Spike Camp

Red Dot sights

Red Dot sights
« on: March 06, 2018, 12:14:37 PM »
I quickly figured out that I want a red dot sight for my new AR, but there are a lot out there to pick from. Given how much stuff I've bought lately, I really need to go low budget (under 200 bucks) for now. Saw the Vortex Strikeforce II online at Academy.com for $180 and keep leaning towards it, but it has a 4moa dot, which is pretty big. Holosun has their HS403A, which I think is only around $140. I tried a SIG Romeo last weekend on my friend's AR and it was OK. If anybody has opinions on these or anything on the market, please feel free to throw it out there.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2018, 12:28:09 PM by texweatherby »
Some like cologne, I like the smell of gunpowder.

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #1 on: March 06, 2018, 12:33:57 PM »
I prefer the smallest dot I can afford.  4moa will blot out an elephant at 300 yds.  ;D  2moa is about as large as I want to go. Look at the batteries they use, also. AA batteries are cheap and easy to find, some others are not. 

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #2 on: March 06, 2018, 12:47:42 PM »
I doubt this rifle will be used much beyond 100 yards, but yeah, that 4moa dot size seems huge and I'm not sure why Vortex has it that way, as they make a good product. I have seen some much more expensive (like 800 bucks) that have 4, even 6.5moa dots, which doesn't make too much sense to me. I know a bigger dot supposedly provides faster aim at closer distances, but 4moa for general use seems huge. I have not shot with one that big though. I have heard that some that use 4moa dots sight in with point of impact at the top of the dot, rather than centered. They then set the point of aim on the target directly on top of the dot so it's not covered up. Still doesn't sound like precision though.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2018, 01:01:31 PM by texweatherby »
Some like cologne, I like the smell of gunpowder.

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2018, 01:18:44 PM »
I like the 6moa circle with a 1moa dot in my E O Tech, but 3 times your price point. I look around and see what's available.  :)

PARA45

  • *****
  • 3569
    • View Profile
Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2018, 01:26:44 PM »
Tex, if you could be patient, look into Midway & MidSouth Shooter Supplies, I've seen the Vortex Strike Force for about $50 cheaper.  I have the first Vortex Strike Force that came out, and I also have their newer ones.  I also have several different models of EoTechs.  These optics are not designed for hunting 4 legged animals.  I've used both optics in several carbine classes I've taken, and several carbine shooting matches, without any issues.  Obviously the EoTech is a much better product, and I personally like the circle around the dot.  However, you will pay three times as much on the cheap side.  As bad stated, batteries are an issue.  EoTech eat batteries, even if they are turned off.   The Strike Force has two color dot, and for what I used them, they served the purpose within the budget I had at that time.  Neither one of the Vortex has given me any problem.  Also, Vortex has a life time warranty, so no issues there.  Both of these red dots come with their own mounts, so you don't have to spend money on that.

As fun as the red dots are, another option to explore is to get a 1-4x power scope.  Vortex, Nikon and Bushnell I think have a few.  The beauty about those scope is that you can dial them down to 1 power, and shoot with both eyes open.

I hope this helps you make a decision.  BTW, did you get the mags from DSG?     

PARA45

  • *****
  • 3569
    • View Profile
Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #5 on: March 06, 2018, 01:28:48 PM »
I doubt this rifle will be used much beyond 100 yards, but yeah, that 4moa dot size seems huge and I'm not sure why Vortex has it that way, as they make a good product. I have seen some much more expensive (like 800 bucks) that have 4, even 6.5moa dots, which doesn't make too much sense to me. I know a bigger dot supposedly provides faster aim at closer distances, but 4moa for general use seems huge. I have not shot with one that big though. I have heard that some that use 4moa dots sight in with point of impact at the top of the dot, rather than centered. They then set the point of aim on the target directly on top of the dot so it's not covered up. Still doesn't sound like precision though.

Remember that these red dots were designed for CQB, not for long range usage. 

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2018, 02:14:01 PM »
The holographic sights are next to worthless in low or no light conditions.  All you can see is the dot, even at the lowest settings with $600 E O Tech's! I put  3-9X40 Redfield scope on my first RRA AR-15 clone in Warne rings. I do believe the rings were the most expensive part.  That rifle is way sub moa with cheap 55gr surplus ammo.  BUT, it is a +$1K rifle!  My original idea with a AR-15 clone was to CMA when the poop hit the fan. 12 ga buckshot is not a "surgical" weapon and I did not want to hit my GSD as he bit the bad guy's crotch off. BTW, I agree the E O Tech's eat batteries, even when "OFF". I keep mine out of the sight. 

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2018, 02:31:24 PM »
Thanks fellers. I won't likely hunt with this rifle, so yes, not looking for long range precision - It's mainly to have fun with and also a CMA weapon if ever a SHTF situation of roving gangs of thugs and no electricity (like what went down in New Orleans after that hurricane). Maybe the 4moa dot could suffice for those uses. I see Vortex just came out with a crossfire red dot with I believe a 2moa dot - compact and even cheaper than the Strikeforce II. BTW, Oscar, I got Magpul 30 round mags from Academy at 13 bucks.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2018, 02:40:52 PM by texweatherby »
Some like cologne, I like the smell of gunpowder.

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #8 on: March 06, 2018, 02:59:58 PM »
I'm not a fan of hunting with .223/5.56 myself, even if any center fire is legal here.  My grandson's issue weapon has a Trijicon sight. Top notch on my tax dollar. LOL!

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #9 on: March 06, 2018, 03:59:38 PM »
I like the 6moa circle with a 1moa dot in my E O Tech, but 3 times your price point. I look around and see what's available.  :)

We had Eotechs on our ARs at work and took them off because of the bulletin we got from them about them suffering from thermal drift at extreme temperatures.  Obviously we don't have to worry about the cold end but the hot end is where our concern came from.  The reason we were concerned is our rifles sit in our patrol cars and during the summer the temps inside can get well over 100 degrees pretty easily on a warm day with the windows up.  On my AR I have a Trijicon Reflex which has a 4 MOA dot.  Other guys have the Leupold VX Patrol, which is really nice because it has cros hairs that light up but is beyond your price range.  Aimpoint makes some nice optics also but they can get expensive pretty quick.  My advice is to go with a scope with crosshairs if you're going to hunt with it out to 100 yards.  If you're going to shoot out to 50 yards I wouldn't worry much about the 4 MOA dot.
Nothing is better than a Weatherby, big bore magnum, or a Colt.

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #10 on: March 06, 2018, 04:08:56 PM »
Have had an Aimpoint Pro Patrol for a few years and very pleased.  Very accurate and battery(s) last a long time! 
Gunshows are a good window shopping source, if you haven't already. Vortexs caught my eye there, higher quality Chinese copies.
Good luck.

dubyam

  • *****
  • 4804
    • View Profile
Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #11 on: March 06, 2018, 04:18:46 PM »
I have a Vortex SPARC II on my AR. It has a 2MOA dot, and it's adjustable enough that in a dimly lit room/hallway, I could shoot at least a first shot with clarity. Muzzle flash might or might not ruin things post shot 1. A similar 2MOA dot option is the SPARC AR.

Check with a seller named optics*laser on eBay and offer him $150 for either of these units. That's what I paid, brand new, and I checked with Vortex who confirmed mine is a legit unit and has full warranty coverage. I don't have any interest in the seller, but he did me right so I recommend him.
I believe this is a practical world, and in it I can count only on what I can earn.  Therefore I believe in work, hard work. - The Auburn Creed
The older I get, the less stock I place in what men say, and the more I place in what men do. - Andrew Carnegie

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #12 on: March 06, 2018, 06:29:31 PM »
Thanks guys. Dub, thanks for the tip. I'm thinking one of the Vortex's may be the best choice on a low budget.
Some like cologne, I like the smell of gunpowder.

zonie

  • *****
  • 6842
    • View Profile
Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #13 on: March 06, 2018, 07:16:01 PM »
These red dots have came a long way since they came out.  I use them all the time on handguns and shotguns where a larger dot size is more important for extra fast shooting.  I learned a long time ago to shoot to the center of the dot for longer range more precision shot's,  this may sound like of course you shoot to the center of the dot,  wrong answer not when you are shooting fast as in competition OR very tight closer in ranges and vegetations.  Guy's are going to shoot fast with the notion all hits will be inside the dot at what ever range they may be shooting i.e.  4 minute dot at 200 yds is 8 moa which cover a lot of an animal.  It's still within most kill areas such as deer and such regardless of where the bullet impacts within that 8 moa circle.  This is where shoot to center of the dot makes sense e.g. when sighting in with a dot  take care to center the bullet impact in the dead center of the dot,  now you will lose a certain amount of precision when the bullet drops at much longer ranges and the dot grows to unacceptable sizes.  Long time ago you could get 1 moa dots for rifles  up to around 10 moa for ultra fast handgun  comp shooting.   My own opinion 4 moa is pretty large even for handguns where as 2 moa or even a conventional rifle scope with a lighted dot or reticle with their finer crosshairs and dots may be a better option for hunting.  Multi color reticles are an advantage greens for low light and reds for bright daylight is the accepted norm for dot colors.  I use both and can say at least with my eye's the green dot/reticles really stand out in early morning and evening.   Reds I have to jack up dot and reticle intensity quite a bit during bright sunny days, and  then you walk around all day with the reticle on.  Parallax can be an issue with any of these type systems just to be aware of it,  mount your rifle and shoot  the same way each time / every time and this will lessen any parallax issues.  The Europeans from my understanding have been way ahead of us using red dots for hunting and their scopes first focal plane large objective lens to gather light  & big reticles while hunting in dark timber at times.  This is not a bad thing,   coastal areas super thick timber Aim Points and other red dots make a lot of since for fast accurate closer range hunting.  I'd look at the Vortex and I'd also look at the inexpensive Bushnell trophy red dot with multi reticle dot and crosshair systems.  Adco makes an inexpensive little unit, can't say how quality is nowdays,  back when I bought the Mirage version they were pretty good quality in fact I still have one on a race gun and ain't broke it yet, but it's no Aimpoint comp either.  If you get a chance look at how clear and round the dot is when viewing on different power settings I think you will find they tend to not be as round as one would think until you get up in price.   Look at how bad the  Parallax is at different ranges might surprise you.  1x power rating is awfully small when you might extend the range past a hundred yds or so,  they might be great for some one with 20/20 vision and terrible for someone else.  I almost think a low powered variable power rifle scope  with a lighted reticle might not be a better way to go on a rifle capable of shooting much longer ranges,  one of the reasons you are seeing more little micro red dot sights canted off at angle on rings with picatinny slots while a longer range scope type sits in the main rings for longer ranges on AR platforms,  just food for thought. 
« Last Edit: March 06, 2018, 07:26:58 PM by zonie »

Re: Red Dot sights
« Reply #14 on: March 06, 2018, 09:37:52 PM »
use to hunt whitetails with red dots and slug guns,

made the transition to a scope, 1-4x, and 3-9x and never looked back!

I'd take a 1x scope over a red dot any day, and you can get a red dot and 1-4x scope in one.

good luck, but not a fan of red dots.