 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Chairborne_Ranger:

Originally Posted By Gun Guru:

Originally Posted By Chairborne_Ranger:
What everyone needs: A1 sight setup with the A2 (target and ghost ring) actual sight installed.


You need, not me.
GG



Oh excuse me. Who am I to tell someone called "Gun Guru" a damn thing?



Yeah, dammit, dont let it happen again...
GG
Link Posted: 4/8/2002 7:41:11 AM EDT
I've got an A2 sight, but I am curious about A1 sights.
Does anyone have a link to a good A1 sight close-up picture?

Thanks
Top Top