S&W M&P 340 CT Revolver - Thoughts?

This is a discussion on S&W M&P 340 CT Revolver - Thoughts? within the Defensive Carry Guns forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Besides the Kimber Ultra Covert II, I am seriously considering the Smith & Wesson M&P 340 CT (Centennial) Revolver as my CCW. I've read several ...

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Thread: S&W M&P 340 CT Revolver - Thoughts?

  1. #1
    Member Array austinguy23's Avatar
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    S&W M&P 340 CT Revolver - Thoughts?

    Besides the Kimber Ultra Covert II, I am seriously considering the Smith & Wesson M&P 340 CT (Centennial) Revolver as my CCW. I've read several reviews about these which often state that they've had issues with the frame. Chuck Hawks wrote an article about S&W's poor quality control (see http://www.chuckhawks.com/smith-wesson_dark.htm). That, combined with several posts complaining about this gun's unreliable frame give me pause.

    If you guys can shed some light on the following points, it would help me in making up my mind on this gun.


    1.) Recoil of the M&P 340 CT (assuming .38+P ammo; I realize shooting .357s in this model is generally considered absurd considering the weight of the gun)

    2.) Quality of the gun given it's manufacturer *and* the particular model.

    3.) Cost of the gun reasonable? $1k+ is pretty steep for a revolver...

    4.) General feedback about this particular model considering I'm looking for a light, easy-to-conceal gun.

    If any of you feel another model is better for any particular reason, please let me know. The light weight is awfully hard to pass up though...



    Thanks in advance for everyone's input. The wealth of knowledge on this site is impressive...
    Last edited by austinguy23; May 1st, 2007 at 02:05 AM. Reason: Corrected grammar typo

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    Member Array Spiff_P239's Avatar
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    I have an M&P 340 on its way as we speak. It should show up tomorrow if I'm lucky. While it may be chambered for .357 Magnum, I will be carrying it with .38+P ammunition. Before ordering the revolver, I took a 340Sc for a test run. The Sc is 1.3 oz lighter than the M&P but recoil with Speer Gold Dots was very manageable. I put a couple rounds of Remington UMC .357 Magnum through it and it wasn't bad at all. While I definitely won't be shooting full-house loads, my guess is that it'll handle .38+P without a problem. I got a quote on this revolver without the laser grips and it was $629 shipped from SCP Firearms (www.scpfirearms.com). Add in about $150 as my guess for the grips and that would make it close to $800, well under the $1000 MSRP.
    Last edited by Spiff_P239; May 1st, 2007 at 11:52 AM.

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    VIP Member Array jwhite75's Avatar
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    If you end up buying this gun post it and let us know. I am curious about purchase as well.
    Friends don't let friends be MALL NINJAS.


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  5. #4
    Distinguished Member Array BIG E's Avatar
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    If you are going to shoot .38+p's then why spend the extra cash on the 340?

    I had the same decision to make. I wanted the .357 because it was a .357, but I couldn't justify the cost.

    I went with the 642 airweight without the CT grips. I found that the rubber grips tended to grab my shirt tail and reveal my CC rig. The CT's are cool, but I don't feel like they are worth the extra cost. IMHO.

    I replaced the CT's with a set of custom wood grips. They are slicker and the shirt just falls over them. The grips feel good and function well too.

    I carry it loaded with Speer +P's along with a speed strip in my weak hand front pocket.

    Works great for me and I picked mine up for 319.00.

    Keep the 1k and buy two guns. Or three if you do it right.
    Don't hit at all if it is honorably possible to avoid hitting; but never hit soft!

    -- Theodore Roosevelt --

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    Ex Member Array BikerRN's Avatar
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    Why spend the extra money on an M&P if you are going to shoot 38's?

    I'd get a 442/642 and be done with it. The money you save will pay for a lot of extra ammo, or a second gun. Why not get two 642's or one with the Lazer Grips?

    To be frank, I don't like shooting 357 out of anything smaller than my 4" Service Revolver, and in fact prefer to shoot a longer barrel than that.

    The 38 will do the job, if you do your part. The money you save will allow you to learn how to do your part.

    Biker

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    Member Array CCMO's Avatar
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    I (actually my spouse) have had ours for a bit over a month now. We've both put about 300 total rounds of .38+P through it so far, both white box and Gold Dots.

    We bought this expensive model (paid $799 plus tax, by the way) because:
    1) Wanted the dark color. I find the reflections off a stainless top distracting in daylight.
    2) Wanted the laser grips, and the S&W bulk factory discount was cheaper than buying the grips afterwards.
    3) Wanted the XS Express Big Dot 24/7 Tritium night front sight. We both love these sights. We have had them installed on all our defensive weapons, and this way I didn't have to figure out how to mount it 'cause S&W took care of it for me.
    4) Wanted the light weight of the alloy frame.

    The .38+P produces a fair amount of felt recoil. My spouse is under five feet tall and weighs about 90 pounds. She has no problem shooting up to 50 rounds or so, but after that she began complaining of pain in the heel of her palm. We believe this is due at least in part to the small and hard CT grip, and it's no doubt aggravated by the light weight of the revolver. But we want both maximum concealability and the laser, so... oh, well. My experience was similar, although my hands held out longer. After about 85 rounds, I was no longer comfortable.

    Based on our experience so far, I wouldn't recommend .357 for prolonged shooting. For a defensive load with adrenaline running high, five or ten rounds would probably be okay. I have NOT yet actually tried firing .357 through this snubby.

    Concealability is excellent, and the sights and laser work great. I am seriously considering buying another for myself, which is about as strong a recommendation as you can get I guess

    The only negative comment I have is that the trigger pull out of the box sucked. S&W are notorious for this, by the way. It had two rough spots and was harder than 14 pounds (I couldn't find a stronger measuring device)! Our gunsmith and friend smoothed everything and installed 8 pound competition springs, which made a tremendous difference. So... In addition to the price of the revolver, plan on another $60 or so for a trigger job.
    Last edited by CCMO; May 2nd, 2007 at 09:45 AM.

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    Senior Member Array Devone6's Avatar
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    I have to also ask, why buy a .357 if your are going to just shoot .38in it? Buy a model 637 in .38 with CTs, just as light and shoots +Ps (or .357, maybe a model 60 with a 2 1/8 inch barrel) and save a few hundred bucks!!

    But hey, your gonna pay for it, buy want you want.

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    Member Array austinguy23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by a_kayaker View Post
    I went with the 642 airweight without the CT grips. I found that the rubber grips tended to grab my shirt tail and reveal my CC rig. The CT's are cool, but I don't feel like they are worth the extra cost. IMHO.

    I replaced the CT's with a set of custom wood grips. They are slicker and the shirt just falls over them. The grips feel good and function well too.
    Interesting point about the grips. Do wood grips actually look good on this type of gun though? I'd love to see a pic if you have one...

  10. #9
    Ex Member Array Pete's Avatar
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    If any of you feel another model is better for any particular reason, please let me know.
    Are you against getting a Taurus?

    I have a nice Titanium/Scandium 85 that cost a lot less than you're saying that Smith will cost.

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    Member Array austinguy23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CCMO View Post
    3) Wanted the XS Express Big Dot 24/7 Tritium night front sight. We both love these sights. We have had them installed on all our defensive weapons, and this way I didn't have to figure out how to mount it 'cause S&W took care of it for me.
    4) Wanted the light weight of the alloy frame.

    Our gunsmith and friend smoothed everything and installed 8 pound competition springs, which made a tremendous difference. So... In addition to the price of the revolver, plan on another $60 or so for a trigger job.
    Very valuable info, CCMO! I'm not familiar with the XS Express Big Dot 24/7 Tritium sights. What's so special about them? Is that the one that will glow day or night unlike the HIVIZ which only glows if there is *some* light available to it? Why do you like it over the HIVIZ? Just curious...I don't have an opinion either way.

  12. #11
    Member Array austinguy23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CCMO View Post
    Our gunsmith and friend smoothed everything and installed 8 pound competition springs, which made a tremendous difference. So... In addition to the price of the revolver, plan on another $60 or so for a trigger job.
    I forgot to ask, what's special about "competition springs"?

  13. #12
    Member Array austinguy23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spiff_P239 View Post
    I have an M&P 340 on its way as we speak. It should show up tomorrow if I'm lucky. While it may be chambered for .357 Magnum, I will be carrying it with .38+P ammunition. Before ordering the revolver, I took a 340Sc for a test run. The Sc is 1.3 oz lighter than the M&P but recoil with Speer Gold Dots was very manageable. I put a couple rounds of Remington UMC .357 Magnum through it and it wasn't bad at all. While I definitely won't be shooting full-house loads, my guess is that it'll handle .38+P without a problem. I got a quote on this revolver without the laser grips and it was $629 shipped from SCP Firearms (www.scpfirearms.com). Add in about $150 as my guess for the grips and that would make it close to $800, well under the $1000 MSRP.
    That is a good deal. I didn't see one posted on their website though. Post some pics of your new baby when you get!

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    Member Array CCMO's Avatar
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    Austin,

    The XS sights do glow in the dark. What recommended them to me was a very intuitive quick acquisition design. The rear sight (on those weapons that HAVE a rear sight - the 340 does not) is a notch containing a narrow vertical tritium insert with a white outline. The front sight has a tritium "dot" with a white outline. To align on the target, all you do is "dot the i." With the snubby, all you do is line up the big dot on the target. The white outline works fine in daylight, the tritium works just as well in the dark, and my experience has been that target acquisition is exceptionally fast. The XS website has more propaganda on why their sight picture is better than others (such as HIVIZ). All I would add is that the XS claims about how well their sights work seem to match my experience! YMMV.

    Re: Wolff "competition" springs. The main thing they do for my spouse and for me is that they lightened up the trigger pull. My gunsmith gave me the original springs in the packaging for the new ones, and the packages said "competition." The pull is still not light by any means, but the original factory pull was terrible. The lighter pull and smoothed internal parts greatly improved the feel of the pull and make it easier to stay on target.

  15. #14
    Member Array Spiff_P239's Avatar
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    Here are the pics I promised:






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    Member Array austinguy23's Avatar
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    Man, that's slick! Thanks for the pics.

    By the way, I noticed on a gun shop's website that the owner stated "Unsafe - do not shoot" on all of his M&P Airweight guns. I thought it was odd since they were all listed as new, so I e-mailed him to ask about it. He responded "These guns were made with alloy cylinders and the unsafe to fire warning comes from Smith & Wesson itself."

    This blows me away. Did your S&W come with such a disclaimer/warning? I can't believe a gun manufacturer would sell a gun they consider unsafe or list as unsafe.


    http://www.collectorsfirearms.com/admin/search.php?textfield=m%26p+airweight

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