The quest is finally over. The search for a new carry started about five months ago here on easybake; New Gun Search Problems and New Carry Search Solved.
I settled on the Smith and Wesson M&P Shield 9mm. I should have had one when they first came out, but a poor decision at the gun show meant I would have to wait until now. I know, typically bad decisions at a gun show mean spending too much or leaving with something you didn’t intend to, but that isn’t how this trip worked. One of the dealers had several; a few in .40 and a few in 9mm. Unaware of how popular they were going to be I assumed that I could get a better price. Since I not much of a haggler, Mike offered to help. When we were finally able to get someone’s attention, the conversation went something like this:
Mike: How much is the Shield?
Mike: How much is it really?
Mike: No room at all?
Mike: So $450 is the best you can do?
Mike: Okay, nice talking to you.
Dealer: No reply.
So I spent the next few weeks checking in at all my local gun stores, asking if they had one in, or one coming in soon, and how much they were selling them for; a lot of grins and no’s and mostly selling in the area of $600. So I started calling and emailing some not quite local gun stores with pretty much the same replies. With each rejection I was reminded, by so called friends, that I could have had one already; at $450 no less. I expanded the search to gun broker sites and anywhere else online I could find. This just added the frustration of stores that listed them knowing they were back-ordered (but were perfectly willing to take my money now of course) and people on broker sites that got theirs early and were now selling them for huge mark-ups; I saw them for as much as $650 before any extra fees.
I had given the search a break for a few weeks when Jason found two 9mm’s on craigslist at Arizona Tactical, I bought it and had it shipped to Florida. Maybe with all the commotion of everyone scrambling for ammo they stopped buying all the Shields they could find; I don’t know. It cost me more than it would have at the gun show a few months ago, but after all the looking and waiting I was ready to have my new gun now. The wait was over right? Nope. I bought it the day before a trip to Mexico. Bad enough that I couldn’t have it right away, but I got an email saying it had arrived with still a few days left before I returned. As much fun as I was having in Mexico, I was still talking about it constantly. I’m sure, to the boredom most of my friends on that trip as they are not gun owners and don’t understand the misery of having a new gun waiting for you; let alone one that took months to get.
So I get home late on Sunday, and drag my sorry butt to work waiting to leave so I can go to the range and get my Shield. About 10 minutes after getting home, Jason, Vlady, and I are on our way to the range. To make this better, there were two more new guns, the S&W M&P15 and the Steyr AUG I had yet to shoot coming also. Now, of course, Tim at our local store has to mess with me and extend the agony. Are you sure it’s here? I don’t see it. You said it’s a Shield right? Yeah. Funny. Give me my gun now please.
About two hundred rounds later and after carrying it for a few days… this gun is worth the wait. The trigger is great. It conceals great making it a great carry; could even be a pocket carry. It’s easy to fire and easy on the recoil. It’s very accurate at 10 – 15 yards and decently accurate at 25 yards. I fully understand why they were so difficult to find now.
I definitely got the right gun.