Sunday, December 1, 2013

Laserlyte..... Blurring the line between training and fun.

Disclosure:  Laserlyte sent this kit along for test and review.  That doesn't color my report, but weight it as you will.

Here's what get you in the kit:   A 'blue gun' training pistol with a trigger that aproximates a first gen Glock and about the size of a S&W M&P 9c, a sound activated laser insert, and an electronic laser target with a few options built in.

In use, it works thus:  The laser is inserted into the 'muzzle' of the blue gun. The trigger on the blue gun makes a reasonable click when squeezed.  The click causes the laser to flash for a fraction of a second.  If it happens to be pointed at the target at the moment the trigger breaks, the target shows you where you hit, and does some beepy lighty stuff to give positive feedback.

Breaking down some of the mechanics here, lets begin with the pistol. It's 'feel' would benefit from a beefier grip area, but that is easily remedied with a standard 'Glock Glove', or a chunk of bicycle inner tube.  Other than that, it gives a typical small auto pistol trigger and sights. Not really duplicating any one weapon, but I can comfortably relate it's feel to several carry pistols of the Carteach armory. It's sights are decent, but somewhat grey.  That said, I like the slight extra challenge involved in finding them on a dark background.  If I wanted them crisper, it would be a very simple touch up with a sight black pencil.

The shining point of the Blue Gun is it's trigger.  At first, I thought it long, creepy, and rough.... till I realized that it almost exactly matched almost every stock Glock and M&P I have ever fired. The click at the end of the pull is louder than a Glock striker fall, but not that of a DA auto with a hammer.  Importantly, it's quite sufficient to trigger the laser.

Speaking of the laser, this thing is just plain cool.  Coming with an expanding rubber collet to fit most pistols, it can be used in most of same.  Being sound activated, as long as the pistol makes a good 'click' when the trigger breaks, we are good to go.  I tried it a Ruger LCP, a Ruger P-85, a Taurus PT-908, and a S&W Snubby.  It worked perfectly with all of them, as it did in the Blue Gun.

Simply assemble the laser unit as instructed (ONE screw folks, by hand), insert it into the muzzle, give it a turn or so, and begin lasing.  The unit is adjustable for point of aim, but I didn't have to make an adjustment in anything I tried it in. It's designed to center in the bore, and does well at it.

The laser activation is short in time. Still long enough to make a streak if the weapon is being waved.  It's about perfect if being deliberately targeted.  

An important point to owners of this unit, and something mentioned in the instructions.....  when it's not being used, the little insulator should be placed back in the battery compartment. Nothing more than a tiny plastic disc, it breaks the battery connection.  Do this, or the batteries will be dead the next day.  At Castle Carteach, lacking any small critters or chilluns running free, I just unscrew the battery cover and lay it next to the unit.   Easy peasy.

The target:   Powered by three AAA batteries, its pretty simple.  The switch on the back has three positions.  Off, On, and RT.  RT stand for reaction time, and is a neat feature.  Set there, the unit will self activate randomly ever three to seven seconds, giving a beep and lighting the corners of the target for three seconds. The shooter has three seconds to land a hit on target, getting some flashies and such in celebration.

Set to 'on', it stays ready to register any hit, showing a bright spot on the target face where the laser struck.

Regarding it's use...... well, we are having a ball.  Yes, there is a serious training element.  If one disregards the fundamentals of sight/trigger/grip, one will miss.  Sounds familiar, doesn't it?  On the other hand, the near zero cost per shot, safety, and lack of noise make it easy to practice a LOT.  Enough that solid hits seem to be getting pretty darn easy, and more challenge is sought.  Here, that issue was solved by moving the (smallish) target into another room to double the distance, and also by moving to weak hand shooting.  Thus, the difficulty and challenge level was raised sufficiently to keep it entertaining.

Handing the blue training gun to a few newbie non-shooters here for Thanksgiving, one could instantly see the charm of the bygone practice of 'parlor guns'.  Not only was it fun, but clearly the tools are an excellent way to show new shooters some basics of safety and pistol handling.

Carteach's thoughts?   I like this kit.  Each part of it has some good points, and wrapped together make a fairly decent, quiet, and zero impact way to train in the home.  No, it's not going to replace live fire by any means.... but as an auxiliary training method it's a win.  I didn't know about the kit till LaserLyte asked for a review, but now that I have played with it, I absolutely want one of my own.  I can see it doubling my trigger time, even if only in laser training fashion.


Windy Wilson said...

I'm going to have to check this out. Based on your review, I want one, as it is illegal to discharge Airguns in the city where I live. A retirement to a place where I can shoot cans from my back porch and no one will care sure looks attractive.

A small typo. It's "waved", not "waived". You don't have to give up any right to practice with the Laserlyte. ;)

Carteach said...

Thank you Windy! I fixed that.