VA state troopers get new service weapons


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trooper
May 26, 2004, 03:44 AM
http://cms.officer.proteus.com/article/article.jsp?id=13178&siteSection=1


BILL BASKERVILL

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) -- The state police are replacing all 2,000 sidearms used by troopers because of advancing age of the Sig Sauer .357-caliber weapons.

``These guns that we currently have are seven years old and they're reaching the point we're going to have to re-spring them,'' 1st Sgt. John Morykon, a weapons expert for the state police, said Tuesday.

The semiautomatic pistols have a number of springs that control recoil, trigger action, cocking, the firing pin and the hammer. All would have to be replaced.

A trooper's handgun ``lives a rough life,'' constantly being subjected to cold and rain, said Morykon. ``It's absolutely critical that their guns be reliable.''

He said there had been no malfunctions of the weapons but that they were close to their 5,000-round lifespan. Most of those rounds are fired during training.

The guns' night sights also need to be replaced because they are nearing the end of their shelf life, said Morykon. The sights contain tiny vials of tritium, a radioactive gas that glows in the dark similar to watch dials. Over the years the sights become dimmer and dimmer as the radioactive material decays, and ultimately they need to be replaced.

Instead of replacing the springs and sights, the state police decided to trade in the weapons on new Sig Sauer .357-caliber semiautomatics, said Lt. Gary Payne, spokesman for the state police. Sigarms Inc. of Exeter, N.H., is charging $206,400 to make the switch.

``It was more cost effective to trade them in,'' said Payne.

Unlike the weapons now in use, the new pistols have an automatic decocking mechanism that offers a safety hedge for troopers.

``This would have an advantage,'' said Senior Trooper Gary Crawley as he held the new weapon. ``Let's say you are in a stressful, shoot situation. You don't have to think about decocking (the hammer)'' or the gun firing accidentally after the incident is resolved, he said.

Morykon said all troopers are expected to be trained and equipped with the new weapon by November.

Last year, the state police upgraded their firepower with military-style semiautomatic rifles for each trooper.

The M-4 carbine allows troopers to address threats far beyond the range of the sidearms or 12-gauge pump-action shotguns they also carry. Officials said the threat of terrorism prompted the agency to purchase the M-4s, a compact semiautomatic derivative of the military M-16.

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Reno
May 26, 2004, 03:58 AM
Any word on being able to purchase a few?

farscott
May 26, 2004, 07:19 AM
That is a good deal for Virginia. If I did the math properly, the expenditure is only $103.20 per pistol. That has to be very close to the price of new night sight vials and new springs and gives each trooper a new handgun.

What is this "automatic decocking mechanism" that the new SIG Sauer's have that the older models did not? I am not aware of any SIG Sauer's without the decocking lever on the frame. Are the new pistols DAO?

Night Guy
May 26, 2004, 07:19 AM
So I guess the "automatic decocking mechanism" is a fancy name for a DAO pistol?

XLMiguel
May 26, 2004, 07:46 AM
IIRC, SIG just introduced a DAO version of the 229 that is similar to the H&K LEM trigger module, essentially a 'light' double action with a pull in the 6-8# range.

JamisJockey
May 26, 2004, 09:01 AM
``It's absolutely critical that their guns be reliable.''
Maybe they should rethink thier sidearm choice, then...

http://www.taurususa.com/imagesMain/H_608B4.jpg

:neener:

Bubbles
May 26, 2004, 09:39 AM
Does anyone else besides me find this hard to believe? I've owned a Sig P226 for years, bought it well-used, and I've used it in training classes which required 1000 to 1500 rounds of ammo. It's performed flawlessly.

5000 rounds through a Sig is barely enough to break it in.

I suspect that the used ones will be refurbished by Sig, and then sold. IIRC Keysler's has had a lot of Glock trade-ins; they may get the Sig's as well.

Sylvilagus Aquaticus
May 26, 2004, 09:51 AM
How very cool.

I bet that there may be a nice little bubble of reasonably priced P229's with little more than holster wear on the market within the next 6 to 9 months.

Let's hope they keep the price reasonable. I'd buy another one. My wife keeps after me to give her mine, so the only equitable thing is to get a duplicate.


Regards,
Rabbit.

sturmruger
May 26, 2004, 10:37 AM
Everyone says good things about Sigs I would love to pick up a nicely priced refurb gun. I am going to keep an eye on Kieslers and CDNN.

X-out
May 26, 2004, 11:33 AM
Doesn't the W.Va. state police carry Sig Sauer P-229's in .357 Sig.? The list price of one has to be nearly $700, so I'd guess that figure of $206,400 is a typo (if missing a zero = $2,064,000, or $1,032 per gun). After all, this is no-bid, state-government purchase we're talking about!

Jayman
May 26, 2004, 11:41 AM
They are switching to the new SIG DAK. There's no decocker lever, it is a DAO style pistol, albeit with a lighter trigger pull than the initial DA pull on the earlier model SIG. Everyone I've talked to who has shot a DAK SIG says they are excellent. Basically SIG has made a mechanism that is very similar in behavior to a Glock, i.e. every trigger pull is the same. The external hammer has also been bobbed, so it no longer extends out visibly to the rear of the slide.

I recall the trigger pull on the DAK being around 6.5-7 lbs.

As far as the 5000 round service life, yes, that is an absurdly low number for a SIG. They just have a good deal available and are jumping on it. I do know that a lot of the SIGs they have in service now have seen better days, but mostly from a non-shooting daily wear/tear perspective. Most officers shoot their qualifiers and THAT IS IT.

Evil_Ed
May 26, 2004, 01:08 PM
5000 rounds...in 7 YEARS??? Heck, one of us could go through 5000 rounds in a single year, some would even go through that much in 6 months.

I'd be happy to buy one of the used Sigs they are getting rid of, I could use another handgun! :D

Nightfall
May 26, 2004, 01:30 PM
Last year, the state police upgraded their firepower with military-style semiautomatic rifles for each trooper.

The M-4 carbine allows troopers to address threats far beyond the range of the sidearms or 12-gauge pump-action shotguns they also carry. Officials said the threat of terrorism prompted the agency to purchase the M-4s, a compact semiautomatic derivative of the military M-16.
Remember this the next time somebody says semi-auto "assault rifles" are only for killing a bunch of people quickly. Ask them if they're so useless in the civilian world, why do VA state police (fellow civilians) issue M4s to their troopers?

Standing Wolf
May 26, 2004, 03:34 PM
...they were close to their 5,000-round lifespan.

Virginians' tax dollars at play.

JeepDriver
May 26, 2004, 05:21 PM
What is this "automatic decocking mechanism" that the new SIG Sauer's have that the older models did not? I am not aware of any SIG Sauer's without the decocking lever on the frame. Are the new pistols DAO?

Sig has a new trigger system called the DAK trigger. It's a 6.5# DOA trigger. So far I think it has only made it into the 226 and 229. They have also added a rail to the 226 and 229 Alloy framed guns.

Chipperman
May 26, 2004, 05:28 PM
"Let's say you are in a stressful, shoot situation. You don't have to think about decocking (the hammer)'' or the gun firing accidentally after the incident is resolved, he said. "

Yet another example of substituting technology for training. :(

Dr.Rob
May 26, 2004, 06:10 PM
Bet you a dollar all those M-4 's were purchased because of the Beltway sniper.

Bob F.
May 26, 2004, 10:58 PM
IIRC W Va (not Virginia but West, by God, Virginia) SP carries POS S&W autos in .40.

Us Hillbillies can't afford Sigs for our troops!

Stay safe.
Bob

treeprof
May 27, 2004, 01:24 AM
I believe the 5000 lifespan comment refers to the re-spring job mentioned at the beginning of the story and not the gun itself. I have a 226 and 229 in 357 SIG, and the guns do take an extra beating with that cartridge vs a 9 mm.

Fed168
May 27, 2004, 02:09 AM
Beyond normal wear on springs, how are the frames holding up?

treeprof
May 27, 2004, 11:00 AM
Fed168 - On mine? Pretty well, bit better in the 226. Normal SIG wear on the rails, nothing unusual on the bbls like some posts I've seen on the SIG Forum. The 229 wrecked a recoil spring at at under 1000 rds. Haven't shot them much recently.

ny32182
May 27, 2004, 11:17 AM
I'm sure they are talking about the DAK trigger. I don't understand why they would pick a compact 229 for an open carry duty weapon, though. Seems like a 226 would be a better choice, especially for their application.

My CONCEALED weapon is a 226/.40.

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