.357 SIG

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.357 SIG
357 SIG - FMJ - SB - 1.jpg
.357 SIG jacketed flat point cartridge
Type Pistol
Place of origin Switzerland
United States
Production history
Designer SIGARMS / Federal Cartridge Co.
Designed 1994
Produced 1994–present
Parent case 10mm Auto
Case type Rimless, bottleneck
Bullet diameter 9.02 mm (0.355 in)
Neck diameter 9.68 mm (0.381 in)
Shoulder diameter 10.77 mm (0.424 in)
Base diameter 10.77 mm (0.424 in)
Rim diameter 10.77 mm (0.424 in)
Rim thickness 1.40 mm (0.055 in)
Case length 21.97 mm (0.865 in)
Overall length 28.96 mm (1.140 in)
Case capacity 1.27 cm3 (19.6 gr H2O)
Rifling twist 406 mm (1 in 16 in)
Primer type Small pistol
Maximum pressure (C.I.P.) 305.0 MPa (44,240 psi)
Maximum pressure (SAAMI) 275.8 MPa (40,000 psi)
Ballistic performance
Bullet mass/type Velocity Energy
8.1 g (125 gr) Federal FMJ 1,350 ft/s (410 m/s) 506 ft⋅lbf (686 J)
8.1 g (125 gr) Doubletap FMJ-FP 1,450 ft/s (440 m/s) 583 ft⋅lbf (790 J)
5.83 g (90 gr) Grizzly JHP 1,900 ft/s (580 m/s) 721 ft⋅lbf (978 J)
8.1 g (125 gr) Underwood TMJ 1,475 ft/s (450 m/s) 604 ft⋅lbf (819 J)
6.48 g (100 gr) Cor-bon PB 1,600 ft/s (490 m/s) 568 ft⋅lbf (770 J)
Source(s): 4.5" barrel for DoubleTap Ammunition, NO BARREL LENGTH GIVEN BY Grizzly Cartridge and Underwood Ammo m and 4.0" barrel for Corbon PB. See also C.I.P.[1]

The .357 SIG pistol cartridge (designated as the 357 Sig by the SAAMI[2] and 357 SIG by the C.I.P.[1] or 9×22mm in unofficial metric notation) is the product of Swiss-German firearms manufacturer SIG Sauer, in cooperation with ammunition manufacturer Federal Cartridge. The cartridge is used by a number of law enforcement agencies and has a good reputation for accuracy.[3]


Developed in 1994, the new cartridge was named "357" to highlight its purpose: to duplicate the performance of 125-grain (8.1 g) .357 Magnum loads fired from 4-inch (100 mm)-barreled revolvers, in a cartridge designed to be used in a semi-automatic pistol with greater ammunition capacity than a revolver. Performance is similar to the 9×23mm Winchester.

Other than specialized competition cartridges like the 9×25mm Dillon (1988), which necked a 10mm Auto case down to a 9 mm bullet, the .357 SIG (1994) was the first modern bottleneck commercial handgun cartridge since the early 1960s, when Winchester introduced a .257 caliber round based on the .357 Magnum, the now obsolete .256 Winchester Magnum (1960). Then Remington introduced the unsuccessful .22 Remington Jet (1961), which necked a .357 Magnum case down to a .22 caliber bullet, and the .221 Remington Fireball (1963), a shortened version of their .222 Remington. Soon after the .357 SIG, other bottleneck commercial handgun cartridges appeared: the .400 Corbon (1996), necking the .45 ACP down to .40 caliber; the .440 Corbon (1998), necking down the .50 AE to .44 caliber; the .32 NAA (2002), necking the .380 ACP down to .32 caliber; and the .25 NAA (2004), necking the .32 ACP down to .25 caliber.

Due to its expense, as .357 SIG practice ammo is about twice the cost of 9mm and around 50% more than .40 S&W, .357 SIG never achieved widespread adoption like .40 S&W.[4][5][6]

Cartridge dimensions

The .357 SIG has 1.27 ml (19.5 grains H2O) cartridge case capacity.

357 SIG.svg

.357 SIG maximum C.I.P. cartridge dimensions.[1] All sizes in millimeters.

Americans would define the shoulder angle at alpha/2=18 degrees. The common rifling twist rate for this cartridge is 406 mm (1 in 16 in), 6 grooves, Ø lands=8.71 mm, Ø grooves=9.02 mm, land width=2.69 mm and the primer type is small pistol.

Several sources have published contradicting information regarding .357 SIG headspacing.[7] This is due to the cartridge having been originally designed as a .357 (9.02mm) round, but then rapidly adapted to the .355 (9mm) bullet. According to the official C.I.P. (Commission Internationale Permanente Pour L'Epreuve Des Armes A Feu Portatives) 2008 revised documents, the .357 SIG headspaces on the case mouth (H2).[8] Some US sources are in conflict with this standard.[9] However, the cartridge and chamber drawing in the ANSI/SAAMI American National Standards also clearly shows the cartridge headspacing on the cartridge mouth.[10] Likewise, US reloading supplier Lyman has published that the .357 SIG headspaces on the case mouth.

According to the C.I.P. rulings the .357 SIG case can handle up to 305 MPa (44,236 psi) piezo pressure. In C.I.P. regulated countries every pistol cartridge combo has to be proofed at 130% of this maximum C.I.P. pressure to certify for sale to consumers.
The SAAMI pressure limit for the .357 SIG is set at 275.80 MPa (40,000 psi), piezo pressure.[11]


Left to right: .357 SIG, 10mm Auto, .40 S&W

While it is based on a .40 S&W case necked down to accept 0.355-inch (9.0 mm) bullets, the .357 SIG cartridge case is slightly longer than .40 S&W by 0.009 in (0.23 mm) to 0.020 in (0.51 mm) total. Most .40 S&W pistols can be converted to .357 SIG by replacing the barrel, but sometimes the recoil spring must also be changed. Pistols with especially strong recoil springs can accept either cartridge with a barrel change. Magazines will freely interchange between the two cartridges in most pistols. .357 SIG barrel kits have allowed this cartridge to gain in popularity among handgun owners. However, the .357 SIG is loaded to higher pressures than the .40 S&W (the C.I.P. and the SAAMI pressure limits for .40 S&W are 225 MPa and 35,000 psi), and may not be suitable for use in all .40 S&W-chambered pistols due to the increase in bolt thrust.


The table below shows common performance parameters for several .357 SIG loads. Bullet weights ranging from 115 to 150 grains (7.5 to 9.7 g) have been offered. Loads are available with energies from 488 foot-pounds force (662 J) to 583 foot-pounds force (790 J), and penetration depths from 9 inches (230 mm) to over 16.5 inches (420 mm) are available for various applications and risk assessments.

Manufacturer Load Mass Velocity Energy Expansion[12] Penetration[12] PC[12] TSC[12]
Triton Quik-Shok 115 gr (7.5 g) 1,425 ft/s (434.3 m/s) 518 ft⋅lbf (702.3 J) frag 9.0 in (228.6 mm) 4.1 cu in (67.2 cm3) 43.2 cu in (707.9 cm3) (est)
Winchester Ranger T 125 gr (8.1 g) 1,385 ft/s (422.1 m/s) 532 ft⋅lbf (721.3 J) 0.75 in (19.1 mm) 11.5 in (292.1 mm) 5.1 cu in (83.6 cm3) 45.0 cu in (737.4 cm3) (est)
Federal Premium JHP 125 gr (8.1 g) 1,430 ft/s (435.9 m/s) 568 ft⋅lbf (770.1 J) 0.62 in (15.7 mm) 12.7 in (322.6 mm) 3.8 cu in (62.3 cm3) 49.5 cu in (811.2 cm3) (est)
Speer Gold Dot JHP 125 gr (8.1 g) 1,385 ft/s (422.1 m/s) 532 ft⋅lbf (721.3 J) 0.68 in (17.3 mm) 16.5 in (419.1 mm) 6.0 cu in (98.3 cm3) 45.0 cu in (737.4 cm3) (est)
Remington JHP 125 gr (8.1 g) 1,350 ft/s (411.5 m/s) 506 ft⋅lbf (686.0 J) 0.57 in (14.5 mm) 14.3 in (363.2 mm) 3.6 cu in (59.0 cm3) 41.7 cu in (683.3 cm3) (est)
Federal Premium JHP 150 gr (9.7 g) 1,210 ft/s (368.8 m/s) 488 ft⋅lbf (661.6 J) 0.60 in (15.2 mm) 15.0 in (381.0 mm) 4.2 cu in (68.8 cm3) 39.4 cu in (645.7 cm3) (est)
Underwood Gold Dot JHP 125 gr (8.1 g) 1,450 ft/s (442.0 m/s) 583 ft⋅lbf (790.4 J) 0.75 in (19.1 mm) 16.5 in (419.1 mm) 6.0 cu in (98.3 cm3) 45.0 cu in (737.4 cm3) (est)

Expansion – expanded bullet diameter (ballistic gelatin).
Penetration – penetration depth (ballistic gelatin).
PC – permanent cavity volume (ballistic gelatin, FBI method).
TSC – temporary stretch cavity volume (ballistic gelatin).

Because of its relatively high velocity[13] for a handgun round, the .357 SIG has an unusually flat trajectory, extending the effective range. However, it does not quite reach the performance of the .357 Magnum with bullets heavier than 125 grains (8.1 g). Offsetting this general slight disadvantage in performance is that semi-automatic pistols tend to carry considerably more ammunition than revolvers.

The Virginia State Police has reported that attacking dogs have been stopped dead in their tracks by a single shot, whereas the former 147 grain 9 mm duty rounds would require multiple shots to incapacitate the animals.[14] Proponents of the hydrostatic shock theory contend that the energy available in the .357 SIG is sufficient for imparting hydrostatic shock with well-designed bullets.[15][16][17] Users have commented, "We're really impressed with the stopping power of the .357 SIG round."[3]

The bottleneck shape of the .357 SIG cartridge makes feeding problems almost non-existent.[18] This is because the bullet is channeled through the larger chamber before being seated entirely as the slide goes into full battery. Flat point bullets are seldom used with other autoloader firearms because of feeding problems; however, such bullets are commonly seen in the .357 SIG chambering and are quite reliable, as are hollow-point bullets.

The "Accurate Powder" reloading manual claims that it is "without a doubt the most ballistically consistent handgun cartridge we have ever worked with."[11]


From left to right: 9mm, 7.62×25mm Tokarev, .357 SIG, 10mm Auto, .40 S&W, .45 GAP, .50 AE.

The goal of the .357 SIG project was to offer a level of performance equal to the highly effective 125-grain (8.1 g) .357 Magnum load.[19][20] Measurements of standard factory .357 SIG cartridges loaded with 125-grain (8.1 g) bullets showed approximate muzzle velocities of 1,450 feet per second (440 m/s) out of a 4 inches (102 mm) barrel, which is essentially identical to the .357 Magnum with the same bullet weight and barrel length.[21][22] These measurements were performed with a Thompson Center Encore 1842 break-action, single-shot pistol/rifle, preventing differing barrel length definitions between semi-automatic pistols and revolvers giving revolvers a potential muzzle velocity advantage.[23]

With a simplistic approach to physics, recoil being directly proportional to "muzzle velocity × bullet mass" (due to conservation of momentum), the recoil of the .357 SIG is equal to or slightly less than that of the .40 S&W, and less than that of the full-power 10mm Auto loads or the original .357 Magnum,[24][full citation needed] (see Handgun Recoil table as well as Street Stoppers[25]). This simple approach to recoil is incomplete since the properties of the bullet alone do not determine the felt recoil, but also the rocket-like blast of propellant gases coming out of the barrel after the bullet leaves the muzzle.[26] A more accurate view on recoil is that it is proportional to the mass of all ejecta × velocity of ejecta.[27] Even so, recoil calculated in this manner is only the starting point in a comparison with the .357 Magnum cartridge, since the latter is used in a revolver, in which the recoil energy is due to the bullet and propellant less ejecta escaping through the cylinder gap, while the .357 SIG cartridge is used in a semi-automatic pistol with recoil operation; here, a significant portion of the recoil energy is diverted to cycle the action, effectively prolonging the recoil-phase pulse. Of course, other considerations affect the user's perceived recoil, such as the weight of the weapon, front to back balance, moving mass, height difference between the shooter's grip parallel to the barrel, and grip.

In comparing the energy levels of premium self-defense ammunition, the muzzle energy of 584 ft⋅lbf (792 J) of the 125 grains (8.1 g) 1,450 feet per second (440 m/s) .357 SIG load is greater than either the 475 ft⋅lbf (644 J) generated by a 155 grains (10.0 g) 1,175 feet per second (358 m/s) Speer GoldDot .40 S&W load or the 400 ft⋅lbf (540 J) generated by a 180 grains (12 g) 985 feet per second (300 m/s) Speer GoldDot .40 S&W load.[28]

Like the 10mm Auto, the .357 SIG can be down-loaded to reduce recoil to the point where recoil is similar to that of a 9×19mm Parabellum. However, since the .357 SIG uses bullets that are generally the same as those used in the 9 mm Para,[29][full citation needed] downloading it to this point would defeat the purpose of fielding the SIG cartridge, as the .357 SIG casing was designed to handle up to 160 gr bullets whereas the less-powerful 9mm maxes out at 147 gr bullet weight in subsonic loads.

Because the .357 SIG fires at relatively high pressures, muzzle flash and report can be significant with standard loads, even with longer barrels. Many police departments who have utilized the .357 SIG round found that the flash was so significant that night vision was affected. Utilizing loads with specialized powders and various bullet weights might reduce flash.


Oblique view of a .357 SIG FMJ cartridge.

In 1994, Sig released the P229 pistol, the first production handgun introduced that was chambered in .357 SIG and specifically designed to handle the higher pressures of that round.[30]

From 1991 to 1998, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) issued either the SIG Sauer P220 in .45 ACP or the SIG Sauer P226 in 9mm Parabellum at the Trooper's discretion.[citation needed] In 1998, the Texas DPS transitioned to the all-steel, full-sized (34.0 oz) SIG Sauer P226 chambered in the .357 SIG cartridge as the sole choice of pistol for commissioned officers.[citation needed] In doing so, the Texas DPS became the first government agency to deploy a firearm utilizing the then relatively new .357 SIG chambering.[citation needed]

However, in 2013 the Texas DPS decided to replace their .357 SIG handguns with 9mm handguns.[31] The ability to carry more rounds per magazine (9mm vs. .357 SIG) in a lighter gun were among the stated reasons for the change.[32] That transition was suspended after recruits in the A-2014 class, the first to train with the new S&W M&P 9mm polymer handguns, experienced numerous malfunctions with those weapons.[33]

The newer SIG Sauer P229 in .357 SIG has been adopted for use by agents and officers of the following national and state law enforcement organizations (LEO):

The Tennessee Highway Patrol currently[when?] issues the Glock 31 pistol chambered in .357 SIG.[citation needed] The Mississippi Highway Patrol issues the Glock 31 Gen4 in .357 SIG.[37] The Bedford Heights Police Department in Ohio has issued the gen3 Glock 31/32/33 since 2008 and are currently testing gen4 Glock 31s. The Eutawville Police Department in South Carolina issues the Glock 31 in .357 SIG.[citation needed] The Elloree Police Department in South Carolina also issues the Glock 31 in .357 SIG, and the Madison Police Department in Madison, WV issues the Glock 32 in .357 SIG.[citation needed] The Gouverneur Police Department in New York issues the Glock 32.[citation needed] The Oklahoma Highway Patrol and Rhode Island State Police issue the SIG Sauer P226 in .357 SIG.[citation needed] The Paramus Police Department in New Jersey also issues the SIG P229 in .357 SIG.[citation needed] The West Grove Borough Police Department, West Grove PA, also carry the SIG Sauer P229 in the .357 SIG caliber.[citation needed]

Both the New Mexico State Police[38][failed verification] and the North Carolina State Highway Patrol use SIG Sauer P229s chambered in .357 SIG.[citation needed] The Herculaneum (Missouri) Police Department uses the P229 and P226 in .357 SIG.[citation needed] The Coral Springs Police Department in Florida uses the Sig P226 and P229 Enhanced Elite pistols chambered in .357 SIG.[39][failed verification] The Orlando Police Department uses the SIG Sauer P229 in .357 SIG.[40][better source needed] In July 2014 it was announced that the North Carolina State Highway Patrol will equip its 1,600 officers with the SIG Sauer P226 in .357 SIG.[41]

Ottawa, Kansas Police Department carried the Glock 31 .357 SIG, but has since moved to the Glock 17 GEN 4 9mm.[42][43]

Chanute, Kansas Police Department issued the SIG Sauer P229 chambered in the caliber.

In 2003 the Pennsylvania Game Commission began issuing its Game Wardens Glock 31 gen3 pistols chambered in .357 SIG, but in late 2019 will be transitioning to Glock 31 gen4 chambered in the same caliber.

See also


  1. ^ a b c "C.I.P. TDCC datasheet 357 SIG" (PDF). cip-bobp.org. Archived (PDF) from the original on 4 August 2016. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  2. ^ "SAAMI 357 Sig cartridge and chamber drawings" (PDF). saami.org. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2014-07-14. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  3. ^ a b c d e f The Gun Digest Book of Sig-Sauer: a complete look at Sig-Sauer pistols. Massad Ayoob. 2004. pp. 51–53.
  4. ^ https://jm4tactical.com/blog/ammo-showdown-357-sig-vs-40sw/
  5. ^ https://www.luckygunner.com/lounge/357-sig-whats-the-point/
  6. ^ https://www.luckygunner.com/lounge/happened-357-sig/
  7. ^ 357 SIG handload reliability...controlling headspace By Joseph D'Alessandro Editor RealGuns.Com
  8. ^ "Tables of Dimensions of Cartridges and Chambers - Tab IV - Pistol and revolver cartridges" (PDF). cip-bobp.org. C.I.P. 2008-09-23. p. Note 6. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2016-02-11.
  9. ^ The return of the giant .357 Headspace Part I By Joseph D'Alessandro Editor RealGuns.Com
  10. ^ American National Standard Voluntary Industry Performance Standards for Pressure and Velocity of Centerfire Pistol and Revolver Ammunition for the Use of Commercial Manufacturers (PDF). New York, NY: American National Standards Institute. p. 45. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2013-10-16. Retrieved 2016-02-11.
  11. ^ a b ".357 SIG" (PDF). Accurate Powder. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-03-27. Retrieved 2009-06-09.
  12. ^ a b c d Marshall and Sanow, Stopping Power, Paladin 2001, p. 75.
  13. ^ "BBTI - Ballistics by the Inch :: .357 Sig Results". ballisticsbytheinch.com. Archived from the original on 14 October 2017. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  14. ^ Ayoob, Massad. (2002). The Gun Digest Book of Combat Handgunnery, 5th edition: Krause Publications. ISBN 0-87349-485-7
  15. ^ Michael Courtney; Amy Courtney (2008). "Scientific Evidence for Hydrostatic Shock". arXiv:0803.3051 [physics.med-ph].
  16. ^ Sturtevant B, Shock Wave Effects in Biomechanics, Sadhana, 23: 579–596, 1998.
  17. ^ Courtney A, Courtney M: Links between traumatic brain injury and ballistic pressure waves originating in the thoracic cavity and extremities. Brain Injury 21(7): 657–662, 2007.
  18. ^ Gun Digest Buyer's Guide to Concealed-Carry Handguns By Jerry Ahern. 2010. p. 35.
  19. ^ recorded results in Street Stoppers pg 173 .357 Magnum and Handgun Stopping Power by Marshall & Sanow
  20. ^ Michael Courtney; Amy Courtney (2007). "Relative incapacitation contributions of pressure wave and wound channel in the Marshall and Sanow data set". arXiv:physics/0701266.
  21. ^ Ballistics By The Inch .357 Sig results
  22. ^ Ballistics By The Inch .357 Magnum results
  23. ^ Ballistics By The Inch Scope of the Project
  24. ^ Lyman Reloading Handbook, 43rd Edition
  25. ^ Marshall, Evan; Sanow, Edwin (May 1, 1996). Street Stoppers: The Latest Handgun Stopping Power Street Results. Paladin Press. p. 142. ISBN 0873648722.
  26. ^ "38super.net Is For Sale". 38super.net. Archived from the original on 5 March 2012. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  27. ^ "Auto-loader vs Revolver recoil..." thehighroad.org. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  28. ^ "MidwayUSA - Shop Shooting, Hunting, & Outdoor Products". MidwayUSA. Archived from the original on 22 April 2018. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  29. ^ Lyman Reloading Handbook, 48th edition, 2002, Lyman Products Corp.
  30. ^ Wiley Clapp (2011-03-09). ".357 Sig|Shooting Illustrated". Shooting Illustrated. Archived from the original on 2013-11-02. Retrieved 2012-05-14.
  31. ^ Cannon, Dan (13 April 2014). "Texas Highway Patrol Dropping SIG Pistols in .357 SIG for S&W Pistols in 9mm". gunssavelives.net. Archived from the original on 23 August 2017. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  32. ^ "Texas DPS Ditches S&W M&P Handguns Over Reliability Issues - The Truth About Guns". thetruthaboutguns.com. 11 April 2014. Archived from the original on 11 July 2017. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  33. ^ Tribune, Terri Langford, The Texas (17 April 2014). "DPS Suspends Use of New Handgun Over "Concerns"". myhighplains.com. Archived from the original on 25 July 2015. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  34. ^ "A Stability Police Force for the United States: Justification and Options for Creating U.S. Capabilities" (PDF). RAND Research Corporation. 2009. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2010-02-15. Retrieved 2010-04-05.
  35. ^ "Sig Sauer P229: The handgun that protects the President—and you!". Archived from the original on 2014-08-10.
  36. ^ "Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum - Texas Rangers Today - Standard Issue Equipment". 2009. Archived from the original on 2012-06-03. Retrieved 29 May 2012.
  37. ^ "New Glock 31, .357 Testing & Evaluation". flicker. Archived from the original on September 28, 2011.
  38. ^ Smith & Wesson advertisement in Sept. 2010 issue of Tactical Weapons magazine.
  39. ^ S. Mitchell Coral Springs Police Training Unit Oct 2013
  40. ^ "Google Sites". sites.google.com. Archived from the original on 11 October 2016. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  41. ^ "North Carolina State Highway Patrol Buy SIG SAUER P226 in .357SIG - The Truth About Guns". thetruthaboutguns.com. 20 July 2014. Archived from the original on 20 June 2017. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  42. ^ "Police Officer Hiring Packet" (PDF). Ottawa Police Department. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2017-02-08. Retrieved 2017-02-23.
  43. ^ "Police Officer (Ottawa, KS)". kansassheriffs.org. Archived from the original on 13 September 2017. Retrieved 24 April 2018.

External links

  • Ballistics By The Inch .357Sig results
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