Iron Sights

I agree strongly with Riverwalker about common guns. In my mind, 12-gauge, 7.62, 5.56, 30-30, 22 cal and 30.06 are the only guns really worth looking at.

Now there will be a lot of gun freaks out there who will rise up in righteous indignation at that statement. You are of course welcome to send me your comments and I will of course pay them the same respect and attention that I showered on my Aunt and Uncle (I still adore those two) the day that they came to tell us about the infinite possibilities available to us as AMWAY dealers.

But Riverwalker, I fail to see what good a scope does on a Marlin 30-30. The cold reality is those things are really only good inside of 100 yards. Scopes are expensive, break easily, and give you a false sense of being Davy Crockett. Iron sights are the way to go. You can even upgrade from the factory stuff if you want.

To me, scopes on a Marlin 30-30 is putting lipstick on a pig.

(yeah, I know, bad analogy...the 30-30 is a great gun)


Bitmap said…
There are a couple of reasons to scope even a short range rifle.

One is that you can see better. I don't know about you but when hunting I've seen a deer that moved into a spot of heavy brush. I could still find him easily with binos but not with the naked eye. I had a rifle with a scout scope and it made him an easy target that I had no hope of finding with iron sights and the naked eye. The range was about 50 yards. The deer was very tasty.

Another reason is that while you may be young and have strong eyes now, at some point in your life (if you live long enough, which is what we are talking about here) your eyes won't be so young and strong. It becomes more difficult to focus on the front sight. Optical sights make up for a lot in that regard.

Another advantage is that a proper scope that is set up properly for the user is fast to use. VERY fast. Faster than irons sights in my experience. A scope that is overpowered or mounted at the wrong height for the user or mounted on the rifle so that the ideal eye relief is not where the user needs it will be slow and difficult to use, and may be impossible to use well. The same goes for cheap optics.

Red dots and holographic sights are another option, but I haven't seen that 1x optics are faster or easier to use than 2x or 2.5x if you keep both eyes open.

As far as them being fragile, I won't argue with you on that, which is why I have BUIS on my rifles. Having backup sights makes sense even if you have iron sights as primary. I've seen iron sights fail, too. Having an open rear sight that folds down as a backup for aperture sights makes a lot of sense, especially if you've got that dovetail slot already cut in the barrel.
Shy Wolf said…
Not to rub salt in a wound, but... at my age, my eyes can't even pick up the iron sights on my rifles- with exception of the peep sight- so a scope is pretty much mandatory unless I wanna 'spray an pray'. Also, as BitMap ssays, a scope will make target ID a lot more simple, picking it up in brush or other kind of cover. IMO, something no more than 4 power on a 30-30 would be a good investment. However- with advent of the 'new and improved' bullets for 30-30, the range has been greatly extended beyond the 'old' capabilities of the round and a scope will be an invaluable aid at the longer ranges. (New balistic tip 30-30 rounds allow faster, more coefficient bullets to be used in tube-fed weapons, extending the range beyond 300 yards where a scope- especially with old eyes- is an advantage.)
BigBear said…
Ain't nothin wrong with Amway :)
riverwalker said…
First off, thanks for the link!

Just like you can't "see" why a scope is needed, there are some who can't "see" that well due to whatever problem they may have with their eyesight.

Unfortunately, due to an old eye injury, my eyesight is not that great and I have had to learn to shoot left-handed while being actually right-handed. That cross-dominance thing can be a big problem but can be overcome. I know because I did!

The biggest factor I consider about the scope + bad eyes situation is that you will be able to positively identify what's in your sights. No accidentally shooting someone by mistake while they're walking in the brush.

As far as range, ballistic improvements in the quality of ammo will probably continue to improve. I currently haven't gotten fairly accurate in the 175 to 180 yard range. With a little more practice, perhaps I could even do better.

All things considered, it's great to see that they're are a lot more people out there that are using the "common guns" concept than I would've thought.

This is a really great post. It seems that great minds think alike. So, other than irritating a few "old guys" a little about the scope comment, this was really a most excellent post Degringolade.

Old One Eye (Riverwalker)
riverwalker said…
To: degringolade

I really enjoyed your "lipstick on a pig" comment. I haven't stopped laughing yet. You're too much!


BTW, I posted a follow up on your post.
theotherryan said…
There are reasons to add a scope to a 30-30 but adding distance is not one of them. If I recall correctly Guns and Ammo (or some other gun porn mag) listed the effective range of a lever action 30-30 @ 130 meters with iron sights and 150 meters with a scope. Bitmap makes a great point that scopes can help those with less then great eyesight even @ 30-30 ranges. Unlike a .30 cal flat shooting bolt gun a scope does not add significantly to the max range of the gun.

To the common caliber thing I would add 7.62x39 and possibly 7.62x54r though it is more of a stretch. The AK and SKS families have almost completely replaced the 30-30 as the poor mans deer rifle.