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Over at members are all aTwitter about the Connecticut State Police’s decision to switch from the .40 caliber SIG SAUER P229 to the .45 caliber SIG SAUER P220. Unfortunately, I can’t decipher the forum’s verification code letters and the software refuses to provide an alternative. So for all I know they love the idea! And hate it! (It is a forum.) According to the contract posted at, the po-po’s move to a higher caliber SIG will cost the Nutmeg State $280,224. Approximately. For 1,250 pistols. Estimated. That’s a mere $224 per gun ($993 retail). But the contract doesn’t tell you how how much SIG’s paying for 300 old P229’s. Minimum. So the CT Staties get less bullets but bigger ones and more recoil for the ladies (if less snappiness). Gun buyers get access to a ton of lightly-used P229s—if they’re military or LEO. How great is that? [h/t K75RT]

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  1. Recoil won’t be an issue for the State Troopers (male or female) grip size would be more of a concern. I wonder if they get an option? Maybe they should have gone to a P226 in a .40? I hope they’re happy.

    • The 220’s grip is slimmer than the 229- this isn’t a Glock 21 we’re talking about here! The 220 is one of the most ergonomic handguns out there IME 🙂

  2. Agencies change guns like underwear anymore, because the taxpayer is an everlasting sugar daddy.

    Before the militarization of the police circa 1994 cops would carry the same S&W .357 for their entire career. Now you would think Glocks have a “use by” date on them the way they trade out perfectly good guns every other year.

    Anybody who thinks its great the cops are always buying new toys is a gun dealer or a fool.

    • +1

      I just took advantage of Sig’s Father’s Day Special to swap out the springs and sights on my mystery round count “Made in W. Germany” 226. I got it second or third-hand and put 4-5k down the tube. My friend did the same on his 10k+ 226. They were working just fine, but it was ~30% off, so why not? How much would an overhaul have cost the Connecticut taxpayer vs. all new guns?

    • And think of what that does to an officer’s proficiency changing handguns every couple years? I think it is best if they stick with one firearm for a very long time and get very familiar with it.

    • More trade-ins mean lower prices!

      Especially if they’re lightly-used (only fired for qualifying), sounds like a good deal, especially if the new guns are subsidized by grabbers..

    • The traded in Sig P229’s were placed in service in 1994; just shy of 20 years ago. Some guys didn’t have rifling left in their barrels. Yeah, $224 to replace a 20 year old gun that has been hammered on for 20 years is not tax abuse. Oh, and the $224 per gun cost came from…MONEY SEIZED FROM DRUG DEALERS. Not a penny of tax money was spent on replacement of these sidearms. If you’re looking for tax waste, look elsewhere. It is definitely in CT but certainly not with the Connecticut State Police, the most underfunded, under equipped state police agency in the country.

    • Not true. My father got a new revolver almost every other year in the ’70s/80’s. They switched from Model 10’s, to Colt Police Positive, to Ruger, to Smith and Wesson magnums, first a model 19, then 66 before they finally switched to 9mm S&W’s around 85. Today, I buy my own firearms, in agency guidelines, as do a great many of us. I carry a .40 P229 on duty, switching to P220 in January.

    • Nice! This is the FIRST time I’ve heard a commonsense – and totally accurate – critique of the endless gun swapping among our ever more militarized police. Our friends in DHS won’t rest until our nation has been transformed into something like, say, China or Saudi Arabia. Here’s an example from rural Alaska, where I commercial fished for years. The village of Dillingham has 80 security cameras to monitor its 2,400 citizens. A camera for every 30 people. And there’s nothing there! DHS happily ponied up a quarter of a million dollars, responding to the police chief’s concern that Russia is 800 miles away.

  3. The posters in the thread were almost universally against.

    Then like 1 out if every 3 threads in a gun forum on the internet, the discussion turned into a conversation about calibers and ended with people talking about Glocks.

  4. But back to the subject. I have heard people love and hate p220’s. I don’t understand the move to .45’s, because 40’s are sufficient, but that’s another story. I think the p239’s were fine, and switching was $280,000 down the drain for more expensive ammunition and not much more realistic need.

  5. Given that CT is $192.3 million in the hole as of July 1st, it amazes me that they had to spend $280,000 for something that will not make much difference in the field. However, all the local CT po-po starting with Bridgeport have been crying they are outgunned recently switched over:

    “The Bridgeport Police Department recently signed with Smith & Wesson to equip its patrol officers and detectives with the .45-caliber military and police semi-automatic pistol.

    The weapon replaces the .40-caliber Sig Sauer semi-automatic pistols that police officers have carried since 2004.

    Lt. John Cueto said the .45-caliber bullets that will be used by police officers in the new guns will be larger and have more stopping power than the 9mm, which was similar to the .40-caliber currently used by officers.”

    Read more:

    The justification seems to be, the 9mm and .40 are the same, the bad guys all have 9mm, therefore, the police need something bigger, ergo, they need .45 to continue the arms race. I am not sure that argument flies, but for the general public, it sounds good and makes for the reason why they need more money.

    • the bad guys all have 9mm, therefore, the police need something bigger, ergo, they need .45 to continue the arms race.
      I wonder when we’ll see them starting to buy 460 Rowland conversions.

    • What it sounds like they need is the WWII sub gun know as the Grease Gun, lightweight, cheap and with lot’s of .45 firepower.

  6. They should have read the post here, about a couple months back, how the 12g and .22cal are the two most effective man stoppers. 🙂

  7. I know someone can rebutt this right away, because they are fine guns… and granted mine was a “lightly used” Louisiana State Trooper pistol, but my 220 had problems feeding JHP, most particularly PMC Starfire, and they were nasty face plant jams that would cause the round to push into the brass rendering it dangerous (i forgot what they call it), but it did it with all sorts of JHP, fed FMJ and all ball ammo very very well. Reverse of what CT troopers are doing, I have a 229 2tone that I just love with all my heart, it eats and eats and doesnt stop. Oh well…
    Hope they are getting as good of a deal on ammo as they are on the actually pistols themselves. .40 s&w is a little cheaper. Unless its Tul.

    • The only reason I can think of is penetration through barriers. In theory a 220 grain .45 ACP bullet will penetrate a car door slightly better than a 180 grain .40 S&W bullet just because it has more mass (momentum). I would personally stay with the .40 S&W and the higher magazine capacity.

      Then you get people who say that .45 ACP is a larger diameter bullet and would have a slightly higher statistical probability of slicing an artery or causing a larger hole and a slightly faster bleed-out.

      • fo’ five also has 0.13345″2 surface area, so I don’t know that it would penetrate better. Also, car doors won’t stop a .22, so 40 vs. 45 is moot. I think it is safe to say that this is one of those “spend it or they’ll reduce our budget” situations that make government so efficient.

        • “fo’ five also has 0.13345″2 surface area”

          Should have said “more than .40”

          0.45^2 x 3.14 is 0.63585

          0.40^2 x 3.14 is 0.544

        • Sensible if you don’t do your research. The replacement of these guns cost the tax payers $0. It was funded via asset forfeiture (drug money) by State Troopers. Not many other state agencies can say their primary equipment cost the tax payers nothing.

  8. Or it could just be that someone got a nice kickback. I’m a CT resident and this seems to be a common thing with a lot of the PD’s around here. I have a few friends that are cops and honestly, I do a heck of a lot more practice shooting than any of them. Granted that may be an exception, but I cant imagine there are that many worn out Sigs being carried by our staties. And if “firepower” is the issue, why not call S&W and see about a run of .41 magnums? Just anothet waste of tax payer money but this state loves doing that anyways.

  9. I’ve shot .40 and .45 Glocks, Sigs and XD’s side by side and I feel the .40 S&W had much worse recoil. The .45 tends to be a more gentle push for me whereas the .40 has a harsh snap that I find more damaging to fast follow up shots.

      • Don:

        Same experience here but I attribute it to being a left eyed dominant-right handed shooter. If I shoot fast I don’t have to reaquire my sight picture.

        The steel framed 1911 absorbs a lot of energy reducing muzzle flip. Most of the recoil is in the horizontal plane. I have never shot SiG or XD in 45 so I can’t really compare it to a 1911. I feel like my XDm compact 9 has more muzzle flip than my 1911. My wife’s M-9 is about the same as a 1911.

    • I do personally find the .45 much nicer to shoot than .40. It could be a function of experience but I am much more accurate at rapid fire with the .45 than the .40. Slow fire makes no difference.


  10. That’s a lot of money to spend on guns that will rarely be fired and, on the rare occasion when they are fired, won’t be fired well.

  11. I’m 5-0, and I carry a .40 caliber. I don’t see the need to “upgrade” to a .45 caliber. The .40 Smith and .45 ACP can both penetrate barriers well. The FBI test protocols of heavy clothing, windshield glass, and sheet metal are realistic barriers that police rounds will encounter. Of course, police rounds also hit the occasional cruiser rooftop and locker room ceiling, as has also been painfully documented on TTAG on numerous occasions.

    I’ve had nothing but positive experiences with P220, P226, and P229. It pisses me off that government taxes us so much, in order to spend money needlessly.

    If you have any info on purchasing a 229 at a great price, I’m all ears.

    • My first, and, admittedly cynical, take was fewer stray rounds due to smaller magazines.

      Anyway, yeah, all government budgets have perverse incentives. If you don’t spend what you have, you get less the following year.

  12. [Comment caught in spam filter and released. Please ping [email protected] if it happens again. My apologies.]

    I think an increasing number of police agencies are beginning to understand that the FBI studies supporting the superiority of 9mm, 10 mm or 40 caliber over other options are all post hoc justifications designed to support what ever choice the Bureau has made at a gvien point in time. US Army analysis has shown that the most important component of lethality (once you hit your target) is bullet mass. Bigger is always better and these Departments are deciding that they don’t want any fight they get into to be fair. The last Army study was done after the switch to the M-9 but it merely confirmed what had been known since the early part of the 20th century, i.e., the 45 ACP round has a significantly higher lethality index than smaller rounds. In military studies the lethality is based on where you are hit and how much time you have to live prior to initial treatment in a typical combat environment. Additionally, the sound and flash from a 45 can have a significant psychological effect on an assailant. Even if the “legendary” instant lethality is a myth if a BG believes it he will act differently that he would have when confronted by an officer wielding a 9mm or 40cal.

    • Handgun stopping power test have been done ad nauseum. Back in the day, the 9mm was considered to be relatively ineffective. Now, there are all sorts of short – barreled 9mms and .380’s. Some even promote the .22 LR for self-defense, and the .380 has been infused with new life.

      Bullet mass is certainly a factor, but there are many others. Perhaps a single shot from a .45 is more effective than a .40, but the .40 has more capacity. If I can trust my life to a .40, so can a CT Trooper.

      • Better ammunition has made smaller calibers more lethal. Those improvements are availble for the 45. I use 230g JHP for my self defense rounds. They are proportionally more lethal than the same technology used in 380, 9mm and 40 cal rounds. (tissue damage is a function of volume which increases with the cube of the diameter of the wound)

        There are now 45s with almost the same capacity as a 9mm. The XD has a 13 round capacity. I would gladly trade two rounds to get the higher lethality of the 45 ACP.

      • Ah, the old 9mm is ineffective argument. I know, you weren’t exactly saying that.

        I guess I’m the oddball, my CC is a SIG 225. 8 +1 rounds of 9mm, 125gr pills would still ruin anyone’s day… And 16 more on the hip. But with TX rules in mind, I like carrying it a lot better than my 229.

  13. Doesn’t seem like a smart move by the police department, but for the rest of us who might be looking into getting a cheaper, lightly used P229…. SCORE!

      • Is that a CT thing? A local guy that specializes in selling LE trade ins just got a bunch of trade in .40 229s. I bought a trade in 220 from him a while ago. He never discloses the PD.

  14. Give ’em a list of approved firearms, a list of the LEO discounts available out there, and call it done.

    You’ll get a sidearm chosen by the individual officer so it is more likely to be shot well, and as they’ve paid their own hard-earned cash, they’ll take better care of it. Plus the tax-payer is off the hook.

    I’ve spent more money than I even care to try to imagine on the tools I use to make my living, and as a result, I have done my best to buy smart, and buy once.

  15. won’t address the which caliber is best. no handgun that can be carried all day is powerful. .45 is a popgun compared to rifles and shotguns. but all 3 of the rounds,9,40or 45 will do the job under the right conditions. as for the bg being scared based on the caliber you’re pointing at him, forget about it. if he’s not doped out of his mind he’ll be afraid no matter the caliber. nobody looks down the muzzle and says,hmm,it’s just a 9, it won’t hurt. 22 to 45, they all look the same from the muzzle.

  16. If you folks click on the red highlighted it has the whole contract written in pdf format it shows the whole process and that NONE of the trade in guns can be sold to the public only LEO… some it is legal bs a lot of pertinant info….

    • When at the gun shop or range there is almost always some OFWGs talking about how the 9mm is not as deadly as the good ole .45 . I tell them bullshit and when they start to argue I ask which one of them will volunteer to be shot in the face with a 9mm. So far no takers.
      Reminds me of the King of the Hill episode where Bobby is trying to decide between the 9mm and .45 . Hank tells “Bobby, as long as you choose a Sig Sauer you dont have to worry about that, just make sure you use propane”

  17. Seems wastefull as far as the money being spent to upgrade from relatively new guns to even newer guns. That being said, I’ve always been in favor of bigger, heavier bullets. Bigger holes are almost always better.

  18. 8 round mag compacity… seems stupid to me. if they are going to switch, why not go with an XD… 13 rounds of 45. they will be carrying 4 extra mags. seems very unnnecesary to me. only 8 rounds.

  19. 8 rounds, 13 rounds, 16 rounds. Its all anecdotal. The real question has to be asked is simple; What is the average number of rounds fired during an officer involved shooting?
    Hi cap mags are needed on the battlefield and on the range, but are they needed for duty carry. Do police often execute rapid magazine changes like they are in a IDPA tourney.
    When the Zombies rise or the Russians invade give me a Calico M950 or a Micro Uzi. Otherwise I will take a single stack 1911

    • If it were Zombies, I’d take a semi auto with a long barrel for accuracy that has the highest magazine capacity. Caliber/Stopping Power is not going to matter to a head shot for a Zombie LOL If I had to pick up some guns, I’d have a few 9mm semi auto’s with high capacity magazines, as many magazines as possible, a few .223 semi-auto’s for close range in single shot mode and a .308 with a good scope for long range sniping. Oh… I’d leave the crossbow to Darryl

  20. The first pull on a Sig might be heavier, (it is at 10.0lbs) the follow up shots are at 4.4lbs. Either in SA/DA mode, the trigger pull is MUCH smoother. Sig’s are some of the nicest guns out there, are very dependable and are in use by the Navy Seals, Air Force, etc… The S&W M&P is a striker fired pistol at 6.5lb trigger pull. I’d take the smooth 4.4lb trigger over a striker 6.5lb click trigger pull that is actually a bit spongy regarding the striker fired pistols. This takes spongyness takes some getting use to for accuracy. They are trading more rounds in the .40 for the less round in a higher caliber of the .45. I wonder why they didn’t offer for the officers to keep their Sig’s instead of the Smith and Wesson M&P’s. Now it’s a great gun and all, but when you have been married to a Sig for many years, many who of which have had this gun since 2004, it will take some getting use to. So in that case, it will take MANY times at the range, to get use to their new weapon.

  21. Everyone is a specialist when it comes to calibers!! Truth be told, 9mm has been an effective weapon in many wars, and continues to be one of the most popular rounds out there!! Like in hunting, 30-30 used to take everything down in its day, but since there is a huge business, and brain washing that comes with every new caliber, every one buys in and becomes a pro!! A well placed punch drops a person, so does a bullet, from 22cal to 50BMG!! Reality is that practice makes it perfect! 45 is like an old pair of good boots, most people grew up around it, or with it! So the fact that people favour it is natural! Sigs are great guns, from 22 to 45! I know officers that never go to the range in between their quals, and in my humble opinion it is a shame!!!


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