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Posted: 4/30/2003 5:18:16 PM EDT
I'm a 20 year old female, anxiously awaiting my 21st birthday so I can get my hands on a sleek new gun. Mmm...

I've been looking at the SIG SAUER P232 - do y'all think that would be a good first gun for a "beginner" like myself?
Link Posted: 5/1/2003 6:30:11 PM EDT
If you are familiar with semi-auto handguns-- I think it's a good choice---but if you are completely new to them----I think a revolver might be a better choice.

Whatever you get ---make sure it fits your hands comfortably!!

Take care!!

Joker223

Link Posted: 5/5/2003 5:52:15 PM EDT
I happen to think the 230/232s are nie perfect, first or last gun or any gun inbetween.

Before you buy though you need to check out a few things. First, make sure you can rack the slide with either hand. In an emergency that may be necessary. Second, do a complete field strip to become familar with your new handgun. Pull down the lever on the left side, pull the slide all the way to the rear and lift it up, slide it forward and all the way off. Reassemble it.

If you are comfortable with those two drills, I think you'll love the 232. Also think about where you'll carry it. The blued version is considerably lighter than the stainless steel and is my favorite. Great holsters are available from Lou Alessi and High Noon Holsters among others. If this is going to go into a bag, still make sure that you get a good holster to protect it from all the things that just might reach out and grab a trigger (of course I know you never have stuff like that in your purse).
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 10:51:01 AM EDT

I carry a blued 232 in a smart carry rig 95% of the time I'm out of the house. The wife can't tell without touching (yeah come on!) whether I am carrying or not.

The 232 is a little zippy on recoil compared to some larger frame pistols. The european mag catch also takes a little training to master.

But you'll love this pistol...I had planned to buy something completely different when I went to the show I got mine at...picked up the Sig and that was that.
Link Posted: 5/6/2003 12:45:01 PM EDT
Thanks for all the info!

As to holsters - what would y'all recommend for the Sig 232? I'd like to carry it whenever I'm able (I won't be able to do so on my college campus, obviously), so something easily concealed, and easily drawn...? I've had a couple of people recommend Blade-Tech - any good experiences with them?
Link Posted: 5/11/2003 6:21:39 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 5/11/2003 6:24:52 AM EDT by sig_230]
I use either High Noon Holsters or Lou Alessi for my 230.
Link Posted: 6/10/2003 2:05:16 PM EDT
do not buy a sig 232 at any cost, i have seen one messed upfrom the factory, it was improperly heat treated, and the metal was too soft, the gun jammed repeatedly without fail, and sig has repaired it twice, and has not got it right yet, and refuses to settle the problem, im me for more information, and copys of the correspondance from sig
Link Posted: 6/17/2003 9:36:18 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/17/2003 11:36:38 AM EDT by Boomholzer]
oedipa

The P232 is relatively difficult to shoot accurately.

It is an attractive looking weapon and wonderful to carry (although the SS P232 is heavy for it's size).
I think the Sig design is strong, no worries about a kaboom or breakage.

Here is why I would recommend you avoid the P232 as your first-time weapon:
1) The trigger mechanism is horrendous. The travel is quite long and it is very heavy. The trigger axis is not perpendicular to your trigger finger at the point of release.

2) Straight blow-back design. This design typically has more recoil.

3) Beginners sometimes get bit by the low and sharp slide during cycling.

4) It still has the European "heel" style magazine release. We would prefer an auto with a button magazine release.


I had owned a P232 for over a year and even carried it for a few months. The P232 is the only firearm I have ever sold. I couldn’t hit anything with it (relative to other handguns I own) and I like to feel confident with my weapons.

Here is my vote:
The P239 is comfortable, very accurate, acceptable trigger, and has less recoil with the benefits of the larger 9mm cartridge. The P239 is also a SA/DA hammered auto with a auto decock mechanism.
It has a button magazine release.
It has a linked barrel like most modern autoloaders.


edited for clairity.

Link Posted: 6/17/2003 12:05:12 PM EDT
Boomholzer -

Thanks so much for the input! I was looking at the P239, but was a little unsure that I needed that much power. I'll definitely have a looksee.
Link Posted: 6/17/2003 12:29:39 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/17/2003 12:38:19 PM EDT by Boomholzer]

Originally Posted By oedipa:
Boomholzer -

Thanks so much for the input! I was looking at the P239, but was a little unsure that I needed that much power. I'll definitely have a looksee.




The 9mm ain't much. See if you can find a range that rents handguns and you can give them both a try.

Remember: The P239 in 9mm will feel less powerful than the P232 in 380acp (9mm Kurz).

My other has a P239 and she loves it. I fired a few hundred rounds through it and grew to love it too.
I can't think of a better 9mm auto pistol for someone new to shooting. Especially if he or she wished to carry it concealed.

Woman shooters I have known also like the Walther P99 because of it's light weight, and smaller grip (with the smallest backstrap).
I also have this handgun and it is not anywhere near as funtionally reliable as the P239.

Good luck. Let me know what you decide.
Link Posted: 6/18/2003 7:07:15 PM EDT
Here's another vote for the 239. I have one and think it makes a great carry gun and a great shooter at the range. I have it in .40 and recoil isn't too sharp to still enjoy shooting.

The 239 replaced my ppk as a carry gun. The ppk has some of the same perks and drawbacks as the 232.

Enjoy shopping.

Bioguy.
Link Posted: 6/20/2003 4:16:29 PM EDT
Oedipa, I disagree with the guys above. I think you can't go wrong with either the 232 or the 239.

I had a 230 (the predecessor to the P232) and loved it; traded it to a friend in a moment of weakness and have been trying to get it back ever since.

The trigger on the 230 was a little rough when I got it, but it smoothed up a lot after breaking it in. I really prefer the size of the 230/232 -- it's much slimmer and easier to conceal, if that's a factor.

That said, I carry a 9mm P239 today. It's a little on the fat side, and also noticably heavier if you're toting it around all day. But if you are staking your life on a gun, 9mm is definitely much better protection than a .380, a.k.a. 9mm kurz (short).

Either is worlds better than a .25 .... which, in turn, is a more effective tool than an ashtray.

For a first handgun, the P239 is the most effective round in the most controllable, comfortable handgun. But if its added weight and size mean you will carry it less often, you'll be better served with the lighter P232.

HTH.
Link Posted: 6/20/2003 5:09:40 PM EDT
Here is another vote for the P239 over the P232 or 230. The only SIG's I've ever disliked and sold where a S.S. P230 and a blued P230 for the above mentioned reasons of trigger pull, mag release placement and overall bulk. If I'm gonna carry a .380 it wil be a PPK anyday over a P232/230.
My P239, in 9MM gets carried almost as often as my Kahr K9 currently.
Link Posted: 7/3/2003 7:48:30 PM EDT
My P230 was also the only handgun I've ever sold. I love my 220 and it's a good size to carry.
Link Posted: 7/3/2003 10:02:04 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 7/3/2003 10:05:29 PM EDT by 1moa]
I agree with getting the P239. Get it in 9mm and practice. All handgun rounds are "underpowered," and shot placement is more important than any particular round. A good target ammo is Winchester white box 115gr. FMJ. You can get it at Wal-Mart for 10.96 for 100 rounds (they put out the 50 round boxes, ask for value packs). At 115gr it has less recoil and will allow you to develop skill with your gun.

Semi-autos need to be taken care of, more so then revolvers. But if you do general maintenance you will be fine. As for self-defense ammo, try 124-147gr JHP or EFMJ. Finally in my opinion SIGs are the best handguns ever. I have one and now am looking to get a second(P226 in .357sig. Wow test data says this is one heck of a round!), than a third or who knows how many. Let us know what you get.
Link Posted: 7/6/2003 9:24:10 PM EDT
I got my daughter (19) a P239 9mm for concealed carry. Being her first gun, she didn't like it.
She just held it once. I said aint it great? How'd you like that?
I want one like Mom's.
OK. A S&W M60 38 special.
Yahoooooooo!
I now have a Sig P239 9mm!
I couldn't be happier.
I want her to have something. Soon.
She takes the "back" road home. That's 50 miles of dirt road.
Go with a P239. I'ts a great weapon.
Link Posted: 7/6/2003 10:48:40 PM EDT
Damn, lucky daughter. :) My parents are so anti-gun I've just quit telling them when I go out to look at guns, because they try and dissuade me from buying one. I'm moving to a big city next year, and I'm near some pretty gang-riddled areas; I feel, with proper training, I'll be able to defend myself a hell of a lot better with a gun than without. Thanks to everyone for your answers and support! I'll definitely put up a follow-up when I (finally) get my gun. Again, thanks, and keep the info coming!
Link Posted: 7/17/2003 3:57:04 PM EDT
I'll cast yet another vote for the Sig P-239 chambered for the 9x19. I love the balance and feel of this handgun, great sight system, very intuitive to use. Trigger is wonderful in single action pull and useable in double action mode. I like to add the wrap-a-round Houge rubber grip for added control and comfort enhancement.

All of the Sigs I've fired have been thoroughly reliable, accurate, dependable, and fun to shoot.

Having said all that, the best handgun for everyone to start with is one chambered for 22LR, a high quality revolver or autoloader with a GOOD TRIGGER! I love the S&W M-617 w/6" barrel and an action/trigger job from any competent gunsmith.
Link Posted: 7/17/2003 3:58:19 PM EDT
I'll cast yet another vote for the Sig P-239 chambered for the 9x19. I love the balance and feel of this handgun, great sight system, very intuitive to use. Trigger is wonderful in single action pull and useable in double action mode. I like to add the wrap-a-round Houge rubber grip for added control and comfort enhancement.

All of the Sigs I've fired have been thoroughly reliable, accurate, dependable, and fun to shoot.

Having said all that, the best handgun for everyone to start with is one chambered for 22LR, a high quality revolver or autoloader with a GOOD TRIGGER! I love the S&W M-617 w/6" barrel and an action/trigger job from any competent gunsmith.
Link Posted: 7/24/2003 7:36:57 PM EDT
the sig 232 is the off duty pistol of the secret service just FYI. regardless of what pistol you get make sure of a few things.
1. when you grip it your trigger finger should natrualy fall in place with the trigger in the last joint in the finger, not the tip
2. all fingers should be on the grip
3. the grip should comfortably be in the center of the "u" inbetween your thumb and index finger
4. while holding the gun the slide should move straight up and down your shooting arm

these are just a couple of things to think of while shopping they are a little obvious but i hope they help a little
Link Posted: 8/2/2003 3:28:29 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/2/2003 3:31:10 PM EDT by Winston_Wolf]
... Oedipa Maas, what you decide?

... I'm becoming a bit more interested in Sig Sauer products lately.

... Should I buy one of these?

Link Posted: 8/3/2003 8:35:00 AM EDT

Originally Posted By oedipa:
I'm moving to a big city next year, and I'm near some pretty gang-riddled areas; I feel, with proper training, I'll be able to defend myself a hell of a lot better with a gun than without.



oedipa, if you aren't all ready, get in as good of condition physically as you can before moving. The way you carry yourself has a lot to do with whether you ever have to draw or not.
Link Posted: 8/4/2003 3:59:59 AM EDT
One other I might suggest, if you can find one, the Sig 225. Little bit bigger than a 232, about the same size as a 239, 9mm and the best grip! When I'm not packing my XD-40 that is what I usually have. And you can still plink with it. 9mm ball around here is cheeper than .380.
Link Posted: 8/16/2003 10:53:10 PM EDT
Well Guys (and Girl),

I happened to buy a P232 today, then came to this board to see what I could find out about it from other people.

I bought the gun because I got my carry permit, but my G23 is too big for my small frame and has an annoying tendency to blow up, i.e. KABOOM! I had been holding out for an XD-9 compact, but they seem to be vaporware in the USA for the moment.

I looked at the P232 because I:

Wanted a slim gun

Wanted a gun that didn't penalize me for being left handed with hands that are small

Wanted a gun that was smooth to draw without a lot of bells and whistles to dig into my waistline

Wanted a gun that was small, but able to do the job without serious follow-up shot problems due to recoil

After shooting it, I feel I got what I wanted. It is very comfortable to carry, very accurate, VERY light, VERY controllable, and as accurate as any gun I own-which is to say that it's capable of better than I am. My first group with it at 25 feet was right around 2.5", and about the same at 50 feet once I had 50 rounds though it. Not Olympic performance, but more than good enough for what is needed.

Oedipa: Asking "manly men" like typical gun owners are about a pistol preference is like trying to get old ladies to decide where to go for lunch after church.

Most gun-guys have issue with the P232's "small" caliber. I admit, that I would *prefer* to have a 9mm or better in a defensive handgun, but a .380 will definitely do the job. In hotter loads, you can get 9mm performance from it if you really feel the need, and it is worth noting that most European police forces still use the .380 for their duty weapons.

I think that a larger gun may not serve you well. I can't debate the merits of what little recoil difference there would be between the 232 and 239, but if you have small hands like me it will take a lot more practice to become proficient with a gun that is too large for your hands. I *wanted* to carry a a .45ACP G36, but the thing didn't fit my hand-and that made the recoil worse because I couldn't hold onto it. Picking a gun with a single stack magazine like the P232 will go a long way for you IMO.

If I were in your position, I would find a gun store with an indoor range. These often rent guns for people to try out. If you have to drive a while, so be it-for what you might waste buying the 'wrong' gun, it's worth it.

After reading the previous posts, I have to comment on the trigger and recoil of the p232. It is the most controllable handgun I have right now. It is not the most powerful handgun I have, but it's the one I would bet on if I had to shoot more than once, and the target was more than 20 feet away. As for the trigger, yes, it does have a "heavy" first round pull in the double action mode. It's not what I consider to be cumbersome, and it's made up for with the light single action pull that comes after the first shot is fired. You really do want the first round to be a heavier trigger pull-if you pull the trigger, it HAS to be a deliberate action because all sorts of bad things can happen when your adrenalin is pumping and nerves are on end.

I commend you for your approach to buying a first handgun. Most guys (like myself) buy the "Gun of the Week" and have a difficult time getting used to it. It took a long time for me to shoot my first handgun without flinching every round-something that could have been avoided had I bought a gun like the p232 in the first place.

Good Luck!

Dave
Link Posted: 8/23/2003 10:25:20 PM EDT

Originally Posted By oedipa:
Damn, lucky daughter. :) My parents are so anti-gun I've just quit telling them when I go out to look at guns, because they try and dissuade me from buying one. I'm moving to a big city next year, and I'm near some pretty gang-riddled areas; I feel, with proper training, I'll be able to defend myself a hell of a lot better with a gun than without. Thanks to everyone for your answers and support! I'll definitely put up a follow-up when I (finally) get my gun. Again, thanks, and keep the info coming!


I'm a lucky father to have such a lucky daughter. I'm saddened to hear that your parents aren't too concerned about your safety.
You could more than likely carry a P232 in a Smart Carry on campus and not be detected. I use mine often with my P239 in several unathorized places.
Good luck.
Stay safe.
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