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Old December 10, 2013, 08:23 AM   #26
Qtiphky
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Crimson Trace

I was of the school of no lasers for many years. However, in reading more and more concealed carry and self defense books, a lot of the trainers are strongly recommending the use of lasers as both a training aid and in actual field work. I bought a crimson trace for my M&P compact and love it. I have become more accurate as my trigger pull has become more smooth through meaningful trigger practice due to the laser. Also, the transition from "the pretty red dot" on the target to open sites if you can't find the red dot is really a non issue. Think about it, if you have it zeroed for where you aim, the red dot will be exactly where your open sites are as well, so you actually have your choice. Yep, I understand the argument that if you site it in for 50 feet, which is what is recommended, that that is the only distance it will be on at and therefore will be off at every other distance is truly a myth in my book. Try it. The distance that it will be off from close work out to 50 feet is still within the working zone that you need to be in for defensive skill sets. Think about how many times you should "legally" engage a target outside of 50 feet if this is on your carry weapon. Probably not many, and if you still practice with your sites, which you should, they will be on target anyway. Yes, in bright daylight the red is difficult to see, which is why you practice with open sites too. Just my two cents worth. I fought it, but now I see the value as another item to help me protect me and my family.
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Old December 10, 2013, 09:22 AM   #27
Gaerek
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That's not why I don't like lasers at all. The parallax issue is a non-issue. It's the fact that I believe you are unnecessarily complicating your system. You're adding a sighting system that relies on additional mechanical and electrical parts to function, and you're spending training time building the intricacies of the sighting system when you have a perfectly good and capable system built in.

I do think there are good uses for a laser (see previous post). For me, however, it's a waste of training time and money adding one to my carry guns. I have nothing against those that use them. If it works for you, great. For me, it's unnecessarily complicating my gun, and my training. It's the same reason I only train one kind of reload. When the critical time comes, I don't want to be fumbling with what the best reload for the situation is. I just want more ammo in my gun NOW.
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Old December 10, 2013, 09:34 AM   #28
MTT TL
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My point was I don't want to spend training time with a sighting system that's more complex and less reliable than good ole iron sights. You will fight like you train. If you train, expecting to see a pretty red dot on your target, if you run into a situation where that dot isn't there, you now have to make conscious moves to point that gun where you want it. It takes time.
I would say if anyone is training that way than there is a serious defect in the way they are training.
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Old December 10, 2013, 10:22 AM   #29
Gaerek
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I would say if anyone is training that way than there is a serious defect in the way they are training.
And yet, I see this exact thing every time I'm at the range. A laser becomes a crutch to many people (not everyone). But again, for me, it's something that adds complexity to an already complex system, that doesn't really add anything that can't be gained through other means.
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Old December 10, 2013, 11:17 AM   #30
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There are times when focusing on the laser is useful but not normally from a normal firing position.
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Old December 10, 2013, 11:18 AM   #31
dgludwig
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I'm so used to looking for the front sight when I draw that I found I had to put conscious effort into focusing on the target to pick up the laser.
I guess it could be useful for point shooting in some situations, but - for me anyway - it's faster to find the front sight and actually aim than it is to try to find the dot. And since the only real advantage to point shooting is speed, it didn't even really work out all that well for me there.
This has been my experience as well. But just because you have a laser on the gun doesn't mean you have to use it in every circumstance. There are enough other potential scenarios (i.e., "shooting from odd angles" or from behind cover when you can see the dot but not the stock sights) to warrant having a laser as a "back-up".
And possibly the weakest argument against the laser is the battery going dead. As I pointed out earlier, not only is having the battery die extremely unlikely if any attention at all is given to it but, unless your irons fell off at the same time, you still have them to go to. It's as simple to check the status of the battery as it is to verify the gun is loaded.
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Old December 10, 2013, 11:27 AM   #32
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As I pointed out earlier, not only is having the battery die extremely unlikely if any attention at all is given to it but, unless your irons fell off at the same time, you still have them to go to. It's as simple to check the status of the battery as it is to verify the gun is loaded.
I see that argument as the same as your vehicle battery going dead for the first time when you need to start your car to get away from an angry mob. The likelihood of these two incidents coinciding is statistically very bad.
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Old December 10, 2013, 12:36 PM   #33
Gaerek
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There are times when focusing on the laser is useful but not normally from a normal firing position.
I agree.

But this is why I practice point shooting. It's a skill that works with any gun, with or without a laser. And I'm quite good at it. Would a laser make me better at it? Maybe. But I still see little reason to add complexity to my already complex gun and training regimen when I can do almost as well without. The $200-300 (if I were to get lasers, they'd be lasergrips as I'd want something that won't interfere with my current holsters and doesn't require anything to activate) I could spend on a laser for just one of my guns could be better spent on more training. Outfitting all the guns I carry regularly? I could go to a MAG 40, or a class at Gunsite for cheaper.
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Old December 11, 2013, 11:33 AM   #34
MarkCO
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In multiple debreif studies of trained persons, both civilian and LE, it has been found that the only "focus" that could reasonably be attained during a hostile encounter was a target focus. Very few claimed to actually see the front sight. In one study, with multiple cameras and a specific focus on the shooters eyes, even the few who claimed front sight focus either had a target focus or a rapid shift back and forth from target to front sight.

I won't go down the road of debating point shooting versus, index shooting versus front sight focused shooting, but I will say this. EVERY top shooter I have spoken with to determine what they ACTUALLY see shooting at high speed admits to having no focus on the front sight inside about 10 yards. Some will push that out a little further. We have been so drummed into thinking "front sight, press" that as skills develop, some don't even realize that they have moved on to a wider range of skills.

The fact of the matter is that very few people will ever focus on their front sight in a lethal force encounter, even though they "think" they will. Having a projected laser (or a reflex type sight) has been proven, by almost the entire skill range of shooters, except the very top tier, to result in higher hit percentages in a shorter time span.

Like many here who have dismissed the laser, so did I for years. I called it a "crutch" for poor shooting skills. I have however put my perceptions to the test and found some flaws in those hard held opinions, so I changed. Facts are still facts, whether you agree with them or not.
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Old December 11, 2013, 11:42 AM   #35
ClydeFrog
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Post #34....

I disagree with post #34.
Retired NYPD officer & former US Customs Service firearms instructor(FLETC) Jim Cirello wrote about a incident after a use of force incident while assigned to the elite "Stake Out" unit while he was with the NYPD.

He said during the debrief that he could count the number of serrations on his duty revolver's front sight.

In real lethal force events, there are several factors involved. Tunnel vision, disorientation, loss of hearing(combat deafness), etc.
Proper training & marksmanship can help address those points.

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Old December 11, 2013, 12:04 PM   #36
Gaerek
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The fact of the matter is that very few people will ever focus on their front sight in a lethal force encounter, even though they "think" they will.
Where is this "fact" so I can verify it? Or am I to take your word for it? Many things I've read, from Mas Ayoob to Jim Cirillo directly contradict that "fact." From them, there is much anecdotal evidence that shows someone who trains on "front sight" shooting will shoot using the front sight when the SHTF. And these same people show that these shooters are more accurate than the ones that become target fixated in these instances.

Please enlighten us where you got this "fact of the matter."

EDIT: Clydefrog beat me to it
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Old December 11, 2013, 12:37 PM   #37
MTT TL
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I could go to a MAG 40, or a class at Gunsite for cheaper.
That works for you. I buy my lasers mostly aftermarket from people who bought them and did not like them. The last three CT lasers I purchased were all under $100 each.
Quote:
I agree.

But this is why I practice point shooting.
I am talking about situations where point shooting does not work either. This is starting to leave the realm of what is practical and useful for most people but is useful for military and LE.
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Old December 11, 2013, 01:02 PM   #38
Gaerek
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I've never said there aren't situations where a laser isn't useful, or even the best option. I've always stated there are uses for a laser. I believe they are far more valuable as a training tool, than as a practical shooting tool. Heck, the reason I can point shoot as well a I can is because I had a Streamlight TLR-2 that would let me do dry fire point shooting exercises at my home.

My point has not revolved around there being no uses for a laser. My point has more or less revolved around a cost/benefit analysis of purchasing one (or multiples in the case of my other guns). Even using your $100 price range for a laser (I personally don't like buying things with electronic components, used...guns sure, not lasers/lights/etc) that's 6 boxes of practice ammo for my primary carry. In other words, 300 rounds worth of training that will make me a better shooter in ALL aspects of shooting, in some way.

For another $25 on top of that initial $100, I can get in a 16 hour, advanced defensive handgun class, taught by an instructor who's NRA certified in all pistol categories, and is also one of the firearms trainers for the local PD. If anyone tells me a laser will make me a better shooter than that training, I'd call them a liar to their face.

I have limited funds and limited time. I have to try to make every minute on the range count. I have to try to make every round I fire (which of course, equates to every penny I spend gun stuff) count. I'm lucky if I can make it to the range more than once a month. I typically don't shoot more than 100 rounds per session...I just can't afford that much ammo. Even that $100 price point is equivalent to about 2 months worth of range sessions, money wise. Having the equipment for the few circumstances where a laser is the best or only option, isn't worth the money I could spend to make myself a better overall shooter.

Laser advocates love to point out situations where iron sights or point shooting don't work. They, of course, leave out all the instances where iron sights and point shooting are far superior. I live in Tucson, AZ. In the middle of the day at a range of more than about 10 yards, that dot disappears...no matter what situation I'm in. Since most of the time I'm out of the house, it's bright outside, the laser is relatively useless.

I would never tell someone their decision to use a laser is the wrong one. The most I might do is help them to fully consider the decision. Most of the people I know who didn't fully consider everything about the laser, ended up not liking them because they had false expectations of what they would do. Those that made the considerations and understood what a laser can and won't do, usually stuck with them.

Having said all of that. If someone gave me a CT lasergrip for my EDC (a gift, or whatever) I'd almost certainly put it on my gun. Not because I think it will make me better, but because I understand it's a tool and has certain times and places it's useful. But those certain, very specific, times and places aren't worth me spending my own hard earned money on.
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Old December 11, 2013, 01:11 PM   #39
MTT TL
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That makes a lot of sense give your circumstances.

I would agree that "not" putting one is mostly just as good under certain circumstances. If people won't train properly, understand how to use their equipment than they may be better off without it. Just like with a firearm.
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Old December 11, 2013, 06:12 PM   #40
dgludwig
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In multiple debreif studies of trained persons, both civilian and LE, it has been found that the only "focus" that could reasonably be attained during a hostile encounter was a target focus. Very few claimed to actually see the front sight. In one study, with multiple cameras and a specific focus on the shooters eyes, even the few who claimed front sight focus either had a target focus or a rapid shift back and forth from target to front sight.

Please cite your source(s). I find it hard to believe that searching for a dancing red dot on the target is faster than acquiring a sight picture with the front sight in a "point and shoot" situation.
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Old December 11, 2013, 09:03 PM   #41
cjwils
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In looking through this thread, I see comments from people who are probably excellent young or early middle aged men with good eyesight. I was like you not that long ago. Wait a few years, and you might be happy to have a laser on your gun.
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Old December 12, 2013, 12:41 PM   #42
Strafer Gott
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All cats look grey in the dark. If I'm not carrying night sights, give me the laser. It's still no substitute for a flashlight and point shooting if you need to identify your target first, which is a prime tenet of my religion.
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Old December 12, 2013, 02:11 PM   #43
ClydeFrog
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Clyde Carcas....

I'd suggest viewing the free CT DVD or maybe a few online videos of CrimsonTrace's Clyde Carcas(check spelling) talking about laser systems & lasergrips.
He goes into detail about tactics & even clearly states that laser aiming systems do not replace basic marksmanship.
They only augment the sights in certain situations.
Lasers or white lights are only tools to aid the gun owner/armed professional in a lethal force event.
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Old August 16, 2014, 05:45 PM   #44
Bennyfatsack
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Each to their own I suppose, for my part probably irrelevant to post but hey why not, I have 4 lasers fitted to rifles and shotguns , no pistols.absolutely love them, absolutely rely on them no! For low light/night hunting namely rabbits pigs unbeatable fun and improves strike rate dramatically, through quick target aquisition and a visual aid in lining up fast moving target a strong green laser is second to none especially with night shooting when iron sites sometimes hard to eye up precisely unless very familiar and practised, but even at that the laser allows for quick firing before even reaching your regular or optimum aiming position, I rate them for hunting! And you don't have to spend a heap my last 3 green dot lasers cost me under$60 aus and have held zero on a 12g lever gun for over 200 rounds
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