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7x57
03-09-2009, 7:25 PM
I have a Kimber with fixed 3-dot tritium sights, and I've decided I must not grok the intended sight picture. It shoots 2-3" high for me, but as I grew up with ordinary open rifle sights I use them the same way: the post is centered in the square notch with the tops even across.

I finally figured out that this may not be the intended picture. With the sights aligned that way, the center of the somewhat smaller front dot is not in line with the two rear dots, but rather the tops are somewhat even, which puts the (again smaller visually) front dot's center higher than the rear. I'm ignoring the dots out of lifelong habit, but I suspect that if I lined up the centers of the dots I'd find it shoots more to the point of aim (something to test next time I go to the range). I imagine that this is what is intended, as it would be about the same as what you'd have to do at night (when all you can see is the tritium dots).

Anyone have a Kimber that can tell me what PoI it shoots to and confirm the above? So am I right, that I'm supposed to align the dot centers? If so, that's a problem for me. I can try to learn to use the dots in all lighting conditions, but it really really bugs me if the post isn't aligned with the top of the notch. The most expensive option would be to have the front post raised or something, so that the PoI is the same with either sight picture.

Sigh. Can't you tactical kids leave stuff that's worked for <mumble> hundred years alone? ;)

7x57

PutTogether
03-09-2009, 7:30 PM
Tops of the posts lined up with each other. Then that horizontal line placed just below what it is i am trying to hit.

Like this: http://www.gunaccessories.com/brightsights/bsi_brochure_cover_2.gif

Now if you were lining up so that the dot was directly in front of what you wanted to hit, instead of right below it, you could end up a bit high. It could also be that your sights are off. Or that you aren't locking your wrists hard enough to tame the .45. Or that you are using a heavier bullet than you were previously used to, (all things equal, heavier bullets shoot a bit higher than lighter ones at short ranges) or any number of things...........

NiteQwill
03-09-2009, 7:36 PM
My Kimber shoots POA POI. Unlike my Springfield, which has a 6 O'clock POA POI.

Have you considered just changing out the rear sight to, like, a 10-8 sight?

7x57
03-09-2009, 7:56 PM
Tops of the posts lined up with each other. Then that horizontal line placed just below what it is i am trying to hit.


That looks like my sight picture. Straight across on the post & notch.


Now if you were lining up so that the dot was directly in front of what you wanted to hit, instead of right below it, you could end up a bit high.


I just worked out what alignment worked. It shoots considerably above the post, so I originally thought it was set for a pumpkin-on-a-post sight picture (which is certainly still a possibility) to shoot to the red bullseye when the outer black circle is sitting on the post. That seems wrong for a tactical pistol, however.


It could also be that your sights are off. Or that you aren't locking your wrists hard enough to tame the .45. Or that you are using a heavier bullet than you were previously used to, (all things equal, heavier bullets shoot a bit higher than lighter ones at short ranges) or any number of things...........

I think the LAPD shoots 230gr HST through their pistols and the TLE is essentially the same gun, so I don't expect the ammo to be an issue (it's about the same with all the 230gr ammo I've tried).

I don't really think it is the hold either, since I've tended to shoot to the PoI with other pistols, but I had a chance to get a second opinion last weekend and I wish I'd done so. I hadn't thought about the possibility of a different sight picture then and still assumed that pumpkin-on-a-post alignment was the only explanation.

I suppose I could actually phone Kimber and say "I'm an idiot, explain your sights to me." :D

7x57

smittty
03-09-2009, 9:45 PM
Center the front dot between the two rear dots. There is nothing simpler.

7x57
03-09-2009, 10:17 PM
Center the front dot between the two rear dots. There is nothing simpler.

That's the point of the question--if you do that, you have a different sight picture than if you line up the top of the post with the top of the notch. The latter is what I do instinctively. If I consciously do as you suggest, then having the post down in the notch bothers me enormously. It could be a case of an old dog not wanting to learn new tricks, but if that is what the sights are set for I don't know if I can get used to it.

I was thinking about all this again because I shot a nice .38 special over the weekend that shot right to my PoA using the sight picture I want, and I realized how much I am fighting with the Kimber's sights.

7x57

cactustactical
03-09-2009, 10:54 PM
You are shooting high?... Try using a 6 oclock hold instead of a point of aim, kinda like a lolipop on a stick.

either that or, (what I would do) paint the rear dots black along with the entire rear sight :)

It's much faster to just look at the front sight, use the dot to pick it up and line up the tops of the sight centered in the middle of the target... adjust the sights until you get this sight pic.


.

PutTogether
03-09-2009, 11:08 PM
From what distance are you shooting? If you are less than 10yds, so called "pumpkin on a post" sounds about right for a fixed sight 1911.

Doesn't the TLE have a different mainspring housing than the other Kimbers? I know flat vs arched can throw some shooters WAY off. Could explain why other pistols work fine for you but this one is giving you issues.

7x57
03-09-2009, 11:09 PM
You are shooting high?... Try using a 6 oclock hold instead of a point of aim, kinda like a lolipop on a stick.


Yeah, I was shooting pumpkin-on-a-stick (6 o'clock) and was happy enough punching holes in paper as it was pretty much on the bullseye when holding at the bottom of the black circle. That's why I didn't think much of it. But shooting at silhouettes or oddly-shaped steel, I don't like it so much. To do well, I need it to shoot to my aim point.

I was shooting a revolver double-action better than the 1911, and while the pull was nice and smooth that shouldn't happen. I am pretty sure the only real reason was that I was back to the sight picture I have always used. That tells me it's time to do something different.


either that or, (what I would do) paint the rear dots black along with the entire rear sight :)

It's much faster to just look at the front sight, use the dot to pick it up and line up the tops of the sight centered in the middle of the target... adjust the sights until you get this sight pic.
.

To be honest, I don't much like looking a the dots at all, as I'm not used to having them. I'm not conscious of them when shooting in daylight (thus, just about anytime I can actually practice). I'd paint over all of them including the one on the front sight, except I rather like having them on a HD gun that I might plausibly have to shoot in the dark.

The sights aren't adjustable in any case--otherwise, I would have just set them how I like them and not bothered to ask if there was a different way to use the dots. :D

7x57

HCz
03-10-2009, 12:36 AM
Don't look at dots if you can. Dots are there to help in low light condition, but they do have their problems. One thing you can do is to see how dots align when the top of sights align. Usually the top of dots should align, but it varies from pistol to pistol.

7x57
03-10-2009, 8:44 AM
Don't look at dots if you can. Dots are there to help in low light condition, but they do have their problems. One thing you can do is to see how dots align when the top of sights align. Usually the top of dots should align, but it varies from pistol to pistol.

OK, this is kind of what I was asking about. If I use the sights in the dark, I naturally want to align the *centers* of the dots in a line. That's just what I naturally perceive as "on target," without ever having been told that's the intended sight picture.

But when I align the top of the sights, then the top of the smaller center (front) dot is more or less aligned with the top of the rear dots just as you say, and thus the centers are not aligned. That's why I asked if there was something I should know about the actual intended sight picture, and perhaps you've just given me the answer: I would need to learn to align the tops as you suggest and not the centers. That would solve one problem, the fact that the sight pictures seemed inconsistent to me. I think it would shoot to the same point of aim using the dots or the blade, which seems to me how it should work.

I don't know how hard it will be to get me to do that, maybe I can manage it. Then I just have to deal with the PoI being above the PoA and have the sights adjusted somehow, unless the problem is me as one poster suggested.

7x57

freakshow10mm
03-10-2009, 8:57 AM
Depends on how you want to use them.

Some line up the dots and the center dot is their aim point.

Some line up the top of the sights and the rounds will strike above it.

I use a flash sight setup where I have a tritium dot front sight and a plain black rear. Front sight where I want the bullet to go, then send it. Quicker under stress. If you can see your rear sight in a gunfight, that's fine. For me, if I index my weapon at the threat and use the front sight like a shotgun bead, I'm good to go.

Look where the bullets should go, bring the gun up, when you see the front sight line up with the target (where you are looking), make your shot.

For me, 3 dot sights are too busy. Give me one reference point and I'll do the rest.

dgey
03-10-2009, 3:52 PM
I have a CDP II pro with factory night sights. I learned that the dots are to be line up horizontally then you cover the what you want to hit. I shoot this way with all my guns and they all have different POI like you. If your Kimber is your main gun, I'd learn to shoot it the way it works for you...

7x57
03-10-2009, 4:13 PM
If your Kimber is your main gun, I'd learn to shoot it the way it works for you...

It is, so one way or the other we're going to have to come to agreement on where the bullets are going to go. :D

We get along pretty well in terms of group size, so we just have to negotiate precisely where the group is going to go. And by "negotiate" I quite possibly mean I'll have to have the sights re-regulated; I doubt that any amount of attempting to re-train a lifetime of sight-picture prejudices would work. Under stress, I'll likely shoot just the way I always have. I was asking just to make sure I understood the current regulation before I started fiddling, though. As I said, fixed sights are new to me so I can't just quickly fiddle with them at the range until I'm happy.

7x57

BamBam-31
03-10-2009, 9:28 PM
Sounds like it's time for a plain black rear sight. There are many quality rear sights to choose from. :)

esskay
03-11-2009, 2:33 PM
Sounds like it's time for a plain black rear sight. There are many quality rear sights to choose from. :)

yep, or a straight eight type of set up with just one dot in the rear so that you have a reference point at night but looks pretty much like plain black in the day