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  #1  
Old 01-03-2011, 10:43 PM
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Default Newbie question about Bodyguard 380's goofy laser.

Help!!

The "iron" sights are great, and the early teething problems I read about this gun with early serial numbers have not presented themselves on this EAFxxxx BG 380.

But wowsers! The laser is nearly unusable! Oh, I can turn it on and off, and it projects a dot OK. But if I want to hit anything with this gun (wife's actually) I have to shut the laser off.

She hates the loooong trigger pull, but it performs as expected in all other areas, no FTE, no FTF, all is well except the laser. I actually REALLY like the gun and wish I had one to carry, when my CCW is finally in hand. It's more concealable than my Kahr PM9 (Parabellum).

I can zero the laser on the BG380 and the laser seems to hold, it's just that the bullet strike seldom is where expected. Could it be that the Slide To Frame fitment is suspect?

When I shoot it using the iron sights, offhand, weaver style grip, aiming carefully, the groups at 5 yards are around 4 inches for a full mag.

BUT, with the laser turned ON, even squeezing more carefully(!), I am hardly on the paper.

The barrel to slide "lock-up" seems acceptable for a close quarters gun, but the slide to frame.....well I just dunno.

Laser also seems to present an eliptical spot rather than a dot, but whatever.... I REALLY can't see that as the problem here.

This is such a great little shooter, once you understand the longish trigger. If you can't hide this dimunitive little piece, you aren't trying. And I love the concept of the included laser, but something seems amiss....

Thanks for any help!!

Last edited by goldwingnut54; 01-04-2011 at 07:41 AM.
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  #2  
Old 01-03-2011, 10:52 PM
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Unfortunately, the lasers are not an automatic cure-all for pistol shooting.
It sounds like a training problem that could be cured with qualified instruction and dry-fire practice. The weaver style and careful slow trigger pulls are not the technique I teach with these pocket pistols. The gun needs to be firmly clamped between your hands and fired quickly but smoothly. Then try strong hand, then weak hand, point shooting, etc.
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Old 01-03-2011, 11:02 PM
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I have the same problem with mine, but this is the first laser for me. Having only fired a handful of rounds with the laser, I know I have a lot learn. On the other hand, in a real life self defence situation, I don't see the laser coming into play.
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Old 01-04-2011, 11:11 AM
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Default Loose laser or shooter distraction?

If you adjust the laser to the same aim point as the iron sights, then sighting with the laser should result in shots with the same placement and accuracy as the iron sights.

Two possibilities:

The unlikely one is that the laser is loose in the frame. You should be able to determine this simply by sighting down the iron sights. If the laser moves from shot to shot, maybe it is loose (or maybe your iron sight picture isn't as stable/repeatable as you'd like).

The more likely possibility is when you are shooting with the laser your focus on the red dot is interfering with a smooth, consistent, trigger pull. If that's the issue, then turning on the laser but shooting with the iron sights but allowing the laser to have an increasingly greater "feel" in the aiming - might help develop better technique with the laser.

M.
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Old 01-04-2011, 02:21 PM
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Default Laser *could* be loose.....

Laser *could* be loose in the frame, I guess.

I am able to aim with the laser AND the iron sights---shot after shot---comparing the two aimpoints. They do in fact, vary somewhat after some shots, but only marginally..at the distances intended with this little weapon. For example, at 7 yards, the two aimpoints might vary by 2". After firing, the next aimpoints might look closer, by visually comparing them, via my crude, seat-of-the-pants analysis.

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Originally Posted by beegee3AT View Post
Two possibilities:

The unlikely one is that the laser is loose in the frame. You should be able to determine this simply by sighting down the iron sights. If the laser moves from shot to shot, maybe it is loose (or maybe your iron sight picture isn't as stable/repeatable as you'd like).

The more likely possibility is when you are shooting with the laser your focus on the red dot is interfering with a smooth, consistent, trigger pull. If that's the issue, then turning on the laser but shooting with the iron sights but allowing the laser to have an increasingly greater "feel" in the aiming - might help develop better technique with the laser.

M.
I'm no master sharpshooter, that's for sure, but if I consistently print saucer sized groups at 7 yards using the sights, but a basketball would be pretty safe against my laser sighted shooting at the same distance/technique, I suspect might be looking at a combination of problems.

I am not new to shooting with iron sights either, but the bulk of my hangunnery has been with 22LR through a well used Ruger Mark 1. Secondary shooting was with my (recently stolen ) Glock 19 or the Taurus 99, (copy of the Beretta 92?) both in 9x19. I've seldom shot in recent years not knowing WHY..... my errant shots went awry.

Laser sighting is new to me, but with repeated dryfire (dummy rounds) practice, I continue to be dumbstruck by how horribly differently the paper prints from what I'd expected, at such close ranges anyhow.

Mystified, but not giving up....
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Old 01-04-2011, 09:57 PM
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I have a DAO revolver with Crimson Trace laser grips. Dry fire with snap caps and the laser really pointed out what was doing when I pulled the trigger. It's a good training tool to smooth out what you're doing.
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  #7  
Old 01-05-2011, 09:58 PM
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Default Loose laser

There have been some reports of the laser not being tight on the frame from the factory. Field strip it and check the very small allen screw on the centerline of the frame. If that is tight then you need to double check the laser sight. At 7 yards the red dot should be resting on the top of the front sight when sighted properly. If not, use the allen wrench provided and make the adjustment as prescribed in the manual. There is no magic, if the sights and the dot line up then the bullet will be there shortly thereafter. At longer distances the dot will be higher than the iron sight picture and inside of seven yards the dot will be lower. That is due to the angle of the laser not being parallel with the sights. Theoretically, if you want the laser to be parallel you will have to sight it in to be about an inch and a half (more accurately the distance measured from the center of the barrel to the center of the laser lens) below the sight picture at 25 or more yards. That in mind, expect that you will always hit 2 inches higher than the dot at close range.

Good luck

Last edited by Copnomore; 01-05-2011 at 10:00 PM.
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  #8  
Old 01-06-2011, 11:11 AM
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Default Laser *could* be loose.....

<snip>There have been some reports of the laser not being tight on the frame from the factory. Field strip it and check the very small allen screw on the centerline of the frame. If that is tight then you need to double check the laser sight.<snip>

Thanks, copnomore. This could easily prove to be the missing ingredient. I've shot too much in my 56 years to think that it is ALL me, though that is still on the table.

The hole placement should ultimatly resemble the laser aimpoint..... to the same degree that it does the iron sight aimpoint.... given the same technique, no? The only obvious variable is the aiming, theoretically.

Stan
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Old 01-06-2011, 03:51 PM
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Stan,
The laser is mounted below the barrel by more distance than the iron sights are mounted above. In order to get the theoretical hole on the target to be were the laser dot is you have to sight the laser in at the specific distance, of your choosing. Any change in distance will place the hole somewhere below or under the red dot. I know you know this but I'm just refreshing your memory. Because the laser is mounted lower than the barrel there is always a slight angle "away from parallel" with the barrel. So the distance you choose is the most accurate distance you will have for the laser sight. I hope this explanation helps. One poster mentioned he places an empty cartridge on the slide and dry fires with a snap-cap. This will improve your concentration and muscle memory while on the laser sights. Try squeezing slowly and find that "breaking point" then concentrate on squeezing up to but short of the breaking point, again concentrate and squeeze for the final discharge. Eventually, the staging of the trigger will be done as you begin to aim and the concentration on sights or laser is just a finishing touch to a good target. So to answer this question; The hole placement should ultimatly resemble the laser aimpoint..... to the same degree that it does the iron sight aimpoint.... given the same technique, no? The answer is yes, but only at one distance, the one you sighted the laser in at. I have shot in competition years ago and have been a law enforcement firearms instructor on and off for over 25 years. If it's any consolation to you, I can shoot a three inch pattern mag after mag at 7 - 10 yards with this gun, when I use the laser at that distance the pattern is about the same. When I use the laser and shoot from the hip, it looks like a shotgun blast. Its all in the aim, concentration, and execution.

Last edited by Copnomore; 01-06-2011 at 04:27 PM.
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  #10  
Old 02-21-2012, 04:39 PM
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I've just gotten my Bodyguard and put thru a box of ammo to test it with and without the laser. Never had a laser before so its going to take me a bit to "Zero" it in. I did have one distinct problem though. I put Pachmyer grip on the gun and after ejecting the mag it slips down and covers the opening prohibiting me to reload another mag. Think its a design flaw. Sent it back to the company.
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Old 04-01-2012, 06:41 PM
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New to S&W Forums.... Just bought a BG-380 last month, shot 30 +/- Rounds through it. Before I cleaned it I turned the laser on and it was over 2 feet high and to the right of my iron sights, must have moved while shooting. The laser also turns off at random times, between shots. The screw that holds the laser in has a stripped head, supposedly I bought a "new" gun but I know I did not strip the head. The laser body appears loose and crooked in the frame as well. This could possibly be a reason why some people are having trouble with shot/laser variation.
Long story short, Love the gun, annoyed by the laser. Have written S&W about it, we'll see what happens.
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Old 04-01-2012, 09:41 PM
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I to am new to this sight. My bdygrd 380 though has been excellent. The iron sights and laser were dead on at 8 yds. I really couldn't believe it when I first shot it, I never expected to hit under 2" free hand with both sight systoms from the factory. IMPRESSED!
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:14 PM
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I've had my BG 380 for about a year. Had no problems with the laser until recently. The left button didn't work. I disassembled it and inserted a piece of ink pen tubing into the buttons and it works perfect. When I placed the laser back in I over tightened the screw and now it's striped. I guess it's ok until I have to replace the battery. Will take it a gunsmith buddy and have him do it. The laser screw is touchy. You need to make sure it's in ok because if it isn't it will back out during firing...you're in trouble. Otherwise it's a great gun and my summer carry.
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Old 04-15-2012, 06:55 AM
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Correction. Will no longer be my summer carry. Ordered the Shield in 40 & 9 from my LGD. Will trade in my BG.
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Old 04-15-2012, 11:05 AM
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Illinois has concealed carry?
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Old 04-15-2012, 12:38 PM
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It might do S&W well to offer a non-laser version of this gun. In all honesty, I wouldn't buy a gun that has a laser as part of its frame or body. Its a deal breaker for me. I think this gun would be so much more appealing without it. S&W? how bout it.
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Old 04-15-2012, 02:19 PM
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Quote:
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Illinois has concealed carry?
Illinois doesn't have a CCW. Still hoping. There are legal ways to do it though. I have a Florida CCW for out of state travels.
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Old 04-15-2012, 05:32 PM
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Illinois doesn't have a CCW. Still hoping. There are legal ways to do it though. I have a Florida CCW for out of state travels.
Just make sure you dont ccw in Illinois. Jail and you'll lose the foid.
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Old 04-15-2012, 05:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pote View Post
It might do S&W well to offer a non-laser version of this gun. In all honesty, I wouldn't buy a gun that has a laser as part of its frame or body. Its a deal breaker for me. I think this gun would be so much more appealing without it. S&W? how bout it.
If they came out with a non laser version I would buy it. But I have no problem with the laser since I dont use it. When the battery goes dead I wont replace it so I dont have to worry about stripping that little screw.
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:04 PM
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No worries. I would never do anything illegal. Too much to lose.
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Old 04-15-2012, 10:33 PM
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No worries. I would never do anything illegal. Too much to lose.
I heard there was another push for Il ccw.
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Old 04-16-2012, 06:09 AM
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There is. Pike county passed an ordinance allowing CCW. Obviously it can't super cede state law but it's a start. Chicago politicians are the problem. There are hopes it will pass within a year. This year was the first where Illinois politicians south of I-80 ran on a CCW platform...that's unheard of here. Cross your fingers.
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Old 04-16-2012, 06:56 AM
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As a cop in Illinois, I wish (and hope) CC eventually becomes law. Too many people are shot each day in Chicago and if I was a resident there (I was at one time), I would be screaming at city hall. Every citizen has the right to self defense and if stopped by the police, just let the officer know you are carrying. It would not bother me a bit.

The scum of society may think a little harder about robbing and sexually asaulting anyone, knowing their "targets" may be armed in Illinois.

Join the NRA and vote to keep your gun rights.

TAKJR
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Old 04-16-2012, 07:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TAKJR View Post
As a cop in Illinois, I wish (and hope) CC eventually becomes law. Too many people are shot each day in Chicago and if I was a resident there (I was at one time), I would be screaming at city hall. Every citizen has the right to self defense and if stopped by the police, just let the officer know you are carrying. It would not bother me a bit.

The scum of society may think a little harder about robbing and sexually asaulting anyone, knowing their "targets" may be armed in Illinois.

Join the NRA and vote to keep your gun rights.

TAKJR
Amen!! My sister-in-law and brother-in-law are both Chicago cops. Both are pro CCW. In fact they don't know a cop who isn't. Crime in Chicago has gotten out of hand...murder capital of the US. CCW will happen in Illinois eventually.


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Old 04-16-2012, 10:55 AM
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My daughter lives in West Chester. I really like visiting Chicago .. so friendly for such a big city compared to New York. I just don't care for the liberal views and the outright disregard towards the Constitution.
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Old 04-16-2012, 01:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IllinoisCCW View Post
There is. Pike county passed an ordinance allowing CCW. Obviously it can't super cede state law but it's a start.
While it's true that local law cannot supersede state law, please note that what Pike County voters passed was a "voter initiative" and is not a law. But it's a great start, and here's hoping that the other counties in Illinois follow Pike County's example.

Voters approve concealed carry ordinance in Pike County, Illinois: Now What?
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Old 04-16-2012, 03:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BuckeyeChuck View Post
While it's true that local law cannot supersede state law, please note that what Pike County voters passed was a "voter initiative" and is not a law. But it's a great start, and here's hoping that the other counties in Illinois follow Pike County's example.

Voters approve concealed carry ordinance in Pike County, Illinois: Now What?
Thanks for adding. I do hope other counties follow suit. It's overdue and just the right thing to do. I do believe the anti-second amendment folks are running out of options. Right now the chicago politicians are proposing an ammo tax and gun registration fees. i dont think they will pass but it just shows their contempt

I have a Florida CCW since I do some traveling from state to state. My hopes are that eventually they approach it like a drivers license where all states accept other state CCW.


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Old 04-18-2012, 02:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dakshep1 View Post
I've just gotten my Bodyguard and put thru a box of ammo to test it with and without the laser. Never had a laser before so its going to take me a bit to "Zero" it in. I did have one distinct problem though. I put Pachmyer grip on the gun and after ejecting the mag it slips down and covers the opening prohibiting me to reload another mag. Think its a design flaw. Sent it back to the company.
Try a slice of bicycle inter tube You can put single layers, multi-layer, trim to fit and save a lot of money. I have it on all my small CCW guns.

Last edited by GeorgeP; 04-18-2012 at 04:44 PM.
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Old 04-18-2012, 04:54 PM
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Here's a general comment regarding guns with Laser, Bodyguards included. You have to learn to two different methods of aiming and shooting. With iron sights you do aim at your target. With a laser you don't aim, you simply tag the dot on the target from your chest, waist, side, anyplace other than trying to use the iron sight and laser together. If try to use them together you risk "chasing the dot" instead of focusing on your target. Lost reaction time. Practice both methods.
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Old 04-21-2012, 11:05 AM
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Gosh, that is strange. I can put (5) shots into 3+ inches all day at 10 yards with my laser?
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Old 04-21-2012, 02:11 PM
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Quote:
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Gosh, that is strange. I can put (5) shots into 3+ inches all day at 10 yards with my laser?
And that's as it should be. But, you should be able to do the same thing without viewing down the iron sights. The issue is a self defense "mental" thing where your eye is trying to do two things at once, that it shouldn't - target view with the iron sight and find and place the red dot. Can be done, but takes time to chase that dang dot AND align the sights. If using a laser you want to tag and shoot from any position in one motion...so to speak. Don't add in the task of aiming. Oh, and this isn't my idea, it comes from several self defense gurus I've watched and read.
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