Reality and Myths of Laser Sights

September 13, 2019
Reality and Myths of Laser Sights

A revolver rifle for sale, usually called a short-barreled rifle, a shotgun, a Glock, and an M-16 A1 all have some basic components in common. One of the changeable components on all these guns, and just about any weapon today, is the sights.

Many shooters have begun fitting their weapons with laser sights. There are a lot of myths about laser sights, many perpetrated by old-style shooters that think technology ruins their sport.

Hollywood has responsibility for other laser sight myths, as weapons with laser sights, real or science fiction guns, have become a staple of action movies.

What Is a Laser Sight?

Laser sights mark your targets with a visible dot of laser light. Sight lasers use two colors: red and green. Red lasers require less energy, and hence the battery lasts longer, and manufacturers can make the batteries very small.



A disadvantage of red lasers is the difficulty to see in bright sun light. Beyond 20-30 feet bright sunlight masks the red spot. To overcome this, some companies have started making pulsating lasers.


The human retina is much more sensitive to green than red. You can see the dot on your target up to 100 yards even in bright sunlight using a green laser. Green lasers use more energy and require more technical buildouts than red laser do. Hence, green lasers generally cost more, are a bit bulkier, and drain batteries quicker.


Law enforcement requires reliable target markers and tends to buy green laser scopes (and extra batteries). Long-distance hunters like green lasers too, especially when hunting game in wide-open spaces our West.

For personal protection, a red laser offers excellent value and works well given most self-defense shootings occur less than five yards from the intended victim. Red has an added self-defense advantage as when an aggressor sees he is lit up by a red dot, he knows the shooter won’t miss. However, you can’t count on this!

Options for Handguns

Manufacturers provide handgun owners with lots of options for mounting including trigger guard, grip, rear, and more.

Trigger Guard Mounts

Trigger guard laser sights are one of the most versatile. These sights mount easily on just about any handgun. If you buy a trigger guard mounted sight and use concealed carry, it may not fit your preferred holster.

Grip Mounts

You must buy grip mounts designed for your handgun’s make and model.

This type of sight is very practical as it does not activate until you grip the gun.

Myth: Lasers Let Me Shoot Better in the Dark

If you fire in low-light conditions, a laser sight, just like a red dot sight, can help your aim. However, lasers can’t light up a target in a pitch-dark room. A laser needs to hit an object, animal, person, rock, car, dust mote, or smoke, that can reflect light.

Your laser sight doesn’t shoot out a visible beam of light that would allow your target to trace the path back to you unless there is a lot of smoke, dust, or something else to reflect the light as the beam travels from your weapon.

Myth: You Can’t Miss with a Laser Sight

Although the bullet you fire may go where a sturdily mounted, calibrated laser light goes, you still need to, as we all learn from our first day on the range, to breathe, relax, aim, take up the slack, and squeeze the trigger. If you don’t use the proper technique the gun barrel, and laser sight, will go off-target when you fire.

Myth: You Shoot Faster with a Laser

You can only shoot faster with a laser sight if you know how to aim and shoot well in the first place. If you don’t practice proper technique, the laser will wiggle all over the place and may even slow you down.

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