P220 0R P226 .45acp vs. .40s&w

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    1. #1
      Junior Member 10-Ring's Avatar
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      P220 0R P226 .45acp vs. .40s&w

      I am looking to buy either a P220(.45acp) or a P226(.40s&w). Is one better than the other? Is one caliber better than the other?

    2. #2
      Member Growler67's Avatar
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      Greetings and welcome to the forum. Better is subjective. Without getting into the caliber debate, i would say put them both in your hands and choose the one that fits and feels better to you. Other considerations between the two you mentioned are:

      P220 - Single stack mag (thinner grip width)
      - only one caliber of ammunition to purchase

      P226 - Double stack mag (wider grip width)
      - with the .40, you can purchase conversion barrels in .357SIG (and use the same recoil spring and mags), 9mm (but you'll have to purchase a recoil spring and mags) but you'll have options for up to 3 guns in one

      Those are the primary consideration, IMO, before you decide which to get. I have both, but mine are quite old (without rails) and as my P226 came in 9mm, I would have to purchase a slide as well as a recoil spring and mags to fire any other caliber. Any other questions or concerns, just ask. Good Luck which ever you pick. You won't be disappointed.

    3. #3
      Senior Member Ram Rod's Avatar
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      If you like the 45acp for what it is, magazine capacity isn't an issue. If you like 1911's, the P220 SAO is a refreshing change. Anything other than 45acp....I'll stick with the Glocks thanks.

    4. #4
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      Both are pretty good rounds. I have a 229 Sig in 40 and love it. My friend has a 220 and I've shot it and like it a lot too. It's going to have to come down to what you think feels best in your hand. I've been a 45 man for years but have been buying more 40's over the last year or so. They both are great rounds

    5. #5
      Junior Member 10-Ring's Avatar
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      Thanks for your input guy's. I have read that most shooters don't care much for the 40 s&w round. They say it is not much better than the 9mm? But I thought the 40 s&w was the new hot round? Anyway, I will check both out at the gun store. Any feeding problems with the 45acp in the 220?

    6. #6
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      I have a 220 with just over 500 rounds through it. No feeding issues at all.

    7. #7
      Member Growler67's Avatar
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      My P220 was made in 1988 and I've not had any problems with anything I've fed it. .40S&W is the new popular chick in class. Caliber debate aside, I found it has more torque than 9mm or .45. Maybe not the most descriptive analogy, but it wasn't to my liking. It couldve been due to the guns I have tried it in, but that number keeps growing and I'm still not liking it. Will remain open minded and continue trying though. Some will get into the "compromise" factors of the caliber debate. Fact is, it'll kill a mortal human just as any other bullet if it hits the mark. Try it for yourself and see if cranks your handle.

    8. #8
      Junior Member 10-Ring's Avatar
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      Hey Growler67, about the torque issue, I read that recoil is a bit more with the 40s&w over the 9mm and 45acp. Maybe I'll try the P220. Thanks for your help.

    9. #9
      Junior Member Mike_E's Avatar
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      I have quite a few SIGs and find the SIG P220 an excellent gun/caliber, though expensive gun to shoot. My SIG P229R .40SW is a bit more versatile since I have a .357SIG drop-in barrel and a Bar-Sto .9mm barrel. I have to admit, I had to do a bit of 'smithing on the Bar-Sto barrel to get the proper fit.

      I can't speak for a SIG P226 40SW since I have the 9mm version. But the SIG P226 .40SW has the same versatility as the P229. Pickup a .357 SIG barrel and a Bar-Sto barrel and shoot all three bool-its.

    10. #10
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      The recoil is a little more from a 40 compared to a 9mm in most guns. for me I like the 40 as a "9mm isn't enough but a 45 kills my wrist" gun. As to which is better,,,,,? the right round and any of the three will get the job done. I personally love the 45 ACP round but have 9's and 40's that I love to shoot and would feel confident carrying. Shoot them all!..let your hands sort it out..heh Any Sig is a good Sig. And the only thing I like better than owning one is owning two

    11. #11
      Member Growler67's Avatar
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      As far as expense goes, SiG has a program called CPO. Certified Pre-Owned firearms that are mostly department turn-ins that go through an inspection and service process before being put back out on the commercial market. Generally they are about 30% less than the same gun brand new and come with a 1 year warranty. My P220 and P228 are CPO's and have been flawless for me. My P228 has been my CCW for several years now.

    12. #12
      Senior Member Ram Rod's Avatar
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      No feeding issues at all with my P220 full size. I had heard of a couple hitches with the P220 Carry model though. Check into sigforum.com and see what you find. I haven't been there in a while.

    13. #13
      Junior Member 10-Ring's Avatar
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      Hey guy's,Thanks again for all the help!

    14. #14
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      10-Ring,

      If you don't mind reading, I can give you some fact (and opinion) based information on the round controversy so you might draw your own opinion.

      .45 ACP Pros and Cons
      ---------------------
      Muzzle velocity: ~850 - 1350 fps
      - Lower velocity decreases chance of over-penetration

      Chamber pressure: ~21,000+ psi
      - Good for lower "felt recoil" and less violent snapping of the firearm
      - SAAMI certified caliber for +P and +P+ loads which can increase pressure to 23,000 psi or more

      Bullet weight: ~165 - 230 gr.
      - Good for increased bullet energy, at a cost of a heavier ammunition

      Bore diameter: .45 inches
      - Increased forward moving surface area increases chance that all energy will be exerted in target, at a cost of decreased capacity

      Capacity: Variable
      - Large bore round typically has lowest capacity of conventional firearms

      .40 S&W Pros and Cons
      ----------------------
      Muzzle velocity: ~1050 - 1400 fps
      - High velocity, high energy round, sometimes over penetrates

      Chamber pressure: ~35,000 psi
      - Increased felt recoil, creates a more violent "snap" of the weapon
      - NO SAAMI certification for +P and +P+ loads

      Bullet weight: ~135 - 200 gr.
      - Decent weight and high energy

      Bore diameter: .40 inches
      - Significant decrease in bore diameter over the .45 ACP decreases forward moving surface area which will increase penetration, at a gain of greater capacity

      Capacity: Variable
      - .40 S&W only increases bore diameter slightly over 9mm and has a fairly generous capacity in most conventional firearms


      By looking over this chart you should come to the conclusion that there is no "end all, be all" cartridge. Every cartridge in the world has a pro and con to it. At either end of the spectrum there is good and bad things to be said in any category.

      If you were to ask me, I enjoy shooting my .45 more, but I'd probably take a .40 for carry any day of the week.

      Mark~

    15. #15
      Junior Member 10-Ring's Avatar
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      Hello Occram, thanks for the read. Alot of go info I didn't know about. I guess I will check both out this weekend and see which one feels best in my hand. Thank you.

    16. #16
      Member benzuncle's Avatar
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      10-Ring, the best way I've heard the 2 calibers compared is: the 40 S&W snaps; the 45 shoves. Speaking for myself and no one else, I love that shove of a 45. I also really love Sig Sauer firearms. I have yet to shoot one that I did not want to own afterwards. That's the biggest problem with Sigs. They are accurate shooters, and addictive. BTW: if you are purchasing for self defense, a bad guy will never know which caliber thumped him. Good luck to you. Either way, you can't lose.

    17. #17
      Junior Member 10-Ring's Avatar
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      benzuncle, I guess I'll find out tomorrow which one I like better and feels the best in my hand. Thanks for the tip.

    18. #18
      Junior Member 10-Ring's Avatar
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      Ok, I just thought I would let you guy's know I went with the .40 s&w. The 226 just felt better in my hand than the 220. Thanks for all your help.

    19. #19
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      I think you'll be happy with your choice. I love a 45 and that's my round of choice most the time but I also like the 40 round. I think it performs well and the recoil is not bad at all. I have a 226 in 9mm adn a 229 in 40. The 229 is just a little smaller than the 226 and handles the 40 round great. It has been the gun on my best the last couple weeks splitting time with another 40 I have. Good luck and happy shooting!

    20. #20
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      Enjoy you new handgun!

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