Looking for feedback on the S&W 5906...


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GZOh
July 26, 2008, 10:05 AM
Looking for some feedback on the S&W 5906 (9mm)...
Anyone have experience owning one, shooting one?...
Thanks

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MikeJ
July 26, 2008, 10:22 AM
I've owned one for over 20 years and it is a great pistol. I have NEVER had any failures with it. A little on the heavy side but extremely well made and very comfortable to shoot.

Storm
July 26, 2008, 10:51 AM
I've owned one for over 20 years and it is a great pistol. I have NEVER had any failures with it. A little on the heavy side but extremely well made and very comfortable to shoot.

I've owned two 5903s (and still own and shoot one) which is the alloy framed version. They are accurate and extremely reliable. If you can, heft both a 5906 and 5903. You will find the 5903 a good bit lighter, if that's an issue to you.

There are lots of police trade-in guns available that offer some great deals. Most are carried a lot and fired relatively little. At the very most they require a new recoil spring and maybe a little cosmetic touch-up, if you want, that is easily accomplished with some steel wool or a Scotch Brite pad (on stainless finishes). If you do go for an alloy framed gun and the cosmetic aspects are an issue you should consider the finish on the frame as they are coated and can't be touched up like a steel framed gun. Grips tend to be banged up on police guns but the grips can be replaced cheaply with factory grips from numerous sources, or replaced by Hogues (which I don't like on these guns).

Rmart30
July 26, 2008, 10:55 AM
I have a 5946 which is a dao 5906...... Great gun, easy to shoot and have had no problems with it.

The Lone Haranguer
July 26, 2008, 11:03 AM
I owned the similar 5904, a blued, alloy-frame version. It was decently accurate and never once malfunctioned, nor has any S&W "Third-Gen" I've owned.

bharen
July 26, 2008, 11:05 AM
Until the new M&Ps came along, the 5906 was S&Ws flagship full size 9mm duty pistol. Some estimates say that more 5906s filled police holsters than Glocks ever did. They are big, brawny, unapologetic all metal (and perhaps somewhat overbuilt) duty pistols. I love 'em!

The 5906 is a TDA (traditional double action) pistol; the first shot is double action, follow-up shots are single action. Triggers are good (but not great). The pistols offer very good accuracy and can handle hot loads (+P) without a breaking a sweat.

The 5906 has been out of S&Ws catalog for a few years, but thousands of good-to-excellent used examples are available at great prices. In fact, some distributors (like CDNN) still sell NIB examples at a little over half of their original retail price.

They were made in a number of variations - adjustable sights, Novak sights, Tritium sights, straight backstraps, curved backstraps, MIM parts, non-MIM parts, etc. They were even available with light rails in the later TSW incarnations.

Replacement parts are readily available from S&W and distributors like Brownells and Midway. The are easy to field strip and clean. Virtually all have magazine disconnect safeties.

Magazines are available from both S&W and MecGar. S&W is real proud of their magazines and prices them accordingly. The good news is that used factory magazines are readily available at good prices (about $20 each) from outlets like CDNN. MecGar magazines are just as good and are a bit cheaper.

Bottom line - the 5906 is a great pistol!

Storm
July 26, 2008, 12:31 PM
bharen, I see that you are from Atlanta as am I. Gwinnett County PD and SD traded in their 3rd Gen Smiths and Adventure Outdoors has had them for sale. Like many I've had my pick. Among other models they have had the 5906 and 5903. My 5903 is a Gwinnett County Sheriff's Department gun (stamped on the side) I see the police guns in both the steel frame 06 and the alloy frame 03. Is there any difference other than the frame material?

BTW, these guns have cleaned up beautifully.

GZOh
July 26, 2008, 01:25 PM
Thanks for the feedback guys...very helpful!

GZOh

(disregard pics... for another post)

Owen
July 26, 2008, 01:51 PM
I love the 5906. underrated gem from S&W.

Titus
July 26, 2008, 02:07 PM
I went and looked and here's what I said about my 6906 (compact version) back in 2005. Smith's 3rd gen autos are great guns.

I've had mine for 12-13 years and have put umpteen thousands of rounds through it and it just keeps perking along. Some time back when Wideners was running a sale on once-fired military brass, I thought I'd give the 5000 count boxes a try. Worked good, so I bought more. Don't know how much I have left but I haven't loaded 9mm since 1998 and most of it has gone through my 6906.

It's as accurate as any of my other pistols too I would say.

357wheelgunner
July 26, 2008, 02:55 PM
A beat up security guard tradein 5906 was my first centerfire handgun, bought for long trips from Wisconsin to Kentucky in college. It was a good gun, but was very inaccurate with anything but 147 gr bullets. I'd buy one, especially now that they're extremely affordable.

Aahzz
July 26, 2008, 07:47 PM
My 5906 is rock-solid, reliable, accurate, and a joy to shoot.

burningsquirrels
July 26, 2008, 07:52 PM
gzoh, what are you up to?? lol!

knicks118
July 26, 2008, 07:58 PM
When I was shopping for my first gun, it was between the BHP and the 5906.

5906:
Pros:
-Great reviews online
-Reliable and well made
-Accurate with great recoil
-Looks nice, all stainless steel (the one I was testing)
-Staggered mags, 15 standard (the one I was testing), can get 17 rd from Mecgear
-Fully ambidextrous safeties
-DA trigger

Cons:
-Heavy/bulky
-Mags are around $30 (when I checked)

GZOh
July 26, 2008, 08:22 PM
bs... Have always liked S&Ws... first three guns I ever owned, S&W revolvers (.357s, .38... flawless). When I first saw the 5906 it reminded me of the CZ 75B. Friend has one and loves it (like all the guys responding to the post)!!... I'll shoot it this week and see how it shoots. Have never heard any real negatives on it. You know me, love those 'all-metal' guns, and the prices are really pretty good, $299-319 , now that it's been discontinued. We'll see.

BTW: that 40B is just a well made, great shooter... but still gettin adjusted to $30 for a box of 100!!... Also, love that pic you sent 240 on 'hot-rod' shooting!

freakshow10mm
July 26, 2008, 08:30 PM
I have some extra small parts, slides, barrels, and 3 10rd mags if anyone needs anything.

GZOh
July 26, 2008, 08:38 PM
BTW... freakshow, how ya doin with that gun I sent ya?? Hope you're enjoyin it!!

bharen
July 26, 2008, 11:58 PM
bharen, I see that you are from Atlanta as am I. Gwinnett County PD and SD traded in their 3rd Gen Smiths and Adventure Outdoors has had them for sale. Like many I've had my pick. Among other models they have had the 5906 and 5903. My 5903 is a Gwinnett County Sheriff's Department gun (stamped on the side) I see the police guns in both the steel frame 06 and the alloy frame 03. Is there any difference other than the frame material?

BTW, these guns have cleaned up beautifully.

Storm, Hello! I'm actually down in Fayette County.

The only difference between the 5906 and the 5903 is the frame material; the 5905 is steel, the 5903 is aluminum alloy. The slide and all internal parts are the same. Just FYI, the 5903 I owned was the most accurate 9mm handgun I've ever shot. I regretted selling it the minute I handed it over.

A few of the Gwinett SD pistols have made it into the gun stores down here (as have some of the recent Atlanta PD trade-ins), but I think they are over priced. I can buy an excellent quality 5906 or 4006 from CDNN and even with shipping and transfer fees it's cheaper than what the local dealers are asking.

burningsquirrels
July 27, 2008, 12:18 AM
storm, where in atlanta are you from? i'm regularly in downtown l'ville for the wednesday night uspsa shoot and the thursday night plink, and shoot the weekend matches around here.

freakshow10mm
July 27, 2008, 12:51 AM
GZOh, haven't shot it yet.

neviander
July 27, 2008, 01:59 AM
Great shooter, all stainless, tack driver.

Storm
July 27, 2008, 11:33 AM
Howdy bharen and buriningsquirrels. I'm in Alpharetta. I do make it to Lawrenceville to go to Bulls Eye (good folks). I don't shoot there but am a customer. I picked up my 5943 SSV from them. I've done lost of business with there. I have also seen their selection of 3rd Gen Smiths trim down quite a bit!

As to the CDNN guns, I agree that the 3rd Gen Smiths are a good deal. The ex-police guns here from Gwinnett are around $330. Most of my 3rd Gen Smiths have been in the $300 to $330 range. There are a good number of used CS9s priced at $349.

I stuck with buying from the shop, Adventure Outdoors, for a number of reasons. First, I considered the price to be fair and was able to cherry-pick. They take good care of me and their customers in general. Second, I like to be able examine a gun in person. I like the hands-on aspect of that inspection. Also, I was trading in some guns to make some room in the vault, so I got a better deal rather than selling and taking my business to CDNN. Also, other than the 5906 and 6900 Series pistols all that CDNN has been offering as of late are Forties, and that isn't my focus with the Smiths. I was really looking for a 3913 and .45s. I did acquire a number of .45s, a 645, 745 ISPC, 4586, and 4516-1. BTW, for a .40 I ended up with a 4040PD Airlite, an interesting little gun.

Up here I haven't seen any of the Atlanta Police Smiths except on GunBroker. They must have all drifted south rather than north. I know that many of them were the .40 tactical models. I wouldn't mind sneaking up on one. I have a lot of ex-police guns in my arsenal from both here and Europe. I think that the police trade-ins often offer great deals if you are careful.

burningsquirrels
July 27, 2008, 11:36 AM
yeah, i like AO too but they're a little far from me. in alpharetta do you go to the 'other' bullseye in cumming? they have their local club shoot on sunday nights. i've been meaning to go, but 3x a week is enough lol.

Storm
July 27, 2008, 12:15 PM
yeah, i like AO too but they're a little far from me. in alpharetta do you go to the 'other' bullseye in cumming? they have their local club shoot on sunday nights. i've been meaning to go, but 3x a week is enough lol.

I shoot indoors there it just up the road. The owner Doug is good people. He's my go-to guy for Steyr as Steyr (SAI) is one street over from them.

I was just there a week ago warming up some of my "new" Smith 3rd Gens. The 3913, CS9 and 4586 were flawless. The 3913 really shined. So did my SW1911. I can see that the DAO trigger of the 4586 is going to take some work and a lighter hammer spring from Wolff.

I was a little surprised that Bulls Eye in Lawrenceville hasn't had any Gwinnett Smiths, especially with the courthouse within spitting distance. I wonder what those guns sold for, I assume at auction or to the highest bidder. Somehow my 645 was a police gun, which was really a surprise.

GZOh
July 27, 2008, 05:53 PM
Storm... Are most of the ex-police 5906s pistols you've seen 'Stainless'?... Know the CDNN ads show SS... Wondering if you've ever seen the gun available in all-Black (or 'Blue' as they say)?
Thanks
GZOh

Titus
July 27, 2008, 05:55 PM
The "6" in 5906 indicates stainless, but you may see a 5904 or one of the others that would be black.

GZOh
July 27, 2008, 06:44 PM
Thanks Titus... that was simple enough. Appreciate the info...
Were the ex-pol guns mostly the '06' stainless models... or can you still find the '04' Blacks?

Titus
July 28, 2008, 12:05 AM
Back in the day, S&W had a wheel that you could use to decode the 3rd gen model numbers. I think most if not all the trade-ins I have seen were stainless, but beyond that I don't know.

Storm
July 28, 2008, 10:02 AM
Storm... Are most of the ex-police 5906s pistols you've seen 'Stainless'?... Know the CDNN ads show SS... Wondering if you've ever seen the gun available in all-Black (or 'Blue' as they say)?
Thanks
GZOh

Yes, I've only seen stainless police trade-ins, both the Gwinnett County and Atlanta PD guns. The one shop does have used black 5900 series guns, but I don't believe they are ex-police. I think that with our heat and humidity stainless was the only way to go. I recall years ago when St. Louis went to stainless DAO Smiths they quite specifically stated that the finish choice was due to the very high humidity.

BTW, here is the Smith "Whiz Wheel" that was referred to: http://www.thegunzone.com/whiz_wheel.html

freakshow10mm
July 28, 2008, 10:53 AM
I've been trying to track one of those wheels down, but no luck.

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