Limbsaver “Dead Center” Shotgun Sights

Limbsaver brand of Sims Vibration Laboratories offers a series of light-pipe type tubes designed to fit on the vent rib of your shotgun without any modification to your gun. It comes complete with six different bases to fit most varieties of ribs. You pick the spacer that fits your rib, glue it to the Dead Center sight base, and you are done. The Dead Center sight itself has an array of four rare earth magnets that make it stick like crazy to metallic ribs. If you want more assurance, you can further use the included strip of 3M "VHB" double-sized tape to secure it. I don't think you'll find that necessary except on plastic or carbon-fiber ribs.

As this bead is affixed against your preexisting bead, recoil tries to push it forward against what is already a positive stop. It works. The Dead Center comes in a standard version and also in a .078 inch “Micro Sight.” How do I like it? Well, as a generalization, I don't. In shooting, the bead is something that isn't in hard focus. We all use it, of course, but only in a soft-focus peripheral sense.

The importance of a bead invariably invokes the hoary “point a shotgun, aim a rifle” type of dialogue. This dialogue isn't strictly true, of course, but it is something the boys in the clubhouse like to preach to each other. Shotguns are aimed, just in a different way than rifles: the primary distinction being the movement of the target. With a little practice, a .22 rimfire does a number on scampering rabbits and a .223 cleans the clock of a running coyote. In both cases, the rifle shot requires sustained movement of the muzzle and lead. It should be no small wonder that to “draw a bead on” and to take aim have the same meaning.

Adding a front sight of this type has the tendency to lower the point of impact somewhat; not at all a bad thing as many shotguns do throw slightly high. The Limbsaver Dead Center sight, particularly in “micro” version is a good choice for turkey hunting, where a more precise and brighter bead has an advantage over many factory beads. Turkey hunting would be its most suitable application, for after the hunt your upland gun is quickly returned to regular configuration.

For skeet, sporting clays, or general hunting I personally find light pipes and glow-worm tubes quite worthless, just as I do center beads. Often, the well-meaning advice of using a “figure eight” for trap is equally misguided, for with a proper fitting gun center beads as well as aftermarket pipes are of more hindrance than benefit. This is no particular dig at the Dead Center sight specifically, as this entire class of product is of dubious benefit.

All that said, it is easy enough to try with no marring or change to the gun. A good idea for a quick, enhanced sight for turkey hunting, but not the direction I'd look to for anything else. We all tend to look at things differently though and the placebo effect sometimes works.



Copyright 2010 by Randy Wakeman. All Rights Reserved.





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