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Ray Price: My Shield

With the warm summer months upon us, I recently decided to put away my Sig Sauer 9mm P239 for a more compact, and lighter pistol for conceal carry. There have been numerous subcompact pistols released that are lightweight, and can be concealed easily. I opted for the Smith and Wesson M&P Shield in 9mm.

I personally prefer all steel pistols over polymer frame pistols because I enjoy the feel steel pistols have when shooting them in comparison to polymer pistols. But when searching for a new everyday carry gun for the summertime, the Smith and Wesson Shield fit my requirements. The Shield is a thin handgun. It has a 3.1-inch barrel, with an overall length of 6.1 inches and an unloaded weight of 19 ounces.

The Shield can be equipped with a seven or an eight round magazine. I have a few seven round magazines and one eight round magazine. I usually carry one or two spare magazines in my pocket. When wearing it with a belt clip holster, I hardly can tell it’s on and it is barely visible with a t-shirt on. Of all the handguns I have carried, it is the best concealable handgun I have owned, that does not sacrifice stopping power for concealment. I have owned a Smith and Wesson M&P Bodyguard in 380acp and although it fit perfectly in my custom ostrich pocket holster an it was barely noticeable, I did not like the snappiness when firing and I wanted a 9mm instead of 380acp caliber pistol.

This summer, the Smith and Wesson M&P Shield will be on my hip wherever I go. I’ll still be able to wear a t-shirt and shorts without compromising my dress when carrying a pistol. After taking this firearm to the range and having multiple range sessions with it, I feel comfortable carrying this pistol on me. In your comments let me know what you’re carrying in right now and your thoughts on the Smith and Wesson Shield.

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2 thoughts on “Ray Price: My Shield

  1. Gabriel Allan says:

    Baton Rouge, LA and now Minnesota…what are your thoughts?

    1. Randy says:

      I also switched from a P239 to a Shield, with a stop along the way to try the Bodyguard 380. Like Ray, I found the Shield to be a perfect combination of size and weight in a potent caliber, but the Shield performs like a larger gun.

      I initially avoided using the Shield’s manual safety, worrying that I might not disengage the small lever if I needed to use the gun. Over time, I found that I could keep the safety on while handling the Shield, take the safety off when I holstered the Shield, and put the safety back on before I removed the Shield from the holster. In short, the Shield can be instantly ready for use, but can also be handled very safely.

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