At what distance do you sight your laser?

This is a discussion on At what distance do you sight your laser? within the Related Gear & Equipment forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I am learning so much on this site, this is the first place I thought to pose this question: I have a laser on my ...

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Thread: At what distance do you sight your laser?

  1. #1
    Member Array Jackster's Avatar
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    At what distance do you sight your laser?

    I am learning so much on this site, this is the first place I thought to pose this question:
    I have a laser on my Glock 19. I like the laser, but the manufacturer (Crimson Trace) claims it comes from the factory sighted to 50 feet. I found that to be an inaccurate statement.

    I know this system is for SD, so pinpoint accuracy is not required. But, I find it difficult to think I really need to sight in for that far of a distance. As I understand, most SD situations are spitting distance or less.

    So, I must ask laser aficionados, at what distance do you sight in your laser, and why?

    Thanks to all.

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  3. #2
    VIP Member Array Gene83's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jackster View Post
    I am learning so much on this site, this is the first place I thought to pose this question:
    I have a laser on my Glock 19. I like the laser, but the manufacturer (Crimson Trace) claims it comes from the factory sighted to 50 feet. I found that to be an inaccurate statement.

    I know this system is for SD, so pinpoint accuracy is not required. But, I find it difficult to think I really need to sight in for that far of a distance. As I understand, most SD situations are spitting distance or less.

    So, I must ask laser aficionados, at what distance do you sight in your laser, and why?

    Thanks to all.
    My thinking is that if it's accurate at fifty feet, you will probably hit dead center at anything less than fifty feet. Accuracy will probably be determined by how steady your aim is.
    "The superior man, when resting in safety, does not forget that danger may come." ~ Confucius

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    Member Array zxd9's Avatar
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    If this were a home defense pistol I would site it at the longest distance you are going to shoot in your home. For general carry, I'd say 15 yards. The chances of a shooting beyond that are probably pretty slim and you can still shoot beyond 15y with reasonable accuracy.
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    I put a CT LaserGuard on my P238 and at 50 feet it was dead-nuts on right out of the box. It continues to be right on the money at closer distances as well.
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    Member Array nathanjns's Avatar
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    I sight mine at 15 yards ( G17, G22 ). I do so because I find I can stay on a paper plate from 0 - 25 yards when done that way.

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    Senior Member Array Chuck R.'s Avatar
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    I simply co-witness mine to my iron sights, with the dot right at the top of the front sight post.

    I find it makes it easier to verify zero or re-zero when I remove the laser for cleaning etc.

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    Distinguished Member Array Exacto's Avatar
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    This is an interesting question because I am not a big fan of lasers and am interested in if anyone else sees it as I do. IMHO, often times there is no time to put a laser where you want it in a critical self defense situation. If you have that time, great, but you can't depend on it. These situations usually happen so fast that many times there isn't even time to use your sights. You point shoot for center mass, there is no time to "aim" much less position a laser on target. Now I know that this will not always be the case, but for self defense I think you train for the worst case scenario. Very fast combat accurate hits point shooting, without "aiming". There is a clock running in every gun fight, and taking time to aim can make you lose. Just My opinion, I train both ways, but realistically, it will happen so fast there will be no time.
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    Distinguished Member Array kapnketel's Avatar
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    Mine is sighted at 7 yards
    I'd rather be lucky than good any day

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    My laser boresight, delta point and Crimson trace all merge at the same point at 21 feet. I selected 21 feet merely as a known reference point.
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    Member Array nathanjns's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Exacto View Post
    This is an interesting question because I am not a big fan of lasers and am interested in if anyone else sees it as I do. IMHO, often times there is no time to put a laser where you want it in a critical self defense situation. If you have that time, great, but you can't depend on it. These situations usually happen so fast that many times there isn't even time to use your sights. You point shoot for center mass, there is no time to "aim" much less position a laser on target. Now I know that this will not always be the case, but for self defense I think you train for the worst case scenario. Very fast combat accurate hits point shooting, without "aiming". There is a clock running in every gun fight, and taking time to aim can make you lose. Just My opinion, I train both ways, but realistically, it will happen so fast there will be no time.
    This has been done a lot in other threads so I won't repeat much of it here. I agree with your comments for the most part, especially about being prepared for everything you can think of. The laser provides some capabilities that neither iron sights or point shooting accomplish very well. It is an extra tool in the box so to speak. You don't have to use it for every situation. But when you do need it, you will probably need it pretty bad!

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    Distinguished Member Array onacoma's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jackster View Post
    I know this system is for SD, so pinpoint accuracy is not required. But, I find it difficult to think I really need to sight in for that far of a distance. As I understand, most SD situations are spitting distance or less.
    This statement, in bold, has me racking my brain? You mean all these years I've and others have been practicing to get the tightest group for not?

    Some questions on how you use your Glock 19? Is it an in home SD firearm or do you carry concealed? Based on your answer is how you'll need to sit up your fire arm. The Lt here just begrudingly sighted his new SBR at 10 yards. He normally sets the sights at 10 feet as his SBR is for room clearing and most room are 12 feet by 12 feet. If you use 10 yards which is the average distance of SD events you should be fine. YMMV!

    One note, when clearing a room our guys only train for a head shot so pinpoint accuracy is a MUST!


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    Distinguished Member Array Exacto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nathanjns View Post
    This has been done a lot in other threads so I won't repeat much of it here. I agree with your comments for the most part, especially about being prepared for everything you can think of. The laser provides some capabilities that neither iron sights or point shooting accomplish very well. It is an extra tool in the box so to speak. You don't have to use it for every situation. But when you do need it, you will probably need it pretty bad!
    I can see where there could be advantages in having one when you have an opportunity to use it.
    Let your plans be dark and impenetrable as night, and when you move, fall like a thunder bolt...... Sun Tzu.

    The supreme art of war is to defeat the enemy without fighting........ Sun Tzu.

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    Please try to stay on topic to the thread topic which is:
    At what distance do you sight your laser?


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    Member Array Joshp689's Avatar
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    This might be hard to explain without a drawing, but here we go. Sighting anything in is all about angles. The laser will follow a straight line, but the bullet will drop the longer it travels. So letís say for this explanation the bullet travels at a straight line as well(just like the laser). To be sighted you want the bullet(line) and the laser to cross paths, thatís where you sighted it in. if you sight the laser at 10FT the bullet and laser will cross at ten feet. At 50FT the bullet and line are now going away from each other, and could be several feet off. If you sight the laser at 50FT the two lines will cross at 50FT, but because until they cross they are still heading towards each other, when sight in at 50FT and shoot closer you will at most be off the distance that is from the end of your barrel and the laser. when sighting in you can shoot close and still be very accurate, but if you go past where you sighted in it starts to change fast(assuming youíre not shooting a hunting rifle 200yard closer then what its sighted at). I am not saying 50FT is where you should sight in, it was just a number i used to help explain. I will draw a diagram for you if you need it to better explain.

    laser sight0001.jpg
    Last edited by Joshp689; February 26th, 2013 at 10:07 PM.
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    Member Array Jackster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onacoma View Post
    This statement, in bold, has me racking my brain? You mean all these years I've and others have been practicing to get the tightest group for not?

    Some questions on how you use your Glock 19? Is it an in home SD firearm or do you carry concealed? Based on your answer is how you'll need to sit up your fire arm. The Lt here just begrudingly sighted his new SBR at 10 yards. He normally sets the sights at 10 feet as his SBR is for room clearing and most room are 12 feet by 12 feet. If you use 10 yards which is the average distance of SD events you should be fine. YMMV!

    One note, when clearing a room our guys only train for a head shot so pinpoint accuracy is a MUST!
    Thank you, everyone, for your feedback.

    Onacoma, I used to shoot 6mm (Rem 700 ADL and .270 Win Model 70) rifles with 3x-9x variable scopes when I lived in CA where, similar to NV, there were long open spaces. In the East, spaces are not so open. By 'pinpoint accuracy,' I was referring to rifle shooting at distance, 100-300 yards, where I was striving for under an inch in a 5-shot group. I have been informed numerous times (and even CT says this in one of their videos) that the laser points to the area you want to shoot, eg center mass. In the CT video, the guy (whoever he is) mentions that POI within 1-inch of POA is acceptable to him. I have found that when I am shooting my Glock at distances other than what it is sighted for, groupings are not quite on the laser dot. At 75-feet, the bullet drop is WAY below the laser's POA.

    What I especially like about the CT laser, and the reason I bought it, is their 'instinctive activation.' No need to flip a switch in a SD situation. Just grasp the weapon and the laser comes on. I don't want to have to think about any extra steps beyond draw and shoot. Idiot proof is always good for me!

    I can see that most agree to sight in 7-15 yards. I kind of favor the shorter distance, as I really do not think that in SD shootings distances are going to be as far away as 50 feet. At that distance there is usually no real threat, or am I wrong on that?
    Last edited by Jackster; February 27th, 2013 at 12:47 AM.

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