As one of the best single stack handguns on the market, the S&W Shield stands out in the world of concealed carry for its compact and manageable size. Despite a solid design and ergonomics, there’s always room for improvement. Here is our Guns.com round-up of the top accessories to upgrade and elevate the Shield’s performance.
1. Trigger – Apex Duty/Carry Action Enhancement
The Apex Duty/Carry Action Enhancement Trigger by Apex Tactical will take that Shield trigger to a whole new level of smooth and clean. With a consistent 5 to 5.5-pound trigger pull, the trigger offers a shorter over-travel and shortened trigger reset.
Featuring a drop-in style construction, the Apex Duty/Carry Action Enhancement trigger requires no special tools or gunsmithing. Simply follow the included instructions or watch Apex’s instruction videos online. Offering both traditional style triggers or flat-faced triggers in a few color options, Apex delivers the most variety for consumers looking to set their Shield apart from the crowd. Apex trigger kits start around $150.
2. Sights – Ameriglo I-DOT or Trijicon Night Sights
Easily one of the best sights on the market, the Trijicon Night Sights will kick low light performance on the S&W Shield up a notch. With the shooter’s choice of either yellow or orange, the Night Sights boast a 3-dot tritium design. The rear sight uses a wide u-shape notch to increase visibility of the front sight post. In addition, the surface of the rear sight has been hooked to give gun owners a means to complete an emergency one-handed slide operation, should the need arise. Priced at $165, the Trijicons are steep in price but deliver on performance.
For Shield owners who just can’t shell out more than $165 on sights, the Ameriglo I-DOT series offers good performance at a lower cost. Slipping in just under $100, the Ameriglo’s steel sights deliver a green tritium rear lamp and a green tritium front post outlined in either green, white or orange for higher visibility. The Ameriglo’s are a straight eight design, so users not familiar with this style of sight might struggle at first. The I-DOT sights start at $89.
3. Grips – Talon Gun Grips
Sometimes you just need a little more to hold onto when shooting – enter the Talon Gun Grips. An economical choice for Shield owners who can’t splurge on professional aftermarket stippling, Talon’s Gun Grips provide either a granulate or rubber texture with full side panel coverage. The grip offers cutouts for the M&P logo on both sides and Talon even supplies gun grips for extended mag models. Available for the 9mm, .40 and .45 ACP model Shields, the gun grips come in a few texture/color options — rubber/grey, rubber/black, rubber/moss and granulate/black. The Talon Gun Grips are priced just under $20.
4. Lasers — Crimson Trace Laserguard
Adding a laser to a pistol is advantageous in situations that call for unique shooting positions. Crimson Trace, one of the largest manufacturers of pistol lasers, serves up both red and green lasers for the Shield. The LG-489 and LG-489G seamlessly integrate a laser sight into the Shield package with a low-profile unit that attaches to the front of the gun. Designed specifically for the Shield, the laser device touts Crimson Trace’s Instinctive Activation technology. This tech automatically activates the laser when the Shield is held in a normal firing position.
No special gunsmithing is required to install the LG-489 and the unit is fully adjustable for windage and elevation. The Laserguard with red laser is priced at $229 while the green laser is priced a little higher at $309.
5. Light — Streamlight TLR-6
A flashlight is an invaluable part of any Everyday Carry kit; but some shooters just can’t handle the added bulk of a tactical light. Streamlight provides a solution to this problem, through its TLR-6 series gun lights. Mounting to the front of the Shield, the lightweight TLR-6 gives users a compact light with 100 lumen output up to 89-meters. With an ambidextrous operation for left and right-handed shooters, the TLR-6 is windage and elevation adjustable. With a durable, IPX4 water resistant and 1-meter impact resistant construction, the light uses two CR1/3N batteries.
For Shield owners who want the light but don’t want to give up laser capabilities, the Streamlight TLR-6 has you covered. Boasting a red laser, the TLR-6 features a run time of 1 hour with LED only or LED/laser combo or 11 hours with laser only. Streamlight’s TLR-6 retails right around $100.
Honorable Mentions: Samson MFG Compact Magwell and Carry Contour Magazine Extender
Released in early 2018, the Samson MFG Compact Magwell and Extender sprang onto the market as an option for Shield shooters. The magwell does the job of extending the grip on the Shield, giving users more purchase and a full grip on the gun. Featuring a flared design, the magwell also improves reloads making magazine insertion easier. The magwell works alongside Samson MFG’s own magazine extension or Smith & Wesson 8-round mags. The Compact Magwell features an MSRP of $49.
The Carry Contour Magazine Extender is an aluminum +1 magazine extension for the Shield. This extension ships with its own retainer plate and is compatible with the factory magazine spring. The extender adds an additional round to the Shield’s own 7-round or 8-round magazines. The extender is priced at $27.