My first exposure to any Sig Sauer firearm came in 1980, shortly after I was married and I opened a gun shop in my home. Later, I moved to a regular store front location. A customer asked me to order him a Browning BDA .45 ACP handgun. I readily admit, that back then, I had no idea what the BDA was. I knew the Browning name but wasn’t familiar with the BDA (Browning Double Action) model. After some research, I found out that the “Browning” BDA was manufactured by Sig and imported into the USA by Browning. I was impressed with the BDA, for the most part, other than the heel mounted magazine release, which is popular in Europe though not so much here in the USA. I remember the BDA being a bit blocky to my way of thinking; however, it felt good in the hand, real good. It wasn’t until that customer went out shooting and invited me along that I fired that Browning BDA, and I fell in love with the Sig line of handguns. I’ve been a big fan ever since.
Sig Sauer now manufactures most of their firearms in the USA these days, instead of in Europe. For some reason, there was thinking back in “those” days that firearms made in Europe were better than those made in the USA. I totally disagree with that line of thought, then and now! Given a free hand, we can build just about anything better in the USA than can be built in other countries. I’m unashamedly pro-USA!
Over the years, I’ve owned many different Sig Sauer firearms– long guns as well as handguns. One thing that has always stood out is the superb accuracy of Sig firearms. I never had one that couldn’t really group, if I did my part. I’ve always liked the Sig P226 line and have owned many different variations over the years. This newest P226 that is under review here is the “Scorpion”, and I’m here to tell you that it has some well thought-out features.
The Scorpion is available in 9mm and .40S&W. My sample, as requested, is the 9mm version. The gun comes with a 4.4-inch barrel. However, there is a treaded version for suppressors that is 4.9 inches long. The overall height of the Scorpion is 5.5 inches. It is 1.5 inches wide and has an overall length of 7.7 inches. SIGLITE night sights are standard issue. The gun weighs 34 ounces with the aluminum frame and stainless steel slide. The finish on the Scorpion is Flat Dark Earth in color Cerakote. Standard magazine capacity is 15 rounds; however, I use 18-rd Mec-Gar magazines in my sample. The trigger pull is typical DA/SA– double action/single action. The first shot is fired double action, when the trigger is at rest, and the trigger pull is 10 lbs, and it’s VERY smooth. Single action trigger pull is 4.4 lbs; however, you can fire the first shot single action by simply cocking the hammer back.
Some of the features on the Scorpion, that aren’t on the standard P226, are:
- cocking serrations on the slide,
- Elite beavertail on the frame,
- integral Picatinny rail for lasers or lights,
- front strap checkering, and
- Hogue G10 Extreme Piranna grips, that I love.
The trigger is the SRT– Short Reset Trigger– that you don’t have to allow it to travel so far forward to reset after each shot. This makes for faster follow-up shots. And, as already mentioned, the special Flat Dark Earth coating on the gun that is really eye-catching also helps protect the gun from the elements. The Scorpion has the Sig decocking lever on the left side of the frame and the slide lock/release. The magazine release button is checkered and angled, too.
The gun comes with two 15-rd magazines, and spare magazines are readily found just about every place. I have a good supply of genuine Sig 15-rd mags in my supply, and as mentioned I also have some of the Mec-Gar 18-rd mags that don’t extend very much below the frame of the gun. For my money, these are the mags to use. They provide you with three more rounds with very little more length added to the gun. The Scorpion also has a massive external extractor. I don’t know if this is on all Sig 226 handguns or not, but I don’t see a shell refusing to extract from the chamber with this hummer. It is big!
For a full-sized, duty-style handgun, the Scorpion can be concealed, with the right holsters and covering garments. I carried the Scorpion for two weeks, in a Blackhawk Products www.blackhawk.com CQC thumb break holster on my right hip. The gun rode nice and tight against my body in the heat of the summer. For law enforcement or military use, I would carry the Scorpion in the Blackhawk Tactical Thigh holster, which is one of my favorite rigs. It allows the gun to ride below the waist, in the event you are carrying a long gun, and it won’t interfere with the long gun. I added two Blackhawk mag pouches to the thigh rig, with two more 18-rd Mec-Gar magazines. Once properly adjusted, this setup is fantastic. For survival, this would be a great rig and handgun in my humble opinion. I carry either +P or +P+ hollow point rounds for self-defense. Of course, no gun maker warrants their firearms for +P+ ammo, but the P226 Scorpion can handle higher pressured ammo, in my opinion. For practice, I shoot standard pressure FMJ ammo, when blasting paper targets.
I ran more than 500 rounds of various 9mm ammo through the Scorpion, and there were zero failures of any sort. The gun just kept right on perking along. I also mixed different types and brands of ammo in the magazines, and there were no failures to feed or fire. This is always a good test. Many guns, if you mix different brands and types of ammo in a magazine, will stutter and not feed the next round. The Sig sailed through this test several times.
From Black Hills Ammunition I had their 115-gr JHP +P load, 124-gr JHP +P, 115-gr Barnes TAC-XP all-copper hollow point +P load, 124-gr JHP, and their 115-gr FMJ loading. From the folks at Buffalo Bore Ammunition, I had their 147-gr JHP Subsonic load, 147-gr FMJ FN Subsonic load, 147-gr Hard Cast FN Outdoorsman load, 115-gr Barnes TAC-XP +P+ fodder, and their 124-gr +P+ FMJ FN “Penetrator” ammo. So, I had a great selection of ammo to run through the Scorpion.
I did some draw and fire exercises, using both the Blackhawk hip holster, and the tactical thigh holster. I do this from time-to-time, to stay on my game and get a feel for different holsters. The hip holster allowed me a slightly faster draw than did the tactical thigh holster. However, I’m not kidding myself, if someone has the drop on me, I’m probably gonna lose if I have to draw against a gun that is already out. However, faced with a life or death situation like that, I’d draw, because only 25% of people who are shot with handgun rounds actually die. So that means, a person has a 75% chance of living. So, go for it, I say. I put a small piece of skate board friction tape on the release button on the tactical thigh holster, and it made it much easier for my trigger finger to find the button under stress. It’s a quick and easy fix that only cost a penny or two. All of my Blackhawk Tactical Thigh holsters now have this small piece of friction tape on the holster’s button for releasing the handgun. (Even old dogs can learn new tricks.)
As I mentioned early on, Sig firearms are known for outstanding accuracy, and the Scorpion didn’t let me down, if I did my part. I tested all of the above ammo, firing over a sleeping bag, over the hood of my pick-up truck, with the paper target 25 yards down range. Again, if I did my part, the Sig and the ammo did what it was supposed to do. I only had a few groups that were over three inches, and I think those groups were my fault, not the gun and ammo. Doing my part, I got several groups down there in the 2 1/4 inch range, and I think the Scorpion can do even better. My shooting was done over the super hot summer we had in the western part of Oregon, and I don’t tolerate that kind of heat. So, I know I wasn’t at my best. I can see the Scorpion, with the right ammo, and me on my game doing a little better– shooting inch and a half groups. The overall winner was the Black Hills 124-gr JHP load, followed by the Buffalo Bore 147-gr Hard Cast +P Outdoorsman load, and tied for third place is the Black Hills 115-gr JHP +P and the Buffalo Bore 147-gr FMJ FN Subsonic loads. Honestly, there were no bad groups or bad ammo. The gun can shoot, and it shot very well with any of the ammo I put through it. On a good day, as mentioned, I can see the Scorpion with the ammo it likes best, shooting inch and a half groups, single action.
I like the extended beavertail on the frame, as it allows me to get a higher grip on the gun and it helps prevent the gun from rolling “up” during recoil, not that the 9mm round is punishing; even the +P+ loads weren’t a problem for the Scorpion in the recoil department. The SIGLITE night sights are outstanding, and I did a little bit of low-light shooting, too. They really stand out. I should mention that the front of the squared-off trigger guard is checkered, for those who place the index finger of their off-hand in this position. It used to be all the rage, however I don’t know of anyone who uses this grip any longer on a handgun.
If you’re not familiar with the decocking lever on many of the Sig handguns, this will take a little training to get used to. Muscle memory is just all it is. When you are done firing and you are ready to re-holster, you press down on the decocking lever with your thumb, and it safely drops the hammer, making the gun safe to re-holster. Don’t ever holster with the hammer cocked!!!
I liked the Hogue G10 Extreme Piranna grips so much that I got a pair for my Sig P229. These grips grip your hand back. There’s no chance of dropping the gun under any weather conditions. These grips just feel fantastic. I passed the gun around to quite a few people, and the first thing every one commented on was how great the grips felt in their hand.
The Flat Dark Earth Cerakote finish is something I really liked the look of. It’s very “tactical” to my mind, and of course it provides added protection against the elements. The slide is stainless steel and the frame is aluminum to help fight the elements, but the Cerakote just adds another layer of protection.
Sig Sauer quality never comes cheap. Full retail on the P226 Scorpion is $1,313. Then again, you ARE getting a Sig, and I don’t know that I’ve ever been disappointed in any way with any Sig Sauer handgun I’ve owned or tested. The Scorpion is no different. Is the Scorpion worth this kind of money? You betcha, it is! Save your pennies, if you have to, but this one is worth every red cent, even at full retail! If you’re looking for an “End Of The World” handgun that won’t fail you, then look no further, and if the Scorpion model isn’t to your liking, then check out one of the many different P226 models that Sig offers. I’m sure you’ll find one that suits your taste perfectly. The only “problem” I have now is that this sample isn’t going back to Sig; so, I’ll have to save my own pennies now and buy it.