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Fiber Optic Front Sight: Just Black it Out?

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Post by Orpanaut on Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:02 pm

In my experience with several different pistols with a fiber optic front sight, I've always gotten the best results by using sight black to obscure the fiber optic rod and turn the sight into a plain, black Patridge sight.

I wonder, though: Shouldn't having a highly visible, attention-grabbing spot on the front sight be an advantage? Is there some alternative sight focus technique that turns a fiber optic front into an advantage?

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Post by -TT- on Mon Sep 28, 2020 8:55 pm

Well, blacking out a fiber means the little bracket it slides into becomes the entire sight - black on black. At that point, why not just use a post?

At best, I'd suggest getting an opaque white insert, or maybe a yellow or gold one. Something less eye-catching than a bright round dot that's not centered in the notch.

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Post by Wobbley on Mon Sep 28, 2020 10:41 pm

If I have a white dot or a fiber optic sight my tendency is to use the dot on the front sight like a dot.  Line up the two adjacent dots, put the front sight dot on the desired point of impact and shoot.  If there are no dots on the rear sight leaf keep the top of the sight level and the front dot centered in the notch.  I have no idea if that will work for bullseye but it works well for combat drills.
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Post by sbtzc on Tue Sep 29, 2020 4:50 pm

For the indoor range, I use white nail polish to creat dots on the front and rear sight. Works well for low light.

I wish I could leave it there for distinguished revolver matches, but there's that pesky rule - 'no external modifications'  Evil or Very Mad

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Post by BE Mike on Wed Sep 30, 2020 8:15 am

Someone wrote in "The Pistol Shooters Treasury" that they would take a screwdriver and make a small "mark" or "scratch"on the front sight, after blackening the sights. He said it helped him focus on what he was supposed to be looking at.
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Post by CR10X on Wed Sep 30, 2020 8:48 am

The black front sight helps one get the front sight in perfect alignment with the rear sight notch ("centered with equal bars of white and level top") that a bright "round" fiber optic ("or even some colored bar front sights") that will tend to glare out and are hard to put in a consistent position with the rear notch.  Putting a "circle" in a "rectangle" does not have those "bars of white" on either side that help with lateral alignment.  And trying to get the "edge or center of a circle" consistently even with the flat top or sides of the rear sight is more difficult than seeing and aligning two flat surfaces for vertical or lateral alignment.  

One of the real keys of getting good open sights is getting a set up that give the best looking "bars of white" that are wide enough to be able to see a clearly and distinctly their relative size and position in the notch; yet not so wide as to be too hard to see when they are not even in width.  Too little space and they will "glare out" as well and not be as easy to see or hold. 

Fiber optic is "good" enough and maybe even better for some things like closer distances and less time for the shot, but not the level of precision for 50 yard 10's and X's most of the time.  

A very small imperfection or mark on the front sight requires one to really focus on the front sight to see that imperfection / mark and ensures the shooter is seeing what he needs to see the maximize the precision potential of open sights. If you can see a small scratch or front sight serrations, then the focus is correct and precise alignment is more achievable. 

Both have their uses, advantages and disadvantages; the decision on which to use is usually based on the game being played to maximize the advantages.

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