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Old 08-11-2020, 07:48 AM   #1
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Joined: May 2004
From: Central Arkansas

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Dryfire with laser cartridge

Anyone use any of the in-chamber laser cartridges for practice purposes? I had a simple setup (I think made by daisy of all things) in the late 80's for revolver use that had its own receiver, but the new ones use the camera on your phone, ipod, etc, to observe, record & measure hits.

I stumbled across a review of the G-Sight version a few days ago and it looks intriguing. It uses a chamber-inserted cartridge like many do, but what looks neat about it is the app itself. It comes with a basic ten-shot program, but has a couple $5 add-ons that look especially useful, including one with a shot-timer function.


This is the review I happened on - he starts with the G-Sight at around 6:00 or so in the video:
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Old 08-11-2020, 08:09 AM   #2
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Joined: Jul 2019

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unless you are using a double action, don't you have to cycle the slide after each shot?

it seems intriguing, but I'd want to play with one before I bought it...
Old 08-11-2020, 08:21 AM   #3
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Joined: May 2004
From: Central Arkansas

Posts: 5,133
Yes. With a glock, M&P, 1911, etc, you'd have to cycle it to reset the trigger after each shot. They make it without a rim specifically for that reason; so the extractor won't pull it out when manually cycling the slide.

With a DA gun, you wouldn't have to. I'm thinking it might be decent for use with the few DA 9mm's I have for 'from the holster' practice. I do have an airsoft glock that helps with that, but never could get it reliable for shot-timer use. Even with a specific airsoft shot timer app, it's still hit & miss.

One thing that's a disappointment is since the laser cartridge is longer OAL than a normal 9mm round, it probably won't work in my 9mm revolver; looks like it'll be too long to allow cylinder rotation.
Old 08-20-2020, 09:03 AM   #4
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Joined: May 2004
From: Central Arkansas

Posts: 5,133
I went ahead and ordered the G-Sight setup and used it for the first time last night, and am very happy with it. The paid 'shot-timer' add-on is well worth the $4.99 each imo. Quite honestly, imo the shot timer function alone is worth the entire cost of the entire setup, which is mostly just the $59 laser cartridge.

Using a DA gun let me run uninterrupted, without having to rack the slide for every shot the way a glock or M&P would require, and that was handy.

Only downfall to it that I've found so far is that the camera (phone, ipod, whatever) needs to be fairly close to the target to fill the screen, even zoomed in. I was using a 5"x7" target at 16 feet which is as far as I can easily get in our storm cellar, and even with the camera zoomed all the way in, at that distance the target filled less than a quarter of the screen. (I tried it with an iPhone 6 and an old iPod both, with similar results.) The obvious easy solution would be to move the camera closer or use a bigger target. But since the camera is also where you activate the app, I prefer having it back where I am; and using a larger target kind of detracts from what I'm trying to use it for. Next time I mess with it I'll maybe grab a couple screenshots, but didn't last night. It's just a minor thing, as the app does work fine as long as I zoom in as much as I can, so it's not really a problem, more of a nitpick. If I mess with it again tonight, I'll try to remember to get some screenshots.

There was one disappointment that is completely understandable and wasn't completely unexpected, and that is that while the laser cartridge works fine in the three normal 9mm semiauto guns I've tried it in, it's slightly too long to use in the 9mm revolver. The 986 has an intentionally short cylinder to reduce weight (making up the difference with an extra long barrel extension & forcing cone), and the front of the laser cartridge sticks out slightly past the end of the cylinder and so can't rotate into firing position. If the gun had a normal-length cylinder, it would work fine; so no fault of G-Sight as far as I'm concerned.

All in all, it's absolutely worth the money imo. I don't know yet how long the batteries in the little laser unit will last, but it did come with a spare set so I won't be completely dead in the water when they do die. I do plan to look into other calibers they offer laser cartridges for - I'd love to have them in .38spl and .45Colt in addition to the 9mm. The .45Colt version would allow similar practice as for the 9mm revolver, since I have a similar snubnose in .45Colt; plus would allow use with the normal full-size .45 revolvers as well. And having one in .38spl just seems like a no-brainer good idea. For that matter, there's no reason you couldn't use any brand of laser cartridge; the only drawback is that you have to be sure it's one that's activated by the firing pin. A lot of them are constant-on that are intended for bore-sighting and wouldn't be much good for this application.

Anyway, VERY happy with the G-Sight setup. It lets me play (I mean train; yeah, that's what I mean...) without burning up ammo that I'd have to either load or purchase in order to replenish. It lets me use the actual guns I'm wanting to use, which is a huge thing imo. A couple years ago I bought an airsoft G19 and loaded an airsoft shot timer app on my phone to allow similar timed practice without actual ammo use. With this laser approach, there's no CO2 to mess with and no plastic BB's scattered around afterward. It's much better and as long as the laser cartridge doesn't crap out, I expect I'll use it a lot.

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