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  1. #1
    Shinken's Avatar
    Shinken is offline Junior Member
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    Which one for first time buyer... P226 or P229?

    I will be purchasing my first handgun every soon My goal in the early phase is general handgun classes (I will be taking some private lessons), target practice, and generally getting used to handguns. I have decided that my first purchase will be a Sig.

    Now if I understand right, the Sig P229 is almost the same as the P226 except that it is smaller and is best used as a Carry weapon (please correct me if I am wrong). If money was not an issue, which series would you recommend as my first handgun?

    CC

  2. #2
    benzuncle's Avatar
    benzuncle is offline Member
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    Shinken, the worst that could possibly happen is that you will own a Sig! The 229 is smaller; the barrel is about a half-inch shorter and it has a max 13 round capacity vs. the 15 rounds in the 226. The 9mm is a more inexpensive round than the other calibers offered in these Sig models.

    You didn't mention if you plan to carry or just tear up paper targets and the like. Lurk and "listen". I bought a P220 Compact with the intent on carrying and have begun doing just that. My choice was pretty much the same as yours. I looked at a Compact, a Carry and a 245. I had already decided on a 45 and had the good fortune of being able to shoot a Sig twice before getting way hooked on the shove of a 45. (But alas, 45ACP ammo isn't as cheap as 9mm so I've begun "rollin' my own".) Rent both models if you can and run a box or two of ammo through them. Warning: It is a hard thing to do, that going through only 100 rounds with a Sig in your hands. Don't forget to try shooting one-handed also. Good luck in your decision.

  3. #3
    Mike Barham's Avatar
    Mike Barham is offline Senior Member
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    If possible, take some formal training before you settle on a gun. I owned a P226 when I took my first real shooting class, which quickly caused me to reevaluate my opinions. I immediately traded the gun for a Colt Commander. Not saying the P226 is a bad gun - it's an excellent gun - but it didn't suit me well when trying to shoot fast and accurately. Anyway, most instructors will have loaner guns available.

    Of the two good guns you mentioned, get the P229 if you plan to carry. If you aren't going to carry, just pick the one you like the best. There's really about a nickel's worth of difference between them in the practical sense.
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  4. #4
    Shinken's Avatar
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    At the beginning at least, I do not plan on carrying, in due time... maybe. I am scheduling several sessions of practice and one-on-one instructions, I will take your advice and try them before deciding. Hopefully they have both models in stock. Thanks guys.

    CC

  5. #5
    roadkingjim is offline Junior Member
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    229 or 226?

    I was in the same position as you just a month ago. It's a tough decision that only you will ultimately make. I was able to rent both at the local range. Thought I liked the 226 , but bought the 229 Elite after shooting it. Just felt better to me. Personal preference. I believe your preference will change as you progress in the sport and I doubt this will be your only hand gun. As far as carry is concerned, it was also a factor in my deceision. I just purchased a Smith J frame air weight for carry. It made more sense for me. Any big gun is tough to hide in the warm weather and must be considered. Its a huge responsibility to make the decesion to pull the trigger and believe you are in a life and death situation. Pray you are never faced with it. The laws are complex in different states and need to be studied. Just buy what feels good to you and have fun with it at the range. You will learn more as you get into it. Hope this helps.

  6. #6
    SigZagger's Avatar
    SigZagger is offline Member
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    At least you are comparing simular style/model handguns. As stated before, it will be a personal perference. I have shot both the 226 and 229. For some reason, the 229 felt better to me. And I preferred the slide on the 229 because it was machined from a solid piece of stainless steel, compared to the 226 having a stamped steel slide. Again, a personal preference. Hopefully, your local gun store sells LE trade-ins. Much better prices compared to NIB. Again, personal preference.

  7. #7
    Shinken's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    Yeah I am starting to see a trend where people recommend to try out both firearms and decide based on grip, feel, slide etc... (that otherwise the handguns are very similar). Thanks for all the advice folks.

    CC

  8. #8
    Firebird is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Barham View Post
    If possible, take some formal training before you settle on a gun. I owned a P226 when I took my first real shooting class, which quickly caused me to reevaluate my opinions. I immediately traded the gun for a Colt Commander. Not saying the P226 is a bad gun - it's an excellent gun - but it didn't suit me well when trying to shoot fast and accurately. Anyway, most instructors will have loaner guns available.

    Of the two good guns you mentioned, get the P229 if you plan to carry. If you aren't going to carry, just pick the one you like the best. There's really about a nickel's worth of difference between them in the practical sense.
    That is almost exactly what I am facing. I held a few XD's, shot a .40 cal XD and they fit much better. Now the p226 is nice, but man the trigger is a long way away

  9. #9
    M.Martian is offline Junior Member
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    I had been planning on picking up a larger caliber handgun late last year (at the time I only had a PPK .32).

    A friend of mine has a P229 in .40 that I tried at the range. He has the Hogue finger groove grips on it and it felt great in the hand. After shooting his I knew I wanted either the P226 or the P229 and definitely with the Hogue grips.

    I eventually found a shop that had both on hand to hold and feel the differences with. After holding both, I found that the P229 just felt better in my hands for me. The weight felt a little bit more balanced for my hand.

    If you are unable to fire both, at least try firing one of the two. Then find a shop that has both on hand (usually if a shop carries Sig, they tend to have both models on hand) so you can really feel the difference.

  10. #10
    TexasFats is offline Junior Member
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    One thing that I found a few months ago for my P226 was a Mec-Gar magazine that holds 17 rounds and fits flush at the bottome, just like the stock 15 round mag. Neat! By the way, I don't mind buying Mec-Gar since they make the mags for SIG anyway. Some other third-party mags might not be good. My 17 round Mec-Gar mag seems to allow the pistol to function just as well as with the mags that came with it.

  11. #11
    Occram is offline Junior Member
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    The Sig P226 and P229 were both candidates when I was deciding on my first pistol. The other candidates were a Glock 23 and an H&K USP Compact .40.

    I chose the H&K over the others due to one thing... Comfort. The size, weight and grip of the gun matched my hand perfectly. I could reach all the controls easily and in the dark if needed. The Sig and Glock's grips were too thick for me.

    Keep in mind that any Sig is almost entirely metal and if you're deciding on this pistol for possible carry, you should know that these guns are significantly heavier than a polymer construction gun.

    However, as far as quality and reliability is concerned, there are none better than Sig, Glock & H&K. The argument between them has been ongoing forever but there are few who don't throw them all up in the same tier of excellence. Should you chose any of the previous manufacturers products, you'll have an excellent firearm.

    Chose your firearm based on what you like. Asking opinions is fine, but there isn't too much of a difference between the 226 & the 229... =D

  12. #12
    polyguy's Avatar
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    As considering the P229, become aware of the P229 SCT as well. It appears to be the 229 with four 17rd mags, basically. Additional firepower while retaining the compact size.

  13. #13
    Milliron is offline Junior Member
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    Buy the P229

    Ah, the Sig bug. Be forewarned, they're like cookies--you can't just eat one.

    Me, I bought a P220 Elite first time out--then a P229 .40 a week later--then a P226 a week after that. I held off on my P239 for about two months after that. Don't say you weren't warned.

    Notes: The P229 is my favorite Sig and the one I personally shoot the best. It is heavy, however (though "compact" it weighs as much or more than the P226, which is full size) You do, however, have the option in the P229 .40 of converting it to .357 Sig with nothing more than a drop in Sig factory barrel--for an extra $160 or so, you get two guns in one. Lots of guys I know love .357 SIG as a caliber, although it is an expensive round. Air marshals carry the P229 DAK in .357 SIG, FYI.

    That said, the P226 in 9mm is probably the best 9mm I have shot. Nothing against Glocks, the G19 is probably its greatest rival and is probably the best dollar for dollar value in a handgun. If you can get over the butt-ugly part.

    The only Sig I would realistically carry would be a P239. The P229 is a super gun, but for IWB carry, it's just too big and heavy.

    For your first gun, buy a plain jane P229 in either 9mm (cheaper ammo) or .40/.357 (more versatile). I got mine NIB with night sights for $699 at Bass Pro, which is one of the best retail deals I have ever gotten. I promise you will be happy with it.

  14. #14
    cmholliday's Avatar
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    Like Polyguy I also have the P229R SCT....and I've never regretted making the purchase. Not only does the 9mm version come with four 17 round mags it also has a fiberoptic front sight and rear Sig night sights. I really love the gun, and it's undoubtedly the most accurate firearm straight out of the box I've ever owned.

    Also, it is slightly heavier than some other model handguns built for concealed carry, but with a nice IWB it isn't difficult to conceal. I actually prefer it to my stainless 1911. I would suggest buying a standard mag to load and carry in the pistol to cut down on the weight a little. Put 2 of the 17 rounds mags in your pouch on the opposite side of your belt to help balance out the weight, and you'll have all the fire power you'll ever need.

  15. #15
    Maximo's Avatar
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    The p226 and p229 are both really great guns. As far a quality, reliability, durability, and accuracy there is no such thing better than a Sig in a non custom pistol. That being said if it doesn't work for you all the quality in the world doesn't mean very much. h

  16. #16
    Hotwire1 is offline Junior Member
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    Cool Shoot before you buy

    Your reply our all correct.

    Shoot before you buy !!!!

    I carry the P226 9mm, 17 round clips (1 - gun, 2 - Hanging), I know lots of power shots, I del money drops to the bank.

    Yes the P266 is heaver, but if you carry do you want to piss off an attacker or take them down???

    Think why, how often will I be using this gun.

    Hotwire1

  17. #17
    EAJ
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    Since the 9mm SIG P239 was mentioned, here’s a photo of the P239 SAS model converted
    to DA/SA with Nill grips. Accurate, reliable, and comfortable to carry.


  18. #18
    Shinken's Avatar
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    Thumbs up

    UPDATE:
    Because I could not find any of the ranges in my area that had the P226/229 in stock to try out, I blindly purchased a new P226 from SCP Firearms (Steven is awesome), and guess what... I LOVE my P226. Everything I expected it to be and more. I just got back from the range today, and I am enamored with it. Just wanted to update my status

    CC

  19. #19
    Hotwire1 is offline Junior Member
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    Thumbs up P226 Ejection

    Sounds like you found out , what a pkg.
    Gota love ejection up and over... not burning your partner..

    Have fun Shooting

    Hotwire1

  20. #20
    DevilsJohnson is offline Senior Member
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    I got a 226 and love it. It's one of the best 9mm's I've ever owned. Good luck with yours. I wanna see range report and soon!

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