Backup iron sights or no?

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by Lancer, Mar 6, 2018.


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  1. Lancer

    Lancer TANSTAFL! Site Supporter+++

    I'm building another "toy" from an 80%.
    16', 5.56, folding stock, free float grip, low profile gas block, and a variety of red dot, or reticle optics to choose from.
    I should probably forgo the irons, but something just tells me to put some folders on there as backup, as I've always done. Silly, but that's the way it is....
    Thoughts, opinions, rants?
     
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  2. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    Depending on the type of optics, I would strongly recommend back ups if this is going to be used as a defensive, or fighting tool! Even the best optics can and do fail, and following ol Murph, I always have back ups! A plus that most don't know about is having your irons set to a point blank zero, and having them co witness to your primary sighting system, makes for a lot more versatile tool.
     
  3. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    Backups should be the first thing you put on any rifle. I think of "backups" as my primary and the optic as my secondary. Optics are far more fragile and make sure you get something that work's without batteries and put it on a mount that you can remove quickly.
     
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  4. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    The is no way I would own a rifle without iron sights no matter how good my optics. Besides, there are times when iron sights are far better than optics. Actually Lancer, I know you know this so I think you are trying to convince yourself that you need not spend the money LOL!!
     
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  5. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    @3M-TA3 "put it on a mount that you can remove quickly."

    That would make a really good thread for discussion. Vortex got a new Quick Disconnect that I've been reading good things about but its not cheap, $230 last time I looked. I need to purchase two so I have been dragging my feet due to cost but Spring is almost upon us here and the range will open...
     
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  6. 3M-TA3

    3M-TA3 Cold Wet Monkey Site Supporter++

    Expensive QD mounts mostly allow retention of zero when you take them off and put them back on. You can find QD mounts more inexpensively that allow you to remove the optic quickly without tools, but then need to rezero later. The latter are perfectly fine with me - all I want is to remove a broken or otherwise impaired optic quickly so I can access my iron sights before I get killed. Plenty of time to futz with a replacement optic later.
     
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  7. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    @3M-TA3 No, I definitely want 'retention of zero' at least on my main rifle but thinking about the second one now...yeah, maybe I can get away with it. I don't want to steal @Lancer thread but would appreciate any personal recommendations of non-retention of zero QDs that you can pass my way.
     
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  8. Lancer

    Lancer TANSTAFL! Site Supporter+++

    :) Not the money - I have number of sets of decent quality folding irons, and to Ur-Ki's point: some of my others are set up for co-witness. Typically the irons are battle sight zero'd at 25 yards, with optics at 75 yd.
    Heck: I could even put a standard A2 front with built in gas block on it, a Magpul folder for the rear, and a Vortex red dot. That should get some odd looks at the range.
    Having tons of bits around makes decisions difficult some times...
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
  9. Lancer

    Lancer TANSTAFL! Site Supporter+++

    Hi-Jack away! Info is good.
    I have an American Defense Recon-S QL that is good - ~$140-ish if I remember correctly, and a NcStar AR15 QR, from amazon that's junk. The Recon holds a good zero IF you put it back on the same slots. The NcStar is pure convenience and you have to start over.
     
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  10. RouteClearance

    RouteClearance Monkey+++ Site Supporter

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  11. Lancer

    Lancer TANSTAFL! Site Supporter+++

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  12. RouteClearance

    RouteClearance Monkey+++ Site Supporter

    There are folding units available also. Troy Industries makes a set that is just as expensive/robust.
     
  13. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    We did the off set irons quite a long time ago, but with the quality of the folders available now, there isn' a lot of reason to have the off sets, unless your trying to use a more specific type of weapon for a multitude of uses beyond what it was originally intended. Perfect example was a M-40 That I was issued, because it would be my primary weapon, and it was equippd with multiple optics, it was decided to install a secondary iron sight system on that rifle, so we put a long rail down the right side of the stock and installed pistol sights on it, worked a charm, and kept every thing very low profile, close to the center line of the rifle, and lowerd the snag possibilities. Damn slick set up if I do say so my self! Lol
    As to a good quality QD mount, both Leupold and Nikon have mounts that will work and retain a good zero, I have used a Nikon on my intensifier and been completey satisfied with its quality. There are others out there, GG&G makes one, as does SWFA and Hi-Lux, so you do have options. My Baby Brother just installed the UTG mount on his, and it has the benefit of being able to cover the rear BUIS when not in use, but requires removing the optic to use it, not my favorite thing, I would prefer to co witness, but his optic has a very narrow eye relief that covers his BUIS, so that's the price he has to pay to run that Optic!
     
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  14. Bishop

    Bishop Monkey+++

    Always have iron sights and know how to use them.
     
  15. Bandit99

    Bandit99 Monkey+++ Site Supporter+

    I use fold downs. I went with the Magpul Pro's for my primary rifle and like them a lot. Think they ran about $140-$150, can't remember exactly. I know one could purchase more expensive ones but they do the job well and I've no complaints.

    You know, I have been a bit disappointed in a recent Leupold purchase; namely, a pair of binoculars. They just can't compare to a pair of Vortex at the same price. I was so impressed with the Vortex that I purchased them on the spot; however, I did keep the Leupold too. I never looked too much at Nikon but they have definitely been making optics a long time. They cameras are the gold standard. I will check them out.
     
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  16. Ura-Ki

    Ura-Ki Grudge Monkey

    NIKON have always been top shelf with their high end line up of optics, the Air Force even issues them to flight crews, notably the A-10 pilots, and they are awesome. I have yet to run into a Nikon product that wasn't a good investment, as long as you stick to the Mid-High end! Nikon makes the glass for the Mil M-22 Mituro Binos, and those are stunning! Picked up a pair of referbs for Dad and my self! Nikon and it's comercial line IKON supply glass to many Asian high end optics manufactures, and have for many years!
     
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  17. ghrit

    ghrit Bad company Administrator Founding Member

    Yup. [winkthumb]
     
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  18. duane

    duane Monkey+++

    My primary sights have always been iron. Over the years I have used and will continue to use various glass sights and have played with night, IR, etc. but they are always over iron. Over the years I have had scopes fog up, lose zero when dropped, require specialized batteries or maintenance and calibration, have all different types of reticles, didn't hold up well in unpressurized airplanes or crawling thru the swamps, etc. Something to be said about picking up a pre 1900 weapon, load it, shoot it 10 times to check the zero, and be set up for the long haul. I know of no iron sight that will let you shoot accurately at night, long distances, etc, but at my age and lifestyle, I do not foresee the need for anything over 100 yards and quick target acquisition and long run reliability with semi trained individuals are higher priorities than extreme long range accuracy.
     
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  19. Motomom34

    Motomom34 Monkey+++

    Listen to your gut. Red dots can run out of batteries or break but iron sights are more dependable. If you can put them on then do it because I think if your fancy red-dot breaks, you will be happy you put on the irons.
     
  20. AD1

    AD1 Monkey+++

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