What distance is your laser dialed in to? Why?

What distance is your laser dialed in to? Why?

This is a discussion on What distance is your laser dialed in to? Why? within the Defensive Carry & Tactical Training forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Hello all…. I’ve been thinking a lot about this laser dialing in biz… and I’m not too sure it’s a good idea to dial any ...

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Thread: What distance is your laser dialed in to? Why?

  1. #1
    Member Array Flap's Avatar
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    What distance is your laser dialed in to? Why?

    Hello all….
    I’ve been thinking a lot about this laser dialing in biz… and I’m not too sure it’s a good idea to dial any laser sight in to a specific distance as your point of aim be it on a EDC or anything else.

    Why?

    1. All SD or HD situations are unpredictable, so why try to predict where the threat will be positioned to begin with?
    2. At distances other than your POA laser setting, there will be the issue of parallax or offset or both, to consider should the distance to target change for whatever reason.
    3. Adjusting for parallax or offset, or both means some time for added thinking gets devoted to the already serious set of circumstances.
    4. Even using a laser sight on the range in controlled circumstances, placing ffollow up shots in the same hole is not a given.
    5. A laser only shows ‘relatively’ where the round ‘should’ land, not where it will land every time exactly.
    6. Attached laser sights don’t always align themselves perfectly to the vertical or horizontal plane of the bore’s center line, and this magnifys the problem one faces when or if they are forced to make mental on the fly adjustments due to varying circumstances.

    How far ‘off’ might I be with shot placement then in a high stress life on the line scenario if all of my best guess settings and conditions aren’t met, or I forget how much compensation is required to land an accurate shot at some other distance than the one I have dialed up.?

    Consequently, a very good argument can be made to ignore setting a laser to some predestined magical point of aim.

    If you sport a laser sight on your EDC or HD weapon shouldn’t that sight be optimized to every distance and not some predetermined specific choice? Lasers and all other sights are after all, merely a reference, right?

    There is a better way to go.

    Configuring one’s weapon system in such a way that a laser beam parallels ONLY the center line of the bore at all distances yields a far more stable and valid aiming reference and is unaffected by varying distances to targets. Well, within reason of course.

    Whether the laser sits atop or below the barrel in line with the bore just from its dedicated residence on the weapon, or offset by some minor amount to either side of it, or both, the only adjustment ever necessary for me to concern myself with if my laser sight parallels the bore center line , is this single concept.

    for example, on my FNP 45T with a Viridian X5L the natural aim of the attached laser is beneath the center of the muzzle by about an inch, and off to the right about half that much.

    In a perfect world using a one hole firearm and exact shooting skills so long as this relationship between bore center line and laser beam never alters, the slug should then land up and to the left of the laser’s dot, coorespondingly. Barring the influence of physics & gravity.

    As such, in real world practice, shot placement is adjusted more naturally from the dot itself as the result, accordingly, and quickly, each and every time without calculating for anything else.

    In matters of self or home defense where factoring in bullet drop is predominately of no actual concern relying upon a reference. Instead of a particular intersecting point to which I have previously chosen appears the more viable solution of the two by the sheer flexibility it affords the shooter in target acquisition if nothing else.

    Even though one might not end up with a perfect side by side relationship of center of bore & laser, on some horizontal or vertical plane from your bore’s center line, it will enevitably align on some degree of angle and some minor and likely meager distance from it,

    The adjustment which is made aligning oneself with this philosophy is always the same regardless the distance to target. Figuring, calculating, re-calculating, or worrying are all deleted from the prospect of shooting. It’s a simplified point and shoot affair every time.

    To pursue this aspect of laser sight to center of bore alignment, only familiarizing yourself with the relationship between those two lines to find out if they remain as parallel as can be as far out as is pertinent or prudent to the firearm itself.

    This prospect is slam dunk simple as the only thing one needs to align and produce are two non intersecting beams of light. You won’t have to fire a shot!

    Just using a bore sighter, a flat surface like a table top, a target of sorts, and a source for smoke to visibly see the relationship of your particular pair of lasers, well that and perhaps more batteries if you’re a slow walker, and perhaps the adjustment wrench that came with your laser sight, you’re ready to proceed.

    The important thing is to determine the space from one laser to the other is the same at the muzzle as it is downrange at whatever point you choose to inspect them at. 25 yards? 50 yards? 30 feet? 50 feet? Wherever.

    If the determined gap between these two lasers isn’t closing in or spreading out at 50 feet I’d say you’re definitely on the correct track and good to go right there for sidearm’s.

    How anal you want to be with this exercise is certainly up to you but I’d suggest not to get carried away inspecting the two beams beyond the distance of your weapon And shooting skills effective range.a spot check at 3ft. and again at 10 or 15ft will reveal much and tell you which way to adjust the laser sight itself.

    Perhaps you’ll find some disparity along the route the beams travel. Adjust accordingly or if there is no suitable realignment the sight is capable of making to more finely regain a parallel relationship, put that degree of separation into your mind’s data base for future reference. It may be that despite the laser sights ability to adjust it’s beam simply does not allow for a perfect parallel relationship from muzzle to where ever. That’s OK too. Merely attempt to get as close as possible throughout the whole of your weapon’s effective range and as said, store the difference in your memory. It shouldn’t amount to much.

    Some minor tweaking or modification of the physical attachment to the rail could be in order, though I suspect very often messing around with this area amounts to little real significance, but perhaps bears investigating in some cases.

    Once the relationship between laser and bore are just like rail road tracks or as close as is possible, at virtually every foot of the way to the target allows for lessening reaction times, and improves targeting acquisition and gains me confidence in the shooting process, be it the first round, or the follow up rounds. Shooting with a laser sight so configured makes shooting automatic. It subtracts thinking or guess work from the situation completely.

    This has to be seen as a distinct time saving advantage IMHO. Any advantage, real or perceived is a big deal.

    This is purely my own philosophy I’ve gained from experience but it may not be yours and there might be a much better argument for another take on the use of lasers so if anyone has found a better mouse trap please.. do tell what it entails and why it’s become your preff..

    Thanks for reading.


  2. #2
    Member Array ZOMBIEvs42's Avatar
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    if i had a laser, i would probably set the POA to intersect the POI at 25 feet, the longest distance in my house.
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    VIP Member Array OutWestSystems's Avatar
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    27 feet.

    Why? It is the distance from the top of my stairs to the front door. The most likely distance that I would be using it.
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    Member Array Joshp689's Avatar
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    look at my post #14 on At what distance do you sight your laser? that should explain it for you
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    Distinguished Member Array Arborigine's Avatar
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    I set mine for 50 feet, because anything over 100 with an LCP is not only wishful thinking, it's not self-defense.
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    VIP Member Array glockman10mm's Avatar
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    Yeah, this should be a good one.
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    VIP Member Array Bad Bob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by glockman10mm View Post
    Yeah, this should be a good one.


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    I can see the sun quite well and that's 26,000 miles. I'm good to go! ;)

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    VIP Member Array Jaeger's Avatar
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    I can't stand them. The laundry list of why i don't like them is very long, but the #1 reason is that I'm way more accurate with normal sights, and even from the hip it's more of an annoyance than an aid. My G27 was bought used and the previous owner installed the spring guide laser, which is nice, because I don't use it, but isn't in the way, and it adds no weight. I only carry that pistol when there is more reason to expect trouble.
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    VIP Member Array high pockets's Avatar
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    Sorry, you lost me by the end of the first sentence. The only laser I have is the one I use to play with my cats. It's calibrated to work from the end of the laser, to all the way across the room.
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    Distinguished Member Array Arborigine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by high pockets View Post
    The only laser I have is the one I use to play with my cats. It's calibrated to work from the end of the laser, to all the way across the room.
    At a stupid moment i thought it might be fun to let the cat chase my LCP's laser around the living room, and almost moved my hand before the little R.Lee Ermie on my shoulder slapped the crap out of me. The other one was also yelling things unprintable on this forum.
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    Member Array Flap's Avatar
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    I certinaly understand those who disavow laser sight or anything other than open sight. For my purposes a laser is important enough an option I have one on nearly every weapon I own.

    I also understand the severity of ADD on the web is rampant and reading more than a couple sentences is extremely difficult. that's too bad. Sorry.


    as for the actual topic....
    I don’t have a crystal ball so the fashion in which future events will unfold always escapes me


    Maybe too, '‘person of angle’' discussions shouldn’t be as picky as I seem to be inclined to make this one. I simply feel as said, eliminate as much thinking, drift, slop, or mis-adjustment out of the process, where one can, and you’re better off merely by subtraction.

    I’ve yet to have an intruder break and enter into my house and just stand right there at the entryway waiting for me to show up. If that did happen, I’d suspect I was being setup and another BG or more were about to strike.

    If I can entirely eliminate the variable of distance altering the shot placement, wouldn’t that be a better option? Yes. Always.

    If your laser beam is not directly over or under the exact center of the bore and distances increase or the shot picture now becomes a much smaller one because the BG found concealment or cover or worse yet has placed themselves in line of fire of another family members room, it’s a whole new ball game and your shot placement attitude is now acutely severe… and there’s no time to be thinking about how much compensation is going to be sufficient to get a round into a now way smaller space.

    In lieu of appropriate & precise compensation for these changes, very probably your shot either misses or is not critical enough to down the perp.

    I’ve read or heard time and again, about the old adage of conjuring up some mystical magical distance the perp will be positioned at when we face off, but I believe there’s a few flys in the ointment with that mindset. I’ve just mentioned a couple right here.

    Because a particular distance inside the home is this or that length and you’ve set your aimning device to it, that approach hamstrings your weapon from any other distance to target and it just makes matters worse when things get really obtuse..

    Likely this is merely splitting hairs when talking distances inside 25 ft and you have a clear path to target and plenty of target to shoot at, but still, if accuracy is portioned out to the laser, the ammunition, and your own shooting skills, I’m of the opinion I should ensure as many of these factors are addressed, eliminated, and/or dead on.


    IMHO, point and hit is better than point and miss and no BG situation is ever gonna be as I’ve made up my mind that it will in advance. That’s called overly optimistic or flat out ddreamin’.


    so why lock into something that 90% of the time won’t be the deal? This is the part that continues to give me pause.

  13. #13
    Distinguished Member Array GlassWolf's Avatar
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    Mine are set to about 25 feet. At the range, I have used the lasers from about 5 yards out to about 25 yards, and I'm still within a good effective radius with a 9mm.
    I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do. I am free, no matter what rules surround me. If I find them tolerable, I tolerate them; if I find them too obnoxious, I break them. I am free because I know that I alone am morally responsible for everything I do.

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    Member Array Flap's Avatar
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    Super! 9mm shoot like lasers most of the time. Very flat.

    There’s more than one way to bait a hook. Tie your shoes, or season a stew.

    I just wanted to solicit some feedback and introduce or better put re-introduce another view point on how to make shooting using a laser a less mentally encumbered affair.

    Subtracting one reputedly traditional approach and pursuing another one, can enable the shooter to have a broader range and realize greater accuracy by using the laser’s light as one’s ‘virtual’ center of bore, and making only one on the fly minor sight adjustment regardless the range to target, or the targets size,.

    It is a very good idea and one I’ll hold to going forward. It’s a faster way and works great despite the variables involved in any shooting scenario.

    The more obscure item in all of this and aimed right at those who do use lasers, not those who don’t, is when seeking out a laser aiming sight or optic one should try to find the sort which once affixed to the weapon emits it’s beam directly inline on the vertical plane of the bore’s center as is possible…. And not one whose line of sight is off set… IF at all possible. Although having a laser is better than not having one despite the location of the actual emitters relationship to the bore’s center.

    That said, I own two laser sights whose lasers are in fact offset slightly to the side of the barrel’s center line.

    Laser Lyte makes a rear sight laser which has no adjustments but sits directly above the barrel and in the center. Other laser’s like one poster mentioned here already has a Glock that has a GUIDE Rodlaser installed.

    Guide rod lasers don’t have adjustments but provide a sighting dot which is far closer to the centerline of the barrel than one attached to an accessory rail, again, making target acquisition quicker and more accurate as well at any pertinent distance..

    Think about it… if every bullet you could use had it’s own on board laser inside of it, wouldn’t that be the most optimum laser sight in the world? It’s shooting right down the center of the bore for Pete’s sake! No off set to worry about… no misalignment to correct for, nada! Point and shootmore … accurately than you may have ever before… to ANY distance the gun is capable of shooting ordinarily ...

    Provided you do your part in firing the gun itself.

    I’m not selling anything and am not aligned with any manufacturer so I could care less what another person does with their weapon or their approach to SD, HD, or just plinkin’ at the range.

    I simply have noticed how much faster and more accurate shooting has become once I dedicated my laser to merely parallel the weapon’s center of bore, rather than affix the dot to some imagined mystical distance downrange and then worry or concern myself in crucial situations with how much will I now be off by, or how much do I need to correct for due to changes in those circumstances.

    I try not to let my old school ideas interfere with my new school life saving desire. I suppose that’s one reason why I added a quicker way to acquire a target and hit it with more consistency by putting laser sights on my guns.

    Some like red dots. Some use 1x – 4x red dots. Some use fiber optic versions of open sights. Some just stick to what they’ve used for years which don’t lend themselves to use in low or no light, and that’s cool too. Fine. Have at it.

    Whatever gives me a better chance to survive is what I’ll attempt to acquire and employ if it is at all even remotely feasible.

    I can’t wait for bullets with on board lasers!! Or better yetheat seeking bullets, or those , programmable bullets that fly around corners and hit only those who have weapons in their hands.

    Tell me, old schoolers, you won’t buy them.

  15. #15
    VIP Member Array Bad Bob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flap View Post
    I certinaly understand those who disavow laser sight or anything other than open sight. For my purposes a laser is important enough an option I have one on nearly every weapon I own.

    I also understand the severity of ADD on the web is rampant and reading more than a couple sentences is extremely difficult. that's too bad. Sorry.
    You come off as a tad condescending here.

    Those who eschew laser sights usually have good reason. They are a great teaching tool, but for an expert level shooter and above they serve as a distraction and actually slow them down. There have been several studies, use you google-fu. Accuracy is enhanced by familiarity-You gotta shoot it.

    As far as reading long posts, it has nothing to do with ADD and everything to do with content and delivery. Then there is this little thing about knowing how the adult human brain works.

    To the original topic. I think that a red dot is a more viable solution, I want to equip a Glock or M&P with an RMR in the near future. Chasing the BG with a red dot is more efficient when such red dot is on the focal plane INHO. I also can't wait to have sharks with laser beams on their heads.
    My rifle and pistol are tools, I am the weapon.

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