Just Bought New 9mm M&P, Advice on Apex Trigger/Action Kit?


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Evergreen
September 10, 2010, 04:07 AM
Hi everyone.. I just bought new M&P 9mm on gunbroker. I think I got a good deal. Paid a total of $620 including shipping , FFL, background check and got the full sized 4.25 9mm M&P law enforcement model, that comes with 3 17rd magazines , Novel-Tritium front and rear night sights as well as a $50 rebate or 2 17rd free magazines (I will choose the latter) from Smith & Wesson. Also, the gun does not have those annoying internal locks and the magazine disconnect safety. Even though the magainze disconnect safety seems like a nice feature to have, I just fear that this type of safety may cause my gun to malfunction when my life depends on it. Anyhow, I got the setup I wanted, never easy to find what I want locally in Oregon.

I feel like I got a good deal, and avoided the Pro series that came with 1 mag less and had an additional price of around $40 or so.


My plans right now are on purchasing the APEX M&P Duty/Carry Action Enhancement Kit (DCAEK) for my M&P 9.
https://apextactical.com/store/produ...pg1-cid11.html

Unfortunately, I am not very saavy in gunsmithing and really don't have the equipment or knowledge to install the better parts into my gun. What I like to know is how much should a competent gunsmith charge me for installing the parts of the kit? I know some smiths around here can give you the runaround, so I like to know if anyone has had this done or has good ballpark figure? Also, does anyone know any good gunsmiths in the Portland, OR area who is experienced at doing this type of worK? I'd be interested in any referrals people can give me.

I have heard nothing but praises about the improvement that the Apex kit has made to the M&Ps, many claiming a much superior trigger and reset then even the more spendier and sexier name semi autos. I figure I may hold off on doing this, but was considering maybe just doing it now.

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Hangingrock
September 10, 2010, 08:29 AM
Smith&Wesson offers an “M&P Pistol Action Package” by the Performance Center custom services page number 60 of the 2010 catalog. S&W warranty is life time on OEM, after market parts may void their warranty should your MP-9 require factory service.

RH45
September 10, 2010, 08:36 PM
The Apex kits are a piece of cake to put in. Randy Lee has a utube video, showing exactly how to install it.

9mmepiphany
September 10, 2010, 11:10 PM
You really owe it to yourself to take a look at the YouTube videos to see if you can handle it. The one thing that is handy, but not required, is a vice to hold the gun as you tap the rear sight out...everything just drops in, there is no fitting needed.

Randy speaks clearly and slowly, he's easy to understand and doesn't speak in gunsmith lingo...plus Scott holds the camera steady :)

The factory M&P Pistol Action Package doesn't have the impact that the DCAEK will as far as improvement. It has been reported that the DCAEK is a lot nicer than the action that comes on the Pro model...plus you don't need to ship your gun off.

Apex Tactical stands behind their parts...their testing is what took so long to get the parts to market...and you can remove them before sending in your gun to the factory for work.

Apex also does a better action tune for S&W revolvers than is available from the factory

Evergreen
September 11, 2010, 01:06 AM
Thanks for the info epiphany.. I was a little worrid about thew hole warranty issue. My first M&P 45, had a chip inside the slide which I had to return and exchange for a new one from S&W. I was worried some manufacturer defect may be voided if I put the new Apex kit inside. By removing it and replacing it with the original parts, I can see that if I feel something went wrong with the gun, outside the kit , I could send it into S&W.

Well, it does look fairly easy to install.. However, I do get a bit nervous when pulling apart my guns. Even when it looks easy on the videos, once I am inside it, I get a bet confused and worried I might screw something up. Also, I am missing a couple tools in the kit. I suppose a rubber mallet wouldn't work for the hammer or would you need to buy one of those funky hammers he used in the video? Also, are the devices used to punch out the screws/bolts called punches? Where do I get a set of these? In essence, where would I be able to get the various parts in the video? I'm sure they would be good tools to keep around in my limited gunsmithing toolbox.

I watched the first video and part of the second, but soon as I saw him taking tiny screws apart I started getting jittery. I guess I could give it a go.. WOuld be kind of cool if I could pull it off. I just don't want to have to do any bending, manipulating, smoothing type of work with power tools.

Skylerbone
September 11, 2010, 02:41 AM
STOP THE PRESSES EVERGREEN!

DO NOT SELF-INSTALL THE STRIKER BLOCK! I hope I have your attention now. I've swapped the Apex parts into one of my M&Ps and did a home trigger job on the other two. The biggest hassle was with the rear sight removal. The first one (with Apex parts) was a royal pain and destroyed two brass drift punches in the process. (OK, I ground them down and they're usable again but I digress)

The problem with your particular M&P is the sights. Without a propper sight pusher you run a high risk of breaking the tritium vials and it's just not worth the risk. You can buy a pusher/installer for around $120 which would be a great investment if you're planning on more M&Ps (again, I've got 3 and I'm eyeing a 4th) but a gunsmith with the proper tools would likely charge $50 or less for the removal/remount and part swap.

So...I would recommend you check MidWayUSA for an inexpensive punch set, about $12, do the sear job yourself, smooth out the contact points on the trigger bar with a dremel if you have one using the tips found here: http://www.burwellguns.com/misc/M&Ptriggerjob.pdf
and take the striker block to a qualified gunsmith for installation.

The Apex parts really are that good and I'm sure you'll be happy with them but tritium sights are expensive and a bit sensitive to being whacked with a hammer repeatedly. I'd just hate to see you damage them, have to replace them AND take the pistol to the smith on top of it.

Best of luck and stay safe.

Evergreen
September 11, 2010, 03:24 AM
Thanks Skylerbone, I will take your advice to heart. I think I will just have the entire kit, including the sear done by an experienced smith. You're right, the addition of the tritium sights make it all the more complicated. I don't even own a dremmel and I rather not be doing any polishing or manipulation of the gun parts. I got lot of other things going for me and learning how to do gunsmithing is something I will have to wait on in the future. For the $50 or so I will pay a smith, I think its worth it. I just want to make sure I find a good gunsmith who knows what he is doing.

Skylerbone
September 11, 2010, 10:57 AM
I don't mean to totally discourage you from the process but that rear sight can be a real bear. I've looked into tritium sights for my compact and the warnings on them always mention not using a drift punch.

As for the sear, it took me a 4 penny nail and hammer along with some Vise Grips and about 30 seconds. I ordered the sear and striker block as individual parts and at different times (thought the sear alone would be fine). I had little practice working on guns but that half of the project was truly easy. The side benefit was it got me interested in how the pistol worked.

As far as polishing goes, you can buy a set of nail boards (emory sticks) at Wal Mart which work great (using the three pack shape, smooth and shine I think they're labeled)
The link I posted shows the areas to address. If you've ever seen a rough cast piece of metal you'll be able to spot the offenders right away.

It's a worthwhile project and doesn't take long at all. If you're interested in other parts check out speed shooter specialties. For smithing (if you can do without it for awhile) look at bowietacticalconcepts, accurate-iron and burwell gunsmithing in that order.

LawofThirds
September 11, 2010, 11:21 AM
Yes, if you don't have a sight pusher and you do have tritium on the gun, send that bit to a gunsmith. Otherwise, the apex kit is the best trigger I've ever felt on any M&P, from factory tuned, to home gunsmithed to the pro line.

Skylerbone
September 11, 2010, 12:03 PM
Here's what I've done with mine.
http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=127505&d=1284217236

Hangingrock
September 11, 2010, 01:27 PM
I’d say that you need to make a decision between a “Service Pistol” or converting a “Service Pistol” into a new “Toy” AKA “Cash Cow”.

The aftermarket/cottage industry always has enhancements, improvements, gadgets, gismos, and etcetera. Current cash cows in no particular order AR series rifles, tactical shotguns, precision rifles, 1911 series pistols, polymer frame pistols ( Glock-SW and Springfield) and tactical this and that.

As for gunsmiths they are far and few in between you’ll find out of 100 the part changes number 99.

9mmepiphany
September 11, 2010, 02:14 PM
As for gunsmiths they are far and few in between you’ll find out of 100 the part changes number 99.
Then it is a good thing that all he needs is a parts changer ;)

The crew at Apex gave these parts a lot of thought, tested them hard and even recently ran them in competition. They even have a new Reset Assist Mechanism, a 9mm specific extractor and are still developing an improved trigger/bar

I’d say that you need to make a decision between a “Service Pistol” or converting a “Service Pistol” into a new “Toy” AKA “Cash Cow”.
For me the only difference would be the weight of the trigger spring (5lbs Vs. 2.5lbs)...but then I believed in gaining every real practical advantage in my service/duty pistol

Skylerbone
September 11, 2010, 02:38 PM
A crisp, reasonable trigger on a service pistol sans grit, creep and excessive pull weight is practical NOT tacticooool! Ask anyone who totes a 1911 about that.

I hunt with my shotguns and rifles (even the one I posted), I trust my life to my carry pistol and I enjoy shooting round after round after round out of the others as do my family (mom, dad, wife, kids).

I suggested three very competent shops for the op, in fact David Bowie is an active LEO and has done work for the likes of Larry Vickers (who is a Master Gunsmith and helped create the pistol presented to fmr. president Bush). Yeah, that good, parts changer extraordinaire. Burwell works on the M&P EXCLUSIVELY and does quite well in competition with it (YouTube his name for fun).

The op is considering the APEX kit intended for professional carry, not competition or recreation. It is an enhancement AND reliability upgrade. That is why it is endorsed by fellow APEX upgraders. Your point is well taken HangingRock, but in this case it doesn't apply.

PS: To clarify, APEX makes a number of different kits for specific purposes. The op mentioned the Duty/Carry kit as his choice.

Hangingrock
September 11, 2010, 02:59 PM
Skylerbone: "The op is considering the APEX kit intended for professional carry, not competition or recreation. It is an enhancement AND reliability upgrade. That is why it is endorsed by fellow APEX upgraders. Your point is well taken HangingRock, but in this case it doesn't apply."

Ok name a law enforcement agency that has adopted the MP series pistol that has found it necessary to utilize APEX parts in order to enhance the MP as a duty weapon.:)

9mmepiphany
September 11, 2010, 03:31 PM
Ok name a law enforcement agency that has adopted the MP series pistol that has found it necessary to utilize APEX parts in order to enhance the MP as a duty weapon
Using a LE Agency as the bar to measure efficiency makes little sense as they have a track record for issuing guns that don't fit all their members and making decisions based on unit price.

You should be looking at the officers willing to pay for improvements out of the own pocket.

Going to the lowest common denominator isn't a very good argument

Hangingrock
September 11, 2010, 03:51 PM
9mmepiphany: "You should be looking at the officers willing to pay for improvements out of the own pocket."

Ok name a law enforcement agency that has adopted the MP and allows individual officers the discretion of modifying their issued weapons? :)

9mmepiphany
September 11, 2010, 04:33 PM
Ok name a law enforcement agency that has adopted the MP and allows individual officers the discretion of modifying their issued weapons?
I don't personally know, but I would think one of the 330 departments who have adopted the M&P would have a similar policy to my department.

We were allowed to modify our guns as long as the range master had inspected it and signed off on it. In 28 years in LE, I have never carried a stock handgun, or shotgun for that matter, for any length of time. I would sometimes carry a stock gun, when trying out a new platform before having it modified...usually just an action tune.

More often, it was just easier to buy my own gun to carry...plus it had the additional advantage of tweaking the range staff. I used to carry a Beretta on my Sig department, much to the snickers of the range staff until we scored the targets. Departments that don't issue a sidearm, do allow a lot of latitude.

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