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Review: M&P Shield Plus 9mm

1725 Views 17 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  Tactically Fat
I know I don't post here much any more... But here's a short review fer ya's.

Sorry folks, no photos. It's a Shield Plus 9mm. Not like I was shooting a Chrome Tiger Stripe Desert Eagle in .429 DE


No thumb safety, standard factory 3-dot sights, not optics ready. 1x 10rd mag without pinky extension, 1x 13rd mag with the "sleeve" / gap cover. Standard stuff.

Took it home with the intent of grabbing my range back and heading to Point Blank to shoot it. The original intent was to run it as-is right out of the box without doing any kind of inspection / cleaning / lubricating. I decided that may not have been the best idea. So off to the shop. Basically pristine inside and out - save for evidence of test-firing at the factory. Breech face had brass scars on it as did the little central "spine" on the underside of the slide. No big deal.

While it was apart, I did add some Slip 2000 to the frame rails, to the slide rails (probably overkill), and I rubbed a film over the little central spine on the underside of the slide. Some of the brass residue from the factory test firing did come off on my applicator. Not sure if that counted as cleaning or not - but I didn't do anything else.

Reassembled the gun, racked the slide rapidly about 15 times / worked the trigger those times, wiped off excess lubrication, then into a soft case, then into the range bag.

Ammo used: 150 rds of 115gr Remington UMC + 50 rds 147gr Federal HiShok JHP. (That's 200 total rounds for those of you from Putnam County)

Targets: Probably about 13" x 20" tear-off paper targets with 6 2" to 2.5" squares evenly spaced upon it. I tried to find the item - but couldn't.

Accuracy: With this gun, and if I take my time, I can put all rounds from a mag into a target square at 3 to 5 yards. I can "come close" to all rounds from a mag at 7 yards. Again - slow fire. Speeding things up a tad, I'd get some vertical stringing outside of the little square.

Note: for me, the front sight post completely obscured the target square at 7 yards.

I had no problem hanging on to the gun, slow fire, with the flush-fit 10rd mag. I have medium large hands. I would not want to utilize this magazine, without at least a pinky extension, as a carry magazine. As a backup/spare? Maybe. But probably not. I have 4x 13rd mags inbound...

This gun fed, fired, and extracted every round without issue. This is a welcomed change from my Shield 1.0. My 1.0 does NOT like those 147gr HiShock JHPs. Doesn't like them at all - even after polishing the feed ramp a bit. Ejection was strong - often flinging them back and to the right - as opposed to just to the right. I suspect that the rearward vector of the empties will probably change as springs wear.

Impressions: The grip on the gun is fantastic. I think it's slightly toned down M&P 2.0 texture. And the 2.0 texture is absolutely fantastic. It is WAY better than the grip texture (or lack thereof) of my Shield 1.0.

The ever so slight increase in grip circumference of the Plus is also a very welcomed change over the 1.0. Fills the hand better / better ergonomics. And for me, this means a much more positive and less fatiguing grip. 200 rounds in 30 mins of range time isn't necessarily a whole lot, but when it's all out of a small gun like this - hand fatigue is gonna set in. And it did by the end - but still not bad.

Trigger: The Plus' flat-faced trigger is pretty good. This is still a striker-fired gun, mind you. It's an improvement in FEEL over the 1.0 that I'm used to. And I'm a guy who thinks the 1.0 trigger is just fine for what it is. I don't have a trigger pull gauge, but the Plus feels like a lighter trigger vs the 1.0 - but that may be due to trigger ergonomics vs actual weight.

With another range trip (at some point...sigh) and barring some unforseen issue/s - this gun will become my main carry gun. I do plan on upgrading the sights. I will probably go with a blacked out rear and probably a green or orange dot up front.
1 - 18 of 18 Posts

· Man, I'm Pretty
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32,633 Posts
I like my Shield Plus A LOT.

Regards,
Happyguy :)
 

· A swamp dude
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12,589 Posts
Sounds like a very nice pistol on most counts. For someone looking for a pistol like the Shield with a robust feeling/operating manual safety, this gun‘s safety lever seems less than ‘user friendly’. Anyone care to comment other than ‘who wants a manual safety?.

Air gun Revolver Trigger Gun barrel Gun accessory
 

· Man, I'm Pretty
Joined
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32,633 Posts
Sounds like a very nice pistol on most counts. For someone looking for a pistol like the Shield with a robust feeling/operating manual safety, this gun‘s safety lever seems less than ‘user friendly’. Anyone care to comment other than ‘who wants a manual safety?.

View attachment 1002143
Mine has the manual safety but I keep it off when carrying it. I use it for administrative loading and unloading.

If someone ever makes a replacement with a proper paddle I will buy it in a New York minute.

Regards,
Happyguy :)
 

· Premium Member
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2,294 Posts
Mine has the manual safety but I keep it off when carrying it. I use it for administrative loading and unloading.

If someone ever makes a replacement with a proper paddle I will buy it in a New York minute.

Regards,
Happyguy :)
I agree about the function of the safety, it's small. I took some nail polish and colored the frame behind the lever so I can see when it's not engaged. I too keep it off when holstered just use it for loading and unloading, holstering and unholstering.
 

· Georgia gal
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3,930 Posts
Sounds like a very nice pistol on most counts. For someone looking for a pistol like the Shield with a robust feeling/operating manual safety, this gun‘s safety lever seems less than ‘user friendly’. Anyone care to comment other than ‘who wants a manual safety?.

View attachment 1002143

I actually prefer the Shield's type of thumb safety and wish my 9C had the same type.

I've bought two Shield 2.0 and three (yes; gave my grandson one and have more turning 21 next year) Shield Plus, and my tiny Bodyguard .380 has that type of safety, so that makes six I own or have owned. The BG's safety is a little more difficult to use just because the pistol is so tiny. It is DAO hammer-fired with a heavy trigger pull so I'd be okay not even using its thumb safety. I have to bend my thumb a little to swipe it off. I don't have to do that for the Shields.

The safeties on four of my Shields are a breeze to swipe off with the side of my thumb. They very firmly click on or off, but it is a natural and easy movement to swipe them off. I don't have to change my grip to do so and I love them.

On the last one I bought, the safety is a little too firm for me, though. It has loosened up a little. If it doesn't loosen up more with use, I might even send it back for adjustment. It's the exception to the other five. It's the stiffness on that one, not the type of safety. I do like to use a thumb safety on my striker-fired pistols.

If the only Shield I'd used was the last one, I might not like that type of safety, either. But in my experience they are great as all my others are. I'd say try it before you buy and don't pick one if it's excessively firm. My others are more natural to swipe off than the paddle kind are. Practice it a few times and you might really like that type.

One more very unusual thing about the last one: The grip texture was much more aggressive than even my Shield 2.0s. I think it must have been molded on a brand new mold. It felt like little needles! I never modify my guns but I "modified" its grip with one of those cheap little emery boards for smoothing fingernails. I just went over the grip once very LIGHTLY and now it's just right. Took all of a minute. (I found a deal too good to pass up and ordered that one online. I didn't think it was enough to refuse the sale.)

Try the Shield's safety several times with the side of your thumb before you dismiss it too quickly.
 

· Registered
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91 Posts
I tried the safety on the display model and thought it was too stiff and small. It was kind of difficult to engage and disengage. I thought of getting one without but changed my mind at the last minute and got one with the safety. I’m glad I did, though. The one on mine was also very stiff and hard to engage, but the more I practiced with it, the looser and easier it got. Now, it’s still not as easy to use as the thumb safeties on my 1911’s and SW 3913, but it’s not that bad anymore.
 

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71 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Update:

Again no pics. Sorry. You'll be ok, though. I promise.

Put another 150 or so rounds through it last Wednesday. This time I was able to use 4x more 13rd mags that I'd purchased online and sneaked into the safe before my roommate noticed.

Anyhow, this next 150 round range session included 49 whole rounds of Wolf steel ammo. Why 49 rounds? Because I dropped one when I was getting ready and didn't find it until I'd gotten back. Not much of a story, eh?

To make a short story longer: Still ZERO issues feeding, firing, or extracting.

There was some drama, however. When I was at home and loading the new mags - they were a royal PITA to load. Even with an UpLula.
And I may have 1 mag that doesn't like steel-cased ammo. Much like on some of the Magpul Glock mags I have, the rounds hung up inside the mag. I could hear a major case rattle inside the mag as I was putting them in the range bag. Something wasn't right.

So I thumbed out the rounds - and only like 11 came out - very very easily. Then there wasn't a follower doing its job and following. So I tapped the mag on the safe and WHAM - two cartridges came flying out at right around 1000fps. (Stated velocity out of their test barrels are 1150 fps, but I figured since there was no barrel involved that my velocities were a tick slower). Listen y'all - I don't wear glasses any more. I'm VERY thankful that I kept the muzzle of the mag pointed in a safe direction. I found one of them and reloaded into the mag. There weren't any more hangups past that. Literally or figuratively.

I did some strong hand and weak hand only shooting, too. It availed itself nicely. I'm sure it's because I'm concentrating so much harder when shooting 1 handed - but I was more accurate at 7 yards.

One minor niggle: I really wish the fit between the mag sleeve and the front strap was a little better. It's a minor pinch point.
 
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