Sig 238: Carrying cocked and locked vs. not

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    1. #1
      Junior Member
      Join Date
      Sep 2010

      Sig 238: Carrying cocked and locked vs. not

      Would really like some feedback from some of the single action carry folks, please.

      After a ton of research into .380 pocket pistols I decided on and bought a Sig P238 Blackwood, should have it next Wednesday. I looked at all of the other hot .380 pocket pistols on the market today, but fell in love with the look and feel of the single action, Sig P238, even at twice the price of some of the others. My first Sig.

      I plan to carry it in pocket, in a holster.

      I have a few reservations on the 'cocked and locked' part, even though the Sig has a very substantial safety and I don't think it would accidentlally snap off, especially in a holster.

      I've heard both pro and con on carrying a single action pistol, in pocket, cocked and locked.
      Everything from, "You're crazy", to "Not a problem, that's the way they were built and designed".

      So, I joined this forum, hoping to get some feedback from those who know.....

      Should I carry cocked and locked, or not ?

      Thanks for any advise you can lend.

      Rich G.

    2. #2
      Senior Member BeefyBeefo's Avatar
      Join Date
      Jan 2008
      This question is asked a lot. My response is simple:

      If you're not comfortable with it, then take more training and don't carry until you're comfortable with it. A gun that's not ready to go is worthless IMO. All of my weapons are always loaded.

      Not trying to be harsh, just my opinion on the subject.

    3. #3
      VAMarine's Avatar
      Join Date
      Dec 2008
      If you don't want to carry the gun C&L, don't carry a single action auto.

      Here's why.

      Regarding the Sig 238 (and many other SA autos) in order to not carry condition 1 (C&L) you have to carry Condition 2 (round in chamber, hammer down or Condition 3 (Magazine inserted, chamber empty). These are bad ideas for the following reasons.

      Condition 2, you have a round in the chamber and are intentionally pulling the trigger to drop the hammer on a live round. The only time you should be dropping the hammer on a liver round is when you want the gun to go bang. The mechanical safeties are deactivated while dropping the hammer and if you slip, the guns going to go off.

      Earlier 1911s and GI style 1911s were more forgiving of Condition 2 carry with their long spurred hammers. The 238 and many 1911s have smaller hammers which will result in not as much surface area making contact with the thumb and forefinger.

      The Sig manual (1.2) states the following:

      The single action only trigger, in combination with the thumb
      safety, ensures safe carrying of the weapon and provides
      instant readiness when needed.

      The automatic firing pin safety blocks the firing pin unless the trigger is pulled.
      The hammer safety intercept notch prevents the hammer from contacting the firing pin unless the trigger is pulled.

      Never lower the hammer by pulling the trigger and
      attempting to ease the hammer forward manually.
      Manually lowering the hammer is dangerous and
      prevents full application of the pistol’s safety features.
      Accidental discharge could result, causing injury,
      death or damage to property.
      Now regarding pocket carry of the 238, I wouldn't do it. The space between the hammer and the slide acts as a lint trap and the hammer could get obstructed and not make full contact with the firing pin resulting in a weak it/failure to fire.

      Condition 3 will require your off hand to cycle the slide which could be short cycled causing a jam. At least with 1 or 2 there's all ready a round in the chamber at the start.

      If you want to pocket carry a .380, get a LCP, P3AT, NAA Guardian or something else with an enclosed hammer. If you decide to stick with the 238 for pocket carry, be diligent in cleaning out the space between the hammer and slide and be proactive in removing pocket lint from the pocket.

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