Monday, October 27, 2014

Palette's Product Review: Red Lion Precision Front Sight for Kel-Tec Sub-2000

Last month, I received some merchandise from Red Lion Precision for my Kel-Tec Sub-2000. As a review of all them  (front sight, muzzle compensator, rail system) would be too much for a single article, I've broken it up into a series. This article will be about the Red Lion Precision Front Sight with Picatinny rail ($77.00).

I'm going to lead with the bad news: 
In order to install this sight, you are going to have to destroy the stock Sub-2000 front sight. 

The instructions (which are clear and easy to follow) say so, plain as day. I know that there are websites out there which tell you this isn't necessary, but I don't see how this is possible, and here's why: 
Despite looking like a flimsy bit of polymer, the stock Sub-2000 front sight is attached really well to the barrel. It's actually far stronger than it looks. 
You see, I tried to remove the front sight non-destructively. I read that all I needed was a butane torch, and that if I heated the barrel near the sight, the Loctite bonding the sight to the barrel would release. Well, I tried that, and after several minutes it didn't release. Now, one of two things was clearly happening here:
  1. I was moving the torch too much, which is understandable since I didn't want to ruin the temper of the barrel with a constant application of flame to it. 
  2. The heat required to make the adhesive give just wasn't conducting through the barrel in the right amount. 
I'm going to go with option #2, because the metal did get hot enough to cause the plastic of the blade part of the front sight to melt and detach from the ring around the barrel part. 

With the sight already damaged, I said "To heck with it!" and took a Dremel tool to the rest of the plastic to get it off. Then I applied the remainder of the butane flame directly to the metal bushing that kept the sight anchored to the barrel. After several minutes of applied heat, it came off. After that, the installation was easy: 
  1. Place the muzzlecomp inside the sight;
  2. Tighten the screws slightly to keep muzzlecomp in place;
  3. Place the sight on the barrel the way you want it;
  4. Tighten everything up.
It is worth noting that you don't have to remove the bushing to install the RLP Front Sight; however, if you choose that option, you can't use a muzzle compensator. 

Considering that there's only one merchandise choice (adapter non-muzzlecomp) if you keep the bushing on, but three if you remove it (adapter muzzlecomp with teeth, adapter muzzlecomp plain face, and adapter non-muzzlecomp) if you do, I'm just going to assume that most folks who will go to the trouble to mount a precision metal front sight to their Sub-2000 are going to say "Heck, why not?" and get the muzzlecomp.

(The muzzle compensator will be the subject of my next review). 

And now for the good news:
I love everything else about this sight. 

While it isn't as immediately visible as the Kel-Tec fiber-optic blade, it makes up for that by being an absolute breeze to adjust. Here is the how they differ:

Original Sight
  1. Loosen the screw that the holds fiber-optic blade in place. 
  2. Wiggle the fiber-optic blade until it's roughly where you think you want it.
  3. Tighten the screw back up.
  4. See if the blade is actually where you need it to be.
  5. Repeat steps 1-4 as necessary.

Red Lion Precision Sight
  1. Place the sight tool over post (elevation) or in knob (windage).
  2. Click it the same number of times you'd adjust the elevation & windage on AR-15 iron sights.
There's a reason the word Precision is in the name.. 

And while I was impressed with how sturdy the Kel-Tec plastic sight was, this one is even more impressive:
  • It's machined and anodized from aircraft aluminum
  • The semicircular sight instead of full circle aids visibility
  • It locks into the Sub-2000 buttstock when folded, just like factory version
Best of all, the rail underneath the sight is ideal for mounting all sorts of things: flashlights, lasers, bipods... even a bayonet.

Yes, I mounted a Laserlyte Pistol Bayonet to my Sub-2000. I like bayonets.  Don't judge me.

My Rating:  A+

The only drawback the RLP front sight has is that it's pricy: $69.50 for the base unit plus $9 for the cheapest adapter. The version with a Picatinny rail costs an additional $7.50, and the fancier muzzlecomps run between $15 and $20, so you could easily drop $100 on this front sight assembly.

That said, replacing the plastic front sight with an easily-adjustable precision metal sight is arguably the best improvement you can make to your Kel-Tec Sub-2000. (For me, it's a toss-up between this and the Extended Cocking Handle made by Twisted Industries -- heck, get both!)

Obligatory FTC Disclaimer:  I received this product for free. I was not paid or otherwise compensated in return for giving it a good review. Also, your mom says you should call her more often. 

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