SHOT Show 2016: Sig Sauer debuts innovative LIMA5 laser grip module
The LIMA5 is still being tweaked, but Sig plans to bring the product to market this year
When you lure a group of the industry's leading experts in electro-optics technology away from their homes to form a new team, and give them the resources and support necessary to design a new line of products from scratch, the results can be exciting. When that team is part of a larger team that runs one of the world's most successful firearm companies, with a world class training staff and facility in-house to test and advise, the results can be very exciting!
Such is the case with the new LIMA5 laser grip module from Sig Sauer Electro-Optics, one of the newest divisions in the expanding Sig Sauer family.
Those of you familiar with the Sig Sauer P250 and P320 pistols know that these unique handguns incorporate a chassis that contains the frame rails, external controls, trigger, and hammer or striker release system. This serialized component is considered the "firearm" by BATFE, and it can be easily swapped back and forth between polymer grip frames and steel barrel/slide assemblies of varying dimensions and calibers. The same chassis can serve as the basis for a subcompact pistol in 9mm, or a service size pistol in .40 S&W or .357 Sig with just a switch of frames, slides and magazines.
Sig Sauer Electro-Optics has taken advantage of that feature to create a replacement grip frame that incorporates a grip activated laser as part of the frame itself. This is not a separate laser unit that has been added to the pistol frame via rail interface or screws, but a fully integrated laser and switch that is molded into the frame from the very start, with no seams or awkward bulges to ruin the effect.
The 5 m/W lasers (both red and green options available) are concealed in the dust cover of the pistol (below the recoil spring guide rod) and powered by a CR-1/3N battery in the back strap. The battery can be changed without removing the laser, as required on other rail or grip-mounted designs. The dust cover is trim and snag free, and blends perfectly into the front of the trigger guard. It incorporates a removable cover on the bottom that is secured by screws, which provides expansion capability for a white light that Sig plans to introduce at a later date.
The switch for the laser is located on the front strap, where the middle finger rests under the trigger guard. In this position, when a firing grip on the pistol is obtained, the laser is activated. The wiring between switch and laser is a flexible circuit that is covered by an over-mold, making it not just internal, but integral to the frame. This circuit already includes the brains necessary to offer laser/light switch options for the anticipated white light unit.
Although the LIMA5 grip frame is sleek and trim, it is marginally larger than existing P250 and P320 grip frames in the dust cover area, so many existing holsters will not be compatible. That's okay, because the market should respond quickly to this exciting development and it will be worth the effort to replace your holster to gain the added benefit of this integrated laser system.
The LIMA5 is still being tweaked based on feedback derived from testing the prototypes at the Sig Sauer Academy, SHOT Show Media Day, and other venues, but Sig plans to bring this product to market this year. All you P250 and P320 pistol fans should keep an eye out for this innovative development from Sig's electro-optical dream team.