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Knowing the Difference Between Picatinny and Weaver Rails for Your Red Dot Sight

Whether you are an avid target-shooter or you want to learn, then you are probably well-acquainted with red dot sights. Red dot sights allow users to quickly acquire their target at an extended range. There are thousands of different types of red dot sights on the market. In addition, red dot sights are only one category of many firearm accessories. If you are new to red dot sights, then it is important you know the difference between Picatinny and Weaver rails. This can help you make sure you buy the right sight for your gun. Understanding your equipment is the first step in becoming a successful marksman or hunter. Read on to learn more, and begin your journey!

red dot sight sawyer weaver rail

What are Weaver Rails?

Weaver rails were introduced before Picatinny systems. The Weaver rails don’t necessarily have consistent spacing between the grooves. Weaver systems have slots that are .180” wide and have smaller slots than on a Picatinny. If you are looking to purchase a firearm sight and know that your gun has a Weaver rail, then it is important to be sure you buy a sight that will fit correctly onto your gun. Firearm sights withstand significant amounts of force. Ensure that your mount your firearm sight properly to prevent damage or injury. To read into some more information on Weaver (and Picatinny), check out this website here.

**Products meant for Picatinny rails will NOT fit on a Weaver rail. However, products meant for Weaver rails CAN fit on a Picatinny rail.**

What are Picatinny Rails?

Picatinny rails have specific dimensions of grooves and notches. These mounting systems have slots that are .206” wide. You can find these types of systems typically built into a rifle or a handgun. There are many different products on the market today that can easily be added onto Picatinny mounting systems. These can include scopes, tactical lights, night vision sights, a red dot sight, and more. The US military adopted Picatinny rails in 1995, which has attributed to the rise in their popularity.

Today, Picatinny is the most popular mounting system. In conclusion, you will probably see more modern guns with Picatinny systems rather than with Weaver. Your new sight will most likely fit on Picatinny over Weaver rails, as well. This is partly due to the consistent spacing that makes it a better option when switching out different accessories between guns. X-Vision Optics carries a wide variety of Picatinny-compatible night vision and thermal optics. Check out our options today, and get out there!