A Little More on the ICE P320 Buy

It looks like lots of people read WeaponsMan.com, albeit sometimes second-hand.

Several other forums also picked the story up.

The Arms Guide story had significant bits of their own reporting in it, notably these parts:

ICE recently completed the contract with Sig delivering the .40 cal SIG 229R DAK.  DHS (with ICE, Secret Service and Coast Guard using Sigs) was the largest customer Sig had in the world. There was widespread discontent among ICE agents with the large grips, weight, snappy recoil and heavy DAK trigger on the 229.

ICE agents have told TAG that the current and very unpopular Director of the Office of of Firearms and Tactical Programs (OFTP) is retiring soon.  He may be looking to give Sig a big contract on his way out the door to get a job with Sig on the other side. Let’s hope this isn’t true, and that if it is, the ICE Office of Professional Responsibility is monitoring the situation.

Most likely P320 size for the contract is the Compact. Grip frames and palm swells are interchangeable to fit many different hands.

11 thoughts on “A Little More on the ICE P320 Buy

  1. Eric

    The USCG uses the SIG P229 with the DAK trigger. Firearms being what they are to the USCG (icky scary things that might get lost or be the cause of a career-ending negligent discharge), institutional USCG LOVES the DAK, as the trigger makes it nearly impossible for half-trained people to fire accidentally. With an agency the size of NYPD with nearly zero shootings in institutional memory, the ethos is that it’s more important to minimize accidental discharges than it is to maximize accuracy (which only matters on a “gimmie” qualification course anyway). Besides, new pistols cost money. My bet is that the USCG keeps the DAK until they’re forced by the Navy to replace it with phased plasma rifles in the 40-watt range.

  2. jim

    About those P250 .357 failures. They were tested very extensively, and found to have a habit of failing at almost exactly 5k rounds. Seems there was a metallurgy problem with one of the stamped – steel internal components (it was a while ago, but I think it was part of the trigger bar, or the slide stop lever), which would fatigue and fail consistently, resulting in a 100% dead gun, until parts were replaced. Since we routinely put 100k+ on a P229, the 250 was a nogo.

    IIRC, a heat treatment fix was found and lost due to the passing of a senior engineer.

    Since the 320 is basically a 250, sans hammer, and the lower components are effectively the same, I won’t touch one with a 10-foot pole. Though if you KNOW you’ll never reach 5k through the gun, it might not be a terrible choice.

    1. cm smith

      Before his passing, Todd Green wrote on his blog about his part in unnamed, but vaguely hinted at, agency trials and problems with the unnamed, but vaguely hinted at, pistols involved in the tests. (And my memory is vague.)

      I found this post but not the other:

      …the Dutch have followed the U.S. Federal Air Marshal Service in canceling an order for SIG’s beleaguered P250 pistol. … As someone who worked at SIG during the P250’s development and initial introduction it doesn’t surprise me. The P250 has never been quite right. … If not for its novel design allowing you to mix and match major components to get multiple calibers and sizes from a single serialized “frame,” the P250 never would have come this far. SIG is following in the footsteps of Beretta, going from an iconic highly respected design to a series of missteps, so-so’s, and downright disasters.

      Pistol-training – com

  3. Dienekes

    When I was a baby INS investigator, personally owned weapons were an option, and the rules were fairly decent. So it was that I carried a LW Colt Commander in .45 auto. The (real) ivory grips were non-reg but when you carry concealed…

    Naturally a management weasel eventually objected, and I had to park the Commander.

    Different galaxy, different time.

  4. Nato

    I’ve always been puzzled by the performance comparisons I read about the .40 viz-a-viz 9mm.
    You can probaby tell that my mall ninja days aren’t far behind me, but isn’t it the ‘lady 10’? I clearly remember my smirk when Hank Schraeder on the Breaking Bad pilot was talking about bringing ‘enough gun’ and comparing comparing his .40 to a +P+

    1. Brad

      Caliber wars seems like waste of time to me. There is a lot more detailed evidence that has been accumulated since the infamous 1986 FBI Miami Shootout which led directly to the 10mm ‘FBI Load’.

      Very recently I’ve seen some 9mm fans who seem to believe 9mm is a magical Goldilocks caliber, not too hot, not too cold, juuuust right. Who claim “9mm is just as lethal as .40” then flip to saying “but anything less than 9mm is wholly inadequate!”.

      Just as Hognose says, the great lethality divide is between pistol calibers and rifle calibers, not between different pistol calibers. The decades of detailed medical evidence from gunshot wounds in criminal events supports that truth. And more recent video footage of actual shooting incidents is icing on the cake.

      It makes me also wonder if the great energy devoted to pistol bullet design is as equally misplaced as is the pistol caliber debate. If we agree the primary wounding mechanism of pistol bullets is exsanguination then is a FMJ bullet really very inferior to a HP bullet? I think there is room for debate.

      1. Hognose Post author

        This is why I’m so amazed at ICE going to the MPX. I like the MPX, it’s very well thought-out, but while many ICE insiders are focused on the fact that it seems to have been selected without testing it against MP5 (which is still available from HK and Turkish makers), Skorpion Evo (which hasa much better reputation for QC than the MPX right now, and costs much less), and 9mm ARs, but to me the real mystery is why, if you’re going to a carbine/SMG form factor, why not a rifle/SBR and have greater terminal effect?

        The point of the bullet design is to try to get max penetration w/o overpenetrating. (That gal Goldilocks again!) The bullet doesn’t expand to make a bigger hole so much as to keep the hole in the intended target, just barely. Given the variability of targets no design is always perfect. (This is why the FBI tests at least used a range of targets, including barrier-protected, behind-car-structures, simulated thin and heavy clothing, etc.)

        Primary incapacitation is (1) upper CNS hit, incapacitated instantaneously, (2) core cardiovascular system hit (heart, aorta, pulmonary vein or artery), incapacitated in seconds. Exsanguination leaves a dead-man-walking time enough to do incredible mischief (think of the wounds the bad guys in that 1986 Miami shootout suffered. Fatal but not incapacitating; agents died as a result).

        1. Brad

          What expanding pistol bullets are intended for seems to depend on who you ask and when you ask.

          I don’t doubt that eliminating over-penetration is desired by many people. Though it’s debatable if that goal is really desirable in most circumstances (doesn’t an exit wound speed exsanguination?). But most commonly people seem to believe increasing lethality is the primary goal of an expanding bullet.

          Lately I’ve reevaluated a lot of my old assumptions. As a long time gun nut, I’ve been as subject to the fads and fashions as anyone else, searching for the Holy Grail of perfection. Now I have a more sober appreciation for the limitations of handguns.

          I really liked your description of personal defense handguns as a “break contact weapon”. Nicely distilling the limitations and appropriate tasking.

    2. TRX

      I always thought it was funny that FBI agents carried the .38 Special for almost 80 years before suddenly needing moar firepower, which resulted in the their moving up to the 10mm Auto before deciding their rank-and-file agents would be better off with a lesser cartridge.

      These are supposed to be the people who have labs and real-world data at Quantico to find out all about what’s needed to stop a bad guy… and over more than a century their results don’t seem to have been consistent.

      Personally, I think the FBI wanted new toys. Note that 1986-1987 was when they were buying Buick Grand Nationals for “undercover” G-rides.

  5. Brad

    video from the September 2016 Mall stabbing attack

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0oRgKglQy0o

    It’s fascinating to see how long the terrorist takes to bleed out with multiple gunshot wounds. And until he does bleed out, he is still up and actively pursuing the shooter.

    In a self defense scenario what good is inflicting a fatal wound on the attacker if the attacker still has plenty of time after taking that wound to shoot you too? Makes me question conventional wisdom.

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