First Rounds through my new Sig P290. Very, VERY LONG
I’ll post this in the “General Semi-Auto” forum since some of you expressed interest in how my
new Sig P290 “worked”. I put a post in the Sig Forum, announcing I had bought the gun. And
with one question. And with links to my post in this forum. Been there two days/two night.
28 views, no responses. So I guess they aren’t interested.
This isn’t a “normal” range report, with slow fire attempts at target shooting small groups.
I hadn’t had time to try out the P290. And I didn’t have time today. So I just made the time.
If I’m going to keep it loaded around the house, I need to know if it actually works.
I took one hour to drive out and back to the closest Nat’l Forest place I can shoot. That hour
included shooting time. I also took my Beretta FS 92 and my S&W 642 Airweight snubby.
My drill was to set up my “standard” homemade paper handgun targets. Three concentric circles.
One inch, two inch, and three inch. So, the outer ring is six inch diameter. From seven yards.
This is what I did.
NO ear protection. If I ever have to use these guns, I want to know what it sounds and feels like.
To shoot what they are loaded with at home/carry. So, pick up the gun. Just PICK it up. No
adjustment of “the grip”. And point it at the target. Using whatever sights are in focus and FIRE.
Maybe this is a bit like a home invasion ? No time to think.
Without ear protection just this one time. Then back to “regular” sound protection practice. This
little drill might make some people go “bad, BAD, boy”. Not something you do at a real range.
First, the P290. Six in the mag, one in the chamber. The gun is 20 oz with empty mag.
Remington HD Ultimate Home Defense. 9mm 124 grain BJHP. Bronze Jacketed Hollow Point.
Muzzle Velocity 1125 fps. Muzzle Energy 349 ft-lb.
Stone cold, I emptied the gun as fast as possible. For the first shot, it seemed a “longer” DAO stroke
than I remembered from dry-firing it last Tuesday. Two shots were in the one inch ring. Three shots
inside the two inch ring. One shot was high and right on the three inch ring. One shot was low and right
by four inches. I have NO idea in which order those “results” were fired. Results seems acceptable to me
given “my drill”. I obviously need more practice. The gun felt fine and it seemed pretty easy to get the
sights back on target. The “sandy-feeling” pebble grain on the front and back of the grip seems “to help”.
I didn’t notice the “short grip” that only allows one finger plus half the ring finger.
Next, same drill with S&W snubby. “Airweight” is the aluminum frame, stainless cylinder version. 15 oz. empty.
Winchester USA Personal Protection. 38 Special +P 125 grain JHP. Bronze Jacketed exposed lead hollow point.
Muzzle Velocity 945 fps. Muzzle Energy 248 ft-lb.
Again, just picked it up, aimed and fired all five shots as fast as possible. One shot in the two inch ring.
Three shots in the three inch ring. A 4.5 inch “flyer” (My favorite word from “gun reviews) up and right.
Again, I have no idea about the order of the placements. I was a bit surprised about the “bad results”. The
laser isn’t visible in the bright sun, so that wasn’t a factor. I think this just reinforces what we all know.
Practice often with these “little guns” to develop/keep your skills. “Static” target style trying for best group is not “practice”.
Finally, my Beretta FS 92 Centurion. Same grip/mag as FS 92, slightly shorter barrel. 33 oz. with e0mpty mag.
Remington Golden Saber. 9mm 147 grain JHP. My long-time 9mm SD load. I like the 147 grain over the 124.
Muzzle Velocity 990 fps. Muzzle Energy 320 ft-lb.
Same drill, pick it up and empty 15 rounds at the 8.5 in. by 11 in. tall paper target at seven yards. Four in the
one inch ring. Four in the two inch ring. Three in the three inch ring. Oops, that is only 11 shots. The “other
four” were on the paper, but low. Between the bottom of the three in. ring and the 5.5 in. bottom of the paper.
I expected better. But, yep, I’ve been neglecting my practice. Not just with my “little guns”. All of them.
So, I didn’t “prove” much. The P290 fired when asked and its recoil didn’t seem big or obnoxious. That’s good.
Maybe its recoil seemed a bit less than the snubby’s .38 Spl. +P. But, I fired everything so fast it’s hard to evaluate.
All three guns did what I asked. No fuss, no muss, no misfires, no failures of any kind. Except me.
Finally, one bad thing. It’s been a while since I fired the Beretta. And, I fired it quickly after emptying two DAO guns.
And I started to fire the DA/SA Beretta as fast as possible. Oops, the second (first SA) shot lit off as a surprise. It was
on the paper “somewhere”. But, it was not a controlled shot. Maybe it was one of the “low shots” ? In any case, a
classic example of why LEO’s are using DAO instead the old original “wonder nine” DA/SA.
Not a good thing when the adrenalin is flowing bigtime.
As always, YMMV
good post. Thanks for the insight!
Keep in mind, that during and adrenaline dump, you WILL revert to your level of training.
-If your training consists of grabbing the gun incorrectly (not fixing your grip) then you will do that when it counts.
-If your training consists of mashing the trigger on a DA/SA pistol on a square range then you will do that when it counts.
-If your training consists of "Using whatever sights are in focus and FIRE", then you will do that when it counts.
-If you "have NO idea in which order those “results” were fired", then you are not to a level where you are able to "call your shots".
This is a harsh, but prudent review of what you posted, please do not take it as me being mean. It sounds like you want to get better and I have a few pointers for you given the above mentioned issues.
1. When "grabbing the gun", ALWAYS ensure you have the same grip. If this means that your movements TO the gun are faster to allow for this, then work on speeding up "getting to the gun" so to speak. Having the same grip on the gun all the time helps your body to index the gun in the same position making picking up the sights more natural and less of a conscious thought.
2. When manipulating the trigger, work from slow (for a long time) to fast, always ensuring that the trigger press is always the same. You WILL default to the level of training, serious training, when/if shit hits the fan. Proper trigger control is critical to putting rounds where they need to go, in conjunction with #1 above.
3. When presenting the gun, sure, there are times when metal over meat ("Using whatever sights are in focus") will work, but are you willing to count on that if there are friendlies in the background? Focus on always having proper sight alignment. After you've mastered it, and I mean mastered it (good luck it takes years) in relation to defensive shooting, the alignment of the sights will be second nature. They'll just appear in your view already aligned because you are (again) doing #1 properly, along with a consistent presentation of the gun.
4. Being able to "call your shots" is something that also takes time. This can be achieved by slowing your rate of fire down until you can consistently put them where you "call" them (where you want them to go with precision, accuracy and repetition). Speed comes with time and patience. Build on the basics FIRST, speed comes with having the basics down pat.
Finally, having a round in your Beretta go off uncontrolled is a sign that you are not yet familiar enough with the weapon. Yes, yes, yes, I know... I'm being picky, but I've shot enough that I can pick up any one of my assorted pistols and not have this happen simply from how the gun feels in my hands. This also comes with years of practice and dedication to the platform. I'd strongly recommend picking one gun and becoming more proficient with it rather than shooting many guns. It simply comes down to your body's ability to manage stimuli. Focus on one and your body will remember what to do when it "feels" that gun in your hand. Focus on too many, and you can get confused, hence the surprise shot you experienced.
Good luck with your journey, and yes, it's a journey. Becoming proficient with a pistol is a marathon, not a sprint. I've been shooting pistols for over two decades and I can honestly only say that there are three guns that I've gotten to a level of proficiency that I'd stake my life on it. The others, they serve their purpose (mostly bullseye shooting), but when it comes to defensive shooting... most times... less is more (when it comes to how many different types of pistols you have)
Thanks for the review.
Look forward to a review when you have more time with just the 290.
By the way, I can understand your not knowing in which order the bullets where place on the target, you were just do what I think would be common if we had to draw and fire our weapons in self defence....
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