Ameriglo-GL-115Meprolight-ML-10224ObTruGlo-TFO

I’m in the process of upgrading the sights on a few of my pistols so I figured I’d get a variety of sights and do a quick once over on all of them. In this round I have access to a set of Ameriglo (GL-115) sights, a set of Meprolight (ML-10224) sights and a set of TruGlo TFO (TG131GTIY) fiber optic sights; all are for standard GLOCK pistols (9mm, .40, etc) and are Tritium powered night sights. And if you’ aren’t familiar with the whole tritium thing . . .

Tritium is a radioactive isotope of Hydrogen that emits electrons that can cause phosphors to glow and be used as self-powered lighting devices called betalights. This is used in many things, like watches and night sights. Tritium is very expensive costing around $30,000 USD per gram.

Lets see how they stack up.

Ameriglo-Package-01Meprolight-Package-01TruGloTFO-Package-01

It’s worth noting that the Ameriglo sights are marked as Trijicon sights; from what I’ve read the metal portions of the sights are made by Ameriglo, but the Tritium inserts are designed and made by Trijicon.

Construction

All three of these sights have a metal foundation with tritium for night time illumination. The Ameriglo and Meprolight sights have a small white ring around the tritium for use during the day where the TFO sights are fiber optic with no ring. The overall construction of each of these sights is good, as you would expect. They are well made, and the housings are quite robust and should be very durable.

The Ameriglo and Meprolight sight styles are the same as the gun they are going on, in this case GLOCK pistols. So they have the standard front sight post with a dovetail rear 2-post sight with 30° angles on the sides. The TFO sight, front and rear, are elongated because of the space needed for the fiber optic components. All three of the sights have slightly different lengths, but the TFO is a whooping 0.965 inches (25.51mm) long, opposed to 0.497 inches (12.62mm) for the Meprolight (the next longest). So the TFOs are definitely a different look in that respect.

I’ve heard that the TFO sights have had issues in the past with the fiber optics coming loose or actually falling out, but the ones I have seem pretty durable. I smacked them around a bit and nothing seemed to move or come lose. I’ll be using them on one of my training guns, so it will get beat up and I will report back if I have any issues. There have also been reports of various Trijicon sights having issues with the white paint on the sights coming off if you get any solvent or cleaning fluid on them. I haven’t seen this happen, but again, I will report back if I run into any issues with the Ameriglo or Meprolight sights.

Specifications

Ameriglo Meprolight TruGlo TFO Glock Factory Sights
Front Sight Length 0.451in (11.47mm) 0.497in (12.62mm) 0.965in (25.51mm) 0.301in (7.66mm)
Front Sight Height 0.164in (4.18mm) 0.172in (4.39mm) 0.194in (4.94mm) 0.153in (3.90mm)
Front Sight Width 0.139in (3.53mm) 0.160in (4.06mm) 0.141in (3.59mm) 0.159in (4.04mm)
Rear Sight Length 0.311in (7.91mm) 0.276in (7.01mm) 0.966in (24.55mm) 0.256in (6.51mm)
Rear Sight Height 0.167in (4.24mm) 0.187in (4.76mm) 0.218in (5.55mm) 0.206in (5.23mm)
Rear Sight Width 0.740in (18.81mm) 0.692in (17.59mm) 0.717in (18.21mm) 0.903in (22.95mm)
Rear Sight Aperture Width 0.151in (3.85mm) 0.140in (3.57mm) 0.147in (3.74mm) 0.140in (3.57mm)
Note: All measurements exclude the dovetail on the sights. All measurements are overall size, based on the tallest or largest area. The GLOCK factory rear sights are integrated with the dovetail, so measurements like the width are a little different since there is no real reference point.

Day Use

For daytime use, the Ameriglo and Meprolight sights act, more or less, as normal white 3-dot sights. You can’t see any of the illumination under normal lighting conditions. Actually, even in lower light conditions, you can barely see any of the illumination. However, the TFO sights, because of the combination of fiber optics and tritium, are pretty bright in direct sunlight. The color of the fiber optics shows through clearly.

Here is a picture of what the sights look like under normal light. They are all lined up, reading left to right, Ameriglo, Meprolight, TruGlo TFO.

NightSights-Light-01-Narrow

The Ameriglo and Meprolight sights are very similar; The Meprolights seem to have a larger tritium insert with a little less white around the insert. The TruGlo TFO sights are quite a bit different since they also have the fiber optic dots. In bright light, their green and yellow fiber optic tubes are very clearly visible. In moderate light, they are a little hard to see, and with no white area surrounding them, can be slightly harder to see. That being said, they are just much better in direct light.

Night Use

For night time use I prefer a sight set with a front sight that’s a different color than the rear sights. The reason for this is that in a pitch black environment, or in minimal light, it’s tough to keep track of the sights if they are all the same color. Your depth perception can become confused and things can go a bit crazy. I find it’s best to take the guesswork out of it.

The Ameriglo and TFO sights have a green front and yellow rear sight and the Meprolight sights are green and orange. Each manufacturer typically offers one or two variations of sight colors, so you have some options.

In the picture below you can see what the sights look like in the dark. They are, left to right, Ameriglo, Meprolight, TruGlo TFO.

NightSights-Dark-02-Narrow

I prefer the orange and green sights vs the yellow and green sights. I find the orange is a better contrast to the green. In the picture it’s a little hard to see the yellow, it looks more green. In reality it’s more clearly yellow, but it is a little closer to the green than the orange.

Installation

TruGloTFO-Installation-01

The installation of the sights is pretty straightforward if you have all of the right tools. You will need a 3/16″ nut driver (or GLOCK Front Sight Installation Tool). I use a standard 3/16″ nut driver, it works great, and is much cheaper. You can pick one up here). You will also need a sight pusher tool, something like the MGW Sight Pro Tool for rear sight removal and installation.

Installation is pretty simple for GLOCKs. Basically you knock the stock front sight out (using a small punch) then push out the factory rear sight (often times the factory plastic sights get damaged during removal). Then you simply press in the front sight and attach it with the screw and a little thread locker. Then push in the new rear sights. Make sure everything is aligned and do some test firing to see if any adjustments are needed.

The Ameriglo and Meprolight sights fit perfectly. I didn’t have to do anything and they all fit together very well. With the TFO sights on the other hand, I had to do some sanding on the front sight post to get it to fit into the notch in the GLOCK slide. It was just a little too large. Once I sanded that down a bit, everything went together OK, but I wasn’t that happy that I had to do do some work to get them to fit. I don’t know if every TFO sight will have that issue, but be prepared if you are installing them yourself.

Conclusions

I’ve been a long time user of Meprolight sights. I don’t think there is a heck of a lot special about them, they just seem to work, but the same could be said about many brands. The variance in these kinds of sights really comes in with their brightness, the sight gap (the distance on each side of the front post when looking through the rear sight), and the overall height of the sight posts. Brightness and the sight gap are mostly matters of personal preference, but the sight height can change point of aim and impact.

As far as brightness, you don’t want something super bright, you just want something you can see. It’s not a flashlight, it’s to aid in sight acquisition and aiming.

Of course, there are other variations out there, products like the XS Sight System. It’s mostly a matter of figuring out what you like and what works best for you. I personally prefer standard 3-dot sights over other types of hybrid versions or red dots. Your mileage will probably vary.

Also, remember, any time you make a change to a firearm like adding new sights — especially a defense weapon — put in some range time to ensure that everything is working the way you want and is still reliable, accurate, and most importantly safe.

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37 Responses to GLOCK Sight Comparison: Ameriglo vs. Meprolight vs. TruGlo TFO

  1. I know it’s too early to tell in this initial review, but I’d be interested to see some comments on the longevity of the tritium between the brands. i.e. does one brand lose brightness sooner/more than others?

    Night sights aren’t cheap and I’d hate to buy a set just to lose that advantage in a few years.

    • You see the Trijicon name on the Ameriglo front sights. Trijicon instals the tritium in other sights that cost $50-$100 less.
      I am getting the I-Dot Pro Ameriglo sights for my Glock in my Christmas stocking. With the I-Dot, you don’t have to worry about contrasting colors because there are only two dots. The front sight is the one on top. This system suits my both eyes open shooting style better than the three dot sights. That is why I liked the rear “U” sight on my Glock. My stock front plastic sight cracked in two so I am going to upgrade to these night sights.

  2. TFO’s I thought were a good idea, kind of like the 40 S&W of sights, until I actually used some and currently sport some of the non-TFO Brite Sights on my competition pistol. The night sight picture, meh it is a night sight picture, not a big deal, but the big point of differentiation is the fiber bit. The fibers in the rear sight add visual noise to acquiring a sight picture and even with contrasting rear sight colors. My eye (and those who have shot them typically agree) that your eye immediately fixates on the rear sight then you have to look forward to the front sight versus a blacked out rear with a single fiber front, where your eye goes straight to the front. Further, the diameter of the fiber the TFO’s use is gigantic (comparatively). When compared to small diameter competition sight, they don’t glow as brightly as a proper fiber optic sight with a similar length fiber. On a competition sight the sides and even front of the fiber are exposed and the light concentrates onto one small point which glows like an ember, by comparison the Brite Sights / TFOs kind of smolder quietly. The open design of something like a Dawson may be more prone to breaking the fiber/having it slip out, but it’s not happened to me personally yet and it works better when it’s up.

    So all of that to say this, if you want high contrast night sights you might be able to use in competition, I had better results with something like the Ameriglo Hackathorn/CAP sets or Trijicon HD’s. if you want to go the fiber route, it’s tough to beat Dawson Precision / Taran Tactical / Warren Tactical/Sevigny set.

    The TFO’s make sense on paper, but I don’t think they’re any better than traditional night sights and are probably worse off for competition shooting.

    • Apparently your eyes have not turned 40 yet.

      After turning 40 and having my eyes take Schmidt I started using TFO front blades on as many as my guns as I could get them for. Love them.

      • All the more reason you would benefit from a brighter fiber optic like what Dawson or Taran sells. I’m going to make a youtube video profiling the difference.

  3. I recently installed Ameriglo Fiber Optic front sights on all my Glocks. They sent a nut driver with them at no additional cost. The sights work great.

  4. Got speed sights on my 19, Glock night sights on my 30S. Love them both, lean towards the speed sights. But then using stock Glock plastic sights is like pounding your hand with a hammer because it feels so good when you stop.

  5. mark_anthony_78 The loss in brightness will go down the same for all of them at the same rate if all of the tritium is the same age. The brightness loss is based on the halflife of the tritium which is 4500 days + or – 8 says (12.32 years +or – .02 yearsm that means after 12.32 years they will be half the brightness and in 12.32 more years they will be half that brightness (1/4 brightness) and so on every 12.32 years. This will be true for anything that is tritium lit.

    • Yep, I just didn’t know if different brands seemed brighter longer, either due to design, size of the dot, or how much they can guarantee you’re getting “new” tritium instead of something that’s already been on the shelf a few years.

  6. Trijicon’s lifetime limited warranty states that the tritium lamp is warranted to glow for five (5) years for orange night sights, twelve (12) years in green and yellow night sights from date of original manufacture.

  7. You can keep any and all three dot sights. I prefer one dot up front to focus on especially when speed is critical.

  8. If you look on the guns of all the top shooters and top trainers, you won’t find any of the 3 products you are reviewing. Many of them favor a solid black rear with a narrow front sight (0.100″ wide vs the chubby front sights in the sets you are evaluating), or a black rear with wide notch and a 0.125″ wide front, with tritium or fiber. I’ve seen multiple TFO front sights fall apart, typically after 200-400 rounds of use in a single training day. And the Meprolight sights have a fundamental design flaw that’s actually shown in their ads: if you line up the dots horizontally, the top edges of the sights don’t line up. You actually have to run the front sight dot high (as shown in the pics in their print ads), to get a normal sight picture.

    The other problem with all the “blister pack/retail store” sights you are reviewing is that they have no option to zero the gun. Dawson Precision offers a “perfect impact” deal where you can get a front sight in the correct height to actually zero your gun with your chosen carry ammo. With the cheapo sets, you get what you get, and you have to remember what the vertical offset is. Run your tests out to 15 and 25 yards and check group center vs. point of aim. Don’t just go out and shoot a bunch of 5 yard targets and declare they are all good for “combat accuracy”.

  9. For what it’s worth I installed TFOs five weeks ago. I’ve shot in four bowling pin matches since, and have one win, and one second place. Between the match rounds and the for fun shooting afterwords, about 8-900 rounds, nothing has become loose. I feel they are a little quicker than the glock nite sights they replaced.

  10. You should throw Trijicon Bright & Tough and HD sights as well. They both have excellent night time capabilities and different color options. I’ve compared them before and the HD’s are definitely the way to go.

  11. I’ve had guns for about 23 years and many years ago I used Trijicon sites. About 5 years ago I was at the Police supply store and they recommend Tru Glo’s. I had them put on my Glock 21 and since then have never looked back. I have had them put on about 10 guns since then. If I buy a used gun with other sites I just usually leave them on since sites are not cheap. I currently have 4 Glocks and 3 have Tru Glo’s. My gen 4 Glock 23 already had Tru dot sites when I got it so I’m fine with that. I also have 4 H&K’s and two of them came with sites already. I’m going to have Tru Glo’s put on them as well. Last week I had Trijicon HD sites put on my M&P 40 full size
    And I dont care for them at all. If the rear dots were a bit bigger it would be fine but I’m not doing competitions so I want something I can acquire better and hate the rear dots. Anyway I think Tru Glo’s are the way to go for me. They just work better for me and may not work as well for others. I just love that in daylight the light hits the top and they still glow super bright from the fiber optic part of the sites.

  12. Nice comparison. Got a little confused when you said if you’re using the sights in pitch black: you wouldn’t be able to see your target? Maybe you were implying the use of NV? Idk, besides that good write up.

  13. Your specs indicate that the Mepro sights have a front sight with a width wider (.160) than the rear notch width (.140). Is this a problem?

    • you have BEEN WAITING HERE FOR 10 DAYS…OOPS I MEAN 10 YEARS FOR THE COMPARISON?
      WHAT AN IDIOT!?
      YOU KNOW WHAT IS EVEN DUMBER!? ME…BECAUSE I ALSO HAD TO WAIT TEN YEARS TO REPLY TO THE DUMBEST QUESTION OF ALL TIME. OOPS MY ENGLISH IZ SNOT SO BUENPO

      HEY ARE THERE ANY WOMEN HERE? I’M LOOKING FOR A FAST……..

      “COMMENT REMOVED BY WEBMASTER DUE TO MANY COMPLAINTS”

  14. Have had me pros for years but two front sights have had to be sent back and replaced due to dying within a year. I switched to ameriglo the last 3 years on several guns and haven’t had any issues at all. They’re well made and they’re made in America by Americans.

  15. I wish you’d have a similar guide about some tall suppressor type handgun sights. It could be especially interesting also regarding not only these sights being the suppressor sights, but also as the co-witnessing sights working in conjunction with some different and popular Red Dot sights, like Trijicon, Burris, Leupold, etc. After all MOS guns (like Glock MOS) are very common these days.

  16. Tru Glo’s Customer Service is extremely bad. Getting any type of positive response from them is like pulling teeth. I wish I had better news, maybe if you bend to their will. I know what I expected from them and was very disappointed.

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