Sig P238 Impressions


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Dolph92
February 28, 2010, 07:51 PM
History
The Girlfriend purchased a used LCP about a year ago as a ultra conceal gun. She wanted something small enough to put in a pocket or in a purse. The LCP was OK for a while but ti was a rough shooter for her after about 4 mags her hand would hurt and she wouldnt shoot any more than that. I didnt like ti as it was to small to get more than one finger on the grip. We got the extended mag lip for it and it helped but it was starting to not cycle the best with FTE and FTL every about 15 rounds. She loves her Sig 239 in 9mm so when we saw the P238 it was a natural decision to see what it is like. She ordered up a 2 tone with night sights and waited about a month to get it. It came in last Thursday.
We got the 2 tone with night sights and an extra mag that was in stock for $589. She says it was the best money she has ever spent on her carry gun

Initial Impressions
When I first picked up the gun it felt nice in my hand.It is heavier than an LCP but not nearly as heavy as a full size gun. The girlfriend looked at me when she picked it up and said "it feels like a Sig". The fit and finish was first rate Sig Sauer material. The single mag was of high quality and the mag spring was stiff but loading the mag was easy. I had read there was issue with some of the first guns that wouldnt even chamber a round so I loaded up a mag and chambered some rounds just to see if there was any hangups. There was none and the action was very smooth and the rounds went right up and into the chamber with no problems. Disassembly can be a bit of a pain. Lining up the indent and removing the take down pin is a chore but it's not that hard once you do it a few times. The machining surfaces are smooth and free of burrs and look identical to my 239.The safetly is crisp and has a definate CLICK to it when flipping to and from safe.


Range Impressions
We had 100 rounds of Winchester ball, about 50 rounds of Magtech ball and 40 rounds of Gold Dot. We ran through almost all of it at the first shooting and I was very impressed with how this little pop gun shoots and handles.

It fired and extracted under normal conditions 100%.
The last mag I ran I was purposely limp wristing it to see if I could get it to fail to load or eject it did not fully extract the very last round I shot but I was hardly holding the gun at this point any looser and it would have been on the floor.

It's seems more accurate than the LCP.It's WAY easier to shoot than the LCP as it has real sights on it I was shooting at about 10 yards and it was all in the 10 ring on most shots. It just feels like 10 times the gun of the LCP. The night sights are awesome on this little pocket gun even with the light of the indoor range I could see a slight glow, in the dark they are bright and full. My GF says its pretty :) She used to complain of a sore hand after shooting the LCP. With the 238 she ran probably 75 of the rounds and was ready for more.

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G27RR
February 28, 2010, 09:40 PM
I love mine. Glad you and your GF found a great new gun.

camper
February 28, 2010, 09:43 PM
It is a great pistol. Mine has been flawless.

Gelgoog
February 28, 2010, 09:57 PM
I want one soooo bad.....

Dolph92
March 1, 2010, 12:52 PM
I know I am hooked I want one for this summer when I am running around in shorts and T shirt. This little thing can be hidden in my boxers :P I asked if they had any more and it was a negative. But there is one in my future as well.

swiftak
March 1, 2010, 06:00 PM
Got one a few weeks ago. Really nice.

Rex B
March 1, 2010, 06:02 PM
Same here. got a P238, retired the LCP to "occasional" carry.

the only thing I'd wish for is a DA/SA version. Or maybe a LDA - Para?

dropshot
March 1, 2010, 10:48 PM
my sig p-238 black with rosewood grips and n/s is a flawless little 380

nwilliams
March 1, 2010, 10:56 PM
My friend has had one of the Nitron models for about six months and really loves it, no issues at all so far that I know of.

I have an Equinox model on layaway at my local shop and I can't wait to pay it off so I can bring it home!

Dolph92
February 20, 2011, 08:32 PM
Just wanted to post a followup on this firearm on its purchase anniversary. The wife and I (yes we got hitched in the last year) went to the range today. She has been consistently carrying this gun in her purse or on her person for a year now. She absolutely loves the light weight and conceal-ability of this little gun. She purchased a DeSantis pancake holster not long after they were available and I have to admit this is a nice package to carry super light and under a T shirt it hides

We have had 0 issues since we purchased the gun. It has been 100% flawless with no FTL, FTF, or FTE. We have a few hundred more rounds through it since I last reported, I would say probably 300 or so of various brands,mostly winchester, and Golddots. We clean it each time we take it out to the range and give it a light coat of rem oil but other than that it doesn't really get touched. This gun amazes me every time I shoot it. It's just a whole lot of fun to shoot and you can run a few hundred rounds through it with no pinch or soreness that you can get from some of the lighter pocket guns (remember we replaced a LCP with this gun)

We ran about 100-150 rounds through it today and the thing just kept on popping away.

The mags that we have are the newest design and have been consistent since day one. I really think that those who reported issues on this model had the first models and I agree that there were issues with those first guns. This gun however is not a first run gun it was produced post recall and post mag changes so that probably attributes to its reliability.

There will be a second 238 in our future for sure.

harmon rabb
February 20, 2011, 09:01 PM
I love mine as well. So much nicer a shooter than the other pocket 380's.

omu
February 20, 2011, 09:06 PM
Hi, the wife chiming in. The only problem with this gun is that now I want a second one in black with nice rosewood grips. I would heartily recommend this gun to anyone who will listen. :)

M2 Carbine
February 20, 2011, 11:12 PM
I'm afraid mine is in the junk box along with the .380 Diamondback and Skyy.

Trip back to SIG, new magazines, 5 recoil springs, almost 600 rounds of ammunition, etc, have done nothing to make it even marginally reliable, so it's really useless to me.
Too bad to because I really like the gun.

kokapelli
February 21, 2011, 10:11 AM
Add me to the list of very satisfied P238 owners.

Wait a minute! This can't be right because according to some people this pistol is supposed to be a flawed design:)

Sorry about M2 Carbine's problem. These things seem to occasionally happen with every brand and model of pistol.

benzuncle
February 21, 2011, 12:56 PM
If you've been following the threads on this forum and others, you'll have noticed that the complaints have dropped to almost zero. Now the posts are about way satisfied owners. Initially, my HD had a problem, SIG fixed it promptly and it's been good to go for over 500 rounds. It is very accurate for its intended purpose and if you are an owner or previous owner of any of the other brands of 380ACP pocket guns you will be hard pressed to complain about the recoil of the P238. And the P238 is very easy on the eyes to boot. Some worry about the cocked and locked hammer with no backstrap safety. I'll betcha Plaxico Burris wishes he had been carrying a P238 with its solid safety when he had his unfortunate mishap. :cool:

loneviking
February 21, 2011, 01:01 PM
Whoa...wait, did I read that right that you are just running gun oil on that little gun? :eek:

I'm surprised you're not getting wear spots on the rails. I run synthetic wheel bearing grease on all the rails of any full size Sigs I've had. They shoot much smoother and you don't get wear spots on the rails. I don't know much about this little Sig, but you might try this and see how the gun operates.

Bmont2409
February 21, 2011, 07:29 PM
I love my 238 and would like to have one in each variation. Has had a lot of rounds through it and have about 600 empty brass I will reload and see how it likes them.

Jamesk
February 21, 2011, 07:48 PM
I have a HD model and it likes my reloads as well as anything-95 gr Lead

dryflyelk
February 21, 2011, 07:50 PM
I had one, loved it so much I bought a second one in a flavor I liked a little better. Both have been perfect. I'm a very satisfied customer. The only negative I can say about it is that it only comes with one mag, and the new ones are $40!

Joker19
February 21, 2011, 07:59 PM
My P238 with a serial number of 27AV and above had 8 FTFs and 18 FTE out of 100, then the recoil spring twisted so far it stuck out of the gun. My backup Kel Tec P3AT has never given me a single misfire FTF or FTE in literally thousands of rounds. Until they come up with a serious fix it (P238) will never accompany me as a backup! The spring is little more than a ball point pen spring. I know, there is a fix but my point is why should there have to be one in the first place, you can't tell me they didn't know this would happen! When your life depends on it the term "we are coming up with a fix" simply won't cut it! I simply do not trust it to do what it is supposed to do.

kokapelli
February 21, 2011, 08:21 PM
My P238 with a serial number of 27AV and above had 8 FTFs and 18 FTE out of 100, then the recoil spring twisted so far it stuck out of the gun. My backup Kel Tec P3AT has never given me a single misfire FTF or FTE in literally thousands of rounds. Until they come up with a serious fix it (P238) will never accompany me as a backup! The spring is little more than a ball point pen spring. I know, there is a fix but my point is why should there have to be one in the first place, you can't tell me they didn't know this would happen! When your life depends on it the term "we are coming up with a fix" simply won't cut it! I simply do not trust it to do what it is supposed to do.
I'm not saying you did but it sounds to me like you may have installed the spring backwards. It seems that this has happened to some people and what you described is exactly what happens when the recoil spring is installed backwards.

Dill Man
February 21, 2011, 08:56 PM
P238 is a fantastic little backup handgun. It is more fun at the range than an LCP, but both offer the same capabilities in their respective roll of a backup firearm.

harmon rabb
February 21, 2011, 09:24 PM
P238 is a fantastic little backup handgun. It is more fun at the range than an LCP, but both offer the same capabilities in their respective roll of a backup firearm.

Same capabilities? I think your average shooter would get MUCH better groups with a 238 than a LCP. I should know -- I own both. I am pretty awful with my LCP. With the 238, I'm about as good as I am with a full size. My effective range with the LCP is 5yds or under. With the 238, 15yds or under. That's a huge difference.

LightningMan
February 21, 2011, 09:39 PM
Dolph92, you are near the point (300 rounds+) where most of my recoil springs began to fail, these were of the old style (tappered round coil spring) I went through 3 original springs + 1 colt mustang wolf spring before I got the new flat coil spring from Sig. This newer spring has been the answer for my P238, as I would not consider carrying it before, but now I have confidence in it's ability to function when needed. I would recommend if you don't already have the newer spring, call Sig and have them send you some. It will be free and you should have some spare springs anyway. LM

omu
February 21, 2011, 11:33 PM
Harmon, I agree with you. I was handy with my LCP, but the sights and the feel of the gun make me even more effective with my 238 in my opinion. Well, plus I don't cringe at the thought of my hand getting killed with each shot like I did with my LCP.

wally
February 22, 2011, 12:08 AM
Mine as never failed to feed but its never gone more than a single magazine without failing to go fully into battery :( I reduced the extractor tension a little and it made minor difference, but introduced extraction failures I'd never had before.

Looks like I'll be trying to send mine back for repair, hope they pay shipping ....

It is by far the most comfortable small .380 I've ever shot, the nice SA trigger and good sights make it a great shooter too. I could love it if it worked.

Dolph92
February 22, 2011, 12:23 AM
How many rounds through it? What mags you got there are 3 version from what I have heard. We have version 2 mags that we got with the gun and from Sig and I don't have any issues.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jrMybC0p0-k

Good link about the mags bear with it they get to the mags as well as some of the other known issues with the first guns.

Joker19
February 22, 2011, 10:03 AM
No the spring was installed correctly (small end to the rear) and assembled correctly. Talked to SSI today and they say the old spring is NOT recommended anymore and is being replaced by a flat. Also what happened is the spring in the magazine came out and jammed in the breech. They are sending a new magazine since they stated that some of them are prone to this. I really do not trust this gun for what I do, but it is fun at the range! I would never, ever put my life on the line with a P238, simple as that. If someone wants to carry it as a concealed then go for it, I will not!

AK103K
February 22, 2011, 10:54 AM
Same capabilities? I think your average shooter would get MUCH better groups with a 238 than a LCP. I should know -- I own both. I am pretty awful with my LCP. With the 238, I'm about as good as I am with a full size. My effective range with the LCP is 5yds or under. With the 238, 15yds or under. That's a huge difference.
Im not sure what an "average" shooter is, but I would think if anyone put a little practice in, as they should anyway, they wouldnt have trouble with either. I've owned and shot both quite a bit, and both do about the same when shot "realistically".

If youre "target" shooting, and trying to shoot little groups at bullseye targets, theres no doubt the P238 will do a little better, as it does have better sights. Even so, the LCP can shoot groups too, if you want.

I have no troubles making good "hits" on targets at 15 yards with my LCP, and in fact, I shoot about the same at the same distance with my Seecamp, and it has no sights.

While the sights are nice on the P238, and the LCP's nubs are still effective, they are by no means even necessary for this type of gun, whos likely use is point blank, last ditch type use anyway.

I really do not trust this gun for what I do, but it is fun at the range! I would never, ever put my life on the line with a P238, simple as that. If someone wants to carry it as a concealed then go for it, I will not!
I agree. I wont go as far as say its was fun at the range though, as mine was pretty frustrating.

If youre lucky enough to have one that works, and you trust it, have at it.

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