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I\'d like the forums opinion on lasers. I have Crimson trace on my S&w 629 and mu ultralite .357 wheel gun. I love them but I don\'t like the idea of giving myself away with a nice bright laser line, thus I don\'t use one on my 1911.
 

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I am still on the fence on this one. What do the major Shooting academies say on this topic??? Wife and I will be going to Front sight soon, and I will make sure to ask this question. I do not have any laser devices at all, but I can see the practicality in quicker target acquisition and that has got to mean safety and security when all is said and done. Wife and I discussed it and she likes the idea for personal defense but not when she would be shooting for accuracy as she feels it is a cheater for just normal plinking.

Nighthawk, on your Crimson Trace grips; as soon as you grip does it emit a beam??? Is there a way to turn it off?

~A
 

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If

The IF is knowing the limitations of the laser. There are many. Tried them about 10 years or so ago. Some of the limitations I found or have seen:

Low light needed. Useless in bright light conditons beyond a short distance. Poor visability with some backgrounds--dark blue is on if memory serves. Some fabrics also tend to absorb the laser. Dot almost disappears on our Black Poodle.

Looking for the laser and not finding it because of any reason, takes valuable time. Now you must revert to sights...perhaps too late. Target id is still necessary.

Decisions..can cost valuable response time. If you have to choose between which of two sights to use, this can take time you may need to move, shoot, save your life.

Last, durability and battery have both been an issue.

As an old guy with eyes that have to be much older than me, wish they were viable. Perhaps someday they will be.:)
 

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I bought a CT lasergrip for my SIG-Sauer P228 when it was recommended by a top competitor who I\'d called to see about having some work done on the SIG. I think it\'s well worth having. Blazingly fast in low-light and close-in situations.
 

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Originally posted by nighthawk
I\'d like the forums opinion on lasers. I have Crimson trace on my S&w 629 and mu ultralite .357 wheel gun. I love them but I don\'t like the idea of giving myself away with a nice bright laser line, thus I don\'t use one on my 1911.
Nighthawk, they are no good at all. Just bring them in next week and I will dispose of them for you and not charge ya a dime :lol:
 

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Dot almost disappears on our Black Poodle:O KC youre gonna hear about that one:lol: love my laser.. looking to get laser grips for my wheel gun next.
 

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CT lasers

Most defensive uses of a handgun happen in low light. A laser sight is indispensable in these situations. I’ve found the CT’s to be reliable and rugged. They are not toys. Turning them on and off involves a slight movement of your middle finger and some have an additional on/off switch which can be used too. Since I practice using my regular sights and with the laser sights there is no problem sighting in times of full sun. On cloudy/overcast days the laser shows up very well. I have CT grips on all 3 of my revolvers two of which I use for CC. :cool:
 

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I\'m not much of a laser fan myself.

When the SHTF, there are gonna be enough things to look at and worry about. No need a extra tiny red dancing dot and trying to find it under extreme stress.

I just don\'t like the idea of shifting my focus between the badguy (trying to figure out IF he is a badguy), front sight, backsight, location, concealment/cover, whats behind the target....etc

Since these events generally happen at night, you might consider keeping up with a flashlight as well.

Of course this could just be me, you could always get those light/laser combo\'s to put on your gun and do a pretty decent job. But i just like the simplicity of no eletronics on my gun, and only having to think about the bare essentials.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
APachon, Please post what Frontsight has to say. I like my lasers on my wheel guns. I have not lasered the nighthawk, the stock grips are too pretty. :D
 

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nightHawk, so I called up to Front Sight and lasers are not allowed for qual classes such as the CCW class. They would like their incoming students to refrain from using lasers while on the range as well. They have mixed feelings and do see the practicality of them but they obviate the student from learning fundamental mental skills.

Wife and I are coordinating our schedule to take the 2 day handgun course and lasers are frowned upon.

In addition, no certifying instructor in NV is allowed to sign off on a initial or re-qual if the pistol in question is equipped with a Laser sighting acquisition device.

~A
 

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Originally posted by KC135
The IF is knowing the limitations of the laser. There are many. Tried them about 10 years or so ago. Some of the limitations I found or have seen:
Lots of changes from 10 years ago.
Low light needed. Useless in bright light conditons beyond a short distance. Poor visability with some backgrounds--dark blue is on if memory serves. Some fabrics also tend to absorb the laser. Dot almost disappears on our Black Poodle.
Short distance is the rule in most \"unfriendly encounters\", often INSANELY CLOSE! And lasers are brighter than they used to be. Black poodles are not common assailants...Hadda throw that one in...

Looking for the laser and not finding it because of any reason, takes valuable time. Now you must revert to sights...perhaps too late. Target id is still necessary.
This is a training issue. You don\'t look for the laser dot. Proper presentation of handgun will result in dot being on target. If it has failed or will not be visible, proper presentation brings sights into alignment at eyelevel anyway. You don\'t \"look for the dot\".
Decisions..can cost valuable response time. If you have to choose between which of two sights to use, this can take time you may need to move, shoot, save your life.
Above response still applies to this. Only decision one should be making as handgun is presented is fire/not fire. Definitely NOT which sighting system to use.

Last, durability and battery have both been an issue.

As an old guy with eyes that have to be much older than me, wish they were viable. Perhaps someday they will be.:)
Crimson Trace LaserGrips address both issues, durability and battery. 4 hours continuous \"on\" time per $4 battery change ($2 if you can buy in military commissaries). Laser is built into right hand grip so durability is not an issue.

I teach a short defensive handgun course that is timed to give us about 2 hours of night shooting. I have Crimson Trace LaserGrips on 2 Colt Commanders, a S&W 5 shot J frame and a S&W 686 L frame snub; so my students have some opportunity to train with what I have. One of my scenario based shooting exercises is based on the use of lasers to give the student a real good idea of how effective a tool they can be.

Give them a second look, several of the big names (Ken Hackathorn being one) are eating crow over opinions expressed several years ago.

Bruce Foreman
Defensive Handgun instructor in Texas
 

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don\'t use lasers personally, for the same reason mentioned of the \"looky at me\" effect, but REALLY like my night sights on my Kimber and would like to get night sights eventually on all my handguns. With such I would not feel the need for lasers on my handguns.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
randyb, that is a good topic. I just bought a Nighthawk Enforcer 1911 with only the front sight with tritium. After initially being sceptical I actually like it better than the front and rear sight being tritium. It forces me to look at the front sight like your supposed to. I noticed I was much more accurate today while quail hunting.
 

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Originally posted by Pylon
I\'m not much of a laser fan myself.

When the SHTF, there are gonna be enough things to look at and worry about. No need a extra tiny red dancing dot and trying to find it under extreme stress.
Proper training and practice addresses this. Without training, and without regular and frequent practice of the type most of us don\'t get, we will be lost when the SHTF. If you don\'t train for SHTF you ain\'t prepared. Laser or no laser.

If you feel the need to draw, you need to get the \"hardware\" up and between you and the threat. If you\'ve been practicing properly you will do this and if you have a laser the dot will be on that threat. You won\'t have to hunt for it.

If you have to hunt for it, you\'ve been fumbling your training all along because you will not get the gun out aligned properly where it needs to be and you will be having to hunt for your iron sights anyway.

I just don\'t like the idea of shifting my focus between the badguy (trying to figure out IF he is a badguy), front sight, backsight, location, concealment/cover, whats behind the target....etc
Laser sights get you away from just that sort of thing, you focus on one plane-the \"threat\" plane. No need to shift focus from threat to front sight, alignment of rear sight with front sight etc.

You get to remain focused on the threat, where your focus ought to be, anyway. You can concentrate on ID (friend or foe) and what the threat is doing.
Since these events generally happen at night, you might consider keeping up with a flashlight as well.

Of course this could just be me, you could always get those light/laser combo\'s to put on your gun and do a pretty decent job. But i just like the simplicity of no eletronics on my gun, and only having to think about the bare essentials.
There are alternative sighting techniques you can use if you prefer, such as sighting along the top of the slide/barrell and sighting through the shape of the back of the slide or cylinder. These can work well in close up situations if practiced properly but practice is the key.

Regular and frequent or you\'re done. Unless lucky.

Bruce Foreman
Defensive Handgun Instructor in Texas
 

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someone mentioned not wanting to give away a position via a \'laser line\'?

correct me if i\'m wrong, but isnt that \'line'a hollywood gimmick? the lasers i\'ve seen only have a visible beam when there is something for them to pass through, such as steam, fog, etc.
if the air is clear, you only see the origin and the destination, right?

personally, i\'d like to have a laser sight on a handgun, but not my carry piece. maybe one that stays at home.
 

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Misconceptions

V-fib, I believe most citizen confrontations are not in low light. Might want to do some research on this subject.

Bruce, Nothing has changed in the last 10 years--just more product for more guns. Same power, regulated by GVT.

My black poodle Cindy Lou, does not have a gun pointed at her, just my laser pointer I use when teaching classes.

Yes, Heard Ken was doing a class on lasers at IALEFI this year at Dayton. Was signed up to go but wife had surgery three days before class, so I canceled.
Was looking forward to the ATC, have not been to one in about 10 years. Attended several RTCs at Dayton, always a good group.

Very familiar with pricing in GVT facilities, retired in 1970. Problem is most batteries do not fail do to use, they fail do to inadvertent use. You only find out when they are dead.

Yes, training is a key, but the vast majority of handgun owners do not train at all.

Bruce, v-fib and others, If you consider them a viable alternative, have at it. That is what freedom of choice is all about.
 

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Originally posted by spacemanspiff
someone mentioned not wanting to give away a position via a \'laser line\'?

correct me if i\'m wrong, but isnt that \'line'a hollywood gimmick? the lasers i\'ve seen only have a visible beam when there is something for them to pass through, such as steam, fog, etc.
if the air is clear, you only see the origin and the destination, right?
Well, depends on actual lighting levels and what is hanging in the air. I often begin my evening practice as the sun is beginning to set. I like to get in an hour or so of good daylight practice with iron sights, then start with the laser when daylight begins to weaken and the dot shows on targets easily.

When daylight is weakening but still very much there the only manifestation of the laser is the dot on target, but after it is good and dark and you have stirred up some dust with shots fired (dusty and dry in West Texas) you can see dust motes illuminated along the laser path.

But this should not be a significant factor in a defensive gun use because once shots are fired the incident would generally be over so fast no one will have time to \"hold\" a laser line motionless.

personally, i\'d like to have a laser sight on a handgun, but not my carry piece. maybe one that stays at home.
This is always the point of view expressed by those who have no real experience with good laser sights.

Please don\'t get me wrong, I do NOT recommend lasers for what is going to be a primary sighting system. One must ALWAYS train hard with and master iron sights and good defensive handgun shooting skills, but the laser has several extremely useful aspects that complement good shooting skills.

For older folks whose eyes lose the ability to focus on sights and target at the same time, for shooting accurately from awkward positions (injured/wounded or from behind cover as in \"lead with your laser not with your face\") real benefits abound.

Bruce Foreman
 

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Originally posted by APachon
nightHawk, so I called up to Front Sight and lasers are not allowed for qual classes such as the CCW class. They would like their incoming students to refrain from using lasers while on the range as well. They have mixed feelings and do see the practicality of them but they obviate the student from learning fundamental mental skills.

Wife and I are coordinating our schedule to take the 2 day handgun course and lasers are frowned upon.

In addition, no certifying instructor in NV is allowed to sign off on a initial or re-qual if the pistol in question is equipped with a Laser sighting acquisition device.

~A
I don\'t think most of the schools allow them. I left my 1911\'s with CTC Lasergips in the bag at Thunder Ranch and shot their class with plain \"vanilla\" Glocks.

Didn\'t care to be embarassed by Clint looking my way and muttering,

\"Doodads\"

I was there to learn it \"their way\".

Bruce Foreman
 

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Originally posted by nighthawk
randyb, that is a good topic. I just bought a Nighthawk Enforcer 1911 with only the front sight with tritium. After initially being sceptical I actually like it better than the front and rear sight being tritium. It forces me to look at the front sight like your supposed to. I noticed I was much more accurate today while quail hunting.
Don\'t tell me you were hunting quail with your .45?!!:O If you were:bowdown:. :D
 

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Originally posted by randyb
Don\'t tell me you were hunting quail with your .45?!!:O If you were:bowdown:. :D
You obviously don\'t know nighthawk personally :p
 
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