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Old 03-09-2015, 10:22 AM
db4570 db4570 is offline
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Default Continuing major problems with Bodyguard 380

A couple months I posted ago about some issues I was having with my BG380: occasional failure to feed, light strikes, failure of the slide to lock back, auto forwarding.

This is a recent model, no laser. I am using inexpensive but name brand ball. I have over 30 years of shooting experience, am not limp wristing, clean and lube the gun and mags thoroughly and correctly.

I sent it back to S&W and they replaced the firing pin and slide latch, and polished the ramp. Great customer service, BTW.

I got it back, put a few mags through it, everything worked fine except it still auto forwarded, and the slide didn't latch back once. I figured I could live with that.

Yesterday I went back to the range with it and in about 4 mags had one failure to fire and one stovepipe. This was different ammo than I had used before, but still decent stuff: Speer Lawman FMJ.

I am going to try sending it back one more time, but right now I have ZERO confidence in this gun. I really want it to work, because there is nothing else with the characteristics I want that can replace it. Plus, I like it.

David
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Old 03-09-2015, 10:40 AM
N4KVE N4KVE is offline
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It sucks to hear stories like this, because the small pocket 380's are what many people carry to prevent robberies, etc. If a gun doesn't work 100%, it can't be trusted, so why should we carry it. When I work the gun shows for my boss, the 2 pocket guns I recommend the most are the BG, & the LCP. I don't even mention the Keltec unless the customer asks. It's sad that this happens, & even if they fix it, I would never trust it until I wasted hundreds of $ of ammo to test it. Another gun [LCP] would be cheaper. Good luck to you sir. GARY
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Old 03-09-2015, 11:02 AM
Rpg Rpg is offline
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I'd send it back to S&W, give them another chance to fix it then get rid of it.

I would be unwilling to use it for sd: I simply would have no confidence in such a firearm.
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Old 03-09-2015, 11:19 AM
unclebob unclebob is offline
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It's too bad there are way too many stories like this about a trusted company!!
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Old 03-09-2015, 11:23 AM
CaptRon956 CaptRon956 is offline
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did you ever take the magazines apart & clean them as well? A lot of problems with this pistol has been contributed to a sticky mag follower. with the slide forward insert a empty magazine and watch the slide lock. What does it do? It moves up. The magazine spring applies the tension to the slide lock and if you have a sticky follower or weak spring that may cause the faiulres your describing. I would take the mags apart & with a toothbrush use some gun cleaner & brush the soot off the plastic mag follower and insides of the magazine and wipe dry...
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Old 03-09-2015, 02:59 PM
Rickgus Rickgus is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by db4570 View Post

I am going to try sending it back one more time, but right now I have ZERO confidence in this gun. I really want it to work, because there is nothing else with the characteristics I want that can replace it. Plus, I like it.

David
David - I also responded to your first post, as did Capt Ron. He has pointed out to several the importance of cleaning the magazines. Don't know if that will solve all your problems, but take them apart and see if a cleaning will help. My problems with the BG was ammo issues and it took my LGS showing me that it wasn't the pistol at all, it was a certain brand of ammo creating the problems. I understand your feeling of having no confidence in the BG and if the pistol comes back with the same problems maybe you should move on to something else. My first range trip with the BG, I was very disappointed, as I too liked the features the BG offered, but the BG was failing in one way or the other. Just changing brands of ammo has given me more hope in it becoming a "keeper" for us. It is a shame some of us have to go thru this process, but, apparently with the smaller pocket pistols, that is the "nature of the beast!" I also have an LCP that has never given me any issues! That's the way we all want our purchases for SD to go!

Good luck David! Let us know what comes of the second return! - Rick
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Old 03-09-2015, 03:10 PM
Abflyboy Abflyboy is offline
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I have had similar issues with my Glock 42. Long story short, much of the available ammunition is not running at SD velocity and won't fully cycle the slide 100%.

The G42 and BG are both designed primarily as SD pistols and have heavier recoil springs installed which will cause issues with some of the 'plinker' loads that we practice with.

I hate having trust issues with a firearm that was purchased for SD duty and it will probably take a few thousand rounds with zero malfunctions before I decide to EDC my G42. If it keeps giving me fits, it's gone.
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Old 03-09-2015, 03:38 PM
mafbloggerdanny mafbloggerdanny is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abflyboy View Post
I have had similar issues with my Glock 42. Long story short, much of the available ammunition is not running at SD velocity and won't fully cycle the slide 100%.

The G42 and BG are both designed primarily as SD pistols and have heavier recoil springs installed which will cause issues with some of the 'plinker' loads that we practice with.

I hate having trust issues with a firearm that was purchased for SD duty and it will probably take a few thousand rounds with zero malfunctions before I decide to EDC my G42. If it keeps giving me fits, it's gone.
I have had similar issues with G42. I decided to go with the G42 over the BG380 for a couple reasons. For one was not looking for CCW as the primary role. already had a shield for ccw. was actually looking at 380 because i wanted something softer shooting than 9mm and the G42 is larger than other 380's. The other deciding fact was reading threads like this, about people having problems with the BG380. Light primer strikes, FTF, FTE, pins walking themselves out.

When it comes to full size M&Ps I think S&W can beat Glock pound-for-pound. Equal reliability with superior ergos. However, Smith and Wesson's 380 offering just isn't as well refined as Glock.

That said, I have been disappointed with the G42 too. The spring is just too heavy. I understand you want something that will allow you to use hot self defense rounds and not beat the gun up too much, but someone REALLY needs to come out with a lower lb. spring for people that want to use target rounds or reloads.

It's really annoying when I can buy 8 different types of .380 loads from different manufacturers and only 4 or 5 of them will cycle in the gun.

I have been waiting for Galloway Precision to come out with new lower # recoil spring assemblies but I think they're still working on them. Who knows if they will ever see the light of day. It's a tough world for 380. Part of me wishes I had gone Sig P238.
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Old 03-09-2015, 05:23 PM
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I'm sorry to hear about your problems w/the M&P .380. I've had mine about a month now and took it to the range for the second time today, about 100 rounds of ball ammo. No problems and the more I shoot this gun the more I like it. My G42 was a disaster, every kind of malfunction you can name. Ruger LCP & KelTec same thing, w/the exception of the KelTec .32, which I foolishly sold.
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Old 03-09-2015, 08:44 PM
lmacrichter lmacrichter is offline
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I had all the problems you have plus a few more. Sent it back to S&W and when they said it was fixed I traded it on a P238. Haven't had a problem in the world since except finding ammo. 380 seems to be in short supply in central Al right now unless you want to pay the higher GS prices.
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Old 03-09-2015, 10:47 PM
db4570 db4570 is offline
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Quote:
did you ever take the magazines apart & clean them as well? A lot of problems with this pistol has been contributed to a sticky mag follower.
Thanks for that suggestion, CaptRon956 and Rickgus.

Before this latest issue I took your advice and cleaned them thoroughly, and they were a bit gunky.

I also very lightly oiled them with my normal gun oil, Lubriplate. I got mixed advice on whether to lube them or not. I had never lubed a mag before, so I figured I'd try it. It's a very thin film I can barely feel. They seemed to operate very slick after that.

What do you guys think? Lube or dry?

David
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Old 03-09-2015, 10:50 PM
db4570 db4570 is offline
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It's an interesting theory that the target rounds might not be quite powerful enough for guaranteed cycling.

If I knew that it would only malfunction while using cheap(ish) target ammo, it wouldn't bother me that much. Because for carry I'll be shooting high-end stuff.

Because of the cost, I have only put a couple mags of my carry ammo, Hydroshoks, through it. It ran fine on them, but it was only a sample of 15-20 rounds. I don't want to run $200 worth of high-end ammo through my $300 gun just to decide whether to keep it or not.

(Oddly, the 380 Hydroshoks are labeled "Low Recoil", which normally would be something I'd avoid, assuming that would also mean less powerful. But the ballistics for them are right up with everyone else's.)

Although I'm willing to try to standardize on an ammo that will be 100% reliable, it doesn't seem right. I never had to with my LCP. Or my CS9, or 92F, for that matter.

IMO, a finicky gun is an unreliable gun.

David
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Old 03-09-2015, 10:59 PM
CaptRon956 CaptRon956 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by db4570 View Post
Thanks for that suggestion, CaptRon956 and Rickgus.

Before this latest issue I took your advice and cleaned them thoroughly, and they were a bit gunky.

I also very lightly oiled them with my normal gun oil, Lubriplate. I got mixed advice on whether to lube them or not. I had never lubed a mag before, so I figured I'd try it. It's a very thin film I can barely feel. They seemed to operate very slick after that.

What do you guys think? Lube or dry?

David
I clean my magazines out and brush the red plastic follower with a toothbrush & get them real clean and just wipe them down, I see no problem with applying a lube but I would be very conservative with it, maybe use a silicon coated cloth & wipe everything down after cleaning.

I hope that fixes you up, Its a great gun, it's just a lil' picky about being dirty... Go grab a couple boxes of ammo and go to the range & let us know how it went.. As a matter of fact, I think I'll head out to my range tomorrow with my M&P 380!

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Old 03-10-2015, 07:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptRon956 View Post
I clean my magazines out and brush the red plastic follower with a toothbrush & get them real clean and just wipe them down, I see no problem with applying a lube but I would be very conservative with it, maybe use a silicon coated cloth & wipe everything down after cleaning.

I hope that fixes you up, Its a great gun, it's just a lil' picky about being dirty... Go grab a couple boxes of ammo and go to the range & let us know how it went.. As a matter of fact, I think I'll head out to my range tomorrow with my M&P 380!
I think it's obvious this gun has more issues than the magazine. After cleaning and oiling them, I still got the stovepipe and light strike. I don't see how even the worst magazine could cause those particular issues, anyway.

This gun has serious issues, and while I'll make one more attempt to deal with them, I'm not going to make excuses for it. This is totally unacceptable, and S&W should be ashamed. This is not some notorious cheap '70s Jennings or something; it is a premier American brand with a general reputation for excellent quality.

David
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Old 03-10-2015, 08:06 AM
Rickgus Rickgus is offline
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Wouldn't it be nice if we could rate product satisfaction like we do with rating Netflix movies, Ebay feedbacks and service companies requesting that we complete their customer surveys so that they might in turn improve those areas where they are falling short? Other than providing a return shipping label to return a product to S&W, what have they done to make their product and service better? Come on people, we're not dealing with products purchased from Walmart. We're dealing with purchases for self defense and personal protection. This is a company whose reputation for quality has always been "second to none" but that was the past. I not hearing that anymore! Consumers like David (DB4570) are giving the company a second chance to make this right. If that doesn't happen, he WILL move on! Now where is the product loyalty? Gone to another manufacturer, that's where! Good luck David! It is unacceptable!
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Old 03-10-2015, 07:07 PM
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Default You'll Get A Replacement/ CALL

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Originally Posted by Rpg View Post
I'd send it back to S&W, give them another chance to fix it then get rid of it.

I would be unwilling to use it for sd: I simply would have no confidence in such a firearm.
From my own history with S&W customer service, considering you've sent it back once and still have problems__the secret words you used ___you can't trust it___will apt to get you a replacement pistol.
You may just have gotten one assembled by someone that didn't learn well during the instruction period after hiring.
G'luck.
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Old 03-10-2015, 07:22 PM
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Default A Good Gun and Good Ammo Counts

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Originally Posted by mafbloggerdanny View Post
I have had similar issues with G42. I decided to go with the G42 over the BG380 for a couple reasons. For one was not looking for CCW as the primary role. already had a shield for ccw. was actually looking at 380 because i wanted something softer shooting than 9mm and the G42 is larger than other 380's. The other deciding fact was reading threads like this, about people having problems with the BG380. Light primer strikes, FTF, FTE, pins walking themselves out.

When it comes to full size M&Ps I think S&W can beat Glock pound-for-pound. Equal reliability with superior ergos. However, Smith and Wesson's 380 offering just isn't as well refined as Glock.

That said, I have been disappointed with the G42 too. The spring is just too heavy. I understand you want something that will allow you to use hot self defense rounds and not beat the gun up too much, but someone REALLY needs to come out with a lower lb. spring for people that want to use target rounds or reloads.

It's really annoying when I can buy 8 different types of .380 loads from different manufacturers and only 4 or 5 of them will cycle in the gun.

I have been waiting for Galloway Precision to come out with new lower # recoil spring assemblies but I think they're still working on them. Who knows if they will ever see the light of day. It's a tough world for 380. Part of me wishes I had gone Sig P238.
I have a nephew in N. Idaho that has a Sig P238 and has had no issues and it drives tacks. I have the Sig P232. No problems but
only keep it "someplace" in the house, not for packing. (Have Shield for that) I do keep my P232 loaded with Buffalo Bore's 100gr, flat nosed +P stuff. It fires them well.
Buffalo's sales pitch for them (on BB's site) is pretty persuasive.
I like the bullet style being the same as used in big game ammo.
G'luck and stay safe.

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Old 03-10-2015, 07:50 PM
CaptRon956 CaptRon956 is offline
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Sounds like you could use a new recoil spring & a new (or heavier) hammer spring. Both are easily replaced and available at Galloway.
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Old 03-10-2015, 07:51 PM
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Really sorry to hear this. I have to laser-less BG model and it has been flawless. I know what you're going through BTW as I had an LC9 that had the same type of issues. Ruger finally got it right after I sent it back to the 3 times but boy did I lose confidence in the gun. I ultimately traded it in for the Shield 9.
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Old 03-10-2015, 08:32 PM
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I have a pair of Glock 42's and although they both have worked at the range I still have this gut feeling of doubt that if I ever have to depend on it will it take care of me.

I guess all the negative posts on the BG and Glock does not give you a warm feeling of trust. Both manufacturers are top notch and you wonder why have so many iffy .380's out there. Where the engineers and testing people before these guns we're let loose?
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Old 03-10-2015, 08:47 PM
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DB I work at a LGS and we have sold these for a few years now, I have seen more people come back with the same if not similar issues. My 2 cents and what I can figure is that these guns are really finicky on ammo and from what I see up here in beantown we are kind of limited with ammo choices. We do not see too much speer ammo up here but what is successful in these is Magtech Hollow point 380 and Federal champion ammo. Just a couple of suggestions. Short action ammo= higher pressure for functionality. Also a very good slide lube as this gun is gritty feeling as it is also helps. Good luck

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Old 03-10-2015, 10:12 PM
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DB I work at a LGS and we have sold these for a few years now, I have seen more people come back with the same if not similar issues. My 2 cents and what I can figure is that these guns are really finicky on ammo and from what I see up here in beantown we are kind of limited with ammo choices. We do not see too much speer ammo up here but what is successful in these is Magtech Hollow point 380 and Federal champion ammo. Just a couple of suggestions. Short action ammo= higher pressure for functionality. Also a very good slide lube as this gun is gritty feeling as it is also helps. Good luck

Pete

I've been shooting .380's since the early 90's and I can tell you guys with confidence that small pistols can be very finicky with ammo in addition they dont like to get dirty either. I've heard from others that the G42 is very picky on ammo. The BG380 seems to do well with most major brands but I can tell you that it does not like to get dirty at all. 150-200 rounds at the range is all it takes before the buildup of soot can start causing hangups...
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Old 03-10-2015, 11:52 PM
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I've been shooting .380's since the early 90's and I can tell you guys with confidence that small pistols can be very finicky with ammo in addition they dont like to get dirty either.
Capt. Ron, I really appreciate your advice, but I can tell you with confidence that my Ruger LCP ate everything I fed it without a single incident. This also seems to be the overwhelming consensus about that gun. So the cheap, homely little Ruger eats anything you put through it like a goat, but the iconic S&W can't figure it out?

You also said:

Quote:
Sounds like you could use a new recoil spring & a new (or heavier) hammer spring. Both are easily replaced and available at Galloway.
I'll be d***ed if I start rebuilding my defective brand new pistol with aftermarket parts at my own expense to try to achieve what the S&W experts can't do.

And, no, I don't think sticky mags are causing it to stovepipe or light strike.

Capt. Ron, it seems like you are unwilling to consider that there is actually something wrong with this gun. Sometimes one has to admit that maybe their favorite brand might have a flawed model.

David
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Old 03-11-2015, 12:10 AM
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DB,

First, Speer Lawman is not a trash ammo, so failures with it should be considered a problem, as you have. You tested with mid-high end range ammo, so enough said.

Send it back again, give them excruciating detail, including ammo brands.
On return, Shoot it again.
If it fails, send it back again, get all the paperwork together, and sell it fresh out of the return box.

Why do I say this? If you fire a round that fails, you can't sell it to the next guy with an honest statement that it works. If it came back, but you don't try it, you can say it is just back from repairs without lying.

I will confess I have a shield that went back 4 times before it came back 100%. But I am a maniac about getting what I bought, so I was more persistent than most. It cost me 2400 rounds of 9mm to get where I expected to be at 400, but it did help my rusty shooting skills. Yes, if you don't trust it, don't carry it, and tell the CS folks that. It does make a difference.
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Old 03-11-2015, 12:28 AM
Iwant2shootlikehickock45 Iwant2shootlikehickock45 is offline
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I am looking for a .380 and plan to go with the dig p238. Seen way to many online posts about the bg and glock42 having problems. Anyone watch hicock45s review of the bg. He had two of them and they both were light striking.
Spend the extra money and get the sigp238 that's what I plan to do
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Old 03-11-2015, 05:50 AM
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Angry

I have had it with this BG platform! I own four other S&W MP models and have never had problems like this -

First the original BG with the infamous Insight laser which was so bad, S&W replaced it with the newer MP model -

Defective *** BG 380 - S&W CS To The Rescue!

My MP version seemed to be an improvement at first, then lately I start getting the light strike syndrome, and it's been getting progressively worse, no matter which type of factory ammo I use. In fact, yesterday at the range it wouldn't ignite a single round of Sellier & Beloit. I realize these mouse guns are ammo sensitive, but geez, there is not a lot of factory 380 out there to choose from.

It's on its way to S&W now and when I get it back I'm gonna trade it in for an LCP - which I should have got in the first place. Not gonna waste any time or money on night sights or a Galloway trigger on this failed SD platform that you can't depend to go bang when you pull the trigger. And it sure as hell is not a range gun, so what good is it other than a paperweight?!! Enough is enough!!
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Old 03-11-2015, 04:38 PM
CaptRon956 CaptRon956 is offline
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Originally Posted by db4570 View Post
Capt. Ron, I really appreciate your advice, but I can tell you with confidence that my Ruger LCP ate everything I fed it without a single incident. This also seems to be the overwhelming consensus about that gun. So the cheap, homely little Ruger eats anything you put through it like a goat, but the iconic S&W can't figure it out?

You also said:



I'll be d***ed if I start rebuilding my defective brand new pistol with aftermarket parts at my own expense to try to achieve what the S&W experts can't do.

And, no, I don't think sticky mags are causing it to stovepipe or light strike.

Capt. Ron, it seems like you are unwilling to consider that there is actually something wrong with this gun. Sometimes one has to admit that maybe their favorite brand might have a flawed model.

David

Hey, first off I dont know how old your pistol is, the # of rounds it had, how you take care of it etc. All I know is there are thousands of happy BG 380 owners out there that dont need to get on a forum to complain about their pistol and the ones who unfortunatley do have a issue come online looking for a solution and it gives the impression of a large scale issue, there is no mass problem with these guns. I carry my BG380 every day and I would stake my life on it.
S&W makes thousands of BG380's each year. Like anything else that's mass produced you're gonna find a few lemons... jeez, if you're not happy with the pistol send it back & they will fix it, that is what a warranty is for. Use it. But it's not going to magically fix itself by lowballing S&W on the foums.

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Old 03-11-2015, 05:07 PM
bg1111 bg1111 is offline
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Just my 2 cents. I've had the same problems with my BG380 and several trips back to CS. Seems to work now and I'm confident with it. Don't know if shooting it more could make it more reliable or worse.

I've shot 380's back to the early 80's and never had any problems after thousands of rounds of everything. Didn't have special self defense loads back then, just hardball. Earlier 380's though aren't as small as the ones now. Maybe it's not possible to mass produce these small 380's and just put 10 rounds through them for a test and expect them to work. If that's the case, they shouldn't sell them as people are depending their lives on them.
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Old 03-11-2015, 05:23 PM
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i have an lcp, flawless function. know several people with bg380's and g42's. not a lot of happy with either. can't say i recommend either any more. don't recommend the lcp either. the keltec p32 is the best of the tiny options as far as i can tell. just gotta find .32 ammo for 'em. that said, i find myself with my 442 more and more as back up. love my lcp for several reasons, but it IS still a .380. my 442 has the 158 gr. hornady xtp load, and i feel that is the better option for me. to bad i hear so many stories about S&W's lack of quality, and lack of confidence in the product...
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Old 03-11-2015, 05:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Iwant2shootlikehickock45 View Post
I am looking for a .380 and plan to go with the dig p238. Seen way to many online posts about the bg and glock42 having problems. Anyone watch hicock45s review of the bg. He had two of them and they both were light striking.
Spend the extra money and get the sigp238 that's what I plan to do
Hickock45's G42 was flawless, btw
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Old 03-12-2015, 07:23 PM
db4570 db4570 is offline
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I talked to S&W's service guy yesterday, and he seemed a bit concerned about my situation. It is going back to S&W as soon as I can get it boxed up and dropped off at the Fed Ex station on the other side of the county.

I keep thinking about this gun. It's interesting that the Ruger LCP will eat anything, but it can't handle +Ps. The Smith doesn't seem to like basic target ammo, but can handle +P.

This makes me wonder if they are calibrated differently, and there might be a tradeoff. For instance, I would love to test 200 rounds of my carry ammo through the gun and see if I get zero malfunctions, but at $1.50 a shot... ain't gonna happen. So I have been using basic target ammo as my volume round to see how many it can handle without a malfunction, which it is having trouble with. The box of carry rounds I put through it have functioned fine.

If I knew my carry ammo would always work, I guess an occasional malfunction with target ammo wouldn't bother me that much.

I really do want to make this thing work for me.

David
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Old 03-13-2015, 10:37 PM
Iwant2shootlikehickock45 Iwant2shootlikehickock45 is offline
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Hickock45's G42 was flawless, btw
It could not run buffalo ammo and one other type so it wasn't flawless
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Old 03-14-2015, 07:40 AM
Denny347 Denny347 is offline
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Originally Posted by mrsig View Post
I have a pair of Glock 42's and although they both have worked at the range I still have this gut feeling of doubt that if I ever have to depend on it will it take care of me.

I guess all the negative posts on the BG and Glock does not give you a warm feeling of trust. Both manufacturers are top notch and you wonder why have so many iffy .380's out there. Where the engineers and testing people before these guns we're let loose?
I've come to believe that malfunctions are inherent in these "micro" pocket .380s. Physics in not the pocket .380's friend. Regardless of maker, there always seems to be issues and they are VERY sensitive to ammo and shooting form.

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Old 03-14-2015, 08:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Denny347 View Post
I've come to believe that malfunctions are inherent in these "micro" pocket .380s. Physics in not the pocket .380's friend. Regardless of maker, there always seems to be issues and they are VERY sensitive to ammo and shooting form.
Except your theory is completely contradicted by the Ruger LCP, which I think may go down in history as one of the most absolutely reliable pistols ever.

David
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Old 03-14-2015, 01:36 PM
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Except your theory is completely contradicted by the Ruger LCP, which I think may go down in history as one of the most absolutely reliable pistols ever.

David
I've seen posts regarding FTF and FTE, albeit less than others but those small handguns are finicky animals. That is not to say that there are not reliable pieces out there, there are. My P3AT I owned years ago ran like a top but I traded it in for a S&W 642. The Ruger LRP is FAR better than the KT I had. I'm not saying they are worthless or anything like that, if it works for you...carry on...literally.
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Old 03-14-2015, 05:24 PM
fm tim fm tim is offline
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Adverse selection here. People with good experiences do not post about them, those with bad experiences do.
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Old 11-08-2015, 09:36 AM
srmd22 srmd22 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by db4570 View Post
...
I'll be d***ed if I start rebuilding my defective brand new pistol with aftermarket parts at my own expense to try to achieve what the S&W experts can't do.

And, no, I don't think sticky mags are causing it to stovepipe or light strike....
David
OP: I have had all the same problems as you - I never posted about them, and bought the gun based on glowing internet reviews, so the theories about only people with problems posting is bull. Otoh, on recent more specifically worded google searches the light primer strike issue with this gun is all over the web.

I unfortunately went down the path you wisely rejected, and had a reputable armorer do some work, primarily because I wanted to change out the sites and trigger set anyway. I had to bring it back to him after testing, because the problems remained, and he said he has found that often times the firing pin block is not adequately cleared by the striker, and he retouched those parts, and I believe the light striker issue is now solved. This was covered under warranty.

Now the other issues, ftf, stovepipe, slide autoforward had to be fixed separately, at my expense, because they are things S&W will not address under the warranty. They are indeed ammo dependent, which does not excuse the issue. My armorer offers a "performance package" which is $110, and includes throating the barrel and a couple of other adjustments, and results in pretty much 100% reliability with regard to cycling (they tested it with a variety of crappy ammo, including some with known hard primer issues, and claim it is good now -- I have yet to get it to the range to confirm).

There are two excellent and experienced armorers at this shop, and they have a lot of knowledge about the SW BG380. They say it is BS that this performance package is frequently needed on this gun, but that is the state of things in the production gun world these days. While it is not unique to S&W, this model has more problems then many others. Especially, according to them, LPS, and it has to do with the design of the gun, being very light, with a tiny hammer, it just does not have the physics to perform reliably without aftermarket adjustments in many cases. Just replacing the springs does not always work, because the design of the firing pin block and associated parts is faulty.

My experience with this gun was so annoying that I will never buy another S&W. I know these types of problems are not unique to S&W, but I also have and S&W 1911 that has a minor issue (won't cycle properly with 7+1 - only 7 in the mag and 0 in the chamber), and I have so many other guns that perform 100% out of the box.

As far as 380's, my sig p238 is a much better shooter, eats all ammo and is 100% reliable, out of the box. More expensive (but not after all the work I did to the BG) and a bit heavier, but a MUCH better gun in all other ways.

After my own experiences and a bit of google-fu, I conclude the SW BG380 sucks. It does not matter that it works well for most people, because it is completely unreliable for many, many people, even after sending it back to S&W for warranty service. Sure, the issues are fixable, at considerable time and expense to the consumer. S&W is not the great company it once was, and should not be selling this gun in it's current configuration, without addressing these issues in a more competent manner - particularly in a gun that is so specifically meant to be a SD carry gun (not a range or competition piece).
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Old 11-08-2015, 09:52 AM
53cowboy 53cowboy is offline
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Default Picked up new Bodyguard 380 today

So I picked up a MP Bodyguard With that Kryptek pattern...I am hoping SW have worked out..light strikes, broken strike pin and all these other issues I have seen posted...

Mine was manufactured June 2015..will be hitting the range in two days with a mix of different ammo ...stay tuned.

The smaller the guns seem to get the harder it seems to manufacture a constent shooting gun.....
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Old 11-08-2015, 10:57 AM
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A very interesting post, srmd22.

I have updated my experience with these guns here:

Bodyguard 380: Finally Reliable!

Don't let the thread title fool you. I posted an update to my update when it turned out the information I presented in my original post was not correct. If you're patient you can read down and see the whole thread.

As far as a lot of the problems these guns have- FT Feed, FT Eject, FT Lock Back- these have all been repaired correctly on the first trip back to S&W for all three of my BGs. So I would not recommend having a gunsmith tinker with those parts of the gun.

The biggest challenge for S&W is fixing the FTFire. There is a lot more info about this, but no conclusions, in the other post I referenced.

That Sig is a nice piece. I just don't like single action pistols, as a personal preference/familiarity thing. And the Ruger LCP has a reputation for amazing reliability, so I know a tiny 380 can be made to work. I have zero loyalty to S&W or the BG; there is just no other pistol in its configuration. Believe me, I've looked.

David
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Old 11-08-2015, 11:57 AM
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Good to know. I almost bought one of these several times, even though I hate DAO. Now I will wait for the new Remington .380 and see how it does.
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Old 11-09-2015, 12:24 PM
53cowboy 53cowboy is offline
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Well I could not wait till Tuesday, so I went to the range this am...seems I have a good one...no misfires and it ate everything I threw at it
Remington white
Herters
HST
Aguilar
Federal
I must say I think the magazines could be one gauge higher, the trigger is long, long, long..I must admit I shot an sr9c after and that was at the other end of the long trigger spectrum....you pull that and it goes.

My only issue with the bodyguard is the magazine has a hiccup when loading, looks like it is due to an edge on the release catching..in time it should smooth out

Later
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Old 11-09-2015, 07:42 PM
srmd22 srmd22 is offline
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Hi 53cowboy and db4570 - thanks for the updates. I am glad to hear S&W stepped up to the plate so far - I think that is great, but it is still too much work for my lazy a-- er- bones.

I do agree though, the bodyguard 380 is a unique form factor, and I guess that's why I chased the problem down to the bitter end. Presuming it passes my final test - which I really think it will - I will be very happy that I have it.

I do have a Ruger LC9spro, which works great, and is not all that much bigger then the 380's out there, except the BG, which I think is the smallest one. The BG, despite its issues, does have a nice, quality feel to it. I also hated the trigger, but the one I have on there now is great.
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Old 11-09-2015, 07:53 PM
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You ever have somebody else shoot that thing?
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Wisdom comes thru fear . . .
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Old 11-09-2015, 08:37 PM
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I always Loved the BG380, Like theOP said it was the only thing that really fit my bill. I did not like the LCP and would trade my BG380 off on several other guns just trying to find a reliable pocket gun. I kept going back to the Bg380 (in fact I have bought 4 of them just to trade them back off on something I thought would be better).
Like I said the LCP I thought felt cheap and like a toy so it never interested me until Ruger Finally came out with the LCP custom. I traded my BG380 in on that and have never looked back. Great sights, great trigger for a pocket gun (Still Long but easier) and I can and have a 7 round magazine in it. It just works. Maybe something you would be interested in.
Good Luck on the BG380.
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Old 11-09-2015, 09:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fm tim View Post
Adverse selection here. People with good experiences do not post about them, those with bad experiences do.
Exactly. I've yet to have a bad day with my Bodyguard 380 and I've taken it to the range several times. It's never had a hiccup, always goes bang and cycles.



Latest trip, maybe 100 rounds through it. It eats every ammunition I've put through it; FMJ, JHP, and +P.

I have outfitted it with several Galloway Precision parts but only because I wanted a different trigger feel/pull. It's always been reliable and most of the parts were so cheap I decided to get them and keep the factory springs/parts as backups should I ever need them.



Overall I think it's a good gun but I did not love it from the factory due to the long trigger and slim frame. It's a little jumpy, but I'm also a novice shooter. I would not recommend it to an inexperienced shooter or someone unfamiliar with shooting MICRO subcompact pistols.
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Old 10-01-2016, 10:11 PM
Mttodd Mttodd is offline
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Hello all, just joined this forum after a very disappointing trip to the range with my brand new bg380. With three different brands of ammo, Remington, federal, and cheapy mag tech I had 18 failure to fire events. 13 of these were light strikes, the rest were stovepipe jams. Out of 150 rounds. My coworker was with me and brought his brand new lcp. Same ammo combination same brands. No malfunctions. I was disgusted with the performance of this pistol. I really want to use it for cc but I have no confidence whatsoever. Has the light strike issue been resolved by returning to s&w? I don't want to purchase aftermarket parts to fix this brand new pistol.
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Old 12-15-2016, 01:19 PM
Spartan380 Spartan380 is offline
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I've had my "M&P" version since September, with the Crimson Trace green dot added on. It's fired 575 rounds so far, with 2 light strikes from a box of Sellier & Bellot. I've also shot a couple boxes each of MagTech, Gecko, some old Federal stuff and Blazer Brass... plus 100 rds of Critical Defense FTX.

I describe this pistol as my 3/4" wide quick-reload 8-shot revolver... the extra 2 rounds courtesy of MagGuts in the primary and spare mags. AIWB in a Dara Custom holster, and the spare mag is from Stealthgear... both tuckable for special occasions.

My BG380 is one of those with the "curved" left frame rail... and I've looked at 17 others at gun shops around the country, so it seemed normal... and doesn't affect accuracy (8" plates at 20 yards).

The C/T laser, however, is a problem. I'm on my 3rd, now, with the activators on other 2 quitting at 178 and 211 rounds. Both replaced under warranty, no questions asked, but that could change.
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Old 12-15-2016, 08:16 PM
Patton1970 Patton1970 is offline
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I have been fortunate. So far not a single issue with my BG380 regardless of what ammo I feed it. Stock unit, no modifications. I use it for my primary carry. I have owned it since new for about 18 months now.
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Old 12-15-2016, 08:41 PM
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I too also have just purchased a BG380. Took it to the range twice and have had one light strike. I have about 150 rounds thru it mostly with Monarch ammo and it is pretty good. Will see how it goes the more rounds thru it. Sorry everyone is having problems with it. I really like the gun and am considering using it for carry, primary carry is a Sig P938, but maybe in the summer time here in South Louisiana.
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Old 12-15-2016, 09:04 PM
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Love my BG so far, I didn't mind spending a little bit of money on a trigger kit from Galloway and also 10% increase mag spring... I had a few light strikes before making any changes to the pistol, after the changes it works fine... great little gun


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