September 2011

Down Range: September 2011

Some years ago, I sold two guns that I now regret selling. I used my Walther GX-1 22 LR for five years as a collegiate 3-position shooter at Texas A&M, competing all over the country and in Japan. As a working adult in New Jersey, I also shot it in a weeknight league in northern New Jersey and in a league that shot at West Point. Additionally, I had an LGR air rifle by the same manufacturer, using it to compete in

Todd Woodard

the NCAA championships, where I met the really good shooters.

One of the reasons I stopped shooting those guns many years later, and eventually sold my two favorites, was that I could no longer see the targets well enough to compete. I could see either the front sight sharply or the target clearly, but not both well at the same time.

The Sinclair/AOS MicroSight is a revolutionary optical product that allows iron-sight rifle shooters to see sharp images of the downrange target and the front sight simultaneously. Sinclair has incorporated the cutting-edge AOS (Apollo Optical Systems) technology into an exclusive flip-up MicroSight for the AR-15 and other rifles that use similar sights.

Bill Gravatt, president of Sinclair International and an avid competitive shooter, said, "This product has been described as game ‘changing,’ and I believe it. It solves a dilemma that has plagued riflemen for ages."

Invented by David Crandall, an engineer at the Idaho National Laboratory and a member of the U.S. Palma Team, the AOS MicroSight uses "phased zone plates" to create a focal point at a near-field object (such as the front sight) while at the same time focusing at infinity (the target).

Scopes, red-dot sights, and holographic sights overcome these difficulties as well, but the AOS MicroSight solves this problem for iron-sight users in a less expensive, more durable, yet lighter product.

"Though I was skeptical, I went out and tried this sight myself," said Gravatt. "I couldn’t believe the difference it made in my sight picture and in my group sizes. You can have all the right equipment everywhere else, but if you can’t see the target, you can’t perform."

The MicroSight installs between the sight body and the rear aperture. It is currently available in three different sight radii and works on Centra-Gehmann-RPA-Warner and similar sight sizes.

Additionally, it’s lightweight, costs less than competing optical solutions, requires no power, and most important—it extends the careers of shooters who want to continue to use iron sights as their eyes age. Like me.

You can see a video about the MicroSight on the website.

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