"We're sorry. Do you have a military or police contract gun that is giving you trouble?"
Thread: Failure mode on a S&W M&P 45
I'm a lefty (not to be confused with leftist) and own a Smith and Wesson M&P 45.
I've reversed the magazine release so I can eject the magazine using my left hands thumb.
Other than that the pistol is stock setup from the factory. The mag release button is designed to be changed from left to right so I'm not doing anything out of the ordinary there.
I recently took a couple of pistol classes at the local range and our instructor had us short load the magazines (no more than 3 or 4 rounds, and mix in some dummy rounds too) so we would have plenty of experience with reloading on the move and clearing malfunctions on the move.
Here's the thing though, if you only put 3-4 rounds in the magazine for the M&P 45 the mag follower is right in front of the two notches that the magazine release (or in this case retention) slide is.
What happened to me during the class was I had one in the pipe and inserted a short loaded magazine and took my shot. Clunk, the magazine fell out onto the floor. Quick reload with another magazine, rack and fire, clunk. At this point we stopped the drill and made safe the pistol and tried to figure out what the hell was going on.
One time is not putting the magazine in hard enough, twice well that's a problem.
So looking at the follower we surmised that the catch wasn't fully seating and the blast from the shot being fired was enough to dislodge the magazine from the well.
My workaround was to put 5 rounds in the magazines, once the catch seated properly when it got to 3-4 rounds it didn't matter.
This is a bit of an anomalous situation, because who puts 3-4 rounds in a magazine and loads it? Most of us carry with a full magazine I would think. But lets say you had an issue and had to drop a magazine with 3-4 rounds in it but found out you were now out of bullets and needed to "stay in the game" and loaded that 3-4 round magazine, well one shot and you'd be a sitting duck.
I wrote to S&W about this and their suggestion was to send the pistol to them. I told them I wasn't about to send the pistol to them when they could replicate the problem in their own labs. "Put 3-4 rounds in a magazine and look where the follower is" "Oh sorry sir, we aren't allowed ammo in the lab" OK "So take 3-4 dummy rounds or snap caps and put them in a magazine and look where the follower is" "Oh sorry sir, we aren't allowed dummy rounds either" I was getting frustrated and said "How can you, being a firearms manufacturer not be allowed to put ammunition into pistols?" "Oh sir, the gunsmiths are the only ones that can put real ammo into the pistols" I said "Ok then, so why don't you go down to the gunsmiths and ask THEM if they would be so kind as to put 3-4 dummy rounds into a magazine and show you where the follower is"
Bottom line is S&W couldn't care less about this. I followed up with an email asking for them to at least look into it and said If I don't hear back from you I'm going to mention this on the gun boards I frequent. Still nothing.
I may have to take the dremel tool to my mag follower, but I'd really have liked S&W to step up and at least show some interest in what I was telling them.
So for you M&P owners out there (esp ones that have reversed the mag release) try it out for yourself and see if it happens to you, I suspect it will.
"We're sorry. Do you have a military or police contract gun that is giving you trouble?"
I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.
If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?
There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.
No I didn't get that, I got the "send us the gun and we will look at it". I'm pretty sure if all the mag followers are made the same way then this is replicable on their house magazines.
If I have a software problem with a piece of equipment at work and can reproduce it at will and call the manufacturer about it they don't say "please send me the router so we can duplicate it" they have their own equipment, they have all the code they've ever released and they can figure it out.
Smith and Wesson apparently aren't that well equipped, perhaps they don't have any guns at all in Springfield?
I don't know if the .45 mags are any different than the .40 mags, but I just did a whole lot of short load mags today, anywhere from 1-7 rounds,with my girlfriend at the range, just messing around with her, and never had a single mag pop out. My M&P40 is also set up for a left thumb mag release.
I just checked a mag, and with 4 rounds, the follower is at the mag catch notch on the odd side. I'm at home, so I can't take a test shot to see if I can replicate your problem, but I've personally shot 4/5 round loads several times and not had any issues.
Are the mags clean and everything seated properly?
Yes the mags and the pistol was very clean, the failure mode is with 3-4 rounds in the magazine you slap the magazine home and it feels like it locks into place but the mag follower blocks the mag release catch slightly. Chamber a round, take a shot, and the magazine drops out. If you use more than 3-4 or less, the catch seats properly and the mag follower rides over it when you shoot past 3-4 down to empty.
I can understand your frustration, but you are derailing the customer service at S&W by not sending your gun in for servicing.
Yes, they could probably recreate the problem in house, but the first incident of this issue evidently lies within your gun. They need your gun inhouse so they can check tolerances to see if QC failed and needs revising. They need to see how you made the change and if there was a problem in reassembly. They need to eliminate all possible causes for the malfunction before they can begin the correction process.
There may still be a problem with switching the mag release to the right side that they have not come across in testing, and they need to see first hand so that a correction can be made. Whether it is a publication to gunsmiths or an overhaul of the switching process or instructions that you used to make the change.
As I see it, you have three choices at this time:
- send the gun in for factory servicing, free + shipping
- take the gun to a local gun smith for servicing, $$
- break it down again and reinstall, your time & frustration & does not benefit anyone else who may have the same problem
As for your issue with the customer service representative you talked to: well, you were not talking to a gunsmith, you were talking to someone that facilitates resolution of your problem, i.e. "send the gun in for servicing at no cost to you and we will fix the problem and return a working gun to you."
I would suggest you call and get a Service Number and Service Request form (or whatever process S&W uses.) State the problem, include your contact information and ask for a description of the solution.
cheers - okboomer
Lead, follow, or get out of the way
Exercising my 2A Rights does NOT make me a CRIMINAL! Infringing on the exercise of those rights makes YOU one!
You may think I'm derailing customer service, but I don't want to send my carry gun in for service for God knows how long just to satisfy the curiosity of some people who won't even go to the effort of finding the exact same equipment I have at home and even LOOK at the symptoms.
I maintain that this is a very easily duplicated scenario, I have 4 magazines I used, two came with the pistol two came after with a deal for 2 free magazines with purchase.
The pistol has at most 1,000 rounds through it so it's not worn out.
I've been searching on some other web sites and this apparently also happened with the M&P 9 Compact.
The 9MM followers changed from black to grey with some modifications, I guess they figured they couldn't possibly have the same issue with other calibers. I'm trying to find some new followers online so I'll fix it myself and S&W can get bent.
I myself would probably take the magazine apart, find the little "rub spot" where it hangs up on the mag catch, and relieve it a TINY bit with small file and re-polish it.
- I however do alot of my own minor customizations on almost everything from guns to cars to computers, so it is a matter of skill. If you capable of analysing your problem, looking for the signs it presents you, and modifying without destroying the mag's follower, then go for it. Try it on one mag, test, re test.. then the next. (use snap caps so your not playing with live ammo through the testing cycles).
Just some advice.
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there were some issues with the M&P 45 according to my friend who is the head firearms instuctor for the WA DOC, they sent them back and S&W fixed them, I honestly forget the exact issues