Tag Archives: Solo

SIG smashed out another home run pistol

You guys know I’ve drank the Glock Cool-aide.  I freely admit it.  But I also remain an unabashed fan of the handguns from SIG SAUER.  I just like them.  Especially when SIG is coming out with very good ideas like the new P938.

Not much bigger than the P238, the little .380 automatic… the new P938 is essentially the same thing just scaled up slightly to fire the 9mm cartridge.

One of the guns that I’ve always wanted was a Colt Pocket 9.  Colt gave the American Public the middle finger and my desire to pursue the Pocket 9 was squelched, but not totally killed in action.  This kind of reminds me of that little Colt.

Really the only guns in the SIG’s class are the Kimber Solo, the Springfield EMP and SIG’s own P290.  I’m not talking about the Kahr’s or the Walther or even the Shield… I’m talking about the Higher Class options here.  The 938 just feels like it’s a step above to me.  I think it’s a lot nicer than an EMP… again, that’s just me and I am not going to cut down on the EMP.  I know it’s a great little pistol.  I just like the 938 a lot more for reasons I can’t quantify for you.  Same reason I like “Pralines and Cream” better than “Butter Pecan”.  I can’t explain why… I love me some Butter Pecan.  It’s one of my very favorites, but given the option between the two, I’ll take the Pralines and Cream every time.  I don’t even know what the hell a Praline is.

Back to the SIG, the new 938 trumps the 290 hard.  Lower bore axis, slimmer profile… just nicer.  I know I tend to favor Single Action triggers or triggers that feel and work like Single Actions, so admittedly I am biased to the 938 over the 290.  But taking the trigger out of the equation, the 938 is dimensionally smaller, which gives it an edge in concealment without sacrificing any ability for the gun to be a good shooter.  So really the choice is between the 938 and the Solo.

The P290 just seems too chunky by comparison to the slender newcomer.

At the gun shop I work at, we are a house divided on the new SIG… Some of us prefer the SIG P938.  And by Some I mean just me.  Everyone else like the Solo better. Oh well.  The SOLO is very smooth and sleek.  But it’s too much of a good thing and I don’t feel like I can get a solid hold on it.  It doesn’t point for me either.  The 938 points very well for being so small, and I can get a good grip on it, even with my hamfists.

To me it comes down to that trigger pull.  The SIG’s trigger is a Single Action that kept getting better the more we played with it, with the SOLO is a Double Action Only affair… While the SOLO’s trigger is nice, I find the SIG’s to be superior.  Some will argue that accuracy with a Defensive Weapon such as these is a secondary concern… and they are right.  But this doesn’t mean we have to disregard accuracy altogether.  I am quite sure that in a defensive pistol accuracy remains quite important.  Making that First Round Hit through a Vital is important.  But, that’s just my opinion.

I’d love a SIG P938 and I just might have to get one, one of these days… and by one of these days I mean “as soon as possible.”

UPDATE:  Thanks for the Hat Tip, SIG.  *High Five*

Kahr vs Solo

Kimber’s new little Solo sub-compact is developing into quite the nice little carry package. While the main competitor, the Kahr sub-compacts are just not measuring up anymore.
The best selling Kahrs are the CW series guns. These have a cast slide, polymer frame, and come with just one magazine… but they are only 400 bucks. The nicer forged steel P series guns are right up there in Kimber Solo price territory, but they do come with an extra mag. They are good little guns and I am quite fond of them… but the ones people buy are the CW series and we’ve had some issues with them lately. The new ones from the factory are real notchy, sticky, and sharp. Very unpleasant guns to hold and operate. They are hard to pull the slide back and even more difficult to drop the slide again… the fit an finish look fine on the outside, but the way they work… just very poorly. These CW guns are actually hurting the Kahr brand. Had to take a return on one this week on one I sold, and that’s just not cool. A CW45. Those folks are never going to look at buying another Kahr for the rest of their lives. And I can’t blame them.  At that point you can’t try to talk them into the upper end Kahr pistol – because they look damn near the same.  They just got turned off one to spend more on another that looks the same?  Doesn’t work.
Then you pick up that Kimber solo. Whole other world. It’s like going from a Flinstones Kahr Car, sorry… to a Mercedes Benz.  Smooth action like melted chocolate.  None of the Kahrs can come close to that feeling.  They could – but they don’t.  Kahr persists in their sharp edged slide lock levers and sharp frames textures.  It’s like you reward yourself with buying a Solo, and punish yourself with a Kahr… and I have to say that I hate saying that.  Because I really do like Kahr! They are accurate, reliable, with great triggers… but they feel sharp and rough and are a hard sell.

Kahr needs to revamp their lines.  New cosmetic lines, a more agreeable texture on the grips.  The actions need to feel smooth and when someone – specifically women – try to press the slide release lever, that slide needs to drop with little effort instead of making their thumbs bleed.   Round off the sharp corners on everything.  Make it something you want to hold on to.    You do that… simple reworking of existing stuff without any reengineering… then Kahr would dominate the CCW market and we could price those at 499 instead of 399. The upper end P-series… would be redundant.    Kahr could dominate… they seriously could.

I may have been wrong. Maybe.

At SHOT Show took a look at the brand new and shiny Kimber Solo 9mm.  At for some reason that I can’t put my finger on… I disliked it.  No, let me be clear.  I hated it.  I wouldn’t have one.  Even if it was gifted to me, I’d sell to some unfortunate nitwit who would think it was nifty and then I’d go buy something I liked more and could get more use out of… like blister cream or 8 Track tapes.

And now here it is, six months later.  To be honest, it’s grown on me.  I no longer hate it.  For some reason I can’t put my finger on… I kinda like it, and I wouldn’t mind having it.  But I’d still never actually buy it.

It’s… hmm… I’m searching for the right word for it… “Nice”.  It’s a nice little gun.   And perhaps that’s its problem from the start.  You see, a universally accepted good gun like a 1911 Commander .45 is great looking gun… beautiful, in the eyes of fellows like me.   At the same time it feels just gorgeous in the hand.  It fits.   It also looks like what a Weapon should look like… it looks like it’s going to destroy something, it just hasn’t decided who yet.  It has a form that’s based on it’s function and that function is to put large bullets through bad guys.

And this is where the Kimber Solo Nine Millimeter fails.  Even in the name, just say the name a few times out loud… it even just sounds “Nice”.  Like something Julie Andrews might have in her purse… it’s just well mannered and nice.  Or like something you might spread on a piece of toast.  It’s nice… Pleasant, without being fun or too interesting.   Like having a Brunch with your Grandmother… nice…  And that’s what put me off of the Solo.  It is completely lacking in Sex and Violence.

Julie Andrews approves of the Kimber Solo.

Now, if Kimber was to scale the Solo up… to say .45… then all the sudden it would become very interesting.  Or even something slightly different, like .357 SIG.  But just a 9mm?  Sure, it works… perfectly serviceable.  Certainly better than a .380… it’s nice.   But I won’t buy Nice.  Not for the price.  The thing is retailing for about $630 and for that much salad you have a world of other options that are less “nice” with more Sex and Violence.

Can you imagine the Solo in .357 SIG?  Kind of like a young Julie Andrews playing a lead role in a remake of Bound.  Proper, but she’s a dirty dirty girl behind closed doors.

Alternatives would be perhaps a Kahr MK9, or if you can find one, a Colt Pocket 9 – which I am still wanting one day.  A Springfield EMP9 would also be pretty cool.  But the Solo 9?  It just leaves me feeling less than satisfied.

I think I just might be the first gun writer that has compared a handgun to the star of Sound of Music… Well, at least not to Captain Von Trapp.