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Old 04-14-2018, 02:25 PM
Corderbo Corderbo is offline
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Default Difficult to rack slide.

I have a fairly new M&P 9 Shield and have put about 100 rounds through it. I was trying to clean it this morning and it was all I could do to rack the slide back far enough to check and see if there was a round in it. I cleaned the gun and lubed it up with some Ballistol. Again, it was a fight to get it reassembled. BTW, I am not a small guy at 5'10" and 210 pounds with not a lot of fat on me so I am just wondering if anyone else is having this problem and if so, what was the fix. Thanks all..
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Old 04-14-2018, 02:52 PM
NCW Ray NCW Ray is online now
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It has a real thin slide and a very stout Recoil Spring Assembly (RSA) which makes it harder to rack the slide. The thin slide is what caused me problems racking it at first, but now that I've gotten used to it I can rack it easily.

Some will say the spring will break-in/loosen up with use and become easier to rack. I used to think that too, until I put a brand new RSA in mine and I could still rack the slide as easily as I could with the old RSA.

Again, I think it's just a matter of getting used to racking the small gun.

ymmv
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Old 04-14-2018, 02:56 PM
gonerydin gonerydin is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Corderbo View Post
I have a fairly new M&P 9 Shield and have put about 100 rounds through it. I was trying to clean it this morning and it was all I could do to rack the slide back far enough to check and see if there was a round in it. I cleaned the gun and lubed it up with some Ballistol. Again, it was a fight to get it reassembled. BTW, I am not a small guy at 5'10" and 210 pounds with not a lot of fat on me so I am just wondering if anyone else is having this problem and if so, what was the fix. Thanks all..


My 65 years old SO can rack hers although she had some minor difficulty at first. I think the fix is to practice.


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Old 04-14-2018, 03:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Corderbo View Post
... so I am just wondering if anyone else is having this problem and if so, what was the fix. Thanks all..
Yup... A hard to rack slide is something that's been posted about at least Monthly since it came out in 2012, so you're not alone. Thousands have had the same difficulty.

The 'fix'? Some have sworn by the Stainless Steel guide rod (do a forum search about it), while others (like me) feel it's a waste of money, when (as others mentioned) practice will make it easier.

Some say that as with other pistols that have strong RSAs (Recoil Spring Assembly), letting it sit overnight with the slide retracted may help the RSA 'settle in'.

Of course, shooting a few hundred rounds at each range outing (exercising the RSA) will accomplish the same thing.
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Old 04-14-2018, 04:20 PM
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I have seven semi-autos, and my Shield 9 is by far the hardest to rack, especially when re-assembling it. The recoil spring assembly in my Shield 9 has 3,000 rounds on it, and it has not loosened up very much at all. I hold my Shield close to my body, get a firm grasp on the slide, and rack it by pushing the grip as violently as I can while retaining control. But that can be painful and exasperating. Therefore, I have found two effective solutions to this problem:

1. The Handi-Racker. It's great invention for Shield 9 owners because it allows you to rack your Shield instantly and easily. It's a block of plastic with a cut-out for your slide. Insert the slide, and push the block against any hard surface, engage the slide lock, and presto, your slide is racked.

2. The Shield 45. Not only is it much easier to rack than the Shield 9, it is more accurate. It has replaced my Shield 9 as my back-up every day carry.
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Old 04-14-2018, 05:31 PM
John Robert John Robert is offline
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My shield loosened up around 2500/3000 rounds and has gotten better with more use (now up to 9000 +/-). Use the heck out of it. It's like the energizer bunny.
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Old 04-14-2018, 06:49 PM
CBStuard CBStuard is offline
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Try a different technique. Instead of pushing the gun away w/ one hand and and pulling the slide toward you w/ the other hand..hold the gun as close to your chest as possible, (right hand shooter) push the gun to the left w/ your right hand, while pushing the slide to the right w/ your left hand. Be aware where the muzzle is pointing. Often it's a good idea, at a typical range for instance, (again right hand shooter) to rotate your body 90 degrees to the right so the gun is pointing toward the target and not at the person in the lane to your left.
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Old 04-14-2018, 06:55 PM
NewToGuns17 NewToGuns17 is offline
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The way I lock mine back is this. Grab the gun as if you're going to shoot it with your right hand. With your left, grab the rear serrations. With your right hand thumb, apply pressure to the slide stop. Push to the left with your right hand while pushing the slide with your left hand to the right. When the slide is back enough the pressure from your thumb will lock the slide open.

Hold gun parallel to your chest so it's like you're trying to shoot at a left target from your chest.
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Old 04-14-2018, 07:59 PM
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They are more difficult to rack than most other brands, but should be pretty easy for a big guy with some strength. Could be the technique you're using. Take a look at this guy's video.


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Old 04-15-2018, 03:10 PM
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I'm 5'10" 190lbs and I have a lot of fat. So, if I can do it, you can do it. Here's a shorter video on racking the Shield:

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Old 04-15-2018, 07:02 PM
jnichols2 jnichols2 is offline
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I can rack mine, but I'm 70 with arthritis. I know a day will come...

I will order a Handi-Rack, which should ensure the future.
In a SHTF situation, I'm sure I'll rack it if I need to.
Of course, after 9 rounds expended, I could be in trouble.


My Shield 9 is M01, and I have resisted upgrading to M02.
If Smith borrows from the 380 Shield EZ for M03, I'll definitely buy it.
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Old 04-16-2018, 10:43 AM
Shov76 Shov76 is offline
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To keep it open use an empty mag and then rack it. It will automatically lock open. The push rather than the pull described above certainly helps. It will loosen up over time
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:18 PM
bearfoot bearfoot is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CBStuard View Post
Try a different technique. Instead of pushing the gun away w/ one hand and and pulling the slide toward you w/ the other hand..hold the gun as close to your chest as possible, (right hand shooter) push the gun to the left w/ your right hand, while pushing the slide to the right w/ your left hand. Be aware where the muzzle is pointing. Often it's a good idea, at a typical range for instance, (again right hand shooter) to rotate your body 90 degrees to the right so the gun is pointing toward the target and not at the person in the lane to your left.
^^^^^suggestion, practice this procedure. you can also lock the slide back w/ this procedure.
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Old 04-16-2018, 12:19 PM
bearfoot bearfoot is offline
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another suggestion. PT.com. on this http:, videos, skill set.
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Old 04-16-2018, 04:39 PM
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Nearly impossible at first, lock it back with an empty mag. Leave it sit that way for a few days. It will help.
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Old 04-17-2018, 07:45 AM
CBStuard CBStuard is offline
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I know that if I couldn't rack the slide easily it would worry me some but, how often do you need to do it? When I go to the range the answer is once, right at the start. From then on, it locks back on an empty mag, I load a full mag, and slingshot the slide closed. I could also use the slide release lever.
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:56 AM
ElJay84 ElJay84 is offline
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Default tacrack

There is a device that can be added to the shield to assist racking for those with weak hands or due to age and arthritis. It's called TacRack. Was originally only available for Glocks but there is one now available for Shields. I'm 73 with arthritis in both hands. I have a new Shield 2.0 which thus far I can manage to rack but there are days when gripping anything is impossible. I will probably get one of these devices. Video on you tube shows installation. Does not look to be difficult.
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Old 04-17-2018, 01:13 PM
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Mine is stiff as well...but my challenge is the slide release on both the 9 and .45.

With the slide all the way back it takes a lot of effort, and two hands to trip it on the 9, which has been shot with maybe 500 rounds; on the new .45 (less than 100 rounds) it's impossible. To release the slide I have to drop the mag and rack it.

Now on both guns if there are rounds in the mag, it's not a problem, I always rack by hand and hardly ever, on any of my guns, use the slide release. But still...shouldn't it be easier?
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Old 04-17-2018, 01:28 PM
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Get your wife to rack the slide for you.
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Old 04-17-2018, 04:52 PM
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the hardest one I've found is the kahr PM9. The shield comes in 2nd place. You need strong fingers!
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Old 04-17-2018, 05:21 PM
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Default Hard To Rack/ Requires One More Jerk

Quote:
Originally Posted by Corderbo View Post
I have a fairly new M&P 9 Shield and have put about 100 rounds through it. I was trying to clean it this morning and it was all I could do to rack the slide back far enough to check and see if there was a round in it. I cleaned the gun and lubed it up with some Ballistol. Again, it was a fight to get it reassembled. BTW, I am not a small guy at 5'10" and 210 pounds with not a lot of fat on me so I am just wondering if anyone else is having this problem and if so, what was the fix. Thanks all..
They are all hard to rack and no loading them and letting rest a few days won't help.
Try this. Rack it sharply and then at the last mini-fraction of a moment__give it one hard jerk back. I've found this helps.
Now, I instruct the ladies (until the 380 EZ came out) when racking the slide, Instead of only pushing back with the left hand___ push forward with the right hand. You can push a lot harder than you can pull.
Also, a Handi-Racker (when at the work bench) help a lot.
Safest way to rack your pistols Handi-Racker
It's a piece of (Hard Plastic) 2"X3.5" (1/2" thick)
G'luck and stay safe.
Poli Viejo
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Old 04-19-2018, 01:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RobzGuns View Post
Yup... A hard to rack slide is something that's been posted about at least Monthly since it came out in 2012, so you're not alone. Thousands have had the same difficulty.

The 'fix'? Some have sworn by the Stainless Steel guide rod (do a forum search about it), while others (like me) feel it's a waste of money, when (as others mentioned) practice will make it easier.

Some say that as with other pistols that have strong RSAs (Recoil Spring Assembly), letting it sit overnight with the slide retracted may help the RSA 'settle in'.

Of course, shooting a few hundred rounds at each range outing (exercising the RSA) will accomplish the same thing.
About three years ago I bought one of those stainless steel slides.
It did rack easier. Then, whether the notice was placed on the web site after I bought it or I missed it when ordering__ there was a caution not to be used if using +P ammo.
I don't have it anymore so must have tossed it. That notice caused concern for me.
Stay safe.
Poli Viejo
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Old 04-19-2018, 02:03 AM
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Default Not Intended To Be A Release

Quote:
Originally Posted by Redcoat3340 View Post
Mine is stiff as well...but my challenge is the slide release on both the 9 and .45.

With the slide all the way back it takes a lot of effort, and two hands to trip it on the 9, which has been shot with maybe 500 rounds; on the new .45 (less than 100 rounds) it's impossible. To release the slide I have to drop the mag and rack it.

Now on both guns if there are rounds in the mag, it's not a problem, I always rack by hand and hardly ever, on any of my guns, use the slide release. But still...shouldn't it be easier?
It's my understanding it's not intended to be a slide release. I know Hollywood shows this all the time. I know a few guys that
will use them for a slide release.
Some release reasonably easy but the Shield isn't one of these.
I've never tried it on my Sigs or my one Lock__G43 so I don't
know about these.
I don't mind any one who releases their slide in this manner but
it's a slide lock.
Stay safe
Poli Viejo
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Old 04-19-2018, 10:52 PM
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Count me as among those who believe the Shield does NOT loosen up or "take a set" if you keep the slide locked back for a time. This is a small, lightweight but reasonably powerful little gun. This requires springs that will allow it to function reliably in less than well trained hands.

While the 9mm is not a round that produces uncontrollable bucking in a full sized gun, a small, plastic shorty will jump and cause the same effect as "limp wristing". The fast, powerful springs are engineered to be quick enough to eject and re-charge the weapon while operating in timed action.

IMO, if you try going with a lighter spring so you can more easily rack the slide, you risk slowing the slide in relation to the equally tough magazine spring. It's possible this could produce timing /feeding issues.

I have nearly 4000 rnds through my Shield-9 Ver.1 and it's as tough as ever. I've simply learned to leverage it more naturally and have gotten used to it. I love it.

My newer 2.0 Compact is somewhat easier to manipulate, possibly because it is a heavier gun and may have commensurately lighter springs. I love it, too.
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Old 04-19-2018, 11:59 PM
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Grip tape on both sides of the slide will make a big difference.
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Old 04-20-2018, 10:42 PM
tnfan tnfan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raisin View Post
Grip tape on both sides of the slide will make a big difference.
Totally agree. Im 71 and had much difficulty racking the slide. So much so that I finally stopped carrying my Shield. Finally decided to apply grip tape. Now no issues with the slide and the Shield is now my EDC.
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