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Irons vs Dot For Accuracy

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Post by Soupy44 9/25/2021, 6:39 pm

First topic message reminder :

Assuming a shooter has good vision to see both well, which has the higher ceiling, irons or dot?

Discuss!

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Post by Jack H 10/7/2021, 4:48 pm

The times I had my best SF targets in 50 some years were both with irons.  Yeah both times my head was in the game and that lot of ammo had no flyers in it.  (ha ha)
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Post by john bickar 10/7/2021, 11:49 pm

WesG wrote:
Gary Collette wrote:Merick,
with irons you have the following.
1. keeping the front sight centered in the rear sight
2. keeping the front sight at the correct elevation within the rear sight

My 2 cents ...

I've been working on this from a different angle, in that I think this is backwards from a psychological pov.

We're supposed to focus on the front sight, so I've been trying to  consciously think of it in terms of aligning the rear sight with the front, in the hopes it helps me to maintain my focus on the front sight instead of shifting it back and forth, or worse, just back. 

On a (rare) good day I've been surprised (shocked actually) by how well I've shot with irons. Camping with some friends recently, I was running mag after mag thru my SA-A1 at 25 yards. During a reload, one who'd been watching said 'dude, I would not want to get in a gunfight with you'.

"Umm, yeah. I'm not exactly sure how this is happening, but I hope I can somehow make it continue."

I'll cop to sometimes visually focusing more on the rear sight than the front when I was shooting well.

Again, back in the days when I was shooting iron sights a lot, and shooting them well, I honestly didn't pay much attention to them. I just kinda let them do their thing and I worked on the trigger.

That probably explains why I never really did much as a rifle shooter.
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Post by WesG 10/8/2021, 11:42 pm

Yeah, yeah ...

Was that 97-6X the 14 shot alibi?

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Post by Gary Collette 10/9/2021, 7:41 am

Soupy,
I'll counter your counter.
My limited understanding of the shot process is that when we practice
correctly such as shooting a blank target to concentrate on trigger manipulation,
we do this to embed that aspect of the shot process into our subconscious
so that during a match we do not need to focus ( think about) any one aspect of the shot.
When I was at my best many years ago there was no thinking involved, I just lifted the pistol and shot.
Now many years have gone by and a 22 year break in any shooting at all so I need to 
work through establishing these things back into my brain.
This is taking time and a lot of thoughtful practice.

G
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Post by Colt711 10/10/2021, 12:45 am

Jon Eulette wrote:Jim Lenardson broke 2670 four times with irons!
Jon

Jon
Jim came to practice one night later in his career to try out scopes an armorer had set up for him. I 'm quite certain he didn't do better w/ them, quite likely nearly the same.

Jim could SHUT OUT whatever was happening (to him) at once concentrating on shooting! 

What was the AMU shooter's name that set the all time record 2680 Or 81? I don't think dots were widely used then.

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Post by Colt711 10/10/2021, 1:03 am

Ed,

Regarding working hard: I'm sure you have read Blankenship's treatise in which he mentions mounting an (hydraulic) strain gauge to a 1911 frame and working first on vertical then horizontal movement. I'm bet most of those top old guys spent a lot of time on their shooting!

There are always exceptions to the "crowd"!

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Post by Colt711 10/10/2021, 1:10 am

Axehandle wrote:First broke 2600 with iron sights at 2606 in 1984.  After the change to red dots my 2700 personal best increased  by only 18 points to 2624 in 1986.  Averaged 2615 in '87.  What I found was that I was not physically and mentally exhausted at the end of an all day red dot 2700.  
FWIW anyone else hear that Hershel Andersons' record would have been better than 2680 had he not choked on the last rapid fire target?

Axe,
I heard a different version of that rumor: he lost that target due to being observed lighting a joint as scoring the previous target was going on!
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Post by Ed Hall 10/10/2021, 7:10 am

Hey Ron,

Hershall Anderson has the record of 2680-159x set in 1974.

As to the strain gauge, I made an electronic version back in the '90s that had a tone generator.  You placed the sensor between your finger and the trigger and the greater the pressure, the higher the tone's frequency. You could look for a steadily increasing tone.  The Rika trainer also has (had) a pressure sensor accessory.

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Post by Sa-tevp 10/13/2021, 7:36 pm

Ed Hall wrote:...
As to the strain gauge, I made an electronic version back in the '90s that had a tone generator.  You placed the sensor between your finger and the trigger and the greater the pressure, the higher the tone's frequency. You could look for a steadily increasing tone.  The Rika trainer also has (had) a pressure sensor accessory.

That's clever and also allows you to still watch the sight alignment to see the effect.

For the shooters that came near Herschel Anderson's score, were they using iron sights or red dots?
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Post by chiz1180 10/13/2021, 8:19 pm

Sa-tevp wrote:
Ed Hall wrote:...
As to the strain gauge, I made an electronic version back in the '90s that had a tone generator.  You placed the sensor between your finger and the trigger and the greater the pressure, the higher the tone's frequency. You could look for a steadily increasing tone.  The Rika trainer also has (had) a pressure sensor accessory.

That's clever and also allows you to still watch the sight alignment to see the effect.

For the shooters that came near Herschel Anderson's score, were they using iron sights or red dots?
Having watched a few 2670 shooters shoot, Dot vs Irons seemed to have minimal effect, if any, in their performance.
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Post by Ed Hall 10/13/2021, 9:23 pm

i shot with Brian Zins on a holiday weekend, Sat at 12th in MD and Sun at Fairfax in VA, when he shot three records.  Along with the records, he fired 2678 on Sat and 2679 on Sun.  He said on Sunday that he wished he could find a match on Monday.  He also said Hersall Anderson was tough.  Brian was shooting dots at the time.

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Post by rreid 10/16/2021, 9:17 pm



I can see my front sight serrations so long as the targets aren't crazy bright. I would love to hear more about ways to reduce glare as that would have been very applicable this past Saturday. Those targets were bright!
I don't have a way to make the targets less bright, but to make the front sight more visible I put a small dab of white-out on it. Just enough so I can see it if I really focus.
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Post by Colt711 10/16/2021, 9:22 pm

rreid wrote:


I can see my front sight serrations so long as the targets aren't crazy bright. I would love to hear more about ways to reduce glare as that would have been very applicable this past Saturday. Those targets were bright!
I don't have a way to make the targets less bright, but to make the front sight more visible I put a small dab of white-out on it. Just enough so I can see it if I really focus.
Use tinted or variable glasses

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Post by Soupy44 10/16/2021, 9:28 pm

20/20 hindsight, I have polarized Oakley's I wear a lot at work, they were in my bag that day. Will give them a try next time!

Will be interesting next weekend. I plan to shoot my wad gun for the first time since 2018. Plan to shoot with a dot on my 22 as well. I'm guessing my scores will be all over the place since I haven't shot a dot in so long.

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Post by orpheoet 10/18/2021, 10:45 am

I think the fact that nobody has broken 2680 in 50 years now mostly in the red dot era says something about which has the higher ceiling. Personally my 2 best indoor slow fires were both shot with irons. 98's with a Colt .38 wadcutter and a M52-2. But as others have mentioned irons are exhausting!
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Post by Ed Hall 10/18/2021, 4:47 pm

orpheoet wrote:I think the fact that nobody has broken 2680 in 50 years now mostly in the red dot era says something about which has the higher ceiling. Personally my 2 best indoor slow fires were both shot with irons. 98's with a Colt .38 wadcutter and a M52-2. But as others have mentioned irons are exhausting!
I'm of the opinion it's more to do with numbers.  How many shooters are regularly shooting in the 2670s today vs. how many were regularly shooting in the 2670s back then?  Then, we have to consider how many actual "in their prime" competitors for then and now.

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Post by chiz1180 10/18/2021, 4:53 pm

Ed Hall wrote:
orpheoet wrote:I think the fact that nobody has broken 2680 in 50 years now mostly in the red dot era says something about which has the higher ceiling. Personally my 2 best indoor slow fires were both shot with irons. 98's with a Colt .38 wadcutter and a M52-2. But as others have mentioned irons are exhausting!
I'm of the opinion it's more to do with numbers.  How many shooters are regularly shooting in the 2670s today vs. how many were regularly shooting in the 2670s back then?  Then, we have to consider how many actual "in their prime" competitors for then and now.
Arguably their are also fewer people in general shooting above 2600 let alone 2650 or 2670. Part of it is competitive drive too. You can essentially win almost any match with a 2650 these days and many others with a 2600.
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Post by Jon Eulette 10/18/2021, 4:56 pm

Ed Hall wrote:I'm of the opinion it's more to do with numbers.  How many shooters are regularly shooting in the 2670s today vs. how many were regularly shooting in the 2670s back then?  Then, we have to consider how many actual "in their prime" competitors for then and now.
Back in the early 90’s we had close to 100 2650 shooters still competing. Lotsa guys shooting high 2660’s and the occasional 2670. Henderson has broken 2670 more than all the other 2670 shooters added up; if I’m wrong I’m barely wrong lol. He has done it a lot!
Now we have less than 20 guys regularly shooting 2650. Zurek’s 2679 is the closest anyone has come in a while. There are a couple of present day shooters who can still potentially break 2680. I’m looking forward to seeing someone do it!
Jon
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Post by Slamfire 4/27/2022, 3:19 pm

The only times I have seen shooters use irons is during CMP service or revolver matches. So few shooters have used irons, that I cannot make a comparison between the optic shooters and the iron sight shooters. There is a two times NRA Bullseye Champ around here, and when he shoots, he uses a dot sight.

this is one of his pistols.

Irons vs Dot For Accuracy - Page 2 EQ5WbJU

I am of the opinion that the better you can see, the better you will shoot. The sight does not have to be Dot sight either.

The owner of this pistol, he is a Master Class shooter, and this pistol has a low power scope on top

Irons vs Dot For Accuracy - Page 2 YaP8Rba


The owner installed a Volquartsen trigger, don't remember if he installed the sear, put the scope on top, new grips. Otherwise the pistol is stock. One does not have to spend a lot of money to shoot good scores. You just have to hit the middle.


This is an AMU pistol, looks like an optical sight on top. These kids have much better eyes than me.  I asked an AMU shooter how many rounds he fires through his 45 ACP per month, and it was between 5000 and 7000 rounds. I am sure that if their scores were better with irons, they would be using those exclusively.



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I do know, since the NRA went optical for Service Rifle and Match rifle, scores are higher, and probably the old records are falling. I am sad about this, as it is easier to shoot with a scope than with irons, and learning sight alignment and trigger pull was a good thing.


I never shot competition pistol with irons, and don't care to. Those who shot cleans at 50 yards with irons have my respect. Not that there are a lot of SF cleans with dots, I have seen 99's and 98's, but 100's are rare.



I love my Ultra Dots, just put the dot on the black, and jerk the trigger! Hard! No



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Post by adminbot1911 4/27/2022, 6:53 pm

Haven't seen much difference in pistol between irons and optics, though to be fair I am committed to irons until I go out in all pistol disciplines.

An optic DOES make a marked difference in my performance with a rifle, though, about a whole classification's difference from Expert to Master.
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Post by chiz1180 4/28/2022, 6:49 am

Lets look at some real world results, which target was shot with a dot which one with irons? Both targets were shot by me on different days, at different locations, and different guns.
Irons vs Dot For Accuracy - Page 2 Img_1210

Bonus points if you can tell me the conditions each target was shot, what ammo, short roll vs long roll, ect.
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Post by SingleActionAndrew 4/28/2022, 7:32 am

Not sure if that's a serious offer but if you're like me, the one on the right is the dot because it drew a circle around the X instead of hitting it Very Happy
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Post by dannyd93140 4/28/2022, 7:42 am

For old eyes the dot is great

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Post by chiz1180 4/29/2022, 7:05 am

SingleActionAndrew wrote:Not sure if that's a serious offer but if you're like me, the one on the right is the dot because it drew a circle around the X instead of hitting it Very Happy
If that were the case you are claiming irons to be more accurate if the desired value is an x. 

I wasn't totally serious, just trying to make the point that a lot of the things people worry themselves over are far less significant that people are making them out to be. Both dots and iron sights are capable of helping the shooter perform well. It is frustrating that the vast majority of shooters talk poorly about iron sights because "its more difficult" "old eyes" ect. when in reality the shooters who are at the top of the game can shoot both well. If you want to get good, don't limit yourself with negativity.
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Post by SingleActionAndrew 4/29/2022, 7:44 am

chiz1180 wrote:
SingleActionAndrew wrote:Not sure if that's a serious offer but if you're like me, the one on the right is the dot because it drew a circle around the X instead of hitting it Very Happy
If that were the case you are claiming irons to be more accurate if the desired value is an x. 

I'm only claiming my own experience! Not claiming any rules or trends greater than my own development. I'm still yet a shooter in the rough but yes that's been my experience, and I've spent considerable funds in the last year to go 100% irons (my 22 didn't have sights so Pardini SP22BE - Amazing irons!, new slide & bbl for Pardini GT45-II dedicated to irons, RRA 1911 NM Hardball 45) instead of all dots.

Edit: part of my frustration with the dot is my eyes. I've worked with my new ophthalmologist across 4 sessions on this, and I cannot despite correction see the lines in a B8 at 25 yards. I can't figure out how to focus on the dot and can't optically focus on the target.
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