(Feature Image Courtesy: Recoilweb.com)
Modular pistols, are they the future of pistol development or are they just a passing fad like the GyroJet and the Heckler & Koch squeeze cocking P7M8 ? The modular pistols like the Sig Sauer P320 and P250 designs certainly turned some heads when they first came onto the scene but how serious of a threat is this new technology to traditional pistols. It’s introduction and eventual roll out has sparked some whispers among the shooting community as well as among law enforcement officials. There are advantages to this type of system, but there are also drawbacks that may or may not cause it growing pains as the technology advances.
The modular systems like the P320 use a striker fired system instead of a traditional double action hammer only system, which some detractors say causes the trigger pull to feel soft or mushy. These “complaints” however haven’t stopped the P320 in particular from being adopted as the duty weapon for several law enforcement agencies like the Texas Highway Patrol, and the Oklahoma Highway Patrol. Modular systems though have a lot more to them than just being striker fired.
On the modular pistols the user can remove the entire trigger and firing mechanism as one complete and semi sealed unit. This allows the same assembly to be dropped into several different sizes of frame to meet the users needs. While this may not seem like a major issue to some people it is if you really trust your life 100% to your sidearm. In the example that Sig brought up last year, an officer could use his full size duty weapon and then drop the trigger module into in his off duty weapon that features a compact frame. This would allow the officer to have the exact same trigger pull on his weapon no matter what pistol he is carrying. The other major advantage of this type of system is that this same module can be dropped into several different calibers of pistol as well. Generally in the Sig Sauer example the 9mm trigger assembly can fit into 9mm, .357 Sig and .40 S&W pistol frames.
The above image shows a good representation of the Sig 250/320 system and how with a simple conversion kit from Sig you can change between caliber or frame sizes. One of the nice things about this system is that since the only serialized part is the trigger group module, it frees manufactures up to not have to worry about permitting and FFL tracking on the grip modules. This drop in overhead costs and paperwork helps drive the cost of a grip module down to below $40 in most cases. It should also be noted that since they are so cheap that if a person wants to stipple their own frame and either hates it or makes a mistake you are only out $40 compared to several hundred if you try that on a Glock or a S&W M&P pistol.
No one is for sure what will become of this modular style of pistol, there is a lot of traffic and chatter about it though. We have handled a few of the Sig P320 at local gun shows and gun shops and have reached out to Sig to try to test and evaluate them but haven’t heard back from them yet. One of the questions I would have liked to ask Sig is if they are intending on releasing any other offerings using this modular system. In the gun industry like most industries the highest form of flattery is copying someones work and changing it just enough to not get sued. That being said I am curious to see if at SHOT Show 2017 any of the usual major players in the firearms world are going to come out with their own twist on things.
If you are fan of the modular pistols or think they are a fad, drop us a line in the comments section below and let us know. We want to know where our readers sit on this issue, better yet if you have a Sig P250 or P320 let us know what you think of it and why you chose it. If you would like to write an article on it, I’m pretty sure we can easily work something out to make it happen.