Which pistol to carry?


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Dr_B
September 29, 2011, 11:56 AM
I have two pistols that I shoot well and can carry/conceal comfortably. I like carrying each one, but they are different platforms and I'm wary of switching back and forth between them.

So, what do people here think? Which one would you carry if you had the choice between the two and you could comfortably carry and conceal either one?

Sig Sauer P226, 9mm, 15 rounds.

Sig Sauer 1911 C3, .45 ACP, 7 rounds.

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Lawdawg45
September 29, 2011, 12:00 PM
Doc, you failed to mention what the 2 pistols were! Help us make an informed choice:rolleyes:

LD

Doc, the survey just popped up:cuss:

TwoWheelFiend
September 29, 2011, 12:03 PM
If you had both on a table in front of you and you had to grab one.......

451 Detonics
September 29, 2011, 12:37 PM
Most gunfights are over in a couple rounds...which do you shoot the best?

Supertac45
September 29, 2011, 01:04 PM
The 226 is flawless. I can't say the same for their 1911.

Dr_B
September 29, 2011, 03:25 PM
I tend to shoot both guns very well. I'm maybe slightly more accurate with the 226, but I've had it longer and put more rounds through it during practice. Neither gun has ever had problems jamming with factory ammo. They're both reliable and great-looking guns. Honestly it's really a champagne problem. I just hate to leave one of them at home all the time.

keenshooter
September 29, 2011, 04:52 PM
I like the compact size of the 226, its very similar to my favorite carry gun a HK uspc 9mm

Dr_2_B
September 29, 2011, 05:24 PM
I voted for the 226, not because I necessarily prefer the 9mm over the 45, but because I believe it's a better manual of operation than the 1911 style. Many may flame me for this, but I just believe the double action/single action of the 226 is a better platform than the cocked-and-locked approach.

I never had an experience where my thumb safety inadvertently came off-safe, but I always felt the fear that it could do so somehow while I carried it.

Others will no-doubt say I'm crazy.

Steve CT
September 29, 2011, 09:07 PM
I don't have the same 2 pistols, but I do have pretty much the same choices: S&W Model 59 9mm and a DW 1911 Pointman. I love shooting the 1911, but the nod almost always goes to the hi-cap 9mm for carry

orionengnr
September 29, 2011, 10:45 PM
Understand that my choice reflects my preferences, and that may have very little to do with what works for you.

I shoot a 1911 better than anything else. That makes the decison an easy one for me.

Once again, what works for me may not work for you.

The_Armed_Therapist
September 30, 2011, 08:47 AM
My .02 is if you want a 1911, go with a company whose strength is the 1911 (Colt, Springfield, Kimber). If you want a 9mm, go with a company whose strength is the 9mm (Sig).

Fatelvis
September 30, 2011, 08:49 AM
This is a difficult question, as they are both excellent weapons and I would feel equally protected with either. That being said, I think I would still go with the larger caliber .45.

The_Armed_Therapist
September 30, 2011, 08:49 AM
OOPS... You said you already own both. LOL... Sorry I misread.

SC_Slowhand
September 30, 2011, 09:27 AM
I'd go with the 9mm before the .45 Caliber. If you've got a problem with switching go with the one you're more "comfortable" with.

Most of the time, I carry a Sig P-239, 9mm or a Ruger SP101, .357 Caliber, usually with a Ruger LCP .380 for a BUG. When it comes to concealed carry where I'm going, how I'm dressed and the weather determine what I carry.

BossHogg
September 30, 2011, 11:59 AM
I would carry that Sig C 3 everywhere I go. I drool everytime I see one, just a beautiful gun and a perfect CCW size. It's very high on my want gotta have list.

Creature
September 30, 2011, 12:14 PM
I like both but would pick the 226 without hesitation. I prefer DA/SA for a CCW ...and the 9mm over 45ACP because of my ability to make faster and more accurate follow-up shots with the 9mm. Besides, the 226 has double the magazine capacity.

David E
September 30, 2011, 01:29 PM
Do you carry the 1911 cocked and locked? If not, then carry the Sig (if you carry that chamber loaded)

When you say shoot the 226 better, "better" how?

Does your practice include firing the 226 from DA to SA? How fast can you do that? How are the hits? How do they compare to the 1911?

If you set up an IPSC target at 5 yds starting from high ready, how do they compare in time and hits? (Sig hammer down start, 1911 starts cocked and locked)

jad0110
September 30, 2011, 03:00 PM
I'm maybe slightly more accurate with the 226, but I've had it longer and put more rounds through it during practice.

I think you answered your own question right there. You have a slight accuracy edge and a fair degree more time on the 226, so that is what I'd carry were I in your shoes.

For me, between those 2 choices, I'd go 1911 simply because I shoot them better.

Dr_B
September 30, 2011, 03:59 PM
Do you carry the 1911 cocked and locked? If not, then carry the Sig (if you carry that chamber loaded)

When you say shoot the 226 better, "better" how?

Does your practice include firing the 226 from DA to SA? How fast can you do that? How are the hits? How do they compare to the 1911?

I carry each pistol with a round in the chamber; the 1911 is cocked and locked.

I shoot the 226 slightly better in terms of accuracy when I'm shooting at steel targets at 25 yards. At 7 yards or less from a target my groups are paper plate sized or smaller with either pistol.

My range practice for any carry gun includes firing two-handed, right-only, left-only, sometimes firing from the ground, and firing from cover behind obstacles. With the 226, I always start DA.

I like the higher round count in the 226, but that isn't essential. I am comfortable with 7 + 1 .45 ACP.

BossHogg
September 30, 2011, 04:12 PM
DrB , on the SIG C3. I was wanting to know if it fits a 1911 holster? I heard the early ones wouldn't and you had to find one made for Sig 1911.

Jath
September 30, 2011, 04:22 PM
Carry them both. Pull the 1911 first, and when that one is out of ammo or craps out on you, switch.

David E
September 30, 2011, 05:05 PM
Ok, you shoot the 226 slightly better slowfire...which do you shoot better/faster 7 yds and closer?

Most people will shoot the 1911 better/faster under those circumstances.

If you're truly equally fast and accurate with either one, then it's more personal preference, but again, the 1911 carries better for most people.

I wouldn't base my decision on the fact I'm slightly better shooting plates at 25 yds slowfire with one over the other.

Dr_B
September 30, 2011, 08:41 PM
DrB , on the SIG C3. I was wanting to know if it fits a 1911 holster? I heard the early ones wouldn't and you had to find one made for Sig 1911.

I carry the C3 in a Bianchi #3S Pistol Pocket for a Colt Commander. The C3 has officer grips on a commander frame, so it still fits the holster (or the holster fits the gun).

Ok, you shoot the 226 slightly better slowfire...which do you shoot better/faster 7 yds and closer?

I want to say I shoot them both about the same rapid fire at 7 yards. I have paper targets from doing that on different occasions. But I should take the two pistols out and try them back-to-back specifically testing for grouping at that distance.

Weevil
September 30, 2011, 09:52 PM
Honestly there's not much difference between the two other than caliber and capacity.


Both are big heavy all-steel duty pistols more designed for open holster carry than as CCW pistols.

6 of of one a half dozen of the other, my edge would go to the 1911 as I'm quite familiar with that platform, but if I was experienced with the P226 and shot it equally well I might give it the edge due to the extra capacity.



Flip a coin, it's not as if you're gonna be naked and vulnerable if you choose one instead of the other, they're both fine weapons.

scaatylobo
September 30, 2011, 10:06 PM
I "know" that ALL gunfights and attacks are over in "2.3" rounds.

But I have seen enough and read enough to believe that it "possible" to have more than one perp and therefore need more than 2.3 rounds.

I do carry a 1911 and when I do ,I also carry at least 2 spare mags.

My EDC is either a Glock 23 [ .40 S&W ] or a Glock 19 [ 9 MM ] ,AND for them I carry at least one spare mag.

Better to be tried by twelve ,etc.

Thatguy686
September 30, 2011, 11:54 PM
ok heres the deal more so than anything is how much training have you had because like scaatylobo said theres always a chance for more than one assailant and in my opinion your far more likely to have a group of 2-4 guys try to beat and rob you possibly beat to death than have one person pull gun on you for some reason they think its less time if they dont use a gun anyways in a high adrenaline situation you WILL NOT put every shot on target i guarentee it so the question is if theres 3 assailants i like to average 3-5 shots per target so i know i have enough rounds to eliminate the threat i myself carry a sig p226 with a mecgar 18 round magazine and one in the chamber total of 19 rounds an the mag sits flush also another thing to consider is yes it is nice to have a back up magazine as many have mentioned but if i am in a gunfight with someone and i have 19 rounds and they have 8 if we both live past 8 rounds they are now trying to reload or are empty and i still have 11 rounds to difuse the situation without having to reload and vice versa if you have 8 rounds and 3 assailants 5 rounds each your only at one definate hit and then have to reload what if they 2 left have the 19 round magazines......your now in a horrible situation your doing a reload that will in no way be as smooth as one you may have practiced so long story short i have a sig p226 9mm with 18 round mecgar flush fit magazine by the way they also make 20 rounders for the 226 but i carry it over my 1911 but i do tend to carry my sig p220 compact alot which is only 8+1 that said i have considered the risk and carry the 220 usualy when the 226 with 19 rounds of ammo is to heavy (no belt etc) hope this helps keep in mind if they have to reload and you dont you have a huge upper hand and may encounter a situation where you have to decide to shoot or convince them to drop their firearm which may be hard to justify to yourself if they just tried to kill you but just keep that in mind

Inebriated
October 1, 2011, 05:01 AM
P226. I hate 9mm, but I would take it over the 1911 because I just don't like having a safety on a defensive handgun. If it were P226 vs. P220, I'd take the P220 in a heartbeat.

waidmann
October 1, 2011, 09:27 AM
Neither, I wouldn't mind either as a truck gun. To carry I'd pass on the weight of either. And, as an upclose and personal I want a pull-point-pull proposition. No additional steps desired.

Yes, I realize the OP was either-or.

pisc1024
October 1, 2011, 10:48 AM
I voted for the 226, not because I necessarily prefer the 9mm over the 45, but because I believe it's a better manual of operation than the 1911 style. Many may flame me for this, but I just believe the double action/single action of the 226 is a better platform than the cocked-and-locked approach.

I never had an experience where my thumb safety inadvertently came off-safe, but I always felt the fear that it could do so somehow while I carried it.

Others will no-doubt say I'm crazy.

I'm with you 100% on this one. I feel that the amount of training required to be as proficient with a 1911 platform is more than what would be required of a sig 226. Many people say that this unit or that SWAT team runs the 1911, but they forget to mention that these guys are paid big bucks to train with these weapons, it's their job. For some one who isn't paid for that, the 226 is the way to go. Besides the SAS uses the 226, and I don't hear them complaining about it.:D

ArchAngelCD
October 2, 2011, 05:52 AM
I never had an experience where my thumb safety inadvertently came off-safe, but I always felt the fear that it could do so somehow while I carried it.
And if the safety did somehow "come off safe" what about the grip safety? Even if the manual safety was disengaged you can not fire a 1911 without depressing the grip safety.

Mr. Browning did not include the manual safety in his original design, it was added at the request of the military. Mr. Browning did not believe a manual safety was needed because of the grip safety but who wouldn't add one to secure a huge military contract?

Dr_B
October 2, 2011, 01:17 PM
I've never found the manual safety on my Sig C3 in the "off" position in my holster. It has something to do with the size of the safety sticking out. If I wear my Metro Arms 1911 in the same holster, I will eventually find the safety off. But the safety lever on the C3 is much smaller (as is the slide stop lever) and it just doesn't get hit by the holster.

The manual safety doesn't bother me. I think it needs to be there. The .45 has a 4lb trigger pull, while the 226 has about a 10lb trigger pull on the first shot.

The direction the poll is going is interesting. I thought people would jump on .45ACP as a carry caliber. However the 226 is a nice gun; they both are.

bikerdoc
October 2, 2011, 04:32 PM
Doc,
I didnt vote cause Im in more of a dillema than you. I got 5 revolvers and 4 autos that I shoot well. I cant decide what to carry so I just rotate them based on mood. This has been bothering me since 1966 and Im 63 :)

Just so the humorless among us dont get their draws in a wad that was a feeble attempt at self depricating humor

Dr_B
October 2, 2011, 08:58 PM
You know, I've been thinking of just keeping a quarter on my bedside table and flipping it each morning! Heads, the 226; tails, the 1911.

usmccpl
October 2, 2011, 10:04 PM
I voted 226. No handgun is a guarenteed one shot stopper. Or even a 2 shot stopper. If it takes 3 rounds to put the attacker down and there are 3 or more attackers the 1911 is empty and the 226 still has have a mag. Me myself would never carry a primary sidearm with fewer than 11 rounds.

David E
October 3, 2011, 01:29 PM
I "know" that ALL gunfights and attacks are over in "2.3" rounds.

Well, no you don't. The 2.3 - 2.7 rds fired in a defensive situation is WRONG. Why? Because the stat gatherers stupidly lumped all "shots fired" together. It includes such things as suicides, warning shots, accidental discharges, animal put-downs, etc. Those categories typically only involve ONE shot being fired, severely skewing the shots fired in defensive situations downward.

Flipping a coin each day to select your daily carrygun is not a good idea. Your hand needs to "know" what gun grip it'll find during the draw and what to do once found. To make matters worse, one gun has a thumb safety that must be disengaged before it'll fire, the other one does not. The consequences of such foolishness should be readily apparent.

Flip it once, carry that gun for at least a month before flipping another coin.

Dr_B
October 3, 2011, 08:08 PM
Flipping a coin each day to select your daily carrygun is not a good idea. Your hand needs to "know" what gun grip it'll find during the draw and what to do once found. To make matters worse, one gun has a thumb safety that must be disengaged before it'll fire, the other one does not. The consequences of such foolishness should be readily apparent.

You know, my comment about flipping a coin was intended as a somewhat humorous remark. The entire reason for posting this thread was exactly due to my reluctance to switch between guns.

David E
October 3, 2011, 08:20 PM
Some people DO swap guns daily, regardless of operating mechanisms. That's plain foolish.

In your case, if you're still undecided, flip a coin and go forth boldly!

Dr_B
October 4, 2011, 02:02 PM
Here is the P226 in question.
http://i382.photobucket.com/albums/oo270/moscowhousehunt/newgrips1.jpg

daytodaze
October 4, 2011, 04:41 PM
What's that old saying?

"if I cant do it in 7, I'm going to get shot while wishing I had a bigger magazine."

I vote p226... But my vote is hypocritical, as my carry gun holds 9.

waidmann
October 4, 2011, 11:15 PM
I vote for point and pull with no extra steps.

jba11ey
October 6, 2011, 11:35 PM
150422
This is what I carry. 15+1 10 mm

Kangaroo under arm.

cochise
October 7, 2011, 03:51 PM
My vote is for the 1911. Two years using one in the military and one on a NRA pistol team, I am comfortable with the 1911. My wife took my 226 I never use it, I hate the trigger. Use the one you are most comfortable shooting.

MUSICALGUNNUT45
October 8, 2011, 02:47 PM
I voted 1911 because thats what I prefer but you shouldn't be asking us about this it all comes down to what you prefer both are good guns. which one fits your hand the best and which one do you shoot best. as far as ease of carrying goes the 1911 is much much thinner and that makes a big difference in comfort. but the sig is lighter and that can make a difference as well.

golden
October 8, 2011, 04:16 PM
NO QUESTION,

I used to carry the SIG 226 on duty and it was an accurate, very reliable, relatively compact gun with a very good operating system.
Also, 31 rounds versus 17 is a BIG POINT in favor of the SIG.

That said, they are both too big for carry concealed, at least to me. I would much prefer a SIG 228 or 229 if I choose to go with a 9m.m.

For me, their are no .45ACP's to carry concealed. I just do not think the recoil in a compact pistol is worth the reduction in magazine capacity and controlability.

Jim

Dr_B
October 29, 2011, 12:20 PM
The decision has been made: P226 when I can get away with it; j-frame .38 for everything else. The .45 isn't going anywhere. That Sig C3 is a NICE gun. The P226 and the C3 are about 5 ounces different in weight when fully loaded, and the P226 is slightly wider mainly in the grips.

fastbolt
October 29, 2011, 03:15 PM
I didn't choose anything in your poll.

Not my call to choose something for you. I've never worked with you on a range and seen you handle, manipulate or shoot either of them.

Which vehicle do you take with you when you leave the house? Which pair of shoes or boots? How do you choose what to wear each day?

Suit yourself. Only you know your needs, experience and skillset with each firearm chosen to serve in the role as a dedicated lawfully carried defensive weapon.

Aside from simply choosing to carry whichever one you happen to "like", though, you might consider something else as a possible influence in making your decision.

Invest in a training class which will tax your skills and make demands upon you, your weapons, carry methods and overall familiarity with all your equipment ... when used under stressful and demanding conditions.

Standing at a firing line and shooting slow-fire when you're relaxed, well balanced and able to take your time to place your hits is one thing.

Doing so under conditions which are physically and mentally challenging and difficult, while making judgments and dealing with time constraints, negotiating environmental difficulties & obstacles ... probably in bad light ... and being able to make consistently accurate hits on one or more identified "threat" targets ... maybe while having to use your non-dominant hand ... is a bit more difficult for most folks.

When carried as a lawful defensive weapon the handgun becomes a tool.

The sleek lines, finish, style or some other combination of inherent "pride of ownership" characteristics which makes you gaze at it in admiration inside your safe are all well & good when considering your investment as a responsible firearms owner, enthusiast, collector, etc ... but what do you want to have in your hand if you ever find yourself involved in an unexpected dynamic, rapidly changing, chaotic situation which requires you to use a firearm to protect yourself (or an innocent third person) from the imminent threat of serious bodily injury or death at the hands of an attacker (or attackers)? Probably not going to happen in a comfortable spot with optimal lighting, either.

Pick one.

Check and recheck your knowledge & foundation skillset in using whatever you choose.

Consider expanding your knowledge & skillset.

Train, train & train (properly).

Practice, practice & practice (properly).

More importantly, make sure you remain fully aware and current when it comes to the applicable laws in your area regarding the lawful use of deadly force in defense of self or others, carrying a firearm as a weapon, etc.

Does your homeowner insurance cover intentional shootings, or just accidents and acts of God? Legal costs can be daunting.

Then you can start to think about how well the color of your "favorite" holster may match the finish of your "favorite" handgun, which is being selected as a dedicated defensive weapon ...

We've all faced this dilemma.

As a LE firearms instructor of some small experience ... and an owner and enthusiasts of firearms even before I entered LE work ... I've collected a fair number of firearms. I have enough handguns with which I've trained, practiced and qualified for use as duty & off-duty (and now retirement) weapons that I could carry a different one every day for at least a month ... so on any given day, no matter what I choose to carry, something's staying home in the safe. ;)

In my case, I usually make my choice after given some thought to my planned activities for the day, some risk assessment of where I'll be engaged in those activities, what I'll be wearing throughout the day ... and the level of personal comfort I feel is possible when balanced against my risk assessment.

Look to your perceived needs and anticipated circumstances in whatever manner you feel is reasonable. Pick which tool you feel is best suited to your needs, remembering the circumstances in which you may be required to effectively utilize that tool may be as hard as anything you can imagine. Or worse.

I think of these things whether I'm carrying one of my full-size pistols, or a compact/subcompact (covering many 9's, .40's & .45's) or one of my revolvers (5 or 6-shot, from small to large).

Just my thoughts.

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