Tritium and laser sights
Based on the feedback from non-professional readers of our review of the XS Sight Systems Big Dot Tritium Express Set in the August 2008 issue of ÆGIS, it is clear that many non-professionals do not understand the function of tritium sights and laser sights on handguns, somehow thinking that they will be of help during the few seconds duration of a gun fight. In fact, tritium sights and laser sights on handguns should be thought of more as offensive devices, not defensive devices.
If you are moving around in the dark trying to locate your enemy and get a bead on him, these will certainly help you, particularly for the first shot. Some, however, note that while you are circling around in the dark trying to draw a bead on your opponent, he is doing exactly the same, and if he gets behind you and sees the telltale glow of the tritium sight, you are toast. If you are in a secure position, and your opponent is exposed, laser sights will be of great help. Plus, it really attracts your attention if you happen to look down and notice several of them dancing around over your heart!
However, if something happens and you have to draw your gun and start firing, you will never see the tritium sight – you likely won’t see the front sight at all – and never have time to use the laser.
While there are a wide variety of valid reasons to have tritium sights and laser sights on a handgun, none of these come into play when you are drawing your gun and firing back.