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Faced with dilemma (M&P Shield 9mm vs. Kahr PM9)

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by AWCherry, May 3, 2013.

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  1. AWCherry

    AWCherry Member

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    So I'm having trouble choosing between 2 pistols for a variety of reasons. I recently put in an order for a Kahr PM9 at the LGS, and was told that 5 were on order, and I would get a phone call when they were received. I like the Kahr for a variety of reasons, first and foremost being how easy it is to conceal. I also happen to think it's a beautiful looking firearm, and those that have had them have mostly positive experiences (more on that in a minute) I've been looking for a compact 9mm platform for summer carry to replace my 1911, and had all but settled on the PM9.

    Cut to today at the LGS - I'm picking up 9mm ammo in preparation for owning the gun, and the lady there asks me how attached I am to the Kahr. She knows I work for the local sheriff's department, and lets me in on S&W's deal for law enforcement: $320 for the M&P Shield in 9mm, 2 mags, and the law-enforcement trigger kit (as opposed to the horrific MA 10lb trigger). Pretty sweet deal, considering I have $700 of store credit there from recent trades.

    I know many of you are Shield proponents, with an equal number being Kahr proponents as well. I'm just looking for unbiased opinions on each in terms of positives and negatives. Right now the Shield definitely wins on price by more than half, but the Kahr has size. I've heard horror stories about Kahr's springs failing to return the firearm into battery, but I've heard nothing but good things about their customer service in the event that something goes wrong.

    It's my day off, I'm outside in this beautiful weather with my dog by my side, so let's talk some pistols, people!
     
  2. Ed4032

    Ed4032 Member

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    Jump on that deal for the Shield quick fast and in a hurry.
     
  3. AWCherry

    AWCherry Member

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    Forgot to add - already put an order in for the Shield as well, with no commitment to buy. They'll call me when it comes in, and if I don't want it, the next LEO gets it.
     
  4. CSG

    CSG Member

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    Locally, both the Shield and PM9 have been popular as off duty weapons but the Shield is less expensive and, from what I understand, has had fewer issues. I've had a PM9 for a few years but it took two trips back to Kahr to fix it to be 100%.

    Today, I'd try the Shield, especially with the LE package discount.
     
  5. Grmlin

    Grmlin Member

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    At that price I would get the shield even though I don't like the feel of it. Sorry to hear you live in Ma I was able to escape back in 86 but most of my family still lives in the western side of the state.
     
  6. AWCherry

    AWCherry Member

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    Yeah, the People's Republic of MA is one giant letdown when it comes to intelligent legislation. You would think that a state of such historical importance to our early history, where we threw off the shackles of tyrannical government, would be a little more conducive to Constitutionally guaranteed rights.

    And Western MA? Right in my area. I'm just outside of Springfield. Hence the need to carry.
     
  7. Madcap_Magician

    Madcap_Magician Member

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    The Shield is the clear choice there unless the smaller size is the most important factor. It is easier to shoot.

    The Kahrs are fine guns, but the steel-frame ones have a reputation for reliability, whereas the polymer ones have had a few more hiccups. Odds are still good that yours would be fine, of course.

    Plus, right now it's much harder to get a Shield than a PM9. If you get the Shield and don't like it, you can trade or sell it easily for more than you paid and get a PM9.
     
  8. AWCherry

    AWCherry Member

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    The Shield is definitely a better deal, and I feel myself now leaning in that direction. Since I can't do anything but wait at this point, I'll just continue to scrounge 9mm ammo where I can, and hope that the wait time isn't too extensive.

    Thanks to all for the input, and I welcome any other thoughts or comments on either firearm.
     
  9. 340PD

    340PD Member

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    I have, and carry both. Your answer totally depends on the trigger system you prefer. The Kahr has a long smooth trigger much like a super slick DA revolver. The Shield trigger is more like the standard Glock system. The Kahr is a lot smaller and is much easier to conceal than the Shield. I shoot both with equal accuracy. I have not had any feeding issues with either gun and I shoot handloads with a variety of powders. If the Kahr has any quirks, just go over to the Kahrtalk forum and you will find all the answers you need to get it exactly the way you want it. I do like the safety on the Shield as I can rack the slide with the safety on. Small sense of security the Kahr does not have.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. AWCherry

    AWCherry Member

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    Thanks for the photo comparison of your firearms! Both of them look great! I don't worry about the lack of a safety on the Kahr. Massachusetts wouldn't be doing its job if it wasn't protecting me from myself at every opportunity. MA-Compliant models not only have a safety and a loaded chamber indicator, but half of the instruction manual is engraved on the top of the slide as well. Not gonna lie, it makes a beautiful gun border on ugly.

    Here's the devil's riddle though - if you could only have one, which would it be?
     
  11. sappyg

    sappyg Member

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    Good question.

    Have the shield 9 & A Kahr CW9. Both are excellent.

    Comes down to what you like. Me. i like them both. But, if I had to choose it would be the shield. Overall it's the better value and more workman like. I have complete confidence in it. My 1st range trip the little S&W ran 140 rounds of the cheap stuff like a pro and made me look way better than I am. Absolutely no break in.
     
  12. SDGlock23

    SDGlock23 Member

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    I've shot a Shield 9mm and owned a PM9 and the cheaper CM9. The Shield is bigger obviously but it shot great. Between the PM9 and CM9, I'd get the CM9 and save some big money, there's very little difference. All of them shoot great, but because of it's size I lean towards the Kahr, but the Shield was nice too, just bigger.
     
  13. Beentown

    Beentown Member

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    I would get the Shield just for the price. But for me I preferred the Kahrs. I have owned about every micro 9 and the Kahrs just can't be beat for me.
     
  14. Grmlin

    Grmlin Member

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    Looked at a shield and they wanted $530 for it. that's $100 over S&W listed retail price.

    I have cousins that live just outside of Springfield, I grew up in Greenfield and left just after graduating as I lived in other places I learned how restrictive Ma was. Like you said, we went to war when the Brits tried to hold us down and tried to confiscate our guns.
     
  15. 340PD

    340PD Member

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    You are putting me on the spot, but considering small semi autos are to be hidden, I would keep the Kahr and sell the Shield. I carried a hammerless snubbie most of the time and the Kahr is pretty much the same trigger system. I have a very thin horsehide pocket holster and the Kahr will carry very comfortably in a pair of lightweight wool dress pants with no printing.. It wins over the Shield for my needs. My Shield cost me $399 and I have added Ameriglo sights and an apex sear. The Kahr with night sights & an extra mag (three total) ran me $550 NIB delivered under a NRA instructor program direct buy from Kahr, so I have about the same amount in each gun.

    [​IMG]

    Now just to confuse you more, here is my PM9 laying directly on top of my Kimber Ultra CDP II.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. hardluk1

    hardluk1 member

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    You know the pm9 is a different size of pistol compared to the sheild. The PM9 is a pocket pistol size for many, The sheild is not. Kahrs CW/P pistols are a tiny bit shorter , and lighter and with a metal mag base its the same height as a sheild. The CW9 sells for around 375 here and will feel the same as your pm9. Nothing new to learn , same feel if something larger is needed.
     
  17. jfrey

    jfrey Member

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    Here's my experience: Had a Kahr CW9 and traded it on a G19. Got a Shield and I'm keeping it. Nothing really wrong with the CW9 but the G19 is more reliable. Shield has been 100% since the first round. What else can I say?
     
  18. CSG

    CSG Member

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    The G19 may be the most perfect 9mm ever made. I have its big brother and used to have its little brother. I don't get one because it's bigger than I want as a carry gun but they are simply great shooters.
     
  19. Dean1818

    Dean1818 Member

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    I had a CM9 (same gun as PM9, minus a few features)

    I have a Shield in 40


    CM9

    Likes
    Thin
    Light

    Dislikes
    200 round breakin
    Loading bullet with slide stop
    Trip to kahr to get it right
    Exposed spring on slide stop is a bad design
    For me, an accurate double tap was difficult with the very long trigger and reset
    (The trigger is smooth)

    The kahr is pocketable by some


    The Shield to me is the perfect IWB pistol

    Good trigger and reset
    Thin, light
    Great ergos
    Feels "right" in the hand

    The Shield is my EDC

    The kahr is a good pistol, but to me the Shield is better
     
  20. Al Thompson

    Al Thompson Moderator Staff Member

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    FWIW, my Shield fits in my pocket (cargo pants) just fine. I've also had zero issues in the two years I've had it and accuracy is outstanding! :)
     
  21. OilyPablo

    OilyPablo Member

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    In person the Shield is much larger than the CM9. CM9 is way easier to carry in pocket.

    As others have said, the Kahr is not just a gun you buy and carry - you really must practice with the gun and the trigger. It's not a Glock slap trigger, it takes a smooth disciplined stroke. But one you have it down, it's great.

    I like the trigger, action and feel of my P238 better than both, but it's just a wimpy .380, but it's really is very pocket-able.

    AND I still like my XDs .45 much better than all of the above. Best trigger, most accurate, .45ACP, best ergo feel.
     
  22. Racinbob

    Racinbob Member

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    I had a PM9 and never trusted it. After almost 400 rounds I never had a full magazine go through it without some kind of failure. Back to Kahr it went. All I can say is that their turn around was great. But.....it was even worse when I got it back. I refused to send it back because Kahr refused to cover the shipping to them. It cost me about $60.00 the first time and I wasn't about to do it again. I sold it at a gun show letting the buyer know the entire story. He simply said "I can fix it". Fine. I now have a 9mm Shield and it's been 100%reliable from day one.
     
  23. AOK

    AOK Member

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    I shot both and both are excellent firearms. For me it came down to how I was carrying. Since I was carrying it as a BUG and I wanted it to go in my reaction side front pocket I went with the Kahr. While I could get the Shield in my pocket I couldn't draw it reliably. With that said, if I were going to carry on my belt, I'd probably go with the Shield.
     
  24. Cokeman

    Cokeman Member

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    The Shields have had issues too. Many have had problems returning to battery and not extracting. The dots also fall out of the sights. I have a Shield and a Kahr P380 which has the same trigger as the PM9. I have only shot 100 rounds out of the Shield, but I like the Kahr trigger better. Things might change. I will be keeping both.
     
  25. blitztech

    blitztech Member

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    I have a PM9. Granted I haven't put thousands of rounds thru it but I've never had any failures of any kind, not even thru the break-in period. Its a solid gun and the trigger on it gives me better accuracy than any pistol I've owned previously. The one thing I don't like about it is the stipling on the grip. It eats in to my hands when I'm shooting hot loads and I can see all the marks in my skin afterwards. Its extremely accurate, especially considering that super short barrel. However, I have no experience with the Shield, though at that price I'd buy one up without hesitation
     
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