Author Topic: A red dot for my AK  (Read 4980 times)

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Charles1951

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A red dot for my AK
« on: April 27, 2013, 05:52:02 PM »
With the ammo shortage I have had to reconsider what I will shoot at the IDPA carbine matches. I prefer my AR-15 but ammo for my WASR-10 (AK-47 variant) seems to be more available. I considered adding a red dot sight to this rifle over a year ago but then I was having so much fun with the AR that I set that idea aside. Some may remember that discussion:

http://guntoters.com/index.php/topic,818.0.html

Some of the thoughts I had then are still valid but I decided to go with a TruGlo offered at MidwayUSA: http://www.midwayusa.com/product/385470/truglo-red-dot-sight-40mm-tube-1x-5-moa-dot-with-integral-weaver-style-base-matte I have mounted it in the forward "scout" position on top of my Tapco Intrafuse Quad Rail Handguard. The 40mm tube gives me as much field of view as I can get. The downside of that is that the device is a little larger than others would be.

I had a chance to get it zeroed in yesterday and plan to use the setup next Saturday at an IDPA carbine match. My initial thoughts and opinion on this sight is that it will suit my use which is sport and amateur competition, in other words just for fun.

I will not be able to get a true co-witness with this sight but I don't think there are any red dots that allow that with AK style iron sights. On the other hand, I will be able to use the iron sights or the red dot at any time. In fact, I used the iron sights to sight in the red dot by just setting the red dot to the same point of aim as the iron sight and then verified with a few shots.

The advantage of this setup will be to improve target acquisition time. It will also give me a chance to learn to use a red dot without spending a lot of money on one. The key with buying cheap is will it work well enough or will it be a source of frustration. I guess I'll find out. I'll post again after the match next Saturday.
Charles

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Tadrian

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #1 on: April 27, 2013, 06:41:18 PM »
Be sure and let us know!
Everyday I write the truth to who I am by what I do.
Life achieves its summit, when it does the uttermost what it was equipped to do.
It's always easier to shift the responsibility of one's existence, to lean on others rather than stand alone, but I refuse to place my destiny in another's hands.

M1911A1

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #2 on: April 27, 2013, 10:45:12 PM »
Charles;
Years ago, when I was still shooting competitively, I learned a trick about using scopes that would transfer well to red-dot sights and lasers.
Do not make the scope, red dot, or laser coincide with your iron sights! (Or with each other, either.)

Instead, make them as parallel as possible.
If you make them coincide, you will have only one common zero point, at only one distance.
But if they see parallel, the zero—actually the correction—will remain the same, regardless of distance.

Example:
I clip-load my Garand. To do that, its scope must be offset up and to the left, in relation to its iron sights. The offset is something like one inch up, and 1.25" left.
If I wish to fire as accurately as possible with the scope, I have to aim off by one inch up and 1.25" left. But in battle-sight terms, that difference is negligible. Even if I hold center, my Garand and its scope will place its hit only 1.25" right and one inch low. For practical purposes, that small amount of offset will obtain out as far as I and my rifle can accurately shoot, and it will be meaningless when I'm hitting a standard silhouette.
But if I were to zero both the scope (or red dot, or laser) and the iron sights to, let's say, 200 yards, then although I would be dead on at 200, I would be a couple of inches too high and too far left at 100, and three or four inches off in each direction at 300. And I would have to remember a whole series of corrections, depending upon the distance at which I'm shooting.

Think about it.
Steve,
retired leathersmith and practical shooter


"Qui desiderat pacem, præparet bellum."

Charles1951

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2013, 06:08:58 AM »
Thanks for that tip, Steve. It makes sense to me. The red dot is about an inch above the iron sights so that will be easy to live with or correct for in aiming if I need to. I think I'll leave what I have this week but then after the competition this coming Saturday I'll set it up as you suggest.
Charles

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CR Williams

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2013, 06:09:57 AM »
I will not be able to get a true co-witness with this sight but I don't think there are any red dots that allow that with AK style iron sights.

There are red dots that can be set up to co-witness with the proper mounts. Also, there are some forends you can get that are made to set specific sights into that set up co-witnessing. It may cost more to do that than you want to invest in the system, though.
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Charles1951

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2013, 06:24:42 AM »
I will not be able to get a true co-witness with this sight but I don't think there are any red dots that allow that with AK style iron sights.

There are red dots that can be set up to co-witness with the proper mounts. Also, there are some forends you can get that are made to set specific sights into that set up co-witnessing. It may cost more to do that than you want to invest in the system, though.

Thanks, CR. Good to know that such red dot systems exist. You are right about the cost being a factor for me though. As soon as the ammo situation returns to normal I'll probably very seldom use this gun.
Charles

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Charles1951

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #6 on: May 04, 2013, 05:29:11 PM »
The advantage of this setup will be to improve target acquisition time. It will also give me a chance to learn to use a red dot without spending a lot of money on one. The key with buying cheap is will it work well enough or will it be a source of frustration. I guess I'll find out. I'll post again after the match next Saturday.

Well, it pains me to say that buying cheap has resulted in frustration for me. The sight worked well enough but I discovered an O-ring seal out of place and falling out. I'm sure that means that the sight is not weather resistant as it should be. Now I'll have to figure out what I can do about that. In the mean time I am not a happy camper.

It worked for me, though. There are several things I liked, some of which I'm sure is true of all red dot sights. You just get the dot where you want to hit your target. You don't have to take time to put the dot in the center of the sight. This sight has a large field of view which helps since it is forward on the gun. A medium-high brightness setting worked well for me on a bright sunny day. Those attributes contribute to fast target acquisition. Now fast is relative. Let's say "faster".

So I focused on having fun and understanding the red dot and did not dwell on the the one negative today. I'll deal with it in time. I can't say I recommend buying cheap but I do like the advantages of a red dot.
Charles

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"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." - Thomas Jefferson

Robert Harvey

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2013, 07:42:11 PM »
did you contact the company and ask them about it?
they might fix it or make it right some way.

Time will tell.

Charles1951

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #8 on: May 04, 2013, 07:54:00 PM »
did you contact the company and ask them about it?
they might fix it or make it right some way.

Since this happened on a Saturday I just filled out a form email on their site. I'll give them a few days then try to call. Yeah, I'm hoping they will stand behind their product. We'll see. Thanks for the suggestion though. Stuff like this really messes up an otherwise great day at the range.

Charles

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Charles1951

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #9 on: May 26, 2013, 07:33:06 PM »
Here is an update on the TruGlo red dot sight. Turns out Midway will handle the warranty. I shipped it back and should get credit for it or a replacement.

As I removed the sight from the hand guard, I noticed something rattling. There was a screw  loose on the hand guard. The screw held the rail in place on the Tapco Intrafuse Quad Rail Handguard. Now, in my opinion this should not have happened on piece of equipment designed to be installed on the AK-47. The cause it came loose is likely recoil.

I had another instance of recoil causing equipment failure recently. The flashlight I mounted on my AR-15 stopped working. Replacing the battery did not fix it so I found another flashlight to mount. Before just tossing the bad one I checked it out and found that the LED had come unscrewed. I tightened it up and it works fine. So now I understand why some flashlights are so expensive. If they are truly designed to be mounted on a gun they have to stand up to recoil. So now I'm looking at a Surefire light.
Charles

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"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." - Thomas Jefferson

Robert Harvey

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #10 on: May 27, 2013, 06:05:15 AM »
unscrewed, red lock tight on the screw part of the bulb. would that help any?
Time will tell.

Charles1951

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2013, 07:56:17 AM »
Loctite may be the answer. Thanks, Robert. I think I'll try that before buying another light.
Charles

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Robert Harvey

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #12 on: May 27, 2013, 08:50:14 AM »
unscrewed, red lock tight on the screw part of the bulb. would that help any?
there are several "levels" of Loctite red, blue,etc make sure you get the level of "lock" that you want.
Time will tell.

mustang125

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #13 on: May 28, 2013, 05:47:41 PM »
Blue loc tite can be loosened with Normal hand tools. It stops most bolts from coming loose. Red loc tite requires heat to loosen. Last time I checked guns get quite warm or maybe hot?

Charles1951

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2013, 08:08:59 PM »
The replacement TruGlo red dot arrived today. It looks to be in good shape and it powers on ok. It will get mounted and tested soon.
Charles

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Tadrian

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #15 on: June 05, 2013, 06:30:42 AM »
The replacement TruGlo red dot arrived today. It looks to be in good shape and it powers on ok. It will get mounted and tested soon.

Keep us posted!
Everyday I write the truth to who I am by what I do.
Life achieves its summit, when it does the uttermost what it was equipped to do.
It's always easier to shift the responsibility of one's existence, to lean on others rather than stand alone, but I refuse to place my destiny in another's hands.

Charles1951

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #16 on: July 07, 2013, 05:53:00 PM »
The replacement works great and the O-ring stayed in place for a match which is about 90 rounds. I'm happy with this setup. I'm sort of glad I was pushed by the ammo shortage to give the WASR-10 some more range time. It is almost as much fun as the AR.
Charles

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"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms." - Thomas Jefferson

mustang125

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #17 on: July 07, 2013, 05:57:00 PM »
It makes more noise so it is more fun. Straight from a Harley owners mouth. Noise= happy happy happy.

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Taurian

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #18 on: September 07, 2013, 07:58:20 AM »
I don't own an AK (although I really would like to). I mounted an Cross Point Tactical 30mm red/green dot sight on the SKS and really like the results (so far). The sight is mounted on a UTG SKS sight mount and (maybe I'm one of the lucky ones) the mount is rock solid when mounted in the SKS and I can still use the iron sights (when needed), although the tunnel of the mount severely restricts the view (you might call it "tunnel vision." Ha! I made a funny!) to each side of the front sight. On the up-side, the tunnel does help my focusing on the intended target.

If I had an AK, I would also consider the Cross Point Tactical 30mm red/green dot sight. I'll be mounting one on my favorite 20-gauge in the near future to see how it handles shotgun recoil with slugs at the 20-gauge level.

As a side note, I do have a Tru-Glo sight on a Ruger 10/22 and it is doing well.
The fact that the GOVERNMENT would even consider removing the natural right to bear arms is the very reason why the 2nd Amendment was written.

Taurian

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Re: A red dot for my AK
« Reply #19 on: February 02, 2014, 12:10:11 PM »
Update:

I have since replaced the CenterPoint Tactical 30mm sight with the UTG SCP-RG40CDQ red/green 40-mm sight (3.9" in length) on the AR, as I needed a sight that would allow me to keep iron sights mounted. I have fired 100 rounds through the firearm since I mounted the new sight. It has performed very well, so far. The sight has a dot that is surrounded by a segmented circle. While the lowest setting is somewhat bright for low-light use, it does fine when outdoors or in moderately-lighted conditions. The sight is set for a 100-yard zero and will do just fine for closer encounters.
The fact that the GOVERNMENT would even consider removing the natural right to bear arms is the very reason why the 2nd Amendment was written.