M&P 340 - Front Sight worth it?

PistolShooter

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Not looking to start a debate on why carry XXX gun or caliber.

Specifically looking to add a small DAO J-Frame to the collection and was originally thinking a 642/442 though now am wondering if the M&P 340 is worth it to get a pinned front sight that is also a night sight. Looking for feedback from those that have had one or shot one vs a traditional blade front sight. How much does it help sight acquisition?

I don't really care about the ability to shoot 357, more the fact that does the extra cost justify the front sight given it is what it would likely cost me to have a gunsmith modify a 642/442.
 
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pupchow

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I don't have a revolver with a night sight, but I do have a J-frame with a HI-VIZ fiber optic sight. I do prefer the more visible sight compared to the other revolvers I shoot with, which have blade sights. For a pointing type aim, it adds a bit of confirmation & confidence.
 

Billy2

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M&P 340 is by far the best J frame I have ever had. I love the front night sight with the rear trench, by far worth the extra money for me. Add an apex trigger kit and a crimson trace and you will have an amazing carry gun.
 
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A 360j will run you a lot less and keep the scandium frame and pinned in sight ( at the expense of a exposed hammer and .38 only)
 

wmass

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I went the 360j route and plan on swapping the sight. Im also considering bobbing the hammer.
 

greencobra

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those little j frames are basically point and shoot at the distances you'll, God forbid, ever need to draw. I wouldn't spend the money on a night sight, fiber optic sight or anything else and just keep it as is.
 
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The pinned front sight on the 340 is a significant improvement over J-frames like the 642 which have the front sight integral to the barrel. The 340 also has a deeper rear sight notch, and that is another improvement. However, whether the improved sights are a worthwhile value is a personal decision. A 340 costs a lot more than a 642, and I am not sure the cost is worth it just for the sights. Of course, the 340 can also take 357 magnum ammo. But 357 magnum in a short barrelled lightweight revolver is not very useful for most people.

Regarding whether sights are even useful on a J-frame, that is another decision that is up to the individual. J-frame revolvers are difficult to shoot well, but they are actually much more intrinsically accurate than many people think. So the sights could be useful in some situations. In the right hands, a J-frame can be effective at 15 yards or further.

If you do get a J-frame with an integral front sight, it can be improved by adding some color. I find that the grey sights on a 642 are completely invisible in certain lighting conditions. But using a black sharpie marker on the rear sight, and some model paint or nail polish on the front sight, is a big improvement. I prefer a black J-frame like the 442, and then I find that just a little paint on the front sight makes the sights usable.
 
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+1. Most snubbies are intrinsically accurate, but difficult to shoot accurately. This problem can be overcome with practice. The real problem is that most shooters are listening to the wrong "authorities".
A friend, trained by a local "guru", has been brainwashed into the idea that a snubbie is only good for seven yards max and refuses to even attempt shots at longer distances; after all, its only point and shoot "belly gun".

Nothing could be further from the truth. With practice the average shooter can get good results out to 25 yds. The "point and shoot" crowd presuppose that the target offered by an assailant will be a full body shot at close range. What if only the head is exposed or the distance is longer than anticipated?

The best way to prepare to defend yourself is to practice with sighted fire at varying distances to give yourself well rounded skills to meet any eventuality. The "point and shoot" gurus would do well to watch Rob Leatham's video on sighted fire vs point shooting where he demonstrates that using the sights can be just as fast.
 

rocket500

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Just a little practice with a snub nose and you can push your useful range well beyond self defense distances. I have no trouble hitting a paper plate at 50 feet with my Ruger LCR.

If you are not fully committed to S&W the LCR has a better trigger, better grip and can be had with either a front fiber optic or night sight factory.
 

PistolShooter

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Ended up getting a great deal on a new 442 with no lock. Decided it wasn't worth the extra money for the night sights and after 150 rounds in my first range trip I am very happy with the choice. I found myself shooting it extremely well and better than some of my small autos.



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Cuz

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The front sight on the 340 is absolutely not worth the extra money. When you by the 340, you get more than just the front sight for your extra money. In reality, for personal protection, your money would probably be better spent getting the cheaper S&W J-Frame and the put a set of crimson trace laser grips on it.


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dcmdon

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+1. Most snubbies are intrinsically accurate, but difficult to shoot accurately. This problem can be overcome with practice. The real problem is that most shooters are listening to the wrong "authorities".
A friend, trained by a local "guru", has been brainwashed into the idea that a snubbie is only good for seven yards max and refuses to even attempt shots at longer distances; after all, its only point and shoot "belly gun".

Nothing could be further from the truth. With practice the average shooter can get good results out to 25 yds. The "point and shoot" crowd presuppose that the target offered by an assailant will be a full body shot at close range. What if only the head is exposed or the distance is longer than anticipated?

The best way to prepare to defend yourself is to practice with sighted fire at varying distances to give yourself well rounded skills to meet any eventuality. The "point and shoot" gurus would do well to watch Rob Leatham's video on sighted fire vs point shooting where he demonstrates that using the sights can be just as fast.
I agree with most of your post.

My 340PD is very mechanically accurate, but like you implied, the short barrel, heavy trigger and small grip make accurate fire difficult for thosw who don't practice.

I AM DEFINITELY a believer in point shooting at distances out to about 15 ft. Beyond that the sights on a 340 are more than adequate for hits out to 75 ft.

Gammon - two years ago I took the Reflexive shooting class at Sig. The whole class is about shooting without reference to sights. After 2 days I was able to put very very fast hits on target at distances out to about 30 ft with my G19. When applying this same technique to the J frame, I'm less accurate. So I consider 15 ft to be the outside limit.
 

Cuz

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Two of the best qualities that laser grips offer is the confidence they give a less experienced shooter and the "fear" (for lack of a better term) that they instill in a less than "hardened" criminal. A big bright front sight isn't quite the same.


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dcmdon

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I never saw much value in lasergrips until I took the Reflexive Shooting class at Sig.

When you draw, index and point at the target, you suddenly get feedback. Its a great training aid as well as a way to do point shooting more accurately.

I actually own 2 J frames with CT lasergrips. One is a fairly large, flat section, grippy ruber, 3 finger grip. The other is a small, round, smooth, hard plastic style boot grip.

The laser really illustrates how much easier it is to shoot the larger grip. Anything but a perfectly straight back squeeze against the 10+ lb trigger with the boot grip and the gun noticeably rotates in your hand. With the larger grip, it si much easier to squeeze faster and have the point of impact stay on target.

Don
 
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I agree with most of your post.

My 340PD is very mechanically accurate, but like you implied, the short barrel, heavy trigger and small grip make accurate fire difficult for thosw who don't practice.

I AM DEFINITELY a believer in point shooting at distances out to about 15 ft. Beyond that the sights on a 340 are more than adequate for hits out to 75 ft.

Gammon - two years ago I took the Reflexive shooting class at Sig. The whole class is about shooting without reference to sights. After 2 days I was able to put very very fast hits on target at distances out to about 30 ft with my G19. When applying this same technique to the J frame, I'm less accurate. So I consider 15 ft to be the outside limit.
Check out Leatham's video on sighted fire vs point shooting.
 

Cuz

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I never saw much value in lasergrips until I took the Reflexive Shooting class at Sig.
When you draw, index and point at the target, you suddenly get feedback. Its a great training aid as well as a way to do point shooting more accurately.
I actually own 2 J frames with CT lasergrips. One is a fairly large, flat section, grippy ruber, 3 finger grip. The other is a small, round, smooth, hard plastic style boot grip.
The laser really illustrates how much easier it is to shoot the larger grip. Anything but a perfectly straight back squeeze against the 10+ lb trigger with the boot grip and the gun noticeably rotates in your hand. With the larger grip, it si much easier to squeeze faster and have the point of impact stay on target.
Don
I've also had 2 or 3 of the different grips CT offers for the J-Frame. While the bigger, rubbery grips made the gun easier to shoot, I always ended up switching back to the smaller hard plastic model for my J-Frames because I was self-conscious that the rubbery ones were pulling at my clothing and causing the gun to print. They also seemed to slow down my draw from an ankle holster as I felt it was more difficult to pull up my pant leg over the rubber grip. It's probably all in my head, but if I think it, then it must be true...
 

dcmdon

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Cuz - I found I reached for the J frame with the boot griip when I carried in my pocket.

When I carried on a nice tight pancake holster on my belt, I used the gun with the larger grip.
I don't really worry about printing. While in CT (where OC is legal and pretty trouble free) I've done some experiments with very poorly concealed guns and its amazing how people don't notice things.

Gammon - I've been shooting in the practical shooting games as well as taking defensive style handgun classes since 1998. Up until I took the Sig class, my speed had pretty much plateaued. I had simply accepted that I would never be fast. I was always the most accurate guy on my IDPA squad, but never anywhere near the fastest. I just figured it was the price I paid for shooting bulls-eye for 10 years before ever getting into the practical shooting games.

Then I took the sig class and it was a revelation. My splits went down. I mean DOWN. Part of what I learned was to vary how much I referenced the sights depending on the distance. At 50 and more, its a hard focus on the front sight. At 35 ft its more of a flash sight picture. At 15 ft, its point and shoot.

I haven't watched Leathanm's video yet. But I will. I guess all I can say is that I was a very experienced practical shooter who had plateaued after just barely making Expert in IDPA SSP. (BARELY) And learning to point shoot properly, made a huge difference.

Don

p.s. Do you have a link to a video or will the google give me what I want?
 
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I've been involved in practical shooting since 1978 and have experimented with many techniques but always come back to sighted fire unless the target is too close to miss. Sorry, but I don't have a link for the Leatham video.
 
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Yes. For whatever reason, I shoot my 340 more accurately than my 642 all day every day. Maybe just personal preference, but the sight seems to make the difference.
 
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