Fixed Rear Iron Sight: Enhancing Accuracy and Stability

Shahzad Masood


Fixed rear iron sights are essential tools for many firearm enthusiasts. They provide reliability and accuracy that modern optics may sometimes need to improve. Fixed rear sights are ideal for both beginners and experienced shooters, so you can always rely on your firearm even if your advanced optics fail.

Designed with durability, many fixed rear iron sights are crafted from robust materials such as aircraft-grade aluminum. This not only makes them lightweight but also highly resistant to corrosion. Whether on the range or in the field, these sights are built to withstand harsh conditions and maintain their performance.

Another key feature of fixed rear sights is their adaptability. Some models offer multiple apertures, making them suitable for various shooting situations, from close-quarters combat to long-distance accuracy. This versatility allows shooters to quickly adjust their sightings without changing their sight entirely, ensuring they are always prepared for any scenario.

Design and Features

Fixed rear iron sights are crucial for precision and consistent aiming on AR-15 rifles. This section highlights the materials used and the types of notches and apertures available for these sights.

Materials and Construction

Fixed rear iron sights are typically made from high-quality materials like steel and aluminum. Steel is known for its durability and strength, which ensures long-lasting performance even under harsh conditions. Aluminum, on the other hand, is lighter and provides a good balance between weight and durability.

Manufacturers often use a mil-spec coating to protect the sights from corrosion and wear. This is important for maintaining the integrity of the sight over time. Polymer components are also sometimes used to reduce weight further, but they might not offer the same level of toughness as their metal counterparts.

The design must be rugged enough to handle recoil and other stresses from shooting. Preferably, the construction allows for easy installation on a standard Picatinny rail, simplifying the process for the user.

Notch and Aperture Types

The notch and aperture types greatly influence the shooting experience. Most fixed rear iron sights come with two main types of apertures: small and large. The small aperture is used for precision shooting at longer ranges, providing a narrower field of view but greater accuracy. The large aperture is ideal for close-quarters scenarios, offering a wider field of view for quicker target acquisition.

Some models that help you achieve precision like the A2 Rear Sight, offer advanced features such as dual apertures, allowing the shooter to switch between them depending on the situation. This flexibility is essential for adapting to different shooting conditions without changing the sight.

In terms of notches, many rear sights offer standard and DOA (Di-Optic Aperture) notches. Standard notches are simple and straightforward, while DOA notches provide an enhanced aiming experience by offering clearer sight pictures.

Understanding these design elements and features will help shooters make better-informed decisions when selecting the correct fixed rear iron sights for their AR-15 rifles.

Installation and Alignment

This section provides detailed instructions on mounting and adjusting a fixed rear iron sight on an AR-15 for optimal performance. Correct installation and precise alignment are key to enhancing shooting accuracy.

Proper mounting procedures of the rear sight

Mounting a fixed rear iron sight onto an AR-15 involves several steps. First, ensure the firearm is unloaded and safe to handle. Locate the Picatinny rail atop the rifle’s receiver. Position the sight at the back of the rail for optimal eye relief.

Align the sight’s base with the rail slots and ensure it sits flat. Insert the mounting screws through the sight and into the rail slots. Tighten each screw evenly, using a torque wrench if available, to avoid over-tightening and potential damage.

Test the sight’s stability by lightly tapping it. It should remain firmly in place without any movement.

Effective adjustment techniques for shooters

After mounting, adjust the fixed rear iron sight for windage and elevation. Windage, or horizontal alignment, is adjusted by turning the windage knob located on the side of the sight. Move the knob clockwise to shift the point of impact to the right and counterclockwise to the left.

For elevation, which adjusts vertical alignment, use the elevation knob typically situated at the rear or top of the sight. Turning the knob clockwise lowers the point of impact while counterclockwise raises it.

Focus on your target and ensure the front and rear sights align properly. Consistently check alignment and make slight adjustments as necessary for precision aiming.

Compatibility and Adaptation

Fixed rear iron sights are versatile and function well on various rifle platforms. They are compatible with numerous aftermarket upgrades, allowing for personalized setups.

Rifle Platforms

Fixed rear iron sights are designed for compatibility with multiple rifle platforms, such as the AR-15 and other semi-automatic rifles. On an AR-15, these sights offer durability and ease of use. They mount securely to the rifle’s accessory rail and provide consistent performance.

Aftermarket Upgrades and Modifications

Upgrading fixed rear iron sights is straightforward. Aftermarket options include adjustable sights, night sights, and flip-up designs. Adjustable sights allow for precision tuning to match shooting preferences and conditions. Night sights feature tritium inserts for better visibility in low light.

Installing these upgrades involves simple tools like screwdrivers and mounting screws. This ease of installation makes it accessible to most users. Shooters can improve accuracy and adaptability for different shooting scenarios by upgrading to higher-quality fixed sights.

Understanding the compatibility and available aftermarket options for fixed rear iron sights helps choose the right setup for various needs.

Fixed Rear Iron Sight Maintenance and Care

Regular maintenance of fixed rear iron sights ensures optimal performance and accuracy.

First, clean the sight using a soft brush to remove any dust or debris. Use a cloth with a small amount of gun oil to wipe down the metal parts.

Next, check for any signs of rust or wear. If rust is present, scrub gently with fine steel wool and apply a rust preventative.

Inspect the screws and mounting hardware to make sure they are tight.

Tools Needed:

  • Soft brush
  • Cloth
  • Gun oil
  • Fine steel wool

Every few months, reapply a thin layer of oil to protect the metal. Avoid putting too much oil, as it can attract dust and dirt.

Wipe the sight apertures to keep them clear and unobstructed.

Store the firearm in a dry, cool place.


  • Clean regularly
  • Check for rust
  • Tighten screws


  • Over-oil
  • Ignore signs of wear

Frequently Asked Questions About Fixed Rear Iron Sight

Fixed rear iron sights are essential for many shooters seeking precision and reliability. They are steady, durable, and do not require any deployments. This section addresses common questions regarding installation, adjustments, durability, comparisons with flip-up sights, co-witnessing capabilities, and maintenance.

What steps are needed to install a fixed rear iron sight on an AR15?

To install a fixed rear iron sight on an AR15, ensure you have the correct tools, like a screwdriver or Allen wrench. First, mount the sight onto the Picatinny rail, aligning it properly. Tighten the screws securely, but avoid over-tightening to prevent damage. Check for stability and ensure the sight is perfectly aligned with the front sight.

How can I adjust a fixed A2 rear sight for proper targeting?

Adjusting a fixed A2 rear sight involves two main adjustments: windage and elevation. Windage is controlled by turning the knob on the side to move the sight left or right. Elevation adjustments are made by rotating the front sight post to raise or lower the point of impact. Both adjustments should be done carefully and incrementally.

Is there a noticeable difference between a UTG and Midwest Industries fixed rear sight in terms of durability?

Yes, there are differences between UTG and Midwest Industries fixed rear sights in terms of durability. Midwest Industries sights are often known for their robust construction and higher quality materials. UTG sights are generally more affordable but might not withstand harsh conditions as well as their Midwest counterparts.

What are the pros and cons of using a fixed iron sight compared to flip-up sights for shooting?

Fixed iron sights provide instant readiness without needing deployment, making them reliable in high-stress situations. They are durable and less likely to break. However, they can obstruct the view through optics when not in use. Flip-up sights offer versatility and can be folded down when not needed, but they require deployment and might be less durable.

Can a fixed rear iron sight co-witness with a red dot sight on my firearm?

Yes, a fixed rear iron sight can co-witness with a red dot sight. Co-witnessing allows shooters to use both sights simultaneously. Proper alignment ensures that the iron sight serves as a backup if the red dot fails. This setup ensures continuous targeting options in various shooting scenarios.

What maintenance is required to ensure the longevity of a fixed rear iron sight?

Regular maintenance is key to ensuring the longevity of a fixed rear iron sight. Clean the sight regularly to remove dirt and debris. Check all screws and fittings to ensure they remain tight. Avoid exposure to harsh chemicals or environments that could cause rust or corrosion. Regular inspections will help keep the sight in optimal condition.

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