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Thread: I went back to just irons and I might like it better

  1. #1
    S.L.O.W. ASH556's Avatar
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    I went back to just irons and I might like it better

    Obviously this has been an off year for at least live fire for most of us for obvious reasons. I'm only at 1,545 live 9mm rounds for the year and the last ones were back in mid-August. That said, I do keep up with a fairly simple, yet useful dry fire routine. I judge its usefulness by the lack of performance fall off I've seen this year when I do get to live fire.

    For those that care, it is as follows and I do it 2-4X per week:

    10 clean presses 2 handed freestyle
    10 clean presses SHO
    10 clean presses WHO

    A clean press means not movement of the dot/sights through the press to completion of break. A failure at any point of the process requires starting over again.

    I also work presentations from concealment and (to a lesser degree) reloads. I probably work presentations 1-2X per week and reloads 1-2X per month. Part of the reason for not working the reload as much is that I've worked it quite a bit in the past and with a full-size frame (G17, G45, etc) can sit under 1.5 pretty comfortably. Conversely I cannot get my big meaty heel out of the way with a G19 enough to get the mag to reliably drop, and as I'm not gaming currently and the reality of a speed reload in a CCW gun fight is pretty low, I just don't focus on it as much.

    Anyway, I took the RMR off my G19 yesterday and started working with irons again. 2 things:

    1. I think I like it, like REALLY like it
    2. Holy target focus Batman! It took like 15 min for my brain to switch to a front sight focus on presentation again.

    I still think the dot has its advantages, primarily for distance shooting and I will probably go back to one, but neither do I consider it the "must have" that so many seem to.
    Food Court Apprentice
    Semper Paratus certified AR15 armorer

  2. #2
    Brass Rat Borderland's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ASH556 View Post
    Obviously this has been an off year for at least live fire for most of us for obvious reasons. I'm only at 1,545 live 9mm rounds for the year and the last ones were back in mid-August. That said, I do keep up with a fairly simple, yet useful dry fire routine. I judge its usefulness by the lack of performance fall off I've seen this year when I do get to live fire.

    For those that care, it is as follows and I do it 2-4X per week:

    10 clean presses 2 handed freestyle
    10 clean presses SHO
    10 clean presses WHO

    A clean press means not movement of the dot/sights through the press to completion of break. A failure at any point of the process requires starting over again.

    I also work presentations from concealment and (to a lesser degree) reloads. I probably work presentations 1-2X per week and reloads 1-2X per month. Part of the reason for not working the reload as much is that I've worked it quite a bit in the past and with a full-size frame (G17, G45, etc) can sit under 1.5 pretty comfortably. Conversely I cannot get my big meaty heel out of the way with a G19 enough to get the mag to reliably drop, and as I'm not gaming currently and the reality of a speed reload in a CCW gun fight is pretty low, I just don't focus on it as much.

    Anyway, I took the RMR off my G19 yesterday and started working with irons again. 2 things:

    1. I think I like it, like REALLY like it
    2. Holy target focus Batman! It took like 15 min for my brain to switch to a front sight focus on presentation again.

    I still think the dot has its advantages, primarily for distance shooting and I will probably go back to one, but neither do I consider it the "must have" that so many seem to.
    I like the dot on my MKII, especially at 25-50 yds, otherwise I just shoot irons on everything else. I've tried my buddies dot on his P-226 and couldn't get too excited about it.
    Awaiting the new order.

  3. #3
    Brass Rat Borderland's Avatar
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    The Salish Sea
    Quote Originally Posted by ASH556 View Post
    Obviously this has been an off year for at least live fire for most of us for obvious reasons. I'm only at 1,545 live 9mm rounds for the year and the last ones were back in mid-August. That said, I do keep up with a fairly simple, yet useful dry fire routine. I judge its usefulness by the lack of performance fall off I've seen this year when I do get to live fire.

    For those that care, it is as follows and I do it 2-4X per week:

    10 clean presses 2 handed freestyle
    10 clean presses SHO
    10 clean presses WHO

    A clean press means not movement of the dot/sights through the press to completion of break. A failure at any point of the process requires starting over again.

    I also work presentations from concealment and (to a lesser degree) reloads. I probably work presentations 1-2X per week and reloads 1-2X per month. Part of the reason for not working the reload as much is that I've worked it quite a bit in the past and with a full-size frame (G17, G45, etc) can sit under 1.5 pretty comfortably. Conversely I cannot get my big meaty heel out of the way with a G19 enough to get the mag to reliably drop, and as I'm not gaming currently and the reality of a speed reload in a CCW gun fight is pretty low, I just don't focus on it as much.

    Anyway, I took the RMR off my G19 yesterday and started working with irons again. 2 things:

    1. I think I like it, like REALLY like it
    2. Holy target focus Batman! It took like 15 min for my brain to switch to a front sight focus on presentation again.

    I still think the dot has its advantages, primarily for distance shooting and I will probably go back to one, but neither do I consider it the "must have" that so many seem to.
    I put a dot on my MKII and never took it off. Works much better for me at 25-50 yds. That's the only dot I have on any of my pistols because 15 yds is where I practice. Irons work fine at that distance for me.
    Awaiting the new order.

  4. #4
    Site Supporter PNWTO's Avatar
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    Oct 2012
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    E. WA
    Great post. While I agree that the dot has a good deal of advantages I donít see one in my near future. Mostly due to the point that at this point in my life the cost and time of equipping and learning a pistol optic just arenít there and, to be honest, Iíd rather spend my time and money on other pursuits. Iím mildly satisfied with my handgun skills at the present, especially with ammo and travel/training limitations.
    "Do nothing which is of no use." -Musashi

    What would TR do? TRCP BHA

  5. #5
    Sight Supporter RJ's Avatar
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    Well I for one am glad of the dot-less crowd, and proud to be a member. Kidding. I'd like to pursue the dot for getting better and diagnosing my (atrocious) trigger control. I suspect I could shoot better with a dot (as everyone seems to say).

    But I spent all the money and most of the goodwill I had saved up with The Boss by buying a G34 recently. I guess that was my COVID panic buy.

    So I am about out of juice to acquire any other expensive baubles now, and will have to enjoy shooting the longer sight radius vs. my G19 for USPSA. And since I carry a G48 anyways, and being a pretty OCD type, if I bought one RDS for USPSA, it would be hard for me not to buy one for my carry gun, and so on and so forth. Could get $$$. I just have other uses for the money.
    Character is doing the right thing when nobody's looking. There are too many people who think that the only thing that's right is to get by, and the only thing that's wrong is to get caught.
    ó J. C. Watts

  6. #6
    King of Craft Clusterfrack's Avatar
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    Jun 2013
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    Redneck wonderland
    Iíve explored the dot quite deeply, and prefer iron sights on pistols. Fortunately my vision remains good.
    "BJJ is sort of like nonconsensual yoga"
    "You donít really graduate from certain problems or certain thingsÖ like you always have to work on trigger control and pulling the trigger straight. " --Ben Stoeger 1/24/2018

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by ASH556 View Post
    Obviously this has been an off year for at least live fire for most of us for obvious reasons. I'm only at 1,545 live 9mm rounds for the year and the last ones were back in mid-August. That said, I do keep up with a fairly simple, yet useful dry fire routine. I judge its usefulness by the lack of performance fall off I've seen this year when I do get to live fire.

    For those that care, it is as follows and I do it 2-4X per week:

    10 clean presses 2 handed freestyle
    10 clean presses SHO
    10 clean presses WHO

    A clean press means not movement of the dot/sights through the press to completion of break. A failure at any point of the process requires starting over again.

    I also work presentations from concealment and (to a lesser degree) reloads. I probably work presentations 1-2X per week and reloads 1-2X per month. Part of the reason for not working the reload as much is that I've worked it quite a bit in the past and with a full-size frame (G17, G45, etc) can sit under 1.5 pretty comfortably. Conversely I cannot get my big meaty heel out of the way with a G19 enough to get the mag to reliably drop, and as I'm not gaming currently and the reality of a speed reload in a CCW gun fight is pretty low, I just don't focus on it as much.

    Anyway, I took the RMR off my G19 yesterday and started working with irons again. 2 things:

    1. I think I like it, like REALLY like it
    2. Holy target focus Batman! It took like 15 min for my brain to switch to a front sight focus on presentation again.

    I still think the dot has its advantages, primarily for distance shooting and I will probably go back to one, but neither do I consider it the "must have" that so many seem to.
    So I understand your analysis, is it correct that the last live fire rounds you fired were in August, and you recently went to iron sights in dry fire, and on that basis, meaning just what you observed in dry fire, you decided you prefer irons to a dot?
    Likes pretty much everything in every caliber.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ASH556 View Post
    Obviously this has been an off year for at least live fire for most of us for obvious reasons. I'm only at 1,545 live 9mm rounds for the year and the last ones were back in mid-August. That said, I do keep up with a fairly simple, yet useful dry fire routine. I judge its usefulness by the lack of performance fall off I've seen this year when I do get to live fire.

    For those that care, it is as follows and I do it 2-4X per week:

    10 clean presses 2 handed freestyle
    10 clean presses SHO
    10 clean presses WHO

    A clean press means not movement of the dot/sights through the press to completion of break. A failure at any point of the process requires starting over again.

    I also work presentations from concealment and (to a lesser degree) reloads. I probably work presentations 1-2X per week and reloads 1-2X per month. Part of the reason for not working the reload as much is that I've worked it quite a bit in the past and with a full-size frame (G17, G45, etc) can sit under 1.5 pretty comfortably. Conversely I cannot get my big meaty heel out of the way with a G19 enough to get the mag to reliably drop, and as I'm not gaming currently and the reality of a speed reload in a CCW gun fight is pretty low, I just don't focus on it as much.

    Anyway, I took the RMR off my G19 yesterday and started working with irons again. 2 things:

    1. I think I like it, like REALLY like it
    2. Holy target focus Batman! It took like 15 min for my brain to switch to a front sight focus on presentation again.

    I still think the dot has its advantages, primarily for distance shooting and I will probably go back to one, but neither do I consider it the "must have" that so many seem to.
    What is your vision like ?

    One can shoot target focused with irons out to 7-25 yards depending on your skill level. discussed here.

    https://pistol-forum.com/showthread....ing-with-irons

    What I've seen with LE shooters, is the ability to switch back and forth between dots and irons seems to depend on the individual. I've not experienced it but I've heard some known competent shooters report the same issue switching back and forth.

    https://pistol-forum.com/showthread....sight-handguns

  9. #9
    King of Craft Clusterfrack's Avatar
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    Redneck wonderland

    I went back to just irons and I might like it better

    @HCMís post mirrors my experience. Once some people go to the dot, they really canít shoot irons anymore. Others, myself included, can switch back and forth without effort or much difference in performance.

    It may have to do with whether they can shoot irons with a target focus?
    "BJJ is sort of like nonconsensual yoga"
    "You donít really graduate from certain problems or certain thingsÖ like you always have to work on trigger control and pulling the trigger straight. " --Ben Stoeger 1/24/2018

  10. #10
    Full disclosure: I have exactly zero time on a RDS pistol. I do have substantial time on RDS rifles.

    I don't like them. I have astigmatism so red dots always look blurry, but I don't find any benefit to the generally tiny dot many use. When I would qualify on my RDS (Aimpoint PRO) mounted patrol rifle I was always faster and scored slightly higher, ~ 98.6 RDS vs 99.3-100 irons, every time. No matter what I did, I always found myself chasing the dot. For all intents and purposes I don't see much point to a single dot RDS on a rifle used for LE patrol work, which is predominantly a CQB environment. I found judging the bore line POI to POA offset more difficult to quickly calculate than with irons.

    I view the RDS sight geared more for offensive work, which is more suited for long arms. I suppose if your pistol is a offensive weapon then sure, but with the epiphany realized by the shooting world to use brightly colored front sights and blackout rear sights, which work really well, especially at typical shooting/gunfight distances, I'm not sure it's worth $300-$1,000 to drop a RDS on a pistol.

    Who knows, maybe I'll like them, but I generally think they're just another gizmo that some people use as a crutch to offset their poor fundamentals. (Even on rifles to an extent. I see much more benefit and use with a low power prism type optic.)

    I know my opinion probably makes me a fudd, but I am open to trying one out on a pistol. I just don't think I'd like the extra bulk. My gun is large enough with a light on it. If I was going to shoot open with a race gun, optic that baby up.

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