Two Options for Iron Sights
Optics in firearms can offer you different benefits such as extended range, low-light visibility and also on the ease of target acquisition. Even the military today now switched to optics to use for combat situations.
It is really important to remember that such high tech replacements for dependable old iron sights can be disabled on a certain way. If there’s no proper backup, damaged optics could make the weapon useless for an accurate shooting.
A BUIS or Back Up Iron Sight can actually give you critical redundancy in setting up your AR. It could add weight, but could give you the ability in getting targets even after the primary sight goes down. What you will learn below are some things to consider in the selection for a backup iron sight.
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Iron sights are available in various configurations based with the height of the sights. The basic to this is that you should have the rear and front sight to have the same height if you want to really hit the target.
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Where this comes into important is to where you mount the front sight. Most backup iron sights are available in 2 options which are the gas block height and same-plane height.
In a gas block BUIS configuration, the front sight post is about 1/4 ” higher than the rear sight aperture so that it could make up for the case to where the front sight is mounted 1/4 ” lower than its upper receiver where the rear sight is mounted. It’s essential to remember that the gas block sights are only for the purpose of mounting on a gas block that’s usually lower than the upper receiver. Some of the gas blocks have the same height with that of the receiver to where you want the same-plane sight is.
The same-plane sights are made so that the front sight post is on the same height as the rear aperture when the sights are being put on a flat surface. This means that for these sights, the front sight should be mounted somewhere at the same height as its upper receiver. Typically, people are going to mount the front sight on a free float handguard with a rail present on top.
Your overall AR-15 setup will be the one to help you determine if you need the folding or fixed BUIS. The fixed iron sights comes with the advantage of having no moving parts, which actually makes this nearly indestructible. It is also always ready where there’s no need for you to mess with it.
When you are however not using them as the main targeting system, the fixed sights would be the best choice, but for backup purposes, it’s the folding type that’s best.