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Old March 19, 2020, 01:03 PM   #1
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Blacked Out???

Hey all, I've been reading a lot of gun owners are purchasing or doing it themselves, to have their pistols rear sights "Blacked Out". How exactly do you sight like this or is this kind of a "point and shoot" thingy. What are the advantages of this? At 69, it's never to late to be edjycated.
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Old March 19, 2020, 01:40 PM   #2
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First, you need to explain what 'blacked out' means.
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Old March 19, 2020, 02:11 PM   #3
Jim Watson
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A target shooter will black his sights with smoke or paint for sharp contrast with the target. Quite the opposite of "point and shoot"
Even an action shooter will often black out the white or colored spots, dots, and outlines on the rear sight to direct his attention to the front sight in a hurry. I have done so.
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Old March 19, 2020, 03:04 PM   #4
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I have used black rear sights with front night sights, white dot fronts,etc. I have read that the human eye will try to center the front in the rear notch. Seems to work for me. The down side for me was during very low light and night time training. The rear black notch was harder to initially line up than with night sights, white dots,etc. One I carried every working day for several years was a Colt Government. I tried several different combinations, but ended up with a black rear sight and front night sight...
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Old March 19, 2020, 05:25 PM   #5
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The Springfield Armory Range Officer Elite Target has a flat black rear sight with fiber optic front, which, for me, is quite excellent for Target shooting. I would not want that sighting system on my EDC.
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Old March 19, 2020, 08:39 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by AgedWarrior View Post
The Springfield Armory Range Officer Elite Target has a flat black rear sight with fiber optic front, which, for me, is quite excellent for Target shooting. I would not want that sighting system on my EDC.

I’ve used that exact setup on EDC pistols. Worked great. Even were the fiber optic to break, and that never happened after thousands of rounds and idk how many presentations to and from the holster, you still have the body of the front sight as a reference.

To the OP, some people simply like it. They find, as others mentioned, that it better highlights the front sight, and many instructors teach front sight focus.

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Old March 19, 2020, 11:13 PM   #7
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The idea is to have VERY black sights to give the best contrast against the white target paper.

Many bullseye target shooters use an one sight scheme where the round black area of the target is balanced on top of the front sight.

Shiny sights will mess you up, so you want very black and also matte texture. People use soot. A candle or lighter will work, but the soot from an acetylene flame is thick.
Here is an acetylene sooter you can buy-

This is specialized stuff for people that shoot serious open sight competition but it's also (or used to be) in the US Army official manuals on how to shoot. You blacken your sights and ... etc etc.

Shooting in the field is different than competition shooting at high level. Me.. I did okay and I always preferred to hold my target half way up the circle, so I was shooting to point of aim. Still, that's NOT how the really good guys do it.

I mean, you see all those fancy ISPC guys dropping empty mag after empty mag in the dirt... we don't do that either.
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Old March 19, 2020, 11:30 PM   #8
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It is common among several types of shooters at high proficiency. Most of my pistols have a black rear and some type of front sight that is brighter. That might be fiber optic, Tritium or some combo of light color and a fiber optic or Tritium. I have my iron sighted rifle the same way, black rear and Tritium front. Bullseye shooters before there was fiber optic would have black rear sights and gold bars inset in the front ramped blades, or colored inserts.

Whatever you use, the goal is to have the front sight be easy to pick up fast and the rear sight to not be distracting. Does not matter if for speed, accuracy or both, same principles apply to both. The only departure for the speed or combat shooters is that at some distance and closer, you don't see the sights...they are still there, and lined up, but when the skill level passes a certain level, the mind no longer needs to settle the sight picture and the shooter fires as soon as the "acceptable" sight picture occurs without conscious thought. That too is aided by not having anything other than a black rear sight.
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Old March 20, 2020, 12:08 AM   #9
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I'm waiting on the eye surgeon to get my corneas replaced. My master eye has a cataract bad enough the eye Dr wouldn't even write a eyeglass prescription for it.
I'm saying my eyes are not typical .

The difficulty I have with three dot sights ,if I describe it in terms of sound,the rear sight dots are too "loud" and I have difficulty finding,or "hearing" the front sight. Its hard to see through the bright rear dots.

f I concentrate,I can do it,but its slow.I think in a tritium sight I'd prefer a rear horizontal bar or a lolly-pop stick.

The carbide lamp sight blackers are nostalgic,but Birchwood Casey sight black is less trouble.

I've been told the cataract surgery will amaze me.
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Old March 20, 2020, 03:35 AM   #10
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I have had stainless pistols that had stainless sights. For those, I 'black out" the sights with a Sharpie marker. Works well enough, dirt cheap and more durable than you would think, though far from permanent, its simple fast and easy to reapply or touch up.

Traditionally many match shooters "smoke" their sights, not to make them black primarily, but to kill any glare. Lampblack is totally flat and non reflective.
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