Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by Dustbowl, Nov 22, 2019.
Ive only ever seen one in person.....shoulda bought it.
After VERY short service lives. All less than 5 years.
If I was the least bit interested in buying hundreds of dollars of aftermarket parts, to give a new handgun all the things the factory couldn't be bothered to - good trigger, accuracy ect - I'd buy a Kimber.
My S&W 4506-1 and 4566 are so superior to the m&p in accuracy and reliability that I am embarrased for the current company posing as s&w.
And I look forward to a gun company making some nice, updated 3rd gen pistols.
It appears that the two of you have only had limited use with the M&P pistols.
The M&P has seen upgrades over the years, the latest is the M2.0 which did outstanding in the HMS Pistol testing.
If the old S&W autos were so superior, why did they quit making them?
- Cost and profit potential (The BIG reason). Let's say a 5903 TSW Melonite costs $500 to make/distribute and sells for $700. That's $200 for S&W. A 9mm M&P costs $200 to make and sells for $500. That's $300 for S&W and the gun costs less for the customer. Yay! Everybody wins! [numbers are estimates to show concept of increased profit and lower cost]
- Not trendy (no slick magazine ads, puffy chest YouTube operators, and the shooting public that laps it all up). You have 35 years of the shooting public being told the polystriker gun is "da bomb". Hard to overcome an ingrained externally driven bias that is confirmed daily by essentially all media inputs.
- I have handled and shot both the M&P 1.0 and 2.0 and found them severely wanting in terms of safety, trigger quality and handling.
But there’s something about the older smith autos I love. A 39 is my winter go to carry and I’ve wanted to get into a 3913/14 or chiefs special. A couple guys I know have the 1006 and the like and they are an awesome gun as well. I’m just wondering if there could ever be a market to produce new parts, frames and slides.
Others have brought up the fact you’d need sufficient interest. But with Brownells now carrying aftermarket Hi-Power parts I’m in the optimist platform that this could spread to other popular makes and models.
You are talking about the same company that is rerunning the names of venerable firearms of the past ; pasting them on to unworthy new products - "Victory" & "Chiefs Special" for example.
Seems to me that S&W has little respect for it's own past.
The problem is not the polystrikers. The problem is that there are many steel-framed, hammer-fired pistols that are materially superior to the S&W design. Forget taking market share from Glock or cannibalizing the M&P... they couldn't take market share from CZ or 1911's. The people who want the benefits of a steel-framed, hammer-fired pistol already have better options.
I'd love for Smith to get back into the steel-frame, hammer-fired game... with a new design that does not work at cross-purposes to all the things we've learned about the most effective way to hold pistols over the past 30 years.
You have failed to realize that the S&W Gen3 autos were discounted several years before the first M&P hit the market.
There have been several autos, by other companies that came to market over the years that have also gone by the wayside.
Now don’t get me wrong, I liked some of the old S&W autos, but they just didn’t meet the demands of the market that were buying.
My department always bought S&W handguns. They issued S&W revolvers as far back as I can remember. When they went to autos they went with S&W.
When I came on they were issuing the S&W 4046 DAO.
Almost every Police agency had gone to some type of DAO simi-auto when they went from revolvers to autos. I guess you can say that they thought that DAO pistols were the best bet. This is sometimes referred to as transition guns. It was easier to train revolver guys to shoot autos if they had basically the same type of triggers.
This was the targeted sales for S&W autos.
When Police agency’s starting getting away from DAO handguns, S&W had very little to offer.
But there are those that can’t seem to move forward. Some think that revolvers are better then autos.
Oh! I also love my revolvers and just bought a sweet model 15 the other week.
(Sorry for the scale difference).
Look at some specific points:
Look at how far down the grip the trigger guard extends. Now consider that the junction between the trigger guard and the grip marks the highest point that the front of the weak hand can get contact on the gun. Notice how the CZ's triggerguard is "undercut" to give the weak hand extra space to get higher. Compare that to the S&W's downward-swooping triggerguard (taken almost directly from their revolvers... but without the excellent clearance behind the triggerguard of S&W revo's).... the S&W trigger guard pushes the weak hand down the grip quite a bit. Given our modern understanding that a high grip with the weak hand is one of the big keys to effective recoil control for rapid shooting, that's a big design weakness for the S&W.
Similarly, compare the design parameter that defines how high the strong hand can get - the beavertail. Again, note the lengths that the modern design goes to allow the web of the strong hand high up the backstrap and in relation to the bore. Note how much lower the S&W is - it's not quite as dramatic as the triggerguard comparison, but this is also a big design loss for the S&W pattern.
This tracks the overall height-above-bore. Look at the vertical separation between the trigger pin on both guns and their respective barrel centerlines. On my screen, they're virtually identical... despite the massive scale difference of the pictures! If they were pictured at the same scale, then - just as in real life - the S&W has a much higher bore relative to really everything grab-able during shooting.
Notice the safety location. While a lot of the shooting world has decided that external manual safeties aren't something they want, those who do want them now widely agree that a frame-mounted DTF safety is the right way to do it. This makes taking the safety off a matter of grip, rather than some affirmative action that must be remembered.
Now, none of this stuff matters if you're just poking holes in paper in slow fire at a square range. But the population of people who are buying new-manufacture steel-framed guns are generally doing it for reasons of shooting performance. As I wrote before, the design elements of the S&W (particularly what I mentioned above) really make it sub-optimal for anyone doing time-pressured shooting. If S&W wanted to get back into the steel-frame game, they'd need to raise their game significantly. Just firing up the old tooling and making more of the 3rd gen wouldn't make any sense at all.
Beretta just lost their contract last year. Give it a couple years and I could see the 92 leaving the production line. Much like the BHP did after the Brits went to Glock. I have no clue if Sig still holds contracts for their P226's, etc. ????
I got out of 3rd gens when the money was to good to pass up on my 10mm's. A 645 was my first handgun that I purchased, so I will always have a soft spot for them. But have moved on to better performing guns.
Smith and Wesson made 539 & 559 - blue steel, 639 & 659 - stainless steel autos back in the mid 80’s. They were good guns. I have a 539, it is a neat gun but it hit the market during the wonder 9 craze and there was just too much competition for this line to sell good. These and the 3rd generation autos just didn’t stand the test of time. The Glocks changed everything in the simi-auto pistol market. I don’t see S&W autos being what the 1911 is, they will just be niche pistols at most.
Im aware. The post I was replying to was specific to the 39 and 59. Its all good.
I would love to find a 639 (without the goofy adj. sights) someday!
Sadly, I too see the 92 being dropped within 2 years. I think the only thing keeping it going now is the poor sales of the APX and PX. Better stock up on spare parts now if you are so inclined.
I really dont know how SIG is able to continue making a profit on their legacy metal platforms, though the tooling costs are likely fully amortized and they do charge a premium for them.
Love the 645!
They will have to pry mine from my cold, dead fingers. That said, no way I would want to carry one on the daily!
They're going pretty hard on the X version, though. Finally recognizing that alloy-frames are sort of a no-mans land - steel is better for shooting, plastic is better for carrying.
BTW, that's an interesting remark about alloy frames, ATLDave. It would not have occurred to me. Things like that are a big part of why I come here.
I carried a M9 in the Corps. It was a good gun but never gave me a warm fuzzy.
A better comparison would be a Performance Center 5906 or even a PPC 9 to the Shadow II.
As did the High Standard HDM.
Adopted by the OSS in WWII and still in the inventory is quite a lifespan..
OK, here's a PC 5906 PCC.
Beautiful gun. Probably shoots cloverleafs at 50 yards. All the same problems ID'ed above. Bad fundamental format of the frame.
Here's a basic CZ-75.
Still better. It's missing a bunch of stuff that the Shadow 2 has, such as forestrap checkering and a more aggressive grip countour at the top to shorten trigger reach... but it was a better-designed gun in 1975 than the S&W's were.
And here's the gun that drove CZ to make those Shadow 2 changes:
Again, key design differences between this and the S&W that allow more effective use of the gun for "modern," practical, speed-involved shooting. The PPC is probably a little more mechanically accurate, but these are pretty darn accurate, too.
The frame format is the problem with the S&W... not add-on features or lack thereof. Of course they could checker the frontstrap and backstrap... but the grip would still force both hands lower than the current competitors in steel-framed world.
Could S&W do a complete re-design and bring something to market that competes on an even field? Absolutely. No rocket science required. But this thread is about the old pattern being used. The pattern itself is sub-optimal for the way guns are shot today.
It's clear that ATLDave doesn't like the S&W frame design and thats OK, but for many of us it works just fine, or superior to "modern" platforms like the supposedly universal G19.
I take shooters to the range and we fire all of their cool striker guns, then they fire my 3914 and wonder why they can't buy a new one of those.
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