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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After way too much analysis and hand wringing I broke down and bought the XD(m) Compact 3.8 chambered in .40 caliber. I intend to use this as my primary conceal carry weapon as soon as my carry permit arrives. Somewhere along the way I decided I would rather carry a larger pistol over a smaller pistol but did not want to move all the way up to a full sized or service sized pistol. Once that decision was made it was an easy path to the .40 cal verses 9mm. I want to pause here and readily admit that I will definitely be buying a smaller pocket sized pistol as both a backup and an alternative for those occasions where the Xdm is just too hard to carry and conceal, like in the middle of summer or the quick run to the corner store.

Once the size of the pistol and the caliber were locked in, I looked at the Glock 27, the Kahr .40s, a few Sigs, the M&P Compact and the XD line. Although I strongly prefer a traditional hammer over Striker fired pistols, especially in a conceal carry weapon, the Sig just didn’t do it for me. The articulating M&P trigger looks delicate to me, sort of fragile if you will. I’m sure it’s been tested and tested again but this is my peace of mind here and my thoughts, just sharing. That left the Kahr, the Glock and the XD. I’ve never carried a Striker fired weapon and am still warming up to them, especially in the safety department. Because of that concern, the Kahr was eliminated in favor of the “Safe Action Pistol” design. The XD has the additional grip safety (big plus for me) and the XD just felt better in my hand than the Glock. The XDm felt even better than the plain XD. The XDm won, even considering the extra cost. Sounds like a well thought out and structured analysis but let me tell you, this took several months of looking and touching, researching reviews and comments, specifications, dimensions, more looking and touching, more internet research and on and on. Ugh! Glad that’s over.

I have no illusions about the XDm being light or easy to carry and conceal. Next to the Sig, the XD was the heaviest of the group. I brought it home, loaded 11 rounds in the mag and whoa, it feels like a brick! Great asset for controlling recoil but a big negative when carrying. Pause again…..why doesn’t Springfield list the width in the specs online? Just goes to show you don’t always get the whole truth when getting to know each other over the Internet!

Straight out of the box it is very tight. I’m sure a good workout will help loosen things up a bit. I pulled the slide off and it looks clean and well oiled without being “gunked up”. I’ve heard other posters complain about this with some other brands. The machining looks good without any visible tools marks, etc. I’m a banker not a machinist but the machine work looks good to me.

I would like to try the two optional backstraps but I can’t get the pin holding the factory installed backstrap to move. I don’t want to damage a brand new gun so I’ll worry with that another day. Maybe I should buy a 3/32 “pinch” like the manual says. I guess my “punch” wasn’t the right tool. I’ll go to the hardware store tomorrow and look for a “pinch”. In case you missed the humor, the manual has the word punch misspelled. Twice. I guess the manual was made in Croatia too.

For casual shooting, I like the idea of the extended magazine with the grip extending boot but the boot covers the inspection holes for the round count so count manually when loading the extended mag. Ah, the mag loader. This is my first experience using a mag loader. Seems to help but I need more practice to get the hang of it.

As for the rest of the accessories, time will tell. I would like to acquire an extra factory belt holster. I’ve heard others comment that they tossed them and the mag pouches but I have an idea and could use an extra one or two so if you’ve got ‘em and are going to toss them, send them my way.

Sooooo, how did it shoot?

First, I’m a novice shooter with no formal training so to be perfectly honest, the nuances of trigger pull and reset escape me. Truth be told, that probably describes a whole bunch of us. I shot my first 10 rounds at a distance of 5 yards and all 10 went into the 10 ring. The recoil was much milder than I expected. In fact, until I fired the two weapons back to back I didn’t think the .40 kicked any harder than my old 9mm. Firing back to back, yeah, I was wrong about that. There is a noticeable difference shooting 9 verses .40 back to back but the .40 is very manageable even for a novice like me. Reacquiring a sight picture for follow up shots took a tad longer than I would like but in a defensive situation center mass will probably do just fine and I’m sure I could reacquire center mass easy enough. I kept the target at 5 yards and fired several more 5 shot sets. If I wasn’t diligent with my grip, breathing, etc. the XDm would easily drift away from center as I’m sure any weapon will.

Moving the target out to 10 yards quickly showed my weaknesses. My groups opened up but stayed mostly inside the 8 ring with many hitting inside the 10 ring or just outside. I’m 50 and I wear bifocals. Sighting any weapon isn’t as easy for me as it used to be. I’m extremely happy with that performance. Besides, let’s be honest, I doubt I will ever attempt to shoot anyone at more than 10 yards with a pistol. And if I do, I doubt I will be picking button “A” verses button “B” on their shirt to shoot at.

There were a few quirks or anomalies. Some of those may be my fault but I will throw them out for the sake of discussion.
  • I had more strays using the extended mag than the standard mag.
  • The Winchester Bonded PDX1 180gr JHP Personal Protection rounds were less accurate than the Federal 180gr Full Metal Jacket or the Blazer 180gr FMJ and the Winchesters were significantly more expensive.
  • The standard mag is harder to load and harder to eject than the extended mag.
  • It slings hot, empty rounds far and wide. Good thing my range neighbors were friends of mine.

Bottom line, I am very pleased with this purchase. It shoots extremely well for a larger caliber and shortish barrel and is much easier to control than I was expecting. From a defense carry perspective, considering that they are otherwise identical guns, I think I would have needlessly compromised if I had selected the 9mm verses the .40 caliber. Time will tell on the concealability issue. I’ll report back on that once I get my carry permit, buy a holster and try carrying.
 

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Excellent choice, you will not be disappointed. Look at the crossbreed and com-tac holsters, they make carrying a decent sized gun an easy task. Loose, dark-colored overshirts help a lot too. Congrats!
 

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The crossbreed holsters are excellent, my wife usually does not know if I am carrying or not. The pdx1's are less accurate because they are hollow points. Defensive ammo does not have to be perfect just combat accurate. Try some ranger t by Winchester much cheaper but just as good if not better. When looking for your holster you may want to find a holster that has the "tuck in feature" seeing as how you are a banker and will probally wearing dress shirts a lot. Congrats!

Sent from my ADR6300 using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I will probably order a Cross Breed soon. Still several weeks wait before I receive my carry permit. And no, I won't be carrying at work, bank policy.

Any ideas on why mag choice would affect accuracy? That one has me baffled. Anyone else find the standard mag spring to be extremely stiff? How about the mag eject issue, anyone else experiencing that one? Is that a break-in issue?
 

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I have the identical pistol and love it. I know some of the guys have compllained about the factory holster that came with it, but I like it. I also just got a crossbreed supertuck and it holds the pistol tight to my body, so concealing it is not a problem.
I can also carry concealed with the factory holster. I used it last week. I can wear a large hawaiian shirt, but I go up to an extra large when I carry with the factory holster. I carried it last week for fifteen hours around my wife, and she never knew I was carrying.
 

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I will probably order a Cross Breed soon. Still several weeks wait before I receive my carry permit. And no, I won't be carrying at work, bank policy.

Any ideas on why mag choice would affect accuracy? That one has me baffled. Anyone else find the standard mag spring to be extremely stiff? How about the mag eject issue, anyone else experiencing that one? Is that a break-in issue?
I woud guess you are changing your grip slightly. When you use the 16 round you are not dangling your pinky and being able to use your pinky on the grip may be changing you grip.
Try shooting the 16, but keep your pinky loose and see if that makes a difference. If it corrects the problem, then focus on your grip and how it feels with the 11 round verses the 16. If you detect a difference with the grip then try and get the feel of the 16 to match the feel of the 11.
Not sure if I am explaining it right, but hopefully this will help.
 

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what i would recommend is getting a pierce grip extension for the standard mag. it makes the grip feel so much more solid. great purchase though, congrats.
 

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definitely go with the Crossbreed Supertuck. I have a very hard time with printing when wearing anything untucked, but its a small problem. I've learned I have to dress around the gun. Easiest way I've found is wear a t-shirt tucked in over my gun/holster then a button-up shirt or polo over top...untucked and a size larger. Patterned shirts are a HUGE help...I would have never believed how much of a difference it makes over a solid color shirt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
what i would recommend is getting a pierce grip extension for the standard mag. it makes the grip feel so much more solid. great purchase though, congrats.
Why? I was shooting better with the standard mag. With the standard mag, only aobut 1/4th of my pinky hangs off, 3/4ths is on just fine and doesn't seem to bother me. The longer mag was the one that I found harder to shoot with and keep tight groups.

But you are correct about it being a great pistol. I frequent another forum and all they talk about is Glock this, Glock that, and the 1911 worship is overwhelming. Glad to be among folks here that don't follow the crowd but choose their own path based on what works for them, 9, 40, 45, 3in, 3.8, 4.5, 5.25 all one big happy family. From what I saw at the range today from the "enthusiasts" shooting custom hand loads through their 1911s, Sigs and S&Ws, they weren't throwing out much better groups than me until they broke out the wheel guns. I love this little gun and look forward to getting better with it.
 

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You need to have a similar "feel" when shooting any of your magazines. It will help get and rerain muscle memory for the consistent shots you want.

Just my dos centaos. YMMV
 

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Is the mag ejection issues witha fully loaded mag or empty? I would say the accuracy issues has some to do with grip, also may have to do with the wait difference in the gun. The mags will always be hard to eject when loaded to full cap. This will loosen over a lot of range time and ejections. Remember they are springs and they will take time to get to broken in.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The standard mag's follower spring seems very stiff and hard to load. I have to use the mag loader to get all 11 rounds in the short mag but I can hand load all 16 in the extended mag.

The mag eject issue is mostly with the short mag. It's not a weight issue because it does this with an empty mag or a full mag. You have to push the mag release button really hard to get the short mag to eject. The extended mag seems to eject much easier. None of the guns I handled in two different guns stores had this quirk. I will be buying spare mags and will see if this quirk repeats itself on other standard mags.

As for the grip and other inconsistencies, I'm sure those will cure themselves over time. It's tough to do everything perfect on the first day out with a new gun. At least for me. There is still a bit of excitment about learning to shoot a new gun.
 

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The standard mag's follower spring seems very stiff and hard to load. I have to use the mag loader to get all 11 rounds in the short mag but I can hand load all 16 in the extended mag.

The mag eject issue is mostly with the short mag. It's not a weight issue because it does this with an empty mag or a full mag. You have to push the mag release button really hard to get the short mag to eject. The extended mag seems to eject much easier. None of the guns I handled in two different guns stores had this quirk. I will be buying spare mags and will see if this quirk repeats itself on other standard mags.

As for the grip and other inconsistencies, I'm sure those will cure themselves over time. It's tough to do everything perfect on the first day out with a new gun. At least for me. There is still a bit of excitment about learning to shoot a new gun.
Try loading the 11 round mag and letting it sit a couple of days before you go to the range. I don't know if it will correct your problem, but that's what worked for me when I was breaking in my .40 Compact. No issues since.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Good advice RustednKY but way ahead of you. All my defense weapons are always loaded. Otherwise I'd just use a rock. ;) The mag in question was fully loaded and seated in the magwell for 4 full days prior to getting to the range. I'm hoping you are right and time and use will fix the quirk. Notice I don't refer to this as a problem because it's just stiff, not impossible to use.
 

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my limited research suggests that the 40sw round is better at stopping a threat with bullets on the lighter end. I think the shorter barrel would magnify that to some degree. The heavier bullets are more for barrier penetration I believe.

Overall, it sounds like you go through the same self induced headaches that I put myself through before making a purchase.
 

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my limited research suggests that the 40sw round is better at stopping a threat with bullets on the lighter end. I think the shorter barrel would magnify that to some degree. The heavier bullets are more for barrier penetration I believe.

Overall, it sounds like you go through the same self induced headaches that I put myself through before making a purchase.

Wrong, there are several post on this issue all over this forum. You will get the best ballistics with 165gr or 180gr no matter barrell length. My xd sc likes the 165 gr better. My xdm likes the 180gr.
 
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