What makes Glock factory sights poor for competitive shooting? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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PettyOfficer
08-25-2012, 14:32
I have a NIB 17 that I want to start competing with (complete and absolute newb), and I've read a lot of threads on which sights others use, but I'd like to learn why are factory sights so bad?

What are the ideal characteristics for a competitive sight?

When people mention sight sizes, I suspect sight radius is important, is there an equation that would help me isolate sizes to radius so I don't buy something too big or too small?

I don't have friends who shoot non-stock guns, so I have no access to trying other sights to find out what I like. I'm going to have to take others opinions and maybe some mathematical analysis into account when deciding on sights.

DannyR
08-25-2012, 14:37
There is absolutely nothing wrong with Glock factory sights. Many, many GSSF competitors use them. Folks buy aftermarket sights to tailor their Glock to their vision needs. Some like plain black sights. Many cannot shoot with plain black sights. Some seek a slight competitive advantage by using fiber optic sights. Some fit their Glocks with 2-dot or 3-dot night sights. There is no magic set of sights. Everyone's eyes and needs differ.

Carbonfly
08-25-2012, 14:53
There is absolutely nothing wrong with Glock factory sights.

Exactly, except that everything is wrong with them! I don't know why Glock wastes the time putting sights on the gun. Just send it blank because everyone I know changes their sights anyways. It's one of the cost factors you have to include when buying one. You aren't spending $500 on a Glock....you actually spend about $600 on it once you've put real sights on it.

I generally never complain about Glock's products, but this is one area that a lot of other gun manufacturers get right from the start.

PettyOfficer, go shoot a competition and then try to shoot someone else's gun with real sights. You will soon find out how bad the stock sights really are.

Glockrunner
08-25-2012, 16:05
Exactly, except that everything is wrong with them! I don't know why Glock wastes the time putting sights on the gun. Just send it blank because everyone I know changes their sights anyways. It's one of the cost factors you have to include when buying one. You aren't spending $500 on a Glock....you actually spend about $600 on it once you've put real sights on it.

I generally never complain about Glock's products, but this is one area that a lot of other gun manufacturers get right from the start.

PettyOfficer, go shoot a competition and then try to shoot someone else's gun with real sights. You will soon find out how bad the stock sights really are.

I shoot both Glock sights regular Glock sights just fine.
What's the problem?

DWARREN123
08-25-2012, 16:07
Nothing if they work for you. Sights like firearms must fit the shooter.

jbglock
08-25-2012, 19:53
My advice is compete with the factory sights to start with. Personally I wish Glock would only offer two options. Either the factory adjustable or Trijicon night sights but that is just because that is what I prefer.

Happypuppy
08-25-2012, 20:44
The problem with the stock Glock sights is they are plastic. They work well enough, I just want a sturdier sight.


Sent via Mental Power

ron59
08-25-2012, 21:11
The "radius" is mostly affected by barrel/slide length, although some sights might change that marginally. So don't consider that factor.

Many competitors don't like the stock sights because they're plastic, although Glock's changing from the old staked front to a screw helped the problem with front sight coming off.

Many don't like the stock ones because of the front sight width... it's too wide for me. Also too busy. I like all black front/rears, others maybe a fiber optic front.

kyglockshooter 2.0
08-25-2012, 21:16
There is absolutely nothing wrong with Glock factory sights. Many, many GSSF competitors use them. Folks buy aftermarket sights to tailor their Glock to their vision needs. Some like plain black sights. Many cannot shoot with plain black sights. Some seek a slight competitive advantage by using fiber optic sights. Some fit their Glocks with 2-dot or 3-dot night sights. There is no magic set of sights. Everyone's eyes and needs differ.

You also missed race guns with red dot sights. I know not something you carry everyday but its an option.

Shooter64
08-25-2012, 21:24
Shoot with the original sights and see what you can improve on. Ask the other shooters if you could look at their sights and sight pictures.
It has taken me a few years to get a good idea of what works for me. I'm still tinkering with my sights. For me a wide slot in the rear sight, a narrow front sight with a fiber optic or a bright flourecent orange dot works for me.
I started ten years ago with the stock glock sights.

Sent from TapTalk 2

PettyOfficer
08-25-2012, 23:25
The "radius" is mostly affected by barrel/slide length, although some sights might change that marginally. So don't consider that factor.

Many competitors don't like the stock sights because they're plastic, although Glock's changing from the old staked front to a screw helped the problem with front sight coming off.

Many don't like the stock ones because of the front sight width... it's too wide for me. Also too busy. I like all black front/rears, others maybe a fiber optic front.

Yeah, I'm aware of what the sight radius is.. However, when considering that a fixed width object like a front sight will get smaller the further away (larger radius), a logical person would want to know how to pick the proper width such that it's not too small if too far away or too large if not far enough.

Are there rules of thumb or any industry thoughts on sight size selections?

I'm sure with a little effort and trigonometry I could calculate the expected perceived sized over a given radius.

Butch
08-26-2012, 00:32
Like others have said, sights really are a personal preference thing, with use and experience, you will find what you like.

Shoot with the factory sights for a while...you might like them...I use them for GSSF competition, I also used to use them for USPSA back when, and I've done very well with them!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Gunny%20Challenge%20Match/2008GunnyMatch3-30-08.jpg

Those who tell you that factory Glock sights are junk, are simply giving their opinion. Keep in mind that whether they have a clue or not, it's just their personal preference.

Carbonfly
08-26-2012, 05:15
I could stare at these sights all day.......just saying.

http://i651.photobucket.com/albums/uu234/carbonfly/Gun%20Stuff/66019099.jpg
http://i651.photobucket.com/albums/uu234/carbonfly/Gun%20Stuff/8622a0e1.jpg

Roadkill_751
08-26-2012, 08:27
Like others have said, sights really are a personal preference thing, with use and experience, you will find what you like.

Shoot with the factory sights for a while...you might like them...I use them for GSSF competition, I also used to use them for USPSA back when, and I've done very well with them!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Gunny%20Challenge%20Match/2008GunnyMatch3-30-08.jpg

Those who tell you that factory Glock sights are junk, are simply giving their opinion. Keep in mind that whether they have a clue or not, it's just their personal preference.

Hey Butch,

You forgot to mention, when you shoot the Gunny Challenge, you do not get to choose the sights to use. You use which ever they feel like installing on the Gunny Challenge guns provided by Glock.

Butch
08-26-2012, 09:33
Hey Butch,

You forgot to mention, when you shoot the Gunny Challenge, you do not get to choose the sights to use. You use which ever they feel like installing on the Gunny Challenge guns provided by Glock.
Yup, the sights don't make the gun more accurate!

The differing guns used there over the years have had a bunch of different sights....Factory polymer, three dot night sights, Warrens, and last year, the Ameriglo fiber optic....and they all worked, but the plain black Warren sights were hard to see well against the black hit zone on the steel D-1 targets, ya really have to concentrate on staying focused on the front sight.

My least favorite? The three dot night sights....just never liked three dot sights.

Here are the sights on the G38 I carry, they're steel with a night sight on the front, but they give a sight picture very similar to certain polymer sights that I like a lot. :)
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Glock%20pics/DSC01169-1.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Glock%20sights/DSC00792.jpg

SCC
08-26-2012, 09:40
Yup, the sights don't make the gun more accurate!

The differing guns used there over the years have had a bunch of different sights....Factory polymer, three dot night sights, Warrens, and last year, the Ameriglo fiber optic....and they all worked, but the plain black Warren sights were hard to see well against the black hit zone on the steel D-1 targets, ya really have to concentrate on staying focused on the front sight.

My least favorite? The three dot night sights....just never liked three dot sights.

Here are the sights on the G38 I carry, they're steel with a night sight on the front, but they give a sight picture very similar to certain polymer sights that I like a lot. :)
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Glock%20pics/DSC01169-1.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Glock%20sights/DSC00792.jpg
who's the front sight by ?

lethal tupperwa
08-26-2012, 09:57
shoots the Gunny?

how about won it THREE TIMES!

cookselk
08-26-2012, 10:46
Like others have said, sights really are a personal preference thing, with use and experience, you will find what you like.

Shoot with the factory sights for a while...you might like them...I use them for GSSF competition, I also used to use them for USPSA back when, and I've done very well with them!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Gunny%20Challenge%20Match/2008GunnyMatch3-30-08.jpg

Those who tell you that factory Glock sights are junk, are simply giving their opinion. Keep in mind that whether they have a clue or not, it's just their personal preference.

I also shoot the regular factory sights, albeit not as well as Butch does. I have tried fiber optics and will give them another chance but right now I'm leaning to going back to the stock sights. I shoot them well and having the same sights on all your glocks for all 6 divisions seems to aid in my consistency.

BamaTrooper
08-26-2012, 11:17
I find the amount of white on the stock sights to be distracting as it seems to catch the light and become too bright.

When I try to line up the stock sights for a "precision" shot, the dot on the front makes me slower to get the up/down I need.

Personal preference, for nonXring shooting is a thin front sight with a fiber optic (red most often) and a wide notch for the rear. I also like my rear sight to be some sort of configuration that doesn't shine.

On my self defense guns, I use a night sight front sight and plain rear. This is suffcient to recreate my target set up.

For precision shooting, I prefer all black.

mike g35
08-26-2012, 11:56
I find the amount of white on the stock sights to be distracting as it seems to catch the light and become too bright.

When I try to line up the stock sights for a "precision" shot, the dot on the front makes me slower to get the up/down I need.

Personal preference, for nonXring shooting is a thin front sight with a fiber optic (red most often) and a wide notch for the rear. I also like my rear sight to be some sort of configuration that doesn't shine.

On my self defense guns, I use a night sight front sight and plain rear. This is suffcient to recreate my target set up.

For precision shooting, I prefer all black.
Precision shooting? Precision shooting I prefer....well.......I guess I prefer to let someone capable of shooting with precision take the shot!!! :rofl:
Seriously I actually got a chance to shoot all black sights not long ago and I prefer them to the FO sights I was shooting FOR GSSF, for USPSA I use a different setup but that has no bearing here. The one thing I learned this year was to pick a particular style of sights and use them and just them on all your guns. Then as Ron says "shoot the crap out of them". I have even decided to only shoot my 17. One gun, one set of sights, and a butt load of practice. That's my plan for accurate shooting.:wavey:
(UL division excluded of course)

ron59
08-26-2012, 15:15
Yeah, I'm aware of what the sight radius is.. However, when considering that a fixed width object like a front sight will get smaller the further away (larger radius), a logical person would want to know how to pick the proper width such that it's not too small if too far away or too large if not far enough.

Are there rules of thumb or any industry thoughts on sight size selections?

I'm sure with a little effort and trigonometry I could calculate the expected perceived sized over a given radius.

But therein lies the rub... there is no "rule". Some like front sight to fill the entire rear notch, others like a very thin front. For the principal Glock competition sized guns (17/34 sizes) the differing sight radiuses arent different enough to make the front size change that much.. at least I didn't notice any when going from 17 to 34.

When I was going through same decision as yourself, I just picked the Warren Sevignys. Knowing, they have a couple of different front widths available if I wanted to change. Or a F.O. if I wanted that. Plus Dawson has all types of choices. The rear sight appears to be the most expensive part of the equation as fronts are ~$30 where full set is over $70 I think?

PettyOfficer
08-26-2012, 18:11
[QUOTE=Butch;19349001]I use them for GSSF competition, I also used to use them for USPSA back when, and I've done very well with them!

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Gunny%20Challenge%20Match/2008GunnyMatch3-30-08.jpg

Apparently!!!

Butch
08-26-2012, 21:56
who's the front sight by ?

Ameriglo!

SCC
08-27-2012, 16:45
thank you butch

whiskerz
08-27-2012, 18:06
I wish they were sturdier . I blackened my stock sights with a sharpie

weagle
08-28-2012, 14:13
Nothing wrong with the stock sights. Glock goes with the economical polymer sights to keep the initial price point as low as possible. They are very functional and durable and work fine as is. Considering that many folks will change the sights, it doesn't make sense to put more expensive sights on and charge more for something that many people will replace anyway.

As Butch pointed out (and he would know) I don't see the factory sights as a poor choice for competition. It's just that when folks start competing they change their gun to best suite their specific needs. That means you see a huge variety of sights (one of the easiest things to modify) on the competition guns.

If the top shooters had to shoot the factory sights, I'd bet a dollar to a doughnut the same folks would still be in the winner's circle.



As far as selling the gun with no sights, that is a no-go due to import regulations. The sights add points needed to qualify for import.

BTW, Glock night sights, which are the most popular factory option are just $57.20.

Apprentice
08-29-2012, 19:11
There is absolutely nothing wrong with Glock factory sights. Many, many GSSF competitors use them. Folks buy aftermarket sights to tailor their Glock to their vision needs. Some like plain black sights. Many cannot shoot with plain black sights. Some seek a slight competitive advantage by using fiber optic sights. Some fit their Glocks with 2-dot or 3-dot night sights. There is no magic set of sights. Everyone's eyes and needs differ.

I change every set of factory sights out within 24 hours. I primarily use Warren Sevigny sets, Trijicon HDs, and lately 10-8 front sights. I'm an aftermarket sight whore. And that said, most of the best off hand precision groups at 25 yards I've seen fired have been with the factory plastic fixed sights.

They may not hold up to heavy tactical training with hundreds of reps of using the rear sight to rack the slide etc. But for the average gun owner target shooting, they really aren't as bad as their reputation.

Locojmc
08-29-2012, 20:51
Yup, the sights don't make the gun more accurate!

The differing guns used there over the years have had a bunch of different sights....Factory polymer, three dot night sights, Warrens, and last year, the Ameriglo fiber optic....and they all worked, but the plain black Warren sights were hard to see well against the black hit zone on the steel D-1 targets, ya really have to concentrate on staying focused on the front sight.

My least favorite? The three dot night sights....just never liked three dot sights.

Here are the sights on the G38 I carry, they're steel with a night sight on the front, but they give a sight picture very similar to certain polymer sights that I like a lot. :)
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Glock%20pics/DSC01169-1.jpg
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/0603/ButchG17/Glock%20sights/DSC00792.jpg

Very cool, this is the same set up I use on my G34

cowboy1964
08-30-2012, 14:52
I do ok with the stock sights, I just prefer metal and night sights. I use 3-dot simply for consistency with all my pistols.

pistolcompetitor
08-31-2012, 19:46
Quick answer to the subject OP's question: They don't. I committed to shooting stock 2 years ago and I'm doing OK with my Gen4 G17. Starting to get close to the below 100 score after a year and about 3 GSSF matches. Currently a SS for IDPA. For my carry/stock competition G19 I have the same sight setup as Butch (wish I could shoot as well, though).

Compared to stock sights, a thinner front or wider rear; or sights that give you a deeper window (taller front paired with a deep-notch rear or even a Brian Enos pyramid notch rear sight) means faster acquisition at the expense of precision. Whether or not the tradeoff helps or hurts you depends on the individual.

ithaca_deerslayer
08-31-2012, 19:55
There is absolutely nothing wrong with Glock factory sights. Many, many GSSF competitors use them. Folks buy aftermarket sights to tailor their Glock to their vision needs. Some like plain black sights. Many cannot shoot with plain black sights. Some seek a slight competitive advantage by using fiber optic sights. Some fit their Glocks with 2-dot or 3-dot night sights. There is no magic set of sights. Everyone's eyes and needs differ.

I agree.

I've kept my sights on my 17 and 26 stock. I don't seem to do too bad with them. But as a carry gun,I'm tempted to night sight the 26. For competition maybe I'll tru-glo the 17.

Or I'll just keep them stock:)

JonInWA
09-07-2012, 10:07
While my favorite sights for my Glocks are the Warren Tacticals, which I have on my G34 (with the back face of the front sight painted flourescent pink or green to aid in quick pick-up), I've also had very, very good results with the Glock sights-in my case , the Glock steel ones on my G17, G19 and G21. Ditto for the OEM Trijicon nightsights on my other G19.

I've had my two lowest IDPA scores with the G34 with the Warrens (in back-to-back monthly matches), but I've had my fastest GSSF scores with the G17 with the Glock steels-closely followed by the G19 with the OEM Trijicons...

The Glock sights are more than adequate, in my opinion. My thought is that accuracy is comprised primarily from 2 factors-triggerpull (75%) and sights (25%)-assuming that there are some decent baseline sights to start with (such as the Glocks, for example), and the shooter has decent sight acquisition and alignment.

Best, Jon

Butch
09-07-2012, 14:01
What makes Glock factory sights poor for competitive shooting?
Additude!


:)

lethal tupperwa
09-07-2012, 14:38
Additude!


:)

THE SHOOTER!:whistling:

If you want your factory sights to be on the "winning gun"

just let Butch shoot it.

Or any one of those guys with the * after their name on the GSSF results.

RonS
09-07-2012, 17:52
I did fine with my G22 with the factory sights, but on my G26 the fact that they don't seem to change the width of the front sight or rear notch made them useless to me, I could not see any light on either side of the front sight. My groups looked like a spiral galaxy viewed edge on, short top to bottom, wide side to side. I sprung for Trijicon HD night sights since the gun is now the official go to gun and could not be happier.

You could get by a lot cheaper and if your gun is a full size you could probably keep the stock sights and do fine, (although I don't remember my old G22 having the white line so close to the edge of the notch.)

JonInWA
09-08-2012, 06:29
I did fine with my G22 with the factory sights, but on my G26 the fact that they don't seem to change the width of the front sight or rear notch made them useless to me, I could not see any light on either side of the front sight. My groups looked like a spiral galaxy viewed edge on, short top to bottom, wide side to side. I sprung for Trijicon HD night sights since the gun is now the official go to gun and could not be happier.

You could get by a lot cheaper and if your gun is a full size you could probably keep the stock sights and do fine, (although I don't remember my old G22 having the white line so close to the edge of the notch.)

I believe that the newer OEM polymer sights (i.e., the ones with the screw-on front polymer sight) do have a bit more light bars when the front and rear sights are aligned, as the front sight appears to be a bit narrower.

Best, Jon

GlockinNJ
09-08-2012, 06:50
OP: Lots of very informed opinions here. My humble 2 cents: try the factory sights first.

I personally found the Glock "field goal" rear sights to be a little distracting as I forever try to keep my focus on the front sight. That's why I switched to Trijicon HD's which have black rear sights and a very bright front site. They also have "hidden" tritium vials for a 3 dot sight picture in low light. Not necessary for competition, but I also keep this G22 at my bedside, so it suited my needs.

http://t3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSgvFUYTvhbN1vlP7LNTjx8AVp442c4iQyFIzrezBiQrAV9Sg8k

But, the Trijicons are very expensive.

Try the Glock sights first. Shoot some GSSF and see how they feel to YOU. Also check out other guns at your LGS or your buddies guns and see how you like their sight pictures (even of they are 3 dot factory sights).

Good luck.

Comrade Bork
09-08-2012, 19:34
Stock Glock sights suck as target sights because they are not designed to be target sights!!!.

They are excellent as what they are designed to be, which is a close range, low light COMBAT sight.

If you want to shoot competition with a COMBAT gun, which the Glock unquestionably is, then you need to put target sights on it.

Simple as that.

My favorite combat & competition combination is either Heinie or Sevigny-Warren; Trijicon front, plain black rear.

Great for either carry or competition.