Sad saga of the SIG Trailside...

Discussion in '.22-Rimfire Forum' started by B27, Sep 26, 2012.

  1. B27

    B27 New Member

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    ...which was of course actually built by Hammerli.
    It was marketed in europe as the Exess...or......sumpin like that.

    In any case it was an example of a company which excelled in building fine comp bullseye target pistols trying to build a sporting pistol and not realizing just how badly the average American shooter can abuse a .22 pistol just in going about his daily rounds of minor mayhem. ;)

    Anyhoo, both of mine still work
    BUTT....this is because one was sent back to SIG for a rebuild after only 500 rounds and the other has been babied like the baby sister I don't got.

    Anybody else but me around here with Tsides that actually still work? :D

    [​IMG]
  2. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

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    The "failures of Sig Trailsides" is grossly over exaggerated. I have had mine since they were first released. Initially some had problem with the trigger guard breaking. The word was that the trigger guard was cast aluminum and totally inadequate. Several people who report here had extensive mods they claimed fixed the problem. To be sure mine did not fail I investigated.

    What I found was the trigger guard was probably cast but of steel (magnets don't lie). The problem was that a vertical protrusion on the trigger guard was the stop for the slide in recoil. The manufacturing process for the trigger guard left a small flashing or seam on the front of the guard that kept it from seating in the rear against the frame which was the support for the guard's recoil stop. The flashing could hold the guard off the frame just enough that the recoil over time could break off the recoil protrusion on the guard. The fix was literally a few passes of a file on the flashing until the guard firmly seated against the frame and all was good.

    The gun is good as a less expensive almost clone of the Hammerli 208 (I think that is the model?). It is not an exact clone but close. It is too light for me so I added a red dot. I could not get the longer barrel version I wanted and had to settle for the short barrel. It uses plastic mags but I have not had any trouble with them. The gun is accurate with target ammo like CCI Standard Velocity. I have not had any feeding or extraction/ejection problem nor have I heard of any.

    The current production Hammerli Xesse is the Trailside with a few modifications (??):

    http://www.larrysguns.com/Products/...rd-22lr__Hammerli-spc-Xesse-spc-Standard.aspx

    The trigger of the Trailside is adjustable (not covered in the original instruction manual) and can be adjusted to be an excellent European two stage trigger.

    The Sig Trailside is under rated, suffered an undue bad reputation, and actually is a good target gun. There is no reason to baby it if you fix the trigger guard so that the frame at the rear of the trigger guard limits the travel of of the guard back into the gun instead of the flashing on the horizontal surface in the front of the guard. Once that is done the guard is fully supported in recoil and will NOT break as it is just a supported spacer.



    LDBennett
    Last edited: Sep 27, 2012
  3. B27

    B27 New Member

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    LDB-
    Actually I had no problem related to trigger guard issues. :)

    My early gun, the one with the red and black grips, did what so many of them did and destroyed it's own slide stop lever in less than 500 rounds.

    I'm going to have to respectfully disagree with you about this gun being a problem child.
    The changes in design during it's short life on the US market reflect this IMHO.

    Extractor changes-

    Early-

    [​IMG]

    Late-

    [​IMG]

    Three different design magazines-small mag catch hole solid feed lips, small mag catch hole split feed lips and large mag catch hole split feed lips.

    [​IMG]

    And i am told by people I respect that there is yet a fourth mag type out there.
    Please do not get me wrong...I enjoy the pistols and my competion model is incredibly accurate.
    i just don't believe they are durable and up to years of heavy use like a S&W M41 or Ruger MkII. :)
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2012
  4. LDBennett

    LDBennett Well-Known Member

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    B27:

    OK, so the gun evolved. Is that not better than a manufacturer releasing a new gun with a few naggy problems and then not ever fixing them? Mine is an original and I have had zero issues with it. But I don't use it every week (more like a few times a years as my many other guns need to be used too).

    I agree the Ruger MK series all metal guns are brutes and have had to evolve little. The S&W Model 41 is a gun of finesse, and not necessarily an equivalent brute. Hi Std's are magically accurate but finicky about feeding ammo unless the magazine lips are adjusted just so. Colt's Woodsman based Match target went through three generations of guns with some recoil spring change as factory mods along the way. My S&W superb Model 52 38 Special wadcutter target pistol didn't go but a year or so after initial release inthe 1960's before it had to have its extractor design changed. So evolution happens as it did with the SIG Trailside. That does not make it a "bad" gun. Few guns that survive for very long go totally unchanged throughout there life on the market placed.

    I would add that the Trailside's successor, the Xesses, has an excellent reputation. Yes, it has slight changes from the original Trailside but it is still around and highly thought of by owners. I would recommend a used SIG Trailside or a new Xesses to a friend. But there is also a long list of other guns I would recommend as well. It is all about what tickles your fancy.

    LDBennett
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