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Education / Training Some thoughts on open sights

Some thoughts on open sights

by Tom Gaylord
Writing as B.B. Pelletier

This report covers:

  • History
  • What goes with what?
  • Square post and notch
  • Tapered post and Vee notch
  • Putting this together
  • Summary

One of our readers named Mike U. asked a lot of questions about open sights. In fact, he asked more questions than I can address in one report. I did a report on the different types of open sights in 2012, but that was about the different designs — not how to use them, which was what Mike wanted to know. Today I will look at the subject from that perspective.

This subject is both simple and also very complex. I will attempt to cover the basics for you, and if any of you have more questions you can ask them in the comments to this report.


Guns did not come with sights at first. There were several reasons for this. First, the guns were not accurate. Hitting a man 20 feet from the muzzle was only possible if the gun was fired into a phalanx of men. Guns didn’t have triggers. They were like cannons attached to poles. In fact, they were called hand cannons.

But the design technology advanced rapidly to the point that guns started being held more or less like they are today. When that happened, sights were needed. At first there were only front sights, because the guns were still inaccurate, but eventually they added rear sights and it became possible to hit a man at 60 feet from the muzzle.

Then the rifle came into being and the distance at which men could be intentionally hit stretched out to 600 feet — a tenfold increase almost overnight. Now sights became vital and this is when the open sight took off.

The first practical sights were a combination low front sight and a wide shallow rear vee. These were found on Kentucky rifles starting about 1730. They were vast improvements on what had gone before, and shooters soon learned how to use them well beyond their design parameters. For example, if a rifle was hitting away from the target, the shooter could move the front sight, relative to the rear vee, and get a different impact point. This was called Kentucky windage.

Kentucky sights
The front sight, seen from the side here, and the rear Vee of a Kentucky rifle were huge improvements in the development of sights.


Kentucky windage
To move the impact of the bullet, simply hold the front sight in a different place against the rear sight.

What goes with what?

Mike asked which front sight elements go with which rear sight elements. Today I will show several classic parings that belong together.

Square post and notch

After the Kentucky rifle, sights exploded in many directions at the same time. One of the most common types for handguns and also for target rifles is the combination of a square post front sight and a square rear notch. With this combination it’s easy to keep the top of the front sight level with the top of the rear sight and to keep equal amounts of light on both sides of the front post.

square post and notch
Square post and notch was used for target shooting for many years. When the rear peep sight came into the picture, the front square post was still used for a couple more decades.

These two elements, front and rear, go together. Other elements such as a tapered front post or a post and bead do not work as well in the square rear notch, because it’s harder to guesstimate when they are aligned. And the square front post looks odd when seen through a rear vee notch, or a U-shaped notch.

Tapered post and vee notch

The tapered front post can be used with the square rear notch, as long as the top of the front post is squared off. But it gets paired with the classic rear vee notch most often. The top of the post is held even with the top of the rear sight. This combination of sights (tapered front post and rear vee) is harder to use for target shooting. Often a post and bead front sight is substituted for the tapered post. That makes aiming easier and faster.

tapered post and Vee notch
The front tapered post works like a square post. It’s held level with the top of the rear sight.

A front post and bead is often combined with the rear vee notch. This is where things become confusing. Where you position the bead, relative to the rear sight — at the top of the notch, or at the bottom? And the Vee can also be a U-shaped notch. It works in exactly the same way as the vee.

Vee notch with post and bead
The front bead sight is better-suited to the rear vee notch. But where do you put the bead — top or bottom?

Vee notch with post and bead bottom
Put the bead at the bottom of the notch when the sights are adjusted so the pellet goes to the center of the bead.

Putting this together

Mike — here is what to do. When you have a sight that can be used in several different ways like this, you choose how to use it. I use the post and bead as my aim point (where the pellet will go) for general shooting and hunting, and I use it with a 6 o’clock hold when I shoot targets. Obviously the sights need to be adjusted for each of these options.

bead with bull
When shooting at bullseye targets, sight the bead for a 6 o’clock hold like this.

The question of which sight elements go with which rear sight notches becomes simpler when you look at it this way. There is no one prescribed way to use the elements that is always going to be right. It’s up to the shooter to choose how he wants to use the sights, and then select the option that best supports him.

bead general
When shooting at general targets and when hunting, sight the gun so the pellet goes to the center of the bead and hold like this.


A shooter has a lot of different ways to use open sights. This brief tutorial has explained the basics, I hope. But you must realize there are many more options to using open sight elements. It’s your preference.

author avatar
Tom Gaylord (B.B. Pelletier)
Tom Gaylord, also known as B.B. Pelletier, provides expert insights to airgunners all over the world on behalf of Pyramyd AIR. He has earned the title The Godfather of Airguns™ for his contributions to the industry, spending many years with AirForce Airguns and starting magazines dedicated to the sport such as Airgun Illustrated.

57 thoughts on “Some thoughts on open sights”

  1. B.B.
    I know from past articles that you should concentrate on the front sight, at least for single handed pistol shooting.
    Is this also true for open rifle sights?
    Also, for those of use of advancing age, if you were to get your eye sight “reset” with laser eye surgery, what would you get it set too?
    If you used a rifle scope would this mess you up? Should one wear far sighted or near sighted glasses when shooting though a scope?

    P.S. I am not an Ophthalmologist!

    • Yogi,

      Those are some really good questions. I wear bi-focals for reading, with minimal to no distance correction. I look over them when using a scope, not through them. As for different people’s eye conditions,… I would think the adjustable ocular lens would be the answer. Perhaps those with distance issues would disagree, but that seems to me to be more of a close vision issue, which I have, but is not a problem when using a scope.

      Something I noticed last summer on a particularly bright sunny day,… I grabbed some amber/brown safety glasses. My eye’s were more relaxed and I would imagine that my pupils were more bigger, allowing more light in and thus see better. It worked, at least for me. I plan to experiment with this more. One downside,… when pellet loading, magnification adjustment and side A.O. adjustment, things are a bit “fuzzy”, but not so bad I can’t see. My glasses are not the auto-tinting kind and like I said,…I look over them anyways. With the safety glasses, I have to look through them.

      Off topic, but perhaps relevant to our older reader’s,….. Night driving,.. lights and glare. I tried the yellow safety glasses. Huge 100% difference! I will never drive at night without them again,.. ever. Something to try for those that do not require prescription glasses to drive. They also make the yellow ones over-sized to fit over normal glasses.

      Just a few things from personal experience,…. good day all,…. Chris

      • Chris,
        Thanks for the tip. I will definitely get a pair when next I go up North. Night driving is becoming a pain especially when the roads are wet


        • Pete,

          The best I can say is that it works. Several older folks at work tried it and they feel the same. Yes, it does reduce wet and sign glare. I think the most important thing is that your eyes are less stressed by the onslaught of light and can “re-cover” quicker. This results in being able to see the sides of the road better for really stupid deer, which are abundant. At the twilight hours, where you want more light, but the headlights do not really help, it is like turning the daylight up/back an half an hour. Really nice.

          Best of luck with them and let me know if it works. If it does, spread the word. Us ol’ fogy’s got to look out for one another!


    • Yogi,

      Always concentrate on the front sight when using open sights — no matter what it is on.

      As for eye surgery, if your eye is corrected, I don’t think it matters how the correction is done.

      As for the glasses, the scope brings things in closer and also adjusts for many people’s eyesight — though not for everyone. I seldom wear my glasses when using a scope, but my friend, Otho, always uses his. He is nearsighted.


      • B.B.,
        Are you going to include Fiber optic sights in your next report??
        My biggest beef with them is that there is too much space between the front bead and the two rear dots when looking through them at the target and I have to concentrate far too much to maintain the front bead in the center. I was thinking that if the makers were to put the two rear dots in clear plastic they could move them closer to each other. DONO if that will work.


          • I think fiber optics sights are only preferable for the first and last 15 minutes of the legal hunting day!

            One of my favorite annual muzzle loader hunts is a white tail deer hunt in Oregon. (Actually, ML is just about the only lawful white tail opportunity in Oregon), I would start my walk and stalk day carrying a 50 cal. inline with a Williams rear peep and a Marble fiber optic front sight. I once realized a successful hunt on opening day with it. I setup about 15 minutes before legal daylight arrived and shot a nice doe (what I was after) the minute the sun broke the horizon, according to the official almanac and the time of day displayed on my GPS. It was dark and overcast and I could barely see her.

            Usually after my first walk, which I typically start in near darkness, I switch to my long range 45 cal. barrel (both barrels fit my CVA Accura rifle). My long range barrel has a William rear peep and Lyman globe sight with a post, which permits far more accurate shooting than any fiber optic! I don’t need that kind of precision with the 50 cal.–the ballistics and drop simply don’t warrant it and I’d never take that long of a shot in near-darkness.

      • I operate the same as you, B.B.–bare eyes for scope (except when testing loads or gunsmithing projects with uncertain ballistic outcomes ;)) but I use some kind of correction or aid for irons and open sights, if only a pin hole.

        WRT glasses, I hope I’m not duplicating any of my previous comment posts here. (In addition to presbyopia, age also brings CRS: “(C)an’t (R)emember (S)h…err, I mean (S)tuff.” 😉 If I did, I could not find it in a search.

        “Firearms News” (formerly “Shotgun News”) recently ran an entire article on this of less-than-perfect vision and some new optical aids for vision, “Fuzzy Front Sight? — Tactical RX.”

        It’s in the Volume 70, Issue 7 publication, which probably just left the newstands and magazine racks. 🙁

        But you can still call tactical Rx at 888-807-5165 or check outhttp://www.tacticalrx.com/. Many options exist, and this optometrist is using designs and techniques that I have long wanted as an aging shooting sports enthusiast with presbyopia and a very slight astigmatism. (Still have 20/15 distant vision w/o correction, though.)

        In my experience, you don’t want a progressive lens, because it results in more “prism” effect and image shift when your line of sight passes through the very large “progressive” region of the lens. Get non-progressive lenses. I’ve even resorted to making my own version of what this optometrist now offers in a more sophisticated form. I once ordered large round frame lenses so I could invert my right (sighting) bifocal lens. The best correction for front sight distance is not full near vision magnification/correction too. This optometrist seems to understand all this stuff.

        I almost didn’t post the above. I never know who or what I can plug in any given service or product in most of these airgun forums; online airgun forums seem to me to be uniquely picky, with their ridiculous and extensive “bans” and such, and also militant about enforcement of rules against any unapproved posting of commercial references. Honestly, I don’t know what commercial entities I can post about and who is banned (picky forums need to publish a sticky “ban” list, at least).

        I have no commercial interest in FAN or the above company, but the information might be a game changer for some shooters and I was excited to read the article and discover a source for some of the corrective lens features I’ve wanted for many years now.

        BTW, I just signed-up to join the “dark side.” I ordered a TalonP and stock. I also have a spare L-W barrel in my inventory, which I can machine to fit the TalonP. In addition to the usual 25 cal choices, I’m interested in shooting this gun with 22 cal. Piledriver pellets. If they are accurate, my QuickTarget software (the external ballistics component of Quickload) predicts wonderful things for the 30 gr. .22 Piledriver launched from a TalonP! Of course accuracy is the gating factor for wonderfulness!

        I read you Marauder blogs here (and your recent summary article in FAN), B.B., and I searched all your blogs. As best I can tell, the TalonP was responsible for the smallest 50 yard groups you have ever admitted to shooting with an air gun. Your 6-part blog also provides me with a great starting point in my quest to optimize accuracy and performance. Plus, I like single shots!

        • P.S. I copied and pasted most of the above from my recent Yellow forum post. Guess I didn’t edit-out some stuff that was referring to the Yellow. Nonetheless, I wanted to post it here for your blog readers, fans, and comment participants who don’t visit the Yellow (or visit it only rarely, like me).

        • Cal
          Cool. You will have to give us a update when you get it out shooting.

          I had a Talon SS before the spin lock tanks and put a 12″ .25 caliber barrel in it. Nice shooting gun.

          Got a .22 caliber Talon SS with a 12″ barrel right now. And it’s got the spin lock tank with the Foster fill fitting and gauge. Absalutly love it.

          Again post some info after you get yours. Interested to see how the .25 P model does. Haven’t tryed one of those yet.

          • Thanks, Gunfun1! Sure–I’ll report and probably be looking for advice, based on my experiences and results with my first PCP air gun. There are an infinite degrees of freedom available in the setup and settings of these PCPs. I have on hand or have ordered all the pellets that worked well for B.B. (except I ordered the H&N Baracuda 31.02 gr., instead of the Beeman Kodiaks) and a new one too–the Hunters Supply 25 cal. 49 gr. flat nose cast “pellet” (more like a conical bullet). I don’t have high hopes for it but sure–I’ll try something new (new to us here, I think). I have my SCUBA tank but also picked up a Hill Mk. 4 during the PA’s last 11% / free shipping coupon deal–even before I decided on what PCP I’d like to buy. I don’t know what kind of scope or sight I’ll mount on it initially. I have a few available in my inventory for a star, at least. It seems like even the smaller TalonP / Escape tanks impose scope heights that are close to AR-15 scope height (about 2-1/2″ above bore centerline). That’s okay (and even geometrically “flatter”) when shooting beyond the scope/rifle’s zero (last crossing of projectile trajectory with the LOS). Another factor in my choice of the TalonP was the convertability between all the Talon, Condor, and Escape models. It’s possible to morph one member of all these families into the others or even somewhere in-between. All it takes is new parts and ($$$), but the TalonP is the low-priced entry point.

    • Yogi

      I had my eyes fixed a few years ago due to cataracts . I have plastic lenses in both eyes that make my eyes strictly fixed focus . Have to wear trifocals .
      The doc asked me how I wanted my eyes focused . Has to do with what distance you usually use your eyes . Had mine set for far focus . The trifocals set up three different focus ranges . The top for distance , middle for mid range like near my feet, and the lower lens for reading distance .
      Not suitable for open sights, but works fine with a scope . Would need special lenses for focus on open sights .

      The doc will not normally do surgery if vision can be corrected with glasses . Insurance will not usually cover “unnecessary ” surgery .
      I know how bad my eyes had to be before the doc did the work for me . They use the same standard that the DMV uses for a drivers license . That scares me, because there are a lot of blind people out there driving .


  2. I find I use open sights quite often. My Izzy and my Diana 46E have square post and notch, my Edge had globe and peep until recently and my BSA has I believe what is called barely corn bead on post and v notch sights.

    Out to twenty-five yards I find open sights to be quite sufficient and much easier and quicker to use than most scopes. Out past that these old, tired eyes like a little help for precision placement of my shot, but if I am just hunting feral soda cans I will stretch it way out there.

  3. I’ll second RidgeRunner’s comment that out to 25 yards open sights are very effective.

    In a hunting/plinking situation at typical ranges I use my sights as a reference much as a shotgunner does. I focus on the target and bring the rifle up and fire – all “sighting” and compensation is done subconsciously.

    As a kid, I would set the sights on my pellet rifle such that when I mounted the rifle the front sight blade would be flush with the top of the notch and showing the same amount of light on either side. I would then determine the POI and plot the trajectory. I usually had to widen the rear notch a bit and rasp/sand/pad the stock to get the rifle to point on target. Once the rifle was adjusted, shooting was fast and accurate.

    Shooting paper or at longer ranges is a different situation with the sights becoming more important.

    Funny that this topic came up when it did, last night I took the scope off of my FWB124 and put the bead and peep sights back on.

  4. B.B.

    Great write up! I Love open sights for their simplicity. All my firearm pistols, and air pistols, are square post and notch, and they work great for my old eyes. I like the square post and notch so much that, when I got my first black powder rifle (a .50 caliber Hawken), I filed the semi-buckhorn rear sight to make it a square notch to better match my front post; that worked out great for hunting deer and hogs. I used the open sights that came on my vintage Sheridan (.20 caliber) Blue Streak air rifle for many years; however, for the last 20 years, it has worn a “peep” sight; and I do find that faster (after I opened the .093″ aperture to .108″) and more accurate. My Winchester model 94 .30-30 (since donated to a young military man who needed a deer rifle) had a ghost ring peep sight on the rear, with a black post with a white line down the center. This was a great rifle, and could even be used at twilight. I really light iron sights!
    Keep up the great work, B.B.!

    take care & God bless,

  5. Hello BB! Long time without any comments on your articles, but I have been reading them regularly… I would like to comment on the fact that I use to shoot handguns with open sights, as most of my rifles carry a scope these days.
    For some reason, I think I shoot iron sights better with both eyes open. Well, never won any championship by doing this… Is it common to other shooters, or am I lacking some technique to focus on the front sight properly?

  6. B.B.

    Since your article on Handguns – one eye or two; I have been working on various techniques with open sights.

    I am near sighted with a very dominant left eye and right handed. Not a good combination for open sights. I have learned a lot. Nothing is a complete cure for my vision issues. The following is what I have come up with.

    I thought I kept both eyes open but I really squint with my left eye to keep it from taking over. For shooting a shotgun I would do better to learn to shoot left handed. I do shoot left handed already in certain conditions when needed. I may try it next time I shoot clay pigeons. I have not tried scotch tape on my left glasses lens. I am going to though. It will be better than squinting.

    I have some old glasses from when I was young that work pretty good for open sights. With them I can see the front sight well and the target pretty well. This is as good as it gets. I can not see the back sight, it is a blur. With this setup I focus on the front sight and get my best groups. Side to side is good, but I get vertical stringing. I think that is because I have trouble setting the top of the front sight level with the top of the rear sight. I have tried a peep sight though and get better on the vertical but overall not much improvement.

    I also have a pair of progressive lenses. I can adjust the focus by tilting my head to get a focus on either the target, front sight or rear sight. My eyes are near sighted so much that using the clearest focus on the front sight is not good. The target is too out of focus.

    For me I have the best sight picture when I have my glasses focused just passed the front sight so I can still see the target fairly well. This is a compromise but the best I can do and gives me the best groups, still not great but ok.

    Thanks for the insight. I now understand a little better what works and can enjoy open sights. With my normal glasses that are focused on the target I could barely see the front sight and my groups were poor.


    • Benji-Don,

      Well, I picked up the 760 on the way home and a 12$ green dot made by Gamo. I do not like open sights in that I feel I am not being precise in my aim, if all things are not in focus. Just me. Magnetic induced spin and dart testing shall be this weekend. It will be nice to try something that does not have rifling as I think that was skewing my testing,… as well as the poor scope possibly affecting aim.

      Just an update,….. Chris

      • Chris,

        I like open sights for plinking, but can’t trust my eyesight when testing. Scopes have give me fits when they don’t work. Good luck on the green dot.

        I shot some airsoft in the Apache. They are a little smaller than the buckshot. The group size was even worse with the airsoft bbs. The airsoft was just small enough I could use a patch under the bb like with a black powder muzzle loader. My first two shots at 5 yard were one hole the third was off 1/4 inch either the patch. Much better than the 2 inch groups I was getting. The problem with the patch is the inside threaded end of the barrel. The patch cannot be cutoff at the top of the bb. I am sure the extra patch material in front of the bb will have an adverse affect on accuracy. I my be able to thread a short rod into the end of the barrel with a .25+ ID that will allow me to cut the patch flush with the top of the bb.

        I ordered a new barrel for my Marauder, looks like over a month till I get it.


        • Don,

          Thanks for the update. Patched airsoft ehh? I like the way you think! 😉

          Best of luck with the new M-rod barrel. Hopefully it will make it the ultimate tack driver.

  7. Great to have this in one place. But even this review is partial. There’s no mention of the European wedge sights on the Mauser 98 that I am becoming fond of. Maybe they can be considered a version of the bead front sight. Anyway, I’ve found these to be less desirable for target shooting. But they are ideal for combat shooting where you jjust stab the point into the target and fire. I was also fascinated at another blog post about the elaborate buckthorn sights of the buffalo hunters and how they could be used for holdover.

    Siraniko, yes, when you see the Shaolin monks held lengthwise like logs and swung so that their heads impact sandbags, you have to wonder. I believe the answer, as you said, is a process of micro-fracture and calcification which hardens the bone. Karate has a similar principle, and the striking knuckles of their fists can look pretty gross. I even use a version of this in airgunning where my 130,000 odd shots over time are meant to incrementally improve my accuracy But there is a critical difference from Neanderthal man. The Shaolin monks are using a very controlled conditioning process whereas the rhinos and mammoths whom the Neanderthals were fighting did not have their interests at heart. So, like modern rodeo riders, the Neanderthals suffered major traumatic breaks that didn’t do anything to improve them. But they seem to have been sophisticated enough to heal themselves.


    • One can be surprised by the capacity of the human body to heal itself without the help of modern medicine. As long as the bones are in reasonable alignment even just using splints they will knit together. Open fractures are not compatible with primitive healing though.

      Could I get some pointers from you that you were able to get from Victor? I am trying to get myself back into shooting competition form.

  8. Been buisy. But I wear bifocals for up close reading. I do wear prescription glasses but my eye sight at normal and long distances is pretty good.

    I always wear my glasses even when I shoot. And of course I sight with the upper part of the lens. Not the lower bifocal part of the lens.

    What I have noticed with open sights or even dot sights. That it helps me get on target with the sights with my off eye closed then I open before the shot. And it does sharpen up the open sights and the dot sight also that way. Now scope shooting I can get on target with both eyes open. No closed ng and opening the off eye.

    And yep that is something I like about open sights is the different holds you can do with the sights.

    But the biggest thing is when you do have the gun sighted in at certain distance that is compatible with your pellets trajectory. It’s a point and forget kind of deal if you keep in a certain area of distances. What I like when I use my red dot sight or open sights how well the gun will still hit the target even if I don’t see the open sights clearly. The red dot on the other hand is the same but always a much sharper clear round dot. What is cool is the pellet will hit in that given area. And if you sighted in at the right distance the shot will fall in your sighting devices area. Basically how ell than gun groups and how well you sight in.

    I think a big thing with dot or open sights is to get the correct sight in distance matched up to your guns pellet trajectory. If you think about it a scope has to be sighted at the correct distance also for the scope to work in a given area of distance. If you go out of that area thats when you have to use hold over or under. The scope just has adjustments to accommodate your eye sight. That’s the only reason a scope is more versatile or should I say easier to see with. All 3 types of sights work equally well if you can get your mind around it and the sight zeroed at the correct distance.

    • GF1,

      You and I sound about the same on sight. Got the 760 and a 12$ Gamo dot. We will see. See comment to Benji-Don above. Will check out the red-dot more. If I can not find anything bad, I will probably get it this weekend. If it’s still there,… I will consider it a “sign”,…and that it was “meant to be”. 😉

      The Wally’s on the way home had about 3X the local selection on everything airgun. Not bad for a “quick fix”,…. but I still prefer P.A..

      Did ya’ check out that archery site I mentioned?

      • Chris USA
        No haven’t checked out the archery site.

        Tell me when you get a chance what you think of the 760. Also I would like to see what green dot you got. Post what it is like you did the other day on the red dot you were looking at Wally world.

        • GF1,

          PY-A-4380. The package says 20mm. green dot with a 10 MOA dot. It is cheap. The dot that projects is not 100% round and there is a bit of a “ghost” dot that appears off to the lower right that overlaps the main dot. Plus, at my 24′ testing range, the dot covers too much. I would say at least 1″ if not more. I will take it back after work today and see what else they have. The laser on the 92FS works fine, so maybe that route.

          • Chris USA
            The Simmons dot sight you gave a part number for the other day will be a night and day difference compared to the sight your just got. The big difference is the brightness settings. The one you just got only has 2 brightness settings. On a good dot sight like the one I have there is 11 brightness settings. And no thats not a mis-type. Yes 11 settings. What that does is allows you to select the right size dot in a sense by brightness. You select the right brightness for your lighting condition and distance your shooting at. Believe me that makes all the difference in how accurately you shoot with a dot sight. You want to choose the sharpest crisp dot By brightness that you can.

            And no the laser will not be the same as a dot sight. A laser can only be seen so far by the eye. The dot sight can be seen to infinity. In other words you can point a dot sight at the moon and see the dot plane as day on the moon. If you was to do that with a laser all you would see is a line showing in the sky. The beam or dot wouldn’t make it. And of course you know that you shouldn’t shine the laser up in the sky.

            Think of the dot sight as a scope in a sense without magnification. Think of a dot lit up in the center of your scope reticle. No matter what you place the dot on you will see it when you look through the sight. And you should get a crisp round dot if you adjust your brightness correct on a good dot sight.

            So if you get the Simmons I think you will be happy and surprised with it compared to the dot sight you have now. Pluse the windage and elevation adjustments are more of a turret like a scope. You’ll see if you get a good dot sight. Let me know.

            • GF1,

              Well, I returned the one I got and the only other options were the Simmons I mentioned and a Gamo red laser with a remote switch. I did not get any and do not plan to un-scope the TX or LGU anytime soon. I will check for further reviews of the Simmons. The bigger store had 3 and the smaller local store had just the one. While both were the same price, the local store was the only one selling one on clearance.

              For 760 bb hop up/spin testing, I will just use the open sights. You think that the Simmons would be any good for the Marauder? or should I just get a nice scope?

              • Chris USA
                Me and Reb has been talking below about dot sights.

                Here is a Hawke red dot that is exactly the same as the Tasco I have. I posted a link below for Reb. But here check this out. And I thought you were getting it to try on your 880 or the 760. You should get the Simmons or the one I’m posting the link to when they get back in stock.

                What I was hoping you would do is get a good dot sight to try out so you can see what that type of shooting is about. And you need to get out to at least 15-35 yards at least on a dot sight. Then you will see what there all about. Anyway do as you will. But here is the link.


                • GF1,

                  Looks good and near same price. I will note it. So, if it was you,… scope or red dot for a M-rod? For hunting? While I am just learning about them, I do (not) want the dot covering a target of say 3/4″ bull at 50 yds. Will they do that?

                  Plus, there seems to be the open style (reflex?) and the scope style. Is one better than the other? Still another thing I need to research. Plus, some offer color changes. Plus, some have diff. crosshair configurations too, right? Sorry, all new to me.

                  • Chris USA
                    Scope for sure on the Mrod. Especially if you go .25 caliber. The .25 Mrod starts showing what it’s made out of out past 50 yards.

                    The dot sight is really for 50 yards and in. But not set in stone. It will do good out at farther distances once you spend some time with one and see how they work.

                    And since the dot sight is not magnified usually when you look through it (the scope type). Tell me if you think you could see a 3/4″ target at 50 yards and place the dot on it? Probably not good enough to make precise shots. The dot sights are for fast sight acquisition. You find your object hold on it as centered as possible and shoot. Some of my steel spinners have a 1-1/2″ paddle. At 50 yards the dot sight I have will perfectly fit that paddle diameter. A dot sight is for like birds or maybe a mouse out at 50 yards. A mouse would be a hard target at 50 yards. But a starling would be doable. A rabbit or sqerrial would be a good size target for a dot sight. A raccoon or ground hog even better.

                    What happens is if I place that dot on a rabbit let’s say at 50 yards. The rabbit is facing me sideways. I place the dot in the center of the rabbits body. If that gun will shoot a 1″ group at 50 yards you should hit within that area on the rabbit of your dot placement. Of course wind and such can change the pellets POI.

                    It’s hard to explain. That’s why I say get one and sight it like I said before and do a 10 shot group at a can out let’s say at 35 yards. You will be surprised the group you get.

                    And as far as the two different types. I still like the one that looks like a scope. It acts like a scope when you look through it. How it adjusts like a scope. It’s like using a scope with say 2 magnification maybe. But you have a dot your placing on the target instead of a reticle. And the other type of dot sight like you took back reminds me of how open rear sights adjust. That’s why I don’t like them.

                    But here’s a experment you can try. I think I had a 2.5-10 or 3-12 Hawke scope on the LGU. If it’s still on it. Turn it down to the lowest magnification possible. Then put you a target out at 35 yards and shoot a 10 shot group at it. A can is best but you need to secure it in place if you want to check out your group size after the 10 shots. When you aim just put the (+) reticle in the center of the can each shot. Or the same on the target. Try to always get your aim point centered on the target.

                    What that experiment will do is show you what it’s like to look through a dot sight and the groups you will get. And I know the Hawke scope is not iluminated. But if your scope on the Tx has a red reticle setting with low brightness. But remeber the main thing is you need to be on low magnification to give the effect of the dot sight. And anything above 3 magnification is getting to much for the experiment to give you the feel of the dot sight.

                    Try that scope low power test at 35 yards and tell me your results. You can do that now.

                    • GF1,

                      Thanks for the info. I can see a 3/4″ bull at 50 yds. with naked eye, but would not want the dot covering it. For a ground hog at 50,.. it sounds good, for a start. Ok on a scope for an M-rod. I like the mil-dots. I may get the Simmons yet. Sounds good for a “switch up” for the springers at 30/35 and under. Plus, the springers are set up for Weaver already. PCP is getting closer,…. still a few more things I want to check out.

                      Big question,… you mentioned that you had/have a AR style M-rod. (How was the cheek weld)? The scopes look high mounted. You got to clear the mag,…. but beyond that,….. I would want the lowest mount. Thoughts?

                  • Chris USA
                    On the cheek weld.

                    I had one of the RAI adapters that bolted to the back of the end cap on the Mrod tube. That adapter allowed you to position the AR butt stock at any location in a 360degree axis from looking at the back of the gun.

                    In other words I could place the butt stock high and right or low and right. Or just the opposite for a left hand shooter. In other words there are endless amount of ways that I could off set the butt stock.

                    From what I understand that stock assembly that your wanting to get like Buldawgs and BB has the AR butt stock screws in the back of it. So nott sure if that system allows for cheek weld adjustment.

                    And I know you are probably thinking your going to use the magazine on your Mrod if you get one. I use a single shot tray on my .25 Mrod just for the purpose of using lower height scope rings. Just me.

                    Anway let me know what you find out about on the cheek weld on the stock set up you want to get.

                    • GF1,

                      Yup on the 360 adj. on the RAI. No cheek adjustment other than the 360. (me = probably low and left),.. I guess, with the shot tray, how was (your) cheek weld? With the magazine, what would the scope ring height be? Med,… High? Yup, other factors, but just asking. The cheek weld is really the last big “hurdle” on PCP. Well, a few others, but that has my concern. I do want repeater. Rings will be a factor in the future, so a height would be good to know.

                      Outa’ here,…. Chris

                  • Chris USA
                    I used the mag on my very first Mrod I got which was a .177 then went to a single shot tray. And I done it that way on every Marauder rifle I owned. So I would have to dig out the .25 Maruader mag and see what size ring will work.

                    And you know they say the single shot trays are more accurate than the magazine.

  9. Chris,
    Most likely heading back up in summer. My sister in law who is in her sixties has stopped driving at night for the same reason. Will recommend to her for sure.

    Thanks again.


  10. I really never liked square notch and square post, especially not on pistols where the length of your arm actually dictates how much of the notch is filled, if you have short arms like me theres always an imprecise gulf each side and if you are a rangy six foot five the front sight can often black out the notch, the platform provided by the front sight is also pretty hard to centralise under a smaller target/bullseye
    A pointed post or Perlkorn/Barleycorn front sight gives you the guidance of the tip or apex to aim precisely with and I don’t find the Barleycorn certainly any slower to get target acquisition with
    The sight picture is also a touch subjective, I know people who shoot with the post quite high in the notch covering the bull whereas I tend to make an equal diamond with the “v” and a tapered post with the bullseye on the point or with a perlkorn/Barleycorn front sight settle the “corn” in the “v” and make a figure of eight with the front sight and bullseye.

    • Dom
      That’s exactly why I like a notch and post sight.

      When I can see a line of day light on each side. Then I know I truly have the post lined up to the notch. If the post takes up the hole notch then I don’t know if the shot will go a little to the left or right. No way to tell how centered the post is to the notch.

        • Reb
          I have set my red dot sight up before where my target sets on top of the dot.

          Now I set the dot dead on the target usually sighted at 30 yards. I found that works better. That way the dot is usually placed center mass of the target or pest when I shoot. I aim where I want to hit by covering that spot. And what I found is I can even shoot the dot sight out at some pretty long distances sighted that way. For the long shots the farther out I shoot. The more the target starts setting above the red dot. In other words yep a six o’clock hold as distance increases.

          • Wow I messed that up.

            Suppose to say the farther the distance the more the red dot is setting above the target. And yep it’s just the opposite of the six o’clock hold.

            • I really like my Daisy electronic point sights with the 2 position switch for their smaller red dots!
              Those big, bright Green dots cover up the whole target by the time you use them at any respectable range. I use the Daisy’s on low except in really bright conditions.

                  • Reb
                    This is exactly like the Tasco I have. Same features even. I think they are probably generic made and named by brand. But check out the dimensions. I think it’s only like 4″ long. And I have had my Tasco for at least 11 years and on many guns. Very good dot sight.


                  • Reb,

                    Like you, I do not want a dot that will cover a bull, or point of aim,… like a head shot. I will stop by TSC this weekend. I will be surprised if they have it. Notes made of your suggestion.

                    I am open to anything new, so I will not rule out dots, cheap or otherwise. In the summer, my 50 is dark into the woods. The UTG scope helps that. The Hawke does not illuminate. A mil-dot scope is pretty easy to use. But, if a dot can get the same precision,.. I am open to the idea. I do like precision.

  11. JH

    Question of the day —–

    When switching
    Discovery on air — to co2 —

    Pell gun oil — or Silicone Chamber Oil — or ???

    When switching back to air — then what ???

  12. BB–
    and What I expected — —
    But it never hurts to be sure —

    As you told me so many times in our ancient chats and conversations — some going back to pre-blog days when you were “merely” an “article” writer for PA and for so many other publications — and I used to pester you to death with so many newbie questions — — and you ever so kindly and patiently reminded me- that the only stupid question is the one you don’t ask —
    If YOU have the ability to search your blogs/articles by commenter —- which I’ve never been able to figure out— you will discover that today is not really a “welcome” to the blog — but a “hello again” — JH and jj being my former and still “handles” as it were —

    It’s getting late — we’re both getting tired — and goodness knows we both desperately need our beauty sleep —

    Until later —


  13. I have an old family carbine; a Winchester mod ’84 chambered in 25-20, ( prob. one of the first “hot” cartridges after the transition to smokeless) with a leaf sight (mil.?) that you could flip up and was calib. 100 yds 200, etc. How I loved that sight. But when I bought a used BenjimanSheridan sic 30-40 yrs ago I put a Williams peep sight on it. You could unscrew the “peep” and have a ghost ring which was even faster but I have never felt the need. My personal opinion is as your eyes start to fail, it is much easier to put that hazy front sight into the center of that fuzzy rear ring than to line it up on a V.
    Now I have purch. an inexpensive powerful spring .22 cal rifle for back yard varmints that has a lousy rear sight. I would love to put a Williams peep on it but though it has groves on it behind the “V”, my calculations indicate that the Williams won’t quite fit. I have an AIR FORCE .22 with a scope, so I would really like to put another peep on. ANY SUGGESTIONS?

  14. Marshall,

    Welcome to the blog.

    There aren’t many sporting peep sights made today and Williams makes most of them. The name on the sight may be a gun company like Mossberg, but Williams actually makes it.

    What you may need to do is have an adaptor made for the rifle and mount the peep sight to that. That will open up a broader range of positioning possibilities.


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