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Irish Cop’s comment on buying the new S&W Bodyguard with the laser makes me think that it might be time to talk about them again. I suspect Mr. Marlowe will have some insights too.

From the outset I was totally opposed to them largely because of the marketing premise that all you had to do was put the laser on the target and all problems went away. I still feel that way BUT perhaps I’m getting soft in my old age because I’m willing to- grudgingly- say they have a place.

One of the best uses was something I saw at the FBI Academy. Students who are having trouble get individual attention and one of the tools they use is a laser on the student’s gun. It is not aimed at the target or even visible to the shooter but the instructor can clearly see it and identify shooter errors.

They still aren’t a panacea but if we treat them like the tools they are and train with them they can help solve some problems. I’ve been able to work with quite a few including the S&W Bodyguard 380, several different rail mounted lasers or light/laser combinations and a number of Crimson Trace models for a variety of handguns.

To me the biggest issue is the switch and Crimson Trace has the easiest and I suspect they have a bulletproof patent or we’d see more grip mounted switches. The others generally are best operated with two hands. They really require some practice to operate quickly. Most have a flip switch that rides just forward of the trigger guard, so for me that is to use the forefinger of the weak hand as I complete the grip.

One thing we heard often was that the offender was encouraged to discontinue hostilities when he saw the little red dot on his chest. Perhaps we’ve got a kinder-gentler group of dirtbags now but somehow I don’t think so.

I’m curious though if anyone knows an agency that issues them routinely or any good anecdotes.
 

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Charlie Petty said:
One thing we heard often was that the offender was encouraged to discontinue hostilities when he saw the little red dot on his chest.
Well, maybe I'll lose my sheepdog card over this admission, but if I can convince a miscreant to adjust his perspective by putting a dot on his nose, I'm calling it good.

If it ain't working, a tenth of a second is a small price to pay to avoid all of the paperwork that will ensue.
 

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twice I have used the little red dot to change someones mind.

Once was in a building I manage. There were three, waiting at the bottom of the steps, I knew something was up as the hallway lights were suddenly out, and I had a good tenant waiting to call 911 on my signal. When the first one stepped out, he had a large knife, more of a cooking knife than a fighting knife, but they will kill you just the same.

I drew, which was my signal to have the tenant call 911, and I could hear calling. Two more stepped out and I announced that the police were on their way. The one with the knife came up two steps and I decided that was close enough, and put the dot on his chest. One of his partners saw that and said "oh poop!" and took off running, the other one was egging his buddy on. But he kept getting closer to the door and finally took off running. Finally, kid with the knife was alone and talking trash, when I flashed the laser into his eyes, That seemed to flip a switch and he looked down and saw the dot on his chest and dropped the knife and started to try and wipe the little red dot off his chest like it was doreto's crumbs....He was yelping and begging and crying and then he slipped on the steps he was trying to back down and when he did, I asked if he wanted me to shoot him in the chest or the crotch.

He just lost it then. I knew the cops were close from the sirens, and I just said, "piss your pants and I won't shoot you, otherwise, your buddies last saw you with the knife, and so did the neighbors, so if I shoot you, no one will care.... so piss your pants and I will walk away." all of a sudden, his pants got real dark and I said get up and go, the cops are almost here, and he walked to the door like he had a bowling ball in his BVD's. Right past his buddies and into the waiting arms of the police.

I have never had any problems in that building since, I have heard whispered, "Man, that dude carries a LASER!!!" like its a howitzer in my holster.

Second time was in a parking ramp, some hoodlums were following three younger girls trying to get to their car and every time they started to move the car full of punks would try to cut them off. I walked up and said "these young ladies are with me" and one of the punks started to get out of the car. He had a pipe in his hands and I just lit him up with the red dot. His eyes got huge and he dropped the pipe and dove back into the car screaming GO GO GO, Whether it was the red dot or the gun, his response was such that I felt real comfortable they were gone for good.
 

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Charlie, as I posted previously some of our patrol guys went out and purchased their own a few years back. It was kinda funny watching them chase that dot all over their target and finally snatch a shot off. Most of them compained bitterly that there must be "something wrong" with their laser, 'cause they shot better without one.

Our Narcs got all excited by them after going to one of their conferences. They came back, and with the access to training and equipment funds they have (yeah, yeah, I'm being bitchy...sorry!) they equipped all of their Glock 31's with the recoil guide laser systems, LaserMax I think was the brand. Anyway, I swear within 6 months, they were all broken. They never replaced them.

Now it is a well known axiom around my department at least that if you need a rock broke, give it to a narc. Must have something to do with all that testosterone that job attracts. Seems that LaserMax is still in business, and still offers the guide rod system, so I'm not judging those.

Now, I went out and bought one. WTF?

Well, I was sitting in my chair, trying out various draws and presentations with my S&W Model 49. I discovered real quick that certain angles and situations didn't lend themselves to acquiring ANY kind of sight picture. I know this is true of totally mobile shooters also, but seemed pronounced to me in the chair.

Then the trip to Academy Sports and a laser equipped S&W for $479. The more I thought about it, the more I saw it as an answer to SOME of my problems. I've owned the gun for 72 hours, sighted the laser in at 10 yards and fired 25 rounds. It carries well in my little man bag. I'm still working on activating the laser and cylinder release "automatically". I'll let you know how it works out for me.

As for lasers in general, yes, I think they can serve a purpose. But they won't turn an untrained shooter into an effective one.
 

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One tip to keep from chasing the dot - focus on the target and bring the laser dot to it. Don't watch the dot and try to move it on target.
 

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I have a laser on my "always" carry gun, an S&W 340Sc.

One thing I've found is that with the laser, I can practice "point shooting" . . . I focus on a target, close my eyes, and draw the little gun from my pocket, pointing it where I think the target is, just by feel. When I open my eyes, I see where the dot is.

The first few times, it was an illuminating experience (no pun intended.) I've since found out that it does reduce to practice during a live fire drill - at short distances, my point shooting has improved.
 

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Snake Sez: Trust physics always, chemistry usually, electricity never.

I have never seen any electrical device of whatever cost or complexity that didn't fail once in a while, from a 99c cent one-cell flashlight right up to...well, by coincidence, just today my Dad's two-year old Cadillac had a sudden, unexpected, unexplained complete battery failure. :(

I have vowed to NEVER trust electricity on any defensive weapon. :evil: Not a light, not a laser, and certainly not any sort of so-called "smart" technology. :evil: :evil: :evil:
 

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Snake45 said:
Snake Sez: Trust physics always, chemistry usually, electricity never.
That's some sage wisdom; and it's particularly applicable in my vocation.

I look at the laser as a useful accessory on a firearm.

My drill is: "In a fight, front sight".
 

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WaltGraham said:
Snake45 said:
Snake Sez: Trust physics always, chemistry usually, electricity never.
That's some sage wisdom; and it's particularly applicable in my vocation.

I look at the laser as a useful accessory on a firearm.

My drill is: "In a fight, front sight".
I agree, especially concerning ANY firearm that is to be used primarily for self defense, even a long gun. I don't have an AR, but if I did, I would probably have an optical sight, and would defninitely have co-witnessed iron sights.

My little BG38 still has a square notch rear and post front sight. I think most handgun laser set-ups leave the iron sights as a viable option.

Those little red (or green) lamps aren't a panacea for shot placement ills; I think they do offer options that many people with the proper mindset and training can take advantage of.

Oh, and another confession on my part. I was one of those guys who months ago panned the Ruger LCR on this board, pretty much based on the looks. I am proclaiming myself to have been small minded, short sighted and more that a little bigoted. MY S&W is half polymer, and while it conforms a little more to standard S&W asthetics, I appreciate it's innovative design more every day. People who have bought the LCR seem to love them.

Anyway, off the topic of lasers, but fits in generally with "whats new ain't always bad."
 

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Didn't see this post until taking a break from work and making breakfast this morning but because Charlie invited me in, I wanted to pass on a few things before I got back to something that will keep me away until sometime late tomorrow.

1) First, I need to tell all of you that I have a number of friends who work for companies that make these things. And make them for both handguns and long guns and for both military and non-military applications. Other than referencing the military ones for a specific reason below, I will not consider them here. And except for an example or two, I will not say much about the long gun models in this posting either.

2) I mention lasers in some of my lectures and do say positive things about them but I really hammer on the drawbacks at the same time. I will do so here as well. You should also know (and Charlie was not aware of this) but it seems that I will have an article on lasers appearing in a national magazine next year (the draft is completed and approved) where I will make some of these same arguments for they are the same things I have been saying in my classes for years.

3) I started working with lasers (for different reasons) in engineering school in the early 1970's. My first gun-mounted laser was a helium-neon device (glowing glass tube and all) that was fitted into the stock of a Mini-14 sometime in the early-mid 1980's. I found it fascinating but limited then and for all their advancements in the past 25 years, I still find them limited now (for non-military applications).

4) First, none of the reputable manufacturers will ever tell you that they are a replacement for conventional sighting systems. Instead, they are an alternative or a supplement. That's because they don't always work. And I am not implying that they are unreliable; for mechanically (electronically, I guess), the good ones almost always do funtion correctly. But batteries fail and, more commonly, there are times (way too many times) that you just can't see the dot.
Ambient lighting conditions and targeting surfaces greatly affect what one can "see" (and that is if the dot is where it belongs - more on that later) and, generally (and this is changing) the dot is red. Not only is red harder to discern (for a variety of technical reasons) than the green-colored ones finally making their way into the market but just like red front sights and in some cases, red dot sights, many of the male users of such devices (obviously the assumed largest group of such users at the moment) might have color "blindness" (I use the term loosely) in the area of the spectrum where "reds" are concerned.

5) For the average non-practiced shooter (better called a user for they don't really "shoot", they just sorta own the guns and "fire" them once and a while), I don't think that lasers help much at all. At least not in terms of speeding things up or, in some cases, even getting on the target at all.
From day one, we tell people to focus on the front sight and align it along two axis with the slightly-out-of-focus-rear sight as it is (now "they are") brought to bear on the generally-way-out-of-focus target. Now I have some issues with this concept of sighting in general but that's a discussion for another day. So for now, let's just say this is a correct technique and again, let's say we're looking at most "non" or unpracticed shooters. And let's put those shooters in a deadly force situation.
I firmly believe that they (and even many practiced shooters who have never been in such a life-or-death position) will look at the threat and not the front sight. (For the record, I think things are/can be different with practiced shooters but again that's outside the bounds of this discussion.)
In theory, most people will do something similar to what "Al Thompson" and "HankB" are doing when they practice. They look to the threat and then drive the gun to it.
This works for "Al Thompson" and "HankB": people who I assume do practice (or they wouldn't be contributing to this forum) and probably have done so more over the course of their lives than most and certainly more than the average non-practiced shooter who I believe makes up a pretty significant portion of the marketplace for these devices.
That's because in many cases, "Al Thompson" and "HankB" have practiced enough to effectively hit their targets under these same circumstances with guns if they had no sights on them at all. (Something else that is outside the time I have available to me today.)
But the average non-practiced shooter will look to that threat and when he or she drives the gun to it, their lack of successful, repetitive responses to targets on the range will, more likely than not, cause them to not be indexed on the threat as experienced by "Al Thompson" and "HankB" on the range.
Were the non-practiced (average) shooter, using conventional sights (or, better yet, something like one of my current favorites, an oversized big dot front sight) they could correct themselves once they realized their error.
Do to time restraints here today, I will overstate things a bit and say that many times, you cannot do that with a laser. If I am off-target with iron sights (or even some optical sights), I can move them where they belong because I can see them in order to do it. But if my "beam" has missed my adversary and there is no referencing dot for me to see (on them or anything else), I'm lost. And by the time, I wrench things around to hopefully "get" a dot, I've lost any time or any benefit that the sight might have provided.
And that's if I'm not dead by then.
And that's if the ambient light, my eyes, and the threat's garments allow me to see a "dot" in the first place if I can get it there.
Not good and one of the primary drawbacks to this concept.

6) I do agree with Charlie and others that as a teaching and diagnostic tool, lasers have a value. I also fully agree with Irish Cop that for people who cannot use the sights that come on the gun, they have a value. In law enforcing circles, people who use carryable bunkers (shields) with view ports are probably the most obvious group of people who could benefit from them in that regard. If you move into the realm of IR (non-visible light) lasers, there might be a handful of legitimate LE applications for them. But the laws governing them are a hassle and rightfully so (as are rules relating the power output limits for all types, which is something else that somewhat hampers performance). Finally, and I am just beginning to study this in depth, I think that there might (emphasis on "might") be some low light applications where there could (emphasis on "could") be some additional value to laser sighting but it is too early for me to say.

7) I apologize but I don't have time to get into the switching issues. They all have their shortcomings. I also don't have the time to talk about the severely reduced battery life in regard to the current crop of green lasers. Nor the theory of where any of these devices are best fitted to the gun. Looks like you'll have to wait until next year to hear my ramblings on all that as well as far more details about the stuff I was able to get to here before getting back to work this morning.

8 Hope this helps and I hope you can forgive my brevity and not dealing with all of the preceding posts in my usual detail. I do not mean to slight any of those contributors.

9) And not wanting to start a war here and not slighting those who believe such things or have been lucky enough to see a positive outcome in their own lives, I still don't think that anyone can count on (or should even consider) a laser sight alone as a deterrent to evil. Am I either adult enough or experienced enough to know that the sight of a gun can have a controlling effect on a situation or an individual? Yes, I know this happens. But there are too many "people" out there who know when they can be shot and many of them can tell if the person holding the gun has the personal wherewithal to shoot them (legally or not). In the real world, these sights do not rise above that level. They might on TV and they might if you're lucky enough to come across someone not committed to their goal at the time. But I'm afraid that touting them in this way is going to get someone killed and that person will not be the cause of the deadly force threat that actually required the production of the defensive firearm.

10) Finally, and this too will have to be discussed at another time (and in another thread for it is truly a separate topic), is the need to recognize that electronics in firearms and accessories are here to stay and that over time, they will become commonplace. Whether it is the lasers we are talking about here, powered red dots that are already used elsewhere or the scopes of the not too far away future [where (once they get image refresh rates a bit faster) they will basically be video tubes that will allow us to see in the dark and thru fog and haze by internally addressing the part of the spectrum we are concerned with at the time and will magnify things electronically rather than optically], electronic sights will become the de facto approach to positioning the gun on its target. And for all the failed attempts to get the public to embrace electronically fired weapons, there will come a time (I'll probably be long dead by then), when it is simply more cost effective to get rid of all the parts (in the gun and in some cases, within the cartridge) and fire these things in a manner unlike what we are used to today.
 

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Mr. Marlowe, I forgive your brevity. :mrgreen:

I search Amazon dot com every day, waiting patiently for your book(s). If you write a book on washing dishes, be assured I will buy it. :thumbsup: Not kidding. :)

into the stock of a Mini-14
Just out of curiosity, was that the laser Jeff Cooper tested about that time frame? IIRC, it was a Mini-14 with one of those lasers that strongly resembled a Mag-lite flashlight.

Cheers!
 

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Al Thompson said:
Mr. Marlowe, I forgive your brevity. :mrgreen:

I search Amazon dot com every day, waiting patiently for your book(s). If you write a book on washing dishes, be assured I will buy it. :thumbsup: Not kidding. :)

into the stock of a Mini-14
Just out of curiosity, was that the laser Jeff Cooper tested about that time frame? IIRC, it was a Mini-14 with one of those lasers that strongly resembled a Mag-lite flashlight.

Cheers!
When Laser Products decided to move into the business of (police and military) small arms-mounted laser lighting, I believe the first one to really make it out to people in something resembling production quantities was a revolver (a Colt revolver?) that was combined with a flashlight-like (say that ten times fast) unit. In mentioning that to people today, most would envision some sort of small boxlike underbarrel entity or, at worst, a cigar tube-diameter handheld flashlight-type device slung under the barrel. However, it was (as I remember it) more of the Maglite type flashlight kind-of-thing that you mention above.

The Mini-14 came next and was an amazingly sophisticated integral concept with a stock that contained the battery pack and an underbarrel lighting component that was fixed to the muzzle and front sight assembly. Today, it would be looked at as antiquated but I won't fault it for it was the first of its kind and having been part of, or responsible for, a couple of "firsts" myself, one can always cringe about certain aspects of them when you look back in time. But people should know that the increased firearm weight moved from that of the fast handling factory Mini to something more closely resembling a Buick of that period. And the laser "came on" as a function of the trigger! An interesting idea (even today for reasons that I don't have time to go into) in non-stressful applications on the range where a two stage-like trigger can be slowly and deliberately pulled through. But there were obvious drawbacks when the gun was used for its intended purpose in the field.

Unfortunately, I don't have much information about it. Not only was everyday picture taking far less common in those days but my friends and I always seemed to have an aversion to such things back then (although I did happen to recently stumble across a picture of someone's "hands" holding on to an AC556 with a smoldering wooden forend that was taken during some other adventure) so I'm afraid that I don't have any photos of the unit that I had. However, in quickly checking the web while taking a break from work here this evening, I found a couple of pictures of one that is at least similar to it (as best as I can remember). Here is a link to them: http://www.perfectunion.com/vb/showthread.php?t=50616

The images on that site are small and blurred but they do show that the underbarrel unit also resembles a backwards Maglite. More importantly, they show the level of sophistication that this "complete approach" had, even in those early days of such things. It is hard to tell from the pictures but I want to say that mine (also a Laser Products model) was a bit different but it was obviously related to what you see here. This kind of technology had to start somewhere and Matthews should be applauded for what these pictures reveal. Someday, if I can ever make it to one of Charley's annual events, I will tell you about my time with the one that I had for it was a real eye-opener for me and one that impacted my work within the industry on several occasions over the years.

In the notes included in my previous post to this thread, I purposely skipped any references to long gun applications but in some work I did about twenty years ago (some of which was an outgrowth of my still-earlier experiences with this gun) I kept trying to get people to consider (where legal) the idea of a scope/laser combo. I now see ads for the beginnings of civilian laser painting for hunting applications (again where it is legal) but I still think that the idea of putting a dot on the target (which is magnified thru the optics so that it can be seen; thereby allowing for low light applications in a way different than a lighted reticle), while at the same time the distance is calculated so that a proper amount of holdover can manually created (or so that the scope can build it in for you) makes a lot of sense to me. There is probably more than enough room for both approaches.

I have had the opportunity in the past three years to learn a bit about scopes with built in laser rangefinders and someday, such things will be commonplace. It's only a matter of time before they will automatically correct whatever it is they contain for aiming (or placing the shot on target) so that no holding over or manual dialing will be necessary. And while I would be happy with that, actually putting a (matched for the load and corrected for the distance) laser dot on the target (that would be visible through the scope) might make some people feel even better.

And from there, it is only a small jump to getting rid of the glass altogether and making the entire thing a self-contained and self-calculating video unit that will (as I mentioned the last time) be able to adapt to environmental conditions by allowing the user to decide what portions of the spectrum he or she deems necessary or advantageous.

All of this stuff had to start somewhere and that Mini was a huge part of starting up such commercial applications and an even larger part of my interest in them.

More later when I have the time but I also wanted to say thanks for the kind words.
 

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I've always thought that one of the very best points of the FATS system was the laser trace mode. This would record muzzle movement in relation to the target as soon as pressure existed on the trigger. This allowed us to demonstrate that the student WAS yanking the trigger, regardless of what they said. It also demonstrated their ability (or lack thereof) to keep a sight picture during the trigger stroke.

I guess you could do the same thing for a whole lot less money with a camcorder, a laser and, if necessary ductape. The camcorder would be necessary because of many of the factors noted by others and students refusal to believe their own lying eyes. I'm willing to accept learned commentary to the contrary on the last point.

We've really never gotten beyond playing with some T&E samples. Due to price, reasons cited by others, price, the working environment; which incluces fog and steam (the laser draws a real pretty line right back to you-even if it didn't make it to the target), price and service life, we just can't justify the concept.

While I expect Mr. Marlowe is correct about what may happen in the future, at least so far as the military is concerned, I'm not going to hold my breath over it. I also expect that while someone is either changing batteries or waiting for a reboot, an adversary is gonna walk up and beat them to death with a rock. The advances will also add to the training burden as the troops are going to have to be competent with the gee-wizz stuff and the old stuff for when Murphy makes his contribution to the situation. I'm aware of a few situations where GPS handhelds crashed and the troops had to go back to map, compass and terrain recognition.
 

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I also expect that while someone is either changing batteries or waiting for a reboot, an adversary is gonna walk up and beat them to death with a rock.
Me too. I remember how totally freaked out I was one night shift when, about halfway through, my Streamlight died because I had neglected to charge it.

I have been impressed with how battery life has been extended by LEDs and the new Aimpoints that now go thousands of hours on a battery and even moreso by ACOGs and tritium but the comment about a reboot resonates.

I've seen the cool stuff that lets a simple ground pounder see the world through his helmet visor and think of all the things that can go wrong. Maybe I'm just a dinosaur... :?
 

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This is an interesting thread. Some parts a little enlightening, some reinforcing. For better or worse, I'm firmly-entrenched in the 'Old-School' way of doing things. I learned to do all my math pre-calulators. Learned to judge distance without a laser-rangefinder and still reach for a book first instead of the one Big-Eye in front of me when researching.

That said, I've tried some of the new stuff. Red-dot sights, and, a friends' gun-mounted laser. On the Red-dots; Tried to be fair with this technology but, by the time I found one with a small enough MOA to be fairly accurate, the dot was too small to see either easily or quickly. The others subtended too much of the target and were useless for the kind of accuracy I want at much more than 15 yards. I found I could always shoot more accurately and quicker using standard sights.

Lasers; Well, I wish you guys alot of luck here. In daylight, unless you were very close to what you're shooting at, you won't, in all probability, pick up that little dot. In low-light/no-light situations there're actually, two dots. The one you project and, the one on the end of your gun. If you're facing multiple targets, you've given your position away to at least one of them. Batteries fail, especially when Murphy can get his rocks by them doing so. I also have an electronics background in the Air Force so, I won't even address how fragile they are in a combat environment.

Unless they're poked out, both my MkI eyeballs work fine.I'll trust them and not some gadget to hit my target.
 

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"William R. Moore"

I remember a friend of mine and I spending a day or two wringing out all of the options to one of FATS' competitors at the time that branching technology was being developed so that variable outcomes could more easily incorporated into the device's scenarios. However, it was its trace mode that you also mention (in the FATS machine) that seemed to fascinate us the most for certain aspects of firearms training.

Gerry's days in the Marine Corps became obvious as he engaged simple targets with amazing control over the trigger and the gun as a whole. This was perhaps the least "flashy" tool the machine offered but both of us decided that it was one of its best. It's multi-colored graph-like image showed muzzle movement (indicating both control of the weapon and sight placement) in relation to the target when the trigger was engaged in one color, the position of the muzzle when the "shot" was broken in another color, and the continued (follow-up) movement of the muzzle (and obviously the firearm as well) in relation to the target after the shot was taken in a third color.

You would have thought that we had died and had gone to Olympic Training Center Heaven! All that was needed was an on-screen heart monitor (which, I suppose if we had died, wouldn't have been necessary after all) and we would have been world class.

I think that the FBI also developed something like this in-house to help their people learn to shoot and I think they also developed a few other things including (I think, I am not sure - Charlie, you probably remember better than me - I'm getting old) a simple and cost effective camera related device like you mention.

"William R. Moore"/Charlie Petty/"Retmsgt."

I'll write to you more about this in the future but ultimately, electronic sights will have to include some sort of emergency/backup (generally short term) power supplies; something that I have always wondered about as it's not hard to do. Charlie, you know of one patented device of mine and my friend John's, where one of our first considerations was a backup battery.

And these things will probably have to include some sort of integral backup mechanical "sight" of some sort as well, which I think could be incorporated into the unit's housing. Again Charlie, that unrelated-to-this-discussion-but-still-sophisticated electronic invention of John's and mine, had a mechanical override in case the electronics failed. It allowed the device to perform its designed (life-affecting) task instead of otherwise being transformed into something resembling a hi-tech house-brick if something in its software or electronic hardware had stopped working.

For some of these aiming devices, back up circuitry could also be included. As could shielding against EMP-generating units that already exist to some degree in the field. But please remember that I am not talking about today or tomorrow for any of this stuff here but instead, somewhere down the road (yet I believe still somewhere within most of our lifetimes).

I agree with all of you that anything can "break", fail or mess up but looking at how amazingly reliable sophisticated consumer goods have become in the last twenty or thirty years (cars, cameras, cell phones, etc.), I don't see why non-commercial items of this sort can't be constructed to survive within their harsher environments. Isn't that the type of thing we Americans are supposed to (still) be good at?

And no offense "Retmsgt." (I don't know you but in reading many of your posts since I have come to this forum, I believe that you are obviously a thoughtful and experienced man) but while I agree with you that electronics can be fragile in a combat environment, having lived in three locations where air traffic was a way of life, planes don't routinely fall from the sky (in large numbers anyway). And as much of what we put in the air today is more electronic than electromechanical (and certainly more electronic than mechanical), I would think that hardening things like the sighting devices we are talking about here is not impossible.

"Retmsgt." (and "William R. Moore"/Charlie Petty)
I do agree with your "old school" viewpoint (as my decades of collecting things will attest) and I will never accept that technology can replace skills learned thru good training. Additionally, there is always the very valid concern that devices intended to aid and advance an individual can become more sophisticated than the user they are designed to help. But I think that some of this stuff can make people better at their jobs and I do believe that they can be made bullet-proof enough to be used in the fields of battle (police and military) where they can do the most good. For we have to look at helping the average soldier and the average officer who thru lack of training, lack of initiative, or lack of potential, will never reach the level of life-saving performance we would hope for without tools perhaps such as these.

(PS "William R. Moore" /"Retmsgt.": You are both right about the laser positioning drawbacks. The examples you mention are not the only ones, but they are ones that point out another advantage to the IR devices. But in terms of day-to-day law enforcing, I don't think that's going to happen anytime soon. More on that later too.)

Sorry I don't have more time right now but dinner's over and I have to get back to work.
 

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"I've seen the cool stuff that lets a simple ground pounder see the world through his helmet visor and think of all the things that can go wrong. Maybe I'm just a dinosaur..."--CeePee
You're no dinosaur. Remember, dinosaurs are dead. :p
 

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shep854 said:
"I've seen the cool stuff that lets a simple ground pounder see the world through his helmet visor and think of all the things that can go wrong. Maybe I'm just a dinosaur..."--CeePee
You're no dinosaur. Remember, dinosaurs are dead. :p
"shep854":

In the short time I have been a small part of this forum, I have come to respect your firearms knowledge and experience. But I am afraid that you are mistaken here. Following is photo of one of Charlie's contemporaries.

[attachment=0:19qyhfzr]Charlie's Contemporary.jpg[/attachment:19qyhfzr]
Sorry Charlie, but in taking a break here this evening, I just couldn't pass that up.

Mainly because I believe as "shep854" does, that you are far from dead. While you might be set in your ways (aren't we all) you are still active in all this stuff and still in possession of the childlike sense of wonder that we all have about it. Like many of the people I have "seen" in my limited time here, you don't live in the past but you use it to keep to your brain alive and to keep looking forward. We have both aged in the twenty some years I have known you but you haven't really stood still and for the way everybody jumps in here, it looks like you haven't slowed down too much either. Hope things are good with you. Your friend "Philip".
 

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One of the other drawbacks of the lasers is that they don't help you ID the subject as friend/foe. There's some really nice thermal sights around these days, but they've got the same issues. A glowing blob is a glowing blob. That's not really helpful unless you're in an environment where everyone outside the perimeter or in a given direction is hostile. However, both prices and size have come way down. Our latest are about the same size as a normal scope.

Widgets going wrong: how disasterous that can be depends upon the depth of training. Back in 2003 I spent some time as a bad guy in force on force evaluations. "Taking out" the gee wizz stuff was occasionally highly entertaining.
 
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