Daily Archives: May 30, 2012

What are the PROS and CONS of this handgun?

Sig P239

I saw this image and question posed the other day, the comments were unsettling to say the least. Rating quite heavily on the comments were remarks like; “it’s not a Glock, 1911, American Made.” Very few actually engaged in an objective analysis of the firearm in question. For those of you in Rio Linda it is a Sig Sauer P239 available in 9mm, .357 Sig and .40 S&W. Magazine capacity is 8 and 7 rounds respectively.

The firearm is 6.6 inches long, 5.5 inches high 1.2 inches thick and weighs in at 29.5 ounces unloaded. It is available with standard iron sights or tritium powered night sights, and will set you back somewhere between $700 to $775. Naturally the night sights make the price go north within that range.

On the pro side Sig Sauer pistols are well-known for their reliability, but with this pistol some of its pros may also be cons. It greatly depends on the user. Let’s take a look and see what you think.

Action Double Action/Single Action (DA/SA). This type of action used to be the hallmark of European and more modern American Pistols. The first trigger pull was long and heavy much like a revolver, the second pull was shorter and lighter with some noticeable slack before you got to the actual trigger pull. While the two different trigger pulls were manageable with training and practice, novice shooters will often have their first shot landing some distance away from their subsequent shots.

External Safety, none. Some see this as a feature others as a liability. The gun does have a lever for de-cocking or re-setting the gun so the trigger is back to its DA state. Traditional DA/SA firearms usually have this feature incorporated into slide-mounted safeties as well.

Now to compare it to the S&W Shield the Sig is .4 inches longer, .5 inches taller, .25 inches thicker and weighs 10.5 ounces more. So it’s a little larger and quite a bit heavier. While the size and weight do make it more difficult to conceal that extra size and weight also means the gun is more shootable. The weight helps to keep recoil down and the added length means your sight radius is a bit longer which increases accuracy. The width also means that the recoil will be spread out over a wider area of the palm of your hand, but at the same time that width may make the grip a little too large for some folks.

Personally, if I were restricted to the calibers available for the P239 and needed something of that size I would have no problem carrying it after I had established its mechanical reliability. The same goes for the S&W shield. As for which one I would prefer, that requires range time. Something I don’t get enough of with the guns I do own, much less the ones I don’t.