Great range report, thanks. The BG seems like a good pocket option. Congrats on the new pistol.
This is a discussion on S&W Bodyguard 380 Range Report within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Picked this up last week and wanted to do a bit of a show and tell/range report. This is the first little pocket pistol I ...
Picked this up last week and wanted to do a bit of a show and tell/range report. This is the first little pocket pistol I have had and it sure makes full time carry easy. I planned on a pocket pistol for a while but waited for the bugs to be worked out on the BG380 as it was to me the best package. This is a EAK serial and it is really working for me.
First range day I put in 100 rounds and a friend 40+ and an LCP owner a mag. He wrote down all the model info and said he really preferred the BG380. He said he was going to sell at the next show and pick up a BG380. I did enjoy the trigger on the LCP more but nothing else. More on that later.
No failures to feed to report and 3-4 Academy Monarch rounds that needed a second strike to fire. Ive had issues with russian primers before. They are hard. Here is a pic of the differences in strike on the monarch, Remington and Hornaday CP.
All different strikes on the Monarch (whole right row) Rem and Hornaday left row. ( Rem seemed the hottest in recoil, the primer strikes had a weird flat spot but all fired perfectly)
Once I kinda got the jist of the DA trigger I decided to bear down with some targeted shots. These are at 7m on a 6 1/4" target. This is about as far as I would think an engagement with a little pocket pistol would be. But its important to be on target.
(not too bad, Others have noted the oddness of the trigger break all the way back. I am tending to pull low left if I shoot with the pad of my finger and just low if I let it settle unnaturally in the crease of the first digit.)
(this was mostly shot from in the finger crease. The bullseyes are using a couple inch offset above. Still pulling low. )
I know these arent knock the center out guns but I am fine with the ability to at least put it in a 10" circle a great percentage of the time. Im not sure range sessions of 100 are reasonable as this thing pounded and bruised my adductor muscle (fat one at base of thumb) into a pulp. It may just be me but all that recoil is focused on a very small point in my hand.
I did some modding and found this in the foot section at the local walgreens. (when needing something odd, look in the womens section). This is a gel heel cushioner with a really sticky adhesive that fit the gun nearly perfect. I only had to trim as I wanted it up high where the gun sits in my hand.
(Comical, but effective)
I also used a Hogue Handall Jr as I like how the hogues have a thumb swell where your thumb can rest. We will see if it stays on as its a bit harder to get out of the pocket fast due to the grip of the rubber. Easier to grip in the pocket but am afraid it could catch the bunched up pocket and catch.
(Just the womens heel gel wouldnt have this issue)
I decided to go back out just to check if this helped. Even with a sore hand this was a dream to shoot. I found myself shooting another 100 rounds before I knew it. The gun was much more pointable and controllable. I had the range to myself so I was shooting a a much faster pace to try to simulate a real life issue. I find the gun easier to pull the trigger in one smooth deliberate action than the staging way which is not smooth at all to me, and not proper practice in a real encounter. Staging would be very unwise in that situation. Fine for the range but never if you have it pointed at a BG.
This is a "encounter pace" of fire at 7m with a reload. 2 mags, all on target.
This is another 7 m "encounter pace" of fire with 2 reloads. I find I have to push he mag release button to insert another mag. Dont know if its supposed to be like that. But other than that insertion is intuitive and not much different than a full size.
(you can see my pull left again. Sometimes you just wont be able to adjust your grip if something happens.)
I also for grins thought I would fire at 15m. Now if we are actually doing that you are really at a SOL distance and you absolutely have to be on target. These are deliberate and Aimed. Not fast.
All targets shown are offhand, combat stance.
Now, I think the BG380 is a good little gun. It will almost always be on me and Im confident in its reliability and ability to be on target. It is not however a great gun. Smith will always overlook something stealing a great gun status from the jaws of victory. On this one they disgustingly overlooked the trigger. Not only the pull which should be cream of the class (It has a safety, a feature I love. No need to use a freaking trigger for another safety) but the break point. They could have cared but they didnt. Its just as easy to make a proper trigger as a bad one and this one is nearing bad. I thought the LCP had a much better trigger in pull and break. Thats a no safety pistol.
If I have the inclination and a smith that would look at it for a modest fee and fix time I am going to see what can be done. Not something you like to say on a brand new gun, one that you like every other thing about.
Thanks and I hope you found it a bit interesting!
Last edited by dcfis; April 11th, 2011 at 05:32 AM.
Nice report, good presentation. So many buy a pocket pistol thinking "small gun, small caliber; light recoil" and that's seldom the case. This review parallels most of the "non-gun magazine" reviews I've read. Good idea but not thought out as well as it should have been. Too many complaints for me to purchase one of these for me.
Primer strikes and impressions are a bit weird. And it's the right column, by the way, not row.
Retired USAF E-8. Lighten up and enjoy life because:
Paranoia strikes deep, into your life it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... Buffalo Springfield - For What It's Worth
Nice report and that's a pretty creative grip solution you made.
Great report, thanks for posting! I have been looking into a BG, and really like the size, just not too crazy about the push button for the laser to come on. I put a CT on a Taurus pt709 and love how it just comes on when you grab it..... Thanks for the informative post!
Thank you kindly for this report. Based on this and other reports on the web and a friend who has a Bodyguard .380 and was kind enough to let me use at the range I went out and purchased a Bodyguard .380 for myself. It, too, is an "EAK" serial number. I fired lots of monarch (a little less than four boxes) and two boxes of Hornady Critical Defense through it without issues. It's a great addition to my collection of personal protection pistols. The only bad news is that I've had it less than a week and the insight laser module has stopped working. I have been careful to remove it while cleaning the pistol so that no solvents could get into the module and also replaced the batteries just in case the batteries from the factory were low on charge (I used the module for a total of maybe 5 minutes in my two range trips with this pistol). Anyhow, I've got an email in to Smith & Wesson and suspect they'll make it right. Thanks again!
Great Post OP. Im glad you like the weapon.
My wife carries a Bodyguard 380 and she loves it. Biggest issue for her when carrying a gun is safety. She is just unsure about carrying a gun with no safety or the "cocked and locked" method, so the Bodyguard fits her perfectly and couldnt be more happy with it. I bought it for her when they first came out (im deployed and cant go and look at it to see what the serial number is, but i doubt its an EAK) and we havent had any issues with the firearm at all. Im pretty happy with it as well.
Good luck and be safe.
See which states honor your CCP
Crime is actually less in places where people own guns. Washington, D.C., is a case in point. It has the strictest gun laws, but who has the highest crime rate in the country? Washington, D.C.
Got a kick out of your story - especially the gel thing that you purchased.
I have been planning on purchasing a BG380. The trigger info bothers me a bit, but I have a 357 that sounds like a canon, so I will just get used to it, or have huge callouses on my thumb.
Thanks for the info.
The next time I need something odd, I will look in the men's section.....
I should update the trigger info. Aftr 200-300 rounds it really smooths out to become quite acceptable. Its not perfect but world better than where it started
Thanks for the report. I have had a BG 380 for a while and love it. No issues yet.
" The illegal we do immediately. The unconstitutional takes a little longer." Henry Kissenger
Good report. Getting ready to snag one of these up. I haven't researched enough to know which all "good" serial numbers to look for. Anyone know off hand?
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Great report! I almost bought the BG, but went with the LCP instead. Heard more positives about it. I think you will find after you shoot it a couple times, the "pain" goes away, at least it did for me and a few others that have the smaller 380 pocket guns. Honestly now it's my favorite one to shoot at the range and often shoot 100-200 rounds when I go out. I've even managed to keep a good 3" group at 25 yards after some practice :) Keep up the great reports, love to hear about the pocket guns
Love mine, had a keltec and it was ok, have a diamond back and it screws up too much. Long trigger pull, but is very reliable and does not seem to care what you feed it.
Thanks for the post. I have one of these and I've been trying to find a way to cushion the grip. I've been experimenting with the padding from a bow grip with a layer of PacSkin over the top, but I think you're solution might work better. Is the gel pad under that Hogue grip in the picture? If I could get this little gun padded up right, it would be a fantastic pocket gun. The iron sights on mine are dead on, it's very accurate and just what's needed for very discrete carry. If you want to see something interesting, fire it at night. You'll see sparks flying out of the loaded chamber indicator!