JCN Carry Gun test part 2: irons vs. RDS

Discussion in 'General Firearms Forum' started by -JCN-, Oct 20, 2020.

  1. P365XL RMSc

  2. G43x Romeo Zero

  3. P365 RMSc

  4. P365 iron sights (stock X-ray)

  5. G43x iron sights (agents)

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  1. -JCN-

    -JCN-

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    Part 1 is here: https://www.glocktalk.com/threads/jcn-carry-gun-test.1867678/#post-29772334

    From that poll, people were split between iron sight P365 and RDS P365XL

    So I thought I would test apples to apples. RDS on and off guns.

    Left to right: G43x, P365 (with XL grip), P365XL

    2E204C62-4A09-4C7A-9AB1-41F98447D9EC.jpeg

    Questions:
    Is a dot more important than what type of gun?

    How do irons versus dots do with transitions (per @Fatboy2001 request)?

    Would the type of iron sight matter?
    D8A0720F-54EB-448F-9AFC-D32CE8105DD8.jpeg

    Methodology:
    Last test was concealed draws with vertical small transitions. But type of holster and retention matters and I wanted this to be as apples to apples as possible.

    I did an unloaded start with back turned to two targets for the first string. On buzzer, two to first target and then transition and one on the second target. Par beep was 2.5s and that’s usually when I was almost triggering the third shot. Was probably ~3 seconds total for each string.

    Each gun was shot 3 strings. I started with my “best RDS gun” to avoid practice bias and left the irons for last.

    The targets were 4-5y away from me and 5 yards from each other. The head shots are actually quite small with the right hand target being just under 2” wide. The left hand target head was about the size of a 4x6” card.

    I picked pictures as targets to add realism for a potential self defense scenario and to avoid the high contrast of white targets that might improve iron sight resolution.

    Self defense power ammo, as usual for these tests.

    Results:
    Please watch the videos to understand the course of fire:






    F46CB8DB-EC93-4220-898F-00C8D9C6927B.jpeg
    4751A228-28BC-4AC7-8CD8-DE96F05F0FAC.jpeg

    Glock was no slouch! I was impressed by it. 3CAB8AB6-A12C-4733-86E4-1EDC32FECBD5.jpeg

    Impressions:
    1. I was a lot more confident in my shot placement with red dots for the same time constraint.
    2. The type of red dot didn’t matter.
    3. The type of gun the red dot was mounted on didn’t seem to matter much.
    4. The Sig OEM irons were the worst out of all the permutations tested. I was able to pick up the orange in the U-notch quicker on the Glock.
    Conclusions:
    • The P365, P365XL and the G43x are all extremely capable self defense carry guns.
    • For me, even “within 5 yards” I was able to be pretty accurate at reasonable speed but I feel like better with red dots than irons.
    Summary thoughts:
    I am going to carry a P365 with a red dot from now on. I was carrying irons before.

    If I really didn’t want to go with an optic, I would definitely change the sights to something narrower in front on the Sig.

    @DaleGribble and @boilergonzo I had someone ask me: “Why do you use snow tires? You’re a good driver. You don’t need them.”

    It’s kind of the same philosophy. I raced cars on dirt, snow, ice... etc... which just makes me appreciate good equipment all the more.

    If I can get superior grip and safety in the Winter with the minor hassle of swapping wheels twice a year, that’s worth it to me.

    Same thing here. Turns out I could improve my performance on my carry equipment with just a change of the iron sights or adding an ounce with a lightweight red dot.

    That’s the fun for me. For sure it could go to the extreme and I could carry a 45oz competition gun as a carry gun... but that falls outside of what I’m willing to do comfort wise.

    I think any of these guns are good choices, but some are “gooder” than others for me without much of a down side.

    Hit the “like” if you like or appreciate the thought that goes into these tests! Would love and appreciate discussion and constructive comments!
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2020
  2. pgg00

    pgg00

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    You are teasing me again :fist:
     

  3. Fatboy2001

    Fatboy2001

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    thumbs up.jpg
     
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  4. Sig Fever

    Sig Fever 98.SiG and Rising!

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    I see that you changed your XL to a curved trigger, do you not like the straight trigger?

    ** Never mind, I read your answer in Test 1. **
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2020
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  5. JPARANEE

    JPARANEE

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    Tuned in

    as someone who just transitioned over to handguns on red dots

    I know it slowed me up at first a tad but my accuracy was much greater

    I’m now a few thousand rounds into it a believer

    good stuff
     
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  6. pgg00

    pgg00

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    I could see the difference with the red dot.
     
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  7. 10or45

    10or45 NRA Benefactor Life Member

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    RDS groups are tighter.
    Now you got me researching RDS's. :cowboy:
     
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  8. JPARANEE

    JPARANEE

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    I can’t agree more with your analogies

    last year I went to a Pirelli Sottozero on an all wheel drive performance car and I could not believe what a true winter tire can do and that goes for what a true high performance summer tire can do compared to an all season

    its just one of those things ya don’t know till ya know

    as a life long firearms enthusiast and hunter I am someone who has carried his whole life

    I was always confident of my shooting with iron sights but at 52 and failing eyes I wondered how I was still very proficient with a red dot sighted AR even with out glasses

    I began about 6 months ago trying out dots on one of my beloved revolvers a TRR8

    It took me time to build muscle memory on finding the dot but I immediately noticed once found I was faster on target transition and my groups were smaller with glasses or without

    next I moved to a Glock platform in a 34 and built some more muscle memory

    I than went to a 19 with a dot as a carry piece once I felt confident

    I’ve learnt to truly appreciate a single plane sighting system and I’m sold on them

    Just like 15 years ago red dots were scoffed at on AR’s and now they are the norm dots will take over the handgun world

    here is a video of me learning to shoot a red dot on various handguns this is not to show anything than the path I took and the work I’ve put in to acquire the dot

    it’s been fun and I’m a red dot fan .... now I gotta put one on a carry revolver for gentler times :)

     
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  9. 10or45

    10or45 NRA Benefactor Life Member

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    This sums it up for me. I can see them being designed into pistols in the future.
     
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  10. boilergonzo

    boilergonzo

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    Great review. I like your thought process and conclusions.

    If you truly want constructive observations, I will provide a few, but this is not meant to be a negative. Your post was great.

    In science (and statistics), there is more observational power and confidence with higher numbers of data points. While three is often cited as a bare bones minimum, more is always better. It was snowy, and perhaps a snowflake, gust of wind, or a bit of ice or rock under your feet impacted one or the other. All it takes is one flyer, and that gun looks comparatively bad, even if it was a fluke. They were all fairly close in terms of performance (you did kill the girl once, but who is keeping score, right?). It would be interesting to see the very same test repeated on a different day to see if the findings settle into the previously observed pattern, or if they diverge. It truly could go either way. We are not seeking a p value of .0005, obviously!

    It may also make a difference in the order you shoot the guns (eyes/brain may do better going from irons to red dots, etc.). Your eyes/brain may feel it is a difficult adjustment going from perceived easy to hard, or vice versa. Or it may not matter at all. I don't know. Regardless, trying things out again with more data points (in a different firearm order) may reveal changes, or it may confirm prior performance. I am not trying to add work to your schedule, but if you did "JCN Carry Gun Part 2a" I would read it! :cheers:

    As for your analogy, I totally accept your logic. Allow me to extend the metaphor:

    Like you, I use snow tires (Blizzak) because they do provide an amazing advantage. So I not only understand your analogy, but I embrace and practice the very same logic!

    I don't know what car you drive. Let's say you have a Mercedes E Series (4-Matic all-wheel drive, with new snow tires) or an AMG -63 or a Porsche Carrera 4s. It checks all your daily drive boxes, and is great fun in the snow (with snow tires!!!), and fun in the summer (soft performance tires). The GT3 only gets summer driving, of course, and the Land Cruiser is the family hauler... Substitute in Toyota Camry, Lexus 300, Hyundai Genesis, F-150, or Toyota Sienna minivan with AWD, if you wish!

    My only point was that if nieces and nephews came to visit, just because the Mercedes Sprinter (in your video!) has a high center of gravity and handles more like a very drunk rhinoceros than an agile cheetah, it still could be the perfect solution for the daily job at hand. It still benefits from your skills driving, and would be a safe option. It just wouldn't stack up on a race track. On a day when you are wearing your thong and hot pink running shorts with a tank top... if you can't hide the red dot on a larger gun, carrying the smallest option (or even a KelTec P3AT!) may be a reasonable compromise. Having said that, I would probably not encourage you to wear the attire cited! But the choices are all yours!

    Your prior test where I commented about size and comfort also had much larger guns competing. These were all far more similar in size which makes the playing field more level (and less need to flex from small to large... you are just adding optics and a bit of a grip).

    I don't know where you live, but it clearly snows (and it is a bit early for snow in most states in the country!). I know that I can comfortably carry a larger gun if I know I have a bulky jacket. In the summer, I wear shorts and prefer a smaller gun. It is fun to watch you test what works. Regardless of what works best, your skills would allow you to compromise a bit if you wanted to (which you may not!).

    Thanks for the good read and info!!!
     
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  11. -JCN-

    -JCN-

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    I appreciate your input and advice! You are thoughtful and practical which resonates well.

    I have been known to pocket carry a Bodyguard 380 or NAA Pug golfing or a G32 with red dot to the mall.

    But for 99% of “daily driver” duty, the P365 / G43x (with S15 mag) size has been a great all around vehicle. 5 years ago I was carrying a 7 shot Kimber Micro 9 or a G26.

    I feel like I can carry and shoot something in that weight class well enough that I don’t feel like I’m too compromised.

    Anything smaller and I feel like I am meaningfully reducing my options. I’ve shot P32s in GT challenges along with LCPs of various flavors and I feel like draw, sights and follow up shot speed all take quite a hit compared to something just a little larger (like the P365).

    Adding a dot to a 365 really doesn’t add weight or much bulk as the optic rises above the belt line and I carry appendix. So while the dot may not be superior, it seems non-inferior and doesn’t have much down side.

    But heck, I might carry the G43x more now that it has the Shield Arms 15 round magazine! :)
     
  12. Dr_fast

    Dr_fast

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    Have you ever tested these red dot sights versus a good old-fashioned laser.
    I would think that the advantage of being able to shoot from the hip so to speak, and watch the dot all the way up would make you quicker than having to look through the window.
    Also, in close combat, you don’t have to raise the gun up with the bad guy can grab it.

    The primary disadvantage would be that the laser is always going to be off somewhat and not as accurate as the dot sight. I happen to be a laser fan, and have all of mine set parallel to the barrel. That way I know how far off they are and can account myself. According to Crimson Trace, a Glock 26 set parallel to the barrel is 1.39 inches low compared to a point of impact. I think that’s a small price to pay for the advantages of enclose combat, and quicker target acquisition.
    Lasers are also phenomenal for Dry Fire practice. I have trained myself to instinctively point within a few inches without even looking instinctively pretty much every time.

    What are your thoughts on that?
     
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  13. boilergonzo

    boilergonzo

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    Valid points, and makes perfect sense.

    The only quibble I have is when you are referring to the sights on LCP... I have the poor, older sibling, the P3AT, but have handled the LCP. The P3AT doesn't HAVE real sights (just little nipple bumps), and the LCP is marginally better (I might give them credit for being 1/2 sights!). I agree. The SIG365 (and others you are looking at) actually have real sights, real triggers, and despite being quite small they deliver on the characteristics we come to expect from a typical firearm.

    DrFast posed an interesting question around lasers. I am curious how that aligns with your thoughts and needs. I have lasers on some guns, but haven't put dots or lasers on my smallest guns (I have a 340PD J-frame with a CrimsonTrace laser, that is the smallest).
     
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  14. -JCN-

    -JCN-

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    I think you gentlemen might have come up with my next test! :cheers:

    I have my impressions of lasers, but I haven’t tested.

    Here they are:
    I have had them on NAA Minis and on Kimber Micro 9s. I had one of the lasermax guide rod lasers on a G26. Green lasers with a Viridian light / laser combo. Taurus Curve, 380 Bodyguard.
    1. I have had issues with Crimson Trace lasers drifting zero to the point where I don’t trust them very much.
    2. They don’t seem bright enough in sunlight
    3. If someone is on top of me and I’m point shooting I don’t want ANYTHING that slows me down because it’s the fastest of the fast. So that’s going to be the question, do you need a laser during the times when it would be a benefit over a dot?
    @Dr_fast I practice point shooting with a laser bullet and airsoft. The advantage of those methods being that they correlate with trigger press and can resolve if you would have actually hit the target while moving rather than sweeping with a laser so IMHO it might be even better of a practice option.

    I’ll have to think of a test for this. I think I prefer dots to lasers due to technical limits of current lasers, but I do have a big super bright shotgun laser that I would totally use if it was in a carryable package.

    But battery life and effective intensity also makes me favor RDS over lasers.

    So I guess the tests could be:
    Laser versus RDS at medium range.
    Laser versus nothing point shooting.

    Also note that when I point shoot RDS guns, I don’t actually look through the window. I just look at the general shape of the gun if the target is close enough.

    One time I was doing the 2 reload 2 drill with my competition gun at speed and it took me a few magazines before I even realized the dot was off....

    Here is the candidate gun for the next test...

    F767F333-D3AA-4026-A372-AE87863CB538.jpeg

    Red dot, green laser and a gun that I point shoot decently.
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2020
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  15. Sig Fever

    Sig Fever 98.SiG and Rising!

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    Which do you think shoots better, P365 or G43X?
     
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  16. boilergonzo

    boilergonzo

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    A few thoughts...

    Given the desire for lasers and optics, I am perpetually amazed that gun manufacturers don't embed wires/switches to enable a guide-rod-like factory laser (laser activates via engineered/planned switches in the frame, no a clunky, third party solution). It seems like a no-brainer!

    Green lasers are awfully easy to pick up! It is amazing how bright a Class IIIa (5mw or less) 532nm green laser is compared to red. I don't know the power of your Viridian (don't own one), but the TLR-2HL G is pretty bright!

    I have a BodyGuard with the laser. It is abysmal. I have the older version with the horrid button to activate. Between a bad design on the button and a feeble laser, it is a nuisance, not a benefit. When I bought the BG, it wasn't available sans laser. If I were to buy again, I would certainly opt for the non-laser version!

    You just admitted you had a Taurus Curve. :eek:
     
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  17. Dr_fast

    Dr_fast

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    All very good points. I say I must agree. Seems like everything has some downside.

    And I didn’t mention, that I also use a laser bullet and turn the laser off for point practice as well.

    I guess I also forgot to mention that, I’ve already decided that an outdoor situation , During daylight hours I’ve got to use the iron sites. It’s way too easy to lose your laser 50 yards off the target on some wall that you can’t see when you’re outside in the daylight. So this is a low light, no light, or indoor option only. (lasers for me)

    thank you so much for deciding to take this up! It will be a very interesting test.

    it would also be interesting to look at first shots, versus follow up shots. I’m thinking first shot might be a little quicker but follow up may not be any different at all. And I love your idea of point shooting without a laser versus with it. I just don’t think there’s going to be any comparison there. (in other words, shooting from the hip with a laser versus without.) i’m really excited to see what you come up with! I am the kind of guy who would even consider doing this myself, but I have no optics on any of my weapons.
     
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  18. DaleGribble

    DaleGribble Come on man!!

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    In the other thread, I wasn't talking about the dot, we already know that juice is worth the squeeze, I was referring to the P365 vs the CZ and the compromises in carrying one or the other.

    I'm already carrying a P365 SAS in the pocket and I'm debating on either a P365 XL and a dot or a regular P365 and a dot, for AIWB to go along with the SAS.
     
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  19. pgg00

    pgg00

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    I have this set up on a 23

    20140317_185321_zpsxjilk0yj.jpg
     
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  20. Walk Soft

    Walk Soft

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    I’ve been carrying a stock 365XL for about a year. I recently bought my first RDS for a S&W Victory and I like it. I haven’t tried it from a draw or tried to acquire it quickly yet. It looks like I am going to have to try it out on my XL.
     
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