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Discussion Starter #1
I'm not a firearms designer or engineer, but I have a fair amount of experience with firearms and I've given a LOT of study to the mag drop problems I've experienced with my 40C. I might presume that S&W "experts" have devised perfect solutions to the mag drop problem, but I'm not so sure that has actually come about.



As I see it, the "mag drop" problems result from four causative factors. If these four factors were all addressed by S&W, I believe the mag drop problems would disappear ENTIRELY, FOR EVER!



These are issues contributing to the problem:



1) too-minimal engagement area of the mag catch metal "tab" with the magazine itself - the slightest press on the mag catch button releases the mag - this just happens too darned easily!



2) metal tab of the engagement area of the mag catch with the mag is too soft, causing it to wear easily and cause mag drops (S&W is apparently addressing the hardness issue by anodizing the metal tab)



3) mag catch spring is not as stiff as it would clearly benefit from being - a stiffer spring on the mag catch would require a more conscious, forceful effort to depress the mag catch and make the catch less sensitive (it's too danged sensitive as I see it!!!), and less likely to be inadvertantly engaged! Now really, how difficult would it be to use a somewhat stiffer spring for the mag catch???



4) overly pronounced mag catch thumb pad area - makes it all-too-easy for the shooters's thumb, if held low for whatever reason, to engage the mag catch during recoil and drop the mag when not desired! The mag catch button should not protrude as far as it does - minimizing it's protrusion would, along with the other measures listed above, reduce the likelihood of inadvertant mag drop. Designing a less pronounced mag catch button would be so simple.



I did a little "thumb pad reduction" work on one of my mag catch buttons tonight and so far, it seems to have made a huge difference in preventing inadvertant engagement of the mag catch due to the recoil of the gun pushing the mag catch button against the shooter's thumb.



Some may call the thumb accidentally engaging the mag catch during recoil a "shooter's problem" of incorrect "hold". I call bulls#i! on that, right off the bat. Well designed firearms don't have overly sensitive mag catches which require the user to hold his thumb high, "or else!" During a defensive encounter, the shooter is likely to have a less than "perfect" hold on his weapon and that should NOT cause his mags to drop out.



The four modifications listed above would prevent undesired mag drops no matter how the shooter holds his/her thumb... making for a more "bullet-proof", user-tolerant pistol design - this is what the M&P really NEEDS to achieve widespread success and reliability, in my opinion.



SMITH & WESSON - ARE YOU LISTENING? I sure as heck hope so, because I honestly believe after much careful examination, deliberation, and shooting with my M&P that modification of these four factors would bring your repair expenses (this has got to be very costly!) and reputation loss (even more costly!!!!) for mag drop problems to an immediate and screeching HALT!



I love my M&P 40 Compact, and want nothing but great success for the M&P line... and to achieve such success, I believe these mag catch modifications will eliminate all mag catch problems from here on out.
 

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At the risk of repetition, well said, DHart. I just wish S&W would take my new 9c back and do all of the above. 2 out of 4 times shooting I've had the problem.
 

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Well said, now have you sent this to S&W?
 

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I E-mailed S&W Customer Service about this problem about two months ago, mentioning this Forum. Their response was short and to the point:



#1. If you have a problem with your gun, return it to S&W with a note describing the problem.



#2. They do not base their engineering policies on discussions made in any Forum.

Thank you for contacting S&W Customer Service.



So based on that, don't hold your breath waiting for a response from S&W. It would be nice, however, if they did. I think company policy and liability issues are the limiting factor in not responding.
 

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Arizona Smithshooter said:
I E-mailed S&W Customer Service about this problem about two months ago, mentioning this Forum. Their response was short and to the point:



#1. If you have a problem with your gun, return it to S&W with a note describing the problem.



#2. They do not base their engineering policies on discussions made in any Forum.

Thank you for contacting S&W Customer Service.



So based on that, don't hold your breath waiting for a response from S&W. It would be nice, however, if they did. I think company policy and liability issues are the limiting factor in not responding.


This is disappointing. I'm glad S&W is willing to have us return our guns for repair when we encounter these problems, but I am sorry that they are not interested in consumer input. They seem to feel that this forum, and others, are simply not worthy of valid input on problems that plague owners. I am rethinking my plans to purchase a 40C and and an MP45 because of the problems encountered by so many owners, and S&W's seemingly non-interest in using owner-input in fixing these problems. That is just arrogance on their part. At least I can count on my Glocks to go bang without dropping the magazine at a critical time!
 

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They do pay attn, they just can't tell anyone that they are here.
 

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texagun said:
[quote name='Arizona Smithshooter']#2. They do not base their engineering policies on discussions made in any Forum.

Thank you for contacting S&W Customer Service.


This is disappointing. I'm glad S&W is willing to have us return our guns for repair when we encounter these problems, but I am sorry that they are not interested in consumer input. They seem to feel that this forum, and others, are simply not worthy of valid input on problems that plague owners.



That is just arrogance on their part. [/quote]



Come on now! They said they "do not base engineering policies on discussions made on forums" POLICIES. No where did they say they do not look at forums. No where did they say that they are not "interested" consumer input.



I know with an absolute certainty that some of the M&P design engineers watch this forum. They just cannot respond in the forums. I know they do listen and do care what is being said about their baby.



This is absolutely not "arrogance" it is just not the proper place for them to be discussing design changes. They are a publically traded corporation so discussing such things could be construed as insider information.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Dan... thank you for that input. For the sake of improving the M&P platform that we're all interested in and cheering for, I hope S&W takes to heart the findings of we M&P users and implements changes to eliminate the common problems we're experiencing.
 

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Dan Burwell said:
I know with an absolute certainty that some of the M&P design engineers watch this forum. They just cannot respond in the forums. I know they do listen and do care what is being said about their baby.


That is good news. I hope they are listening.
 

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"Some may call the thumb accidentally engaging the mag catch during recoil a "shooter's problem" of incorrect "hold". I call bulls#i! on that, right off the bat. Well designed firearms don't have overly sensitive mag catches which require the user to hold his thumb high, "or else!" During a defensive encounter, the shooter is likely to have a less than "perfect" hold on his weapon and that should NOT cause his mags to drop out. "



I don't want to be a jerk but I call bulls#i! on you calling bulls#i!. If your thumb is touching the mag release during recoil you ARE holding your thumb too low. No one these days teaches shooting a pistol with a grip holding the thumb that low. Just about any self defence or competition instructor will teach the "strong hand thumb high and support hand thumb forward"



My grip has the strong hand thumb at least 1.5 inches above the mag release.







I agree that the mag release button is a bit big and I'm sorry if you got one that has soft metal, but get a few from Brownells and go to town on it with a dremmel. If you want a stronger mag release spring, buy one and jam it in there, it's just a straight piece of spring steel rod. If you don't like SW engineering, get after it and make it better. Or change your grip and learn how to shoot it.



Thousands of shooters across the nation are shooting this gun in the top level of competition and they love it, their mags aren't falling out on every shot. Thousands of LEO are T+E ing and qualifiing these pistols and carrying them into harms way. Their mags aren't falling out on every shot.



I shot the Texas State IDPA championship with mine and the gun ran like a raped ape.



Sorry if I come across a bit rude but I am tired of hearing about overly senstive mag catches. Fix it and drive on.



Gringop
 

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What gringgop said. I have put well over 15,000 rounds through M&P 40. Only once did a mag drop. That was with gloves on. I took the button down a bit with a sander, never happened again. Wasn't S&Ws falt, it was mine. Greatest fitting weapon I have had. They must have designed it to fit somebody perfect, like myself.
 

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I subscribe to quite a few handgun forums and I don't see this problem mentioned or complained about on any of them except on the M&P Forum. I wonder why that is the case? Could it be that it is peculiar to THIS gun and doesn't have a lot to do with what "grip" you use? If you also shoot Glocks and Sigs and HK's and others with no problem, why are you having a problem with M&P's?

I'm not trying to start a flame war....I'm just wondering why the problem is showing up predominately with the S&W MP???? In my way of thinking, it must be the gun.
 

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texagun said:
I subscribe to quite a few handgun forums and I don't see this problem mentioned or complained about on any of them except on the M&P Forum. I wonder why that is the case? Could it be that it is peculiar to THIS gun and doesn't have a lot to do with what "grip" you use? If you also shoot Glocks and Sigs and HK's and others with no problem, why are you having a problem with M&P's?

I'm not trying to start a flame war....I'm just wondering why the problem is showing up predominately with the S&W MP???? In my way of thinking, it must be the gun.


Yes, at this point in time the mag release problem appears confined to the M&P though it is being addressed by S&W and it is clearly a part/design issue. When I say confined to the M&P, I mean that it comes under the heading of a systemic failure - it keeps getting reported repeatedly in connection with the M&P, and even though the majority of owners (here) have yet to experience a problem, there is no assurance they will not at some point as they put more and more rounds through their guns - that's the part I am not too happy about. Having said that, it is evident that the factory is actively engaged in coming up with a fix so I think it's just a matter of time before it gets resolved (permanently). What I have read here in the last few days shows progress.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
gringop said:
"Some may call the thumb accidentally engaging the mag catch during recoil a "shooter's problem" of incorrect "hold". I call bulls#i! on that, right off the bat. Well designed firearms don't have overly sensitive mag catches which require the user to hold his thumb high, "or else!" During a defensive encounter, the shooter is likely to have a less than "perfect" hold on his weapon and that should NOT cause his mags to drop out. "



I don't want to be a jerk but I call bulls#i! on you calling bulls#i!. If your thumb is touching the mag release during recoil you ARE holding your thumb too low. No one these days teaches shooting a pistol with a grip holding the thumb that low. Just about any self defence or competition instructor will teach the "strong hand thumb high and support hand thumb forward"



My grip has the strong hand thumb at least 1.5 inches above the mag release.







I agree that the mag release button is a bit big and I'm sorry if you got one that has soft metal, but get a few from Brownells and go to town on it with a dremmel. If you want a stronger mag release spring, buy one and jam it in there, it's just a straight piece of spring steel rod. If you don't like SW engineering, get after it and make it better. Or change your grip and learn how to shoot it.



Thousands of shooters across the nation are shooting this gun in the top level of competition and they love it, their mags aren't falling out on every shot. Thousands of LEO are T+E ing and qualifiing these pistols and carrying them into harms way. Their mags aren't falling out on every shot.



I shot the Texas State IDPA championship with mine and the gun ran like a raped ape.



Sorry if I come across a bit rude but I am tired of hearing about overly senstive mag catches. Fix it and drive on.



Gringop


Gringop... yep you did come off a bit rude. No offense though...



If you educated yourself a bit, you'd see that a lot of folks are having mag drop issues. S&W obviously agrees that there is a problem and they seem to be trying to fix it.



As for the hold... guns that are well designed don't force one to subscribe to the popular hold of the moment. Holds vary whether one is shooting one handed, two handed, strong hand, weak hand and during the heat of battle, it's perfectly possible, even likely for a shooter to have a variable hold. Well designed guns don't *require* a unique hold to run reliably. I've got several dozen semi-auto pistols, I shoot three or four days a week and have for years. I have no problem with my hold whatsoever.... and I've NEVER had a mag drop out of ANY other gun I've fired... EVER.



A number of M&P owners are having mag drop problems. If you don't like reading about it, you can always choose to read something else! ;-)~ No one's forcing you to read anything you don't wish to read.f



Simply because you don't have a problem doesn't mean that others don't. If such threads get you all bent out of shape and upset, go out and shoot off some rounds... perhaps that'll make you feel better!
Then go read something you enjoy!



Sorry if I come across a bit rude but I am not interested in reading about what you're tired of that makes you come across a bit rude. You don't like this thread, just move on!
 

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I have to jump in...

After spending an hour or so at the range with a LE sales rep, discussing the problem, pondering grip and whatnot, and him replacing my mag release a second time, he admitted that there was a problem, and they were addressing it. If it were simply someone's thumb bumping the mag release, it would be a different scenario, and smith would tell us to go fly a kite. When my 40c started dropping mags the first time, I took it to 4 (count 'em, 4) people that I did not know on the range and asked them to slowly run a mag through my pistol. All 4 of them had repeated mag drop issues (one was a left handed shooter)



Sorry man, but the issue is there. Stick your head in the sand if you wish, but that won't make it go away.



Justin
 

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We have a good discussion going on here.

And we will have disagreeements, but let's not make it personal.
 

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I consider DHart and HeedJSU's responses to Grinop very appropriate. Anyone at this point who still attributes the falling mag problem to shooter error, i.e., grip is essentially in denial. There has been enough information posted at this site and subsequently validated by the factory to suggest otherwise. S&W has acknolwedged there is a problem and it is part/design related.
 

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Hmmm. After reading the responses, I can see that I did not communicate what I intended to. And I'm sorry for the tone I used, it was not very professional or helpful to the discussion.



I do understand that there have been many instances of mag drop issues and I hope that SW gets a permanant fix out quick. I'm sure it is a very frustrating problem when it is happening to your gun.



What I should have done is expressed my opinion re. the grip issue in a clear and non-judgemental manner and offered it as helpful advice. I probably allowed workday frustrations to influence me and I will work on doing better in the future.



That being said, it is clear that I have a different mindset for solving gun problems than other folks. I like to get inside em and tweak and work on them till I get them to my liking. Others want the factory to get it right the first time. Neither way is the "one true way" and everyone must follow their own path.



Happy shooting and let's all stay safe.



Gringop
 

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gringop said:
Hmmm. After reading the responses, I can see that I did not communicate what I intended to. And I'm sorry for the tone I used, it was not very professional or helpful to the discussion.



I do understand that there have been many instances of mag drop issues and I hope that SW gets a permanant fix out quick. I'm sure it is a very frustrating problem when it is happening to your gun.



What I should have done is expressed my opinion re. the grip issue in a clear and non-judgemental manner and offered it as helpful advice. I probably allowed workday frustrations to influence me and I will work on doing better in the future.



That being said, it is clear that I have a different mindset for solving gun problems than other folks. I like to get inside em and tweak and work on them till I get them to my liking. Others want the factory to get it right the first time. Neither way is the "one true way" and everyone must follow their own path.



Happy shooting and let's all stay safe.



Gringop






It's all good gringo. Nice come-back. Shows class.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
gringo... thanks for checking back in... I appreciate your suggestions. And I do understand your approach and totally agree with you about getting into your guns and tweaking them... I do that with pretty much every gun I buy! (It all started with modifying my 1911's!) I've tweaked all of my Glocks as well.



As for the M&P, I did reduce the extension on the mag release thumb pad to make it less susceptible to inadvertant mag drops during carry, handling, shooting, whatever, and that does seem to have helped! And if I had an easy source for replacing the spring steel rod that tensions the mag catch with a heavier one - and knew what to get and could fit it in the gun... I would do that myself too! If you can offer any suggestions on what to get and where to get it, I'd appreciate that very much.



In spite efforts on the user's part to stop the mag drop problem, I'd still like to see S&W make improvements in these areas so that none of us would have to feel compelled to tear into the guns on our own to fix this particular issue. I do believe that the steps I mentioned would make these mag drop problems vaporize for good! I'd still like to tear into mine and do a little action polishing, though! At 1000 rounds the trigger on my M&P is really very nice, but if I can make it even sweeter, great! I do believe there is light, somewhere, hopefully not too far distant, at the end of "mag drop" tunnel !
 
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