There are good-quality handguns, decent affordable handguns and then there are cheap guns. The SIG P-Series offers excellent reliability, accuracy and handling.
They are not inexpensive, but the SIG design is simply uncompromising. The pistol was intended to meet the needs of German police and special units during the first wave of terrorism.
The P220 had to be reliable above all. Accuracy was valued, as the pistol would be called on to take hostage rescue shots.
The pistol was designed to replace the Walther PP and PPK/s pistols generally issued to peace officers. Reliability and wound potential of the PP series was lacking, as well as accuracy.
Stop gaps such as the Walther PP Super and P1, as well as American .38 caliber revolvers, had been issued in the interim. The SIG P-Series valued simplicity.
There was no manual safety, only safety features. The long double-action first-shot trigger and firing-pin block were the only things between the shooter and a discharge, and all that was needed.
The original SIG P220 9mm was among the most accurate service pistols ever adopted. This single-stack 9mm Luger was eventually offered in .45 ACP and the much less common .38 Super.
The SIG P-Series has expanded to include the SIG P226 high-capacity 9mm, the compact SIG P228, now replaced by the P229, and other variants.
Modern P-Series Usage
The P-Series has been adopted by many federal agencies including the Secret Service and Federal Air Marshals. Additionally, a number of state police use the SIG P-Series.
The bottom line is that if an agency issues the SIG, they have done so on merit, not the low bid. I first became familiar with the SIG when an agency I served with issued officers the SIG P226.
I found an excellent handgun with unquestioned reliability.
The double-action first shot was smoother than anything I had used, and at the time, the pistol was the only factory handgun I had fired as accurate as a custom-grade 1911.
I had given up the 1911 I had previously carried and adopted the SIG P226 along with the rules of the new agency. The agency was a step up and I adapted to the 9mm SIG.
I managed to have the P220 .45 approved for duty for those that qualified to a higher standard. I would feel very comfortable with the SIG as a duty sidearm.
The double-action trigger is smooth enough that a fast accurate shot to seven yards isn’t difficult for those that practice.
Once the first shot is fired, you have a crisp 4.2-pound trigger action that allows for excellent control and shot placement.
Later, I was able to move back to the cocked-and-locked 1911, but I have kept a P-Series on hand since. Today I own several. The SIG P220 .45 is among the most accurate .45 caliber handguns I have owned.
It isn’t unusual for the P220 to group five shots into less than two inches at 25 yards with quality ammunition such as the SIG Sauer Elite 200-grain V Crown.
Some have grouped five shots into 1.25 inches when I am on my game. The P226 and P229 are similarly accurate, although in general, not quite as accurate as a solid P220.
On a side note, I found the 200-grain SIG Sauer load very accurate in all .45s.
The Illustrious P229
Perhaps the best balanced of all SIG P-Series pistols is the P229. This handgun features a steel slide over an aluminum receiver and offers excellent balance.
The P229 RX with SIG ROMEO optic is a first-class handgun, fast on target and accurate. My favorite of all the P229s is a SIG P229 in .40 S&W.
The .40 is a hard-hitting caliber that isn’t difficult to control in the P229 and offers excellent accuracy. Despite pretty shaky claims, the .40 S&W hits harder than the 9mm and offers real versatility.
I like the P229 a lot, it makes an excellent SIG carry gun. The P229 RX is a good shooter that offers real punch with the SIG Sauer Elite 9mm — I prefer the 124-grain load.
The bottom line, on all of these SIG carry pistols — fit, finish and reliability are very consistent and very good.
SIG Carry Improvements: SRT & SAS
SIG P-Series handguns have been improved over the years with various advances. These include tritium sight inserts and changes in grip material.
The short reset kit and short trigger are misunderstood, as they are not the same thing. The short reset group includes a safety lever and sear.
When you install the Short Reset Trigger (SRT) kits you enjoy a shortened trigger reset. This means that the trigger and trigger finger do not have to move as far forward to reset the trigger.
There is also a reduction in single-action take-up before the ‘wall’ is met for the trigger press. The short trigger is just that a shorter trigger for shorter trigger reach.
When the two are combined, you have an excellent trigger action. My personal SIG carry P220 has both the short trigger and short reset. This is the P220 Carry version with a short slide.
This pistol also has the SIG Anti-Snag treatment. This (SAS) means the ends of the slide are rounded and smoothed for snag-freed concealed carry.
I like this system a great deal. The shorter slide doesn’t materially affect accuracy, but the pistol clears leather quickly. The SRT makes for excellent trigger control.
I like this handgun when traveling and for home ready. No need to lower the hammer for home ready, cock the hammer to fire or take the safety off as the SIG is drawn.
For home defense, the SIG P-Series makes a lot of sense. Sure the high bore axis of the SIG will never allow a good shooter to win a competition against the 1911, but personal defense isn’t IPSC.
The SIG P-Series is among the finest handguns ever manufactured and a first-class firearm for personal defense, home defense and service use.
If you want to convert your SIG P-Series to the SRT setup, Grayguns.com offers the full kit. This is a well-made set that offers an excellent upgrade for the P-Series pistol.
SIG P-Series Accuracy
Here are accuracy results from five-shot groups at 25 yards (average of two groups) with SIG P-Series handguns.
SIG P229 RX
|Load||Group Size in Inches|
|SIG 124-Grain FMJ||1.5|
|SIG 147-Grain V Crown||1.3|
SIG P220 Carry
|Load||Group Size in Inches|
|SIG 230-Grain FMJ||2.25|
|SIG 200-Grain V Crown||1.5|
|SIG 230-Grain V Crown||1.65|
What is your favorite SIG carry gun? Let us know in the comments below.