Night vision devices (NVDs) are game-changing pieces of kit. The ability to see in very low light situations is invaluable, but the military discovered that it is almost impossible for troops to use their weapon sights while wearing NVDs. This is when weapon-mounted lasers came into being. We’ve come a long way since the PEQ-2 and iron sights, and we are seeing a shift in doctrine regarding how we fight in the dark. Today I will briefly discuss weapon-mounted lasers and how to use/zero them. Part II will cover tactical employment on the modern battlefield.
Intro to Weapon-Mounted Lasers
The whole point of weapon-mounted lasers is to enable aiming through NVDs. The basic principle is to shoulder a weapon, place the laser dot/beam on the target, and fire. Most laser units come with two lasers; a visible red or green laser, and an infrared (IR) laser that is only visible…
Over the past few months I have made quite a few new friends in the firearms and firearms accessories business. One of them is Josh Sykes from Kinetic Concealment.
Now primarily Kinetic Concealment makes holsters, and we will definitely be reviewing some of those later this year. But they also offers some really nice accessories likes belts and sights and lasers. One of their lasers, their KC Mini-Green Dot Laser, is what we will looking at today.
Direct from the website, here is the description:
The Kinetic Concealment Mini-Green Dot Sight is the perfect complement to any handgun or AR that contains a front rail system. The Mini-Green Dot works with both full size and compact handguns and fits on any Mil-Spec rail system. The sight can be operated with the ambidextrous on/off push button switch or grip pressure switch (included).
Warranty: One Year and CR123 Lithium Battery is included.
As I was taking the unit out of the envelope, right off the bat I was impressed. It comes in a very nice padded black box that is sectioned for each part to include:
KC Green Laser unit
CR-123 lithium battery
Adhesive velcro tabs to attach pressure switch
Examining the Laser Unit itself the build is extremely sturdy. The battery installation is a very easy screw cap affair, unlike some other units that use clasp that you need a crowbar to get loose. I was also amazed at the weight of the unit, even with the battery installed, it was a whisper in my hand. It is also worth noting that the engineers built-in a picatinny rail on the bottom of the unit in the event you wanted to mount another accessory.
I decided to mount the unit on my Glock 21 for testing. Installation was a snap. Loosen the bottom allen screw with supplied wrench and find the sweet spot on your rail and tighten. If installing on a pistol, you will want to have the unit as far back as comfortable so you can access the on/off switch which sets high on the front of the trigger guard. The unit fit like a glove. Very tight and snug with ZERO play on the rail.
I found activation of the laser to be a very natural movement, a simple extension of my trigger finger, a click of a button and I am in business. Having good ergonomics and access to the activation switch is extremely important on lights and lasers on Self-Defense Weapons. Activation and Manipulation needs to be by FEEL, NOT SIGHT. Your eyes (and I mean all THREE Eyes, your two and the weapon) need to remain in front of you, scanning for threats, not on the weapon, fiddling with switches. Since the activation buttons are raised on both sides, FEELING and PRESSING them is a snap.
The KC-Mini has two modes of activation: constant (1 click) and intermittent or blinking (2 clicks). Without going too deep into the benefits of having a pulsating beam while you are scanning for threats, I will say it is best if you drill with both settings in bright daylight and darkness to see how you like them. It goes without saying, the human eye is naturally attracted to movement, thus the logic behind a pulsating beam. Combine this fact with the laser being GREEN, which studies have shown the human eye is more naturally drawn to the color GREEN (another reason most tritium front sights are GREEN), and it makes for a very visible targeting aid in most any lighting condition, including bright sunlight where the 5mw laser is visible at distances up to 100 yards.
Zeroing the unit was a snap also. Just follow the very clearly written provided instructions. I will tell you ahead of time the best way I have found is as long as your pistol is zeroed properly, to just place the dot where it “floats” right above your front sight dot at around 10 yards. Some folks like to set it a tad higher to allow for a longer shots, but I have found 10 yards is a good “medium” for a pistol shot.
Overall, this is an extremely well-built piece of kit. The Green laser is very bright in all lighting conditions, including bright sunlight, which is one of the reasons Law Enforcement and Military choose Green colored lasers over Red. I have heard people complain that green lasers drain batteries faster, but I did not have any problems with this unit and I ran it for about hour straight during drills. I also think this complaint is unfounded for the most part for civilians, since lasers are often not going to be activated for very long periods of time unlike with LE and Military applications.
So if you are in the market for a laser unit or an awesome holster, Contact Josh atKinetic Concealment. They are great bunch of folks who really know their business!
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