RDS on a G35 is a waste

The whole RDS on a pistol movement means nothing to me, and I'll explain why.

I'm of the belief that I either have to have them on all of my pistols, or none of my pistols. Since my employer says no RDS on our duty or off duty guns, they have made the decision for me. I'm ok with that. I'm sure it would be expensive putting them on all of my handguns and it would make my Glock 42 and 442 j frame look kinda funny.

You should definitely put one on the J frame. That would be hilarious.
Does Unity make a G34 Atom slide? I swear I thought they did but I don’t see anything bigger than G17 on the site. Am I crazy?
You might be able to find one, but they've been discontinued by Unity because there was not enough demand.

Matt, I get why short slides are the choice for RDS usage. I'm curious why Bill prefers the G34 for this role, having seen his "pickle" gun on social media.


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I run a G34 Gen 3 with an RMR. It affords me more velocity and less recoil due to the weight and gives me a reduction in shot to shot splits. I don't mess with my triggers and stuff so the factory (-) connector is also a welcome.
This might not be the best place to ask this question but it didn't seem to warrant posting a separate thread;

I was looking at my RDS-equipped P320 last night while dryfiring a bit and got to wondering - Why do we mount pistol optics on the rear of the slide, rather than in front of the ejection port...? Is it a matter of needing sufficient material to screw the optic down, is that just where people first thought to mount them and everyone just went along, or some other reason?
As an example, here's a G34 built by KE Arms for 3 Gun Stealth division with a forward-mounted Aimpoint;


Would there be any specific benefits to a forward-mounted optic like this? Disadvantages?
That all makes sense. I should clarify, I wasn't considering attempting a forward-mounted optic on a pistol any time soon, the question was more of an exercise in intellectual curiosity, wondering what the reasoning was for how we got to the current practice. Thanks for the replies!


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The biggest obstacle to mounting an optic on the front of the slide is just space to screw it down. The slide is thin in that area so there's not much room for screw thread engagement, and you really can't mill out a slot to secure the optic like you can on the rear.

Other disadvantages like holsters make sense but are not impossible to overcome.

I've heard the field of view comment before too, but it doesn't really make much difference in practice. The optic is already at arms length, moving it by a couple inches doesn't change the view significantly. It's easy enough to try this yourself, just tape or rubber-band an RMR on behind your front sight and do some dry practice.

There is an advantage though in aligning the dot. Moving the optic from very close or right over your wrist pivot point to several inches ahead makes the dot much easier to find. Again, nobody has to believe me, try it for yourself.


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For normal shooting on a square range, no, I don't move my wrists. But for more dynamic excercises, especially involving barriers and corners, sure, wrists bend and fractions of a second can seem like a long time. Don't get me wrong, I've been carrying an RMR equipped Glock for about 6 years now and use it pretty well. But that doesn't prevent me from seeing an advantage in a different mounting system.

Like I said, it's easy enough to try for yourself before dismissing the point. It's harder to explain in print than it is to see the difference first hand.


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Just food for thought, one other advantage to add - suppressed use and keeping the optic lens clean. Certain calibers (and high pressure ammo in most calibers) tends to blow enough fouling back out the barrel to cloud an optic lens quickly in the traditional rear mounted position. I've encountered this in 9mm +P+ loads, 357 Sig, and a lot of 45 Auto loads in certain setups; some leave the optic view pretty obstructed after only a magazine or so. That's a bummer, since red dot optics are so nice to use with suppressors.

I think, but have not verified, that having the optic located in front of the ejection port should minimize or eliminate that issue. A lot of pistol suppressors do spit some gas out of the booster, but a much smaller amount than what comes back out of the barrel.
There is no need to get defensive, I wasn't dismissing that it would give you an extra axis of control to allow you to find the dot quicker and I certainly don't care where you decide place the dot on your gun. I have just found that when people say that something like a DPP is faster than an RMR because of window size it is usually because they stop focusing on seeing the target and just bringing the optic in line between the eye they are choosing to use and the target and are reverting to old habits of trying to pick up the front sight as they extend out.

The MasterFire system and the many less elegant holsters we had to use in the past to allow a suppressed pistol to be holstered have given complete freedom to mount the dot in a number of different places. I think most people that have spent time actually shooting these setups would note it also introduces another source of wobble into the dot the further you get it out from mounting directly over your hands.

While they did certainly accomplish the goal of keeping the optic cleaner on the front lens, especially with some of the better sealed piston designs, you started getting more debris on the rear lens. This is very problematic because, while I can run drills at full speed with the front cap closed on my T-2, once I can't see the dot or the BUIS I am properly fucked and just slightly more advanced then point shooting.
The Scorpion has a 5 figure round count on it and I leave the Venom up there because it shows every bit on instability you have when holding the gun on target and enhances its purpose as a training aid. I have definitely put in my reps with forward mounted optics on handguns even though I do not own any of the T-1 attached to a JB Welded forward mount pic rail G17s that I have come across during the infancy of pistol mounted dots.


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I'm not sure why you thought I was getting defensive, just answering the question you asked. I don't recall saying anything about a DPP being faster than an RMR either? You seem to have gone out of your way to look for an argument where the was none; I'm really not interested in that. It appears from your last post that you already understood the point I was making, so I think we're clear.
I apologize if I am being argumentative, I find that most of the time people bring up something working on a square range but not in a gunfight, competition, a dynamic environment, etc they are ignoring that the fundamentals of using a handgun efficiently still apply no matter where you are, you just have less brain power to devote to them and people use that to hand wave bad techniques or a lack of subconscious proficiency.

If you have your dot further forwards than directly over your hands people have a tendency to start breaking their wrists to adjust the dot because it feels easier and more precise. This breaking of the wrists starts to compromise recoil management the more adjustment you make via the wrists versus presenting the gun properly out on target. This trade off is completely fine for shooting a target .22lr out to 200 yards for fun but it will noticeably hinder recoil management to the point where I don't teach people how to shoot with that pistol because it starts to ingrain bad habits very quickly when coupled with a very crisp target weight trigger. What may initially appear as an advantage (perceiving it as easier to adjust the dot or quickly bring it into the window) is actually hurting recoil control and developing a crutch to not focus on the target and develop the technique to have your natural point of aim be where you are focusing. It is because of those reasons that I would be very careful before recommending or touting the advantages of a forward mounted red dot on a serious use pistol.


Regular Member
While those are fair points, I think what you're talking about with a .22 target pistol is pretty different than with something like a Glock. Someone's potential to have bad habits does not negate a potential advantage for those without bad habits.

Also keep in mind the difference between pointing out a potential advantage, and recommending a complete system. If you want to have a productive discussion of something like this, you've got to be able to acknowledge individual points instead of just arguing against whatever position you've assumed the other person has. When someone like myself points out a potential advantage of something, don't assume that I'm saying everything about it is great and we should all use it.
Someone's potential to have bad habits does not negate a potential advantage for those without bad habits.
I am saying if you have a draw that comes out on target and a good sense of bringing the dot to where you are looking (i.e. not having bad habits) then you don't need to break your wrists to find the dot and the only advantage left is being able to make very fine adjustments which presents no real advantages until around 50 yards or so in my experience, which is why I have a forward mounted dot on a gun that I use for messing around at stupid ranges where that is actually an advantage and I suffer nothing in recoil control because it does not matter how quickly I can put a second round down range.

I am fully prepared to be wrong or back up any of my points as that is the only way we make progress but so far all you have said is how you feel it would work and what you found during rigging up a prototype and dry firing. I am only sharing what I have been able to actually put my hands on and put reps on.