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What's the best rear sight aperture size?

This is a discussion on What's the best rear sight aperture size? within the The M14 forums, part of the M14 M1A Forum category; I'm trying to figure out the best rear aperture size for my M1A Scout. I'm trying to come up with the best compromise for a ...


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Old March 6th, 2015, 03:15 PM   #1
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What's the best rear sight aperture size?

I'm trying to figure out the best rear aperture size for my M1A Scout. I'm trying to come up with the best compromise for a general defensive style rifle that will give me a bit of increased speed and low-light functionality. The one that came on the rifle isn't bad, but a bit more daylight might work better for my aging eyes. I've tried the SOCOM sight, but that is just too big. Has anyone found a good aperture size that they might recommend I drill my rear sight out to?

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Old March 6th, 2015, 04:46 PM   #2
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That will take some trial an experimenting, and I am not sure how hard the aperture is, but I would have another one on hand, just in case...

I think Art makes a rectangular aperture.

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Old March 6th, 2015, 05:42 PM   #3
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I suggest you look at http://www.shootingsight.com/ and give Art a call and talk with him.... well worth the time.

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Old March 6th, 2015, 05:47 PM   #4
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Thanks for the link. I had not heard of that style sight aperture before.

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Old March 6th, 2015, 05:59 PM   #5
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Since you have a Scout or short barreled rifle and you want quick target acquisition might think about what is called "ghost ring" type of rear aperture meaning that the opening is much larger than what you would normally find. Idea is that the aperture is seen but only a shadow type appearance but with practice can place accurate shots at relatively short distances, say 10-70yds. Some call this snap shooting and dangerous game hunters have used such a sight for many a year due to close encounters with the game(the kind of game that kills you.) Best way to find what suits you is to experiment with couple or so racks drilled out and tested to determine how much "ghost ring" works for you. Not for X ring work, but shouldering rifle quickly and putting front post on target will get a good hit at short range and even with not much daylight. Just a suggestion.

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Old March 6th, 2015, 06:16 PM   #6
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I found this out when hunting at low light conditions.

Edge of darkness I still prefer an open rear sight (other rifles, although never tried a HUGE peep). I have done clean hunting shots in winter lowering the aim to see the sights in the snow, then raising to lower chest. And yes still legal shooting hours but in the woods snowing, < 50 yds.

I think a good scope would do better low light than a small (NM) peep.

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Old March 6th, 2015, 06:43 PM   #7
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You will get a greater depth of field with a smaller aperture .
Talk to Art as mentioned above he is the expert.

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Old March 7th, 2015, 12:01 AM   #8
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In life, there is rarely a free lunch.

I think you have to decide what you want the rifle for.

As aperture gets smaller your depth of field improves and you can see sharper and aim more precisely. But as your aperture gets smaller it also lets in less light.

For a target rifle, guaranteed to be shooting in daytime, reasonably good chance you have good light, I recommend 042 or 047 to maximize sharpness.

For a defense rifle I don't know what the best is, but since there is a reasonable chance you'd need it at night or indoors, I'd be tempted to stick with the military sight which is 0.070.

Of the NM sights, you have 059, 052, then I make 047 and 042 and the rectangulars. So if you want to try and compromise between accuracy and low light, I'd at least go with the 059.

If the rectangular gives you better defensive perfornmance is a little unknown. By my logic, it will. You still get 059 worth of light, you get improved focus on the top edge of the sight post, and you get a wider field of view .... but I've never had anyone try it and report back to know if the theory holds water.

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Old March 7th, 2015, 06:24 AM   #9
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Interesting regarding the square aperture and have seen some with the square turned to look as though one corner at 12 o'clock and other at 6 o'clock. I would assume idea is to "square" up the sight picture with the post to insure accurate shot placement, but have always been under the impression that using a circle permits the eye to automatically seek the true center of the circle and you look through that to the post for sight picture, you don't actually look "at" the rear aperture. Idea being that the human eye has problem trying to focus on three objects at the same time and looking through the aperture, focusing on front sight primarily with alignment on target is preferred method.
I am going to have to try one of those square apertures or may just take one of my spare ones and make it square. I don't really care for scopes on these rifles, but no question they will give you more time to hunt in early morning or late evening hours. Have a Ruger NO. 3 with heavier, longer barrel than std. in 45/70Gov't with Leupold 2.5 scope w/ German Post reticle and will say that scope really collects a lot of light and the dark post makes for early and late hour hunting much easier and can use both eyes open to see target.

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Old March 7th, 2015, 06:34 PM   #10
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I have a couple of those rectangular apertures. When looking through them, and focusing on the front sight, they appear as a fuzzy oval. It's easy to center the front sight.

To get the desired benefit, the height of the rectangle is less than an equivalent sized round aperture. So, it makes modifying an existing aperture difficult.

The hope is to get more depth of field while letting in the same amount of light (instead of getting darker with a smaller aperture). It can work well. However, there are all kinds of vision problems that can make any type of sight not so good.

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Old May 21st, 2020, 03:29 PM   #11
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Peep size

When I was a kid I liked the standard peep , now I'm 66 and I find for me a larger peep ,a 64, works for me. I'm only talking about hunting. Center is still center, no matter what size the hole

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Old May 22nd, 2020, 02:20 PM   #12
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Sorry , I ment 74 , number drill

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Old May 25th, 2020, 05:54 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keewah54 View Post
When I was a kid I liked the standard peep , now I'm 66 and I find for me a larger peep ,a 64, works for me. I'm only talking about hunting. Center is still center, no matter what size the hole
Now that I am in my seventies, have to use a standard peep, cannot use match sights anymore.

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Old May 25th, 2020, 07:31 AM   #14
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When it comes to rear sight apertures, there is no such thing as a universal "best". The application and the shooter's eye sight both dictate what will work best for that one situation. Change either one and you will have a new "best".

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Old May 25th, 2020, 07:39 AM   #15
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The logic behind the rectangular aperture is that a peep helps you by improving focus. THe smaller the peep, the sharper the focus, however you lose light.

When you actually run the math, it turns out the peep helps you with up/down focus based on how tall the aperture is, and it helps with left/right focus based on how wide it is.

When you shoot a post front sight, it turns out your need for side/side focus is not that high. Because you have two vertical edges on the front sight, your brain can use symmetry to judge if the bull is centered, even if the sight is blurry. However for elevation, you only have one top horizontal edge on the sight post, so if your focus drifts due to old eyes, the top edge gets fuzzy and you start drifting your shots vertically.

The rectangle idea is that to keep the image from getting dim, I want to keep the open area constant. I want to make it small up/down to maximize focus on the top edge of the post, so as vertical dimension gets smaller, I need to make the opening wider to compensate, this sacrifices some of the clarity on the vertical edges of the front sight.

Net, to keep brightness constant, I have to rob some sideways focus to improve vertical focus. In actual testing with a shooting team, where I got groups, then rebuilt people's rifles to my aperture and got a second set of groups, this was demonstrated. On average, vertical dispersion of the groups improved by about 1/4 MOA, while the horizontal dispersion remained constant.

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