Thursday, November 6, 2014

Info Bleg - Rapid Transition Sights

A couple of years ago, I did a short-lived experiment with a cheap set of "Rapid Transition Sights" from eBay on my AR.  Briefly, I bought a cheap imitation of the Dueck Defense Sights and I never got them to line up well enough to use.  A problem I've never had with iron sights that aren't offset 45 degrees.  (Yeah... could it be the $30 Chicom sights aren't as good as the $250 Dueck sights?  Ya think?) 

An email ad today got me thinking about them again.  I've got to say that I still like the idea, though, and was wondering if anyone who drops by here has experience with any of them. 

The Dueck Rapid transition sights.  I understand they're popular in 3-Gun world.  Any alternatives?  I see several and have no idea if any of them are good. 


  1. Troy has been in the blogoshphere lately. Quick Google search turned up several, the big names all look to be around $250 +/-

  2. What I have seen and had feedback reports from the real deal high speed low drag guys (who were the last unit I gun wrenched for before I retired) is that the iron sights were weighed in the balance and found wanting.

    The Insight MRDS - the standard mini - for the 45 degree offset (where wanted) fit the bill.

    Yep, quite a bit more expensive, but they worked and the irons didn't.

  3. Been looking at the new Surefire 45 degree offset sights, would like to try them. The Duecks and similar are popular in Heavy Metal 3-Gun (.308). I've got a 5.56 AR with a 2-7X normal eye relief scope (usually left on 5X, and zeroed for 225 yards, use the internal BDC stadia for out to 400) and a 45 degree Burris FastFire red dot (zeroed for 60 yards) for 3-gun, and the combo works quite well once you learn how to run it. I'm not content being "battery dependent" with the red dot, which is why I'm looking for irons to replace it.

    From what I've seen, placement of offset irons with a top-mounted scope requires some juggling of rail real estate and scope ring height to make it fit one's eyes, especially for those of us with presbyopia. I put the 45 degree red dot just in front of the rear scope mount (1" high QD rings), which works for a red dot, but I'd want the rear ghost ring closer to my eye, which means playing with scope position because 1" high rings are as high as I want to go. There's no noticeable eye focal changes (at least to me) shifting between scope and dot, but I anticipate some going between scope and front sight when I find what I want in offset irons, which means the transition will be slower.

    Nikon does have a new 2-8X EER (Scout) scope with BDC circles for stadia, I don't know if how much advantage it would offer mounted forward in combination with offset irons. I've got a rifle that needs a Scout-style scope, so I'll probably get one to try on the AR first, if I can find what I want in offset irons.

  4. For the battery averse, Trijicon makes one of their RMRs using only Tritium and fiber optics to light the reticle.

    To the EER idea, about 7 years ago I put a Leupold Scout scope on the top rail of a M5 handguard on an M16A2. The rifle was used on Fort Knox's Blair Shannon computerized .mil pop up range to qualify and the results for each shooter were considerably better. We were able to increase the average soldier's score by 10 to 15 percent.

    The closest target is 50 meters and the farthest is 300. No one had any problem getting on target and having plenty of time to shoot.

  5. I can't speak on the offset irons, but I absolutely love my offset Aimpoint Micro riding on a Larue quick detach. I was about heartbroken when I first picked up an ACOG, only to figure out that I am cross eye-dominant, and that as a result, the whole Bindon thing was a non-starter for me. After some thought, I decided to steal the micro from another rifle, put the two together and see how they worked. One word: Awesome. I don't know about a true 45 degree cant, but with the Larue, the red dot rides at about the one o'clock position, and the transitions between zoom to no zoom take zero time and allows me to maintain an unbroken cheekweld. The only thing I have run across as an annoyance is smudges on the ACOG glass from the tip of my nose (mostly due to it's short eye relief and how packed together it all became on top of my receiver).

    In summary, if you are into 3 gun, or want to have a tool capable of combat at various ranges that might transition rapidly, I'd say the price of admission is worth it.

    Just my $.02, but I hope that helps.

    Very respectfully,

  6. I put the bargain offsets on a .22 LR upper. I could not get a zero, a quick consultation with the internet revealed that the gas block height had to be matched to the offset sights. If I remember right, I changed the dummy gas block to a dummy rail height gas block. I got zero pretty easily.

    For a .22 LR upper with an economy scope, the imports were a good match.

    But even on a 5.56 upper with decent glass, I still cannot justify the price of the upper end offsets.

    I would have thought that some entrepreneur would have come out with a polymer/metal offset sight of good quality, and at the "right" price.

    John in Philly

  7. I've been looking at offset irons too. It appears as though the Surefire are the Dueck Defense. Troy makes a set for about the same price. Knight's makes a couple different sets for just a bit more money. That's a lot of cash for a set of backup irons.

  8. There's several good comments here. Thanks for the tips, everyone.

    The ones that caught my eye and prompted this were Troy Industries Offset Sights, but my previous attempt was early last year. AIM surplus had (important word) the Troy sights for $180.

    Although I've only used one once or twice in a class, a red dot sight on a mount that hung off the side and allowed me to keep the scope would be a good combination. Maybe I should be looking for 45 degree pieces of picatinny rail to mount one on.

  9. Warne, Yankee Hill, Daniels Defense and GG&G make these mounts.

    Brownells should list them and probably a few more

  10. SiG - here's the 45 degree offset mount I used for the FastFire - it's a Weaver Offset Rail Adaptor, $25 at amazon.

    I tried a couple, went with the Weaver because it sits very low over the rail and is concave, allowing for scope clearance. I started with the red dot at the back of the rail so I needed a mount that would fit under the rear scope bell, which is why I also went with 1" Ultra-High Warne QD rings.

    I don't use the BUIS on that rifle - there's no room at the rear of the rail - but they're on the gun, folded flat forward of the scope. If I needed them, remove the scope via the QD rings, push the release pin on the rear sight and install it at the back of the rail, flip both sights up. I've zeroed them at 200 yards, and tested moving them; I can keep the holes on a 8" paper plate at 200, which while not perfect, is better than no sights at all if the scope fails.

    I've noticed a number of scope mounts (and sights) for rails have locating bars .015-.035" narrower than the slots in a Picatinny rail, and need to be pushed firmly forward when being tightened to avoid movement from recoil. I've thought about shims, but haven't tried any yet.

  11. Thanks, Alien. The more I think of it, the more I like the idea of a mini red dot on something like that.

  12. SiG, you're welcome. You'll probably make a decision before then, but if not, I'll be at CFRPC for Ladies' Day in March, let me know and I can bring that rifle.