A Smith and Wesson M&P Must Read...


August 20, 2007, 12:37 PM
A long time gun owner, first time Pistol buyer. I did my research and decided I would buy a Smith and Wesson M&P in the 40 s&w caliber.

I purchased the 40 S&W M&P New on 8/4/07. I shot one box of 50 rounds through the pistol the same day. After shooting it I oiled the locations listed in the manual and wiped the gun down with a clean rag. I went home put the gun in the new holster I purchased with the gun. I then placed it in our night stand drawer in our temperature controlled bedroom. The gun never touched a drop of water, or sat in a damp location. One week later I take the gun out to shot again and it was covered in rust. Needless to say I was very upset that my new gun, only a week later, looks worse than my 1934 revolver. There is surface rust on the serial number, both magazines, front and rear sight, inside the magazine chamber, and even on the Slide (on the bottom rear and back sides)! I was under the impression the gun was stainless steel. In fact it says stainless just an inch in front of the rust on the slide?! Since it was designed to be a duty pistol I figure it would be low maintence and withstand most conditions. That was not the case; it couldn’t even sit in room kept 70 degrees for one week. I could not imagine it after a month if I was an officer carrying this weapon in the weather.

Buyers beware! I contacted Smith and they are sending me a prepaid label to ship it too them. I will follow up with what they do.

If you are on the fence like i was between the m&p / xd /Glock 22. This should help make up your mind.




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August 20, 2007, 12:50 PM
I can tell you that is highly irregular having both a M&P .40 (1 year) and a M&P .45 (2 weeks) and EVERYTHING about them has been nothing short of pure excellence.
What did you clean it with?
If you used a rag along with what ever cleaner, was the rag clean?
Did the case foam maybe get wet?

August 20, 2007, 12:52 PM
A clean rag just to wipe off the dust and finger prints. I never had any cleaner on it yet. It was only a week old.

It was never near a drop of water...

August 20, 2007, 12:58 PM
was it a leather holster? A gun should never be stored in a leather holster, as the chemicals used to tan the leather will often cause a gun to rust.

August 20, 2007, 01:04 PM

Welcome to the High Road.

There was another member on here that experienced (http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=279721&highlight=M%26P+rust) a rust issue on his M&P as well.

You did the right thing by contacting them and they'll make it right. I sent you a PM regarding my experience with their customer service.

Good luck to you!

For the record, I have three M&Ps (9, 9c, 40) and live in a very humid climate. I haven't had a single issue with rust.

August 20, 2007, 01:10 PM
Nope, This is not my first gun. All my other guns look like they did the first day I bought them.

Besides this is a WEEK OLD! A $1 screw driver doesn't rust in a week.

Here is the holster


August 20, 2007, 01:12 PM
Go with a Glock or a Springfield XD next time. Have both , love both.
Have had several students complain about the M&P, especially about the finish and feeding problems. General concensus,
S&W: superb revolvers.
S&W: semis-(not so much!!).

August 20, 2007, 01:15 PM
That totally sucks!

+1 to "A $1 screw driver doesn't rust in a week."

S&W should take care of you though, I bought a beater 5906 and they sent me free parts for it, I didn't even ask them too, I just posed them a question about the plastic grips and a while later I had new grips in the mail!

August 20, 2007, 01:16 PM
Please keep us informed on your experience with S&W customer service.

Anna's Dad
August 20, 2007, 01:24 PM
Mine actually fell in a river and remained soaking wet for several hours and there is no rust. Definately not typical!

Not to repeat so many posters before me, but I'm sure S&W will take care of you.

August 20, 2007, 02:17 PM
The residue on the rear sight doesn't look like rust from looking at the photo ....maybe just my monitor ???

What it does look like ......is someone taking a "Bluing Pen" and trying to touch up the finish on the sight and [ here is the important part ] forgetting to wipe it off. Many people think [ wrongly ] that if you leave the chemical on the gun longer, it will blacken the finish even more. It doesn't -- what happens is the chemical turns a whitish color.

Don't know who used the Bluing pen on the pistol.......but if that residue is a whitish color [ like it appears on my computer ] it will remove cleanly with some oil and a rag


August 20, 2007, 02:46 PM
you may want to arrange that strap on the holster so it goes over the back of the slide, instead of where you put your hand...

August 20, 2007, 03:03 PM
Looks to me if everything happened exactly the way you say it did, you got a lemon, pure and simple. S&W WILL make it right, they have a very good track record, especially with their excellent new pistol.

As for this being a deciding factor in which gun to get, I don't put much stock in the "chime in" stories. While you may have had a real problem, the ol' "I know some people who have complained" may have been different situations altogether. You never know.

Furthermore, XDs have been reported for rusting far more than M&Ps. Mostly before the .45 version came out. The .45 version was the first with the newer, better finish. Since then, all the other versions have been subjected to this improved finish. Glocks almost are never reported as having rusted. Even Sigs have had this problem. So don't base a decision off of one instance. You could find yourself sorely disappointed.

August 20, 2007, 03:27 PM
Oh man, those pictures made me cringe. Welcome aboard James and I hope S&W can replace it....or get your money back?

August 20, 2007, 03:38 PM
I have no doubt that S&W will make good. Send it back.

August 20, 2007, 03:39 PM
Thanks guys for all the replys! I sent it out overnight today. I will have a full write up when i get it back.

The gun was never touched until I bought it. They opened the box while i was standing there. No bluing was ever on the gun.

August 20, 2007, 03:46 PM
What state do you live in if I may ask?

August 20, 2007, 03:56 PM
I live in PA outside Pittsburgh

August 20, 2007, 04:05 PM
Have you used that holster on other guns and not had them rust?

The reason I ask is I had a holster that looks identical to yours for my Beretta 92. That gun would rust after 24 hours in that holster, and it had a stainless slide. It was light rust that would go away with a good cleaning.

Never rusted again since I stopped using that holster.

Food for thought.


August 20, 2007, 04:12 PM
What kind did you swtich to? When I get my gun back I don't want to take any chances.

August 20, 2007, 04:16 PM
I have a Kydex holster for that gun now. I can't remember if it's Blade Tech or Comp Tac, I like and use them both.


August 20, 2007, 04:26 PM
S&W will make it all better

the naked prophet
August 20, 2007, 04:27 PM
was it a leather holster? A gun should never be stored in a leather holster, as the chemicals used to tan the leather will often cause a gun to rust.

Not necessarily true. If you tan the leather by hand, or buy vegetable-tanned leather, it won't cause rust. Only commercial chrome-tanned leather should induce rust. And nobody makes holsters out of chrome-tanned leather nowadays.

I keep all my handguns, including blued, stainless, and even guns with most of the blue worn off, in modern leather holsters (made by me) and not a one shows a hint of rust.

August 20, 2007, 09:35 PM
I have had good experiences with the customer support over at S&W on a couple of guns. I'm sure they will take care of you. "Stuff" happens occassionally and sometimes a sample gets out of the factory that shoud not have shipped.

I think you are jumping the gun, (pun intended), in castigating S&W products and recommending others to avoid them. It isn't like a the probem is complete negligence and someone could have been hurt or killed. Wait and see if they make it right first. Evaluate their response and then pass a judgement.

I have had to return to the factory S&W, SIG, Glock and Taurus products. If I followed your line of thinking and owned enough different firearms I think I woud eventually narrow down my choices to nothing.

It is how the factory handled the problem that I have based my opinion on their quality. Factory support from SIG and S&W was excellent. Glock was average and Taurus was..... if you have nothing nice to say then don't say anything at all.

August 20, 2007, 09:47 PM
But you didn't answer the most important question... How'd it shoot?! :):):)

Be interesting to see how fast S&W replaces it. Welcome aboard and Keep us updated.

August 20, 2007, 09:59 PM
As for the gun I only shot 50 rounds through. We took my friends 1911 with us and shot both. It was more accurate than the 1911 at 25 yards. The recoil was about the same as a 357. The triger is one of the best I have shot as far as double action goes. The 15 shot clip is nice, and the over all weight of the gun is fine. The sights were nice, and the take down is nice. The take down is like a ruger.

As for the 40 caliber, i personally think it is the best hand gun round for general purposes. When researching hand guns I went out with a few guys shooting different rounds. I thought the 9mm was too weak, the 45 acp and 44 mag too big, and the 357 mag and the 40 just perfect. I just perfered the auto over the revolver. The 357 and 40 s&w were almost identical with recoil and penitration. We were shooting 25 yeard with mine belt as a back stop, and a hill behind that of course. Both did about the same damage on the mine belt. I didn't get a chance to shoot a 357 sig, but heard great things about them.

Ukraine Train
August 20, 2007, 10:55 PM
I think maybe the lack of cleaner on the rag you used to wipe it down may have removed the dust but left some oils from your hands, which caused the rust. Regardless, though, it shouldn't be that bad and hopefully you don't get any grief from S&W.

August 20, 2007, 11:50 PM
We've had some surface rust on our rear sights as well at my PD. This is after exposure to the weather and not wiping the weapon down. For the record, the reason we don't wipe our weapons down after exposure is that we never had rust problems with our 4506s, even the rear sights, so we got lazy. *shrug*

My M&P fullsize had a few spots of rust on the rear sight the last time I cleaned it. Wiping it down made the visible surface rust go away, but I dunno if it will reappear.

A simple fix would seem to be to go back to whatever subcontractor provided the rear sights for the Gen3 autopistols. Those things seemed impossible to make rust. I don't think I ever oiled mine, despite being exposed to the elements for 6 years as a duty gun. No rust.

I've never seen rust on any other parts of a M&P personally, but I have seen pictures online. I'm gathering S&W is having some teething problems getting the finish to go on right.


August 21, 2007, 12:11 AM
I think that's just a fluke, send it back and it will be fixed.
I can't say that I ever had a gun that rusts, and I live near the ocean and it gets humid.
Except my Sigs. heh. damn rust bucket.

no rust on my MP45 on the slide, sights or the lever. I never wipe my gun anyway, well not the one that I put under my pillow every night.

ryan b
August 21, 2007, 01:19 AM
My buddy has a glock that the replacement sight does the same thing he can oil it one day and the next day and I mean the next day the sights will be rusty

August 21, 2007, 11:14 AM
Until S&W works out the bugs, there are many better plastic pistols out there. None quite have the superior ergos the M&P has, but quality this gun is not. I had one, got rid of it quick, no rust issues though. Good thing S&W at least has among the best CS reputations out there. Good luck, hope they take care of it for you.

August 21, 2007, 10:59 PM
S&W will take care of you without a doubt.

If it had been a Glock, the problem, of course, would have been because you were "limp wristing."

August 21, 2007, 11:23 PM
Or there would have been no problem, just a recall and upgrade of several thousand frames.

I can understand waiting until the kinks are worked out, but I'll disagree that the full size guns are not quality. They run fine, with the occasional glitch that all manufacturers have. The compacts seem to be a little more twitchy. While I would not call my M&P40c bad, I'm not yet pleased with its reliability. My full size 40? Good to go.


August 21, 2007, 11:24 PM
We have had some issues with S&W M&P pistols at the shop but I do believe Smith and Wesson will get everything sorted out.
They hurried the guns onto the market to gain sales and as always happens when a manufacturer does that, there are some teething problems.

I recommend getting a bottle of M-Pro7 CLP.
I light coat of this stuff cuts the rust issue on any firearm that is stored.
Because the product molecularly bonds with the surface to which it is applied, each application builds up the rust prevention even more.

We buy the product from http://www.brownells.com and it is one I highly recommend as a general cleaner, luricant, and rust preventer.
As a bonus this product is 'green friendly' and is less toxic to the user and the environment than many other commercial cleaners on the market.

August 21, 2007, 11:27 PM
Strike one up for the Glock, and even the CZ with the polycoat finish.

August 22, 2007, 01:01 AM
I love my M&P but I got to tell you S&W uses the worst grade of stainless steel I've ever seen. I had my M&P bead blasted to show off the stainless and in less than a week in my safe it was covered in rust. I had it hard chromed so now its beautiful. My son shoots it in uspsa. We were at a gunshow last month and my says "OMYGOSH LOOK", I look down on the gun table and theres an M&P with horrible deep rust spots all over the slide. New In Box too, made us sick to our stomachs. I'm not convinced S&W can make it right without renew their stainless steel recipe. I have Para, Taurus and Springfield stainless autos that I can neglect for months on end and nove of these has seen a single speck of rust. I absolutely love my M&P but S&W has really dropped the ball regarding the quality of their stainless steel.

August 22, 2007, 01:06 AM
CZ with the polycoat finish.

at least my MP45 finish looks great compared to CZ's finish. Saw one at the store, as if it was some kid used a paint brush to finish that gun. :D

August 22, 2007, 04:54 AM
I think they've had some variation in either the degree of stainlessness (is that a word?) of the steel or the application of the finish. I've had my M&P40 plenty wet. The only area that has shown any signs of corrosion is the rear sight. The slide itself, even the recesses of the serrations, is corrosion-free.


August 22, 2007, 08:17 AM
What your talking about is chromed tanned leather.

was it a leather holster? A gun should never be stored in a leather holster, as the chemicals used to tan the leather will often cause a gun to rust.

Gun leather is vegetable tanned leather that does not have this problem. The holster should be sealed so sweat and water does not penetrate the leather and then the gun.

Sounds like your sweat is very acidic and you may need to wipe down the gun more often then you would otherwise. Like daily.

August 22, 2007, 09:00 AM
at least my MP45 finish looks great compared to CZ's finish. Saw one at the store, as if it was some kid used a paint brush to finish that gun.
And the CZ will continue to look like that while your MP45 starts to rust all over the place. I know which one I would prefer. ;)

From personal experience, the CZ and Glock finishes are definitely the toughest/most rust resistant.

August 22, 2007, 08:01 PM
Not typical. I have shot my M&P .40 in misty rain and hot weather when my hand was sweaty. I have also waited several days before cleaning it. No rust or misfires when the gun was dirty.

August 23, 2007, 02:14 AM
I don't think its typical----I started reading this thread and went - oh s@#t---my M&P 9 has been stored in a holster(DeSantis) in a range bag for about 2 months now(I know I know) since its last range trip.

Took it out just now---no spots at all.

I just put it all back and locked it back in the cabinet---no problem.

August 23, 2007, 03:31 AM
Stainless steel is stainless steel. There isn't some recipe that S&W creates and makes their own. It is ordered from a supplier and probably is either 300 or 400 series. No stainless steel is rust proof. All stainless steel is rust resistant.

Aren't the sights on the guns Novak? They sure look like Novak low mounts. If the corrosion/rust is coming from the sights then they are probably talking to Novak about their black oxide process. Black oxide on chrome moly has to be neutralized in the final process of coating. If it isn't it will continue to "rust" or "creep".

August 23, 2007, 06:10 AM
I dunno. I agree in general, but I have several stainless steel guns. None of them have shown any indications of rusting, except my Sig P232. It has developed slight feckling on the slide. It has been exposed to the same conditions as my other stainless guns (S&W M64 and 4506). So, clearly there is a variation in the degree of rust resistance of the base metal.


August 23, 2007, 06:55 AM
Guess you can always learn something new. I didn't know stainless would rust. Pit, corrode, yes. Something else to watch for. Been storing my M&P9 in a similar holster off and on for about a year. No signs of any problems. I clean the pistol each time it is fired and wipe down the slide with a very lightly oiled cloth as a last step.

August 23, 2007, 02:32 PM
M&P's aren't the only make that will rust on you! Sigs will rust in a heart beat as well - if you don't take proper care of them. Any gun will rust, it depends upon the environment and manner of maintenance.

August 23, 2007, 09:01 PM
Interestingly enough...

Several officers got caught in a rainstorm the other day. None of them wiped down their weapons, all of which were exposed to a LOT of rain. None of them showed any signs of rust except for one, which developed several spots of active, aggressive rust on the slide and in the chamber and barrel (!) within 24 hours.

This tells me two things:

1. The problem is inconsistent...some guns have it, some don't.

2. When one will rust, it will REALLY rust.



August 23, 2007, 10:04 PM
My M&P 9C and my fullsize have both been 100% reliable and more accurate than they have any reason to be. I find most reports of the "problems" highly suspect due to the fanatical nature of the Glock guys who can't stand the competition. I have heard of more than one claim of rust with the M&Ps though. I carried my 9C almost daily this summer. I use only Mobile 1 oil to clean and lube it and not a spot of rust anywhere. I can't see how yours rusted up like that so quickly but I'll take your word for it and my heart goes out to you. Get it fixed and stick with the M&P. Its an awesome gun.

August 23, 2007, 10:20 PM
Definitely strange. I've had mine for six months, and it has been hot & humid here all summer. The M&P still looks the same as day 1. Rain, humidity, etc haven't had any effect at all on it.

August 23, 2007, 10:49 PM
MD W--IIRC there was a recall years ago on the one piece plastic grips on the 4 digit S&W pistols. I'm not sure which models were involved but I know the 5906 was one of those affected. I know because I have one (an excellant pistol BTW). It seems that if the pistol is dropped and the grip cracked or shattered in some way it would tie up the firing mechanism somehow and make the gun inoperable. Not a good thing for a duty weapon. I think the way you could tell if your gun was not part of the recall was to look at the bottom of the grip and if the grip had a small dimple it was good to go. If yours did not have that dimple S&W would send you a new grip. (Mine just happened to be O.K. by the way). Memory fades sometimes but I'm pretty sure that was the way it worked.

August 23, 2007, 11:42 PM
on the third gen guns, the grip was the mainspring housing. if the grip broke, gun no workee.

I belive they fixed it by changing the polymer used on the grip, so it wouldn't crack.

August 29, 2007, 12:33 AM
Just an update, sent the gun in. S&W received it last tuesday.

I will post a full update when I receive the gun.

August 29, 2007, 01:33 AM

I noticed that you have posted this story on other gun forums. I'd be willing to bet you won't do it on AR15.com again, will you? :uhoh: Yeah, a vast majority of those guys aren't too nice. I read stuff there for info reasons, but never post there. Not everybody is bad, but there are a large number of barf bag keyboard commandos, who will only piss you off. :cuss:

Hope things go well with your weapon. The M&P is a pistol worth having and keeping, in my opinion.

August 29, 2007, 12:59 PM
I bet you get your gun back by the end of the week.

Keep us posted on how it turns out.

September 4, 2007, 05:52 PM
I have the same problem with my m&p 9 - rust on the slide, sights, and "stainless steel" components - mostly on the fish scales. I assumed it was because of the high acidity in my hands. I had the same problem when I was younger and played the trumpet. The brass and silver would deteriorate because of it. With my gun, however, I have been religious about maintaining/cleaning it since I had the rust issue. I noticed it a couple of weeks ago. I would come home from work, take it out of the safe and dry fire it several times for practice and then put it back in the safe. This went on for about 2 weeks. Finally, I took it out to take it to the range and it was covered in rust. I don't know if it was an over-night visible change or if I just didn't notice it before, but it was pretty bad. I had to take the toothbrush to it with some cleaning oil for about 1/2 hour to get it back to shape. Although I am confident that S&W will be good about fixing the situation, I don't want to wait several weeks to get it back. I am very interested in seeing how things work out for you - make sure you post your results when you get the gun back.

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