Gear Review: Apex Tactical SD Spring Kit

There are two (gunny) things I hate: low combs on rifle stocks, and crappy triggers. And readers, the Smith SD9 VE trigger ain’t nothin’ to write home about. Coming in around 8 – 8.5 lbs, it’s a gritty, terrible road to get there. And like all (or most) things, it can be fixed. But spending a few hundred dollars upgrading a gun that has an MSRP of $379 probably doesn’t sit right with most people. Law of diminishing returns and all that. Our friends at Apex Tactical happen to agree, which is why they sell a Spring Kit for $19.95 that can clean up that mess S&W left in your safe . . .

7 Yards – Rapid Fire

I’m no stranger to the Sigma family of pistols. In fact, I did a writeup back in late June on how to take a Sigma trigger from awful to decent for less than $5. And while the SD series isn’t a Sigma, the guts of the pistol don’t lie. There are some crappy trigger genes in the SD9’s DNA. But for the price of a meal for a family of four at Subway, your SD doesn’t have to be so low brow.

The 4-piece Spring Kit from Apex contains a trigger return spring, a striker block spring, a striker spring, and a slave pin to help during installation of the trigger return spring. The kit promises to improve the overall characteristics of the SD trigger and bring the pull weight down from the 8’s to the 5’s.


As with all of their kits, Apex provides a handy video on how to install your springs.

I found Scott’s video to be very well done and extremely informative. Truth be told, had these instructions been written, there’d still be a pile of SD on the bench. Scott is clearly a talented guy, and if you follow the instructions, you too can install one of these kits. My only issue during the install was getting the trigger return spring pin out of the frame. It took me two weekend sessions and probably 2 hours of struggling before I finally got it. When I emailed Scott for some pro tips, his response was the following.

 I’m sorry you’re having trouble with the SD kit install.  The most difficult part is the removal of that pin.  It’s the same process as removing the Glock trigger pin, it just takes some time and practice.

I did have one customer tell me that he spent nearly 2 hours on it and was about to give up so he called me, I suggested he take his mind off it for a while then come back to it. He called back 2 hours later and said “Man it worked, I took a break, had a couple beers and went back and tried again and it came right out”.  I’m no advocate for drinking and playing with guns, but it worked for that customer.

I took Scott’s advice, took a week off, and came back to it with a clear mind and a small rubber mallet. I gave it a little mechanical persuasion, and within 10 minutes of picking up where I’d left off, things were going back together.

Range Impression

The trigger pull is now under 6 lbs. which is a huge improvement. There’s still a long way to go, but it’s an easy trek until just the last little bit of takeup. The reset point is still wayyyyy out there, as you can see in the video below. I think that could be resolved, but we have to take a step back and ask ourselves if it’s really worth it. Twenty bucks is a small price to pay to get a good trigger in an inexpensive gun.

Apex did a really great job with this kit, and if you have the right tools to get the job done, don’t hesitate to contact them and get one on order. If you aren’t sure of your gunsmithing ability or don’t own the necessary tools, give some thought to sending your SD off to Apex, and they’ll do the install for you. It will take about 4-6 weeks and cost you $80 + shipping. Better yet, find a friend who’s comfortable and pay them a 6 pack of beer to install it.

Apex Tactical SD Spring Kit

  •  Includes: Trigger Return Spring, Striker Block Spring, Striker Spring, and a Slave Pin
  • Cost: $19.95
  • Installation Time: ~20 minutes if you are Scott Folk. Anywhere from 1 hour to 3 hours depending on that TRS pin.
  • Installation Difficulty: With the right tools, fairly easy.
  • Installation Cost: If you choose not go the DIY route, $60 for the installation and $20 for test fire + shipping.

Design * * * * *

The Spring kit is very well designed and comes with all the right stuff to get things done.

Functionality * * * * *

Our T&E SD9 performs flawlessly now. I have had zero reliability issues and would feel totally comfortable carrying the SD.

Overall Rating * * * * *

This is a well-put together kit that will make a “cheap” gun feel like a couple thousand bucks.