Nothing is free, and with all new technologies there are perceived issues and a learning curve. Because a smart phone is more difficult to use than a landline should not cause is to eschew the smart phone. Better to learn the new technology and take advantage of its benefits.
1). Problem Picking up the dot. This is an area where everyone over thinks it. There are entire articles devoted to this with so many varying proposed soultions many guys simply say its too much and dismiss the dot altogether.
So here is the simple way...too simple in fact. If your dot is co-witnessed to be on your front sight, and if you have trained countless times to acquire that front sight, what will you automatically begin to see when you present the pistol and catch the sights?
Wait for it....the dot of course. If you see the front sight, you will see the dot. Now what happens is that as your eye becomes accustomed to seeing that dot, it will always look for the dot and actually begin to ignore the irons.
That is when using the dot becomes faster than using the irons.
The problem is that Peter Pistolshooter picks up a red dot pistol...looks through the optic not knowing what to look for or what he is actually seeing, and gets confused. Then with all the experts giving him advice, and drops the entire idea.
Co-Witnessed sights will teach you to use the red dot. Eventually - everything takes effort - you will see the dot and ignore the irons. And that is that.
2). Concerns With Height Over Bore. Not a big deal as long as it is not exaggerated. Think of an M4 with that Aimpoint as close to the boreline as the weapon will allow. Nice, easy to use, and accurate. Now think of an old school AR-15 with the carry handle and a scope mounted atop that carry handle with a couple of inches more height over bore.
Is that weapon as easy to use? No its not. So height over bore is a factor. Generally speaking, the lower it is the better it is.
3). Iron Sights Obscuring the Dot. I honestly don't know how that is possible. The dot is not ON THE TARGET like a laser. The dot is projected on the screen you are looking through. So unless you have obtained extra height (even above the traditional suppressor cowitness sights of about .300 - .315), they will not be in your way.
The only thing I can think of is excessive attempts to use the irons in conjunction with the dot. Use one or the other and you will never have that issue.
4). Rain Gets On My Lens. Well, yes. It also gets on the Aimpoint Micros used by SWAT and Special Operations guys. What do they do? The same thing that you do when rain gets on your glasses. Wipe them off. And if you need to take a shot in a downpour, don’t worry…see the discussion on point shooting. It would not be any different with a set of iron sights only.
That said, there are products that are used to keep rain from “sticking” to glass such as Rain-X. They all work to a degree.
One gent was writing that on the range the rain pooled into the window of his RMR and it was an issue. Still, I suspect if I put a bad guy target for an emergency shot up close he would have made the shot with no loss of time…and if the shot required greater accuracy, there would be time to wipe the lens, just as there would normally be time to wipe off your eyeglasses.
There are a ghroup of guys using these that like to swim before they shoot people and they report no problems with using these methods.
But, please, wait until the next rain storm and test out your skills with each system…irons only and red dot and see what is possible, for yourself, with an open mind.
5). Problems With Batteries. So just because your smartphone may run out of juice is no reason to not use it. Same with this. If we agree that there is some maintenance involved, then changing out the batteries becomes a planned even, just like changing out your carry ammo once a year.
For those overly worried about this, there are the dual illuminated models (powered by tritium and fiber optics) which serve well. In fact there is an entire post tomorrow dedicated to using those.
The new Leupold Delta Point Pro has a “low battery” feature, and the Vortex Razor a six hour shutoff feature, as well and its battery can be changed out with your fingers without removing the red dot from the slide.
But regardless of all that, remember that your pistol has two sighting systems. If you detect that your dot has gone out due to a malfunction or a dead battery, simply make it an immediate action to shift immediately to the iron sights.