As Naval Special Warfare transitions to the Glock 19, it is important to pay tribute to the legendary Sig Sauer P228.

As some people know, SEALs have carried the P226, but on the SWCC side of the house, operators have been carrying the P228 – a smaller and more compact version of the P226.

Sig Sauer began production of the P228 in the mid-’80s and continued to produce the pistol well into the ’90s. Since then, Sig has gone through short stints of putting the pistol back into production, but new models have not been seen since the early 2000s. The P229 has now become the “replacement” for the P228.

Naval Special Warfare (NSW) received the first Sig Sauer pistol deliveries in 1989 after a SEAL experienced a dangerous malfunction while shooting the Beretta M9. The P226/P228’s chrome-lined barrel and chamber, along with its stainless steel slide and Nitron coating, made it an ideal weapon for NSW missions.

A SEAL with the P226.

The P228, shooting a 9 mm round, was the weapon of choice for the SWCC community due to its compact size. Considering that SWCCs spend an abundant amount of time on small boats — constantly in close proximity to other operators and having to fit into tight spaces (the engine compartment, electrical console, and cockpit areas), the smaller P228 was the perfect tool for the job.

The P228 has a total length of 7.1″, a barrel length of 3.9″, and a magazine capacity of 13 rounds. In comparison, the P226 measures in at a length of 7.7″, a barrel length of 4.4″, and a magazine capacity of 15 rounds.