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Racking a slide using the optic


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Is it fine to rack the slide on a pistol (for say an unloaded/empty chamber start) by using the optic? Logic tells me that the force I impart with my hand is going to be much less than what the optic experiences everytime the gun cycles. But at the same time, it's a different kind of force.

Edited by Blackstone45
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Aaron Cowan, a firearms instructor at Sage Dynamics has a background in the military and various law enforcement agencies.  He has been instrumental in promoting red dots on pistols for duty use.  Aaron authored the first white paper on the subject and since its publication, it has been used in whole or in part by over 300 police departments world wide to justify the adoption of RDS sights for duty handguns.

He has also developed a following for his videos, available on Youtube, where he reviews and torture tests red dot optics.  Part of his torture testing involves repeated heavy blows to rack a pistol slide by beating the red dot against a large wooden post just to see if the optic can stand up to this type of abuse.  I have posted a link below to the review he did on the Trijicon SRO shortly after it was released.  I picked this video to post since the SRO is very popular as an optic of choice with competition shooters.  View the video, which I believe will answer the question you asked about using the optic to rack a pistol slide.  If you skip in the video to about 9:20 you will jump to the part about racking the slide with the optic...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UzjgOq60vFE

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Getting dirt from your hands on the optic or smearing whatever might be on it over the window to me is a larger concern. Shouldn't prevent one from being able to shoot unless it causes a refraction error and double dots. I rack the same way as with iron sighted guns but base of my thumb does touch the optic. 

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16 hours ago, YVK said:

Getting dirt from your hands on the optic or smearing whatever might be on it over the window to me is a larger concern. Shouldn't prevent one from being able to shoot unless it causes a refraction error and double dots. I rack the same way as with iron sighted guns but base of my thumb does touch the optic. 

 

 

I agree with this. When I first started shooting CO, I would rack off the optic (When shooting a G17). Since I switched over to a Shadow 2, I just use the cocking serrations on the front of the gun and have been successful.

 

I will say that if you have a solid mount and torqued screws, you should have an issue with racking off the optic, but I don't personally find it beneficial.

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18 hours ago, Blackstone45 said:

My optic is on an SP-01 Shadow 1, the front cocking serrations aren't very easy to use hence why I'm asking about racking the optic.

Mine is an SP01 and yes, racking off the optic is fine as long as you watch where your hands are going.

If your fingers are chubby little nuggets covered in grease... then yeah, nah.

sp01_co.jpg

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I've done it quite a bit and haven't had any issues yet, but I felt more ok after watching the Sage Dynamics videos and how far he's taken it. 

 

It is handy to have if you ever get a serious jam. I use range brass and occasionally get a stuck round and its handy to have the optic there to give it a good rack. 

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On 6/8/2022 at 10:55 AM, Blackstone45 said:

Is it fine to rack the slide on a pistol (for say an unloaded/empty chamber start) by using the optic? Logic tells me that the force I impart with my hand is going to be much less than what the optic experiences everytime the gun cycles. But at the same time, it's a different kind of force.

 

If it's not a cheap china optic, you're good to go....

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