Help on co-witness optics
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  1. #1
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    Help on co-witness optics

    So I love shooting my MP-15 on iron sights and am getting tight groupings at 25 yards. Truth is I am now 53 and can hardly see the x and am relying on just knowing where it is supposed to be. Question is, is there a 2x or 3x red dot or other that can co-witness from say 25 to 125 yards or do slightly older folks just shoot scopes?

    Thanks folks ...
    Brit in Texas
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    When my vision went to crap with the added bonus of an astigmatism, (yes, I'm "slightly older" now) I switched to low power prism optics for short range work. I personally like what Primary Arms offers; reasonably prices, decent features and very workable.

    I use a 1x Cyclops on my rimfire steel challenge rifle and a 3x Prism on my AR. I just added a PA 1-6x with a 22lr specific reticle on my Tippmann M4-22 Elite and have been very happy with all of them so far.

    So long story short, due to my degraded vision I ditched the irons and replaced them with optics.
    Last edited by cjt50; 02-22-2020 at 02:30 AM.
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    Eotech makes some mighty nice stuff and have power magnifying options for most of their holographic sites. The 512 resides on many of my firearms and has never let me down.
    Digsy66 likes this.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjt50 View Post
    When my vision went to crap with the added bonus of an astigmatism, (yes, I'm "slightly older" now) I switched to low power prism optics for short range work. I personally like what Primary Arms offers; reasonably prices, decent features and very workable.

    I use a 1x Cyclops on my rimfire steel challenge rifle and a 3x Prism on my AR. I just added a PA 1-6x with a 22lr specific reticle on my Tippmann M4-22 Elite and have been very happy with all of them so far.

    So long story short, due to my degraded vision I ditched the irons and replaced them with optics.
    +1
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  6. #5
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    I have a Lucid HD7 on my Stag Model 1 and with its integral mount , it has a good lower one third co-witness. I can use either the dot or iron sights with no problem.
    Digsy66 likes this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Digsy66 View Post
    So I love shooting my MP-15 on iron sights and am getting tight groupings at 25 yards. Truth is I am now 53 and can hardly see the x and am relying on just knowing where it is supposed to be. Question is, is there a 2x or 3x red dot or other that can co-witness from say 25 to 125 yards or do slightly older folks just shoot scopes?

    Thanks folks ...
    Magnified optics, 2x or 3x, will not co-witness with irons. The front sight will be a blur at 2x. At 3x the front sight will begin to disappear. At 4x it will not be visible.

    There are many LPVO (low power variable optics) that advertise 1-4x or 1-6x but the 1x isn't a true 1x. The A2 front sight will be fuzzy and remain in the sight picture.

    To co-witness requires a 1x reflex or holographic like the EOTech.

    There are 3x 'magnifiers' that work in conjunction with the above 1x sights. They are mounted to flip to the side out of the way when the shooter wants 1x and/or co-witness. However, they are heavy and clumsy.

    A lot of guys have issue with the A2 front sight that remains a fuzzy mess in their sight picture at low power magnification. They often replace the front sight with just a gas block or with a gas block/folding sight.

    With an A2 in place and for range shooting, you might consider just going with a conventional 3-9x. Crank up the magnification above 4X and enjoy. Or go with LPVO 1-6x in a style like I have on one of my AR platform rimfire rifles.

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    Last edited by ChattanoogaPhil; 02-22-2020 at 07:34 AM.
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    There are a number of ways to deal with problems as your eyesight deteriorates. It's not necessarily resolved by adding optics to a rifle.

    I also have had the slow degeneration of my eyesight related to aging. Other than a growing cataract (which will eventually have to be addresses) this has been mainly affecting my close in vision (reading, etc) with some difficulty focusing on distance.

    My eye doctor discovered a problem called Fuchs Dystopia that affects the cornea; a problem that can be addressed with a simple ointment that draws moisture from the eye.

    But these are my issues. Do you know exactly what has been happening with your vision?

    In my case, I was able to address my needs for shooting with a set of glasses that were made expressly for use at the range. They are regular safety glasses with shatterproof lenses.

    The lens for my dominant eye is a single vision lens and is set with focus at the plane of the end of my outstretched hand. This roughly matches the position of the front sight of a handgun, and approximates that of the front sight of a rifle when shouldered. The other lens is a progressive lens which allows me to shift sharp focus between close up objects and distant objects like the target.

    Remember that when you shoot, the front sight should be in sharp focus. Distant objects like the target will normally be fuzzy - especially in dim light.

    The use of an optical sight like a scope can help basically bring the sight picture into a small short focal plane created by the optic. To see this you need glasses that will correct for close up objects which is essentially the focal plane the scope is creating. For red dot sights, focus is basically the same as with iron sights.

    You can get red dot optics and mount them to co-witness with existing sights on your AR-15 platform. Remember that inexpensive sights rarely can stand up to the recoil impulse over time (which is why the better optics cost more). An inexpensive red-dot may survive long term use on a .22LR rifle, but not on a full power .223 / 5.56mm platform.

    I recently bought an Aimpoint PRO (Patrol Ready Optic) which came with a co-witness sight base and installed neatly with the folding sights I have on the rifle. It's a 1x (non-magnification) optic with a 2 moa dot. A 3x magnifier can be added, but it hangs over the rear folded sight on my rifle.

    I've got a very old EOTech that has been a good performing red-dot sight. A couple of Vortex models are also good in co-witness. I have a SPARC-AR and Strike-Fire and both have held up well.

    So, my advice is to try a set of glasses first, then consider some optics.
    SidecarFlip and Digsy66 like this.
    Cheers! Marc


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    Quote Originally Posted by mrerick View Post
    There are a number of ways to deal with problems as your eyesight deteriorates. It's not necessarily resolved by adding optics to a rifle.

    I also have had the slow degeneration of my eyesight related to aging. Other than a growing cataract (which will eventually have to be addresses) this has been mainly affecting my close in vision (reading, etc) with some difficulty focusing on distance.

    My eye doctor discovered a problem called Fuchs Dystopia that affects the cornea; a problem that can be addressed with a simple ointment that draws moisture from the eye.

    But these are my issues. Do you know exactly what has been happening with your vision?

    In my case, I was able to address my needs for shooting with a set of glasses that were made expressly for use at the range. They are regular safety glasses with shatterproof lenses.

    The lens for my dominant eye is a single vision lens and is set with focus at the plane of the end of my outstretched hand. This roughly matches the position of the front sight of a handgun, and approximates that of the front sight of a rifle when shouldered. The other lens is a progressive lens which allows me to shift sharp focus between close up objects and distant objects like the target.

    Remember that when you shoot, the front sight should be in sharp focus. Distant objects like the target will normally be fuzzy - especially in dim light.

    The use of an optical sight like a scope can help basically bring the sight picture into a small short focal plane created by the optic. To see this you need glasses that will correct for close up objects which is essentially the focal plane the scope is creating. For red dot sights, focus is basically the same as with iron sights.

    You can get red dot optics and mount them to co-witness with existing sights on your AR-15 platform. Remember that inexpensive sights rarely can stand up to the recoil impulse over time (which is why the better optics cost more). An inexpensive red-dot may survive long term use on a .22LR rifle, but not on a full power .223 / 5.56mm platform.

    I recently bought an Aimpoint PRO (Patrol Ready Optic) which came with a co-witness sight base and installed neatly with the folding sights I have on the rifle. It's a 1x (non-magnification) optic with a 2 moa dot. A 3x magnifier can be added, but it hangs over the rear folded sight on my rifle.

    I've got a very old EOTech that has been a good performing red-dot sight. A couple of Vortex models are also good in co-witness. I have a SPARC-AR and Strike-Fire and both have held up well.

    So, my advice is to try a set of glasses first, then consider some optics.
    +1 or be like me and get your lenses replaced. I have 20-20 and 20-25 now. Of course it wasn't cheap, like 10 grand an eye.....
    Digsy66 likes this.
    Daryl......

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    Welcome to the forum!

    My husband is now 56, he prefers scopes, but with his eyesight....
    Digsy66 likes this.
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  11. #10
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    Thanks Mark .. I use contacts to correct my long vision and that messes up my short vision in return. I do have some bi-focal safety glasses at work which I will try. I guess if I can’t see the x at the back of the range then I guess I should go get my prescription checked as well!
    Brit in Texas
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