It’d been a while since I’d shot my Smith & Wesson M&P9 Shield (the non-2.0 version, to be specific), so I took to the range to address that oversight.
The Ammo Drought Is Getting Real
Nine months into the pandemic, and it’s beyond a truism that there’s an ammunition shortage. You know things are getting serious when the Clackamas County PSTC gun range, which one presumes is higher up in the food chain of ammo supply (it’s a county sheriff facility, fer cryin' out loud), starts limiting folks to 100 rounds per day.
No Crying Over Spilled Idioms
Regardless, I’ll remain grateful for being able to practice with live ammo in the first place!
Behold the humble Shield 9mm (1.0) which is my very first firearm purchase, recommended by a co-worker and bought for $280 a bit over a year ago (and now going for $419 plus shipping to an FFL).
I’d practiced with it long enough to decide that I wanted something a bit larger for training classes, at which point I’d upgraded to the M&P9 M2.0 4" Compact.
But anyway, you never forget your first, and despite what everyone might say about the lackluster trigger that you should upgrade posthaste, this Shield remains 100% OEM (disregard the cheapo ProMag with the Mantis rail adapter - it’s for practice only).
Anyway, Back At the Range
Sorted for ammo and target, I’d set things up at a range lane.
I ended up alternating courses of live fire with dry fire intervals, primarily to make the limited ammunition supply last a bit longer, but also to mix things up. After a few iterations of dry fire, I shot 10 rounds at 7 yards:
A couple of dry fire runs, and back to live ammo, this time 10 rounds at 10 yards:
I think the dayglo target sticker helped with the sight picture.
I’d Like to Thank My Agent and My Personal Trainer
Practice pays off, and I do believe that the time spent with the Mantis gadget doing all that dry fire work has resulted in what I perceive as improved results at the range with the Shield 1.0. While the “stack and a half” “cool kids club” (e.g., P365, Hellcat) can boast greater magazine capacities, the Shield still shoots well and remains a relevant and valid choice for personal defense.