|Sigforum K9 handler|
If you "never heard" of issues with older SIGs, I guess you were either never around volumes of the guns, or you just didn't listen at the time. There are as few issues today, as there were then. The claimed QC problems of today are exceedingly rare, just as they were then. I haven't seen any of the newer guns to be less accurate. Most of the new guns are way more accurate than the shooter, just like the older guns.
If it makes you feel all warm and fuzzy to buy an older P226, do it. The P226 is a great pistol in any form. But, I sure wouldn't spend any extra on the West German name. You feel free to spend all of your money how you choose. The numbers just don't back up the reasoning. I've got new and old guns, and can't tell a bit of difference in the high end performance of either.
I prefer the aesthetics of the stainless milled slide two tone. If railed had been specified, my vote would have been different. Though I have two railed Sigs. I prefer the non-railed and my most recent Sig purchases have been older non-railed guns.
Dum Spiro Pugno
Well, I admit to not being a gunsmith or instructor, but I've been a shooter, collector and owner for some 40 years. I have been a member here for long enough to see trends through the years and I can certainly say there have been FAR more egregious issues with newer SIGs than the older German made ones. It's an inarguable fact that newer SIGs go through fewer QC steps than the older ones. They're using more MIM parts contracted to third world manufacturers, etc.
One could make the case that it was inescapable because of the competition brought on by Glock and other polymer framed striker fired pistols. I would imagine some cost cutting was needed to keep the P220 series viable in a highly competitive market. However, in terms of quality, there really is no comparison. Many can't really comprehend quality. Much like a mechanic using a tool from Harbor Freight vs. Snap-On. I can see where there are those who aren't willing to shell out for the extra QC that goes into the older models when the new SIGs look just like the older ones. Individually test firing each and every pistol before it goes out the door for function AND accuracy costs money, and some aren't willing to pay for it. I get it. But equating the extra QC to "pixie dust" is just plain silly.
It's a paradox really. The newer SIGs with the one piece milled slides are sure to be more durable with +P ammo and high performance calibers like .357S and .40. But, I am quite sure they are batch tested and not individually certified. Further, they are likely assembled by lower skilled employees than those in Germany. Germans and Americans have different perspectives in the products they produce. Germans take personal pride in turning out excellence. To get that in the US, it pretty much needs to come from companies like Wilson, Ed Brown, SVI, etc. It's not coming from any factory made guns like SIG, Colt, S&W, etc.
I know you spend a lot of time training and I know you are affiliated with Bruce Gray. Bruce is probably one of the best gunsmiths in history. He has an affiliation with SIG. We all know him as a great SIG smith. The current situation with SIG's QC creates a good business opportunity for him and other smiths who specialize in SIG pistols. He can correct and fix problems that got missed by SIG in Exeter. The thing is though, I've been around guns long enough to remember the day when Colt 1911s were the bread & butter for gun smiths. In those days, it was unheard of to have a SIG smithed. Sure, you could have a trigger job done but very few ever did that. Now days, it's not uncommon to have a brand new SIG smithed. As a matter of fact, right here on this forum some years ago, I specifically recall a thread where Bruce suggested it not being a bad idea to have a brand new P220 series pistol sent in to be inspected to make sure the milled slides didn't have burrs that would chew up the alloy frames. The current situation is beneficial to those who specialize in SIG gunsmithing.
I can see why a well known smith would champion the current situation. Further, I can see why the same gunsmith would tell people the newer ones are "just as good" or maybe even "better". But, I've been around long enough to recall the days when a customer didn't need to have the dealer pull out 3-5 pistols so the buyer could cherry pick the best one. I remember box stock SIGs that worked right out of the box without need for a "break-in". I know many of the new SIGs can as well, and in some cases as with the new US produced P210s they have a stellar track record so far. I am confident that if someone could pull the return records on new SIGs vs. the older German ones, we'd see far fewer returns for factory defects in the older German pistols. Similarly, if we looked at the archives here on SIGForum, we'd likely see trends of much higher issues reported with newer SIGs vs German made ones.
One final thought. If we step back and look at another manufacturer, Kimber, who used have an excellent reputation for their rifles and 1911s. There was a period there for a while where Kimber had a number of issues to the point where many stopped considering them when looking for a quality 1911. They went from being one of the top factory 1911s to being quite problematic. And I'd say SIG and Kimber have something in common in this regard.
So, what I'm saying is, it's NOT "pixie dust" that makes old SIGs superior. It's a series of QC and manufacturing steps that have been omitted on newer SIGs that makes the difference. And believe me... There IS a difference. The question is, can the observer discern that difference? I suspect most on here can not. But for those of us who can, we are willing to pay a premium for a German proofed SIG Sauer pistol.
|Sigforum K9 handler|
Stereotypes typically have some underlying truth, but they also tend to be overstated and over applied, especially herein. Also, chronological snobbery cuts in all directions. I’m often guilty of complaining that “they don’t make them like they used too”. Yet, such a belief ignores the problems inherent with those older products. Good Example - cars.
FWIW, I’ve bought three new Sigs in the last year. No teething problems and no specific break-in required.
Very nice post Belgian Blue. A lot of virtue in your words. I personally would have difficulty offering advice to the OP seeing as we are comparing a '94 to a 2000 year pistol. The 2000 being a TT/NR which many shooters like every bit as much as the earler manufactured model. Probably was not the mim parts involved yet in 2000. I've said before that most makers of autos in the 9mm chambering have pretty well got this figured out. I like both pistols and would have no issues picking one over the other. This said, the processes used to make the earlier W. German Sigs did produce guns of great quality and reliability. The little 9mm cartridge was not going to wear them down or out in any short order. Many quality issues have been covered here of the US made Sigs. The one little tid bit that stands out with me, and I know others who have machined various stocks from bar, is the often deformations the bar stock goes through due to hardnesses and stresses. I've seen first hand, companies who've made bar stock parts, including pistol slides, where the interior of the piece is machined away and the unfinished part had deformed to a terrible degree. I've seen the learning process it can take to learn what hardness a material requires to machine without deforming other features of the piece beyond acceptable tolerences. Stress relieved materials have even shown to deform some untill things are discovered in the machining processes. While I could carry on here a bit, I'll just say I harbor a special affinity for the early NR P226 in 9mm. Prized as much as the W. German made 9mm P226. As for paying extra for the Germany guns, I receantly saw 2 W. German P226s in their boxes, looking like they were never fired, which were both near $900.00 price. I wanted them both. They were definately worth the prices.
|It's all part of |
Gnomes and pixie dust? That’s just silly...everyone knows it was elves living in a big tree...when they weren’t baking cookies, of course.
Regards From Sunny Tucson,
"Faith isn't believing that God can; it's knowing that He will." (From a sign on a church in Nicholasville, Kentucky)
|Sigforum K9 handler|
If I buy a P226 manufactured in 2019, what "many quality issues" am I going to experience?
A search only reveals people complaining of finish issues. I can't find the first thread on parts breakage, a pattern of malfunctions, or the like. Where is this mechanical quality breakdown?
What are the many known quality issues regarding the P226 built in 2019? Care to provide some examples that aren't complaints about the PVD?
Recent experience with Sig QC, all in the last 6 months:
Brand new X Compact. Cost $560. Runs like a top. Excellent trigger.
CPO P320 Compact 9mm. Cost $425. "Upgraded". Runs like a top. Excellent trigger.
Brand new P220 ASE. Cost $950. Magazine release was poorly fitted to the point that I have to depress and hold the mag release button so I can insert the magazine. The DA trigger has an excessive pull weight that is the same pull weight as my Euro spec P6 cop gun. I swapped out the stock main spring with a lighter Wolfe main spring in hopes of addressing the problem. No change was noted. Oddly, the SA pull is pretty good. Does the gun function? It does. Runs fine. Accurate too.
It will be sent to Robert Burke as soon as I can muster the cash for the trip. I could send it back to Sig, but they may well say its trigger is within spec. I know they will fix the mag release situation.
My point is this: If my poly Sigs are fine at their price point, shouldn't I be reasonably able to expect the same level of performance from a Sig that is nearly double in price? I dont expect a super smooth, ultra light, breaks like a glass rod DA trigger pull straight out of the factory. But I do expect one that enables me to control the gun properly on the DA pull.
And for comparison, I have an older US assembled folded slide P220. Its DA pull is fine.
So, as I see it, if Sig is interested in selling more $1000 pistols, they need to ensure consistent QC so buyers are getting their 1K worth. If hand inspection is now longer practicable, (given their production numbers, its not) Sig needs to come up with some other way to make sure you get a trouble free 1K gun.
End of Earth: 2 Miles
Upper Peninsula: 4 Miles
The recent mag issue has to do with a change made in the crimp / crease at the top of the mag. Recently-produced mags had a slightly crimp / crease that was not pushing the catch out of the way. The mag catch works fine. I’ve posted regarding this issue and others have as well, including a rep from Top Gun Supply who noted that they had to return a case of mags.
My recent purchases include a 2017 Legion 220 SAO and a 2019 220 Nitron. Both new. The 2019 model came with the troublesome mags; the SAO did not. The good mags (from the SAO) insert properly into the 2019 220.
The problem is / was not with the pistol. Instead, it is with the manufacturer of the mag. Perhaps the mag mfgr was directed by Sig to alter that crimp in order to alleviate some past concerns with loading odd-length 45 rounds. I’m not sure. But I believe you mischaracterized the issue.
Part of the problem is that we’ve developed an attitude that “for a $1K” we have earned the right to assume handfitted perfection. That’s silly. These aren’t custom pistols. They never have been. Current production methods & technology allow for different manual procedures. For example, given that my JJ slide was made by a large machine stamping the basic shape out of flat steel with someone then welding on the separate nose and eventually pinning in a breech block, I sure hope they spent some time manually fitting, grinding, testing that Frankenstein’d hunk of metal.
Lastly, the fact that my JJ is worth more with it’s old yellow cardboard box and rotting test target, etc. implies that much of the perceived value is to facilitate boasting by the owner. If these weapons were truly that much better, would you really care as to the dumb box?
From 1975 to 2000 a lot of money was reinvested to the QC, the majority of the triggers were better( 4 lbs in SA ), but at the same time the production was small compared to Today. In 2000 Sig SAuer was sold to Mr Lüke and Ortman. Their goal was to make money, so cost cutting was the trend, the manufacturing of the ejection port was changed on the p229 slide for example, resulting in slide cracking,injuring a female police officer in Switzerland. The slide broke in two parts like the Beretta. Frame were made in Germany and slides in USA, resulting in fitting problems.I've owned circa 35 Sig Sauer pistols P220-225-228-229-226 etc.. all i can say is that, they are all reliable, accurate, and trouble free.
i've seen some german models P220-1 with a too short frame leaving a gap between the frame and the slide, P226's with p228/229 recoil spring and guide rod, all circa 2015. For me i prefer the old models for the better balance they give to me, and the diamond checkered grips were perfect for my hands.
The triggers are a little bit heavier Today.
The production is a lot bigger today than in the 90?s it's clear that the lemon's rate will be higher than before.
For a lot of shooting i will take a good MK25.
The West german P226 stamped slides need more maintenance.
As an accountant with approx 35 years in the trade, I’ll let you in on a few trade secrets:
One, it is and has always been the essential purpose of every business to yield a profit for its owners.
Two, public perception extends far too much credit to us beancounters as to our ability to influence changes in production quality, etc. We certainly provide info / advice as to cost control, earnings growth, etc., but all of management understands the main purpose of business, as expressed above.
Can you post (or have a site I can visit) photos that shows the improved or proper magazine? I am sure other P220 owners would be interested. All my mags work fine in my older P220, even very old ones with the spring wire base plate retention.
Are you saying that Sig shipped out P220s with a known mag issue?
End of Earth: 2 Miles
Upper Peninsula: 4 Miles
I've tried to post some references to other threads / sites, including pics within. However, I believe that post is now in Sigforum QC!
I think perhaps a 2019 P226 has been the end product of at least a decade of minor issues in quality. I dont know how many times in receant years passed we read about return shipping lables. I feel many of the issues we've read here about came into focus with MIM parts as they used to be made, new tech in finishes has been a givin, customers have taken notice of recoil spring issues, plastic guide rods were not so easily accepted, some pistols showed deburr ops which some gun owners have referred to as hack work. Magazine design failures on other P series guns are well known. I'm not putting down the fine P226 pistol. It remains my favorite Sig pistol. I suspect even the rail machined on the frames bottom provides some form if rigidity to qwell stress deformations but, you've also read for years here jl of the quality issues in a pistol priced rather high. Customers expect to get a good product and the older Sig pistols gave them just that. The whole damn big change from formed flat stock, welded and machined to a slide milled complete from bar, should simply have all the bugs worked out prior to selling them in the market.
In retrospect, I consider the pistols made from forming sheet steel in 2 pieces, welding, machining and adding a breech block seperate part, a real under taking considering how this major part is made today. Who in heck would have thought to make a pistol slide in this manner ? It had to be a requirement to gage every slide, hand deburr and the tell tale dull end mill clean up work of the slides welded interior spatter. Todays bar stock slides can nearly be run lights out with robots. An additional problem of tool life can even be controlled. Variations in material can cause great issues as well. The stainless slides have shown on some alloy frames to eat into the aluminum due to lack of hand work. Some of that hand work I have seen in some brands of slides has been terrible. Not just Sig. No two people work the same. No two seem to strive to acquire the same end results. No two share and work together to achieve that results. People vary in talents. The manufacturer must allow time for the end product to be completed, properly. Less and quality issues arise.
Well I want this to be my dedicated range gun, so I went with the milled slide model. I was going to get a GLOCK 19, but found this baby for about the same price. I've never been much of a two tone guy, but I really like this one. Thanks again everyone!
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