P220 Questions


March 14, 2009, 01:45 AM
I think I'm going to get a P220 in .45ACP but I have a few quick questions:

Are all p220s (used, new, newer vs older models) created equal? if so any suggestions on prices?

I'm a lefty is that a problem?

Should I get the full size? Any disadvantages to the compact or carry?

Thanks, I appreciate any answers.

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March 14, 2009, 10:37 AM
Howdy. I think that you will find that some of us prefer the older SIGs, the old West German guns with the stamped and pinned slides. The stamped slides were, as I recall, controversial back then, almost on the level of MIM parts today. Since that time many, myself included, have found a preference for those older guns, the difference in them hard to put a finger on. Someone recently said that it is a matter of the older guns having better balance. That may well be it.

That said, I think that no matter the age of a SIG you will find an excellent gun, hopefully without a rail ;) The 220 has consistently been one of the finest production 45's available.

The Lone Haranguer
March 14, 2009, 04:20 PM
I'm a lefty is that a problem?

Not much. You can operate the magazine release button and decocking lever with your trigger finger. (The decocker is only on DA/SA models; DAO and DAK models do not have one, and the SAO has an ambidextrous thumb safety.) The slide stop may give some difficulty. In most cases when reloading from slide lock you can hand rack the slide and not have to use the slide stop.

(This is from my experimentation; I am not left-handed.)

March 14, 2009, 04:49 PM
Check the rails for wear:


Lube them heavily on the underside of the rails as described in the tutorial.


The P220 is very left handed friendly.

Don't use the slide stop unless you're in an administrative situation (such as field stripping the weapon). Therefore, it's a non-issue.


I have both the P220 and P220 Carry. Both are excellent. The P220 Carry, with its 1/2" shorter slide, is a bit easier to carry in the appendix position. The steel slide and rail increase the overall weight, but also serve to balance the weapon quite nicely.

Some reviews:

SIG P220 Revisited

SIG P220 Carry Review

Both guns are very accurate and very reliable. My P220 Carry has a smooth trigger face and a smoother and lighter trigger. Regardless of which you choose, I do recommend you get a smooth trigger face (helps with the double action) and have it tuned (smoothed and lightened).

March 14, 2009, 05:21 PM
The SIG P220 Combat .45 ACP Pistol is a real treat. :)


March 14, 2009, 07:33 PM
The first gun I bought was a 220, brand new about 8 years ago. It has performed excellent. Accurate as hell and dead reliable.

Not sure when the slide change was made, but looking at mine it does have a roll-pin in it. No light rail available when I bought mine.

chris in va
March 15, 2009, 01:04 AM
Zero malfunctions from my older folded 220, save for a trigger return spring replacement. Feeds and ejects everything I've put through it.

March 15, 2009, 01:19 PM
On the older SIGs, dry firing without a Snap-Cap or empty cartridge will eventually result in a broken hammer return spring (hammer goes all floppy on you). It's a low cost part and is easy to fix...so keep one or two onhand if you dry fire. I went through two of them on my first P220 before I figured out the Snap-Cap trick.

Don't dry fire at all without a Snap-Cap on the new guns. The new slides have an extra pin called the firing pin stop pin. The part of the firing pin slamming into it (since the pin goes farther forward on an empty chamber) will break it. Part of that pin will then flop about on the the right side of the slide. Happened to me...but Virginia Arms' SIG armorer fixed it in ten minutes.

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