Makarov to .380?


PDA






winchester '97
April 16, 2010, 07:58 PM
Is it true all you have to do to convert a makarov to .380 is switch the barrel? Any help is much appreciated and you have my thanks in advance.

If you enjoyed reading about "Makarov to .380?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
LoneCoon
April 16, 2010, 08:05 PM
Depends on the Makarov. I had a mak that cycled .380 ammo just fine, but I wound up with bulged cases. Taught me to pay attention to what I was putting in my gun, that's for sure.

gearhead
April 16, 2010, 08:14 PM
According to what I've read on makarov.com, yes. Although with the abundance of inexpensive Makarov ammo vs. the availability of .380 I don't think I would convert mine.

winchester '97
April 16, 2010, 08:36 PM
How hard is the conversion? im mainly thinking about being able to switch barrels if i run out out mak and want to shoot it, no local suppliers of 9x18 within 20 minutes, but there is a relatively well stocked wal mart 8 minutes from me.

Carl N. Brown
April 16, 2010, 08:43 PM
People insist on shooting .380 ACP (actual 9mm bullet in a case 17mm long) in Makarov pistols in 9x18mm (actual 9.3mm bullet in a case 18mm long) then complain about poor accuracy and bulged cases. Actually I would not shoot .380 in a Pisolet Makarova in original caliber unless it was a dire emergency. But the fact that so many get away with it indicates that apparently all you really need to do is swap out the barrels to go from 9x18mm to .380 ACP. Overall cartridge length is the same between 9x18mm and .380 ACP so the mag works; the head diameter of the cases are slightly different but with a .380 barrel, the extractor appears to get a good grip on the .380 case. Sometimes with .380 ACP in a 9x18mm barrel, manual extraction of a live .380 ACP round (9x17mm) from the firing chamber (9.3x18mm by actual measure) can fail (visually inspect the chamber before assuming the gun has been cleared).

MCgunner
April 16, 2010, 08:47 PM
According to what I've read on makarov.com, yes. Although with the abundance of inexpensive Makarov ammo vs. the availability of .380 I don't think I would convert mine.

I'd been wanting a Mak since last year. I ran across a commercial Mak in .380 at a gun shop for $265, adjustable sight. I passed on it. Seemed a little high, but main thing was I wanted 9x18 for the cheap and available ball ammo for practice. So, I held out. I don't have a Mak, just got a P64 a few days ago, just sayin', I'd keep it in 9x18 if I did, no reason to convert it to .380, not for me. Another thing about 9x18, I'm trimming 9x19 brass for it. I bought dies and a mold when I got the gun as I always do, but was not going to do that considering the brass thing until I found out I could trim 9x19. It works! .380 brass is rare as hens teeth at my range, don't know about yours. I only wish I could use all the .40 I pick up out there. Guess maybe I need a .40....or....just clean it up and sell it on gun broker and use the proceeds to buy .380 brass, maybe. :D I do have a .380, never shoot the thing. It's not a Mak, though.

gearhead
April 16, 2010, 08:47 PM
It's not the sort of thing you'd want to change back and forth. The barrel is pressed to the frame and it's a fairly stout press, generally. I'd think you would want a press so that you could ensure it was all square to the frame.

Deaf Smith
April 16, 2010, 08:53 PM
Saw a Russian Mak, with adjustable rear sight, in .380 for $250.

I'd get it but I have a EG and Bulgie in 9x18 and they are cheaper to shoot!

Now ain't that funny?

Deaf

Marlin 45 carbine
April 17, 2010, 09:04 AM
ditto GearHead, keep it 9X18. somewhat more 'whack' to this round than .380acp too.

Fiv3r
April 17, 2010, 09:14 AM
'nother vote for keeping it as is. A few months of saving can yield you a nice .380. My P-64 is my warm weather EDC. 9x18 is tough to find around here at decent prices, but it's so readily available online and fairly inexpensive compared to a lot of other ammo.

I bought my P-64 last summer when the ammo drought was in full swing. I was in the market for an LCP, but with the scarcity of .380, the price of the pistol compared to the P-64, and the pep I could get out of the cheaper 9x18, it just worked perfectly for me.

After all, the P-64 is just my carry or BUG. If I have to wait a couple days for ammo to come it, no biggie. I just make sure to keep a couple mags filled before I'm totally out. It's not the first gun I would reach for at the end of days.

MCgunner
April 17, 2010, 10:02 AM
Don't know if you have Academy anywhere close, but they always seem to have Monarch 94 grain ball in stock for under 10 bucks a box. I forget the exact price, but I can buy two boxes and it's just shy of 20 bucks even with the 8.25 percent sales tax. It's rather nice to be able to shoot and not have to worry about chasing down spent brass or picking up enough 9x19 to trim to replace it. I have never bought a box of .45ACP ammo, only shoot reloads what with the price of the stuff. Ditto for .38-.357 and .45 Colt. I do have progressives set up for .45ACP,.38-.357, and 9x19. Don't take long to crank 'em out as needed and it's fun, in a way. :D I rather enjoy casting, too, and digging range scrap reminds me of picking dew berries. Free bullets are nearly as sweet as fresh dew berries. :D I won't mess with buying the progressive set up for 9x18 due to the cheap ammo and the fact that case trimming is time consuming, anyway. I'll just keep loading it on my old Lyman turret.

Fiv3r
April 17, 2010, 10:10 AM
oops. double tap:D

OldMac
April 17, 2010, 10:22 AM
It certainly is not hard with the right tools. I keep a barrel, slide (marked for caliber), and spring together for each caliber. I also use maroon grips for Mak and black for 380 just to help remind which caliber is loaded. I think the accuracy is great in both. The mags are the same. I would keep an extra barrel pin around just in case you deform one when changing the barrels. I got the press off Makarov.com. I have never had any problems with split or bulging cases at all. You may have that problem if you don't use the appropriate cartridge with the right barrel.

MCgunner
April 17, 2010, 10:54 AM
I have never had any problems with split or bulging cases at all. You may have that problem if you don't use the appropriate cartridge with the right barrel.

I think Mr. Brown thought this thread was about firing .380 in a Makarov barrel rather than converting with a .380 barrel. I've skimmed over threads and didn't get the gist like that, before.

Onward Allusion
April 17, 2010, 11:12 AM
Yes it's true but why would you want to do that? The 9x18 ammo is cheaper, more plentiful, and has more energy. Don't believe the whispers that 9x18 imports will stop any time soon.

If you really must, it would require a .380 barrel and a press to get the barrel out. You'll also be relegated to FMJ ammo for total reliability 'cause you'll be using the same magazine.


winchester '97 (http://www.thehighroad.org/member.php?u=98147)
Makarov to .380?
Is it true all you have to do to convert a makarov to .380 is switch the barrel? Any help is much appreciated and you have my thanks in advance.

christcorp
April 17, 2010, 12:08 PM
Seems that a lot of people turn down getting 9mm Makarov pistols; Makarov, CZ-82, PA-63, P64, etc... because they say that no one locally sells ammunition. Then some even look at the possibilities of a getting one in; or converting one to; chamber 380. I find this to be one of the most CONFUSING discussions and arguments that have ever hit the gun forums.

1st; unless you are already set up to shoot 380, and have 1000 rounds of brass, it makes absolutely no sense to do ANYTHING with 380acp caliber. Not buy one or convert to one. Ammunition is way too expensive; when you can fin it. 2nd; all these people on a "FORUM" which is "INTERNET" based, and yet they aren't willing to buy ammunition "ON-LINE". You can buy all the 9x18 makarov ammunition that you want for $9-$10 a box. There's literally hundreds of merchants who sell 9x18 makarov ammo. So what that you can't buy it at walmart or your local gun shop. (By the way, I can get it locally, but at $18 a box, why would I? Compared to $9-$10 a box online). These are russian/czec guns. They will shoot all the silver bear and wolf ammo you can feed it without issues. As a price that makes even reloading it not that much of a savings. And you can get plenty of PowerBall, Hornady, and Silverbear HP for personal defense ammunition. And others like Buffalo-Bore have announced it's coming out with ammo also.

Point is; this is the internet. Why don't people use it to buy ammunition as available and cheap prices? Are you afraid of big brother knowing that you bought ammo? Don't have a credit card? (They do take checks/money orders). Especially big stores like Cabelas. Sorry, but turning down one of the best handgun calibers of all time, (I collect mostly military weapons), because you won't order ammo from the internet; and willing to trade it out for a weaker caliber which is 2-3X MORE expensive and 2-3X LESS LIKELY TO FIND; is totally illogical.

Sorry for venting, but don't destroy a perfectly good gun to make it a caliber that logically has less place than the makarov. If you want a 380 in military, then buy a CZ-83. Nice civilian/local produced version of the CZ-82. But don't disrespect the "REAL" 9x18 Makarov pistols. Not when there's absolutely no logical reason to do so. Just order some ammunition.

M2 Carbine
April 17, 2010, 12:42 PM
Unlike the .380 caliber the 9x18 can be fabricated from other calibers.

When I bought my first Makarov 9x18 ammo was very scarce and expensive.
The first thing I figured out was 9mm (9x19) brass can be trimmed 1mm and loaded for the 9x18. To this day I'll still reloading and shooting the 1,000 9mm brass I trimmed years ago.

In case that 9x18 factory bullets completely dried up (and you don't cast lead .364 bullets), light weight 9mm (.355) and .38 (.357) bullets can be loaded for the the 9x18 pistols with satisfactory results. I tested this a few years back and while there is the expected blow-by and slight loss of velocity, the ammo worked fine.

MCgunner
April 17, 2010, 02:50 PM
When I bought my first Makarov 9x18 ammo was very scarce and expensive.
The first thing I figured out was 9mm (9x19) brass can be trimmed 1mm and loaded for the 9x18. To this day I'll still reloading and shooting the 1,000 9mm brass I trimmed years ago.

That would be nice, but I can't find my brass. :rolleyes: I just installed a 22 lb wolf spring in my P64 hoping it wouldn't toss it so far, but it still tosses it too far to find many of 'em. Now, I COULD down load the stuff, I guess, to tame slide velocity and ejection distance more.

I fired 50 rounds of sized, reloaded 9x19 brass based loads a week ago and found 7 of the spent cases. Sure look nice all fire formed. :D Even before the brass was fire formed, it shot about 3.5" at 25 yards shooting a cast RN from a Lee mold that weighs 105 grains, though Lee claims 95 grains. I pick up free lead from the back stop, pick up free 9x19 brass on the range, so I can reload for about 5 dollars a box.

Since I am not having a lot of success finding my spent brass, I figure I'll just scrounge 9x19 brass when I go to the range, supplement my store bought with it. I prefer shooting the Monarch I pick up at Academy since I don't have to worry about where the brass goes, anyway. :D I might back off the Bullseye and see if I can get a lighter load. I did that with 9x19 in my Kel Tec and it drops the brass about five feet to my right, now. All I have to do is spread a plastic tarp to catch the brass. If it changes POI, though, I don't know if I'll stick with that idea. The light stuff shoots actually higher in my KT by several feet at 25 yards. Not bad, though, for practice. I'm thinkin' there might be a different dynamic working with the P64, though, since it's not a locked breach gun. That can have an affect on POI, too. The only way to know is to try.

Vern Humphrey
April 17, 2010, 04:24 PM
I only wish I could use all the .40 I pick up out there.
Finding brass for a gun you don't have is a sign from above.

When I found .22 Hornet brass, I knew God wanted me to have a .22 Hornet.

When I found .223 brass, I knew God wanted me to have a .223.

When I found .45 Colt brass, I knew God wanted me to have a .45 Colt.

When I found 9mm brass, I knew the Devil is a deceiver.:p

M2 Carbine
April 17, 2010, 11:49 PM
That would be nice, but I can't find my brass. I just installed a 22 lb wolf spring in my P64 hoping it wouldn't toss it so far, but it still tosses it too far to find many of 'em
I know what you mean. I have several P64's.

I recently bought a SIG P238. That thing isn't reloader friendly at all. It throws the brass all over.

bluetopper
April 18, 2010, 11:27 AM
A Mak press makes it quite easy to change barrels. I've done so a few times putting threaded barrels on.
The 9x18 is the only pistol caliber I don't reload for simply because of it throwing brass over in the adjacent property.

MCgunner
April 18, 2010, 11:39 AM
Well, it's a bit of a pain, but I find enough free 9x19 to trim that I can keep myself in ammo if, per chance, I might not be able to find any or if the price ever goes ridiculous or something. :D Yeah, I rarely find the spent brass. :rolleyes: I'd rather shoot the ball, don't have to worry about all the BS reloading it. Sorta why I like revolvers, though, but I'm forced to reload .357, .45 Colt, even .38 special, or take out a mortgage on the house for ammo. :rolleyes: :D

winchester '97
April 18, 2010, 12:36 PM
I think if the conversion is that hard ill stick with 9x18. Still pretty amazed that i got it for 125 bucks and no tax at the height of obamarama in '08. Its a baikal with adjustable sights too.

M2 Carbine
April 18, 2010, 01:06 PM
Still pretty amazed that i got it for 125 bucks and no tax at the height of obamarama in '08.
Yes, you did good. It's been some time since I've seen a Mak at the gun shows for under $300.
I'd buy a dozen for $125. No, make that two dozen.:D


I have 16 Makarovs. Several are .380. Although I like the .380 Makarov and I'm "into" .380 with several other .380 pistols and reloading .380, I would not convert a 9x18 to .380.

Al LaVodka
April 18, 2010, 01:58 PM
I converted a .380 TO 9 x 18.

Traditional, cheaper (have a lifetime supply under any, and I mean any, circumstances), on average a little more powerful, slightly wider bullet... Just switch barrels, yes. Really need a barrel press (though they can be head for many tens of dollars) and barrel for cross-pin may not be drilled in advance. Get extra barrel pins if you do this for sake of versatility.

Kinda an obsolete copy, but a very good kickaround gun in 9 x 18 nevertheless.

Al

Cactus Jack Arizona
April 18, 2010, 04:20 PM
No offense to the OP, but destroying a great 9x18 Makarov just to make it shoot .380 would be sacrilege. :eek:

christcorp
April 18, 2010, 04:48 PM
No offense to the OP, but destroying a great 9x18 Makarov just to make it shoot .380 would be sacrilege.

Plus, financially it makes absolutely no sense. Not unless you are already set up to reload 380 and you have a LOT of brass and bullets. 9x18 ammo is so much more available, and between 1/2-1/3 the price. OH; it's also a MUCH BETTER CALIBER.

gearhead
April 18, 2010, 05:31 PM
Even if you reload and already have dies and brass for .380 you'd have to shoot a lot of it to recoup the cost of the barrel, I would think.

Shadow 7D
April 18, 2010, 05:47 PM
Why bother with the conversion, for MUCH less money you can just buy an IJ-70 in .380 or a CZ 83

walksbyhimself
April 18, 2010, 06:11 PM
Finding brass for a gun you don't have is a sign from above.

When I found .22 Hornet brass, I knew God wanted me to have a .22 Hornet.

When I found .223 brass, I knew God wanted me to have a .223.

When I found .45 Colt brass, I knew God wanted me to have a .45 Colt.

When I found 9mm brass, I knew the Devil is a deceiver.:p
+1 to this. I picked up about 200 pieces of 10mm brass last summer from the range. I still don't have a 10mm. And I don't reload. Yet.

WardenWolf
April 18, 2010, 06:25 PM
J&G Sales had a commercial .380 Mak in their showroom when I was up there last week. However, the 9x18 round is superior to .380, is easier to find, and much cheaper. There's no reason to go .380 when you can get a better round for less.

If you enjoyed reading about "Makarov to .380?" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!