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Smith & Wesson M&P Pistols All Variants of the Smith & Wesson M&P Auto Series


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  #1  
Old 02-26-2012, 08:29 PM
cfr cfr is offline
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Greetings. Giving some thought to making the switch from a Gen 4 Glock 22 to the M&P .40. I really like the way it feels/ looks. However, googling something like "M&P rust" shows far more hits than I was expecting, even as recently as 2011.

I know I could send back in if needed, and S&W would take care of me. Still not something that sounds like much fun, just like I wouldnt rush out and buy a Gen 4 G19 while they're having lots of erratic ejections/ stovepipes either. Of course I also know that things get blown way out of proportion on the web.

What I cant find on the topic is if S&W knows what the issue is, and have made corrections to remedy the issues? I take pretty good care of my guns, but I have no desire to treat a combat pistol like a Diva in order to keep it from rusting.

Does anyone have the real skinny on this?
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:39 PM
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Seems unlikely, given that as I understand it, the metal parts of the pistol are stainless. Yeah, stainless can rust, too, but it usually has to be in a fairly extreme environment to do so.
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:50 PM
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I've owned 7 different M&P pistols and seen many more. Never seen rust on any of them.

If a gun gets rusty, that means it's not being taken care of IMO.
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:52 PM
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We have had several come back from customers due to rusting/oxidizing. It appears to be a poor batch of metalurgy as even though they are supposedly stainless, we have completely blasted them only to have them begin rusting within 2-3 days again.
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:56 PM
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Originally Posted by twogunjay View Post
We have had several come back from customers due to rusting/oxidizing. It appears to be a poor batch of metalurgy as even though they are supposedly stainless, we have completely blasted them only to have them begin rusting within 2-3 days again.
Are these recently produced guns?
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Old 02-26-2012, 09:06 PM
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You should not have to treat your M&P like a diva. Anything made of steel is not completely rust proof, but the M&P should hold up well. As far as the stories about them rusting, I'd like to see where. One thing about them, or Glocks is that the internal parts are not coated with the the manufacters' anti corrosion stuff like the slides. Those parts will rust. Expose a Glock to something really caustic such as blood for an extended period of time and see how much damage it does to the springs and levers. They have to be replaced. I imagine the M&P's the same way. As long as you don't store it in a bucket of sea water and clean it once every couple of years whether it needs it or not, you should be good. A friend of mine who claimed he had exessively caustic sweat to go with his caustic personality swore up and down that any gun he carried in an IWB rusted, including a Glock, but I never saw any evidence of his claims.

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Old 02-26-2012, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by walkin' trails View Post
As far as the stories about them rusting, I'd like to see where.
Do some googling, you'll see/ hear of many slides rusting. To be clear, Im really not trying to freak out any current owners, more hoping for some reassurance in making the switch.
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Old 02-26-2012, 09:25 PM
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I worked the gate at the jail in a rainstorm. Moron that I am, got distracted and put it on the shelf when I got home. It was dry & I didn't think about it. Three days later (I carry a 1911 off duty) I got it out, took it apart and didn't find anything out of the ordinary. A little Hoppe's and back to work with it. BUT, I won't make that mistake again!
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Old 02-26-2012, 10:03 PM
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Are these recently produced guns?
All different dates from 2.5 years ago to around 6 months ago. Some were marked stainless and some where not. We also wondered at first if it was a series of serial numbers but found that there was no commonality. One individual bought theirs new, never fired it, stored it in the safe and pulled it out a year later to find rust bubbles and pitting all over it. This customer has around 120 guns and stores them right. He has a beautiful custom home and no moisture issues. It is important to note that no other blued guns were rusted and after we stripped and bead blasted the gun, it continued to rust. This gun was marked stainless and no matter what we did (bead blast, coat with heavy oil, etc) it would continue to rust. It finally went back to Smith. They acknowledged there was a problem and sent out a new complete upper.
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Old 02-26-2012, 10:22 PM
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I currently own a half dozen M&P's and have never had issues with them rusting. I have heard of the phenomenon, but I have never seen it in person. My duty M&P has seen rain, snow, heat, humidity, sand, dirt and body sweat and has never rusted. Some days I am able to wipe it down with a CLP coated rag and other days it just lives in a Safariland holster.
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Old 02-26-2012, 10:54 PM
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Rusting is not a problem. Like it's been said, if it rusts, we usually have to do something exotic to it. I ONCE.... noticed a few specs of rust on the side, tip of my slide after wearing it IWB against my sweaty body for months into the summer. When I noticed it, I didn't come online or call S&W and whine about my SS slide rusting. I know what and why it happened, cleaned it, oiled it and haven't seen a spec on any of my M&P's since.

Is it possible a few slides had a problem, bad metal, improper handling... it happens. It doesn't make all M&P junk... really, look somewhere else for problems. The M&P is one of the finest guns in it's class. That's the real SKINNY... So stop acting like a Diva.. There isn't a rust issue, maintain your gun normally and you'll most likely never have a problem..
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Old 02-26-2012, 10:58 PM
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Originally Posted by twogunjay View Post
All different dates from 2.5 years ago to around 6 months ago. Some were marked stainless and some where not. We also wondered at first if it was a series of serial numbers but found that there was no commonality. One individual bought theirs new, never fired it, stored it in the safe and pulled it out a year later to find rust bubbles and pitting all over it. This customer has around 120 guns and stores them right. He has a beautiful custom home and no moisture issues. It is important to note that no other blued guns were rusted and after we stripped and bead blasted the gun, it continued to rust. This gun was marked stainless and no matter what we did (bead blast, coat with heavy oil, etc) it would continue to rust. It finally went back to Smith. They acknowledged there was a problem and sent out a new complete upper.
This is a bummer.
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Old 02-26-2012, 11:12 PM
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There isn't a rust issue, maintain your gun normally and you'll most likely never have a problem..
Some Glock fanboys also claim theres no issues with Gen4 G19's erratic ejections/ stovepipes, and that it's all due to limp wristing too.

My guess is that this issue, like in that issue, the web has blown it way out of proportion.

I really like the M&P -- more than my G22. This switch, based on these issues, is a scary proposition. Chances are you're right though, and that Id never likely have an issue.
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Old 02-26-2012, 11:18 PM
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My M&P40c has developed a couple small spots of rust on the slide several times, and it isn't due to lack of care. It's been because I carry IWB day in and day out, rain, snow, or shine, and the gun is exposed to sweat and the elements on a regular basis. A quick wipe down with an oil-impregnated cloth as soon as it's noticed, removes the rust easy enough. It's a gun. I don't baby it. The thought to send it back or to complain about it never really crossed my mind.
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Old 02-26-2012, 11:28 PM
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My Law Enforcement agency (150 Officers) just switched to Glock Gen 4 from M&P 40..A large number of them including mine rusted easily. We contacted Smith and they gave us all new slides. They said there was a problem with the melonite finish they put on them.
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Old 02-26-2012, 11:35 PM
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I have been carrying an issued M&P40C since April 2008 and even when exposed to rain I have not seen any rusting whatsoever. I have some co-workers that have had some pitting on their night sights but that is from failing to keep those clean and oiled. So far, the barrel and slide are spot free. I also have 3K+ rounds downrange in the M&P and the only noticeable wear is the chamber hood has some rub marks where it locks in and out of the slide when it cycles.

Needless-to-say I have been very impressed with the lack of wear on the pistol and that the melonite coated stainless seems impervious to rust from rain water. Although... I am not in an area that has salt spray or anything like that either.
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Old 02-27-2012, 12:06 AM
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Stainless steel parts can rust due to carbon steel being embedded during the manufacturing process. Carbon steel cutters will leave bits of steel behind. Blasting won't help. Dipping the parts in acid to "passivate" the surface is the solution.
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Old 02-27-2012, 12:29 AM
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My Law Enforcement agency (150 Officers) just switched to Glock Gen 4 from M&P 40..A large number of them including mine rusted easily. We contacted Smith and they gave us all new slides. They said there was a problem with the melonite finish they put on them.
Did S&W indicate if they had resolved the issue?
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Old 02-27-2012, 12:42 PM
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Every evening before bed I clear my weapon, inspect in and out with slide locked open, rotate ammo and reload, and wipe down with clp before placing back in carry holster. Also have two holsters in case one gets wet with sweat, rain, etc. so one can be drying out. This takes all of 2 minutes or less and I have never had even a carbon steel pistol rust. Not saying it can't happen! This has just served me well for over 25 years and gives me peace of mind that my equipment is always in good condition and ready should I ever need it.
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Old 02-27-2012, 01:46 PM
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I've heard leather holster's can promote rust? Has anyone found this to be the case?
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Old 02-27-2012, 02:23 PM
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I have been looking into switching to an M&P and don't believe the rust is much of a problem since the gun is guaranteed for life. I have also heard that the S&W customer support is very good. I have been considering The M&P and the very different Beretta 92 FS, but the Beretta's warranty and customer service have been challenged a lot lately so I am leaning towards the M&P.
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Old 02-27-2012, 03:34 PM
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The amazing thing about this issue is that it's lasted for 5 years. Most people have been told by S&W "yours was in a bad batch". Either that batch was really big, or S&W doesnt want to permanently fix the issue.
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Old 02-27-2012, 03:34 PM
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Seems to me that in every instance where the gun was sent back for any rust it was taken care of under warranty. Don't think I would be afraid of it.
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Old 02-27-2012, 04:23 PM
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Seems to me that in every instance where the gun was sent back for any rust it was taken care of under warranty. Don't think I would be afraid of it.
Very true -- every instance Ive read about indicated a good customer experience that resulted very quickly in a new slide.
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Old 02-27-2012, 05:05 PM
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I've heard leather holster's can promote rust? Has anyone found this to be the case?
They sure will. If you have a buscadero rig and leave shells in the loops they will turn green. I sold a Ruger Blackhawk for my neighbor. It had pits on the cylinder at 3 & 9:00, pits on the barrel below the sight and pits around the rear sight. This all from long term storage in leather.
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Old 02-28-2012, 01:14 AM
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weum817, why the switch to Glock?
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Old 02-28-2012, 02:48 AM
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We did an extensive T&E when we went to the M&P in 2008, it pretty much tied with the glock in our evaluations..since we already carried smith & wesson 4566's the M&P is what we went with. after 3 years we were looking for a new pistol. We had problems of the slide not locking back when empty, internal springs breaking, ambi slide release lever was easy to hit with support hand..which caused the sliver to tear off the slide starting at the slide stop notch on one pistol. I guess we just kinda lost faith in them. There are a few officers who wanted to keep them but for the most part we were ready to move on.
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Old 02-28-2012, 04:00 AM
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Stainless steel parts can rust due to carbon steel being embedded during the manufacturing process. Carbon steel cutters will leave bits of steel behind. Blasting won't help. Dipping the parts in acid to "passivate" the surface is the solution.
^^^^^^^ This ^^^^^^^

We use some of the finest stainless steel alloys at work, but if the parts are not passivated almost immediately after production, they will begin to rust, even in a relatively dry shop environment. It's possible that S&W may have had a problem with incomplete passivation on a batch or two of the slides or an outside processor may have had a QC issue.
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Old 02-28-2012, 06:22 PM
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I've seen some data that metal corrosion may develop as a result of some combinations of cleaners and lubricants used in maintaining the gun - one of the tests strongly suggests Eezox is the best defense - I have some coming in to check out, but no first-hand data to confirm or refute that. Try a search on Eezox to see some of the testing.
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Old 02-28-2012, 09:33 PM
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I had an XD that rusted after 6 months of daily IWB carry. Not a problem with my Glock 19, 3 years of daily IWB carry and 26,000 rounds, not much black left on the slide but no rust and no problems. I don't think it is a big deal really. I have heard a little about the M&Ps rusting but if mine does it is not a deal breaker. I am really liking this pistol.
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Old 02-29-2012, 12:42 AM
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Leather will rust guns and knives--even ones with good quality steel & steel alloys. I have had very expensive motor boat propellers rust around salt water--I wash them w/ fresh water under high pressure, hand dry them or even occasionally use superfine wet sandpaper on them.

Usually, unless it's very poor quality steel, light surface rust getting worse can be prevented or arrested if it hasn't gotten out of hand. Commercially available Boeshield T-9 was designed by Boeing Aviation as a corrosion inhibitor for aircraft components and is excellent stuff for preventing rust--its like HD40 on mega steroids--we usually pack a spray can or two. Most marine shops stock it--good to have in the garage.

If rust has gone too far, then you're probably out of luck---like they say: 'rust never sleeps'.

Only metal I have that seems TRULY rust proof regardless of treatment is on knives made of dendritic cobalt steel--I always have one DCS knife on me when going on extended outdoor journeys. Dendritic colbalt steel knives have no magnetic signature, but I don't know of any guns made of that expensive steel--it might not be hard enough, although I'll bet David Boye, who's made some of my DCS knives, could manage it--but the FAA would hate it! H1 steel is the next best thing for rust resistance.

I wipe my guns, knives and other gear down if they've gotten wet and if they're wet from salt, including sweat, I carefully clean them with fresh water and in all cases, dry them. It only takes a couple minutes.

The most rust proof guns I have ever seen are Glocks. They have a hard time TRYING to make them rust--Glocks have survived some ridiculous torture tests. They have pulled Glocks out of lakes, creeks and rivers after more than a year, even soaked them in brine and while they might have some light oxidization (rust), the damn things still fired!

My every day carry stateside is an M&P (although I have several old and new Glocks, Sigs, HK, etc), but until 10 or 15 years have gone by and proven to me the M&P's are as durable as the Glocks-- if I'm taking ONLY one hand gun into the wilderness for a a long period, I hate to admit it, but it'd still be a Glock.

The M&P has never let me down and I like how it feels and shoots better than my Glock, but time is the true judge. I have never had a gun that I can shoot so accurately without fully sighting--I'm rather accurate by merely just fully extending my arm, looking down it as I point and then shooting with an M&P--very ergonomically friendly.

We'll see just how well the M&P's hold up over time, before I think about taking it deep into the middle of nowhere, which includes desolate ocean islands, with some people on them who have an intense dislike of Americans!

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Old 03-02-2012, 10:55 AM
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I know that if I owned an M&P that rusted, S&W would take care of me with a new slide. However, does anyone know what the difference between the first and second slide would be? I haven't read of anyones second slide rusting, but am also unclear as to what the difference between the two would be?
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Old 03-02-2012, 12:07 PM
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I know that if I owned an M&P that rusted, S&W would take care of me with a new slide. However, does anyone know what the difference between the first and second slide would be? I haven't read of anyones second slide rusting, but am also unclear as to what the difference between the two would be?
Nothing, they all learned how to maintain a gun....
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Old 03-02-2012, 12:33 PM
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I don't want to bore anybody with the details but I am one of the lucky few that did have to send their M&P back due to rust, twice! But I will say that they took care of me both times and the last time it came back the slide's finish did look different from the first two. It was surface rust from where the gun was contacting the plastic of the holsters I was using. First holster was, ironically enough, a Glock Sport/Combat holster and the 2nd was a home-made Raven Phantom knock-off. Both wore the finish off the slide at an alarming rate and rusted within hours of wearing it.

After getting the gun back for the last time I finally got my real Raven Phantom and the next thing you know all things are cured. What the initial problem was is hard to say. My M&P9 was the 4.25" Pro with night sites so it's possible that it just hit a bad batch.

I will say that I genuinely love the M&P pistols; I own 2 now and they have completely replaced my Glocks and for those that know me, that is a huge endorsement. I did a 2-day pistol course, Combat Focus Shooting developed by Rob Pincus, and brought the M&P9 to use. It did 1100+ rounds in 2 days with only the initial 7-point lube at the beginning of the first day. Ran like a top; only 2 failure to extract and they both turned out to be some pretty crappy range pick-up brass reloads that I didn't catch while reloading them. M&P9 is now up to over 2,000 rounds in a year and my M&P45 is my daily carry and IDPA gun, too. Simply love the M&P
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Old 03-02-2012, 01:53 PM
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Sometimes just a little tweak and change and results are different. I noticed with my 40fs back about 1 1\2 years ago after about 6 moths of owning it, a bit of rust on the frt of the slide where the holster wore the finish off. I didn't freak, I grabbed my trusty little bottle of Militec-1 oil rubbed it into the spot until the rust was gone. Since then, during the hot ugly summer, I pay a little more attention to it and rub a drop or 2 onto the slide when I'm sitting there tinkering with my toy.

If someone is having continual trouble with rusting, oil it, if that doesn't work, find the right oil.
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Old 03-02-2012, 05:00 PM
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So I did some more googling, this time to see how many police and military forces are using the M&P these days. HOLY ****, I simply had no idea how many folks were using this gun. This puts into perspective the large amounts of rust reports. I knew the gun had gotten more attention in recent years, but not like this. Lots of guns = lots of rust. This would be like the large number of Glock kabooms... because theres millions of them out there.

Feeling much better about it now -- now I need to get my wife to sign off on it. As much as she doesnt like me buying guns, she really HATES me selling guns, and owning both just isnt an option right now. Wish me luck!
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Old 03-02-2012, 05:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DustyDawg48 View Post
I don't want to bore anybody with the details but I am one of the lucky few that did have to send their M&P back due to rust, twice! But I will say that they took care of me both times and the last time it came back the slide's finish did look different from the first two. It was surface rust from where the gun was contacting the plastic of the holsters I was using. First holster was, ironically enough, a Glock Sport/Combat holster and the 2nd was a home-made Raven Phantom knock-off. Both wore the finish off the slide at an alarming rate and rusted within hours of wearing it.

After getting the gun back for the last time I finally got my real Raven Phantom and the next thing you know all things are cured. What the initial problem was is hard to say. My M&P9 was the 4.25" Pro with night sites so it's possible that it just hit a bad batch.

I will say that I genuinely love the M&P pistols; I own 2 now and they have completely replaced my Glocks and for those that know me, that is a huge endorsement. I did a 2-day pistol course, Combat Focus Shooting developed by Rob Pincus, and brought the M&P9 to use. It did 1100+ rounds in 2 days with only the initial 7-point lube at the beginning of the first day. Ran like a top; only 2 failure to extract and they both turned out to be some pretty crappy range pick-up brass reloads that I didn't catch while reloading them. M&P9 is now up to over 2,000 rounds in a year and my M&P45 is my daily carry and IDPA gun, too. Simply love the M&P
Hey glad to see you hear Dusty Dog.
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Old 03-02-2012, 11:09 PM
Rubikees Rubikees is offline
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I had a couple of rust pits show up on my M&P9. I buffed it our and did not have any problems after that. However, since I had a bit of a buff spot it gave me an excuse to get it recoated. I had a friend give the slide a Titanium powder coat. Slide looks nice in gun metal blue and so far no rust from the Houston climate.
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Old 03-02-2012, 11:51 PM
DustyDawg48 DustyDawg48 is offline
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Hey glad to see you hear Dusty Dog.
Hey! I guess you got the M&P fever bad now! lol see you tomorrow, I'm ready to do shooting!
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Old 03-03-2012, 02:41 AM
S. Kelly S. Kelly is offline
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weum817, we T&E'd the M&P40 against the 4th gen G22 to replace our 3rd gen G22/23/27s. The M&P broke down during the first mag and once thereafter. The G22 went 8000 rounds without cleaning and had no issues. We're staying with Glock.
I've had 1 G19 that had rust pits all over the slide-don't know what caused it, but it was horrible. I also ran into a M&P40c that rusted all over the slide in a dealer's case. Overnight. Sometimes metals just rust, something gets on them and causes a reaction.
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Old 03-04-2012, 06:46 PM
customizedcreationz customizedcreationz is offline
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We have seen several M&P's new in boxes and older models with slight rust on them.

How many? Probably a good 50 or so over the years.

But since we refinish, obviously I am going to see more then the average person will.

Thanks
Todd
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Old 03-04-2012, 06:58 PM
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My M&P40 got some rust on the slide once. I went shooting in the rain at a covered outdoor range. The case apparently got some moisture in it that I didn't realize. Anyway, I didn't take the gun out of the case for about two weeks. When I did, it had some rust on the slide. I was able to get it off in time. They're pretty tough.
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Old 01-19-2017, 01:03 AM
Wutikrai Wutikrai is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turbo38gn View Post
Rusting is not a problem. Like it's been said, if it rusts, we usually have to do something exotic to it. I ONCE.... noticed a few specs of rust on the side, tip of my slide after wearing it IWB against my sweaty body for months into the summer. When I noticed it, I didn't come online or call S&W and whine about my SS slide rusting. I know what and why it happened, cleaned it, oiled it and haven't seen a spec on any of my M&P's since.

Is it possible a few slides had a problem, bad metal, improper handling... it happens. It doesn't make all M&P junk... really, look somewhere else for problems. The M&P is one of the finest guns in it's class. That's the real SKINNY... So stop acting like a Diva.. There isn't a rust issue, maintain your gun normally and you'll most likely never have a problem..
Absolutely agree.
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  #44  
Old 01-21-2017, 03:05 PM
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Slight bit of rust on my FS slide. Stuck in the safe, in a leather holster that may have had a little sweat still in it. Probably sat there's for a week or two before I looked at it. It was very minor. Cleaned it and put a little extra lube on the area, and have never seen it again, but I can say it does happen, and I'm more diligent about keeping it clean and lightly coated.
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Old 01-21-2017, 03:10 PM
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double post

Last edited by Slingn; 01-21-2017 at 03:11 PM.
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  #46  
Old 01-21-2017, 03:23 PM
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Hmmm, five year old thread, I'd imagine, S&W has this squared away by now.
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Old 02-14-2017, 05:11 PM
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The old post has been revived! Almost 3 years ago my dept. traded in our M&P's for a newer version. I guess you could call it an M&P 1.5 since they are up to 2.0 now! The newer version has a PVD finish on the metal, a "Tactile Reset" trigger and a notched rear sight that allows for easier 1 handed clearing of malfunctions and cycling of the slide. Not that the pistols have malfunctions but we are training to clear them with one hand and weak handed.

I stayed with the 40C as my issued side arm and am still very happy with the concealability of the pistol when working in plain clothes and off duty. When working in uniform I'll carry 3 15-round magazines and keep an X grip sleeve on the one inserted in the pistol. For me, it's still the best of both worlds being able to accurately shoot a compact that I can carry whenever and wherever. And it's lighter than a full size.

Back to the rusting issue, we did have a number of slides rust back in 2012 but that was after we worked a week long event with 12+ hour shifts outside with a ton of rain. Some people didn't think to clean their guns afterwards and the Safariland duty holsters we wear have a suede lining. Needless to say, the moisture was trapped and even the Melonite coated stainless steel began to pit! If officers and range staff couldn't clean the rust off we sent the slides back and they were replaced at no charge.
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