The Springfield XD-S .45ACP is my most recent acquisition for a CCW appropriate handgun. My first CCW handgun was chambered in .45ACP and so now is this one....something about my going full circle. The biggest different is the notable size and weight difference between my first concealed carry and this XD-S.
For a semi-auto pistol chambered in .45ACP, the XD-S is very small and lightweight. Oh oh, is he going to do that "Welcome to the world of small and lightweight handguns" thing again? Well, yes and no. If you are familiar with shooting a .45ACP pistol, I do believe you will be pleasantly surprised at just how nicely the XD-S handles. I was expecting much more recoil even though I'd read a lot of forum comments claiming it won't happen. Springfield got the design right on this one, no doubt about it. It handles very well considering it is a major caliber in a very small package.
The XD-S has two safeties, a trigger safety and a grip safety. The trigger is like that of a Glock....with a small blade protruding from the middle of the trigger which must be fully depressed before the trigger will fire the gun. Using a grip type style safety similar to that on the famous 1911 pistol, it too must be depressed in order for the XD-S to fire. I've seen rants in forum threads about grip safeties preventing a person from firing the handgun unless they have a "perfect" grip on the gun. Well, I'm hear to tell you in that the past 7 years, where I've been shooting Springfield XD brand handguns, I've yet to ever find myself in a no-fire scenario due to poor hand placement on the grip safety. After thousands of 9mm and .45ACP rounds down range at the local range as well as some 160 hours of professional training courses where I used my XD handguns, it just hasn't happened. There is no magazine disconnect which means the XD-S trigger can be pulled even if there is no magazine inserted.
Trigger pull on my XD-S comes in right at 6 pounds, 9 ounces which is a little more than what I prefer. With any luck, a trigger kit will be forthcoming from one of the companies such as PRP and I'll be able to get it down around the 5 pound mark. PRP currently has a XD-S spring only kit, which I tried, but it resulted in light primer strikes due to the reduced strength striker spring....that being the only spring in the kit that significantly reduces the trigger pull. I removed it after one trip to the range and a frustrating session with too many "clicks" vs. "bangs" while practicing with the XD-S. It was $20 wasted....but at least it wasn't more. That was the first PRP product I've used that left me disappointed.
Of the three handguns I have in this article, the factory XD-S sights are the best. The front sight is fiber optic. Springfield designed the front sight so that you can swap out the fiber optic filament for a different color. They included extra red and green filament material with the XD-S. Nice touch! The rear sight has two white dots located either side of the notch. You have a good sight picture when all three dots are aligned vertically and the bright fiber dot is spaced equally between the two white dots.
While I've pocket carried the XD-S a few times, I consider it to be a little big for that method. It will fit in a cargo pocket but is pushing the limit on a front blue jean pocket. I use an OWB holster that was built by Zlogonje Gunleathers. It took a couple of weeks to get it broken in but once accomplished, it has done everything I've asked of it. The above link provides more details about the holster.
I should mention the case that the XD-S comes in. It is absolutely the best
factory handgun case I've personally had. I do believe it is solid enough to ship via the airline
and is lockable (a TSA requirement). It reminds me of a Pelican case and while not
that high a quality, it looks like a lower price point attempt at giving the new XD-S
owner a case that won't simply end up on the closet shelf. Another
nice touch by Springfield.
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