So after many trials and tribulations, I finally found a gunsmith to knock the factory fixed rear sight out of my Springfield Armory XD Service model, at which point I used the Laserlyte RL tool to install the RSL, at which point I declared victory. I fiddled with the tiny allen wrenches that came with the sight and roughly adjusted what I figured to be centered at room distance, and put it away.
A month passed before I was able to get to my home range and see how the RSL would work, but I finally got there last night. I slapped in a 15-round magazine of 124grain Blazer FMJ, racked the slide, pointed the gun downrange and wiped my thumb across the button on the left rear of the sight to activate the laser, and took aim.
At 15 yards, the first bullet passed dead-center through the middle of the “X” in the blue B-34 target, and when I say dead-center, I mean mathematically in the absolute center of the target. I’m not that good of a shot on most days (I’m “pie plate” accurate on my best days), and so I dropped to low ready and admired it for a second before bringing the gun back up to re-engage and hey, wait a minute…
No red dot. The laser was off.
I shook my head, figuring I must have pressed it (twice?) to cut it off without noticing. I pressed the button with my thumb and…
No red dot.
At that point I grabbed the cap to the battery compartment and made sure it was tight (it was) and then hit the sight with my thumb again.
Red dot. And all was right with the world.
From that point on the RSL worked flawlessly, going on and off only when I told it to, and off course, throwing a nice red gleaming dot of death wherever I decided to point it. I had guessed right with my at-home adjustments and saw no need to to break out the floss-thin allen wrenches on the firing line. I shot through the remainder of the once box of ammo I brought for the XD, using the laser for the first 25 rounds and then firing the rest with the iron sights.
First impressions? Once I got past the weirdness of the initial not-going-on, I thought the laser itself worked quite well. It gave a solid point of aim in the low-light situations you would most likely want to employ it in, and the battery and laser modules on either side of the sight channel seemed to simply disappear as I came on-target, allying the one pre-range concern I had about a potential (though admittedly small) loss of field of view.
I also really like the Glockish site picture, which is a slight bit of an adjustment from the 3-dot systems I’ve almost always used on autoloaders.
The one and only problem I had was what I’d consider a simple familiarity issue. When the RSL was on, it was very difficult for me to focus down the sight channel onto the front sight as I should, and I found myself wanting to pick up my head just a little and rely entirely on the laser. I simply need to push through that, and will work on that in future range sessions. The primary goal of last night’s session with the RSL was just to get it on paper, and since I’d guesstimated properly, the rest was just playtime.
Next time, however, I’m going to put at least 100 rounds through it and see how well it holds zero, and see if the little power issue pops up again. If the power issue was simply a fluke (or operator error, always a strong possibility), then I think LaserLyte may have created a solid tool with the RSL.