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View Full Version : P7 vs Sig 232 concealment


Shadow9
September 11, 2011, 05:12 PM
I've got a Sig 232 at the moment, and looking into selling that and another to get into a P7 - as I noticed the P7 is a slim, very compact, 8-shot (M8, preferred) 9mm pistol. Also H&K, low-bore-axis, and ultra-fast single-action/squeeze-cock pistol, and the gas-delayed blowback certainly doesn't hurt...
My question is, would this conceal as easily as a P232? I tried the Glock 19, and unless I'm wearing a second overshirt (vest/short-sleeve +1 shirt, etc), the G19 prints, even in a IWB holster at 4-5 o'clock. Specifically, it's the bottom edge of the grip/magazine and the front and back straps of the handle that show through, not the blocky top (I carry FBI-cant usually).

Will a P7 show up the same way? Or is a P7 actually more slender than a G19? My other concern, as I've read with P7's, is holsters are $$$ due to being custom made, and often they need to be carried high, as trying to get a wrap around the squeeze-lever when drawing is hard since the lever goes right up behind the trigger itself...

Or, given form and function, would the P232 be sufficient as an SD choice? I'd be loading it with either Rem 102gr GS or Fed HydraShocks or FMJ, or a mix of FMJ and JHP...

The only other choice I thought of was a Sig P239, but they are about the same width as a G19, taller bore-axis, and it's the height of the handle that usually affects my carry, as it's the edge of the magazine/bottom of grip that shows...

I also do not want to carry one of the teeny "pinky-wrapper" LC9/LCP style pistols, albiet they are great for CCW...

PSP
September 11, 2011, 08:33 PM
I've carried both guns at one time or another. Although the P232 and P7 are essentially the same size, the Sig is significantly lighter, especially the very lightweight alloy frame blued P232. Both models are compact enough for pretty easy carry duty and either will suffice for defense needs.

Here's a pic of a Sig on a P7 to show how similiar they are.
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i186/ripley16/Gone/P232onP7.jpg

chris in va
September 11, 2011, 11:50 PM
very compact,

Nope, not really. Quite a good sized gun actually. Takes a special holster with that grip cocker as well.

Remember, with concealment it's not so much the barrel length as the grip size that makes the difference.

Shadow9
September 12, 2011, 04:30 AM
Nope, not really. Quite a good sized gun actually. Takes a special holster with that grip cocker as well.

So, thus even with an M8 single-stack, I'd be running into the same print-issues as the G19.

THUS - I should disembark on a quest for a P7, pick up a G19, and shoot the [email protected]#% out of it...and lose the P232 for ineffectiveness (the more I read up on .380/shot placement/stress during combat/penetration, a 9mm seems more appropriate in any case...)

AK103K
September 12, 2011, 08:59 AM
Go in the direction you feel best. Your the one who has to make the choice for you, nobody else can make it for you.

Personally, I prefer full sized handguns, as they are usually the easiest to shoot well with and carry more on board ammo. Hiding them isnt hard at all, but you have to want to do it. Unless you are wearing inappropriate clothing, printing is really a non issue. If you normally wear "fitted" clothes, and arent willing to change, then youre going to have problems with all of them, even the little ones.

If you havent shot a P7 yet, Id suggest you try one first. They are great guns, but they have some quirks that tend to limit them, or more so, limit you to them.

They are not a gun that plays well with others, and you really need to dedicate yourself to them if your going to carry one. They arent something to switch back and forth with.

You also have to be careful with holster selection, as the wrong one can cause you grief. Make sure the holster covers and protects the mag release. If the release isnt protected, things like seat belts, steering wheels, chair rails, etc, can leave your mag in embarrassing places and you with a single shot in your holster.

If you carry it in an appendix position, be sure the holster has enough bulk below the belt to keep the gun and holster in place and from flipping out when you bend forward.

Having had a couple of P230's for years, and carrying one, mostly as a back up, all the time, my Glock 26's have replaced them for that spot. The SIG's are great guns and all, but the 26's just offer more in a package that isnt really any bigger.

Pilot
September 12, 2011, 10:17 AM
Nope, not really. Quite a good sized gun actually. Takes a special holster with that grip cocker as well.

Not quite. Inexpensive Uncle Mike's holster for my P7 PSP. It carries great, and is well balanced.

http://i330.photobucket.com/albums/l440/Pilot641/HK%20P7%20PSP/HKP7.jpg

http://i330.photobucket.com/albums/l440/Pilot641/HK%20P7%20PSP/HKP7PSP.jpg

Noreaster
September 12, 2011, 10:31 AM
I've had and carried a P230 & P232 and really enjoyed them for concealed carry. Just something about those guns that makes them handy and easy to carry. I switched to a Walther Ppk and preferred the Sig even though the Sig was bigger. Now I carry a G33 but wish I still had the P232 as I carried the P232 more.

roman3
September 12, 2011, 10:36 AM
Well an M8 is expensive. And extra mags are very expensive.

Some good deals (and some overpriced deals) on surplus German police P7 (the PSP style gun). Those mags for the PSP, which are different from the M8 mags are also pricey.

The gun is a heavy hunk of steel, and the grip is rather large for a single stack gun - but the P7 is a very thin gun with few protrusions.

The M8's mag release levers stick out a bit but do not interfer really with concealment. But the location of the M8 and M13's levers do take some getting used to.

But the P7 PSP has nothing sticking out- one of the flatest smoothest guns around.

Skadoosh
September 12, 2011, 10:40 AM
The HK P7's are in my opinion, the better gun of the two. Similar in size, the P7 has a longer barrel...and it's a 9x19. I have shot both and the HK is just as fast on follow up shots, despite the more potent round, because of the low axis of the barrel. While the P230/232 are extremely well built, the P7 are amazing guns. They can be hard to find and are quite expensive though...

HKFan9
September 12, 2011, 06:55 PM
I carry my P7 in one of those 10$ uncle mikes IWB and it works well. I just want to say the P7 and the P232 are probably two of my favorite guns... however I still never purchased a P232 because of it being a .380. I don't mind .380 but I had a smaller and lighter 9mm and ammo on the 9mm is half the cost.

I think you will love the P7.. but it is bigger than some over 9mm's but I prefer to carry mine, I tried a Kahr PM-9 I felt it was too small for me to get a good proper grip on... when I would draw and fire it.. I felt I had to keep readjusting my grip.... hence why I carry the P7.

JH
September 12, 2011, 08:29 PM
Shadow9: The Sig 232 and the P7M8 are two of my favorites. I'm about 5'9" and find the 232 much more comfortable and easier to conceal. The bottom of the backstrap on the P7 prints on me and it is signifiantly heavier than the 232. As far as P7 holsters go, my favorites are the Milt Sparks VM-2 followed by the Rosen ARG Plus. Del Fatti holsters are preferred by many at Park Cities Tactical's "Cult of the P7" forum.

Wiskey_33
September 12, 2011, 08:32 PM
I had a custom leather holster made up for my P7 and it became my favorite carry piece for the cooler months.

loose_holster_dan
September 13, 2011, 08:58 PM
i've never had anything that conceals as well as the p7 short of a pocket pistol. other than being a little heavy, it is very comfortable, and that can be negated by the right holster.

Shadow9
September 14, 2011, 06:06 PM
JH - you must be of a slender build then - do G19's pring on you the same? Again, that's been my concern - the rounded bottom of the 232 seems to slip right under the radar with my shirt selections, and the only part that occasionally prints is the front of the magazine/pinky extension, which when positioned right, hides easily. The blocky-style of the P7 has me concerned that, despite being the same O/A size as a P232, will actually show easier.

My other thought was a P239, as I've heard they're VERY accurate, point quickly, and the recoil, although having more muzzle-flip than a Glock/P232/HK, is much smoother and easily controlled. I saw one recently, and it seemed a couple of hairs more slender than a G19, with MUCH less blocky edges to catch clothing/etc. The idea of being open to all the Sig accessories for the 220/226 family is also appealing (SRT trigger/Nightsights/barrel-interchangability).
Problem: Never held one/put one on me to see how it hides. Or shot one. I shot a Ruger LC9 recently, VERY soft/smooth recoil, but I didn't like how tall it was...same idea?

AK103K
September 14, 2011, 06:31 PM
If youre thinking of the P239, you might as well look at the P228/229 or P226. The P239 isnt really any smaller than they are, and the slightly larger guns still carry about the same (Ive owned and carried all of them). You also get about half again more the ammo in them over the P239.

Shadow9
September 16, 2011, 05:40 PM
AK - ..and if I'd bother going the size of a 220/226 platform, I'll just size-down from that and upgrade to a Glock 19...which is the exact pistol I turned down to get my P232 in the first place (due to concealability issues with G19).

That said, despite the gleaming reports on 232's, I looked at the engineering of their feed systems vs the Bersas - and wasn't surprised why I've read of more jams with 232's than Bersas - 232's do the same stupid mistake Walther did, split the feed ramp into 2 parts, and have the round chamber from nearly a full bullet-width below the breech, requiring the nose to travel across that little split. That induces ALOT of angle change required from the tiny light .380 round, and explains why the things need feed-ramp polishing and a very sturdy wrist to shoot, as well as get hung-up on that little split between the feed-ramps.

Bersas on the other hand have the bullet nearly lined up with the breech from the top of the mag - the slide just pushes it forward, at a shallow angle across the feed ramp, and into the chamber. No odd angles, no fussy ammo choosing, and half the cost of production. Did I mention faster (and manually-controlled) slide release and mag-release? Someone talk me out of getting a Firestorm .380 with a matching Firestorm .22 for practice.

inb4 "9mm/.40/.45 is more effective and smaller!"
True - the 9mm is more potent, and there are smaller 9mm/40/45 pistols out there, but I'm one of those people with the "ew, where's my pinky-support?!" complex. Plus, a full-size .45 is on the upper limit of my recoil-control capabilities - a tiny/compact is out of the question. I'd rather land 6 .380's where I want, than nail a bystander with a stray .45...

Lastly - even the subcompacts are still bulky in width, and it's the width I am concerned about. Kahrs are the only thing that fit most of the criteria, but I don't trust them yet, and the XD/1911 grips they have mean I point those at the ground (I come from the Austrian school of pistols (swept-handles) ;P - also my motivation for the P7.)

Dr_2_B
September 16, 2011, 06:27 PM
I'd be hard pressed to recommend against the P7. One issue I ran into is that I am used to carry in a very thin kydex IWB holster. I wasn't willing to put my P7 in kydex because I didn't want to scratch it. So the leather added a little thickness. Still, it's a honey.

PSP
September 16, 2011, 07:43 PM
Someone talk me out of getting a Firestorm .380
Won't try to talk you out of the Bersa, but I'll say this; I've had both guns, a new Bersa and a used Sig, and I found the Sig to be the superior gun. I even bought a FS22 but it was a very disappointing pistol.

Lastly - even the subcompacts are still bulky in width, and it's the width I am concerned about. Kahrs are the only thing that fit most of the criteria, but I don't trust them yet,
The Kahr that most directly compares to the P7 is the T9. The two pistols are very similar in most every measurement. My all steel Kahrs have been very reliable, FWIW.
http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i186/ripley16/Pistols/P7andKahr004.jpg

HKFan9
September 17, 2011, 02:22 AM
I would never say Bersa/ Firestorm in the same sentence as Sig... let alone recomend you buy a Bersa.

Sig in my hands... has been a lot more reliable.

I have sold lot's of Bersa's to customers... against my recommendation.. and I am still never surprised when one comes back with issues.

JH
September 17, 2011, 04:29 PM
"JH - you must be of a slender build then - do G19's pring on you the same? Again, that's been my concern - the rounded bottom of the 232 seems to slip right under the radar with my shirt selections, and the only part that occasionally prints is the front of the magazine/pinky extension, which when positioned right, hides easily. The blocky-style of the P7 has me concerned that, despite being the same O/A size as a P232, will actually show easier. "

Shadow9: I am slender and the G19 prints as well. On the P7, both the rear of the backstrap and the back of the slide printed easily. My experience with the 232 has been the same as yours. It does not print. With regard to Kahrs, the PM9 is my IWB choice over the 232 & P7 these days. If you do some online searching, you will find this model has been highly reliable. My PM9 and K9 Elite have never faltered. The K9 is about the same size as the 232 but weighs a few ounces more.

HKFan9
September 17, 2011, 10:57 PM
My PM-9 was a great performing little gun... I will give it that... but it was TOO small for my hands... I felt I had to keep readjusting my grip. I like a bigger heavier gun for when I need to put rounds on target in a stress moment.

I carry a P7... a SA Champion Operator... or a Sig P239

Shadow9
September 21, 2011, 11:15 AM
So, I finally got to hold the famed P7/PSP - and I've declined. It's a fantastic weapon, but y'all weren't kidding - it's a dense little thing. Plus, looking at it up close, the ACTUAL grip width (my concern) is in fact very close to a Gen4 G19. Plus, the squeeze-cock system required that distracting extra mental step, and the squeeze-function was a bit of a hand-biter. However, lifting from "holstered" it points VERY naturally - but again, I couldn't do the grip to it comfortably, and would have a hard time hiding it.

So, the 232 remains my daily "ez-hide" weapon, and looking into a Kahr or a Sig239 for the "big-gun" approach.

What's the story on Para-Ordinance? Any owners/users?

Pilot
September 21, 2011, 01:33 PM
^^^^^^

You may have changed your mind if you shot it and actually got to use the squeeze cocker. The gun is heavy, but it it also different, and that's why I think some shy away from it. I tend to gravitate towards things that are different.

C0untZer0
September 21, 2011, 04:25 PM
The Glock 19 is listed at 1.18" wide, but when I take the calipers to my Gen 3 G34 & G17L and measure where the grips flare out a little, (right above and behind the mag release button), I get 1.24" maybe the G19 Gen 4 is significantly slimmer than the 34 and 17L gen 3s - I don't know, but that's not counting the magazine release. The P7M8 is 1.1" wide at it's widest point - that's the same as a Kahr PM9 when you factor in the Kahr's slide stop.

Well anyway, if it's not your cup of tea that's OK.

While I had my P7M8 out I did a little dry firing. It's just a natural pointer and the trigger is so light and smooth - it's easy to do perfect dry-firing drills with it. It takes a lot of practice and a lot of concentration to get good follow-through with a Glock trigger. My P7M8 is so easy to maintain sight picture... the trigger just breaks and there's no movement of the pistol. There are so many things about the pistol that are just fantastic...

I wish I could go back in time... Walmart in Leesville, LA was selling them for $550.00 in 1985. If I could go back in time I would have bought five of them.

AK103K
September 21, 2011, 06:37 PM
Walmart was ripping you off. :)

I paid $450 for my P7M13 right around that time. I also paid $450 for my HK94 right around the same time. $350 more made it an MP5. :)

GONIF
September 21, 2011, 07:21 PM
The hot set up in the P7 is the P7PSP with a DeFatti IWB holster. There are other holsters that work as well and are easyer and cheaper to buy . The P7M8 has the mag release in the wrong spot IMHO for CCW . The P7PSP has it on the bottom and can't snag or cause an accedental mag drop. There are still some nice used P7PSP's around for $600.00 . The only downfall on the P7PSP is the mags are differant and cost more. No other CCW pistol will have as nice a trigger that is as safe as the squeese cocking H&K P7 . http://www.hkparts.net/shop/pc/viewPrd.asp?idproduct=2093&idaffiliate=7 these are the cream of the crop in condition and quality .
AT THIS PRICE THEY ARE STILL A DECENT VALUE if you want a P7PSP. there are however many cheaper guns that would work for CCW .

FairWarning
September 22, 2011, 05:49 PM
"I wish I could go back in time... Walmart in Leesville, LA was selling them for $550.00 in 1985. If I could go back in time I would have bought five of them. "

I'd buy 25 at that price. You'd have no problem making a hefty profit. And I'd keep 2 for myself. :D

Shadow9
September 23, 2011, 01:15 AM
I think the next step then is looking into a P9/T9 from Kahr, or the 239. Again, the P7 is insane, I LOVE swept handles and am a HUGE fan of low-bore axis, but for some reason, that pistol just did not feel right in the hand...and I can't explain why. Although, I am open to shooting one. Problem, finding one to shoot. :P

Held a CW9 while at the same place that had the P7...gotta say, the sights lined up FAST, and the fact that ALL the Kahr parts are made here in New England is a huge plus (same reason I went with the Sig - I can do an hour-drive and get any parts I need vs. waiting for shipping/orders/etc.).
Con for the Kahr - their triggers are rather LONG. Excellent feel/break, but long to get there.

RE: Glock triggers - to be honest, I'm not too worried about a Glock trigger, as their aftermarket is SO tremendous that one can acquire/fix up a NICE trigger for glocks quite easily, something that would be in the fixin's for me getting a G19.

Last note: the P7 may have 1.1" at the widest point, but the Sig 232 must go under 1" at the bottom of the backstrap/mag area, where JH and I were both mentioning printing with the P7. Also, when I went to conceal the 239 that was there, I found that the rounded off back of the slide, the shorter grip, and narrow handle all made for a much "easier" hiding 9mm than the G19 was. It's odd how width can have such little relevance to hiding - the Steyr M40A1 is listed at 1.18", and does not really change width much between the slide and the heel, but that thing prints on me way too easily...hence why I don't carry it.

I appreciate all the feedback folks! If relevant, I'll post any additional discoveries/updates.