I have the 9mm Shield and LOVE the gun. Thin and light, accurate, and 9mm's are so cheap now a days. It's a hat trick of a gun. I have a question though about the ones that have come out without the external safety. If the external safety isn't needed then why not just use the normal one with the safety off? Better still, if the safety is an "accessory" then why was it there to begin with?
Being a southpaw, the external safety on this gun is an annoyance and if I am gonna pull the gun for protection not only can that extra half a second to rotate the gun, turn the safety off, rotate it back, firm up my right hand on the bottom, and then line it up can be the matter of life or death. As one person put it, "if I am pulling my peice, I'm ready to go. A safety shouldn't be something I'm worried about in the heat of the moment." Condition 0. Not having the safety on seems to be the best answer for a southpaw.
A second option I have piddled with was to have the gun loaded, safety off, full magazine, but NOT chambered and just load it when ready. Maybe the sound of cocking the gun will be enough of a deterant? But the timing is still lengthened as much as the safety. The only advantage here is that I KNOW it is ready to go when I cock it. The safety can be stiff sometimes and I am worried that if I needed to pull it that adrenaline would cause me to not disengage the safety initially. I fail to properly disengage the safety in the adrenaline because I'm in a rush to use it.
In walked the no external safety Shield. My childhood always said to keep the safety engaged, but here comes this gun, the exact same as mine, but doesn't have the safety. Now I'm confused. Lack of an external safety will totally take care of a southpaw's conundrum with this otherwise flawless cc gun.
How much safety am I giving up without engaging the safety? I carry in the small of my back, so does this increase my odds of an AD if I don't engage the safety?
The risk of safety off is that it can be accidentally engaged.
The risk of chamber empty is potentially worse as there's not a lot of slide mass to work with and a stiffer recoil spring to contend with not to mention that small of the back coupled with chamber empty is a recipe for disaster if your assailant is even remotely interested in jacking you up when you decide to draw the gun.
I'd opt for the safety-less model and remove a lot of these issues.
I have a run of the mill Uncle Mike's under the belt holster. It's for a right handed person, hence why it's in the small of my back. The fact I already have the regular model with the safety, just using it with safety off would suffice, no? The safeties on these guns are very stiff imho.
I've got a Shield, and I prefer the safety. However, I'm right handed. When I carry the gun in my IWB holster, I carry it with the safety off, and a round in the chamber. With the holster the trigger is covered, so no worries about accidental discharge. Sometimes, rather than mess with the holster, I'll throw the Shield in my jacket pocket. In this case I carry same as above with the safety on. In this situation, I worry that the trigger is exposed and not protected like in the holster. It would be unlikely that something could entangle the trigger in my pocket and result in a discharge, but I just feel better having the additional safety in this situation. When I practice drawing the gun, I always include disengaging the safety, regardless of how it is carried. For right handed guys, the safety is in a very good location, and very easy to disengage. If it is already off, then my thumb just gives it a little extra downward push, and no big deal. I feel that the safety gives me some additional carry options, so I'm happy S&W gives us the choice of with or without, but I know guys that carry their glocks, etc., the same way, and no worries.
Maybe if enough of you lefty's will complain, they will come out with an ambidextrous safety version, so you can have more options.
The Shield has a built in trigger safety. The trigger is hinged, and it won’t pull unless the tip is engaged first. Unless your finger or something else engages the trigger it will not "accidentally" fire. There should be no big concern with carrying with one in the chamber and the manual safety off......... https://www.gunsamerica.com/blog/new...ved-sw-shield/
I have two M&P 9 Shields; one with an external safety and on without. I prefer the one with the safety but not for the reasons most would think. I do NOT like externally settable safeties on my carry guns. My Shield is the one exception to this rule for me. The reason is that I like to carry this gun when on vacation and there are a number of times when it gets moved from the holster to a glove box or door map pocket, or even carried in a pouch. When doing any of this, I use the safety. When carrying the gun the safety is ALWAYS disengaged.
1. Carry your Shield with its safety off. That way the gun will always be ready and you won't be accidentally engaging it in an extreme encounter.
2. As for carrying without a round in the chamber, I would most highly recommend against this. Too many negative variables attached to this practice to count.