View Full Version : personal protection only, no target shooting.

March 24, 2009, 06:05 PM
Would someone benefit having adjustable sights vs fixed on a handgun if they only carried for personal protection and didn't shoot at targets very often?

I'm asking cuz its a $30 upgrade to get adjustable and I'm not sure if I even need them.

James K
March 24, 2009, 06:13 PM
First, you should know if your gun is sighted in to put the bullets at the point of aim at SD distances. If so, there is no need for adjustable sights.

Also, prominent adjustable sights on a carry gun can snag on clothing when drawing. In general, I would advise keeping a carry gun as "clean" as possible and buying another gun if you want to target shoot (beyond that necessary to attain skill with the SD gun).


March 24, 2009, 06:16 PM
I personally wouldn't bother. I have a real hard time imagining any situation where I'd need to defend myself with a handgun beyond about 10 or 15 yards, and in my limited experience, I've never run across a handgun that was noticeably off at those ranges.

March 24, 2009, 06:21 PM
Accurate fixed sights are fine for SD since you shouldn't have to adjust for distance/windage in the immediate occurance when needed.
Practice at/or less than 7 yards.
Very rarely are you gonna be able to "aim" at an immediate threat as it bears down on you.

March 24, 2009, 06:23 PM
Oh lord, let's not make this another point shooting vs. aimed shooting thread.

A pragmatic reason to not put adjustable sights on your gun is that the most popular style, the Bo-mar style sights have some pretty sharp edges. What that can mean to you is that if you have to do a tap/rack drill or any kind of malf clearance, you stand a decent chance of tearing chunks out of your hand.

Brian Pfleuger
March 24, 2009, 06:27 PM
Considering that SD shootings happen at ridiculously close ranges (like 7 feet), the sights are for reference (at best), don't bother with adjustables.

March 25, 2009, 08:02 AM
thanx, appreciate the answers.;)

The Great Mahoo
March 25, 2009, 08:11 AM
Agreed. Adjustable sights just aren't nessicary on a SD carry gun, IMO.

March 26, 2009, 08:59 PM
Another "no" answer.

March 27, 2009, 06:09 PM
Adjustable sights are not necesary or even desirable to me in a strictly carry weapon. However a good set of night sights are a must.

Deaf Smith
March 27, 2009, 07:58 PM

There are adjustable sights and there are adjustable sights.

Some are quite delicate. Others are very sturdy (Bo-Mar come to mind as for very sturdy ones.)

Other sights are simi-adjustable. These you can get front sights of various hights and the rear sight is driftable. They even make tools just to drift them.

Totaly fixed sights, like on a Smith M10, are tough to sight in if they are off. Others, like Colt NM rear sights, would not take a hard knock if you dropped them (and Colt 1911 National Match front sights fly off alot!)

I find Smith & Wesson revolver sights half way. A bit delicate, but work well 99 percent of the time. Bo-Mar are always good. Millets are ok. MMC look good but I have no experience with them. Hinnie and Novak sights are always good (but usually simi-fixed.)

Now for a combat pistol if I use adjustable sights, I'd get a file and round off the edges (especially Smith&Wesson, Bo-Mar, and Millet ones.) That would do.

Otherwise I'd get simi-adjustable ones like Novak rear sights and a front sight you can change the blade hight (and I prefer dovetailed front sights and Glock style front sight arragements.)

March 27, 2009, 08:23 PM
Sorta depends on the shooter, the weapon, and the resale value of the weapon. I'd guess that most guns are bought and then eventually sold for an upgrade. Ergo, consider the cost of adjustables versus the value at resale. And if you've installed nitesights they could be the adj. type at a very small added investment. Might also be swappable to your new piece if in the same manufacturer line.

March 27, 2009, 08:23 PM
A big visible front sight is what I like on a SD gun. Windage and elevation are inconsequential at <10 yards.

March 27, 2009, 10:49 PM
Adjustable sights are for beyond 25 yards. I use them at 50-100 yards.

March 28, 2009, 12:39 AM
Fixed sights vs adjustable sights:

No - as mentioned above it's not a good idea.

1) Snags on clothing
2) can break so not good for a gun you need for SD

Sighted versus not.

I can simply say come shoot with me and let's shoot at 7-10 yards from concealment and draw and fire at some simple 8 inch steel plates under timed conditions. Let's see how well you can place those shots - hitting the dirt behind the 8 inch steel plates don't count.