Impressionista affectation or practical consideration?
Well, a bit of both. In the unlikely event that an operator’s blaster has BUIS installed at all, it’s sometimes conspicuous that the front one is positioned backwards.
Naturally, this has spread from In The Wild pics to impressions; and quite rightly so. Authenticity is key and DD’s Use What They Use strapline is the mantra of the top tier of impressionistas.
There are still a few people in the dark about this however, so whenever someone posts a pic of their accurate impression for general consumption, there is always a question or jibe that the front sight is on the wrong way around.
So it is an affectation, right? No. No it isn’t. There are a number of very good reasons to reverse the front sight, over and above concerns for authenticity.
Firstly, it’s possible to position the sight further forward when it’s reversed. This frees more space for other 12 O’clock rail dwellers (optic, PEQ, etc).
Secondly, it’s easier to flip the front sight up when pulling towards you. It’s also easier to acquire the overhanging end with gloves on, than it is when the sight’s blade is flush against the rail.
Thirdly, when the sight is up, if it’s a non-locking model, like the KAC, it stays up – even when moving through dense undergrowth which could push it shut, if it was orientated the other way around.
I just wonder when manufacturers are going to react to this use of their sights and come up with a pre-reversed model.