How to Mount a Red Dot on Your Pistol?

April 15, 2024 3 min read

How to install a red dot on your pistol? What is optics-ready system? What is adapter plate? What do you need to consider when picking a suitable adapter plate for your pistols? We are going to explain all of these questions in the following paragraphs.

This article may refer other websites or brands for clarification and instruction.

What is the optics-ready system?
Optics-ready system is a specialized slide cut for low-profile red dot installation. While pistols like the CZ SHADOW 2® OR and GLOCK® MOS require an adapter between the cut and red dot, others like the GLOCK® Slimline MOS are designed for direct mounting of our MAG footprint red dots without an adapter.

One thing we want to mention here is that pistols from the same brand, the same series may or may not be equipped with an optics-ready system. Two straightforward methods to identify if the pistol is with or without an optics-ready system, looking for "OR" in the name or checking for a removable plate on the top of the pistol.


Two specialized optics-ready systems

GLOCK® Standard MOS: The pistol with standard MOS system comes with four adapter plates, each marked with a corresponding number, to match red dot sights with specific footprints. The system was created by GLOCK®'s engineers to simplify the red dot installment process, referred from

VE red dot installing on GLOCK® 17 Gen 5 MOS
Check the video, Mounting a Red Dot Sight Vector Optics SCRD-36 1x22x26 on Glock 17 Gen5 MOS FS

Note: In addition to the four footprints mentioned above, there are more footprints, such as VOD, which designed for enclosed red dots. If you have got an enclosed red dot with VOD footprint, you will need an adapter which converts from MOS system to VOD.

Our red dots with VOD footprint: SCRD-63 / SCRD-F63 / SCRD-SM63

GLOCK® Slimline MOS (G43X / G48)
Slimline MOS system was tailored for micro-optics with MAG footprint. You just need to remove the original blank filled plate and mount the MAG red dot directly.

VE Frenzy red dot on GLOCK 48 slimline MOS

Other optics-ready system
For other optics-ready system, the installment process is quite similar. If the footprint of the red dot is the same as the the footprint on the pistol slide cut, then everything is quite intuitive. Remove the original plate and mount the red dot! If the red dot's footprint is different from pistol's slide cut pattern/footprint, you will need to find an adapter plate/optics ready plate, of which the bottom side is pistol's slide cut pattern/footprint and the upper side is red dot's footprint. After you find the adapter plate, remove the blank filler plate, place the right adapter plate and install the red dot.

Check the video,

How to Mount the Vector Optics Frenzy 1x22x26 Red Dot Sight on a CZ Shadow 2 OR Optic Ready Pistol


No optics-ready system
Most pistols are without optics-ready system. In this case, you will need find a mount adapter to sit on the pistol first.

The barrel slides of the pistols vary from each other. Therefore, when choose the mount adapter, you still need to think about two sides of the it. The bottom side should match the barrel slide of the pistol and the upper side should align with the red dot footprint. Usually the sellers will clarify the matchable pistol for your convenience.

After picking the mount adapter, you will need to remove the rear sight with tools, put the plug (of the mount plate) in the rear sight dovetail mount, place the plate and install the red dot!

Check the video, How to Mount the Vector Optics Frenzy 1x20x28 Red Dot Sight on Glock 48


Another important thing you should know is the screws matter. I will keep it brief here. Basically, users will need to consider the pattern and the length of the screws, if they match with the screw holes or not. We will explain screws-related problems in our upcoming blog posts. Currently, we offer a screw package for different adapters and pistols, SCTK-07.

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