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M&P®45 SHIELD M2.0™ Small size, big bullet, quite concealable....

19/24/2021 I’m easily distracted. My plan was to gather my notes and write this evening, but I played the movie Monster Island in the background, got to the point where they found that the giant starfish had magma for blood and could not, would not, look away. Later, the movie of choice was Monster Hunters,…

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Smith & Wesson’s New M&P® 10mm M2.0 The best M&P M2.0 yet ?


Smith & Wesson has introduced four M&P® 10mm M2.0 pistols: SKU 13387 with a 4.6″ barrel and no thumb safety, SKU 13388 with 4.6″ barrel and thumb safety, SKU 13389 with 4.0″ barrel and no thumb safety and SKU 13390 with 4.0″ barrel and thumb safety. The subject Smith & Wesson M&P® 10mm M2.0 is SKU 13388.

Some detail and some observations

Smith & Wesson M&P®10mm M2.0

SKU 13388
Manufacturer Smith and Wesson
Point of Origin Springfield, MA
Type Striker Fired
Caliber 10mm Automatic
Magazine Capacity 15
Barrel 4.6″
Rifling 1:10″ 5 RH
Overall Length 7.9″
Overall Height 5.6″
Frame Width 1.30″
Weight 29.6 Oz.
Sight Radius 6.9″
Trigger Pull – Actual 4 Lbs. 3 Oz.
Front/Rear Sights High 3 White Dot – Drift Adjustable
Barrel Material SS – Armornite® Finish
Slide Material SS – Armornite® Finish Matte Black
Grip Frame Zytel Polymer 18° Grip Angle
Internal Chassis Extended Rigid Stainless Steel
Thumb Safety
Magazine Disconnect No
Optics Ready
MSRP $665


After collecting a good deal of accuracy, reliability and velocity data, I can honestly say the M&P® 10mm M2.0 is impressive. Made in America and covered by Smith & Wesson’s Life Time Service Policy are a bonus.

The combination of 10mm Auto and the full size M&P M2.0 striker make for a powerful, but manageable firearm with many potential applications.

The M&P® 10mm M2.0’s tall grip fills the hand for solid control and accommodates a fifteen round magazine.

The 4.6″ barrel is long enough to not hamper the 10mm Auto round’s performance, but not so long as to detract from the pistol’s balance or prevent comfortable carry.

The high three dot metallic sights mounted at the slide’s extremes maximize the pistol’s sight radius and facilitate optical sight mounting.

The M&P® 10mm M2.0 Sight Systems

The S&W M&P® 10mm M2.0 has a three white dot metallic sight system. For dimensional reference a picture cannot show, the front sight extends 0.320″ above the slide, the rear sight 0.380″. The front sight blade is 0.140″ wide, the rear sight aperture is also 0.140″ wide.

The slide is cut for optical sights, a poly cover protects the area when no optical sight is mounted. The high metallic sights permit the use of metallic sights with an optical sight in place. Alignment of metallic sights, relative to the red dot in an optical sight varies with the type and model of optical sight.

An accommodating pistol

The M&P® 10mm M2.0 is supplied with two 15 magazines, 7 optical sight adapters and associated fasteners and 4 interchangeable grip inserts. The sight adapters accommodate a myriad of optical sights. In fact, I was even able to install my relic FastFire II by using adapter Number 3 and screw type C. I really need to replace that sight, but I have not been able to kill it.

The grip inserts were blind tested. Inserts are changed by pulling out the small frame tool at the aft bottom of the grip frame and pivoting the grip insert outward from the frame. I settled on the “Medium” insert as the most comfortable after trying smaller and larger sizes. The stippling on the grip area is sharp, but greatly appreciated as a contributor to control. But then I work outdoors a good deal, so I do not have engineer’s tender hands.

No, the slide does not have to be removed to install an optical sight. I had the slide off while running through disassembly and thought I would take the time to photograph the mount cut and sight locating points.


The subject version of the M&P® 10mm M2.0, with medium grip insert in place, put all of the controls within comfortable reach. The Magazine release was a bit of a stretch, but then I have large palms and short, stubby thumbs. It is a family thing. Trigger reset is audible and tactile, for those who need the trigger speed and appreciate this mechanical feedback.

Field stripping


The M&P® 10mm M2.0 is an easy takedown for cleaning and inspection and there are few sub assemblies to manage in that process.. The recoil spring set is captive, the ramped barrel is linkless. Disassembly is basically: check for empty and make safe as per the manual, lock the slide back, use the included frame tool to push down the little sear deactivation lever in the mag well, rotate the slide takedown lever down, release the slide and remove it from the frame. Hit reverse for reassembly.

The 10mm Auto

The 10mm Auto has been with us since 1983. I am going to resist turning its history into a German opera titled “Jeff Cooper, Der Vater Des Bren 10, Aber Norma Machte es Kommerziell” and focus on the S&W pistol and cartridge’s performance.

The 10mm Auto is a well established, high performance cartridge. Shot from revolver or autoloader, it has excellent potential as both a security, defensive and hunting round. Some ammunition manufacturers soft load the 10mm Auto based upon the cartridge’s early development and early evolution. The table below should add clarity to the issue of performance levels, at least by the indicated manufacturer.

Cartridge Bullet
Buffalo Bore Heavy 220 1200 1183 1203 1143
Federal Hydra-Shok 180 1030 1015 1063 1006
PMC Bronze 170 1200 1086 1127 1052
Prvi Partizan 170 1115 1017 1039 1011


The M&P® 10mm M2.0’s accuracy was solid. At 25 yards, shooting from a rest and with a red dot sight in place, five shot groups measured: Buffalo Bore 1.9″, Federal 1.7″, PMC 2.1″, Prvi 2.0″. This was not a statistical exercise based on an averaging of numerous 5 shot groups. These were the first 20 rounds through a new gun, following set up and sighting in.

Yes, I did shoot the pistol with metallic sights. Contrast against dark, light and mixed dark and light targets was very good. Getting sights on target was quick, as was recovery for follow on shots. Groups sizes at 25 yards? Not with an ophthalmology appointment end of month. No, that is not a person who has a positive outlook on life.

In addition to Buffalo Bore, Federal Fusion, HSM, and Underwood all produce 200+ grain loads at or above 1,200 fps MV. Other ammunition manufacturers load this bullet weight to muzzle velocities ranging from 950 fps to 1100 fps. Some folks are a little recoil sensitive and may want to shoot reduced loads. Some people spend a lot of time at the range and may want to shoot inexpensive target ammo.

Winchester generally loads their 10mm Auto and 40 S&W to the same level of performance. Hornady loads their Custom 10mm 180 grain ammo to 1275 fps. The same Hornady product in 40 S&W is loaded to 950 fps, illustrating the true performance difference between the 10mm Auto and the 40 S&W cartridges. Shop around.

Yes, I did mention woodland deer hunting…

200 grain Buffalo Bore
Near-Zero – Yards 11 Mid Range – Yards 57
Far-Zero – Yards 101 Max Ordinate – Inches +3.0
Point Blank – Yards 108
Best Zero : Range 0 – 100 yards
Yards 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 100
Velocity – fps 1200 1180 1161 1143 1126 1110 1095 1081 1067 1054 1041
Energy – ft.-lbs. 639 618 599 580 563 547 532 518 505 493 482
Momentum – lbs-sec 34 34 33 33 32 32 31 31 30 30 30
Path – in. -1.50 -0.12 1.02 1.89 2.50 2.84 2.89 2.66 2.13 1.29 0.14
Drift – in. 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00
Time Of Flight – sec. 0.00 0.03 0.05 0.08 0.10 0.13 0.16 0.18 0.21 0.24 0.27

The 10mm Auto has approximately 37% greater kinetic energy and 17% greater velocity than a 45 Auto has at the muzzle and the 10mm Auto has a 108 yard point blank range. The 10mm Auto is more than the 357 Mag, but not as stout as a 41 Mag. It is the most powerful cartridge chambered in a popular production autoloader.

The S&W M&P® 10mm M2.0’s shooting personality

The Smith & Wesson M&P® 10mm M2.0 is a different kind of 10. The low barrel bore access and full size make it the softest shooting 10mm Auto I’ve shot and I have worked my way through many. Even the slide is easy to rack. Size, weight, the holding leverage of a long grip combine to make the M&P® 10mm M2.0 an easy pistol to shoot.

The M&P 2.0 flat face trigger is… refined. Striker triggers often feel like stretching a bundle of elastic bands. The M&P® 10mm M2.0 trigger is none of that. Pull is light, crisp and brief beyond take up.

The M&P® 10mm M2.0 has a good feel, the controls are well placed and the cartridge speaks with authority. Under critical, serious and/or stressful circumstances, the M&P® 10mm M2.0 would definitely provide a well deserved handful of confidence. Security, personal defense, woodland deer hunting, trail gun… the Smith & Wesson M&P® 10mm M2.0 is a perfect addition to the M&P M2.0 lineup. Glad to see it.

Ruger’s Lightweight Compact Revolver A handful of hammerless 357 Mag

11/07/2021 – Ruger introduced its revolutionary Lightweight Compact Revolver in January 2009; long glass fiber filled polymer fire control housing, forged and anodized series 7000 aluminum cylinder frame, series 400 stainless steel cylinder and 17-4 PH stainless steel barrel. Hammerless, it is chambered for the 38 Special +P cartridge.

As more powerful, higher pressure cartridges were added, Ruger added stainless steel frame models; Aluminum frame for .22 LR, .22 Magnum and .38 Special models and stainless steel .357 Magnum, 9mm Luger and .327 Federal Magnum models.

Ruger LCR Evolution

May 2010, a 357 Magnum version of the LCR, the subject gun.
December 2011 a hammerless, eight shot  22 LR
December 2013, and exposed hammer version and the 22 Mag chamber
September 2014 a 9mm Luger chamber
November 2014, an exposed hammer, 3″ barrel, 38 Special +P model.
September 2015 a 6 shot, 327 Federal Magnum.
Jan 2017 an exposed hammer 357 Magnum was added.

At the time of this writing, there are six hammerless LCR models, eleven LCRx exposed hammer models. All are approved in California and Massachusetts. The hammerless 357 Mag LCR was selected for review as the optimal configuration for the LCR’s intended purpose.


Ruger LCR 357 Magnum

Manufacturer Ruger, Newport NH
Item # 5450
Type Hammerless, Double Action
Caliber 357 Magnum
Mag Capacity 5
Barrel Length 1.87″
Rifling 1:16″ RH
Weight 17.1 Oz
Overall Length 6.5″
Height 4.5″
Width 1.3″
Grip Frame Polymer
Cylinder Frame Blackened 410 Stainless
Cylinder Carpenter 465 Stainless – PVD Finish
Sight Rear Integral U Notch
Sight Front Pinned Ramp
Trigger Pull – D/A Only 9 Lbs 10 Oz.
CA – MA Approved No
MSRP $809

Strength and material to purpose

The Ruger LCR is streamlined contoured aid in concealment. The internal hammer, integral rear sight means no snags on clothing. The soft rounded grip provides purchase while maintaining compact form.

The Ruger LCR is modular, consisting of three main components. The polymer fire control housing is light weight and recoil absorbent. The polymer grip frame houses all fire control pieces in precise orientation and it provides a grip peg to simplify grip interchangeability. A stainless steel cylinder and cylinder frame provide maximum durability in support of magnum and other high performance centerfire revolver cartridges.

Yes, that is a crappy picture taken with my ancient iPhone. Yes, the grip frame detail was important to illustrate and to show there is no mainspring hammer lock that was included in the original LCR release. And, yes, I did not want to wander over to the shop in the middle of the night to take this shot under studio lights because I like you folks, just not that much.

Non stacking, smooth double action trigger

About two hundred years ago, my job was to supervise conveyor paced, progressive, high volume electromechanical assembly. Little automation, a lot of super assemblers. When setting up lines, the criteria was that no task could take longer than 8 seconds and no tools would be required to complete the task. So time and motion studies of a wide variety were employed. At the core of all of it were the fewest motions possible and a task simplified so a new employee could be trained and dropped into the assembly line within an hour. That was about money, this is about self defense and survival.

The hammerless double action is the fastest revolver for self defense because it requires the fewest number and simplest of motions to affect a defense. Close in, its use requires little beyond safe handling, pointing at the target and squeezing the trigger. Proficiency training shortens response time and extends useful range. To those ends, Ruger gifts LCR users with a refined trigger.

The LCR’s camming trigger pull is not like any other double action. It is smooth and uniform in pressure until let off. Close to 9 lbs as measured, it feels significantly lighter than a pull gauge reads, making it easy to hold on target and shoot accurately. Think of it as a very useful tool when refining double action shooting, point and shoot or sighting.

Appropriate sights

The Ruger LCR has a pinned, ramped front sight. Yes, it is replaceable for folks who own a proper punch set and 4 oz hammer and can connect the two without striking fingers or firearm. Shop Ruger has inserts in white, green, red fiber optics and Tritium insert. Smooth top revolver and little to snag.

LCR diet

357 Magnum Ammo
Hornady Critical Defense
Barnes Vor-TX
140 1265 1189
Remington Wheel Gun

The three types of cartridges were selected as being of a common variety and useful. I omitted a 180 grain bear load, not because the Ruger LCR could not handle it, but rather because it was an overkill for the application.

I did not add a 25 yard “Group Size” column to the table as I felt it would be an incorrect measure of the LCR’s performance. For me, this type of revolver is for use within a dozen yards. At that range, it was relatively easy to put five shots into a standard 3.5″ x 2.5″ playing card using a two hand hold.


The Ruger LCR is a lightweight, confidence instilling compact firearm. It carries well and it is very controllable in use. I would have no problem shooting 100 rounds a month to maintain proficiency. I would probably not use it as a handload development firearm, where long days are spent at the shooting bench. The Ruger LCR was designed for the former, not the latter.

The LCR held up in heavy use with full tilt 357 Mag ammo. It did not shoot loose or malfunction in any way. The finish is durable and easy to clean. When I was done shooting it looked as good as it did when received. Excellent revolver.

Smith & Wesson’s Governor Part II Yet more ways to burn ammo....

10/27/2021 Rarely does a picture with a backdrop make it to the pages of Real Guns. Photographically, the tendency is to focus on the subject, the firearm, and to remove distractions. However, it seemed right to place a little artful photography to aid in telling the story…. the many stories. (opening kettledrum – 2001: A…

Real Guns is a membership supported publication. Membership offers access to: all current and archived articles, handload data, ballistic calculators, and the Real Guns Image Gallery. Membership is available for $29.95 for twelve months.

Please either Sign inorJoin Real Guns.

Smith & Wesson’s Governor Part I Ten years down the road

09/26/2021 – I am well aware of when the S&W Governor was introduced. Yes, I did pass on examining shotshell accommodating revolvers because I could not see a practical application. The Governor is ten years old, I am ten years older. Perhaps, now that we have both had our space, we can be civil and…

Real Guns is a membership supported publication. Membership offers access to: all current and archived articles, handload data, ballistic calculators, and the Real Guns Image Gallery. Membership is available for $29.95 for twelve months.

Please either Sign inorJoin Real Guns.