Sig Sauer MK25 & M11 9mm Semi-Automatic Service Pistols

by Jeff Quinn

photography by Jeff Quinn & Boge Quinn

December 3rd, 2012


Click pictures for a larger version.








ECS-Cobra holster and mag pouch.

Ever since I first laid hands upon the Browning BDA 45 back in 1977, I have always liked the Sig semi-automatic pistols. The BDA was a Sig P220 re-branded for importation by Browning, and was like nothing else on the market at that time. I was in Uncle Lee’s Sporting Goods in Paris, Tennessee, lusting over things which I could not afford to buy beneath the glass in the handgun display cases, when I spotted the three new BDA pistols; one chambered for the 9x19mm, another in 38 Super, and the third in 45 ACP. The fellow behind the counter placed the 45 into my hands, and I knew that someday, I would have to have one, but being only eighteen years old and sacking groceries after school for $1.20 per hour, that BDA was far out of reach financially for me at the time, and all of my shooting money was spent for lead, primers, and powder to feed my Ruger 357 Magnum. I read every word that I could glean from magazines about the new pistol, but it would be many years before I fired my first Sig. By then, Browning had stopped importing the Sig, and the pistols were labeled as Sigs, but the pistol had the same great feel in my hands. The P220 had the double-action/single-action (DA/SA) trigger, but later variants have been offered with DA only or SA only triggers. The early 220 pistols had a European style magazine release, located at the heel of the grip, but they now have been repositioned to the location preferred by most, at the rear of the trigger guard on the left side of the frame.

Sig’s first successful entry into the modern double-stack magazine high-capacity 9mm pistol market was the P226, which is still in production, and is the basis for the two pistols shown here. M11 is the US Military designation for a slightly-modified Sig P228, and the MK25 is a slightly-modified P226.

Critical specifications for the Sig pistols are listed in the chart below. Weights are listed in ounces. Linear dimensions are listed in inches. Trigger pull is listed in pounds of resistance, as measured with my Lyman digital trigger pull scale. DA is the double-action trigger pull. SA is the single-action trigger pull. Height includes sights and magazine bases. Maximum width is measured across the top of the frame, and includes the slide lock.

  MK25 M11
Chambering 9x19mm 9x19mm
Weight with Empty Magazine 32.4 oz. 29.5 oz.
Trigger Pull DA 7.8 lbs. 8.3 lbs.
Trigger Pull SA 4.2 lbs. 3.8 lbs.
Magazine Disconnect Safety No No
Loaded-Chamber Indicator No No
Barrel Length 4.4" 3.84"
Barrel Diameter 0.528" 0.528"
Overall Height 5.55" 5.41"
Overall Length 7.75" 7.1"
Grip Thickness 1.34" 1.29"
Frame Width 1.06" 1.06"
Slide Width 1.11" 1.11"
Maximum Width 1.45" 1.45"
Trigger Reach 2.9" 2.78"
Sights 3-Dot Tritium 3-Dot Tritium
Magazine Capacity 15 15
Magazines Supplied 2 3
Accessory Rail Yes, 1913 Picatinny No

I fired a variety of ammunition through the two Sig 9mm pistols over the chronograph to check velocities, with the results listed in the chart below. Velocities are listed in feet-per-second. Bullet weights are listed in grains. JHP is a jacketed hollowpoint bullet. DPX, Buffalo Bore Lead Free, and Double Tap Tac-XP are hollow nose homogenous copper bullets that are made by Barnes Bullets. Guard Dog is a FMJ with a soft plastic core to promote rapid expansion. FP is a frangible, pre-fragmented flatnose bullet. FMJ is a full metal jacket roundnose bullet. PB is Pow’RBall, a specialty bullet from Cor-Bon. Glaser is a pre-fragmented bullet. Velocities were taken at an elevation of 541 feet above sea level, with an air temperature of forty-two degrees Fahrenheit. Velocities were recorded at ten feet from the muzzle.

Ammunition Bullet Weight Velocity MK25 Velocity M11
Buffalo Bore Lead Free +P HP 95 1486 1455
Buffalo Bore Lead Free +P HP 115 1273 1259
Federal Guard Dog 105 1192 1151
Double Tap +P Tac-HP 115 1170 1173
Double Tap +P FMJ 147 1084 1055
Atomic +P HP 124 1228 1204
WCC NATO FMJ 124 1090 1076
Fiocchi FMJ 115 1106 1096
Buffalo Bore +P JHP 124 1297 1263
Buffalo Bore +P JHP 115 1313 1290
Buffalo Bore +P JHP 115 1427 1401
Buffalo Bore +P JHP 147 1111 1090
Cor-Bon Glaser 80 1601 1592
Cor-Bon +P JHP 115 1346 1320
Cor-Bon Pow’RBall 100 1322 1300
Cor-Bon +P DPX 115 1231 1212
Cor-Bon +P JHP 125 1291 1280
Stryker FMJ 115 913 902

Sig pistols have several built-in safety features that make them suitable for carry. The hammer is blocked from contacting the firing pin if dropped. It is a rebounding design, and is blocked from moving forward unless the trigger is held to the rear. Also, the firing pin block prevents the firing pin from moving forward unless the trigger is held to the rear. To safely decock a cocked hammer, the decocking lever lowers the hammer without the user having to touch the trigger. The slide locks open on an empty magazine, and the slide lock lever is located at the left rear of the frame.

For carrying the Sig pistols, I used a holster from a manufacturer that is new to me, but this won’t be the last time that I use the excellent holsters from Extreme Concealment Systems. Shown here is their Kydex ECS Cobra holster and matching magazine carrier. Both the holster and carrier are very well-fitted, and both are also adjustable for height and cant, by moving the belt loops up or down in the holes provided. The holster is thin, stiff, and conceals very well. One of the great advantages of Kydex is that while thin, it retains its shape with the gun removed, greatly aiding in ease of re-holstering the weapon. The ECS Cobra holster covers the trigger guard, and the back of the holster is raised, to protect both the weapon and the clothing from wear. All Extreme Concealment holster have a one hundred percent satisfaction guarantee, and a lifetime warranty. One thing that I really like about the ECS Cobra is that it conceals much better than most other Kydex holsters on the market. The ECS Cobra is designed, formed, and fitted with concealment in mind, and if desired, can be quickly adapted to inside the pants carry by swapping out the belt loops for j-hooks. Unlike most Kydex holsters on the market, which are black or maybe olive green, Extreme Concealment offers their holsters in a variety of colors and patterns, from pink to camouflage, to suit any preference.

Back to the two Sig pistols, both proved to be reliable and accurate. Using the variety of ammunition listed above, only one malfunction of any kind occurred during testing. Every cartridge fed, fired, and ejected perfectly, except for one cartridge that evidently had a bad primer. It did fire on the second pull of the trigger, as the Sig design has multiple strike capability. I tested the two Sig pistols for accuracy using a Ransom Master Series machine rest, at a distance of twenty-five yards. I could discern no difference in the accuracy of the two pistols, with five-shot groups averaging between one and one-half to three inches, depending upon the ammunition used. I also fired the two pistols at steel targets from twenty-five to one hundred yards. The sights work very well for quickly acquiring a sight picture, and both pistols wear the SigLite tritium night sights. Also, to further aid in low-light shooting, I installed a Lasermax Guide Rod laser into the MK25. It is very easy to install, and can be activated with the trigger finger of either a left-handed or right-handed shooter.

These two Sig pistols are built to fill military contracts, so both have phosphate-coated internal parts. The rail on the MK25 is 1913 Picatinny compliant. The pistols also wear the old-style two-piece grips, and bear US Department Of Defense labels.

Check out the M11 and MK25 pistols online at

To order quality 9mm ammunition, go to,,, and

To order the holster and mag pouch shown here, go to

To order the Lasermax Guide Rod laser, go to

Jeff Quinn

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Click pictures for a larger version.








MK25 (top), M11 (bottom).



M11 (top), MK25 (bottom).



Top to bottom: magazine release, decocker, slide lock lever, disassembly lever.



LaserMax guide rod laser.