SIG P320 COMPACT VS. GLOCK 19

The Contenders: Glock 19 on the left, Sig P320 Compact on the right

When one thinks of Sig Arms handguns, things like the beautiful P210, the classic P220, or even the more modern P229 come to mind. Polymer isn’t usually the first thing that comes to mind as Sig’s Pro series was, well, sort of lackluster. I don’t think anyone is going to look at any of the Sig Pro series and wonder why more people don’t use them (well ok, maybe two people that I can think of). Sig however, learned from that, and started with a completely new concept and design. They call it the P320 and they did an amazing job of building an economical, tasteful, and versatile handgun. The problem however, is this combination places the Sig P320 squarely in the sights of one of the heaviest hitters in the industry, the Glock 19, but can it compete? Sig P320 Compact vs Glock 19 – I’m not sure there be a more fitting matchup?

The overall length is close between the two when consider the butt in the OAL.
The overall length is close between the two when consider the butt in the OAL.

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock for the last nearly two decades, you’re probably aware of Glock’s compact 9mm offering, the model 19. Now in its fourth generation (some would argue the law enforcement M series to be the fifth generation), the 19 has seen an increase in popularity due to its rather compact size, 15+1 capacity, reliability, and relative affordability. In its fourth generation version it has even managed to find itself with a larger and reversible magazine release, to better accommodate lefties and interchangeable back straps to accommodate various hand sizes.

The Sig P320 is the proverbial new kid on the block. Released into wild in 2014, the Sig P320 has gained traction quickly in competition. The P320 I use in the images of this article, utilizes a compact medium frame that has had some work done by Boresight Solutions.

Weights and Measures

Glock 19 Sig P320 Comp.
Width 1.18 in. 1.3 in.
Height 4.99 in. 5.3 in.
Length 7.36 in. 7.2 in.
Weight (empty) 23.46 oz. 25.7 oz.
Capacity 15+1 15+1
Barrel Length 4.01 in 3.9 in.
Sight Radius 6.02 in 5.79 in.

*Weights and measurements are as given by the manufacturers

Trigger

The trigger in the 19 has driven me nuts. While it would break at around six and a half pounds, it was anything but crisp. It seemed like the trigger tended to get heavier up to the wall and then before it would break as well. Contrasted with the P320’s long smooth pull of also six and a half pounds, I have to call the trigger comparison in favor of the P320.

Sig P320 Compact: 1     Glock 19: 0

 

Glock 19 with its grip additions on the and Sig P320 on the right, wearing a medium grip module that received the attention of Boresight Solutions. To the right is a small grip size module.
Glock 19 with its grip additions on the and Sig P320 on the right, wearing a medium grip module that received the attention of Boresight Solutions. To the right is a small grip size module.

Modularity

Glock’s parts interchangeability and adjustable back straps are about as close as they seem to be willing to get to modularity. Forget factory available conversion kits. Sig on the other hand has elevated it to a fine art in the P320. There are two “frames” (really just the trigger pack” one is for 9mm, .40 S&W, and .357 Sig while the other is for .45 ACP. This means that if you start with a 9mm, .40, or .357, you can’t swap to a .45 or vice versa.  That said, you have frames available in full size, carry (full size grip with compact dust cover), compact, and sub compact. And all of those are available as small, medium, or large grips sizes to accommodate different hand sizes. It’s a pretty ingenious plan if you ask me. Point goes to the Sig.

Sig P320 Compact: 2     Glock 19: 0

 

Aftermarket Parts and Accessories

At present, while there is aftermarket support for the P320, particularly in the competition arena, it is nowhere close to the Glock 19 which is to be expected with a 20+ year head start and significant popularity. That said, aftermarket base pads, barrels, and sights are readily available for both pistols. Though the Glock can probably be built from 100% aftermarket parts and the same cannot be said for the Sig. This point goes to the Glock.

Sig P320 Compact: 2     Glock 19: 1

 

Factory Sights

Let’s face it, whether it’s factory 3-dot sights in tritium or their non-luminescent offering, the Sig factory sights are serviceable straight from the box. Whereas the Glock 19 generally comes with plastic “sights” that could be blown off the pistol by wayward mouse flatulence. There are exceptions to this, but they’re not common. Sights should be serviceable out of the box, even if they aren’t the end user’s preference. This point goes to the Sig.

Sig P320 Compact: 3     Glock 19: 1

 

Back to Back: The Glock 19 on the left shows as being a touch shorter in height than the Sig P320 Compact on the right. The author believes the extra height is in the Sig's slide.
Back to Back: The Glock 19 on the left shows as being a touch shorter in height than the Sig P320 Compact on the right. The author believes the extra height is in the Sig’s slide.

Bore Height

Glock has always had low bore height going for their design. Sig, well, not so much. Glock’s approach contributes to a more compact slide as well. When firing these two pistols side by side, the difference in bore height and the resulting leverage on my wrists was noticeable. While it’s possible it’s just because I’m used to the Glock, I just found this aspect of the Sig to be annoying. But that isn’t the biggest reason the slide and bore height annoy me. The extra bulk that goes with the taller bore height I seem an annoyance to me. It just feels like there more gun to deal with when carrying it. This point goes to the Glock. Your views on this may vary.

Sig P320 Compact: 3     Glock 19: 2

 

Proven Durability

The Glock has, in some form or another, been around for decades. In that time, it has been one of the most popular guns on the market. While not long on looks, it enjoys a solid reputation for durability that is well earned. In the time I spent managing a firing range with a rental counter, I could count on one hand the number of failures we had with the various Glocks we had for rent. I won’t say there haven’t been teething issues with various models and generations, but overall Glock has always managed to sort things out. The 320 on the other hand, hasn’t been around long enough to have the same reputation for reliability though it’s very looking promising, particularly since the Army found it reliable and durable enough to adopt as the replacement for the M9 9mm Service Pistol in the form of the Modular Handgun System or MHS. That said, ultimately time will tell. Give this point to the Glock for the time being.

Sig P320 Compact: 3 Glock 19:3

 

Overall

By my estimation, this comparison is a tie. It will really come down to what someone’s priorities are in a handgun when they decide between them. Both guns are solid performers and this is the closest match in competing pistols that I can recall seeing in years. I didn’t bother looking at the price as the msrp is similar and will end up varying depending on where buyers purchase them. Will I be giving up my Glock 19? No, but then, I’m not going to kick the P320 out of the safe either. If I didn’t have so much time invested in the Glock, I’d probabIy switch without any hesitation. I do fully intend to keep experimenting with the P320. Who knows, maybe it’ll end up in my carry and competition holsters yet as I’m tempted every time I pick one up.

Thank you to:

Sig Sauer

Glock

TaranTactical Innovations

Boresight Solutions

This post originally appeared as an article in the May 2017 issue of Dillon’s the Blue Press.

Building Your EDC On A Budget – Building Your EDC For Less Than A Benjamin

So, maybe you have to travel and you are concerned about losing your good knife or flashlight. Or maybe you are new to the concept of EveryDay Carry (EDC) but are limited on funds and don’t want to spend the next month eating ramen. I’m leaving guns out of this discussion partly because legality varies by state.

I’m sure most of us already carry our ID, phone, and keys. Whether you use a wallet or not is up to you. Lately I haven’t been. I have a gorgeous Stingray wallet but it’s kind of bulky.

EDC FLASHLIGHT

I wasn’t real serious about carrying a flashlight early on in my adulthood. One night I happened to be carrying an original Surefire 6P. On that occasion, I found myself in need of a light to temporarily blind someone who was dead set on my letting him ride in my truck. Worked great. He pulled his hands up to Continue reading “Building Your EDC On A Budget – Building Your EDC For Less Than A Benjamin”

Effective Communication Trumps Guns

Today, I have something a bit different from what I usually post. The incident used as an example is from about 3 years ago. Now, let me preface this by saying I am not now nor have I ever been in law enforcement.
I come from a background of management. My former employer put a lot of emphasis on effectively communicating. So with that understanding, this incident has stood out to me as a shining example of piss poor communication. And I’m not blaming the officer 100 percent for this. The stopee (as I will call him) also fails to communicate effectively. More officer training in the area of effective communication could help. Instead of asking the stopee to get his wallet, he could have asked him where his ID was located. The stopee, instead of just going for it assuming the officer knew what he was doing, could have said to the officer, “Hey no problem. It’s in my glove compartment. How would you like to proceed?” Craig gets into this in his post as well. This incident was also a topic of discussion in a class I took with Travis Haley.

Continue reading “Effective Communication Trumps Guns”

When Is .40 S&W A Reasonable Choice?

With the gun enthusiast mainstream wholesale transitioning to 9mm for self defense use, we hear cries that any other cartridges are unsuitable. Most don’t bother to consider the context behind this.  Right now, we’re seeing Gen 3 Glock 22 police trade in guns. They tend to be very affordable. Many may be tempted to pass them up in favor of a Glock 17 or 19. Or maybe even some other manufacturers offering. The question is, are the former worth considering for self defense?

For the hobbyist level shooter who actually shoots regularly, it may not make Continue reading “When Is .40 S&W A Reasonable Choice?”

What’s the Most Obscure Ammo?

So just for the fun of it, I decided to do something different today. So, in the comments, I want readers to name the most obscure ammunition they can think of. I’ll go first. Let’s have some fun. Maybe we’ll even learn something.

.38/.45 Clerke

Your turn.

Don’t Buy the Wobbly AR

One of my commenters here pointed out that the Mini-14 doesn’t wobble like an AR does. My response to him included the wording of the title of this post. I couldn’t help my urge to turn it into a title. I have heard that I have impulse control issues. Anyway, no matter.

If an AR wobbles, it’s generally in one of two places, sometimes both. The upper and lower fit and/or the traditional handguard. We now see some AR Continue reading “Don’t Buy the Wobbly AR”

Why Do People Hate the 1911?

Recently I saw the general discussion come up on why someone doesn’t trust the 1911 for self defense. I found it interesting in that it seems many people trust guns based on manufacturer or model reputation rather than individual firearm itself.  Nonetheless, hate for the 1911 has seemed to be growing.

First, the 1911 type handgun has enjoyed a tremendous amount of success for the last 25-30 years or so. I’m sure many can remember when it was unusual Continue reading “Why Do People Hate the 1911?”