Okay, that’s one mag. You can keep them in the chest cavity; not as tight with the groupings as I’d like, but as I warm up a little bit, we’ll see if I can’t bring those in a little bit.
Hey, I’m Destinee. This is SIG Sauer’s P238 and it is a little mini 1911. When I first saw this, actually I think I was in Gander Mountain and I had this big, girly, gosh-it’s-so-cute, and you know, because look at how tiny it is. It’s a lot like my 1911 but tinier. The girl in me was pretty intrigued by this, but they also just look nice. This particular model is the rosewood model, so it has a Nitron finish on the steel slide and then the aluminum frame is Blackheart-anodized and then the grips are diamond-checkered rosewood hold grips, but the thing with the P238s is SIG makes them in a whole bunch of different styles. I saw one, they call it the P238 Lady. The frame, instead of being black, is all red. There’s another one—I actually think my dad really liked it—it’s similar to this, but it has diamond plating on it, almost like that industrial kind of feel. There’s another that is bi-toned. There’s one that’s a desert tone. There are a dozen different ones, so you have plenty of options if style is a concern. For me, being a chick, it’s something I think about. It’s not my end-all, be-all, but I appreciate it.
What’s more important for me, in concealed carry, being a female, is that this thing is so small; dimensions-wise, it’s 5.5 inches long, 3.9 inches tall, and 1.1 inches wide, so it’s got a lot smaller frame. It just has a smaller footprint than what I normally carry, which a lot of you probably by now already know is this full-size, and this is 35 ounces so it’s a lot heavier. I want to show you on my other camera here—look at their dimensions. This is the Kimber Pro and there’s that Sig Sauer pistol. I’m just going to set it on top. It’s almost half the size. I said this is 35 ounces. This is only 15.2 ounces, so it’s considerably more light-weight and conceal-friendly but the style of it is very much a 1911 style—the trigger, the safety. This model doesn’t have an ambidextrous thumb safety. It’s only on one side, but you can get the ambi safety, it just costs a little bit more. It’s actually a little bit easier than a 1911 to take down too, so I’m going to show you that real quick while I have you here. This nub right here, let me show you a little closer, there we go. That is actually the back of the slide stop pin. Don’t worry, I safety checked both of these guns. There are no rounds even in the same room, so this is a totally safe operation. I’m going to retract the slide here. First, I have to eject the mag—sorry—okay, and retract the slide, and this little notch lines up with the slide stop pin. From the other side, I’m going to push up on that slide stop pin from back here and I’m going to pull out the slide stop pin. From there, you just push the slide forward off the frame. Then you can pop out the recoil spring, recoil spring guide rod, and I can take out the barrel and you can see just how teeny-tiny this is.
Look at this. It’s 2.7 inches. Isn’t that crazy? I think this is actually the smallest pistol barrel I own. I thought, when I got this, especially after seeing that barrel size, that it was going to be really a snappy little beast just because that barrel is so small, but the recoil experience is nothing like that. I’ve put the recoil spring guide rod back into the recoil spring and there’s a little bit of a trick—it’s not even really a trick—it’s just that you just have to watch this here, if you can see that, when you slide the slide back on, depress this or else your slide won’t slide back all the way. Once the slide’s back on, you take the slide stop pin and place it back here. I have this end in the trigger guard just so that I don’t have to worry about getting that idiot scratch that 1911s are prone to and I leave it up just a little bit. Then I retract the slide here, there we go—sorry, I’m trying to keep this in frame for you—so that notch lines up, pick up my slide stop pin, and then replace it back in there. You hear that nice click? Let the slide go forward and it is ready to rock and roll now.
It has a 1911 look but it also operates like a 1911. The trigger is single-action only and the pull of it is 7.5 pounds so it’s not quite as light as that famous GLOCK trigger, but it’s a lot lighter than my Beretta Nano. That one has a pull that’s 9 pounds and it has this long creep to it. While I have the hammer pulled back and I know there’s no magazine in there and the chamber is empty because I just put it back together, I want to show you how that trigger pull looks. It doesn’t have a grip safety like the XD-S that I did a video on before, but that pull, very slight take-up, and very crisp pull. Between these big old sights, look at that, these are three-dot SIG light night sights and then these are my Kimber sights. They’re the same size, the three dots, which I thought was really cool, especially considering that the SIG is such a small pistol. When you have the Ruger LCP, it has almost no sights to it. I know that the idea behind a pocket .380 is that you’re using that at very close self-defense distances and you don’t necessarily need sights on it, but it makes it a lot easier to aim when you have them. When I take this to the range, I actually enjoy shooting it, not just for self-defense practice. This did catch my eye initially as a concealed carry pistol because it’s so tiny, but enjoying to shoot it never hurts, you know?
The sights are big, the trigger pull is crisp and it’s easy to predict. The grip is actually a little bit wider and the pistol is a little bit heavier than some of those other pocket .380s out there like the Ruger LCP or the Smith & Wesson BODYGUARD 380 or the Kahr P380. All of those are a little bit lighter and a little bit more narrow, but I feel like with the extra width of grip that you get with the P238, there’s more room for your hand to find good purchase. It is only a two-finger grip. You can see that there, my pinky hangs off, but they do sell an extended magazine for it. It’s about $40 on CheaperThanDirt.com so it’s not a crazy expense, but they do only include this little guy. This magazine will hold six, so the capacity of the gun is six plus one and that’s what you get out of the box is just this guy. I think it’d be cool if there was another mag thrown in there, but I guess I don’t really mind throwing out an extra $40 for another mag. The bonus of getting that extended mag is you get one extra round and you get the pinky rest, so that’s nice for those of you that’s important for.
Another thing about this is it’s expensive. This particular guy retails for $700, so like SIG pistols, they’re a little bit pricier than some, but you also have to consider that it’s not a polymer frame so it’s not going to be in the same price range as a polymer frame. I guess you kind of have to decide what’s valuable to you. For me, I like that it has the thumb safety on it like my 1911, so when I train from carrying my full-size pistol, training for carrying this tiny summer carry pistol is really similar because I already have in my head that I have to flick off that thumb safety first. If that’s a concern, I know there are a lot of people out there who only want that striker-fire kind of double action only experience and you don’t get that with this. It is still an awesome concealed carry option for its size.
I have a couple of holsters here. This one is the belt holster that SIG throws in the case for you. I don’t use it but I have it. It fits nicely. You have a little tension screw here so you can adjust for your draw how tight or loose it is. This guy is a custom holster made for me from John. He has a YouTube channel here at PhillyEDC, but he also has a website at PHLster.com, so I’ll put a link to it right here. This holster that he made for me to try out is a combination in-the-waistband and pocket holster. It’s got a very nice fit to it, good retention, and what I like about it is the small footprint. The gun’s already small, so it’s nice to have a holster that’s also going to have a small footprint. I also have this holster. This is a gem. Isn’t that beautiful? Actually, here, let’s see if you can see that. There’s the holster. This guy is a leather pocket holster made for me by Dennis at Dragon Leatherworks. This part of it is an extra wallet flap. It gives it the impression of a wallet in your pocket, but you can also get just the base holster for cheaper. These are custom-made leather holsters. Here, the retention is really tight and I actually haven’t carried this yet, so when I have, I’ll give you a full review on it. He makes a really beautiful product and his website is here: http://www.DragonLeatherworks.com.
When I initially looked at the P238, its size recommends itself for a concealed carry just because it’s so tiny. It’s actually fun to shoot at the range, too. The recoil is very soft. Actually, it feels more like a heavy .22. I think part of it is that the frame is a little bit wider and that it’s an aluminum frame instead of some of the .380s out there that have that polymer frame that are really popular. I feel that helps me to control it well, so between the large sights and the wider grip and just having a very minimal recoil experience, I can keep my groupings pretty tight, even at longer ranges. One time, I put down this eight inch silhouette down in the back of the range so it’s at about 25 yards and I was able to keep the rounds pretty much in the black, which I thought was pretty cool for a 2.7 inch barrel and a .380 round. Actually, a lot of people whom I had talked to about this gun at the range or at gun stores like the Gander where I saw this guy, recommend it for ladies especially because some ladies just don’t feel comfortable with something that’s going to be sharper or they have more restrictions on what they can afford to carry size-wise and that I can definitely relate to. The size is an advantage for being able to conceal it, but it’s not a bad range experience. I like to take it to the range.