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Which do you feel is more essential? Quality night sights or a weapon mounted flashlight?

  • Night Sights

    Votes: 29 78.4%
  • Weapon Mounted Flashlight

    Votes: 8 21.6%

  • Total voters
    37
  • Poll closed .
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Discussion Starter #1
Seems simple, but I keep bouncing back and forth. And yes, I actually plan on doing both, eventually, but I'm a bit limited on funds for a while so I need to choose one for now. Opinions are welcome as long as they are informative and would love to hear some first hand experiences of when you have found one or the other to be more beneficial.
 

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Neither for me, thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
You neglect to validate a reason for why you feel neither is beneficial. I left off that choice because it is not one I am planning on choosing, I used to speak out against night sights, but in more recent years, I have found them to extremely essential not in total darkness, but in the transitional low light situations. Without them I would have been shooting blindly at a coyote with mange that ran in on me while I was taking my dog out before bed. And another occurance when dispatching a pesky armadillo that liked to tear up the garden at 2am. I never would have been able to see the standard sights on either occation.

I haven't had the misfortune of firing my gun while using a mounted light, but found I can see the contrast shadow outline of the sights clearly against the illuminated surface, so this could work just as well in theory. These are my actual experiences and the kind of responses I'm looking for. I'm looking for informative opinions to make a positive choice of either.
 

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You neglect to validate a reason for why you feel neither is beneficial. I left off that choice because it is not one I am planning on choosing, I used to speak out against night sights, but in more recent years, I have found them to extremely essential not in total darkness, but in the transitional low light situations. Without them I would have been shooting blindly at a coyote with mange that ran in on me while I was taking my dog out before bed. And another occurance when dispatching a pesky armadillo that liked to tear up the garden at 2am. I never would have been able to see the standard sights on either occation.

I haven't had the misfortune of firing my gun while using a mounted light, but found I can see the contrast shadow outline of the sights clearly against the illuminated surface, so this could work just as well in theory. These are my actual experiences and the kind of responses I'm looking for. I'm looking for informative opinions to make a positive choice of either.
I carry and train with a hand-held flashlight in conjunction with low- and no-light shooting. For me, at least it eliminates the need for either night sights or a WML.
 

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Night sights.
I have a WMF on bedside Glock, which also has night sights.
None of my holsters are made to accommodate a pistol with WMF.
I prefer having night sights on a carry pistol, experience from shooting night courses of fire.
 

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I had a tacticool moment and bought a CT light on sale for my M&P9 , not really needed in 1 bed room apartment but it looks cool. Trijicons were installed when OE front dot fell out, I'm planning to carry the M&P during winter months so believe they will be needed.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I carry and train with a hand-held flashlight in conjunction with low- and no-light shooting. For me, at least it eliminates the need for either night sights or a WML.
A handheld is always with me. After all, there may be situations when you do not want to use a mounted light, such as moving through your home to a child's room and you certainly don't want to point a firearm at that child should they be looking for you. So, it would appear that maybe not a mounted light, but an illumination devise, whether mounted or handheld is more essential than night sights in your book.
 

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+1 for handheld light. I find I can both see my sights and identify my target with a hand held light. Not so with just night sights. But I do think night sights are very good for low light ( not dark ) conditions and I install them for that purpose. Don't care for WML on handguns but do like them on HD long guns.
 
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I'm not in favor of a weapon mounted light for various reasons, mostly because it requires sweeping anything you want to see with it. Additionally, peripheral lighting is sometimes more beneficial, especially as it relates to depth perception and defining shadows. Night sights are nice, generally speaking, but are neither essential nor desired in my case. As noted by Mike1956, a hand held light eliminates the need for both night sights and a WML.
 

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Another vote for neither. Learn to shoot and have a flashlight handy . Night sights and WML's are just for people who drank too much tacta-koolaid.
I have night sights on two used guns that came with them and they are good for seeing the gun laying on the table in pitch dark but not much good for anything else.
Those things are crutches for poor training and fantasy encounters. Shoot more and watch TV less.
 

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I'm in the "Neither " camp. I like a hand held light And do more point shooting
then anything now days ; )
H/D
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Another vote for neither. Learn to shoot and have a flashlight handy . Night sights and WML's are just for people who drank too much tacta-koolaid.
I have night sights on two used guns that came with them and they are good for seeing the gun laying on the table in pitch dark but not much good for anything else.
Those things are crutches for poor training and fantasy encounters. Shoot more and watch TV less.
Opinions are welcome, but you should know all details of the shooter in question. I have been training for over 20 years now and 15 of those years were before I ever used night sights. I am very proficient. Better than around 75% of my friends who also train regularly, including a close friend who is former Special Forces and is now local law enforcement. Shooting is not the issue. Its putting the rounds exactly where you want them as fast as you can. Shooting accurately 1 handed while holding a handheld light is lessened. And if you have one hand on your child while moving to a designated safety area, the handheld becomes useless. You then require some kind of low light back up system to keep those rounds on target. One should always have a back up plan for the back up plan.
 

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Seems simple, but I keep bouncing back and forth. And yes, I actually plan on doing both, eventually, but I'm a bit limited on funds for a while so I need to choose one for now. Opinions are welcome as long as they are informative and would love to hear some first hand experiences of when you have found one or the other to be more beneficial.
I entered night sights, however they are not a mandatory feature.
 

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Everyone's experience and preferences are different. I will just share my experience taking an "Advanced Low Light" shooting class. There were some very effective aspects built into this class:
  • The scenarios were all realistic and high stress.
  • We were taught, and had to try, all the handheld flashlight holds that are commonly taught, FBI, etc. to see what worked for us.
  • The blowers in the range were turned off, so we could experience the effect of gunsmoke, which applies to the OP's question more than people might imagine.
  • By the end of the class, we got down to having no ambient light, complete darkness. No flashlight. Think that final shooting scene in "Silence of the Lambs." The RSO had to wear NVGs and the instructor had a hand lightly touching the shooter.
  • There was a moving target rig set up that was very realistic. We had to engage it in complete darkness with no flashlight. So basically the muzzle flash from each successive shot gave you the visual cue as to where to place the second shot. That is really worst case, but it is amazing how well it can work.
I also attempted to use a laser in the class. That did not go well.

My conclusions were what the instructor suggested they might be. The technique taught was "flashing" the flashlight. Quick click on, immediately off and move. Repeat as necessary, but never "shine" the flashlight and never stay in one place. BTW, gunsmoke has a startling effect in very low light. Every shooter who is interested in this topic should experience it and that will not happen at an outdoor range or an indoor range with the blowers on.

The best combination for me is a handheld light and night sights. The handheld needs to be a simple on/off with the button at the back. Lasers are useless if there is gunsmoke. Too bright a flashlight can be worse than too dim. Point shooting is a great help, but the night sight can actually help with that even if you are not going for actual sight alignment.
 

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Handheld light + proficient at point shooting.
That said, I do have a WML on my Mossberg.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk
 

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Several of my carry handguns have night sights. They are great for low light situations. None have lasers or weapon mounted lights. I am retired and rarely go out after sundown.

There is a street light in front of our house and the master bedroom is on the second floor facing the street light. There are flashlights stowed in most rooms of the house. Some rooms have several. Each room and hallway has night lights with battery backup. There are two or three flashlights in each vehicle.

I have carried as a civilian when and where legal since 1963. I drew once in 1967, but didn't have to shoot.

I spent twenty-two years in the military including tours in Viet Nam. I have yet to need a night sight , laser, or weapon mounted flashlight.

My home defense long guns are stock and have iron sights only. Some of my longer range rifles have optics with lighted reticles that still work without batteries.

I am a strong believer in the KISS principle.
 

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I have never used a weapon light. These seem awkward at best, and any combat veteran can tell you that light works both ways. As a young cop years ago I was taught to hold my flashlight out away from my body to avoid giving someone a target in the dark. In Vietnam I always used a red lens filter to preserve my night vision. There are trade-offs with everything.

I have one pistol with night sights; when it was new (12-13 years ago) I wore it under a sport shirt and had two people ask me what those little green lights were under my shirt. It seems that I discovered an entirely new way of "printing". My wife woke me up one night, staring at the partially open closet door where the pistol was on a shelf, bright green night sight glowing eerily in the dark.

Lots of technologies out there. I can see some benefits under some circumstances, but I can also see some down-sides.
 

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A handheld is always with me. After all, there may be situations when you do not want to use a mounted light, such as moving through your home to a child's room and you certainly don't want to point a firearm at that child should they be looking for you. So, it would appear that maybe not a mounted light, but an illumination devise, whether mounted or handheld is more essential than night sights in your book.
My tailswitch-activated, multi-setting rechargeable tac handheld is also with me full-time. It gets used more days than not, whether it is for walking the dog at night, lighting up the nooks and crannies, or simply walking across a parking lot as a force multiplier/OODA disruption. I spent a fair amount of time and effort learning to use it in conjunction with my carry gun in no/low light shooting environments, including two trips through Handgun VI at Tactical Defense Institute.

Night sights are a hindrance to me in my shooting endeavors. I already have a hard enough time drawing up an effective sight picture. Having that glow on the front sight is disruptive, not helpful.
 
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