S&W M&P Fullsize 9mm Range Report


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mattf7184
November 8, 2006, 05:35 PM
Smith and Wesson M&P Fullsize 9mm Review
SN: MPJ (left factory around 10/26)
November 8, 2006
All photos taken on my LG 8300 Camera Phone (sorry for poor quality)

Well, on the recommendations of those on various forums, I purchased an M&P Full Size 9mm without magazine disconnect or internal lock. For $369 from Bud’s Gun Shop, how could I go wrong?


Box and Package
First thought when I saw the box was how big it was. The box is a standard two clasp big plastic box with foam inside. A nice touch was the foam was cut out for the gun, magazines, and different backstraps.


Aesthetics
The gun isn’t the prettiest gun, but I find it more attractive than a Glock. The fishscale slide serrations are nice and have more grip than straight cut serrations. I like the contoured nose of the slide which makes holstering smoother.


Feel and Ergonomics
If you thought 1911s feel awesome in the hand, you have to try an M&P. The interchangeable backstraps are very well thought out. The gun has the medium on it when you take it out of the box. The small backstrap is very small with the large filling out my hand very nicely. The frontstrap is curved (not squareish like a Glock) so it does not have a 2x4 feel to it. Bravo to S&W to realizing people’s hands are different sizes. This gun allows mass adoption by large organizations and the ability to tailor the firearm to different hands.

The only complaint I have is I wish that the trigger guard was undercut more. After hundreds of draws and shooting the gun, it starts to rub my middle finger raw. This may be due to using the Medium grips instead of larger for my hands however. I keep the medium ones on since it is thinner and seems to help it conceal better.

One major complaint you will hear about Glocks is the grip angle. It is good news to many (including myself) that the M&P points like a 1911. I find myself faster, more comfortable, and more accurate with this grip angle.


Sights
Thankfully, S&W put Novak type sights on the gun. They give a clear sight picture compared to the Glock stock sights. However, the sight picture is not as crisp as a set of Heinie sights of the Warren Tactical Sights. Both companies plan on making M&P sights and the sights are in the prototype stages currently. I am not a fan of dots on the rear so I used the only thing I had near me and tried to black it out. I have found I shoot faster and more accurately with a front dot only set up.

http://img165.imageshack.us/img165/9881/frontsightcq7.jpg


Magazines
The magazines are steel 17 round magazines. Witness holes on both sides to view the rounds. The magazines are thin and really fly out during magazine changes. I have the newest version with the gray followers.

http://img474.imageshack.us/img474/2318/1106061845yy5.jpg

http://img370.imageshack.us/img370/3043/1106061847rr1.jpg

http://img474.imageshack.us/img474/8009/1106061849fw8.jpg

http://img474.imageshack.us/img474/1722/1106061849awi5.jpg


Initial Trigger Feel
Like the other M&Ps I have fondled/used, the initial trigger take up is crunchy. After a few hundred trigger pulls during dry fire, it started to smooth out. The take up is light and the break is good. Slight amount of creep during the break and it breaks at roughly 5-6 pounds on my gun. I have never been a fan of Glock triggers as it feels like a dart gun. The M&P feels totally different and makes the trigger very manageable due to the sear/trigger bar set up.


Take Down
Well the take down is more complicated than on a Glock. However, I think this is a good thing for most shooters. To take it down, you must lock the slide back. Next, take a pen or punch and trip the sear deactivation lever. After, rotate the take down lever. Release slide and the slide comes off. Some people do not like the slide deactivation lever, but it forces the used to observe an empty chamber prior to disassembly. Also, the user does not need to pull the trigger to disassemble. I have heard and read of way too many AD/NDs from failures to clear the gun with Glocks.

Shooting Impressions
Now what you have been waiting for...how it shoots!

Recoil
What recoil? The gun is very soft shooting and with the light hanging on the front feels like a .22 handgun. I am not exaggerating either. The recoil of this 9mm M&P is softer than a Glock 34 to me. The muzzle flip is also very low allowing the shooter to track the sights easy. With a full magazine, the firearm balances great and has enough heft to tame the recoil down. Initially, the recoil spring felt too stiff, but it seems to have broken in thankfully.

Accuracy 15-25 yards

Wow, I love this gun. I am rusty and have not shot a firearm in about 2-3 months. It really makes me look good.

The one complaint I have is the sights are not the best for accuracy work. The front blade is too wide and I do not feel it is tall enough.

Reseted
Note all groups were done with 5 rounds (2 5 rounds groups per target) from a rest/shooting table. Firearm had 85 rounds through it prior to groups and was warm, but not hot. Target unfortunately was swinging due to wire arrangement (have it on video and may post it later…got tired of waiting for it to stop before I shot for groups), but the flyers were user error and rust. I was able to call all flyers on these targets. Ammo used for groups was 115gr Blazer Brass FMJ.

15 yard target
1st group 2” minus called flyer 1.1”
2nd group 3” minus called flyer 2”

http://img296.imageshack.us/img296/6145/1108061347ib5.jpg
http://img296.imageshack.us/img296/6176/1108061355ck7.jpg
http://img296.imageshack.us/img296/1942/1108061355alf8.jpg

25 yard target
1st group 5” minus called flyers 1.2”
2nd group 4.5” minus called flyer 1.9”

http://img299.imageshack.us/img299/3043/1108061335abq5.jpg
http://img362.imageshack.us/img362/1342/1108061336ik9.jpg
http://img299.imageshack.us/img299/519/1108061341ds0.jpg

Offhand

100 rounds on target (20 or so rounds at 15 yards, rest at 25 yards). Rounds on white at 2 and 3 o clock were shot left handed (weak side) only at 25 yards. The rest were shot right (strong) hand only and both hands.

http://img295.imageshack.us/img295/922/offhandoo1.jpg

10 rounds with TLR-1 Light on gun
4” with 2 rounds on left (did not have much of an aiming point, just shot at spot on shoulder)
1.6” without those 2 rounds

http://img50.imageshack.us/img50/6263/offhandtlr1dp4.jpg


Speed and Fighting Distances

The gun was plenty accurate with light recoil to make controlled pairs and failure drills easy. There aren’t many guns I can shoot as fast as 1911s or Glocks here, but the M&P may possibly be even faster in 9mm form.

At 7 yards…
http://img109.imageshack.us/img109/1310/1108061356qk2.jpg

Result of 100 rounds on target:
http://img242.imageshack.us/img242/2294/1108061413xc6.jpg

Another sight complaint here is the rear sight notch is not wide enough. I like wide race cut rear sights as I am able to track the front sight easier. However, I still was able to track the front sight fine.

With Light
Wow, the gun was very soft shooting with the light. The weight hanging on the end really helped tame the already light muzzle flip.


Low Left Problems
Some people have complained the gun shoots low left for them. I have this problems with Glocks. The gun simply does not fit my hand and even when I pay attention to breathing, sight alignment, and trigger control I am low left. Glock 9/.40s are the only guns that does this to me. The larger frames (20/21) do not do this for me. Also, no problems with the M&P. People have complained the gun shoots low left for them. If I purposely jerked the trigger, I could get the gun to go low left EVERY time…

http://img159.imageshack.us/img159/7228/jerkinglm8.jpg

3 rounds in white are due to jerking. Aimed for center of head, jerked trigger and consistently made gun shoot to that area at 7 yards.


Reliability
Wanted to put through closer to 400 rounds, but only got through 320 before I got too tired. No problems at all in regards to reliability.

Rounds used: 50 rounds Blazer Brass 115gr FMJ
200 rounds UMC 115gr FMJ
34 rounds Winchester 147gr JHP
36 rounds assorted Winchester and Blazer Brass 115gr FMJ

http://img402.imageshack.us/img402/2678/1108061335tx3.jpg
http://img402.imageshack.us/img402/3167/1108061404wz1.jpg
http://img402.imageshack.us/img402/3319/1108061406bo1.jpg


Criticisms

Trigger undercut
After shooting the gun and drawing many times, the gun rubs my middle finger badly. I don’t know if there is enough material between the mag catch and the trigger guard to remove plastic, but it would be more comfortable if it was possible.

Reset
Coming from Glocks and 1911s, the reset is too long and not firm. A few times, I short stroked the trigger due to the reset. The short Glock reset is ingrained in my muscle memory which caused this issue. In the future, I hope to send my gun to Dan Burwell for a 3.5 lb trigger job and a shorter reset/overtravel. While I did not feel it was critical (even with my sweaty hands), it would be nice to have Dan make the grip have some more bite.

Final Notes:
Wish I could get to the range more and afford to shoot more often. I am convinced the M&P is the gun for me. Cannot wait to get a Compact 9mm. Also waiting on some Crimson Trace Lasergrips, Warren Sights, and some Burwell gunsmithing when I save up funds!

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treebeard
November 8, 2006, 08:33 PM
Nice report. I hope you enjoy yours as much as I enjoy mine. Like you said.....what recoil?! I will purchasing the compact version probably next week as my local dealer is getting one in tomorrow.:D :D

possum
November 8, 2006, 08:52 PM
Great report, very detailed, I have been wondering about the m&p's, and i am especially interested, in the sub compacts. glad to hear you are happy with it. congrats and happy shooting.

Stephen A. Camp
November 8, 2006, 08:55 PM
Hello and thank you for the detailed report.

Best.

greener
November 8, 2006, 09:19 PM
Well done review. I'm one of those with one that shoots "low-left" and, after some work, I got most of the low out. Left seems to still be there. This is the first DA semi auto I've owned and it is a touch unforegiving about shooter flaws. I agree with the recoil, or lack thereof. It is easy to find the target, and when I don't mess up on mechanics will shoot very consistently. The medium grip fits quite nicely. First field strip was awkward. The next one was a easy.

At about 800 rounds: no load failures, no fire failures. When I don't screw up, the rounds seem to go where I intended and group fairly well.

Coronach
November 8, 2006, 09:22 PM
Interesting. As you can see by my signature, I just got my M&P, too.

Want to try something? Take your magazines and load them to various levels (from 1 round to full capacity), and see if you can replicate the following malfunctions:

1. Insert magazine into gun forcefully. Does the top round tip up and fail to feed when the slide falls?

2. Insert magazine into gun normally. Drop slide. Does the gun fail to strip the top round?

3. Insert magazine into gun with heel of palm, but allow your hand to slip off forward, as if you were performing a reload under duress and got sloppy. Can you cause the baseplate to slip off with your hand, thus causing the spring, follower, and onboard rounds to fall out?

The only malfunctions I have seen the M&P do with any frequency are these, and some light primer strikes in the original T&E guns we got from S&W (I've had two FTFires with Blazer, but Blazer is notorious for hard primers, so I'm not sure they mean much). The latter seems to have been fixed, and the three listed malfs I have only seen when inserting mostly-depleted magazines (6 rounds or less).

Thanks,

Mike

mattf7184
November 8, 2006, 10:56 PM
Thank you for the kind words everyone. Usually I do not do detailed reports, but remembered I had my camera phone on me today and thought about giving it a try.

Coronach, no to any of the above. At the range, I generally only load 5-10 rounds to make the sessions last longer, so I did plenty of reloading, etc today. I just tried what you asked every which way and no problems at all.

Mulliga
November 8, 2006, 11:43 PM
Matt, you should do them more often. :P

It's a lot of gun for $370 NIB. And with the 4th-gen GLOCKs not really making any changes (besides making people pay for new mags :eek: ), I think S&W really has a chance to gain a lot of plastic fans.

mattf7184
November 8, 2006, 11:45 PM
I do too. Plus it would be nice to see an American gun in American holsters.

I also wanted to add that the M&P carries better in a Comptac Infidel than my G19 in a CTAC. For some reason it feels thinner, but I cannot decide if it is more the gun or holster. The mag pouch is definitely thinner for the M&P magazines which makes less printing as well.

Coronach
November 9, 2006, 12:39 AM
I recognize that you have a 9 and not a 40, but could you do me a favor, if you get a chance? Take pics of the magazine, particularly the baseplate and the follower...I'm wondering how many different iterations there are of this magazine design out there.

Mike

mattf7184
November 9, 2006, 09:40 PM
Here are the requested magazine pictures:

http://img175.imageshack.us/img175/525/1109062134os6.jpg

http://img175.imageshack.us/img175/6161/1109062134azl0.jpg

http://img381.imageshack.us/img381/9039/1109062134bgd2.jpg

http://img392.imageshack.us/img392/2006/1109062135ru0.jpg

http://img175.imageshack.us/img175/3512/1109062135adz3.jpg

Coronach
November 10, 2006, 12:15 AM
Interesting. The baseplate looks identical, but the mag body is different (likely just the difference between the 9mm and .40 versions).

Another thing to test: drop the empty magazines on a hard surface (if you don't mind scuffing them a little). Do the followers ever jam in the "up" position? It seems like they slip ever so slightly forward, enabling the follower to catch on the edge of the magazine body. The solution is to just wiggle them a little and they'll pop loose.

Mike

mattf7184
November 10, 2006, 12:36 AM
Gunna wait until I get some mag bumpers or extra mags before I start dropping them on cement.

Coronach
November 10, 2006, 12:45 AM
Yeah, I can understand that. Truth be told, that particular glitch is a non-issue, anyway. Who cares of the follower sticks on a discarded, empty mag?

Mike

cbsbyte
November 10, 2006, 01:15 AM
Thank you for the report. Your review sounds like another postive experience with the Smiths. I have yet to shoot one but I handled a well used .40 M&P & 9mm demos at S&W Performance center shooting range not too long ago, I did notice the the slide rattled alot on the frame. Those guns probably had thousands of rounds through them, at that point and where not well maintained. I am very intrigued by the M&P series pistols, and really thinking of buying one once they are approved for sale by the Mass State Attorney General.

mattf7184
November 10, 2006, 08:08 AM
Interesting about the amount of play. Never seen a rattling M&P or Glock for that matter. Mine has a slight amount of horizontal play at the front and rear slide rails, but no vertical movement. Like you said, it could be because it was an abused demo gun.

markformac
April 25, 2007, 07:01 PM
I am a police officer and was recently issued the M&P 9mm. I have had the Bianchi model 7135 (http://www.bianchi-intl.com/product/Prod.php?TxtModelID=7935) holster for awhile now and love it. Problem is, they don't have a size to order for the M&P 9mm. I was told by a friend the M&P has the same dimensions as the Glock 21 or 22. Can anyone verify this with a duty holster?

Coronach
April 29, 2007, 01:57 PM
The M&P40 has the same external dimensions as the Glock 20/21, at least as far as holsters are concerned. I have no idea about the M&P9.

Mike

Omaney
April 30, 2007, 10:34 PM
I have owned my M&P40 for about 2.5 months. I was impressed with it while fondling it at the gun counter and even more impressed upon firing the thing. I do not have the opportunity to shoot it as often as i would like but I have put about 500 rounds through it with 0 malfunctions. Wow...40 S&W ammo is expensive! Next purchase is a reloading rig (yay more research:banghead: ). I too have the "lefties" and I swear it's the sights!:rolleyes: I am almost to the point of replacing my trusty S&W 5904 (thousands of rounds fired with 0 malfunctions) as my CCW with the M&P40.

robertbank
December 2, 2007, 10:01 AM
For those of us stuck with 10 rd mags, one complaint up here has been how fragile the base pads are in their 10 rd mags. Guys who live in States with the 10 rd limit care to comment if S&W has solved this problem or if it has been a problem south of the border.

Take Care

Bob

btg3
December 2, 2007, 09:00 PM
My son and I each have a M&P9c. With 3 shooters, his pistol shot dead straight. Mine shot 2" left. So, I moved my rear sight and now both pistols shoot straight.

Geno
December 2, 2007, 09:14 PM
I keep looking at the S&W M&Ps, handling them...dreaming. I like the mid-size & full-size in .40 S&W. The prices seem right, but I guess I need to rent one first. The grip is just something incredibly comfortable. Watching from the sideline with interest. :) Edit to add, can't believe I didn't add this, the other factor I'm mulling over is the caliber: 9mm or .40 S&W. This range report makes me lean to 9mm.

Doc2005

btg3
December 3, 2007, 07:25 AM
Don't forget the rebate: $50 and 2 more magazines.

wally
December 3, 2007, 08:01 AM
Don't forget the rebate: $50 and 2 more magazines.

Offer is only good thru Jan 2008, so don't wait too long to try one!

I've the .40 and find it very plesant to shoot. If I remember, .40 was the first on the market, and the 9mm guns had some problems initially, but S&W's outstanding customer service seems to have left few complaining.

--wally.

delmardel
February 1, 2008, 08:43 PM
Can someone please tell me if The M&P's trigger pull can be adjusted like the Glock's? I want a short trigger pull but i'm stuck between the M&P and The Glock 17. Thanks!

dwelch
February 16, 2009, 07:32 PM
I have looking for something my son can shoot , he has just turned 14 and in the tampa police dept explorers. I want to start getting him trained to shoot. He would like to get on the shooting team. This appears to be a good gun to start on. He has not had a lot of time on the range . And all the weapons he has been shooting are rentals have not tried this one, but would like to thanks for the info.

krs
February 16, 2009, 08:33 PM
I LIKE the M&P. I bought one, partly because Bud's allowed me to access their $399. price and partly because I wanted another reliable 9mm for my wife's side nightstand. When it arrived the only reason I didn't turn over my Glock 19 to her and keep the M&P was that I have a holster for the Glock that works for me. I still prefer the pistol over all other tupperware and keep getting the inclination to buy a .45 M&P to take the place of my more cumbersome SA Tactical .45 that's my next to the TV gun.

I think that in tupperware the M&P has all of the marbles.

I mean as long as we're reviving dead soldiers......:D

kmbrman
February 16, 2009, 10:35 PM
Everyone who first shoots the M&P 9mm on paper will probably think the gun shoots low & left. After you break in the trigger and get accustomed to the feel ,you will find this will correct on it's own. I experienced the same thing until I got my trigger control down by dry-firing and shooting several boxes of shells through the pistol. By the way , in a Poly Gun shootout in one of the popular gun test mags, the M&P was the most accurate Poly Gun at 50' , outdoing the Glock 17 by holding 2.5 inches with the M&P9 and 3 inches for the Model 17 Glock !

Ben86
February 17, 2009, 12:06 PM
S&W finally made a really nice polymer framed pistol. I have the 9mm compact and love it. My wife loves it too, she says it's hers. That fine with me as long as I can buy the full size!

Another good thing is that its actually a product of the USA.

Reliability, comfort, accuracy, affordability, what more is there?

krs
February 17, 2009, 01:33 PM
Reliability, comfort, accuracy, affordability, what more is there?

Colt 1911's.

Ben86
February 17, 2009, 05:40 PM
That doesn't fit affordability. Well at least not the <$500 type. :)

historybuff
October 3, 2009, 09:02 PM
my wife and I both have M&P 9s and they just keep on firing with out problems. They are quick to breakdown and clean. Ours came with two clips and we got one each from S&W since we bought them within a month of each other.

LoneStarWings
October 3, 2009, 11:15 PM
I really enjoy my M&P 40 but agree on the trigger reset issue. Compared to a glock, the reset just isn't as positive (i.e. requies more pressure to be released for it to happen). As a result, I feel like I can double tap a glock a little bit faster. On the plus side, M&P's trigger pull itself seems to be lighter than most glocks, if you want to consider that a positive or a gun with only a trigger safety. In the end though,that's just nitpicky; I can overlook a lot if the gun is reliable, and it is.

cowboy1964
November 24, 2009, 12:26 PM
Well the take down is more complicated than on a Glock. However, I think this is a good thing for most shooters. To take it down, you must lock the slide back. Next, take a pen or punch and trip the sear deactivation lever. After, rotate the take down lever. Release slide and the slide comes off. Some people do not like the slide deactivation lever, but it forces the used to observe an empty chamber prior to disassembly. Also, the user does not need to pull the trigger to disassemble. I have heard and read of way too many AD/NDs from failures to clear the gun with Glocks.


Sorry but if anyone is that careless then they would have accidents eventually regardless of the type of weapon. If someone can't observe proper gun safety 100% of the time then they have no business handling them. PERIOD.

No handgun should require any sort of tool to field strip it.

cowboy1964
November 24, 2009, 12:30 PM
the M&P was the most accurate Poly Gun at 50' , outdoing the Glock 17 by holding 2.5 inches with the M&P9 and 3 inches for the Model 17 Glock !

Wow a whole 0.5 inch difference? That's statistically insignificant. How many rounds through each did they fire? Ammo variation alone could account for 0.5 inches.

SheepNutz
November 24, 2009, 08:48 PM
It should be noted though that you can take down an M&P by pulling the trigger like with a Glock. Me, I just use my pinky finger to push the seer disconnect lever down. No take down tool needed.

Retired Cav Scout
December 14, 2009, 06:50 PM
Long time reader of all the threads, a lot of great info. Thanks to all who have taken the time to make comments. I bought a M&P 9 today after a lot of research. It was a toss up between a G19 or a m&P 9. The M&P won. I was never a real big fan of a 9mm, especially since I turned my 1911 into the arms room and signed for a M9, that was just wrong lol.

I wanted to mix up the weaponry here at home a little,so I asked around,read a lot and found out that there isn't any thing wrong with a 9mm.( hard to admit for a .45 guy)

I have 3 friends in LE and all 3 recommended the M&P much to my surprise. After shooting 100 rounds this afternoon, I am well pleased. No complaints at all.

I had a glock .45 and just didn't care for the way the grip felt. S&W has made a very fine semi automatic this time.

tlmkr38
December 15, 2009, 08:12 PM
I bought the M&P 40 because to be honest it's the only 40 I have ever shot that didn't feel like it was kicking harder than my 45's. I've had Glocks, Smith 4006, Para and Springfield XD and none of them can compare in my opinion.

ckone
December 16, 2009, 01:36 PM
delmardel - Can someone please tell me if The M&P's trigger pull can be adjusted like the Glock's? I want a short trigger pull but i'm stuck between the M&P and The Glock 17. Thanks!

LoneStarWings - I really enjoy my M&P 40 but agree on the trigger reset issue. Compared to a glock, the reset just isn't as positive (i.e. requies more pressure to be released for it to happen). As a result, I feel like I can double tap a glock a little bit faster. On the plus side, M&P's trigger pull itself seems to be lighter than most glocks, if you want to consider that a positive or a gun with only a trigger safety. In the end though,that's just nitpicky; I can overlook a lot if the gun is reliable, and it is.

Here's a DIY guide to a M&P trigger job posted by M&P-smith Dan Burwell:http://www.burwellgunsmithing.com/M&Ptriggerjob1.htm


In 25mins I took my M&P with a so-so trigger and soft reset to an OUTSTANDING trigger with an awesome, short, positive Glock-like reset... Once you shoot an M&P with the trigger job you'll be hooked, I was a Glock die-hard for the longest but I never had a trigger even close to as good...

My M&P with the trigger job is amazing, I highly recommend trying it.

Nevertoomanyguns
December 18, 2009, 03:24 PM
Good range report. I have an M&P 45 that I've owned for about a year now. At first I had a problem with the trigger reset too, but after plenty of range time with it I am use to it now.

I also had a problem with shooting to the left of where I was aiming too. This was an easy fix. I was use to using less trigger finger with my 1911 and glock. With those guns I centered the trigger on the pad of my finger, between the tip and first joint. With the M&P I found that I had to use more trigger finger, now the first joint of my finger touches the right edge of the trigger,(I'm Right handed), now my shots hit point of aim. This gun shoots tight and now my only problem is keeping up with the reloading so I can keep feeding it. No failures yet either but I only have a couple thousand rounds through it so far.

Wirenut1212@yahoo.com
December 19, 2009, 09:20 PM
I love my new M&P 40 have put about 400 rounds threw it. Here is my CC qualifing target, 15 with my 40 and 15 with my ruger single six.

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