Saturday, December 13, 2008

Another reason to hate me: new S&W M&P 9

I lucked into quite a fortuitous trade this week. One of my friends had a .300 Whisper AR upper that he wasn't planning to use, so he traded it to a local dealer for the only thing that was of remote interest to him: an Mn'P 9mm cop gun. The cop guns come with three mags and don't have the magazine safety in 'em. 

So, he got rid of an upper he didn't really want for a pistol he didn't really want, and came into the shop with it. He knew I had a Glock 19, because I traded my Glock 30 to him to get that 19. He also knew that I was looking to get an MnP to solve some of the issues I was having with my 19. He asked what I had to trade for it, and I told him the truth: right now the only thing I have to trade is my 19. He thought about it for a moment, and asked if I wanted to trade it straight up, the MnP with three magazines for the G19 and 3 magazines.  I really like the G19, so it wasn't necessarily an easy choice to make, but I decided to do it. I know, it was obvious, but I made the right choice.

ATS started back with Saturday hours today, but arrangements were made for Matt and Paul to work. That is as it should be: I had a new, unfired firearm, and that just can't be allowed to stand. They both agreed that it was something that had to happen. I only had a hundred rounds to test it with, but I hadda use what I had.

I don't know if the MnP is more accurate than my G19, but I do know that I shoot it better. I shot noticeably tighter groups with it, and I do know why that is: the 17 round magazines of the MnP mean that the grip is a bit longer, and my hand fits it better. Because of the sheer bodacious size of my giant bear paw hands, manipulating reloads was a bit of a job with the G19. The magazines occasionally dragged on the bottom of my hand. That grip simply wasn't made for me. Additionally, I overrode the slide release fairly regularly, so I didn't always have the slide lock back. That's all attributable to trying to run the premier small carry gun when it doesn't fit quite right. 

What I found out today was that the MnP is a better platform for my physical attributes. In a lot of ways, the MnP is a refining of the Glock. Its not necessarily the G19's equal, but it has couple of features that are key. Other than having a grip frame that fits my hand better, it also has a short beavertail tang. The Glock has been known to cut the back of my hand because I have so much beef in the back of my hand and I take the highest grip I can. The MnP allows me to get up into the gun, but still protects me from blood loss. Bottom line: I'm very well pleased with the MnP in most areas: a grip that fits me better, no bleeding, and good accuracy.

I'm not sold completely on the sights. They're either Novaks, or a Novak design. The sight picture is fine, but the wedge shape means that they can't be used as a way to rack the gun. They're also not night sights, and that's going to have to change. If I can get the 10-8 sights with tritium, I think that's what I want to do. I have to give props to SnW, though, because the sights on my new kid were well regulated on elevation, and dead on for windage. 

The other area that the MnP falls short of the Glock is in the trigger. The sear break is a little creepy, but different from the Glock. The reset, though, isn't as good. If I can find somebody who can fix that up, and make the reset more like the Glock in terms of a positive "snap", that will go a long way to improve the MnP. As it is now, its a feature that I tolerate and may have to get used to. Of course, I have 100 rounds through my MnP; my Glock had 2200.

Does this mean I'm done with the Glock? Absolutely not! Glocks are still among the handful of real combat guns that have just about everything: adequate triggers, good accuracy, simple manipulation, and a legitimate 100,000 round service life. I think I may end up get a Glock 17 next, but another G19 is definitely in my future as well. 

Much is said about how "Glocks are uncomfortable", and "I just don't like the way they feel". I recently heard a statement from one of the LF forum members that answers those questions directly: "Unless its a female, I don't make choices based on feelings".  What the MnP and Glock both have is that once you shoot one and make it run, you kinda turn it in your hand and stare at it with your eyes bugged out a little, while saying "Where has this been all my life?"


DirtCrashr said...

I'm gonna have to check out the M&P Smith, but I've also never shot a Glock...

Haji said...

In that case, you're going to need an M&P AND a Glock 19. :D