Questions about mounted optics

Questions about mounted optics

This is a discussion on Questions about mounted optics within the General Firearm Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; I've been thinking about getting a red dot/reticle optic for my AR. However, there are a lot to choose from, and in a wide range ...

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    Questions about mounted optics

    I've been thinking about getting a red dot/reticle optic for my AR. However, there are a lot to choose from, and in a wide range of prices. With that in mind, I have a couple of questions for members who have mounted optics on their AR. Also for those who have both mounted optics, and flip-up sights in an off-set position:

    1. When it comes to optics, is it a matter of "you get what you pay for", or are there good optics out there that don't cost several hundred dollars?

    2. Are there any disadvantages to having both mounted optics, and flip-up sights in an off-set position?
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    VIP Member Array PAcanis's Avatar
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    There are plenty of good optics out there without getting into the several hundred dollar range. Just make sure it has good reviews on handling recoil and battery life. You don't want an optic that will crap out on you during a 500 rounds class. And most of us will never need our AR's for battle conditions.
    That said, if you are going to buy a $1000 AR, don't skimp too much on the sight. I like to keep my guns and optics paired how I think they should be. I don't like sticking $1200 scopes on $600 rifles either Not for my shooting.

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    VIP Member Array ghost tracker's Avatar
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    A budget makes all theoretical optic questions... less theoretical.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PAcanis View Post
    There are plenty of good optics out there without getting into the several hundred dollar range. Just make sure it has good reviews on handling recoil and battery life. You don't want an optic that will crap out on you during a 500 rounds class. And most of us will never need our AR's for battle conditions.
    That said, if you are going to buy a $1000 AR, don't skimp too much on the sight. I like to keep my guns and optics paired how I think they should be. I don't like sticking $1200 scopes on $600 rifles either Not for my shooting.
    Checking customer reviews makes good sense. In fact, all your points and suggestions make good sense. And I didn't realize having a mounted sight, plus offset, flip-up sights, were for battle conditions. Glad I asked about that. Thanks PAcanis.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost tracker View Post
    A budget makes all theoretical optic questions... less theoretical.
    Good point.
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    Tstone, I didn't touch on the offset sights vs optics. I've got no horse in the offset sight race, so no opinion. The AR's I have with red dots all co-witness with the irons.
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    Member Array vminghelli2's Avatar
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    Red dot sights are a you get what you pay for thing, to a point. Stay 100 dallor and up and you'll be ok. Definitely get iron sights. They should be zeroed, and once zeroed the tend to stay that way. Once zeroed the only change you need to make is for temp. Every 10 degrees, will change your point of impact by one moa. So the hotter it gets your round will impact 1" higher at 100 meters for every 10 degrees hotter it is then when you zeroed. It goes the same for cooler temps also, except you point of impact strikes lower by 1 moa for every 10 degrees cooler. This goes for your red dot site also. The number of clicks that = 1 MOA very from brand to brand on iron sights and red dots.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PAcanis View Post
    Tstone, I didn't touch on the offset sights vs optics. I've got no horse in the offset sight race, so no opinion. The AR's I have with red dots all co-witness with the irons.
    My mistake. Thanks for clarifying.
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    Quote Originally Posted by vminghelli2 View Post
    Red dot sights are a you get what you pay for thing, to a point. Stay 100 dallor and up and you'll be ok. Definitely get iron sights. They should be zeroed, and once zeroed the tend to stay that way. Once zeroed the only change you need to make is for temp. Every 10 degrees, will change your point of impact by one moa. So the hotter it gets your round will impact 1" higher at 100 meters for every 10 degrees hotter it is then when you zeroed. It goes the same for cooler temps also, except you point of impact strikes lower by 1 moa for every 10 degrees cooler. This goes for your red dot site also. The number of clicks that = 1 MOA very from brand to brand on iron sights and red dots.
    I appreciate the info vminghelli2! I've never tried mounted sights and it's a learning curve.
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    Distinguished Member Array Chuck R.'s Avatar
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    Normally you see Off-Sets mounted on carbine/rifles in conjunction with a magnified optic due to the lack of room to have a scope and BUIS deployed. This allows the user to simply rotate the rifle when presented a close in target when their zoom is too high.

    Most guys running an RDS have either a fixed FSB and a folding rear BUIS or both front and rear folding BUIS and their RDS and irons co-witnessed. I prefer fixed FSB, because then should something go to crap I can simply use my RDS tube as a giant ghost ring rear and still make decent hits out to 50y or so. Normal procedure that I've been taught is to zero your irons 1st, then co-witness your RDS and fine tune it's zero when you get the chance.

    I prefer a lower 1/3rd co-witness, some guys like an absolute, I think it really is a personal preference. As for cost, I tend to lean the opposite way and will normally pay as much or more for an optic & mount than I will for the gun. It really depends on your intended use. For instance a "plinker" I'd go with a Vortex or similar, something for HD I'd go with an Aimpoint, even if I had to stick with the BUIS until I saved the money for it. I also don't mind shelling out money for quality mounts as they will allow you to remove/swap optics and return to zero.

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    Senior Member Array patkelly4370's Avatar
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    I currently have a red dot, fixed front sight, and folding BUIS. They are 1/3 co-witness.
    It works very well.
    But I'm making a change.
    1-4x, ffp, illuminated.
    At 1x it is essentially a red dot (etched reticle so illumination not necessary).
    At 4x the dot grows and it has sub tensions out to 500 yards.
    I'll still keep the BUIS, just in case. But not offset.

    Sent from my SM-N910V using Tapatalk
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck R. View Post
    Normally you see Off-Sets mounted on carbine/rifles in conjunction with a magnified optic due to the lack of room to have a scope and BUIS deployed. This allows the user to simply rotate the rifle when presented a close in target when their zoom is too high.

    Most guys running an RDS have either a fixed FSB and a folding rear BUIS or both front and rear folding BUIS and their RDS and irons co-witnessed. I prefer fixed FSB, because then should something go to crap I can simply use my RDS tube as a giant ghost ring rear and still make decent hits out to 50y or so. Normal procedure that I've been taught is to zero your irons 1st, then co-witness your RDS and fine tune it's zero when you get the chance.

    I prefer a lower 1/3rd co-witness, some guys like an absolute, I think it really is a personal preference. As for cost, I tend to lean the opposite way and will normally pay as much or more for an optic & mount than I will for the gun. It really depends on your intended use. For instance a "plinker" I'd go with a Vortex or similar, something for HD I'd go with an Aimpoint, even if I had to stick with the BUIS until I saved the money for it. I also don't mind shelling out money for quality mounts as they will allow you to remove/swap optics and return to zero.

    Chuck
    I found an acronym key to better understand the terminology in your post. That's a good thing too because it's helping me learn more.

    My AR has a fixed A2 front sight, and a folding rear sight, so I could mount a RDS.

    Thanks Chuck R
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    VIP Member Array Havok's Avatar
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    Yes, you do get what you pay for, however, depending on your use, it may not be worth the extra money. Some people love to spend your money because it doesnt affect them and will just say buy an eotech or aimpoint. They are great sights, Ive used both, but Ive also used a vortex red dot and was pretty happy with it, just like many other people. I dont know that I would go to war with it, but for just regular range use it was just fine, at half the price. Ive also never ran offset sights. I prefer a quick detach mount and just taking the scope off if I need to use sights for some reason to avoid the whole canting thing.
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    VIP Member Array PAcanis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tstone View Post
    I found an acronym key to better understand the terminology in your post. That's a good thing too because it's helping me learn more.

    My AR has a fixed A2 front sight, and a folding rear sight, so I could mount a RDS.

    Thanks Chuck R
    You know, between Chuck and Pat, I was ciphering those acronyms, too
    I almost posted the link to the acronym list, but figured you'd say something if you needed help.
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    Distinguished Member Array Chuck R.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tstone View Post
    I found an acronym key to better understand the terminology in your post. That's a good thing too because it's helping me learn more.

    My AR has a fixed A2 front sight, and a folding rear sight, so I could mount a RDS.

    Thanks Chuck R
    Sorry about that....

    When you look at your RDS mount, take a hard look at a cantilever VS a straight mount. The cantilever puts the RDS further FWD and it helps with your peripheral vision around the tube. It's another personal preference thing. Some guys like the optic up close, but I like it further out shooting with both eyes open.

    Chuck
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