handgun RDS reflections

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Abbey
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handgun RDS reflections

#1

Post by Abbey »

Curious if anyone has issues with red dot reflections throwing off their aim.

I've been trying to acclimate to a handgun RDS. I tried them a couple times over the last few years but was always much slower than standard sights. But my eyes aren't getting any younger and everyone seems to love optics on handguns, so I'm trying to get enough practice to give them a fair shake.

One thing I've noticed is that I sometimes see a reflection of the dot that confuses me for the actual dot, which usually goes something like:

Draw
acquire sight & pick up the reflected dot
acquire target in sight picture
shoot/miss
say "what the hell?"
wiggle sight around and realize that the "real dot" was off to the side
reacquire target in sight picture
shoot/hit

Usually the sun is at my back but I'm wondering is this something others experience and just train for more consistent presentation or just a problem for my aging astigmatic eyes? With a standard sight, the gun always seems to straighten out between when I start acquiring the sight and fully extend my arms. But with the optic, if I pick up the reflection first, my brain locks onto it.

I'm using Sig Romeo sights right now. Is this something that would be less common with other designs?


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G34
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Re: handgun RDS reflections

#2

Post by G34 »

the dot will overall show you all the mistakes and inconsistencies in your shooting. To fix this you need to modified your presentation to become more inline and push out instead of meeting your support hand further from your body in angle.

Some dots are cleaner than others in regards to blooming BUT more often then not Ill tell students to stop looking at the dot and itll go away.

i will add, wait until you do low light with under powered lights or lights with wide spill. They will wash out your dot completely. Ive found the best for me to be a modlite with and OKW head. but thats a lil off topic.
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Abbey
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Re: handgun RDS reflections

#3

Post by Abbey »

Back when I used to shoot more, I was better/more consistent about presentation. I do start in close and push out, but some of the modern "big dot" fibre sights have made me a bit lazy I guess because I picked them up so easily that I start pushing out earlier. (Think making an arc from my belly up/out instead of making a right angle up to my chest before pushing out.)

With the reflection though - if I pick up the reflected dot, I'll stay locked on the reflection as I push out. Also, I'm cross-eye dominant, which probably factors into the equation.

I'll re-focus on fundamentals & keep training, but trying to figure out if this is just a typical training issue, if there is better gear that would help cut down on the reflected dot, or if standard fibre sights are just a better fit for me.
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G34
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Re: handgun RDS reflections

#4

Post by G34 »

i can already tell your sight focused.
think about it like driving. focus on what ahead of you not the road right in front of you or the steering wheel. you dont have to guide things with your eyes.
the pistol will naturally come into your field of view and with training the alignment will come.
light reflection should never be en issue with proper alignment. i shoot in all types of weather at all times of the day.
HA try aligning night vision with optics!!!!
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Re: handgun RDS reflections

#5

Post by freefly »

Abbey wrote: January 20th, 2022, 6:12 am One thing I've noticed is that I sometimes see a reflection of the dot that confuses me for the actual dot, which usually goes something like:

Draw
acquire sight & pick up the reflected dot
acquire target in sight picture
shoot/miss
say "what the hell?"
wiggle sight around and realize that the "real dot" was off to the side
reacquire target in sight picture
shoot/hit
Modify as follows:

Acquire target in sight picture, and focus on intended POI.
Draw, and superimpose dot over intended POI.
Shoot/hit.
Say "damn, nice hit!"

Point being: Proper RDS technique is to remain target-focused, not dot-focused.

Also, if you run irons it can help to have them co-witness as low as possible in the optic window, and black them out (or at least run a blacked-out rear and subdued front). Tall "suppressor height" irons that encroach well into the optic window and/or those with bright dots/lines can be distracting when using an RDS.
Abbey wrote: January 20th, 2022, 6:12 am I'm using Sig Romeo sights right now. Is this something that would be less common with other designs?
Possibly.

RDS quality does vary. Some have better optics than others (to include anti-reflective coatings).
The only Sig RDS I've used is the Zero, and it was complete garbage. YMMV...
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Abbey
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Re: handgun RDS reflections

#6

Post by Abbey »

freefly wrote: January 21st, 2022, 6:06 pm
Point being: Proper RDS technique is to remain target-focused, not dot-focused.

Also, if you run irons it can help to have them co-witness as low as possible in the optic window, and black them out (or at least run a blacked-out rear and subdued front). Tall "suppressor height" irons that encroach well into the optic window and/or those with bright dots/lines can be distracting when using an RDS.
Do you ever have issues going back & forth between sight-focused iron sight shooting & RDS?

BTW, I totally agree with an uncluttered field of view. If I get good with RDS and want to use them on carry/defensive guns then I'll start worrying about BUIS/co-witness/whatever. But for just target shooting & competition, the less cluttered the better, in my opinion. If the RDS fails at a match, I'll just scrub that match.
freefly wrote: January 21st, 2022, 6:06 pm
Abbey wrote: January 20th, 2022, 6:12 am I'm using Sig Romeo sights right now. Is this something that would be less common with other designs?
Possibly.

RDS quality does vary. Some have better optics than others (to include anti-reflective coatings).
The only Sig RDS I've used is the Zero, and it was complete garbage. YMMV...
I'm using an R1P on a 226 slide. So far so good from a hardware perspective. Although I do wonder if something like an Aimpoint ACRO would work better for me.

I do have a Romeo zero on a P365, and I agree that it kind of sucks. The small size amplifies the issues that I described earlier and the plastic housing doesn't seem very durable at all (i.e., I'd never trust it to actually carry it), and to top it off, the battery died much earlier than I thought it should from mostly just sitting in the safe.
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Re: handgun RDS reflections

#7

Post by freefly »

Abbey wrote: January 22nd, 2022, 10:06 am Do you ever have issues going back & forth between sight-focused iron sight shooting & RDS?
I did. Once you get used to dots, you naturally target-focus, with both eyes open. Switching to irons, I would revert back to dominant-eye only, and often get in the cycle of changing focus from target to front sight, then focusing on the rear to make sure the front was properly aligned in the notch, then back to the front, then re-acquiring POA, then starting all over again, LOL.

However, I rarely shoot iron-sights on anything now, and anything I carry has a RDS. My eyes are shot, but still OK at distance. So, it's probably going to be RDS-everything for me going forward. Even with excellent vision, the single focal plane of an RDS is more advantageous (and faster) than the 3 focal planes of iron sights (rear sight/front sight/target).
Abbey wrote: January 22nd, 2022, 10:06 am BTW, I totally agree with an uncluttered field of view. If I get good with RDS and want to use them on carry/defensive guns then I'll start worrying about BUIS/co-witness/whatever. But for just target shooting & competition, the less cluttered the better, in my opinion. If the RDS fails at a match, I'll just scrub that match.
Yup. For a gamer gun, there is no reason to run any irons if class/division legal. Though, at the level that it would make any difference, you probably wouldn't be running slide-ride optics anyway.

I'd definitely run irons on an SD/carry gun with an RDS. Though, big `ol suppressor-height sights, and/or hi-viz dots is a bit counter-intuitive. When running an RDS as your primary sighting system, irons are "BUIS" only. As such, you want the least amount of interference/distraction with your RDS sight picture, while still being functional as back-ups if needed.
Abbey wrote: January 20th, 2022, 6:12 am I'm using an R1P on a 226 slide. So far so good from a hardware perspective. Although I do wonder if something like an Aimpoint ACRO would work better for me.
I haven't used an R1P, but anything is a step up from the Zero, lol. I still have/use Trijicon RMRs but so far the best bang/buck ratio I've found is with Holosun (though now their top-tier models are not exactly cheap). YMMV...
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Re: handgun RDS reflections

#8

Post by 338lapua »

I only use the RMR on my pistols. I have my eye on the target and I bring the optic into my line of sight and fire. I started with them by installing one on two different pistols. I burned through 12,000 rounds in a few months but had it within the first couple thousand. Now I have added their use to when I am shooting with night vision and I do the same thing. Center where I want the shot to go in my right eye and bring the dot to the center and fire.

Tape a dot on the wall at about 20 feet and focus on it. Then draw many hundreds of times and bring the dot in the optic to the dot on the wall and dry fire. After you dry fire the optics dot should still be covering the dot.
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