TTAG Reader: What I Carry and Why – Vhyrus’s SIG P320

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My current EDC is a 9mm SIG P320 in a Safariland ALS holster. I chose the P320 for a variety of reasons. First, and most importantly, I am left handed. My requirement for a carry gun is that I am able to operate all the controls easily one-handed, which immediately cuts out 80% of the current handgun market. So, after narrowing down the field and looking at my options I decided the absolute best handgun for me would be…. a Walther PPQ! You probably didn’t see that one coming . . .

No, that isn’t a typo. The PPQ is still my favorite gun and I did carry one for awhile, but I realized something about my Bavarian buddy: Walthers are kinda hard to find and relatively expensive. If something were to happen to my PPQ (lost, stolen, confiscated, damaged) it would be a real pain financially and logistically to replace it.

Right about this time the P320 became available. It had every feature the PPQ had, but unlike the Walther they were relatively inexpensive and every freaking gun store in town was full of them. A bonus was the fact that I could change its size and caliber by simply ordering kits online. I decided to relegate my PPQ to safe queen/BBQ gun status and picked up what is now my go-to handgun. The PPQ has a slightly better trigger in my opinion, but overall the guns are very close.

As for the holster, I live in Arizona. For those of you unfamiliar with this state, you only need to know two things: 1) it is hotter than Hell (Michigan or California), and 2) open carry is legal. Because of this (and other reasons), I choose to open carry. I knew I needed a retention holster, and once again the whole left handed thing coupled with a fairly new pistol made life difficult for me.

Thankfully, one of the TTAG regulars turned me onto the Safariland ALS holsters in the comments of a post a few weeks back. It’s an excellent holster, affordable and well made with very secure retention and a lightning quick draw when needed. It’s also small enough that I can pull my t-shirt down over it if I need to conceal it for quick trips to the mall or other OC unfriendly establishments.

Yes, it does print just as badly and conspicuously as the New York Daily News, but I have yet to have someone call me out for it, and since ‘no guns allowed’ signs have no force of law in this state, concealing it is more of a courtesy to the owner than anything. In short, IDGAF.

Which brings me back to the gun. If I do have the need or desire to carry concealed, the P320 is small enough that it disappears under my shirt inside my N82 Tactical holster, yet it still sports a four-inch barrel and holds 15 rounds of 9mm. So it’s big enough for OC, small enough for CC, does everything I want, has everything I need, and is affordable, reliable, and accurate to boot. And that is why the P320 is what I carry.

(See the rest of the posts in this series here. Send your What I Carry and Why submissions with a photo to thetruthaboutguns@gmail.com with WICAW in the subject line.)

comments

  1. avatar Topher in Texas says:

    Exactly all the reasons I carry a P320c, minus the left handed aspect.

    I love it and it quickly took carry duty from my PPQ and XDm.

  2. avatar Joe R. says:

    Does it look like it’ll hold up to many (continual / over time) “kit” parts swaps? Or, does it look to get sloppy pretty quick? Like Borat says ‘after _ children my wife’s (privates) look like a wizard’s sleeve.

    1. avatar Vhyrus says:

      The gun does have a few weird quirks (the trigger clicks even if it isn’t cocked, the slide release has to be used after reassembly for the gun to function) but I don’t see anything after 6 months that makes me believe it will fail due to kit swaps. Another bonus is that since you can lift the whole chassis of guts completely out of the gun, deep cleaning is incredibly easy.

      1. avatar Rokurota says:

        What do you mean you must use the slide release after re-assembly? You can’t pull the slide back to put the gun into battery?

        1. avatar Vhyrus says:

          After you take the slide off the gun and put it back on, if you try to rack it and pull the trigger without first locking the slide back using the slide lock at least once, the trigger will not function. I am not sure if this is unique to my gun or not.

        2. avatar Topher in Texas says:

          I’ve never experienced that with mine. I wonder what might be causing that.

        3. avatar DJ says:

          It’s not unique to yours, although I never realized it did that until I read your post and tried to replicate it with mine.

          I habitually use the slide release so I’d never noticed. Hmmm… Wonder why that is.

      2. avatar Mark Chamberlain says:

        I tried to replicate what you state about using the slide release at least once after reassembly with my P320F and could not. The trigger resets once I pull the slide back and release the slide to go forward after reassembly. At any rate, one should perform a function check after reassembly and prior to reloading which means cycling the slide at least one more time and checking the slide release anyways.

  3. avatar Accur81 says:

    Good gun. My condolences on being a lefty.

    1. avatar Vhyrus says:

      It’s ok, we can reload aks way faster than the rest of you.

      1. avatar RockOnHellChild says:

        Arguably. But, coming from underneath to charge the rifle reduces it.

      2. avatar Joe R. says:

        ? true

        Good review, nice gun.
        I really lik Sig’s 2022s and a (certain lost in a fire @ sea) police remand SP 2340. However, the slide-release/takedown pin on the latter likes to migrate laterally during firing. Sig says send back to them for $200+ overhaul, and i might save up for that, but it was definitely not an expected happenstance from a Sig, even a used one.

        1. avatar Vhyrus says:

          My girlfriend’s pistol is a 2022 and it is the reason I gave the P320 a chance. I am very pleased with both.

        2. avatar Joe R. says:

          Wish more Sig offerings had the beavertail-ish grips that that 320 has. Especially on models where the back-straps are swappable and extend up to the rear slide.

        3. avatar DJ says:

          Joe, the P226 TacOps (Hate that Name) and some of the other “competition” frames have very large beavertails. Ironically, the beavertail and the name are the only thing I don’t like about mine.

    2. avatar Juanito ''Johnnie'' Ibañez says:

      Vhyrus can’t help it that he’s sinistral [look it up 🙂 ].

      Besides: “Left-handed people are always in their ‘Right Mind’.” 😉

  4. avatar jwm says:

    I’m with you on surrendering a gun to the cops. Much better a 3-5 hundred dollar gun than a 1500+ semi custom work of art.

    Glocks are like the old vw beetle. Works and is cheap and disposable.

    1. avatar RockOnHellChild says:

      I see them as more of a base model work truck…

      Cheap, reliable, readly available, low repair cost, huge aftermarket, just what you need, nothing you don’t. And who cares if it’s dirty, banged up, and has been run hard its whole life…

    2. avatar clickboom says:

      Ppq and p320 are what, 75 bucks difference in price?

      And as been said, and I guess I’ll say it again, if you have a DGU, that difference in price will be the least of your worries.

      1. avatar jwm says:

        Until you have to hire a lawyer. After a dgu there’s a real possibility that you’ll have to spend large sums of money to make sure you’re clear. Saving money on your edc is just a step in the right direction.

        Not just about dgu’s. Any major emergency can have life altering effects. That’s why I count the pennies. I’m debt free, have no mortgage or outstanding cc balances. Which frees up all my assets in times of need.

  5. avatar Hawkeye says:

    I had a Safariland for my XDm that had a bad case of the rattles. Does your holster have that same issue?

    1. avatar Vhyrus says:

      If I take it off and shake it very hard I can get it to rattle a little, but I would have to be doing some serious maneuvers to get it to do that during normal use.

  6. avatar Rokurota says:

    Good write-up. I’ve been considering moving up to a P250 or P320 as a winter carry gun, but in subcompact size. I love the design touches on the P320.

    1. avatar Kapeltam says:

      I had a P250. I sold it because the trigger, while smooth and set at 5 pounds, had the longest stroke before the hanger dropped. If the trigger on the P320 is better, I’d suggest that over the P250.

      1. avatar DJ says:

        I have both, and I’m selling the P250 to a friend for exactly that reason.

  7. avatar Nobody says:

    “no guns allowed’ signs have no force of law in this state”
    This looks to be incorrect.
    Arizona does not require any specific wording, size, location or format for
    No Firearms signs which prohibit the carrying of a firearm on private property.
    The only requirement is that the signs provide a Reasonable Notice
    that firearms are prohibited.
    They do not need a sign if the property owner has someone at the door giving notice to those who enter.
    If you enter a property that does not have signs and the owner
    or person in charge of the property ask you to remove the firearm you have to or you can be charged with trespassing.
    Copied from http://www.handgunlaw.us/states/arizona.pdf (page 8)

    1. avatar Vhyrus says:

      It is not a crime to flaunt a no guns sign in AZ (unless the establishment serves liquor). It is a crime to refuse to leave private property when asked, which is called trespassing. The owner or other lawful authority must ask you to leave before calling the cops. They cannot just call the cops on you for carrying.

      1. avatar Nobody says:

        Thanks for the explanation/clarification.

      2. avatar SpeleoFool says:

        Hmmm, I have to go back and look at the statutes on that one. I thought signs did have force of law here. Any idea if it’s different for permit carry vs. permitless (constitutional) carry?

        BTW, which do you practice, if you dont mind my asking? I started down the road of getting a permit (classes and whatnot), then decided that the best way to support constitutional carry is to not apply for a permit. I don’t like the limits on carrying into restaurants that serve alcohol, but otherwise permitless carry is nice.

        1. avatar Vhyrus says:

          I have a permit because I originally got my permit in New Mexico and the AZ permit was basically included in the class and allowed me to carry in a lot more states. I’m planning on keeping the AZ permit because I often go to other, less OC friendly states. I also hike often in Phoenix and most of the parks here require a permit to carry (which I find very odd.. I can walk through downtown with thousands of people no problem but I need a permit to carry while hiking where I will see more snakes than people in the 3 hours I’m out there.).

        2. avatar David says:

          Reasons to get a CCW in Arizona:
          1. You can carry in establishments that serve alcohol (though you can’t drink).
          2. You are exempted from the federal gun free school zone act.
          3. You can buy firearms without undergoing the NICS check.
          4.You get reciprocity with other states.

          Also, I tend to think that a court might look at you more favorably if you had a DGU and you had a CCW permit.

  8. avatar Andrew Lias says:

    Thanks for the lefty perspective. Gotta stick together on this kinda stuff, the rest of the world is out to get us with poorly adaptable ergonomics.

  9. avatar Retired LEO says:

    Don’t know about AZ but paid $347 with tax for my Walther both 9 & 40. Purchased an extra of each. In addition to the P99’s that are house guns I was able to purchase my issued and a SW99 45 a friend was moving to NY and couldn’t have.Now to add insult I have to purchase a Glock to be able to keep a private position.

  10. avatar Silverscreamer says:

    I EDC with a P320 Compact with a subcompact small frame. Makes conceal carry much easier in Texas summers. In winter I will switch back to the compact frame.

    Great system with the interchangeable frames.

  11. avatar Juanito ''Johnnie'' Ibañez says:

    I used that same Safariland Model 123 Horizontal Magazine Pouch when I worked in plain clothes when I was a LEO/CLEO.

    Loved it! 🙂

  12. avatar James Lee says:

    I’m lefty too. Ambi slide stops literally cut down my choices to Glocks, 1911, hipower, hammer fired HK and old SIG only. They do nothing but lockback when there’re still rounds in it, or slow down the slide and give me a stovepipe, or close the slide when the gun is empty. Jeez, back when i was young i thought of being lefty as a gift.

    1. avatar James Lee says:

      And SIG slide stops are too close to the hand to be operated by the trigger finger. I’m always pandering buying an M&P and cut off the right half of the slide stop. Dunno how it would influence the internals though. Seriously, how do u people deal with slide stops right under your stong thumb…

      1. avatar Sian says:

        I can’t touch mine unless I try.

  13. avatar Greg G. says:

    If you’re in to Kydex check out We Plead the 2nd. They’re in northwest Tempe and can make a holster for anything in about an hour. They also have a cash discount for locals.

  14. avatar tsbhoA.P.jr says:

    again, from tim at sig: buy the p320 in .45. this allows all swaps down the caliber range. the smaller calibers can not go up to .45.

  15. avatar Tom RKBA says:

    You cannot operate 80% of the guns on the market left handed? How is that possible? What problem is the author having?

  16. avatar Marmot says:

    Nice Benchmade Volli. I carry one too.

  17. avatar Mike R says:

    I love my PPQ (I am a lefty). The ergonomics, slim design and fantastic trigger make it a great gun.

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