Sig came into greater prominence when one of its guns, the P226 was pitted against the Beretta 92 in field tests for use by the US armed forces. The Beretta went on to win the contract. It wasn’t that the Sig was unreliable but that the Sig cost more. And with that Beretta received a huge boost in sales while Sig played second fiddle. However Sig would redeem itself later when the Army chose the Sig P228 to be under limited conditions such as by those who would be in tanks.
Sig never hit it big. Probably the reason for its less than stellar popularity had been its cost which means police departments couldn’t afford them which in turn means the public has limited awareness of them.
The Sig was the gun I wanted at that time despite its hefty price. Much to my dismay, a few years later the retail price of the P228 dropped. Up to that time, it was the only gun that I had bought that dropped in price.
The alloy frame gun came with Trijicon night sights. The slide consisted of heavy sheet metal with a machined breech block pinned in place. Despite this cheap sounding manufacturing technique, the gun oozed quality. This same method of manufacturing the heavier recoiling 229 40 S&W would not work and in turn 229 slides were machined from a single block of steel.
At the time, I believed the P228 would be a keeper for life and I had it sent off to Robar for the NP3 finish. The finish appeared to do the job of providing corrosion protection for the gun but the job was not done right the first time. The breech face may not have been properly prepared as I had noticed a small sliver of finish stripped near the firing pin after firing a few rounds.
To be candid I really didn’t like the feel of the NP3 finish as I felt it was too slippery for the grip and the grip on the 228 was already on the blocky side, which didn’t help matters.
The P228 would be the first gun that I purchased that used double stack magazines and I was curious how that would affect feed reliability. The P228 was 100% reliable and never had a failure to feed through several hundred rounds. It was also a very accurate gun, maybe because I focused on getting good groups and “willed” the gun to get good groups. The double action trigger was smooth and relatively lightweight but it seemed somewhat disconnected, kind of like driving a car with power steering that doesn’t provide enough road feel.
I enjoyed shooting the Sig but with time I became concerned with it getting dinged up and it was relegated to the status of safe queen. I ended showing a friend my collection and he in turn bought the 228 along with the Milt Sparks IWB Executive holster from me. I miss the quality of both the P228 and the holster but passing both along in the long run was the right thing to do.