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  1. #1
    camss69's Avatar
    camss69 is offline Junior Member
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    New Guy, 226 or 229

    Hi, I'm new and had a couple questions if someone has time to answer.

    I'm looking at getting my first handgun, I was in the military and have experience with the beretta.

    My dad just bought a S&W M&P 9mm which I shot last weekend and kind of stirred up the interest again. For not shooting in 6 years I was pretty happy with how I did.

    I was asking around some guys I work with who are into guns and all three of them recommended the 229 individually which I thought was kind of odd.

    I was looking at the 229 but I see it's a shorter barrel than the 226, what are the advantages or disadvantages to the shorter barrel. I kind of like the longer barrel better but I have yet to find a place that has both in stock so I can compare them side by side. Is there any difference between the two other than barrel length?

    I also see the all the elite models are not california compliant, why is that? I don't see what's different in the Elite models other than colors and grips.

    I'm looking at the Sigs because they were recommended to me, seem to be high quality and seem to be accurate from what I've read. I'm trying to find a range to rent them and try them out but so far have not had a chance to shoot them. I want something that is good quality that can be a good "only gun" if I end up with just one. I'll mainly be using it for target practice at the range on weekends, (or after work since I live 3 miles from a range) teaching my wife to shoot, and home defense.

    What's the difference with the DAK trigger, can't seem to figure that one out.

    Sorry if those are basic questions that have been asked a million times but now that I have someone to go shooting with it's time to do the research and go play! The sig website is kind of lacking in explination info.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    P97
    P97 is offline Member
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    Welcome to the Board !!!

  3. #3
    Baldy's Avatar
    Baldy is offline Senior Member
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    Welcome from down in the swamp. They'll be some of the Sig shooters along to help you out. Good luck as they are great guns.

  4. #4
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    First of all, welcome aboard.
    California eh? Here's my .02.
    The 229 is designed as a CCW piece. Do you expect to be able to carry it? I understand getting the permit is nearly impossible, with a few exeptions.
    The 226 is a "service" piece and would probably be better as a house and range gun.

  5. #5
    TexasFats is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by drummin man 627 View Post
    First of all, welcome aboard.
    California eh? Here's my .02.
    The 229 is designed as a CCW piece. Do you expect to be able to carry it? I understand getting the permit is nearly impossible, with a few exeptions.
    The 226 is a "service" piece and would probably be better as a house and range gun.
    What he said. Actually, you won't go wrong with either one. Let me give you one word of warning. SIG's are habit forming. One is never enough.

  6. #6
    camss69's Avatar
    camss69 is offline Junior Member
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    Thanks for the welcome, yeah I'm in CA, sucks for gun owners I know, I really like the Elite models they look really good but I guess I can't get one here. I don't think I can carry it because like you said the permits are very hard to get in CA.

    Stopped by the local Sportsman's Warehouse on the way home.

    I checked out the 226, 229, Springfield XD and the Glock.

    I wasn't real impressed with the Glock, the XD felt pretty good, and I liked the 226.

    I called the range by my house on the drive home from there and they have all for rent but I think I'm going to try the 226 and the XD this weekend.

    If this ends up being anything like my other hobbies I'm sure I'll end up with more than one.

  7. #7
    truman565 is offline Member
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    I had the same exact dilema yesterday but ended up going with a P226 Navy. The P229 was a nice gun and only slightly cheaper than the P226 the store had but I went with the P226 because it felt better in my hand. I put the P229 on top of the P226 to get an idea of how much more compact the p229 was. The answer is not much. The P229 seems to be a little shorter in the grip and barrel. Maybe an 1in or so in the barrel and not much in the grip length. Both guns felt great and I must have held both guns about 50 times each before I finally made up my mind but I realized that I was not likely to carry the gun on me and the 226 just felt a little better in my hand. Good luck with your choice. Its not an easy one because they are both cool guns.

    SIG's are habit forming. One is never enough.
    He said it. Even though I picked the 226 I'll probably end up getting a 229 eventually.

    I called the range by my house on the drive home from there and they have all for rent but I think I'm going to try the 226 and the XD this weekend.
    I tried both os those same guns this past weekend before I bought my Sig yesterday. I was very impressed with both.

  8. #8
    SigZagger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by camss69 View Post
    I checked out the 226, 229, Springfield XD and the Glock.

    I wasn't real impressed with the Glock, the XD felt pretty good, and I liked the 226.

    I think you've picked your favorite, the Sig 226. The differences are minor, i.e., a half inch barrel length and a larger grip. Sigs are tanks, so if you find an used one it should be reliable and much cheaper than a NIB model. I paid $500.00 for my used 229. I must admit, I do prefer the Sig brand, but the prices are wayyyyyy high compared to other quality made firearms.

  9. #9
    JeffWard's Avatar
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    DAK (Double Action Kellerman) is a Double Action Only pistol with a lighter pull than the 12lb double action pull on a normal 229. Both the standard 229 and 226 come in DA/SA (double action/single action).

    Not sure why the Elite would be illegal in CA??? Both guns come with high-capacity clips, but I assume you have a 10-shot limit with both.

    Jeff

  10. #10
    camss69's Avatar
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    Yep we are limited to 10 rounds.

    I asked the guy about the Elite not being approved and he said it was because Sig must not have submitted them for approval. He said every single different one must be submitted even if they are the same model. Kind of dumb if you ask me but I guess another way for CA to make more money.

    The XD felt pretty dang good as well, and it was $210 cheaper, there were two guys behind the counter, a "new guy" who said he really likes the XD and a guy that has obviously been around a while that liked the Sig.

    Don't know if I can wait for the weekend I might just run down there tomorrow and shoot em both.

    I'm actually leaning towards the 226 Navy, I will probably have to do a special order on it. I'm prior Navy so it kind of appeals to me even though it's an extra $50 for an anchor on the side.

    So far I've seen a 229 Equinox for $919, a plain 226 for $739, and a 226 DAK for $750. Do those prices sound close to normal?

    Thanks for the replies!

  11. #11
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    Congratulations and condolences on your potential choice of a SIG. They are incredible weapons, and they're incredibly addictive. I bought my first one last March; I bought SIG number seven today. My kid's inheritance is disappearing quickly.

    First: P226 vs P229. As other posters have said, not much difference. Look on the SIGARMS website for specifics. I have four sizes of SIG: P220, P226, P229 and P239. Both the P220 and P226 are "duty" size weapons. They're a tad smaller than a 1911, but the P226 is fatter due to its double-column magazine capability. Sorry about your being in CA - if it's any consolation, the mag capacity of both the P226 and the P229 in .40 S&W is just 12 rounds, so your 10-round limit doesn't cut much off. But you can get as high as 17 rounds in a flush-fit Mec-Gar 9mm for the P226.

    Second: it's a personal preference kind of thing, but I think the size of the P229 is PERFECT for an OWB carry piece. The slightly smaller dimensions just feel more "right" in my hand. It's NOT a CCW piece, IMO. However:

    Third: My P229 is an Elite in .40 S&W, which kinda skews my opinion of it. In my 30+ years of shooting, and having owned more than 100 firearms in that time, the P229 Elite is the finest firearm I've ever owned. The SRT (Short Reset Trigger) allows for faster follow-up shots in SA mode, and the controversial beavertail allows faster shot-to-shot recovery time so you can take max advantage of the SRT's capabilities.

    Fourth: if I remember California rules correctly, the Atty General's office has to bless each handgun model individually for sale. The Elite models are relatively new, and the AG simply may not have gotten to it yet. There's certainly nothing more "sinister" about the Elite; other than the SRT and beavertail, it's just a gussied-up DA/SA SIG. But the devil is in the details. IF the AG is about to grant ecumenical approval to the Elite models soon; and IF you can and are willing to pay the freight; then the Elite is worth waiting for.

    Fifth: the DAK is an amazing piece of engineering, but only if you want DAO. The slide moving against the hammer pre-cocks the hammer just a bit. Somehow, that cuts the DAO trigger pull weight down dramatically.

    Sixth: since you're in CA, you might want to look also at the P220 (.45 ACP) and the P239 (9mm and .40 S&W). All are limited to 7 or 8 rounds because they've got single-column magazines. That also makes them narrower than the P226 and P229. The P239 is SIG's answer for a CCW weapon. I have two P239s and I think they're wonderful. But they're also bank-vault solid like all SIGs, which makes them a bit heavy for a CCW piece.

    Seventh: the prices you've listed seem roughly on par with what I've seen in Arizona. You mention the P226 Navy: great gun - research it further. It's 9mm only, but the internals are supposed to be all phosphated to give it extra durability in a salt environment. If I didn't already have a 9mm P226, the Navy is the next one I'd want. Of course, since when did I try justifying acquiring another SIG?

    As I said, I'm up to seven SIGs. I also own five Glocks. IMO, owning a Glock is like owning a Snap-On brand tool: it's top quality and works every time, but it sits in the garage when not in use. A SIG, on the other hand, is an elegant piece of machinery that you pass down to your kids. If it was a fish, you'd stuff it and hang it on the mantle.

  12. #12
    Mike Barham's Avatar
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    Being a Glock guy, I have nothing to add, but wanted to compliment sfmittels' excellent and very informative post. Great information!
    Employed by Galco Gunleather - www.galcogunleather.com / Veteran OEF VIII

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  13. #13
    scorpiusdeus's Avatar
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    Note that sfmittels has only been a Sig guy for less than a year and he already has seven and gives a great run down. Being a Sig owner does that to ya.

    I've owned and shot Sigs for almost 20 years. I've sold them off to buy other guns, but I always come back to Sig.

    I own 2 P226s and I love them. Some of your decision may depend on the "use" of the weapon. Is it for CCW or the range and Home defense?

    If the latter 2 I'd say just go with the P226.

    I live in Ventura County CA and work in L.A. so if there is anything I can help you with let me know.

  14. #14
    SigZagger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JeffWard View Post
    Both guns come with high-capacity clips,...... Jeff
    Magazines...magazines, not clips!

  15. #15
    JeffWard's Avatar
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    my bad.... no "clip" involved...

    hahaha

    PS... Have you looked at the the P220 Target/Range model???

  16. #16
    jeffie's Avatar
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    Sig 226 X-five fiels grade

    try out the 226 x-five competition

    Jeff

  17. #17
    SigZagger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffie View Post
    try out the 226 x-five competition

    Jeff
    Yikes Jeff, don't confuse the poor guy anymore. He can't decide between the 226 or 229 and now you're having him look at a mercedes 226. She is a sweet gun.

  18. #18
    camss69's Avatar
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    I looked at the x-five, juuust a little out of my price range.

    Thanks to all who have replied, it's been really helpful.

    I don't know if it's just the dealers in my area or if everywhere is like this but none of them seem to want to do a "special order". Two places just flat out said no, one said sure but it will be more than retail, and the third said they would but it will take 15 days.

    I'm leaning towards a 9mm to keep the cost of ammo down, so I did look at the 220's but they are all .45's.

    Right now I'm thinking the little anchor on the side isn't worth an extra $110 so I think I'm going to end up with the plain 226. I did find a two tone for $919 today but I found the plain 226 for $739.

    Thanks sfmittels for your detailed response!

    Ok so new-b question, what's the difference between a clip and a mag?

  19. #19
    Mike Barham's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by camss69 View Post
    Ok so new-b question, what's the difference between a clip and a mag?
    Generally speaking, a magazine has a spring and a clip does not. As examples a Navy man might know, the M14 and M16 rifles use magazines, while the M1 Garand uses clips.
    Employed by Galco Gunleather - www.galcogunleather.com / Veteran OEF VIII

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  20. #20
    SigZagger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by camss69 View Post
    I don't know if it's just the dealers in my area or if everywhere is like this but none of them seem to want to do a "special order". Two places just flat out said no, one said sure but it will be more than retail, and the third said they would but it will take 15 days.
    I had the same problem. Awhile back I ordered (from a large local dealer) an upgraded SigSauer P226. After numerous weeks, past the "it should be in today" date, I cancelled my order. I took the money and special ordered a S&W PC 952. It also went past the "in" date, but I still have it. I will not special order a firearm again.

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