Featured Han Solo Blaster – ALG 6 Second Mount Review Dave Merrill August 10, 2015 Though I'd seen brief glimpses before, I didn't have the opportunity to actually handle or shoot a 6 Second Mount equipped Glock until this past year at SHOT Show. If you're not already familiar with it, it might look a little weird at first. After all, it's an Aimpoint Micro, an optic meant for a rifle, mounted to a Glock. It could be from a near-future science fiction movie (or from a long time ago in a galaxy far far away). Having had some experience in the competition arena though, I knew exactly the direction it was coming from. It's a race gun setup, but more durable and practical than what is typical. Limcat Custom Products Flashcat, from Issue #2 In and of itself, this isn't terribly surprising. The competition world has always run along the ragged, bleeding edge of technology. If something proves useful enough there, it often makes its way into the tactical world (though as a rule in a more rugged manner). Many call it this arrangement the ‘Han Solo Blaster.' So shall I. ALG 6 Second Mount The story of the development of the ALG 6 Second Mount has already been repeated everywhere else (and here too) so I won't go back over it (we first mentioned it back before Christmas 2013 if I recall correctly). If you do need to refresh on the back story, check out this link before reading on. So there I was, with an old Aimpoint Micro sans home, and a Glock 17 looking at me all bright eyed and bushy tailed…. I've been using and shooting the ALG 6 Second Mount for a little while now, and I've gone through some evolution of configurations. You'll see this in some of the photographs below. Design & Installation Currently, the most common electro-optical pistol mounting solution in our world is slide-riding. This is when you either have an dovetail adapter, or popular today, a slide specifically milled for your optic. Though they are getting much better, some setups have suffered in the past. Frame mounting avoids many of those potential issues and more, as we'll get into. Like everything else I've used from ALG, it appears to be durable and extremely well made. The 6 Second Mount slides right onto the front of your pistol when the slide is removed. The trigger pin is replaced with a locking one and a cross bolt goes through the slot on your accessory rail; stupid easy. There is a new Picatinny rail on the bottom for mounting lights/lasers, and a removable blast shield to keep your optic clear even when shooting the nasty stuff. The hardest part about installation was acquiring Purple Loctite, which ALG recommends. One of my friends suggested semi-jokingly that it was, “probably just red and blue mixed together.” Purple Loctite is low strength, and mostly protects against loosening from vibrations (Vibra-tite I have used for small screws, but it isn't officially endorsed by ALG). After driving and calling around town to no avail, I ended up purchasing it from Amazon. I'll save you the trouble here. The screws are pretty small, so using Blue Loctite or the Deadly Red aren't advisable if you ever want to take it apart. The 6 Second Mount is currently only advised for the Aimpoint Micro and fullsize third generation 9mm/40/357sig caliber Glocks. That hasn't stopped some people from experimenting though. I've seen them on 10mm Glocks, Gen 4 Glocks, compact frames, and I've even seen people use cheap Chinese Aimpoint knockoffs–all with assorted levels of success. All I can say at this point is that many setups can be cobbled together, but results may vary; long term reliability in non-standard setups has yet to be seen (I wonder about the recoil of 10mm loosening the mount, for example). Because the 6 Second Mount is so close to the slide, you have to either remove your rear sight to install it, or install it with the slide in place (the latter is not recommended). Sure, you could always install the rear sight after, but then you'd have to either take it or the mount off every time you wanted to field strip your pistol. Factory front sights will clear the mount during cycling, but don't bet on aftermarket even if it looks like it's good to go visually (I have a broken Trijicon HD sight to show for it–my fault, not the manufacturer's). On the Range The traditional thought about having a red dot sight (RDS) on a handgun is to use a set of tall suppressor sights to help you find the dot. This is rather common practice with slide-riding optics (such as a Trijicon RMR or Leupold DeltaPoint). Herein is where we come to two issues: You can't have backup sights with the 6 Second Mount, and that time-honored methodology is flawed to begin with. The accepted adage is that a dot is slower to initially acquire, but easier to keep. A goodly portion of the former is because people were doing just as described: finding sights, finding dot, finding target—if you're going to do all of that, why even bother with a RDS? RECOIL contributor Aaron Cowan of Sage Dynamics posted a video explaining it here. Here's the rub: You don't look for the irons first (and in this case it's impossible anyhow), you look at the target, simply present the pistol, and the dot will be right there. How many thousands of times have you indexed before? Same thing here. Some new shooters may need additional training time. I had very few issues acquiring the dot even at the first go, and none after a very short period of training. Hitting the range with several different handguns, all with different sighting arrangements, proved to be a non-issue. I decided to zero the RDS at 10 yards because it gave me ‘longer legs' without point of aim (POA) adjustment than many others (impact within 2 inches of POA out to 100yds, and within the length of a USPSA ‘A' Zone out to 135y). A 25y zero is also commonly touted. Ultimately, it doesn't matter what your zero is, provided that you know your holds. Just be sure to go out and actually test it for yourself. Some reading may scoff at a 100+ yard pistol fire. While it's true that particular range isn't the norm with a pistol, it's far from impossible or insurmountable. Advantages Red dots on rifles offer many advantages over irons, and so it goes for pistols. Better in low light, exceptional for tracking moving targets, speed*, use in unconventional positions, easier on the eyes (old ones especially, looking at you Reeder and Harrison), NVG use, and more. Since the 6 Second Mount is frame mounted, it doesn't reciprocate under fire, making for fast and seamless aimed followup shots. You also receive constant feedback on your grip, trigger pull, and sight wobble as you track the dot. It's very much like a non-projecting personal laser that works in all lighting conditions. With the 6 Second Mount installed, the pistol becomes noticeably more front heavy; this helps keep the muzzle down during cycling. Furthermore, it's made for what is arguably the most durable red dot on the planet. Notes, Considerations, and Some Solutions Firstly, though it may have “Micro” in it, the optic name becomes a misnomer when it's mounted to a pistol. Sure, compared to some competition guns it's downright svelte but there's no getting around the increased size and weight compared to an OEM Glock. You don't have backup sights. No, an Aimpoint Micro, particularly a frame mounted one, is unlikely to experience catastrophic failure. Even so, we all like to wear belts and suspenders in this coliseum. My immediate solution was to just install a laser. Many laser devices are incompatible with the 6 Second Mount because the the frame itself gets in the way. A guide rod laser should work just as well as it does in any other Glock. Or just get a Surefire X400U and be done with it. Of course I couldn't let well enough alone. I marked the centerline of the mount and put a drop of paint at the same height as the front sight. In that way it would act as a rudimentary sight (think shotgun bead). Around the house this worked great. On the range it also was acceptable, for about the duration of a magazine. As you can see I failed to account for exhaust from the ejection port. A full length fiber optic rod may be a better idea, but I'm not going to be drilling anytime soon. Because the Picatinny rail is slightly lower than the integrated accessory rail, some may find issue with weapon light activation. I have small hands, something that my friends often chide me about, and have no issue. If you do have a problem, using something like a Surefire DG switch may be in order. I put an asterisk on ‘Speed' in the Advantages section. If you're used to taking a flash sight picture with irons at close range, it will take some time to master with the 6 Second Mount. The tube design of the Aimpoint does help with natural alignment though. At distances beyond 15-20m, the 6 Second Mount really shines, and target acquisition is much faster at extended ranges. Manipulations might be different for you. If you're used to grabbing the slide over the top and leveraging against the rear sight—you can't. The addition of cocking knobs or extended end plates will give you the same issue as your rear sight, in that it will first have to be removed prior to stripping. Some skateboard tape on top, or more aggressive serrations makes life much easier. I opted for an aftermarket slide, which feels like it was practically designed for this setup. Holster selection is currently limited, but more companies are making them (stay tuned for our 6 Second Mount Holster Roundup, coming shortly). The Great Contrast and Conclusions I knew people would ask me about the Han Solo Blaster compared to the ever-more-common slide mounted RMR. Starting with the obvious, on the size side of things, the RMR wins. Height over bore (HOB) is higher on the ALG, and the RMR has a HOB higher than irons—but all are entirely usable. While RMRs are plenty durable, riding the slide is hard on everything. There are many names in optics-ready slides and gunsmiths who will mill them out but unfortunately, not all of them are created equally. Company X will produce more failures than Company Y, so you gotta do your research. With ALG, you know exactly what you're getting. The combination of the Aimpoint Micro and a non-reciprocating base makes the 6 Second Mount bombproof. You can have irons with the RMR, but you're far less likely to ever need them with the ALG. No permanent modification of the host pistol is required to install the ALG, so it can be more cost effective if you decide you don't like running a RDS. There's no chance of weakening your slide. Because the overall profile isn't so drastically changed with the RMR, it can fit into far more off-the-shelf holsters (though holsters specifically for protecting RMRs are still limited). The forward balance helps mitigate muzzle movement with the 6 Second Mount. In my completely subjective opinion, the ALG is simply more fun to shoot than a slide-riding optic. Personally, I'm running both (not on the same gun, dumbass). Remember to bear in mind this was made for some specific tasks for a specialized group of people—but that doesn't mean the benefits can't apply to you. The faster target acquisition and flat shooting makes it an exceptional handgun choice for home defense or competition, and I would go so far as to say it could replace the vaunted ‘truck gun' for many people. As more holsters come to market, I think you'll see more advocates for carrying it on the beat or on the street. The ALG 6 Second Mount is available in Black, Grey, Desert Dirt, and Purple. You can check them out on ALG's homepage here, or give them a follow on Facebook. 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