We continue our series on gun accessories, this time looking into sights and scopes. As we look into sights, we thought it’s necessary to note that there many more brands and styles of gun accessories than we highlight, and the ones we review are usually for some of the most common firearms (the M16, the Beretta 92, etc.). That being said, here’s our take on sights.
Iron Sight – This is the most basic form of sights. It’s the least technologically advanced version of a sight, but it nonetheless has stood the test of time and continues to see use in modern firearms. The basic design has two components. There is a notch or hole close to the rear of the gun, and a bead, post (similar to a pin), or ring near the front.
An open sight has s notch near the rear of the gun, and a bead or post near the front. To aim, the shooter aligns the notch with the post or bead on his target. Open sights are common, cheap, and very lightweight. A drawback to these gun accessories is that they do not give the shooter a full view of the target — the bottom portion is blocked.
An aperture sight uses a hole near the back of the gun, and a ring at the front. The shooter aligns the ring with the peephole while aiming at the target. Aperture sights are very useful under low-lit conditions.
Reflex Sight – This type of sight is a military surplus item currently used by several U.S. soldiers. The sight reflects an image onto glass that contains a reticle. A reticle is just lines and/or a dot that are aligned in a specific way so as to allow the shooter to aim. A common reticle design is the crosshairs design. Another reticle is shown at the right on a scope from Impact Guns.
These sights often require the use of a mount. The mount is attached directly to the gun, and the sight is attached to the mount. Reflex sights have higher performance over iron sights, especially in darker conditions. TRUGLO is a brand that makes reflex sights that are actually illuminated, which give the shooter even greater visibility. Some reflex sights also have the advantage of being able to magnify targets, which comes in handy when firing from long distances. But there’s another type of sight that does an even better job at magnification.
We’ll continue this discussion on gun accessories in our next article about sights, beginning with the telescopic sight. Be sure to check it out!
Written by Craig Kent, member of the Best Military Surplus team.