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  #1  
Old 11-07-2010, 05:25 AM
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Default Ultimate Bodyguard 380 Laser Button Fix.

This may belong in the smithing the smith subject, however I don't really consider this smithing... I posted this fix previously elsewhere that they were having problems with the buttons. I don't know if anyone else has come up with this solution already here, or posted it at any rate. I didn't see a similar fix. Read below to find out how I finally fixed the buttons...

Okay, so like everyone else, I too found the laser buttons impossibly hard to activate... I looked at all sorts of fixes elsewhere on the net and here, and none of them seem to really accomplish the goals of easing the activation, and making it a little harder to accidentally remove the buttons at the same time. I used a small tube from the middle section of a cheap q-tip, cut a small section out, and placed it around the nipple of my button. Let me explain in detail.

First, remove the buttons. Easy to do by just pinching and puling them. They come out way too easy in my opinion.

Next, find a q-tip that has the plastic tubular center section. Another type of small tube may work, I just happen to discover that these are the exact size.

Third, clip a small section of this tube. This is the trial and error portion. Too long and the button won't go back in, or the laser will be too easy to activate, etc. Too short, and you will not accomplish anything. I discovered, at least on my gun, that the same length as the nipple seemed to work really well. In the next step, you will use a lighter to round or soften the ends of the tube so allow for that when you cut the length of tube.

Next, hold the tiny piece of tube with tweezers or something so you don't burn yourself. Take a lighter, and just barely touch the end of the tube with the flame. About 1/10th of a second is all it will take. The tube will curl slightly back on itself. This is what we want. This will help the tube seat in the rubber button, and will soften it for the foil switch on the laser unit. Do this to both ends of the tube.

Now, take the small tube and place it around the center nipple of the switch in the void area. If it is in right, it should just barely protrude from the void, and stick out about the same amount as the central nipple.

Next, reinstall the buttons. It will now take a little more effort to get them in the gun. I suggest using a small very dull implement to help you seat the o-ring portion. You can, however, put them back in with just your fingers and a little twist, it just takes a little more effort. If you want to make sure it is completely seating, remove the laser from the frame. Instructions for this are in the owner's manual.

You should find that the effort required to activate the laser is now significantly reduced. I played with mine for about an hour before I found the right length to give me the best of both worlds, you should expect to do the same if you want it to be perfect. I now have laser buttons that do not activate in my pocket or holster, however I can easily activate the laser with either my trigger finger or support thumb mid draw, and it is light and intuitive. I discovered that the laser buttons are seated more firmly as well as the void is filled around the nipple. Bonus discovery!

I take no responsibility for damage you may do to your gun or buttons if you do this yourself. Good luck, happy shooting.

Feel free to pass this one on, just give me credit please as I am also approaching S&W about a similar fix, however permanently installed in the button. I haven't seen any other variations of this, or found anything that I think works better. If you have something though, let me know. Always looking for that better mousetrap.

I will post pictures with this when I get back to my home computer.
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Old 11-07-2010, 12:45 PM
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Had they made the button out of a less pliable material the nipple would not have compressed as much during activation.

Your idea looks very good although I might add to be very careful with the extension added to the button as if to long permanent damage could be done to the bronze switch.

Frank
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Old 11-07-2010, 09:17 PM
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Yeah, so far no signs of damage on my foil switches... I suggested the same thing to our LEO rep from Smith and Wesson, and he said he forwarded the advice about the buttons up the line... We'll see.

The real key here is getting the tubes the exact right length. It is a time consuming fix, but worth it IMHO...

Here are the pics.
First is the q-tip, second the cut and rounded section, third the switch with the tube installed.
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Old 11-08-2010, 01:15 PM
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Very nice pictures. Although I am not having a real problem with the switch I am going to try your suggestion.

Thanks

Frank
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Old 11-10-2010, 11:00 PM
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BG380LEO,
Brilliant idea on fixing an inactive button on the laser site. I had two inactive buttons when using my thumb but both worked if I pushed with my finger nail. Not pleasant. Based on your proceedure, I did both buttons and now they work with ease. Thanks for the insight. I made a few discoveries that may help others that follow your proceedure.
1. Didn't have a hollow tube from a Q-tip. Found that an ink tube from a ball point pen was perfect.
2. Cut the tip off a wooden toothpick and inserted it in the heated/rolled end to hold it while heating the other end. The toothpick also helped keep the hole from melting shut.
3. For the life of me I couldn't insert the button back into the hole to reset the "flange". I took the laser site off "see manual". It made it much easier to push the button back in place.
4. While the laser was removed, I found I could push the tube onto the nipple of the second button without removing it. Used a tweezer to place the tube over the nipple, removed tweezer and insert it through the laser lens hole and pushed the tube in place while holding the button with my other thumb to prevent it from falling out. With a little patience it worked well and the button remained in place.

Both buttons activate the laser with ease. The locking pin and the laser button fixes now makes my BG380 the perfect CC. Hope Smith picks up on your idea. Between all of us, we'll help Smith make a much better 380.

By the by: they finally replaced my EAA6xxx, with the take down pin problem, with a new framed EAB5xxx. Shoots like a charm and the lock down pin stays in place.

Last edited by Sawdust25; 11-10-2010 at 11:03 PM.
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Old 11-12-2010, 09:15 AM
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Hi...here is an easier fix...take the button off...rub them between your fingers and reinsert them...the material needs to soften..after I did this the laser activates fine...no need for Q-tips...Im not sure how that would affect the warranty?

Good Luck!
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Old 11-15-2010, 09:09 AM
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Not to discount that rubbing them between your fingers worked for you, but for me, it took this fix. The issue isn't that the buttons need to be softer, rather the opposite. Maybe you got a newer gun, one with firmer buttons?

I have about 1000 rounds through mine now, trouble free other than the buttons, which I now fixed...

If rubbing them between your fingers works for you, awesome. I know several people here, and on other forums, suggested manipulating the little nipple with tweezers to ensure it is centered, or other temporary fixes. For me, (I carry every day, everywhere, no exception), these were exactly that, temporary fixes... As soon as the button was jarred or manipulated any real amount, back to square one.

I can't remember if I stated this earlier, but easiest removal and installation of the buttons, (at least to ensure they seat), is with the laser module removed. I actually removed my module, inserted the buttons, installed the tube, and then reinstalled the module. Seemed to work best. May take several attempts, be patient.

And hey, 1000 ways to skin a cat, do what works for you...
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Old 11-19-2010, 12:36 AM
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Hi everyone, I'd like to add one more fix that worked for me. I had to use extreme force to activate the laser buttons so this is my solution.
I got a small leather punch which cuts small round holes in leather and used it on a paper-plastic business card which is about half the thickness of a regular credit card and punched two small holes to use as round shims. Don't use just paper as it will break down after time. I then scotch taped one each over the pressure sensitive buttons on the laser, centering them in the exact middle. The cutouts were just a little smaller than the switch button. This worked perfect with just the right pressure to activate the laser but not too easy to turn it on in my cc holster.
After a thousand rounds it still works flawlessly.
I hope this also helps other people with the same problem.
It seems that the customers will be the one's that will solve the problems.
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Old 12-05-2010, 01:53 AM
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Thumbs up

I purchased a brand new BG380 when it was first released and i will say i was very disappointed with the functionality of the laser on my particular gun i also carry all day everyday with no exceptions as im in the real estate business and deal with a lot of short sales and foreclosures in ruff areas and for some odd reason the laser on my BG was just extremely hard to cycle on and off... atleast my buttons were, however after coming across this fix i spent a few minutes trying it out and after following the simple steps my laser now works great!!
I followed the instructions however i chose to use the ball point pen tube as mentioned on the thread by another member and i will say it worked like a charm! Now i effortlessly tap the laser button on either side and its instantly on and or off! im truly amazed on how easy it cycles now! This is def a great fix...A+ hopefully S&W will pick up on this and create a smiliar factory fix! Thanks for sharing!
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Old 12-13-2010, 11:05 PM
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Thumbs up Engineering Mod Of the Year Award...

I spent some quality time with my newly acquired BG380 tonight watching the tube and applying your mod, with the alteration of using a ball point pen tube. This in my mind, warrants consideration for the Engineering Mod of the Year Award, and it amazes me the SW didn't think of it first. My left button was basically inop, as many have reported, but the right button worked. Now both buttons work as they should have when leaving the factory.

I've never considered owning an SW before until the BG380, and the reported problems with this firearm, the rest of which I hope to avoid, led me to be patient and wait for later serial numbers. However, I was ultimately not immune. I would certainly hope SW studies the design and manufacturing processes responsible for the problems with this weapon thoroughly, and learns from this reputation-tarnishing experience.

Kudos to your study and easy solution this one, obviously burdoning problem of the BG380.

B.

Last edited by Brahma; 12-13-2010 at 11:07 PM.
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Old 12-14-2010, 12:14 PM
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Great tip guys. My laser buttons work fine but if they act up I sure know what my next step will be.

Thanks for sharing BG380LEO and others!
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Old 12-20-2010, 03:39 PM
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Default Another laser button fix

I also had too much trouble pushing the buttons. However, since I carry it in a fairly solid holster, the last thing I want is for it to activate in the holster and wear out the batteries. My fix, I'm afraid is a little less of an engineering feat. However, it made the push considerably easier, but not too light.

I took the laser out and noticed that both the little nipples were somewhat pointing downward. This probably happened during initial assembly. I also noticed that the foil switches have more play on the top than at the bottom. I simply rotated the rubber plugs 180 degrees in their sockets, reassembled the laser and gun, and now both the switches have the perfect one-hand push to activate.

Before you start melting things, you might just give it a try. What do you have to lose?
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Old 12-20-2010, 11:53 PM
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I bought a 380 bodyguard two days ago, 12-18-10. From the get go I notice it was hard to press the buttons to turn on the laser. After a web search to find out if this was common I found your post on how to fix the hard button problem using a q-tip. I followed your directions and the fix worked perfectly. Even though the gun is new I could tell it was going to be a needed fix so why wait. After I've had the gun awhile I'll post again to let everyone know how I like it and how the fix is working.
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Old 12-24-2010, 02:34 AM
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mine went back to smith...
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Old 12-31-2010, 01:11 PM
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Just got my BG and have the same laser button issue. Will S &W do the fix? Bothersome; just had to return my Neos to Beretta for safety lock issues. How can they sell this stuff without recall mods done?
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Old 01-01-2011, 12:55 AM
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http://*****************/
first of all try this link.. this might help you out... I have a feeling that if i saw this i would have never bought it. there is some useful info in here.

Smith just got mine, after takeing a lot longer than 2 days to get there. I think it being holidays and with the snow we had here on the East coast. I 'll cut them some slack.

I am sorry that you are having problems like alot of people on here have had.
I believe if you pack,send it back to smith they will fix it or if you want to fix a brand new gun I believe they might send you the buttons and you can fool with it.
Good luck
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Old 01-15-2011, 10:25 AM
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Question S & W repair of laser switch for BG380?

I have sent my BG380 back to S&W for repair of hard to activate laser switch twice. Each time they sent me a new clip which was nice but did not fix the switch. So I called customer service again only to be told that the switch is supposed to be hard to turn on and that it should be activated with the thumb nail! Never mind that that makes the laser totally impractical for self defense!
I have read the various fixes on the forum but think that S&W should be making these switches work properly. Has anyone had any success with S&W fixing the switch? Has a modification been made to newer models? I haven't sent the pistol back for a third time after the S&W rep told me they were supposed to be difficult to turn on.

Last edited by jimrad; 01-15-2011 at 10:27 AM. Reason: spelling correction
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Old 01-15-2011, 11:08 AM
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Talking

Besides the q-tip fix which I didn't want to do unless it was the last thing available, someone else suggested; the technique of removing the rubber button and rolling it around between your finger and thumb. I worked for me; actually it was perfect and lasted too. That little nub needs to get straightened up and then placed back in the hole. OH yea, unless your floors need a good t-shirt dusting, work on it somewhere open or protected because the little rubber buttons grow wings at the most inopportune times. It took me 20 minutes in my office lying on the floor with a flash light to find it in an area way out of the realm of possible bounces. I had to revert back to crime scene search technique and do the whole room, quadrant by quadrant. I am self submitting for the "dumb sh*t" award of the week.
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Old 01-15-2011, 02:50 PM
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Cop,
I applaud you taking on this exercise your self. I love to tinker as a lot of guys do. I was not going to take on this adventure on a gun where the receipt ink was not dry yet.There are waaay to many choices out there for people who want it done right the first time.
I am glad that it did work out for you.

Jim,
I dont know what to tell you.I sent mine back for most of the reasons that most of us on here and on the BG380 dot com site too.I hate to see people that dont get any satisfaction.I see your Magazine collection is growing,but i am sure that you would trade them in for a working Pistol.

The Rep is full of Horse Puckey(thanks Col Potter) I sent my EAB58XX back for EXACTLY the same thing you did. I sent it out just before Christmas(bad timing on my part) and got it back this week.I tested BOTH buttons and they are a lot better than they were when i sent it out- in short they fixed that and did a fantastic job! that much they got right.

I also had an issue with the Safety. they fixed that too... the other issues will have to wait till i get to the range. I was so upset that i had to send it out that i bought the SIG p238. If when i get to the range and it is not working I wont send it out again. I'll sell it ON THE SPOT and buy another Sig.

I applaud those who will continue to support their country and buy only American. I try to when ever i can.

Third time is always a charm. Best of luck to you.
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Old 01-15-2011, 07:13 PM
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I have 3 BG380,s a EAA and 2 EAF. All three work flawlessly except for the Laser button. Here,s my repair and only in my case. I put a tiny drop of heat gun glue, the size of a pin head on the center of the button. That added stiffness to the center portion of the button. Be sure to have extra buttons as at the first try as I melted the first few buttons. Now if S&W design people had just made the button out of stiffer material no one would have had any trouble with the buttons.

By the way I just called S&W and told them what I was doing and they sent me 6 buttons to work with.
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Old 01-15-2011, 07:58 PM
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Frank,
Wow you must really like Smith- or this gun. I commend you on yopur ability to Diagnose and repair your own Firearm.I think that if i were S/W i would do the same thing... this way they dont have to pay THEIR people to deal with it.

The Rep told me on the phone that they are getting a lot of these back(actually another rep said that they are NOT getting many of these back) and it's getting to the point where they have a lot of work to do.

I will admit that they did repair the buttons right. I have been hearing som horror stories..

Good luck
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Old 01-15-2011, 08:50 PM
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Yes, I do like this gun. The BG380 is a real innovation and in my case at least its been fool proof. In a way I wish I had one with one of the reported problems so I could see the trouble. I have seen perhaps 6 others than mine and they were flawless also. I use the laser for training only therefore the button question was a mute point.
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Old 01-16-2011, 06:21 PM
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Default easy on/off now

Thanks for the advice.. I used the q-tip version, works great..
the only question now, is anyone having an issue with them coming on too easy? Each time I put it in the holster it comes on.. The good thing is I can turn it off after holstered, and when I draw, the laser automatically comes on while coming out of the holster. I’m just wondering if I need to be shorter on the inserts.. I left them just a hair shorter than the nipple..

Thanks
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Old 02-19-2011, 02:23 PM
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Lightbulb Awesome Fix Refinement! So far...

@BG380LEO Thanks for the totally great discovery, & information on how to create a solution. I totally agree w/ you regarding the temporal nature of the button manipulation & new buttons solutions.

For those who are stating that you can solve this issue by simply physically manipulating the buttons w/ the finger roll technique, having S&W send you new buttons or sending their pistols in to S&W for fixing please take note. These methods do NOT work consistently, or permanently. This is a design issue, which requires a design solution to permanently fix. I will elaborate on the design related aspects of this issue later.

Not trying to flame, but it is important for folks not to waste time w/ solutions that do not provide correct fixes.

@Sawdust25 Thanks for the idea of using a pen ink tube for the part to use in the button as a solution. It actually lends itself to a better solution, (as tested) for this problem. The reasons for this are the tubes are thicker wrapping around the nipple tighter & creating more consistent rigidity of the nipple for consistent centering of the nipple.

I have refined the solution a bit more, and will be able to give dimensions that people can use for cutting the ink tube to the proper length for a consistent & reliable solution until S&W resolves it from the mfr end.

Ok, as promised, now for the design issue elaboration. From everyone's input, as well as my tests & discoveries, I have observed that the problem is rooted in two main facets w/ one affecting the other to create the issue:

1) The rigidity of the material for buttons is too low to keep the nipple from veering off-center of the foil switch's domed depressing area.

2) The nipple needs to remain centered while depressing the button so that enough force is transferred to make the foil switch close the circuit.

The result of these two facets occurs after some wear-in of the button material. It can get worse with more activation attempts after the nipple has veered off-center. Once it is off-center, it requires more direct pressing force due to the mechanical disadvantage created by the off-center nipple. This is why when you look at the buttons after the issue is occurring, you will see the nipples remaining off-center even after removing the laser unit to view them. This is also why you can temporarily resolve the issue by manipulating the buttons, or replacing them w/ new ones. For those who rarely activate the laser, they can feasibly go through long periods of time w/o having the issue. In addition, due to mfr variances in the rigidity of the button material there may even be folks who NEVER experience the issue to begin with. =O Go figure. lol

There is a good reason the foil switch/button combination has been set to work only under specific conditions (when the nipple is centered on the foil switch while depressing the soft button with enough force to make the contact occur in the foil switch). The main reason, as already mentioned, and observed by folks in this thread, is that there is a Goldilocks requirement that has to be in place for the activation to be effective against accidental/incidental engagement. Especially from flat rubbing surfaces (scenario when taking gun in/out of rigid holsters). We don't want the laser to be too easily activated, nor do we want them to be too difficult to activate. S&W had problems w/ the lasers being to easily activated before, so then they resolved that issue, but created another one by not fully observing effect of design changes.

That's enough of the elaboration of the problem, history & solution requirements. Now to my refined solution as well as some suggestions for S&W to resolve this issue while maintaining the difficulty of accidental/incidental activation:

So, once my focus shifted to "How can we help keep the nipple centered throughout the depression/release process?", it dawned on me that the tube should be cut down to aid in keeping the nipple centered rather than adding more force transfer from the button being pushed (The increased force transfer is what causes the activation to be too sensitive for folks. I had it so sensitive at one point that the button would not release! =O). So, I thought that the key to this would be to cut the tube piece short enough so when button is depressed the tube does NOT protrude out of the button cavity. This would help keep the nipple centered while depressing & releasing the button during activation/cycling of the laser without increasing the force transfer from the finger pushing the button in.

Success! Now the laser is consistently activated w/ a reasonable amount of finger pressure, like when the button is new, no matter how many times I activate/cycle the laser from either side. After testing, the buttons still resist being activated from flat surface rubbing. Now the only thing to do is to go to the range to ensure that after firing, the solution still provides consistent activation/cycling of the laser.

If all is good after the range today, I will post the dimensions one needs to cut to be sure they are getting the same results as I am!

For Smith & Wesson, if you are reading this, please consider one of the following solutions from the mfr side so that folks are no longer left needing to physically create their own hardware solutions to a known mfr design issue:

1) Foil Switch Dimple - Create a dimple that is just larger in diameter than the diameter of the button nipple in the domed part of the foil switch. This will aid in keeping the nipple centered during activation & release.

2) Modify Button Nipple - Create a new mold for the buttons so that the nipple has a concave end with a diameter that is larger than the current nipple diameter.

3) Nipple Diameter Increase - Increase diameter of nipple to reduce veering off-center during button depression.

4) Nipple Reinforcement Tube Insert - Mfr tubes according to dimensions that I will be listing or close to them, and insert them into all new pistols, as well as mail out for people to insert themselves for owned ones. (For this option I think it would be appropriate offer some form of compensation to BG380LEO, Sawdust25 and myself for our contributions to this resolution.)

Alright, so there it is. Sorry for my first post to this forum being so long. Stay tuned to see results from range, I promise the update post will be shorter! lol Maybe I should do video of tube creation too....what say you folk??

Last edited by Physboy; 02-21-2011 at 08:30 AM.
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Old 02-19-2011, 03:04 PM
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If its coming on too easily, pull out the q tip and trim it or just start over and go shorter. I tried this right after I got the mailing return from SW. Thought it was stupid to send it in for something that is that easily fixed. Worried about the warranty? Come on, if you ever send it in, pull out the buttons and remove the q tip, problem solved. I tried rolling it like a booger, re centering the pin, rotating it. None of those provided the 100% fix. They helped sometimes but that isn't good enough for me. Now I can actually FEEL the clicks on the one side and the other side I can't feel it but it works all the time as an actual switch should. Not like a prayer that the switch might work if I actually needed/wanted it. Nice job on this mod.
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Old 02-20-2011, 09:11 AM
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I am a new member here and have just bought the S&W Bodyguard 380the other day. I too have experienced the problem with the laser button on the right side. I spent 10 minutes last night using the Q-tip fix and I have to say that it was very effective. I can now just press the button and it is on immediately. I have also carried it around for a few hours in a middle of the back Uncle Mikes holster and did not have any issues of the laser turning on.
Thanks for all the posts on this forum. It helped me make an informed decision to purchase this particular model. I look forward to reading on an ongoing basis and learning more and more as time goes on.

Thanks to all
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Old 02-21-2011, 02:25 AM
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Thumbs up Fix Update

Ok, as promissed, I have fired 50+ rounds w/o a single observable change in the button fix.

I have also made the dimensional measurements for the button inserts:

ID ~ 1.5 mm
OD ~ 3.0 mm
Height ~ 2.5 mm original cut from pen ink tube melted down from both cut ends to ~ 2.0 mm

These dimensions are currently providing extremely reliable index finger & thumb activation, while maintaining consistent resistance to activation via flat surface rubbing.

Hope this helps! (Told ya it would be short this time!)
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:27 AM
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I have no mechanical skills and won't be trying any sort of fixof the laser in fear of ruining things to a point that the warranty won't be honored due to my unauthorized abuse of the weapon...lol
Guess my question is, Will S&W ever come out with a true fix. I only bought this weapon Yesterday morning but the laser is so hard to use it might as well not be there. When I asked about upgrading the sights on the weapon in case the battery died ( the current sights are almost invisible), some old school hard azz behind the counter went off about how at close range " sights don't do you no good anyhow". Not saying he's wrong but having something other than the laser for aiming would be nice.
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:05 AM
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Originally Posted by ROBODOM View Post
I have no mechanical skills and won't be trying any sort of fixof the laser in fear of ruining things to a point that the warranty won't be honored due to my unauthorized abuse of the weapon...lol
Guess my question is, Will S&W ever come out with a true fix. I only bought this weapon Yesterday morning but the laser is so hard to use it might as well not be there. When I asked about upgrading the sights on the weapon in case the battery died ( the current sights are almost invisible), some old school hard azz behind the counter went off about how at close range " sights don't do you no good anyhow". Not saying he's wrong but having something other than the laser for aiming would be nice.
@ROBODOM, If you don't feel like you have the mechanical skills to pull it off then I would agree w/ you not trying the mod yourself. lol Too bad though, because it works really well. FYI if S&W sanctions the mods by even giving folks extra buttons to work w/, then I don't see how we are voiding any warranties. I will call them to find out today if the tube button inserts would void the warranty. Regardless, you should also know that exactly what is required to place the inserts in the buttons, is also required in order to change out the buttons, & batteries for the laser. S&W sent me new buttons to change out on my own, so I know that this process does NOT void the warranty.

As far as the night sights go, I totally agree w/ you. I am definitely from the fault tolerant camp, & if there is a likely scenario where something can go wrong it only makes sense to prepare for that. Isn't that why we got the guns to begin w/??? lol Personally, I have backup night sights for all of my weapons that I bother putting optics & lasers on.

Moving on there are a couple of options I would recommend:

1) You can get tritium night sights from HERE on page 2 of the catalog, in the upper right hand corner. I am going w/ that solution as priced out it will be ~$130 + s&h of slide to them for the installation (included in price). I figure this would be route you would want, given what you have stated about mechanical skill level.

2) If you feel daring, and don't mind ensuring that you expose your sights to some UV light every night, then a cheaper solution is the glow in dark stickers from Nightsiters HERE. I would go w/ the second set from the left, "Nitesiters Large Dot & Strip Set" + at least the "9 LED UV light" unless you find one cheaper elsewhere, the total will be about $32 delivered.

Hope that helps!

Last edited by Physboy; 02-21-2011 at 09:14 AM.
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:25 AM
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Thanks for the great information about sights. Couldn't find the one for the BG 380 but with their phone number on the bottom of the page I hope to get some answers. Regarding your statement
"I am going w/ that solution as priced out it will be ~$130 + s&h of slide to them for the installation (included in price)", what does "of slide them mean"? not trying to be a smart azz in case it's just a typo but I just didn't get it. thanks again for any help.
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:37 AM
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Thanks for the great information about sights. Couldn't find the one for the BG 380 but with their phone number on the bottom of the page I hope to get some answers. Regarding your statement
"I am going w/ that solution as priced out it will be ~$130 + s&h of slide to them for the installation (included in price)", what does "of slide them mean"? not trying to be a smart azz in case it's just a typo but I just didn't get it. thanks again for any help.
No problem. The info for BG380 sights is on 2nd page of the 2011 catalog only (From link in my original post it is labeled "Page 1" on the print, but in the PDF reader's counter it is page 2 top right-hand corner.)

I actually wrote "...~$130 + s&h of slide to them..." Basically, I am talking about sending the slide to XS Sights so they can install them. They do not require sending in the entire for installation.

Good luck, & let me know how you like 'em!
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:44 AM
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Ok, now I get it...LOL

I'm wondering if I can just have those sights sent to me then have them installed at a by a local gunsmith. It's the only weapon in the house right now and not wanting it sent away if it can be done quicker at hoem, so to speak. Also,if you could, when you gets yours back let me know what holster works well with the new sights.

Last edited by ROBODOM; 02-21-2011 at 09:46 AM.
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Old 02-21-2011, 11:52 AM
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@ROBODOM,

Again, no problem. I will definitely put up a post regarding the holster changes if any that are required to accommodate the new sights.

BTW, yes, you can just buy them, and have them shipped to you directly, I believe it is ~ $90 + s&h.

I am not sure if this is a big deal to you, but you will lose 3/8" on the sight radius as the rear sight they use is not designed like the swept back Novak type the gun comes w/. The XS rear sight just goes straight from the dovetail area. For me it does not matter because the ease of sight acquisition w/ the big dot trumps the minor loss in sight radius, and lets face it, no one is doing any sniping w/ this gun.

Last edited by Physboy; 02-21-2011 at 03:57 PM.
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:41 PM
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FYI, I did speak w/ support @ S&W today & they did state that if you apply this mod so that the tube insert does NOT contact the foil switch, it will NOT void the warranty.

I was dismayed that they were not interested in taking down the dimensions for them, or Insight to hand out the tubes for fixing the issue but at least it can be fixed. He said that this is an Insight issue so S&W stays hands off w/ it. That is kind of a crappy position to take as we purchased it from them, they need to stand behind the product, not play virtual hot potato w/ us. Erggggg!
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Old 02-24-2011, 12:24 AM
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So, should I never expect S&W to offer a repair/recall for this laser problem and can only get a fix if I do it myself or find someone local who will?
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Old 02-24-2011, 12:55 AM
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IMO,,,sending your gun in for new button's is not the fix. Let me explain.

When I bought mine, I had no issue's at all with the button's. But, I went ahead and had S&W send me some new one's for when I did have an issue. I put the new one's in, and THEN had issue's with hard to activate button's. Put the original's back in, and now they didn't work right either. I thought I some how messed up my laser. Put the new one's in again and they now worked. Tried the original's again and they were perfect again.

So after switching different button's back and forth many time's, I came to the conclusion that the new button is not the fix. Just taking them out and rotating them is. It also seems to help by squishing them around in your finger's.

I have not needed to do the Q-tip/tube mod yet. But I would do that before I sent my gun back in just so S&W can rotate the button's so to speak.

Hopefully someone is working on a new design. But I kinda doubt it when all they're basically doing is rotating the button's by putting in the same poor design,, to pacify customer's.
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Old 02-24-2011, 10:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ROBODOM View Post
So, should I never expect S&W to offer a repair/recall for this laser problem and can only get a fix if I do it myself or find someone local who will?
So far that is what it is looking like. They totally were not interested in hearing about the permanent solution that I mentioned before, nor even passing the solution on to Insight so they can fix it.

If you find someone local just give them a pen ink tube w/ the dimensions I posted earlier and you will be fine. At least w/ those dimensions as I described it to S&W they said it would not void any warranty.

I tried contacting Insight directly to see if they were interested in the dimensions so that they could implement the fix, but have not been able to speak to anyone thus far.

I do love the gun now that I have the mod, but I understand why folks like yourself are peaved at S&Ws response.
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Old 03-08-2011, 10:23 AM
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Default This one worked for me.

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Hi...here is an easier fix...take the button off...rub them between your fingers and reinsert them...the material needs to soften..after I did this the laser activates fine...no need for Q-tips...Im not sure how that would affect the warranty?

Good Luck!

I wanted to try this one first before busting out the Q-tips. (Although I love that idea). This worked like a charm, so I'll save the Q-tips for my ears.
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Old 03-12-2011, 08:30 PM
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Found this thread after I did a google search for problems with the buttons on my BG380. I read it all and ended up doing the ink pen mod. The laser now works flawlessly. Thanks for posting this. Saved me a call to S&W, and ending up wasting my time.
Serial #EAF32xx, bought on December 24th of 2010.
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Old 03-18-2011, 11:04 PM
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Just did the ink pen mod also. Worked great. Many thanks.
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Old 03-23-2011, 08:20 PM
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Default Mod worked S&W still doesn't have a good fix

I just bought my gun this week (SN EAKxxxxx)it had bad laser switches......I did a web search and found this fix. I installed the mod using a ink pen tube. Its a really small part only a 2mm is plenty. It took me an hour or two to get it right. It works like it should NOW. I must say....with the plastic tube installed the button doesn't have the spring it was designed to have....but it does give the nib the ridgidity it needs.

I did E-mail S&W about the problem and mentioned the mod. They recommended I call and get new buttons. So they are sending me new buttons. Of course they will be the same buttons with the bad design.

Hear is a thought I had though.......what if you took the buttons and painted them with a rubber coating like they make for rubber coating tool handles. Might even be able to turn the button insideout and dip the center nib in the coating. I didn't try to turn the button inside out...might be able to try when I get the new ones. You would have to make sure you got the nip centered before coating. I did notice if you roll the button in your hand you can get the nib centered but it is still too weak. A coating of rubber might make it a little thicker a little longer(you wouldn't want it too much longer) and more rigid.

Thanks to all for posting the mod info.....still think S&W owes us a real solution. An improved rubber button....not just trying the same old flawed design.

I will give S&W credit for quick response to my email (next day) and them sending parts with little hassle to me.

I have a question in to Beretta's customer service for about three weeks....and no answer yet.
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Old 03-26-2011, 09:23 PM
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Thumbs up BG380 Laser Fix

Aww, this is just plain ingenious, not to mention a tad scary! Who on earth knows the inside and outside diameter of a q-tip?
I got my BG today - haven't even shot it yet - still in the "early fondling stage" - and I knew this was a show-stopper. Started googling as soon as I got home, and with a little effort, found a few teasers that led me here, and immediately joined, of course.
Read the entire thread, reviewed the pics, followed the instructions, and Voila! It worked, right down to the advice about sizing the sections of tube - first attempt!
The bad news I am here to report, having read this and most of the other threads I could find on this topic, is that this problem has not been addressed by S&W as of S/N EAK73**. It is utterly amazing that this issue has not hurt the sales of this gun one iota. I was on the waiting list at two different stores (paid-in-full at one) for a month and a half before I got the call.
Anyway - THANK YOU - if I hadn't seen and attempted this fix, I would probably never even have taken it to the range, but straight back to the store. Out to the range tomorrow morning!
Merci,
HobyWan
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Old 04-08-2011, 05:20 AM
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I sent S&W email last week complaining about the long hard trigger pull and the difficulty in activating the laser on my recently purchased .380BG. the only way I can activate the laser with any ease is to push both buttons at the same time using left thumb and trigger finger in a pincer like movement. Got email back from S&W yesterday. They claim there is nothing they can do about the trigger pull as it is set at the factory for 10-12 pounds. Feels more like at least 15 pounds to me. They also said they had new and improved buttons for activating the laser, which they are mailing out to me. Stay tuned...
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Old 04-08-2011, 06:14 AM
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Default Bodyguard 380 Laser button fix

I just got my BG380 a couple days ago. (An early birthday present from the wife.) I did the button fix and now its a night and day difference to activate the laser. I know a couple guys that have a BG and the laser has been their chief complaint. I told them about the fix, so I hope it works for them too. It only took me about 10 minutes to complete. I used the q-tip route vs the pen insert. I also used thin plastic and punched a couple disks out with a paper hole punch, to act as a buffer between the foil pad and the button. It took up some of the gap and protects the laser unit. I just used clear tape and taped the disks over the foil pads. Its all removeable so it should not void any warrantees.

Now I just need to find some pratice ammo, and shoot the hell out of it. I was able to find some Hornady CD FTX ammo for it, so I can use it as my back-up gun at work. But pratice FMJ ammo is hard to find in my neck of the woods. I hope to put a couple hundred rounds though it before I use it for work.
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Old 04-09-2011, 04:28 AM
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I tried removing the buttons and rolling them around between thumb and trigger finger. No luck. So, I tried the q-tip fix, finally settling for a length of about 1.75mm...best I could guesstimate. Perfect fit. It does as advertised! Very easy to activate laser now
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Old 04-11-2011, 12:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ecryder View Post
I sent S&W email last week complaining about the long hard trigger pull and the difficulty in activating the laser on my recently purchased .380BG. the only way I can activate the laser with any ease is to push both buttons at the same time using left thumb and trigger finger in a pincer like movement. Got email back from S&W yesterday. They claim there is nothing they can do about the trigger pull as it is set at the factory for 10-12 pounds. Feels more like at least 15 pounds to me. They also said they had new and improved buttons for activating the laser, which they are mailing out to me. Stay tuned...
Please let us know if the new buttons from S&W wind up working for you.
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Old 04-24-2011, 06:37 AM
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I just purchased this gun (BG380) two weeks ago. My only complaint was that the buttons to activate the laser were extremely hard to use. I had to push the buttons multiple times before the laser would activate. The gunsmith at the store I bought the gun from said there was no fix for this and that it was an inherent problem with this pistol; however, I contacted S&W customer support who sent me new buttons within three days, which were firmer. Now the laser activates easily and I could not be happier with this gun. I tested similar guns in this class, such as the Ruger LCP, and I preferred the looks, feel, price and the performance of the Bodyguard 380. I highly recommend this gun for concealed carry. IMHO, this is the best looking gun in its class, and has a great price (S&W recently lowered the MSRP as of April 2011) to $399

Highlights:

1. Light weight, easily concealed in pocket

2. Locks open on last round

3. Integrated laser:

a. Three modes:

i. Depress buttons (ambidextrous) once: laser on

ii. Depress twice: pulsating laser

iii. Depress third time: laser off.

iv. Automatic laser deactivation after five minutes (for accidental laser engagement)

4. Initial buttons that came with gun (April 2011) very difficult to activate the laser.

a. S&W customer support acknowledged the buttons on some models were too “soft.”

b. S&W mailed new firmer buttons to me, that arrived in three days, and were easy to install.

c. The new buttons worked much better/perfectly, and the laser now activates easily

5. Integrated safety

6. DOA

7. Reliable.

8. Feel of gun in hand is perfect for me (better than others in class)

9. Accurate.

10. Looks smooth and “cool.”



Thank you for all of your reviews.

Best regards,

Tracey
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Old 04-24-2011, 06:46 AM
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I just purchased this gun (BG380) two weeks ago. My only complaint was that the buttons to activate the laser were extremely hard to use. I had to push the buttons multiple times before the laser would activate. The gunsmith at the store I bought the gun from said there was no fix for this and that it was an inherent problem with this pistol; however, I contacted S&W customer support who sent me new buttons within three days, which were firmer. Now the laser activates easily and I could not be happier with this gun. I tested similar guns in this class, such as the Ruger LCP, and I preferred the looks, feel, price and the performance of the Bodyguard 380. I highly recommend this gun for concealed carry. IMHO, this is the best looking gun in its class, and has a great price (S&W recently lowered the MSRP as of April 2011) to $399

Highlights:

1. Light weight, easily concealed in pocket

2. Locks open on last round

3. Integrated laser:

a. Three modes:

i. Depress buttons (ambidextrous) once: laser on

ii. Depress twice: pulsating laser

iii. Depress third time: laser off.

iv. Automatic laser deactivation after five minutes (for accidental laser engagement)

4. Initial buttons that came with gun (April 2011) very difficult to activate the laser.

a. S&W customer support acknowledged the buttons on some models were too “soft.”

b. S&W mailed new firmer buttons to me, that arrived in three days, and were easy to install.

c. The new buttons worked much better/perfectly, and the laser now activates easily

5. Integrated safety

6. DOA

7. Reliable.

8. Feel of gun in hand is perfect for me (better than others in class)

9. Accurate.

10. Looks smooth and “cool.”



Thank you for all of your reviews.

Best regards
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Old 06-17-2011, 10:25 PM
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Default BG 380 Laser buttons

I just picked up my BG 380 today, S/N EAM7XXX. I researched this gun for a month before making the purchase and had been to this sight and read the posts on the button fix. My laser buttons were basically non functional. I had to push extremely hard on them or hold the opposite side of the gun with one hand and push. I have strong hands. One Q-tip, a pair of small electronics flush cutters, the nail file blade of a small Swiss Army knife and a butane lighter and the job was done in ten minutes not counting the time it took me to find the Q tips in my 17 year old daughter's room . When I removed the buttons with the nail file blade both nibs were displaced off center. I cut the Q tip tube so that the nib stuck out and made contact with the foil switch. I did heat the tubes with the lighter to round the edges should they inadvertently contact the foil membrane. No problem with flat surface rubbing issues. The buttons now work effortlessly and I have had no problems with holster turn on issues. Thanks for the fix.

P.S. I think the gun is now a closet Lady Smith though. The Q tip tubes used were pink!
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Old 06-17-2011, 11:45 PM
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I picked up an EAM9xxx yesterday. I don't know if my buttons are what some would consider hard to push or not. It's not effortless... I can't just tap it, but I don't find it hard. It comes on every time.

Compared to the used EAJ that was in the case mine definitely is easier to activate.

Of course, I bookmarked this thread just in case.
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Smith & Wesson Semi-Auto Pistols Thread, Ultimate Bodyguard 380 Laser Button Fix. in Smith & Wesson Semi-Automatic Pistols; This may belong in the smithing the smith subject, however I don't really consider this smithing... I posted this fix ...
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