I caught up with Matt Rice, senior public relations manager of Bushnell recently, and asked him about mounting Bushnells on pistols. More importantly, we addressed the confusion over all the different footprints available.
GJS—In your experience does the footprint/adapter/slide cut situation seem slightly confusing to enthusiasts trying to mount an?
MR—Overall, I think the process of selecting, mounting and sighting in a red dot for most firearms owners is a fairly easy task. For those new gun owners or first-time users the process might seem a little more challenging. At Bushnell, we try to make the process as simplified as possible by providing you with the tools and instructions you’ll need when you buy the optics plus providing additional support through our website, Customer Service center and social media channels.
GJS—Do your optics come with adapters for mounting to most or all major handgun slides cut for mounting a red-dot or reflex sight?
MR—Depending on the type of red dot that you purchase, the associated mounting plate, adapter or riser is included with the optic. When specifically talking red dots that mount via a pistol slide cut versus a picatinny or weaver-style rail, our newest models, the RXS-100 and RXS-250 are configured on the Delta Point Pro footprint. This means that they will only be compatible with pistol manufacturers that offer that mounting plate. As pistol mounted red dots have grown in popularity, a large majority of firearms manufacturers now offer models that are shipped with multiple mounting plates (like the S&W M&P C.O.R.E). This essentially make the pistol optics ready, allowing the owner to correlate the right mounting plate with the red dot footprint(s) they own. We (Bushnell) typically always include an additional mounting method such as a riser that will allow the red dot to go on a pistol or rifle with accessory rails so you have multiple options for use.
GJS—Can you tell me how many adapters/plates that is, or slide profiles (and you may have them as accessories I just overlooked on the website. If so I apologize.)?
MR—At the current time, all of our pistol mountable red dots utilize the Delta Point Pro footprint or can be attached to the firearm through the use of a Weaver low-rise mount.
GJS—Any reason you don’t mill the optic with integral footprints/bases that just go into each of the manufacturer’s preferred cuts in the slide (yeah, that would be stupid expensive and tough on inventory, but I’m looking for a quote, sorry)?
MR—Essentially what has happened is the reverse. Footprints are largely set on the design specifications of the red dot. So, firearms manufactures, wanting to make their pistols compatible with the largest number of optics, offer mounting plates that fit into the precut slide. This provides a firm attachment point for the red dot, helping it stay secured under recoil and in several cases being able to co-witness with the pistols standard sights.
GJS—What are the most popular mounts/slide cuts out there?
MR—Popularity has changed over the years. Currently, there has been a growing interest in the micro red dots for smaller, compact pistols. But overall, I would say the offerings lean towards Docter, C-more, RMR, Jpoint, and Delta Point Pro in no particular order.
[You can read comments from other experts in the field here.]
—Guy J. Sagi has crafted the words and images that capture the spirit of the outdoor sports and beauty that surrounds them for magazines, websites and marketing materials for more than three decades.