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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I went out and bought me another handgun, my second in less than a week (after my Ruger P95). This one is a brand spankin' new Smith & Wesson Shield 9mm with an FDE (Flat Dark Earth) frame. Cost me only $325. Never owned or shot one before, going to the range tomorrow with my two new acquisitions. Will report back.

P.S. On a side note why do they call it Flat DARK Earth? It is really tan-ish, a light shade of brown, nothing "dark" about it. And on this gun it actually seems to lean a bit toward the green like OD. (can't really tell in this stock photo). Really just an ugly mud color.
 

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Darn nice gun. I'm trying to convince my wife she needs one.
 

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I call it BSB. (The B's stand for Baby and Brown...) Nice pistol, though...
 

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Personally I like the color, looks very close to the FDE that Taurus used on the PT809. Like the two tone look enough to buy 2 of them.
 

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Comgrats! I like the look of the black on FDE. I had built a 1911 in similar colors years ago based on an Argentine Colt Systema.
 

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I think you're gonna like it. I've carried a Shield .40 for about three years now, and still love it! Accurate and very reliable. Mines all black, but that's a nice color combination.:thumb:
 

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Nice Shield! I predict you are going to like it....and that was a great price!
 
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Nice new firearm. I like the colour combination!
 
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Congrats on your new slide gun.
 

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They call it FDE because if they called it "ugly tan" no one would buy it.
Who knows, maybe they were comparing the dark earth to good old Georgia red clay??
explain to me the difference in URBAN GREY and Rural Gray?? or battleship gray, or confederate gray??
who knows how they come up with these names.
The CZ looks more to me to brownish than grey.
a lot of people get all excited about the color, personally I had just as soon had a black one, but hey it was a Shadow -2 at a decent price, so I jumped on it.
 

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Who knows, maybe they were comparing the dark earth to good old Georgia red clay??
explain to me the difference in URBAN GREY and Rural Gray?? or battleship gray, or confederate gray??
who knows how they come up with these names.
The CZ looks more to me to brownish than grey.
a lot of people get all excited about the color, personally I had just as soon had a black one, but hey it was a Shadow -2 at a decent price, so I jumped on it.
A Shadow 2 is on my list of 'eventually...' guns.

My real beef with FDE is that nobody can agree what FDE actually is. My AR pistol has five or six different shades of light/medium tan all called 'FDE' by the various parts makers.

 
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FDE a fancy phrase for cat poo brown. Nice Shield, it will surprise you with ease of shooting and accuracy.
 
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
RANGE REPORT: So I finally took my new S&W Shield and my slightly used Ruger P95 (both 9mm) to the range today. I brought 240 rounds mixed of FMJ all 115 grains standard load, some Federal, some Blazer Brass and some Perfecta stuff made in Italy that was actually brass jacketed bullets instead of copper.

I put 90 rounds through the Ruger first as I was familiar with it and it was already a bit broken in and I wanted to save most of the ammo for the Shield. As the old P-series Rugers usually go it ate everything so well and with such little recoil it was almost boring. Almost, it was still a pleasant range experience. I already had three magazines for it loaded up before I left as well as the two Shield mags. Ironically the two Shield mags at 8 and 7 rounds each added together for 15 rounds which was exactly the same as a single Ruger mag so that made the ammo count easier (Three kinds of ammo through two different guns can get a bit tough to keep track of). What did disappoint me though was the accuracy, at 20 feet it strung the shots vertically, too much for my liking, I had always thought these guns were more accurate than that. And a little off to the left, that can be corrected.

When I shifted then to the Shield it was noticeably different. Obviously it is a smaller gun in all dimensions, height, length and width. This is a real skinny gun as many others have commented before. I was expecting harsher recoil from it and I was not wrong so I paid attention to my grip more. This gun wakes you up and forces you pay attention to what you are doing for every shot. And unfortunately with have the ammo capacity of the mags each mag session was over much too quick. That made itself obvious when it came time to reload each mag. The Ruger mags while stiff at first loosened up quickly and were easy to load with the Ruger tool.

The Shield mags though were both very tough to load every time even after ten loadings for each one, they never got better. The Ruger tool helped here again but even that wasn't enough, these buggers were the toughest mags I ever had to fight with in my 35 years of shooting (and that includes some ornery Makarov mags from the ex Soviet Union). I shot 150 rounds through the Shield, that meant 10 loadings through each magazine, two of them, 20 times total. Needless to say my thumbs were a bit sore. Accuracy was very good, I was working a good rat hole at 20 feet. Off to the left again, but unfortunately very low by about 2 or 3 inches (was using 6-o'clock hold bullseye). I know I can fix the windage but I don't know what to do about the elevation.

The trigger on the Shield was excellent, the best striker system I have ever shot, much shorter take up than my old Taurus Mil Pro. The Ruger was a typical Cold War double action hammer fire, decent single action pull, smooth, but long take up. The Shield has the better quick fire trigger and is the better choice for carrying into a back alley, but in a SHTF scenario the old war horse Ruger is the better choice, higher capacity and plenty of old mags out there, and if you run out of ammo you can beat your opponent to death with the Ruger, it's a tank. I'll keep both.
 

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The Shield mags though were both very tough to load every time even after ten loadings for each one, they never got better. The Ruger tool helped here again but even that wasn't enough, these buggers were the toughest mags I ever had to fight with in my 35 years of shooting (and that includes some ornery Makarov mags from the ex Soviet Union). I shot 150 rounds through the Shield, that meant 10 loadings through each magazine, two of them, 20 times total. Needless to say my thumbs were a bit sore. Accuracy was very good, I was working a good rat hole at 20 feet. Off to the left again, but unfortunately very low by about 2 or 3 inches (was using 6-o'clock hold bullseye). I know I can fix the windage but I don't know what to do about the elevation.
I've carried the Shield 9mm daily for over 4 years. I like it so much I bought the .45 last year. The mags will loosen up a bit, but it takes a while. Couldn't hurt to leave them loaded. The sights are definitely set for POA=POI alignment, so a 6 o'clock hold will leave you shooting low. That's true of all the M&P line pistols I've shot and seems generally true for most 3 dot combat-style sights.
 

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AHH YEP!
combat type sights are designed to shoot people, some that may be moving, not paper bad guys that are standing still.
place the dots center mass and squeeze!
 

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The Shield mags will loosen up. At first, mine were so stiff, I bought a mag loader. Now after about 2,000 rounds, I can load the mags by hand now.
 
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I use an Uplula on almost anything except my Ruger .22. Saves thumbs.

Nice Shield.
 
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I went out and bought me another handgun, my second in less than a week (after my Ruger P95). This one is a brand spankin' new Smith & Wesson Shield 9mm with an FDE (Flat Dark Earth) frame. Cost me only $325. Never owned or shot one before, going to the range tomorrow with my two new acquisitions. Will report back.

P.S. On a side note why do they call it Flat DARK Earth? It is really tan-ish, a light shade of brown, nothing "dark" about it. And on this gun it actually seems to lean a bit toward the green like OD. (can't really tell in this stock photo). Really just an ugly mud color.
Tanish isn't very tactical...
 
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