By Bob Walsh
The Gun of the Week this time around is SIG 238 .380 pistol.
This is a very neat little gun built in an approximate 1911 design. It is available in two frames, one stainless steel and the other alloy. They also make it in a variety of different colors / finishes.
This truly is a pocket pistol. The alloy frame gun weighs only 15 ounces with an empty magazine. The all-stainless pistol is obviously somewhat heavier. The overall length of the pistol is a tad under 5.5 inches and a tad under 4 inches tall. The barrel is 2.8 inches long. The width of the pistol at the widest spot is 1.1 inches and the grip is only about 0.94 inches wide. It is available with two different types of magazines, the flush fit holds 6 rounds and the finger grip magazine holds 7 rounds. This particular pistol is the heavier, more expensive all-steel version.
The weapon has excellent 3-dot sights and the trigger pull is quite decent, which one would expect in a quality single-action pistol. The slide can be operated with the safety engaged. It is not available with a right side (left handed) thumb safety.
There are a couple of things about it I confess I am not wild about. It has a magazine safety, which I do not care for but the firearms company lawyers love. Also I admit I would be happier if the butt frame was a tad longer, say about one round. As it is my hand keeps the magazine from dropping cleanly from the weapon. Of course the chances of every having to do an emergency reload in a private citizen self-defense situation are limited, but if you have to pull the weapon then pull the trigger the odds have gone seriously sideways on you already.
Unless you reload for .380 you will find this is actually a fairly expensive gun to shoot. Ammo often cost more than ammo for 9mm, and you can get a much wider variety of ammo for a 9 than you can for a .380. Since this is a locked breach pistol it is capable of dealing with fairly hot loads, though this does make the gun more expensive to make.
I am unlikely to actually carry this gun as it is only very slightly smaller than my typical EDC pistols which fire significantly more powerful cartridges. That being said if the commie bastards that run California ever manage to outlaw pistols with more oomph than .380 (not an impossible task) this is what I would go with. It is just plain damn fun to shoot. That doesn’t hurt a bit.
Editors Note: I enjoy Bob's weapons blog. Bob has a way of describing weapons and situations like, "but if you have to pull the weapon then pull the trigger the odds have gone seriously sideways on you already."
I could see myself saying "Shit!" in a situation like that.