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Red dot for <$150 ?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/24/2009 at 12:42
perhaps40t View Drop Down
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Hey guys,
Newbie here.  I recently went on a barricaded subject with a gun call and was less than pleased with my department issue night sights on my M4.  I need to get an optical sight but am a family man and money is very limited.  I am looking at the red dot options on the market.  I don't need bells and whistles, I just need it to stay true and have a clear sight picture.  I would like a sight picture with more than just the dot (circle dot, crosshairs, etc.).  The Barska AR 15/M16 1x30 Electro Scope looks okay but I have heard (read) bad things about their traditional scopes.  The Bushnell Trophy 1x32 Red Dot looks okay but it's about $180.  I know that if I could pay more, I would get more but that's not an option.  What should I get in my price range?
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/24/2009 at 13:06
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I have used The Bushnell Trophy 1x32 Red Dot.  Its not bad however, as with everthing, you get what you pay for.  Eventually your gonna want to save up for a good optic.  Remember, your gonna want to come home every night.  You dont want to trust your life to something that might not come through for you. Good Luck.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/24/2009 at 17:06
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I bought the Bushnell, $132.00 on Amazon.  I looked like a better sight picture and has the option of switching between red and green.  I think the Barska is just red.  I will let you know if I like it for anyone else on a budget.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/24/2009 at 17:18
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Not sure I'd put a $150 red dot on a duty gun.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/24/2009 at 17:58
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Originally posted by Rancid Coolaid Rancid Coolaid wrote:

Not sure I'd put a $150 red dot on a duty gun.
 
Plus 1....
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/24/2009 at 20:46
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Would you take your SAT tests with a Crayola?
 
Some day you might need to count on your optic to keep you alive.  Spend the money that is necessary.  If you don't have it now, save up, better to buy once and cry once than to have to take money away from the family twice.
 
Sell sperm if necessary, that's what I do.  There is always more than enough room for another retard bouncing around in the Chuck-E-Cheese ball pit.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/24/2009 at 20:50
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Sell sperm if necessary, that's what I do.  There is always more than enough room for another retard bouncing around in the Chuck-E-Cheese ball pit.
[/QUOTE]


LOL that's some funny stuff, hell I think I should probly give that a shot Big Grin

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/24/2009 at 21:00
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Just make sure you put the deposit in the cup.  I had been going there for two years before I found that one out.  No wonder the cleaning lady was always giving me dirty looks.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/24/2009 at 23:01
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If it is a duty gun, I would probably be very leery of putting an inexpensive red dot on it.

That having been said, the cheapest decent red dot I have played with is Vortex Strikefire.  I have been torturing one for a while and it still works:

Another red dot that I have been happy with is Millett ZoomDot.  I like it more than the Strikefire, but it is more expensive.  It seems to have a good track record for durability the ebst I can tell:

Ultimately, if this is going on a duty gun, it may be worth your while to go with either an Eotech or an Aimpoint.  While I prefer the sight picture of the Eotech, Aimpints battery life (essentially forever) wins out in my opinion.

The best Aimpoint (in my opinion) is one of the new Micro ones:

But any one of them would work well and the cheapest is this one:

I have a 4MOA version of it and it is a very nice piece. 

ILya

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/25/2009 at 01:59
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Aimpoint T-1 with Larue mount.
Spend the money on a quality optic. You'll live and feel better. Possibly longer, in your case.  Wink 
 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/25/2009 at 06:09
perhaps40t View Drop Down
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Yeah, I wish it was a matter of "wanting" to spend the money or not.  First off, thanks to those that read my post and gave me honest, flame free, information.  secondly, To those who feel the need to tell me that the job I have done for quite some time is dangerous and I should "just spend the money" and especially to the one that tried to guilt me into it for my family, I'm sure you impressed your pals on here but you are ridiculous from my point of view.  BTW, shopping for something on the salary of a small-county employee and knowing the importance of my tools while also knowing that I cannot afford the best that is on the market is tough enough without idiots like you trying to make me feel guilty for not being able to afford better.  You guys have fun on here, I won't be back.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/25/2009 at 10:20
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Well, I went back and read your initial post. I'm sorry that I suggested something that you stated was beyond your budget and I meant no disrespect.
I'm also quite sure the other guys, (one of whom is a fellow LE) meant no harm as well.
 
Let's start over...OK?
 
As an aside:
Rather than use an optic that may let you down at the most inopportune time, what about just running a good set of irons?    
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/25/2009 at 11:24
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My apologies if I offended you.  My comments were not intended to flame, just point out some real deficiencies.
 
I appreciate the job that you do for your family and community.  I understand that it is often a thankless job that can also put one's life in danger.
 
My comments came purely from my experience.  Not trying to guilt you into anything, or impress any of my internet pals.  Good thing I'm ridiculous to you, just in case you were wondering though, you might not be the only one on this board with any real world experience.
 
 


Edited by diggler1833 - December/25/2009 at 13:52
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/25/2009 at 11:27
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I had a Vortex Strikefire fail its first time out, but the replacement worked well.

 
Be advised that the "on" button is on the side and can be engaged accidentally - and it will.
 
 
I don't think anyone here was trying to disrespect you or give you undue greif.  Be aware that lesser red dots fail more frequently or are not as precise and accurate as better optics.
 
We appreciate that law enforcement are not the most highly compensated, but the advice to save a little longer is, I think, good.  In truth, I'd prefer irons over inexpensive red dots (with a tritium post up front) or irons with a laser for close work.
 
Let us know what you get.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/25/2009 at 11:50
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Originally posted by perhaps40t perhaps40t wrote:

Yeah, I wish it was a matter of "wanting" to spend the money or not.  First off, thanks to those that read my post and gave me honest, flame free, information.  secondly, To those who feel the need to tell me that the job I have done for quite some time is dangerous and I should "just spend the money" and especially to the one that tried to guilt me into it for my family, I'm sure you impressed your pals on here but you are ridiculous from my point of view.  BTW, shopping for something on the salary of a small-county employee and knowing the importance of my tools while also knowing that I cannot afford the best that is on the market is tough enough without idiots like you trying to make me feel guilty for not being able to afford better.  You guys have fun on here, I won't be back.
 Look, I'm in a similar boat financially, as are a lot of folks. Not enough money to stretch where to we'd like it to.
 
But I probably wouldn't have gotten offended if some of the guys here suggested that my life was worth more than to trust it to a cheaper product with some clear deficiencies.
 I think you need to step back a little and reevaluate this whole situation.
 
 I would suggest a good Surefire light in conjunction with your irons for the time being. If you can document the problem you had during your "incident", your Department should do something to ensure it doesn't happen again, at least from a liability standpoint.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/25/2009 at 16:05
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My apologies.  I offended you.  Was not my intent. 
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/25/2009 at 16:23
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Bushnell 1-4x24 Trophy 30mm Rifle Scope 4A w/ Illuminated Dot Bushnell 1-4x24 Trophy 30mm Rifle Scope
Stock # - 731424M
  • Matte
  • 4A w/ Illuminated Dot
  • 30mm
$144.95
Add Bushnell 1-4x24 Trophy 30mm Rifle Scope to Cart 
http://swfa.com/SWFA-SS-Mounts-C2675.aspx   The second generation Super Sniper one piece mount should be out any time now and could probably be pre - ordered if you called SWFA.   The price should be reasonable and the cost a bargain compared to other possibles in this field.  
 
While the Bushnell Trophy would not be my choice if money was not so tight it will work for you and is a pretty darn tough scope with  1x to 4x  #4 reticle with illuminated dot.   I have one of these and I had to put a small piece of wide rubber band between the cap and the battery to hold the battery in place better so that it would always illuminate.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: December/30/2009 at 21:23
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I have a trijicon red dot that cost me around $200 dollars with mount. It is super clear and automatically adjusts to changing light. It has a 4 MOA dot which is small enough to shoot small birds in the head at 50yds!
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/22/2010 at 21:34
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I know this is an old thread but had to add...My friend and I are LE. He has two Aimpoints fail and I have had one fail. All either M2 or M3s. One of which did not make it much past the zeroing process. All in Larue mounts and none of the weapons had been dropped or subjected to any abuse yet. On the other hand he has a Vortex strikefire that has been used hard for a couple years with no issue. Though many will laugh, I used a BSA RD42 on SWAT for 7 years back when I had little money. It took a lot of abuse and never lost zero or failed despite short battery life.

I have been very happy with my replacement M3 and most recent Aimpoint micro. As far as Eotech...Well neither of mine were able to maintain zero after being in a vehicle rack for more than a week or two.

I agree that Aimpoint would be considered my first choice if I could afford it. But even the best fail. Have a bright light and know how to shoot with your back up iron sights no matter what.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2010 at 10:27
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Mike, from time to time it happens: someone has the complete opposite experience as everyone else on the planet.  I've seen it here and abroad before: their S&B failed, but their BSA is the nuts.

I'm not going to argue with you (other than to point out you didn't run a Vortex Strikefire hard for a few years since they have been out almost exactly 1 year), you claim to have had many Aimpoints and EoTech fail, but your "lesser scopes" run forever, that is extraordinarily fortunate for you. 

The rest of the planet has other experiences, else Aimpoint and EoTech would not be among the most trusted CQB optics in military and LE fields.

I've owned both (Aimpoint and EoTech) and both have been superb, and none was on a "safe queen" rifle.  I also owned a Strikefire, got it immediately after they came out, and it failed the first time out.  When I talked to Vortex (they were exceedingly helpful) they said the new ones (and, remember, this is immediately after they came out) had 2nd gen electronics that were much better  - the gen2 didn't fail, but I sold it due to lack of confidence.

I say this less for Mike and more for those who wander in:  Aimpoint and EoTech are all over Iraq, Afghanistan, and other parts and are well loved and respected by their users.  In optics, as in most things: you get what you pay for.  Vortex makes a good product (I cannot say the same for BSA) but I wouldn't put it on a duty gun.  Aimpoint and EoTech are well proven and are very tough, very accurate, and very reliable.  Yes, anything mechanical and/or electronic can/will fail, but not often - and DEFINITELY not in the same proportions Mike indicates.

Carry onn.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2010 at 17:03
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BSA Red Dot 42mm Scope Red Dot BSA Red Dot 42mm Scope
Stock # - RD42SB
  • Shadow Black
  • Red Dot
  • 42mm
$64.95
Add BSA Red Dot 42mm Scope to Cart
"used a BSA RD42 on SWAT for 7 years ....."
 
Boy if that isnt holding up the just kick me sign for civil litigation.
 
There is unfortunately a huge lack of knowledge about weapons and optics within law enforcement -- especially in small agencies. Most large agencies typically have at least a few knowledgable people and if they are fortunate a few exceptional people, unfortunately those are seldom the ones in charge.  Whoever authorized you to carry a BSA on duty should have been relieved of command.  All of us who have spent time behind the badge have seen some stupid things done -   hopefully we have learned from the mistakes of the past.   If you are so rough on your equipment that your quality optics are not holding zero  then you need to either go to a pelican case or use iron sights.  Really its OK to have a gun or two with iron sights.  Police
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/23/2010 at 17:10
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Originally posted by cheaptrick cheaptrick wrote:

Aimpoint T-1 with Larue mount.
Spend the money on a quality optic. You'll live and feel better. Possibly longer, in your case.  Wink 
 


Thunbs Up    Thunbs Up
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/24/2010 at 12:20
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You use what you can afford after thousands of rounds of proof. I did not say I would run BSA over others just that it worked for me as it worked for many in the 82nd AB before regular troops were able to get the govt to provide optics. I admit my results were likley a fluke as it is a fluke to have Aimpoints fail like that. You talk as though I know nothing, I do not care as no one knows anyone on the net. Pricey gear does not save you liability...missing shots does. Nothing makes up for knowing your gear, limitations of both gear and shooter and time behind the gun. But what I was saying was if that I was potentially placed in harms way everynight on patrol but could not afford the Aimpoint right now, I would consider the right lesser red dot now till I could afford the other. Having been there, a cheap red dot at night at urban cop ranges beats iron sights. Maybe there should be a resume section on some forums since out of the mainstream opinions bring about criticism from some without really knowing the experience and ability of the other.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/24/2010 at 17:34
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Mike46 you seem rather defensive at post 12 after telling us what crap aimpoint and EoTech are and how Vortex strikefire and BSA RD42 are the cats meow.  Now you insinuate that the 82nd Airborne equipped themselves with BSA trying to defend a choice that was not in line with the choices of knowledgable law enforcement professionals.  Part of the reason why other agencies follow the leadership of the F.B.I. in selection of weapon systems and ammunition is the testing that is done in the selection process.  Since the F.B.I. is the investigating agency for police excessive use of force complaints doing business the way the F.B.I. does tends to eliminate some of the variable factors that can be used adversely against officers by attorneys.  Ex. why did you select this caliber of ammunition officer friendly -  I selected it because it is the same ammunition the F.B.I. selected after extensive testing.   When you work outside the box and select a not standard piece of equipment any failure or subsequent injury sustained by any person as a result of that equipment selection is back on YOU.  Officer friendly better be able to defend in court why the rest of the law enforcement world is using Aimpoint and EOTech and ACOG's and he is using the BSA RD42.  

It may work for you - but if if fails you and injury results due to use of a non standard or unauthorised piece of equipment you can be assured that a good attorney will make you out to be the devil.

I understand not being able to easily afford the kind of optics that are needed to do the job having spent 4 yrs on SWAT in San Antonio but sometimes you just have to make the sacrifice and pay what it takes to get what you need or reword the way you are requesting it within the department so that the request shows a reduciton in liability risk that can be achieved by adding this equipment.  Other options include soliciting contributions from banks who will possibly contribute funds for police optics to be able to use that toward their "Community Reinvestment Act"  where banks contribute money  back to their community to improve the community makeing it a better safer place, or doing some type of fund raiser.  



Edited by Urimaginaryfrnd - January/24/2010 at 18:35
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: January/24/2010 at 17:59
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"Aimpoint red dot sights are the original red dot sights. Aimpoints have the widest field of view, are 100% parallax free, and are waterproof and shockproof. You do not have to center the dot; you hit where you aim. They are available in two dot sizes; 4 minute of angle (M.O.A.)= 4" @ 100 yds for precision shooting and 2 minute of angle = 2" @ 100 yds in the 2x versions. Aimpoints have no eye relief so they work on handguns, rifles, or shotguns.

Aimpoint's electronic reflex sights are manufactured using a unique patented double front lens which eliminates the parallax error inherent in other red dot sights. This feature allows the shooter to get on target more quickly and shoot more accurately, because the dot does not need to be centered inside the sight; if the dot is on it, then you will hit it."

As for my recomendation in an inexpensive optic I suggest this traditional optic with illuminated #4 reticle.
Bushnell 1-4x24 Trophy 30mm Rifle Scope 4A w/ Illuminated Dot Bushnell 1-4x24 Trophy 30mm Rifle Scope
Stock # - 731424M
  • Matte
  • 4A w/ Illuminated Dot
  • 30mm
$144.95
Add Bushnell 1-4x24 Trophy 30mm Rifle Scope to Cart 
The traditional optic with an illuminated dot center has to be centered but it is same same as all other traditional optics therefore not an issue where a inexpensive dot  that is not centered will strike off target.   To test this set the dot sight on a table and move around behind it to see if the dot remains pointed at exactly the same point  when it is not centered as when it is.  Longer distances exagerates this effect.


Edited by Urimaginaryfrnd - January/24/2010 at 18:02
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