Kite K1 Red Dot
- By Pete Moore
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- Last updated: 23/03/2020
The generic red dot sight has been with us since the late 1970s, but we have seen more development of the marque in the last few years; spurred on, no doubt, by the rise of action-type shooting and driven hunting. Different from a traditional magnifying scope, they are 1x power only and primarily designed for shorter range and fast reaction shooting, with zero parallax and two eyes open use. Many companies have fielded dots of their own and to this list we must now add Browning with their K1.
A few years ago, Browning teamed up with Kite optics, so that they could offer a range of scopes and binoculars to compliment their rifles and now offer a good selection of both. I use their 1.6-10x42 on my Maral straightpull and it’s a good spec! I first saw their K1 at IWA and now have one on test and here’s what I think.
It’s built on the open-framed, reflex plan with a single vertical lens up front, made from MHR Advanced + Coating + PERMADURA (anti scratch) material. At the rear, is a small projector that directs the dot onto the front screen and the body is made from a single piece aluminium alloy for added strength. Power comes from a single, CR2032, coin-type battery, which sits in a pull-out drawer on the right side of the body, which is much better than having to remove it from the mount, as some other designs do.
From the box, the K1 comes with a removable Picatinny base, which is the most common fitting on many gun types these days and one I use on my Kite, QD base for my Maral. However, also on offer is another for barrelmounting on any Browning rifle; BAR, X-Bolt etc. too. Weighing just 36grams, it measures 27mm H x 47.5 L x 12.5 H. Sensibly, the dot size is 2MOA, which means it’s easily visible at shorter ranges, yet small enough to be able to push the shooting distance well past 100m.
Click values are 1MOA, which is about right and offer 140MOA in elevation and 100 in windage, so generous enough. Adjusters are simple, flush-fit Allen-headed screws marked with arrows R (right) and UP (elevate) accordingly, Kite includes a key. Illumination offers 11-settings and is controlled by two, rubbercovered (+/-) buttons on the left of the housing, again nice and easy. The range is more than enough for all needs and can handle dark to bright light conditions easily. A rubber cover is also included.
Fitted on my Maral, the K1 adds minimal weight and presents a nice round dot, with little flaring out, even at maximum illumination. It took the 30-06 recoil shock easily. As mentioned, the 2MOA dot is precise enough to handle easy shot placement from 0 to 100m and a fair bit more. Battery change is fast and easy and the internal circuitry has a 5-Hour shut down facility if it’s left on. Browning also includes a ‘lifetime warranty’. The build and functions are similar to that used by the likes of Vortex, Kahles and Hawke.