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AR optics/sights what do you prefer?

Discussion in 'General Firearm Discussion' started by whphel, Nov 17, 2009.

  1. whphel

    whphel Lake Stevens Member

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    What type of sights do you prefer and why do you prefer it.

    I like iron sights but there are so many options availabe for the AR platform I would like to try a few to augment with the irons. I would like to have a scope so I can shoot tighter groups out further yet be able to point and shoot with iron's. Ive looked through halo sight and the more I think about it it seems usless (why not use the irons). Anyway just looking for some of you opinions and here why you back up that choice for you. Thanks guys!
     
  2. The Cheese

    The Cheese somewhere special Member

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    1-4x scopes are great (burris, Leupold, even the Millet) and they give you a bit of versatility. If $$ is no object an ACOG with the chevron reticle is fantabulous. You wouldn't think it would rock close in, but they do. Red dot wise I would go with a 2moa Aimpoint simple because of the battery life. Eotechs aren't bad for the $$ though. I am still not sold on the whole side flopping magnifier for the 1x red dots. It just seems silly and by the time you spend $4-500 or what ever for an aimpoint or eotech brand magnifier you could have had an ACOG which is better optic that the other 2 hands down IMO.

    That said, I do like iron sights. They are great and everyone should be proficient in their usage of them. But all of the optics listed above will increase your speed and accuracy. Some more than others, but you just need to know how to use them properly as well. With optics its kind of dependent on what you want to do with your rifle. Long range, accuracy for varmints would necessitate a different optic than one for CQB drills. But for all round usefulness, a 4x max seems to be the ticket (for me anyway). Variable is nice, but I kinda like nice glass in a compact package.
     
  3. Benny503

    Benny503 Grants Pass Well-Known Member

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    Acog and lasermax togeethet would be perfect for day and nite.
     
  4. the4thshake

    the4thshake Portland Active Member

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    For a battle rifle you can't beat the dependability of irons. Optics add weight and are one more thing to possibly go wrong. With that said, optics can improve your shooting over irons. Your choice in optic needs to fit your the intended of the purpose of your gun. There is no "do all" optic. What is your intended purpose for this AR?
     
  5. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    Just for me an AR is a battle rifle and a varmint gun is a recreational gun which has a bolt action. :thumbup:

    My first choice for the AR is the iron sights. When I put optics on mine, it's a shotgun scope (due to rugged build and better eye relief needed on the AR) with either a see-through or flip over mount so I can still access the irons for close work and in case the scope fails. Choice of power and variable or fixed power on the scope is a matter of personal choice.

    $.02
     
  6. Gunner3456

    Gunner3456 Salem Well-Known Member

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    BTW, my I've posted before that my son qualified expert in NG boot camp with the M-16 with iron sights shooting at pop up and moving targets which varied in distance from 25 - 500 yards. Granted, that was some years ago. He recommends that you sight the AR dead on at 250 yards, and it will drop 2 meters or about the height of a man at 500 yards. Using that formula, he "guaranteed" me that he could hit a man sized target in the head with iron sights at 500 yards. If you happen to be a bit low, it's the neck or chest.

    $.02
     
  7. PDXGS

    PDXGS Aloha... yes, Aloha, Oregon Member

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    I love my iron match sights on the DCM rifle but the 3 x ACOG on my tactical match rifle rocks. Get proficient out to 400 yds with irons before you go to glass.
     
  8. Selftest

    Selftest Bellingham, WA Member

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    All advice posted here was good, so I'll throw in some rumor and conjecture to liven the place up.

    Aimpoint: Great battle sight, augments the irons. The biggest reason for the RDS? You only aim through one tube, instead of the back/front iron combo. Faster shots, quicker follow up.

    EOTech: Do some research on these. They are popular, but they get a bad rap for a number of reasons. Usually the bad reputation is due to the sight turning off of its own accord. They typically have a set number of hours before aut0-shutdown, to conserve battery time. Now, on a plinker, probably not a big deal. On a dedicated battle rifle? If you're ever gonna shoot at somebody, you might want your sight to be on. Aimpoints usually get the nod here because of thir incredible battery life (5 years or something insane) and they don't even have an off button. Always on means always ready.

    ACOG: Very well favored. Some, in a ciommunity full of true operators, dislike the magnification for CQB distances, and argue that it slows them down. This is where the next come in...

    Magnifier: seems to fill the role of distance/CQB nicely. Flips out of the way when not in use. Yes, RDS and magnifier combo is as much as an ACOG, usually, but you get the best of both worlds.
     
  9. BooKilla

    BooKilla Portland, OR Member

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    Eotech 557.G23FTS in my opinion is the best combo sight made. Night vision, long range, close range and light. Not cheap though.
     
  10. MountainBear

    MountainBear Sweet Home, OR Well-Known Member

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    I guess it depends on what type of AR you are building. If you want something for close ranges (I stop short of saying CQB, because honestly, how many of us will ever employ our AR's for anything but plinking), the the EoTech sights are great. I've used them and really like them. I prefer the sight picture to that of the Aimpoint scopes. The EoTech just works better for my eyes.

    If you are building something similar to a designated marksman rifle, there are a couple options. The 1-4x24 scopes from Burris, Leupold, Millett, and others are good options. The new Leupold Mark AR scoped looks interesting if you don't want an illuminated reticle, especially since you can have the custom shop put whichever reticle you like on it (I'm partial to the german #1). If money is no object, spend a grand and put a nice ACOG on the gun. No batteries plus illumination is a good thing.

    Whichever you choose, I like a high quality quick release mount for the scope with fold away back up iron sights. You never know when the sighting system will fail and its a good thing to be able to dump the optic, flip the irons and keep shooting. None of my AR's are without iron sights of some sort.
     
  11. Ding

    Ding Lighter Side of Oz Active Member

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    irons,not much can go wrong with them..
     
  12. whphel

    whphel Lake Stevens Member

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    I have many guns some iron some scope.

    When I started shooting as a 5yr old my dad would only let me use irons all types and I can use them very well.

    I do alot of target shooting mostly small bore (these days with the price of amo) with scope and like shooting very tight groups at long distance; however, this is my first black rifle I bought it mainly for if TSHTF, protect my family and property, and to take some tactical traing courses and then participate in some matches.

    Thanks for all of your guys input it helps. It also makes me realize Im gona need to get another AR. :) Can always use a back up and can build the second for long distance varmint hunting.

    I think this rifle a "Stag" will be the tactical rifle. So I will go with Irons for sure and an aimpoint with quick release mount.
     
  13. Riot

    Riot Benton County, Washington Well-Known Member

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    This is what I have...

    It's a Trijicon TA01NSN with a Doctor reflex sight on top...I also have a flip up rear sight underneigth it as a back-up if all three fail (but I have to remove the scope). The red dot stays on for 5 years (and I can attest to that accuracy of battery life). The scope is AWESOME and the recticle illuminates at night.

    This covers both near and far...I brought this baby on a deployment to Afghanistan. It's costly...but it was worth every penny! I bought this stuff seperately and put it together myself...I think you can actually save money now if you buy them all together.
     
  14. timbernet

    timbernet Boring, Oregon Member

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    I'll say irons....

    I love the ACOG -- tried one on a DPMS .308 AR... LOVED IT!!! But spending more on the optic than the gun.... eh.... no thanks.
     
  15. Oohrah

    Oohrah NorthwestSouthern Oregon Coast Member

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    My young eyes did extremely well with both!!! However, there are no choices, as you can only shoot as good as you see. Scopes are all presently better than the old days. Spend what you can afford and are happy with. I have both, and listened to opinions of if they don't cost twice as much as the rifle, they are not much good. On the lower priced scopes, I had one return on a low end Bushnel, The horizontial crosshair broke mounted on a Win. M100, in the 308 caliber. Went back to the store, and was handed a new one, that remains in good order on the same rifle. The date was early 70's.
    Most of the lower end are China/Jap. Don't think Redfield remains, but Weaver, and some of the other not so cheap price wise are still sold and Jap / China. BSA that many claim is crap, are on five rifles in the Contender varibles that get a lot of use and have held up well! Sure, clearer optics on a $2000 one, but if it does what I require, someone else can go for it.
    Close up the various Dots work well, and some even come with different sized, dial a dot. Distances any scope that you like, will work. The higher mag ones, eye relief becomes critical, and all kinds of movement will be seen, that lower mag doesn't show. If not for target work, a 3 to 9 works for most circumstances. Keep it at the low end, until you get profficient with it. I find
    the Dot or low end mag. faster and more accuarate than standard irons.
     
  16. whphel

    whphel Lake Stevens Member

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    Thanks! I know good scopes and you do get what you pay for I have a couple Leaupold VXIII 8.5-25x50 on my long distance guns and a VXII 3-9 on my target 22. Those would all be Night force if I had the cash. I am willing to pay for good optics even if it takes time to save the cash just wanted to here what everyone prefered and why they prefer them on the AR platform as I am new to the AR. Learning alot I am going to build my next one.
     
  17. ZA_Survivalist

    ZA_Survivalist Oregon AK's all day.

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    Somewhat of my .02 minimalist view..
    The less junk on the rifle, the better. More things can go wrong if you've got all those high tech holographic and "Dot" sights...Batteries, extra weight..etc.

    Iron sights, a decent scope if need be; but not illuminated.:)

    I like the coolness factor to all of those things, but I'd rather have a rifle I could take out into the woods for a few weeks rather than a day or two.
    Unless you can Macgyver a pair of batteries out of some animal droppings a pinecone, some chewing gum and a shoelace. :thumbup:

    Which I bet some of the folks on here could actually do given the time/chance. :laugh:
     
  18. Oohrah

    Oohrah NorthwestSouthern Oregon Coast Member

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    You sound like old school that have their mind made up. Me too kind of, until eyes went down hill. Been a scope person since the 50s and found shooting was faster and more accurate, plus tracing a moving target was so much easier. Had all types expensive and cheap, and put on what is affordable. I don't see much of advantage of only good ones need to coast two or three times the price of the firearms.
    You may not have noticed, but many more troops use glass and pods to aid in distant target hits. All the active duty Marines that I have talked to, love the fact they can use specialized add ons, and little talk of failures to operate. I believe some units have one in four designated marksmen, and all have glass of some type.
    So what if the batteries give out!!! All that happens is instead of pretty little red or green cross hairs, ya get the old BLACK. These aren't the battery packs of WW2 night sniper carbines. Probably eight or ten don't weigh as much as a single cartridge.
    You can only shoot as good as you can see!!! As a younger Marine years back, I was a fourth award Expert. In fact in eight years, I never failed to qualify as an expert with either a rifle or pistol. With my eyes now, with standard sights, most likely I would be hard put to shoot Marksman!
    My AR Bushy wears a knock off Colt type 4X, with no other add ons. I'm putting together a Panther Pro Low flat top with a Spike Tactical lower. Now that will be heavy to tote, but should shoot good. I plan on putting a couple of different scopes on separate mounts to once zeroed can be interchanged.
    May even do the same with a Reflux Dot type. ( Now this when the battery is out, doesn't work!!!:thumbup:
     
  19. whphel

    whphel Lake Stevens Member

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    Thank you for your service!

    That .308 sounds like a nice build.