S&W Shield 40 First Impressions

We were lucky to get our hands on a Smith & Wesson Shield Chambered in .40 S&W today, and we were not disappointed. Due to popular demand the Shield has been a hot pistol since it’s debut and especially since the concealed carry market began growing exponentially.

First glance, this pistol is fantastic. We only fired about a hundred rounds through it so we aren’t going to give a full run down just yet. She needs to prove herself a bit more.

First things first, this weapon is light, it is nimble and it fits the hand more like a compact than a single stack sub-compact. Compared to similar pistols in the same market it has the similar weight and balance but just feels meatier. So far she’s looking pretty good.

Point of aim with the M&P grip is very natural and target acquisition is pretty snappy. The two magazines that come with the Shield are a 6 round small magazine and the 7 round extended magazine with a stippled grip. The 3 white dots line up very easily and the sights line up sharply, although I wouldn’t mind the comfort of tritium in those sights.

Compared to a 9mm, the .40 has almost zero difference in recoil. A bigger round with a bigger punch and almost no difference in felt recoil compared to the smaller caliber. This pistol feels really good in my hands and I am beginning to fall in love.

But what about the trigger you ask? Well let me tell you it is a good trigger for the size. The pistol is technically a Double Action (DA) Striker fired trigger, but it fires more likea single Action (SA) and with that you don’t have to suffer through a heavy trigger pull through eternity for an uncertain break. Personally, I like light slack and a clean break in my triggers and this one comes pretty close. But then again, this isn’t a target pistol, this is a pistol meant to not get too touchy in a stressful situation so with that I can understand not having a glass rod breaking 2 lb. pull.

There are 2 physical safety systems on the weapon, one at the rear that is manipulated with the thumb and there is a trigger safety that disengages when the trigger is pulled properly. Nothing excessive or intrusive and all edges are blended and rounded to make it a smooth drawing weapon, yet, the controls like the safety, and mag release are not so blended that they cannot be manipulated. I can probably go on and on for a lot longer, but we are just going to have to wait for the full review now aren’t we…

Check back for a detailed review in the near future!