Lasers: the good and the not so good

This is a discussion on Lasers: the good and the not so good within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I just had my Crimson Trace Laserguard for my Kahr PM9 replaced under warranty by Crimson Trace. Nice customer service from Crimson Trace, but a ...

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Thread: Lasers: the good and the not so good

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    Senior Member Array bklynboy's Avatar
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    Lasers: the good and the not so good

    I just had my Crimson Trace Laserguard for my Kahr PM9 replaced under warranty by Crimson Trace.

    Nice customer service from Crimson Trace, but a reminder that even if you have a laser on your gun you need to train 95% of the time as if you only have iron sights. My unit was about two years old and, after working flawlessly, simply failed one day a few weeks ago when when I was switching holsters. Another lesson that was highlighted by this episode is that if my laser had been one of those that only came on when manually turned on by a switch rather than when you simply grip the pistol, it would have been more likely that I would not have noticed that it was not working. This is another good reason to go with CT type grip based lasers

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    Ex Member Array JDlewis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bklynboy View Post
    I just had my Crimson Trace Laserguard for my Kahr PM9 replaced under warranty by Crimson Trace.

    Nice customer service from Crimson Trace, but a reminder that even if you have a laser on your gun you need to train 95% of the time as if you only have iron sights. My unit was about two years old and, after working flawlessly, simply failed one day a few weeks ago when when I was switching holsters. Another lesson that was highlighted by this episode is that if my laser had been one of those that only came on when manually turned on by a switch rather than when you simply grip the pistol, it would have been more likely that I would not have noticed that it was not working. This is another good reason to go with CT type grip based lasers
    Yea you are right because you can't not just rely on your laser to do the work for you.


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    Ex Member Array Yankeejib's Avatar
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    I've fooled with lasers. There's no denying they work and are good for practice. Point and shoot, trigger flinch, etc. all improve. The trigger guard flavor CT is easy for light on/light off control. They use crappy ferrous set screws that corrode quickly if you carry it EDC, and have to be sprayed every few days to keep rust away. I find if you subtract pure daylight situations where you'd never be able to use it, or pure dark nighttime, where'd you'd just be lighting up with the big light, anyway, I don't have a whole lot of use for them in most SD situations. I suppose there will be some argument that the little red dot will make BG's flee in terror, but I don't bank on that one. They do make impossible shots possible (between the legs offhand looking through a hand mirror, etc.). Finding a holster isn't easy. I got a kydex for G26 from Alabama Holster that is decent. But, I never carry my 26 anymore, the 23 is my way to go, and I really don't want to screw up a naturally perfect point shooting beast with anything extra.



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    Ex Member Array JDlewis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yankeejib View Post
    I've fooled with lasers. There's no denying they work and are good for practice. Point and shoot, trigger flinch, etc. all improve. The trigger guard flavor CT is easy for light on/light off control. They use crappy ferrous set screws that corrode quickly if you carry it EDC, and have to be sprayed every few days to keep rust away. I find if you subtract pure daylight situations where you'd never be able to use it, or pure dark nighttime, where'd you'd just be lighting up with the big light, anyway, I don't have a whole lot of use for them in most SD situations. I suppose there will be some argument that the little red dot will make BG's flee in terror, but I don't bank on that one. They do make impossible shots possible (between the legs offhand looking through a hand mirror, etc.). Finding a holster isn't easy. I got a kydex for G26 from Alabama Holster that is decent. But, I never carry my 26 anymore, the 23 is my way to go, and I really don't want to screw up a naturally perfect point shooting beast with anything extra.


    That is a sweet looking gun.


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    Distinguished Member Array claude clay's Avatar
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    unless you train really well, a laser is not a value added product to my way of thinking.

    makes for fun when training a new shooter but wastes time when you hunt for it--especially if it has failed and you do not know it has failed but keep looking for it...moments wasted in a fight
    may often spell a different ending.

    better to buy more ammo with the cost of the laser and learn to point shot with it.
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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    I believe in simplicity to Start with. If you can't see the sights, you can't see the target. In daylight, you can see the sights but not the dot.

    Many people swear by them, but I have not found an application for their practical use.
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    VIP Member Array NY27's Avatar
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    I've thought about them in the past. But like others, I have no real need for them. At CQC I'll be point shooting anyway. Anything outside of that, I wanna see my front sight.
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    Distinguished Member Array Spec's Avatar
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    go to the Crimson Trace Website and watch the video's with Todd Jarred and the other pros...
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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G18CFw0lnD8

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    VIP Member Array livewire's Avatar
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    I had a few lasers for a while. I think they're useful, but they all ended up being too much of a pain for the limited benefit I perceived.

    Two Crimson Trace lasers on each of two guns. One Lasermax.

    On my XD, the CT is a wraparound that rounds out the grip. My draw would be off-center fairly frequently, causing me to have to adjust after I was in a shooting grip. I replaced it with the lasermax, but it just didn't fit right in my gun. They replaced the takedown lever twice, and the whole unit once. The replacement unit was better, but not perfect, but by then I'd gotten sick of messing with it, so I sold it.

    My girlfriend's LCR came with a CT on it. I replaced it with a Hogue grip because it was too recoil-intense for her tendinitis.


    I think they have a limited application of "not daylight". If you're indoors, or in low light, then the red dot will show up. If it's completely dark, the only thing you can see is what's in that dot, but anyone in the room can see the source of the dot (you). If you're outdoors in regular daylight, the dot is so dim that you have to concentrate to pick it out.

    if you're in that limited application, then you still would usually be better served by night sights (Trijicon or Meprolight, as examples), as they help in low light, but don't give your position up to the other shooter or assailant.

    The only REAL advantage to having a laser that I can see is the nonstandard shooting position. If I'm laying on the floor behind cover and want to shoot around something, I can stick my hand out the side and my face down below and find the dot. If I were a mercenary, SWAT operator, or Mall Ninja, I might be able to justify that... but as I'm none of those things, I just can't see it being that important.
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    Member Array 45Gunner's Avatar
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    Problem with laser is I see way too many people become dependent on them and when the battery quits, they stop shooting, unless they have a spare battery. In essence, they have become what I term a "laser cripple." One must continue to train and use the iron sights to maintain proficiency.
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    Distinguished Member Array DefConGun's Avatar
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    I thought about getting a laser when I bought my G23. I didn't have the money for a laser when I bought my gun but I did have Trijicon night sights installed at the time of purchase. The guy I bought it off of installed them at the counter while I waited...good customer service. ;-)

    For some time I still planned on getting a laser. For some reason, however, the laser always took a back seat to other items; i.e., good tactical light, a couple of holsters, some accessories for my gun to personalize it according to my taste, etc.

    Although I never got around to buying the laser, I don't feel like I'm less prepared because I don't have one. I agree with some of the criticism that some of you are saying about the laser. I would also say that if you are starting from scratch with a limited budget like I was then perhaps a laser should take a backseat to other items you might need, i.e. light, holster, etc. for example.

    I agree that a downside is that you can become too dependent on them. They can also let the BG know where you are when you're in the dark as some of you have already pointed out. Let's face it though, a light will also if you're not properly using it.

    Some of you have said that the laser only lights up a spot that it is on and nothing more and have listed this as a criticism. Its true the laser is not going to light up enough of an area to let you know what you are shooting at if you are in the dark but this is not a fault of the laser. You will need a light if you want to illuminate people or objects in the dark and there is no reason as to why you can't use a light in conjunction with a laser.


    Even if you feel that a light and a laser mounted on the the gun makes it too bulky then may I suggest that you can still use a hand held light in conjunction with your gun the same as you would with a gun that doesn't have a laser.

    Some have also pointed out limited conditions in which you can use a laser, i.e. daylight for example. The green lasers work well in daylight so daylight in of itself is not a condition that will make lasers inept. It is true that green lasers are affected by temperature and become ineffective in the cold so I will admit that a green laser may become ineffective in the winter time. If you have a dedicated HD pistol, however, a green laser on your HD pistol should work in all kinds of light conditions when it is used in the house.

    There is no substitute for training and you shouldn't use a laser because you are too lazy to become proficient with iron sights. You will need to know how to use them should your laser fail you.

    All in all, I can see legitimate uses for lasers and there are times when they can be an asset but like I stated earlier, you'r not going to be left unprepared and vulnerable if you don't have a laser.

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    VIP Member Array livewire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DefConGun View Post
    Some of you have said that the laser only lights up a spot that it is on and nothing more and have listed this as a criticism. Its true the laser is not going to light up enough of an area to let you know what you are shooting at if you are in the dark but this is not a fault of the laser. You will need a light if you want to illuminate people or objects in the dark and there is no reason as to why you can't use a light in conjunction with a laser.
    I wasn't suggesting that you should use the laser as an illumination device, but I was pointing out that the limits of a laser are between "good light" (can't see it if it's too bright... even a green laser is hard to pick out during the day) and "dark" (when you're better served with a flashlight and night-sights), as the laser then just serves as a reverse line pointing back to you.

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    On a SD CCW, lasers are as useless as t**s on a boar. Trying to find the little shaking dot on the Perp, might get you killed.
    IAm_Not_Lost likes this.
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    Member Array Walk Soft's Avatar
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    I have lasers for all my carry guns.When I train or target shoot,I remove them.I only keep one on the gun I'm carrying.I think there are several scenarios where they would be advantageous,.

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    VIP Member Array tokerblue's Avatar
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    It's another tool in your toolbox. It doesn't replace proper training or iron sights.
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