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Recent acquisition - Smith & Wesson M&P 9L (56k, big pics, eat a sammich)


TGO David

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Recently sold my XD Tactical 9mm to a friend. Guns & Leather happened to have one of these in stock, so it came home with me. :)

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Thoughts:

We have only had it out to the range once. It suffered several classic stovepipe failures to eject while my wife was shooting it and one failure to feed (double feed) while I was shooting it. I hope that the FTE were due to her "limp wristing" the gun but I have a bad feeling that the weapon will be going back to Smith & Wesson for some tuning if the problem persists.

I'm going to detail strip and clean it soon and properly lube the extractor channel to see if that remedies the problems. There are a lot of threads on the MP-Pistols forum that show other people having these problems with their M&Ps lately as well. Some have fixed it themselves with the prescription outlined above. Others had to return their weapons for service.

It wouldn't be the first time I've had to return a new M&P to Smith. :)

Ergonomics, Shooting, Etc.

The ergonomics of the M&P are just head and shoulders above the Glock and XDs that I've owned. Just holding it reminded me immediately of why I had chosen the M&P in the past. Having owned a 9c, a 40c and a 40 all at the same time once before, I am still a big fan of the M&P's ergos and keep rooting for Smith to get them running right out of the gate.

The 9L balances very well and the extended slide and barrel add just enough heft to the front-end to make it a really smooth shooter. No complaints from me here.

The gun really needs better sights so I'll be ordering a fiber optic front and a 10-8 Performance rear sight soon. I really like Hilton Yam's 10-8 sight and consider it an almost essential upgrade to any M&P automatic. I've written about this sight here in the past.

The trigger on this particular M&P is really mushy. The reset is barely perceptible and absolutely nothing like the firm, definitive click of my Glock 19. I really wish it had a more pronounced, shorter reset. I found myself short-stroking the trigger on more than one occasion during our range session. I may replace the sear with the new S&W Performance Center sear and see if that helps any. I'm told it is basically a drop-in version of what Dan Burwell and other gunsmiths do as trigger jobs for these guns, albeit in a somewhat mass produced form. Odds are that this weapon will never see any sort of carry duty and just be a range toy / gamer gun, so I have no issues with modifying the trigger.

All in all, I'm pretty happy with the gun. I just need to resolve the FTE / FTF problems and replace the sights. Then it will be good to go.

Still not sold on the M&P as a carry gun based on my personal experiences, but there are hundreds of folks out there who do carry them and have never had these sort of problems.

:)

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Guest db99wj

Hmm. Hate to hear that you are getting the FTE's. Keep us posted once you get it cleaned and some more rounds through it.

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Guest HunterH

My new M&P is the standard .40 and not the L. David and I got to shoot it some at Owl Hollow last weekend and I absolutly love mine. Fast and exceptionally accurate. David had me work some of drills with it and it performed better than I expected. I even saw a big grin on his face after he used it for several quick groups. I was going to get a G23 or G19, but I think that I am really happy with this M&P to the point that I can hold off on any new purchases. The size is more manageable than I figured for carry and has been perfect with no problems after 600 rounds so far. Way to go S&W. Thank you for restoring my faith.

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Guest EasilyObsessed

Sucks that you are already having some problems :P

That being said, good choice and great lookin' gun! I am assuming it will be accompanying you to the next Mid TN meet? If so, id like to pump a couple magazines through it if you dont mind :mad:

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  • Administrator
Very nice. Mind if I ask what you paid? :mad:

It was like $600 out the door with tax and TICS. I lucked into this one, I think. I still haven't seen any on Gunbroker or any of the other local shops. This one came from Guns & Leather on a trip up to Kentucky last week. I think they had a Pro model for slightly more.

The more of those I see, especially those pictures, really like what S&W put together. The malfunctions are worrysome, but, Smith will make it right.

Yeah, they will make it right. It's sometimes a question of how many trips it has to make back to them though. One guy has a 4-inch 9mm and he has had to send it back three times now for FTEs.

Sucks that you are already having some problems :)

That being said, good choice and great lookin' gun! I am assuming it will be accompanying you to the next Mid TN meet? If so, id like to pump a couple magazines through it if you dont mind :P

It will be with us unless I get some more range time and it keeps jamming up. Then it will be up to S&W as to whether I have it back by the 19th. :)

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Guest Todd@CIS

The M&P has the potential to be one hell of a pistol, but damn, S&W needs to get these nagging bugs worked out.

David...this is your second M&P with issues isn't it?

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Guest Verbal Kint

David...this is your second M&P with issues isn't it?

It wouldn't be the first time I've had to return a new M&P to Smith. :mad:

Yep, his first M&P had issues as well. :-\

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Guest HunterH

Ack!! I keep hearing all these issue with other folk's M&Ps. It shakes my confidence in my M&P as a carry weapon. Mine has been flawless so far, but hearing about the problems everyone else is having is making me second guess my gun. ARe my fears justified or can I have confidence based on its performance to date?

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  • Administrator
The M&P has the potential to be one hell of a pistol, but damn, S&W needs to get these nagging bugs worked out.

David...this is your second M&P with issues isn't it?

My "service" size M&P 40 ran like a champ all the time. My 40c and my 9c had problems. The 40c dropped mags like crazy but S&W installed a revised mag catch and that fixed it. The 9c locked back prematurely a good 50% of the time with 2-3 rounds left in the magazine each time. A revised, heavier weight slide release spring fixed that one.

For some reason neither my Glocks or my XDs have had any problems out of the box. They have all run very well and very reliably with any ammo that I've fed them.

Maybe this M&P just needs to be "broken in" a little. I'm going to put a few more hundred through it before deciding whether it needs to go back to the mothership for repairs. :mad:

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  • Administrator
Ack!! I keep hearing all these issue with other folk's M&Ps. It shakes my confidence in my M&P as a carry weapon. Mine has been flawless so far, but hearing about the problems everyone else is having is making me second guess my gun. ARe my fears justified or can I have confidence based on its performance to date?

I bet your M&P will give you flawless performance until the cows come home. I just have weird luck with them. :mad:

By the way, Todd Louis Green (a familiar name to some folks from a lot of different forums) is doing a serious torture test with his M&P 9mm. He's had some interesting issues but the gun has been running very well for him for twenty thousand (20,000!!!) rounds to date.

You can read his blog here: http://pistol-training.com/archives/299

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Guest clutepc

I have the M&P Compact 40 and I had a few issues when I first got it but the problem was related to my grip.

Once I figured out that issue I haven't had an issue since.

I shoot it on a regular basis even for IDPA, not the best choice for that but I want to make sure I can depend on my carry weapon.

I won't carry anything else because the gun has been flawless,

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How many rounds through it so far?

I've got a compact 9 and it's only failed to lock the slide back once but I only have about 100 rounds through it so far. The first one I looked at in the store had weird rings down the barrel. They also sent one 12 round magazine and one 10 round. they did swap the 10 round one back out. Just wondering, what kind of finish is on your magazines? The two that came with it originally had a nice black chrome type finish, the magazine I got back was painted.

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Ack!! I keep hearing all these issue with other folk's M&Ps. It shakes my confidence in my M&P as a carry weapon. Mine has been flawless so far, but hearing about the problems everyone else is having is making me second guess my gun. ARe my fears justified or can I have confidence based on its performance to date?
I have 2. No problems at all
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Hate to hear your having problems out of it. If you need to send it back, we can do it for you since you got it here and we'll pay the shipping. However, I would recommend that you bring it up and let Jeff Walle look at em. I'd imagine he'd be able to remedy it without much trouble. In my experience, when you send them back to S&W they will unsupport the barrel to get it to work correctly.

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Thanks, Daniel. I'm going to run it a bit longer and see what comes of these problems. Sometimes these guns are just a little "stiff" out of the box and need some breaking in. If the problems persist after, say, 500 rounds I will definitely send it to either S&W or let Jeff look at it for me. :mad:

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Guest HunterH

I put another 200 rounds through my M&P 40 and I love it more with every shot. You guys will likely see me sporting an M&P shirt at the next meet as I am that much in love with this thing. I had no idea I would love it so much. The only issue is the mag that makes a clink noise as one of the rounds is loose when I fill her up. I am interested to see if the problem continues when I get the 2 rebate mags sometime soon. If not, I may call customer service to ask about it. Not a big issue. What a gun!! Hope your 9L gets to working better David.

Never took myself for a S&W guy. I love my Glock an XD. This M&P is equal to or better then them both at this point.

Hope everyone has a happy 4th!! God bless America and God Bless our Troops!!!

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  • 3 weeks later...
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I took the 9L out to the local indoor shooting range last night and ran about 100 rounds through it again. Had one failure to eject (stovepipe) and discovered that the front sight is off to the left by about 1/16" to 1/8". This is causing hits to strike to the right of POA. How far to the right of course depends on how far away the target is from the shooting position.

I'll drift the front sight closer to the center position this weekend with a nylon punch. Sights will eventually be replaced with Ameriglo / Bowie Tactical Concepts night sights.

Also decided to run with the LARGE grip back strap as it more closely mimics the handfull of firearm that I get from my Glock 19. Some may think that's a step backward but it actually helps me so go piss up a burning rope. ;)

I need to take and post some new photos as I've made a rather subtle but cool change to the appearance of the firearm by using OEM Smith & Wesson grip inserts in Flat Dark Earth color.

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