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I thought that pi bonds were weaker than sigma bonds since the amount of overlap in a sigma bond is greater than that in a pi bond. I try to imagine the lobes of the p-orbitals overlapping in a sigma bond versus a pi bond; the head-to-head overlay > side-to-side overlay.
Sigma bonds are actually stronger than pi bonds because there is more electron interaction (head-to-head orbital overlap vs. side-by-side overlap). You may be getting confused with single vs. double bonds. Single bonds are weaker than double bonds because there are less electrons involved (2 vs. 4). Also, double bonds have a pi bond in addition to a sigma bond while single bonds only have a sigma bond. Obviously the fact that there is one more bond means that the double bond is shorter and stronger.
Pi bonds by themselves are actually weaker than sigma bonds because there is less area of overlap between p orbitals than s orbitals. Single bonds are weaker than double bonds because single bonds has only a sigma bond while double bonds have a sigma and pi bond.
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