Guys, here’s an unbiased review of the Shield RMS sight.
I used my own hard-earned money on this thing. Though, if Shield ever sees this review and wants to fix all of the issues I’ve seen and send me one free of charge, they merely need to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or if they want to send me millions of dollars, or whatever.
If they want to sue me for defamation, my email is email@example.com
I haven’t shaken it out like I’d like to because I just moved from the country (where I shot a lot) to a city (where apparently no one sees the capitalistic opportunity to have a good range) But I’ve put 86rds through it just to see how it shoots. I know that’s jack squat, but it’s a 30 min range session at an indoor range.
I’ll report back after 1000rds - or battery failure, whichever one comes first.
First, I’ve been looking at this since the Firearm Blog (I think?) reported on it some time back. They’ve long had polymer Micro sights, but this was (as far as I know) their first aluminum offering. As soon as I noticed it on their website, I ordered it straight from them.
The total cost, with shipping was £300.00 GBP
With an exchange rate of 1 USD = 0.76 GBP that put my USD cost to $394.95 USD
When I ordered, they said to expect a 3-4 week delay because of the high demand.
I ordered on June 24th.
I received it on July 28 at 3:15pm.
That’s 5 weeks. 36 days from the time of ordering to the time of delivery. I don’t care that it took longer than expected, but some of you need to plan for this when you order.
The sight I got was marked as manufactured in July 2017, so it looks like they’re simply manufacturing as fast as they can to keep up with demand.
When it arrived I expected a box. But it came in an envelope. Some pamphlets were included that showed their product line. And a velcro backed patch (which came out upside down, so I literally thought it was just a piece of velcro at first)
The Glock MOS plate came in a little plastic bag with it’s wrenches and mounting screws in the package.
The sight itself came in a small box. Inside the box were the instructions, a couple of stickers, and a sight with it’s appropriate wrenches in cut foam.
Maybe they’ve never heard from Apple that packaging and first impressions matters almost as much as the product itself? Or maybe they’re cutting their costs on shipping so that they can offer a top end sight for an affordable price. Time will tell.
I love the look of the sight. When I opened up the box and pulled it out, it looked cool. No, I didn’t buy this sight to look cool, but I also don’t want to spend this much money and look like a clown. The finish on it almost perfectly matches that of my brand new Glock slide. I saw no machining marks, and I’m really impressed with the shape and structure of the sight.
Also, it’s small. Like tiny. And light (.6oz!) I used an Insight MRDS on my Glock 17, and it always struck me as “big”. But dude, this Shield looks like it was made for my G19 slide. It’s a great size, and when I took it out and held it, I realized that all of the marketing pictures told the right story. It was, as I looked at it, exactly what I thought it’d look like.
The housing or body of the sight has a rear sight designed in it. I like that idea: it gives a channel through which to view the front sight. And while I like the idea, I don’t like the execution of the idea.
Every pistoleer knows that you use the top edge of the rear and front sights for accuracy. But the housing of this sight obscures the top edge of the factory rear sight, making accuracy with the irons a bugger. I may hate it so much that I file down the housing to be even with my factory rears. This is a design flaw that needs to be fixed in their next iteration.
The plate struck me as slim. I’ve messed with all of the mounting plates that come with the Glock MOS, and this one struck me as better. One of the reasons I got this sight is because of Garand Thumb’s youtube review of the Glock MOS pistol wherein he noted that he had to re-tighten the Trijicon RMR’s screws every 500rds because the plate doesn’t allow the screws to grip enough “meat”. I don’t want to have to do that every 500rds. I may be dense, but when I put a sight on, I want it to stay there until I want to take it off.
The mounting plate that comes with this shield sight offers to fix that problem. It comes with studs that are over 1/4” long. It has been machined down very thin to allow the sight to co-align with the factory sights. It locks in to the Glock socket like a glove, and the sight simply does not move on the plate that I can tell. The mounting plate is steel with a coating that perfectly matches the Glock slide.
I used a generous amount of blue loc-tite when installing, and I have high hopes that it’ll all stay. We’ll see.
One thing I noticed: there were no mounting directions for the Glock plate. No torque specs. No pictures. Nothing to tell me which set of the two sets of screws went where. Now, realize, I'm smarter than average. In fact, I'm a genius (not certified, and only in my mind) so I was able to get it together. still, those Brits must think we're pretty smart because they didn't give any mounting directions.
I mean, I would probably think you were smart if you'd helped me rid the world of Nazis, so I'll give them a pass on this one.
The lens is plastic. But it’s remarkably clear. You know the blue you see in the T1? And how they were supposed to fix it (but didn’t all the way) with the T2? And the blue you see in the Trijicon MRO, and even the RMR? And how we’re all supposed to pretend that it isn’t really blue and it doesn’t bother us?
Well, this thing may not have a glass lens, but we don’t have the headache of the blue staring us in the face.
Finally. I’ve said it. I don’t like blue lenses. And now I don’t have to pretend anymore. No more lies - I’m free at last!
Here it is next to my MRO
It’s obviously a philosophy choice that the company made - and I like it. They could do high quality glass, put an anti-reflective coating on it, and pretend that the blue tint doesn’t annoy us, or they could just put a crystal clear polymer lens in it (also polymer withstands recoil well). They chose clarity, and I can respect that.
Now, I’m sure that it’s easier to scratch or etch or deform that plastic, but as a CCW gun, I’m not too worried about it. Maybe I should be. School me if so. I can take it… really I can.
Here’s a video produced by the company that teaches you how to clean the polymer lens: https://youtu.be/smNQvgOLzXc
I don’t know how the sight works under nods because I just sold my nods - literally just the day before I received this. Stupid me. I should have kept them 1 more day just to test. I would imagine it would be a good crisp dot, but literally have no way to know. Sorry.
One thing that may be exacerbated with nods, is the spill from the LED on the “steps” of the internal ramp of the light. It’s hard to explain, but with my naked eyes, even in the daylight, I can see excess spill on the sight. Even with black anodizing on it, which I think would mitigate it some, it’s there. Obviously that doesn’t matter when shooting in the daylight, but under nods I wonder what effect if any it produces.
From the Front
Because of the anti-glare and blue tint being absent from the lens, when I dry fire at myself in the mirror (don’t laugh, you know you do it too) I can easily see the origin of the red dot. The led is easily seen. It’s not like you can see the dot on the lens, it’s just that you can see the origin - the led in it’s original spot. Picture.
I love looking through the sight. As with any micro RDS it takes some getting used to - especially if muscle memory has trained you to look down the sights. With a micro you essentially have to hover just above the sights. It’s not much, but it takes some getting used to. This is true of any Micro on a pistol not just this one.
The dot is bright. It is more than useful in broad daylight. I tried it against my pistol mounted light in the absolute dark, and it showed up just fine. The pictures obviously don’t do it justice. I don’t know how to set exposure and white balance and whatnot to get a picture that reflects reality, but it looks like every Aimpoint I’ve ever looked through. If you’ve shot an Aimpoint you will feel right at home with this sight.
The dot brightness is not manually adjustable. For some that’s a turn off. For me it’s great. Simplicity means fewer moving parts. Fewer moving parts means less opportunity for something to break. I thin the dot brightness is just right for me. I cannot speak to those with astigmatisms, or need for very dim dots.
I have found that with Aimpoints I can adjust them down until the dot is extremely sharp. A perfect circle. The Shield does not allow this dimming feature, and the dot is more like an Aimpoint in one of the high settings. Slight bloom but not distracting.
I have found that if I focus on the dot, that it’s small and adequately sharp. I’ve found that when I focus on the target or the sights, that the red dot blooms some. This exact same phenomenon is present in every Aimpoint I’ve ever looked through too.
But here’s something: the dot is always on. Always. I have an EoTech. I have an Aimpoint. I have an MRO. I have other lighted reticles. Each one requires that I turn it on, either when I want to use it or when I want it on. But you know what this thing doesn’t have? A power button. Or toggle. Or switch. When the battery is in, it’s on. I love that idea in a CCW pistol - or any gun for that matter. Also, it’s less to break. If it’s off, either the battery is dead, or the sight is broken. We just eliminated the possibility that it could be the power switch. I like that.
I had to slightly modify my Incog holster to accept the sight, but it was nothing. A 5 minute Dremel job and we were up and running as smooth as butter. It does not affect in the slightest the concealability of the pistol in any mounting setup I’ve conceived to date.
I love the idea of changing the battery while the optic is mounted. You simply take a 2.5mm allen wrench, push it in from the right side, and the tray comes out. This allen wrench unlatches the lock and pushes the tray out. To keep the battery from falling on the ground, the gun should be upside down when doing this procedure. The battery tray is plastic, and if you put the battery in before installing the sight, you see that the battery is directly exposed to the top of the slide of the pistol. That causes me some pause: knowing that the battery compartment isn’t watertight and sealed. I suppose this is the way they achieve such a low bore-axis - enabling you to sight with factory sights. I’m ok with it, but others may not be. While the sight may be able to withstand water, I doubt the battery itself meets the same specs.
It has a reported battery life of 2-3 years. With no brightness adjustments (well, they say it auto-adjusts, but I’m skeptical) I have high hopes for this number as variables are taken out of the equation. We’ll see. I sharpied the date on the battery. When I have to change it, I’ll let you know.
I don’t know yet what it’s like to deal with the Shield company at length. I know other offerings give you the peace of mind to have a long history of customer service solutions. But with this thing, if you have problems, it’s not just an overnight delivery a couple of states away. You’re going to have to navigate time zones, and international shipping issues, and then talk to someone in Great Britain about your issues. That’s a big deal for us yanks, so that peace of mind and known-entity may keep you stateside for your micro RDS needs - and if so, I won't be offended.
Also, many of us (Americans) have become accustomed to unconditional lifetime warranties. The Shield does not have that. They specifically state that their warranty will only be good for 2 years only for the original purchaser, and only covers manufacturer’s flaws (faults in construction, materials and manufacturing). It does not cover normal wear, misuse, nor negligence.
I have a tough time with legal-eze, but it seems to be saying that they will not refund for the sight, only repair and send it back should a warranty issue arise.
That’s a turn-off.
If Shield is reading this (snowball’s chance, but hey) they need to know that to do business in the tactical market (for lack of a better term) they need to accept the fact that the modus operandi of the industry is an unconditional warranty. That’s just standard. They will never be able to compete in our markets unless they adopt the industry standard warranties.
But I’m taking the gamble so you don’t have to. Maybe (hopefully not) I’ll have an issue and will be able to provide you a report of the experience, but, I hope not.
Glock MOS mounting plate package
Co-witnessing with factory sights - no need for suppressor sights.
Constant On function
Reported battery life of 2-3 years
Ability to change battery while mounted
Exactly same width as Glock slide
All tools/screws/etc included
Good, bright daylight dot
Finish matches Glock slide
Very very clear lens (no blue tint)
Super light (.6 oz!!!)
Single brightness - no adjustability
Polymer not glass lens
No anti-glare/reflective coating on lens
Can see origin led from front
The body-sight is taller than a factory Glock rear sight
Bad mounting directions
Unknown reliability under high round count
Unknown customer service model (and shipping to Great Britain should issues arise)
Warranty (only 2 years)
Body housing rear sight height
I really like this sight right now. I reserve the right to see how it performs over the course of time and change my mind. Only thing to do now is shoot it. It’s slim, it’s compact, it’s obviously been thought through as a solution for the Glock MOS slides. It pairs well with the G19 and XC1 for a compact package for CCW. You’re taking a little chance on a company that’s not stateside, but I think for the savings on the sight, the benefits you have in the MOS plate package, and the money saved in not needing suppressor sights, it’s a good sight. Time will tell, however, how it holds up to use and abuse.