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Thread: P220 or 226/229

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2011

    P220 or 226/229

    I originally thought I wanted a P226 9mm because a friend has one and it has such a legendary reputation and I would be happy with one, but a few things are swirling around that I want to think through. I own a Ruger Mark II .22 pistol for target practice and a Beretta shotgun for clay pigeons, etc. I am looking for a fun toy to bridge the gap and for home defense.

    1. The new gun will be for limited range time (3-6 times per year)

    2. I thought 9mm would be a great round because it is readily available, cheap and effective, but I am getting caliber conscious - I like in California so 10 rounds max anyway

    3. .40 is a nice upgrade to 9mm and I can handle the recoil, but it is a little snappy - I like it though

    4. I can handle a large gun (6 foot / 195lbs)

    5. I like the grip of a single stack gun - very comfortable

    6. Not going to conceal the gun and the 220 is not much bigger than a 226...

    Now I'm thinking for the amount of times I shoot the ammo cost is really not a factor, BIG GUN = BIG FUN, 45 stopping power, feels good in my hands, ammo will be around and I will never feel the need to upgrade

    Are there any CONS about the P220? Accuracy issues? Reliability? Bad resale (I see lower prices pre owned than 226/229)?

    Is there a no brainer better gun in 45 I am overlooking?

    What are the best years / models?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Johnson City, Tennessee
    Well, I have an older model 220 and love it. I'm saving up for a 226 to join it as a stable mate, just because. YMMV.

  3. #3
    VAMarine's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    If you're not concerned about carry, there is really no reason to get a 229. As for the 220/226, they are the same size. Only the grip will be a little different to accommodate the double stack mag. of the 226. Now regarding 9mm vs .40 vs. .45...there really isn't much difference in terminal effect. Personally, I don't care for the .40 and I know of several renowned training persons/entities that agree so for me it boils down to 9mm vs. .45ACP. As you're in Cali, the big pro of the 226 over the 220 (capacity) no longer applies as there are 10rd mags available for the 220. This is a hard choice as they are both great guns and cant go wrong either way.

    As for which models / years. I'd opt for an "Elite" model if you don't mind the beavertail frame. If you don't like the beavertail just opt for the regular plain-jane 220/226. Sig has all those neat little packages but it's all a matter of preference as most of the differences are cosmetic however some functional differences do exist, things like sights, trigger parts and some front strap treatments etc. Looking at the CA DOJ approved handgun list, I don't see the "Elite" models (other than the 229 Enhanced Elite) listed but they just not be listed as such...

    As far as years go, a lot of people are reporting some issues with the later models of Sigs and are recommending going with the older guns, but I still prefer the US made guns for their milled slides, they just seem to have a little more heft to them, enough that I found an easier time tracking the sights on the newer guns.

    Sig is now importing an all German made 226, if that is to be available in CA, I'd probably get one.

    Regarding alternate choices in .45, if you want a DA/SA or DAO .45, the Sig is damn hard to beat. If you want SAO, I still find the 1911 to be "better" than the Sig 220 SAO, but that's just my opinion. If the trigger of the 220 SAO was cleaned up / improved just a little it might be a different story.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Southwest Arizona
    I own all three, 220, 226 & 229. My 226 is my most used SIG. I got it in .40S&W so I could change the barrel to 357SIG and have added a Bar-Sto 9mm one also.
    So that is a plus....
    I like that the 220 & 226 are the same size wise....
    Get what feels best for You.... VA make some very good points...


  5. #5
    Junior Member postmaster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    I have the 226, bought it in July. Love it. It is a very accurate reliable pistol and the finish was perfect. The 9mm round is almost as deadly as .45 and the ammo is a lot cheaper. A big plus is you can get 15 rounds shot off with each magazine without reloading.

    Hint; if you get the 226, also get a mag loader because without it you can't get over 6 rounds in a Sig mag without killing your fingers.

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