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Old August 12, 2012, 04:41 PM   #1
Phil-USN
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M&P9C reliablity issues

Hey all i dont post very often but i have been lurking a lot, anyways i purchased a M&P9C about a month ago and have a few questions/concerns.

Ive fired about 300 rounds through it and just about everytime i go to the range I end up having it "jam" on a fully loaded magazine. By jam i mean it will fire one round and then when it feeds the second the slide doesnt fully return to the forward position. I thought maybe it was the magazine so i tried another and its kind of hit or miss. Sometimes it will feed them all reliably without a hiccup, other it will fail 3 or 4 times.

Now this is my only gun at the moment (not for long wife permiting), so i guess my concern is can i trust it if and when i need to use it? I dont want to start a revolver vs semi debate but i'll be honest i sure loved the feel of my buddys GP-100. Now i know both guns can fail, but the revolver is much simpler. Anywho im kind of rambling so i just wanted to pick y'alls brains on the subject thanks.
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Old August 12, 2012, 04:54 PM   #2
testuser
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Ok, sounds like the slide is failing to return to battery, maybe? This kind of issue is almost always ammunition related.

There can be numerous causes. Weak or improperly sized ammo (for reloaders) can cause these malfunctions.

Where are the cases landing? The empties should be ejecting at least 5 to 7 feet from you.

What kind of ammunition are you using?

On the next range trip I'd try a box of FMJ high quality American made ammunition of a different brand.

I can't exactly tell from your description, but the round might also be jamming against the feed ramp. Again, try a different brand of ammo.
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Old August 12, 2012, 04:55 PM   #3
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You can't trust a gun that consistently jams and trust is a major consideration with a Personal Defense Weapon. Do what is needed to fix it or replace it with something that is effective and trustworthy. I personally carry a M&P 9c but that doesn't mean I would carry it if I didn't feel it would work when called on.

I would shoot another few hundred rounds at the range with different types of ammo and I would check for wear areas on the frame and slide to see if there are issues with fit. Be sure it's lubricated properly and make sure you can fire a minimum of 100 rounds without failure before you trust it to carry. If you can't, contact S&W or your local gunsmith to see what's wrong.

You carry a gun because it fires a bullet each time you press the trigger. If yours can't do that it is the equivalent to showing up to a gun fight with a brick.
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Old August 12, 2012, 05:10 PM   #4
Phil-USN
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Ive only shot one kind of ammunition out of it, so ya i guess i should try a few more brands before i start crying huh? Hah oh well thanks for the quick responses.

By the way i have been using Speer lawman 124 grain 9mm, mostly because it was cheap... Maybe I just answered my own question. Any recommendations on decent ammo for the range?
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Old August 12, 2012, 05:14 PM   #5
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I use a lot of Remington UMC 124 gr. fmj for range/target practice. Never had any problems with it. I also use Win. White Box fmj.
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Old August 12, 2012, 05:18 PM   #6
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it really stinks that you are having problems with your pistol.

You messed up paying for a S&W M&P9 in the first place. Shouldve gone with a Glock. My $0.02. They are easier to modify and through time and history, deadly reliable.
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Old August 12, 2012, 05:23 PM   #7
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My current M&Ps are 45s; my M&P9c doesn't arrive until next week.

My PPQ, however, has had some FTRB issues with Speer 124 LawMan. I had assumed the Speer would not be the cause, but now I have to wonder.

With regard to M&P vs Glock, I don't think there's much difference with regard to average reliability, based on having owned both, and on paying attention to complaints in various forums.

Try a different ammo; if the problem persists, and it's happening with every magazine you use, then you might try changing the recoil spring, lubing the extractor, etc.

And don't pay too much attention to fanboys of any brand.
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Old August 12, 2012, 07:38 PM   #8
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I've been shooting my M&P9c for more than four years now, and the only problems have been ammo related. As suggested above, try Winchester White Box - it runs flawlessly in mine. Blazer (similar to Lawman) was the stuff that gave me problems. Everything else has been smooth sailing.
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Old August 13, 2012, 07:20 AM   #9
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My M&P9c has been reliable with Winchester WB (115 fmj) and my 115 grain HP reloads using mixed brass and 5.0 grains of W231.
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Old August 13, 2012, 07:49 AM   #10
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Why would you carry a 9mm instead of a 45acp anyway? But that aside, I have never owned a semi-auto that is truly 100% problem free while I have never had even a minor issue with any of my S&W revolvers. I will admit that my old Ruger P97DC has had a FTE only once in all the years I have fired it, but my revolvers have never had even one failure.
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Old August 13, 2012, 10:13 AM   #11
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Quote:
You messed up paying for a S&W M&P9 in the first place. Shouldve gone with a Glock. My $0.02. They are easier to modify and through time and history, deadly reliable.
Quote:
Why would you carry a 9mm instead of a 45acp anyway?
Lol, so much fun in this thread already.

Quote:
By the way i have been using Speer lawman 124 grain 9mm, mostly because it was cheap... Maybe I just answered my own question. Any recommendations on decent ammo for the range?
The idea that somehow WWB would function more reliably than Speer Lawman seems laughable to me. Speer Lawman should be a good step above WWB. That said I would try another a few other ammo brands to be safe.

If you keep having issues, send it back to S&W. They have one of the best warranties in the business, no sense not to use it. It's not your job to be a home gunsmith. S&W will pay for shipping both ways too.
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Old August 13, 2012, 10:18 AM   #12
Phil-USN
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Yeah and here i was worried about it turning into a revolver vs autoloader debate... I should have known it would bring out some glock fanboys. So yeah basically ill buy some better ammo this week and take it to the range this weekend and test it out. If it still malfunctions then its off to s&w i guess, and my next purchase will probably be a revolver anyways.
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Old August 13, 2012, 11:05 AM   #13
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Quote:
and my next purchase will probably be a revolver anyways.
If you want a revolver that's cool. But don't let this incident turn you off to semi-autos. There are reasons armies and police agencies have gone away from revolvers. There are also a lot of reliable semi-autos out there. Any gun, even a revolver, can have issues. That's why there are gunsmiths in the world.

Edit: Case in point, I owned a S&W M&P fullsize at one point. In 1000 rounds down the tube I never once had a failure of any kind.
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Old August 13, 2012, 11:23 AM   #14
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Well said, TunnerRat.

I'd definitely try using some different ammo and next time you're at the range have the rangemaster or another veteran shooter fire through a mag. Maybe the gun doesn't like you for some reason . Seriously though, if you're not gripping high and tight enough (not that you need to strangle the thing) it could create an issue. Just my $0.02, but I'd have somebody knowledgeable look at it/fire it before I sent it off to S&W. Not that I wouldn't trust the manufacturer, sometimes it is just nice to get immediate feedback face to face with another human. Even though S&W has great customer service, shipping it to them will take a couple of days, then them assessing the problem and getting back to you will take a couple of days, and it could be something more simple than all that. Just my thoughts.

And yeah, you should have bought a Glock.

Not really. Sorry, I couldn't resist a little sarcasm. You won't see me drinking the kool-aid. The M&P9c is a great choice, and I hope you get things figured out.
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Old August 13, 2012, 12:41 PM   #15
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Quote:
You messed up paying for a S&W M&P9 in the first place. Shouldve gone with a Glock. My $0.02. They are easier to modify and through time and history, deadly reliable.
Plenty of issues with the new Gen 4 Glocks as well so they are hard to trust anymore or at least till there is a long run without issues.

OP, if you are having problems with your M&P9c send it back to S&W. They will give you a pre-paid label to send it in. Turn around is usually about 2 weeks. A malfunctioning M&P is not typical and they should and will fix it if something is wrong. I would not trust my life with it in its current state.
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Old August 13, 2012, 01:19 PM   #16
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@OP Do you have calipers? I am curious as to what the OAL on the lawman is.

I have run a variety of loads through my m&p 9c, from relatively light commercial reloads to various +p ammo. They all worked just fine. But it is possible that maybe the lawman is loaded slightly long.

As others have said though, if different ammo doesnt change things, send it back to S&W let them fix it.
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Old August 14, 2012, 03:24 PM   #17
momano
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I bought a S&W M&P 9c recently and had similar problems. The smith at LGS suggested a little oil on the part of the slide that rides over the top of the bullet. He said that S&W used a very strong spring in the magazine, and that it would eventually loosen a little. Worked for me~ Good luck.
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Old August 14, 2012, 04:25 PM   #18
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SO it looks like the summary is:
*try a couple of different ammo types, at least initially. I wouldn't consider 300 rounds broken in yet. SOme guns just have different ammo preferences. As a .22 shooter I know each of my .22s has its own strong preferences.
*also keep trying different magazines. That or a combo of the two may be a factor.
*lube the points including where noted above. Other's mileage may vary but you might overlube it for the next couple of hundred rounds.

If that doesn't work definitely send it in with a detailed explanation of what it is doing. It helps to write it down while you're doing the testing itself. S&W is noted for very good service and should clear it up.
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Old August 14, 2012, 06:02 PM   #19
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All I can say is that my M&P9c has never jammed on me. It failed to fire a round once. I waited 1 minute, 'recocked' the magazine with that round in it and it fired the second time.

I've shot Federal Champion [think walmart], Winchester White Box, S&B, Fiocchi, Wolf [old, like bought in 2004] 115gr ammo with no problems. I've fired Winchester Ranger 124+P ammo with no problems. The one round I had problems with was a Speer round. I forget the type, but it was a personal defense round purchased around 2003 with a nickle-plated case and jacketed HollowPoint: I think it was a 'silvertip'?

I've probably fired nearly 1000 rounds through it, from one of 6 magazines, with no failures [other than the one hard primer].

The one thing that comes to mind other than ammo issues is 'limp-wristing' of the handgun. But, if that isn't going on, then I'd say follow everyone else's advice.

Your experience doesn't seem normal to me based on my experience with the M&P9c.
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Old August 15, 2012, 05:34 PM   #20
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Our Department issues S&W M&P 9's and .40's. I have never seen one jam in training. They are great pistols, and unlike Glocks, do NOT feel like Big Block Lego's in your hand. It may be your ammo, or the gun just needs cleaning / lube. If not, S&W will take care of you.
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Old August 15, 2012, 07:21 PM   #21
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Did you purchase the pistol new or used? If used, then you may have inherited someone else's problem. Assuming it was new, did you completely disassemble, clean and then reassemble/lubricate per the manual? The same with the magazine(s)? I would give the pistol and magazines a thorough cleaning and then lubricate a bit on the wet side, then take it to the range and try with a different type of ammunition. If you still have the same problem, time to call S&W.
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Old August 15, 2012, 07:47 PM   #22
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M&Ps are not a finicky design. There's a good argument to be made that they're have a more reliable track record than the Generation 4 Glocks. If my pistol wouldn't feed Speer Lawman (which is quality ammo) I would call Smith & Wesson and put their well-regarded customer service to work for me.
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Old August 19, 2012, 09:06 PM   #23
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My M&P 9c has never jammed on me ever.

It is very accurate & dependable.

Any one that thinks you should have bought a Glock instead of a M&P is dead wrong.

Your M&P is heads & shoulders above a Glock IMHO.

Could you be "limp wristing" it a bit?

Short barrel auto's are more apt to fail with limp wristing than bigger guns.

I hope you get it figured out - it is an excellent gun.

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Old August 20, 2012, 04:29 AM   #24
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I have used my M&P9c in several 500 round pistol classes. The ONLY time I have ever had an issue with it was with Tula steel case ammo. The round seemed to be almost too long and would sometimes give me a failure to feed. I have shot a ton of reloads, jacketed and lead, Blazer both brass and aluminum, and anything else I could buy cheap for the classes with no problems. FWIW, the Tula functions fine in my full size M&P9.

Just my personal experience, yours will vary.
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Old August 20, 2012, 08:11 AM   #25
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Not trying to be funny here and make a lame "limp wristing" crack, but it could be the issue. Subcompacts can be espesially sensitive to this due to the heavier recoil springs. Any energy lost from a loose grip can transfer to less energy for the slide to complete it's action. This would cause less forward momentum of the slide, feeding issues, slide not going fully into battery.
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