Are all Makarov's created equal?


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BRad704
May 20, 2010, 04:49 PM
I know only a tiny bit about these guns, but am already beginning to love them... I got to hold one (and a Bersa 380) the other day and I love the way it fits and feels for a smaller pistol. According to the older guy working teh shop (who CC's his own Mak), the Bersa was designed after the Mak's.

My main question is, Are all nationality of Makarov's created equal? The one I looked at was (I think) Hungarian and in very good condition for $319.j

I am looking to trade away my SKS for a semiauto to keep for HD and eventually CC. Plus I really like the size so that my wife can shoot it too, and the all steel construction feels great! You KNOW you are holding a gun, albeit a smallish one...

Is there any particular country of origin to seek out? or more importantly AVOID???

Many thanks in advance, and if anyone wants to trade for a 1982 Sporterized Norinco in Monte Carlo stock w/ scope... lemme know. :)

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WardenWolf
May 20, 2010, 04:54 PM
East German Maks are generally considered the best. The Russian ones are probably some of the worse ones. I have a Bulgarian Makarov. I'm not too happy with its accuracy, although I suspect I just got a bad one because others report they're very accurate. I can't figure out what's up with it, though I'm considering rebarreling it with an American-made barrel. Bulgarian ones are normally considered some of the best, as they have chrome-lined barrels and generally better parts tolerance.

zoom6zoom
May 20, 2010, 05:02 PM
Had my EG out shooting last weekend. It's a great little shooter.

BRad704
May 20, 2010, 05:03 PM
Thanks for the quick reply Warden... I did some reading in the mean-time and found what you said already; Look for E. German or Bulgarian, not so much for the Chinese and Russians... I could have swore the one I looked at said Hungary, but maybe not.

Here's a decent Wikipedia history on the Mak's...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Makarov_pistol

WardenWolf
May 20, 2010, 05:12 PM
My Bulgarian Makarov is beautiful in fit and finish, but I'm not sure what's up with it. Rebarreling it with a new American-made barrel will be easy and cheap, though. I've ordered a set of Marschal grips (http://www.marschalgrips.com/) for it, even though I've put some nice rubber grips on it already.

BRad704
May 20, 2010, 05:15 PM
Are these something that is realistic for CC and SD? I like the SA/DA, but not having a mag release at the trigger is a bit odd to me. I guess that's why I like the Bersa also, I just like the 9x18 round.

WardenWolf
May 20, 2010, 05:30 PM
It's a bit large, but I conceal mine crossdraw without a problem. I even have a holster that lets me tuck my shirt in over it, and it's totally concealed. It's much more comfortable to wear a pistol crossdraw because otherwise the grip hits the chair or whatever you're seating on and makes it a bit uncomfortable. The mag release is easy to use, and out of the way. A normal Makarov holds 8+1, and can feed hollowpoints reliably, so you likely won't need to change magazines in a pinch. Here's an idea of what I've with the gun:

(1) Installed a Wolff 22-pound recoil spring.

(2) Installed black rubber grips (soon to be replaced with nice wooden grips).

(3) Wear it crossdraw, handle forward, on my left side. The holster is right behind my side belt loop. I use either a Don Hume 715 Makarov holster, or a cheap nylon holster that lets me tuck my shirt in over it.

BRad704
May 20, 2010, 05:33 PM
Good to know, and it is still smaller than the 4" XD9 that is my dad's EDC.

I think I am really ready to trade away the SKS now...

WardenWolf
May 20, 2010, 05:41 PM
If you want good rubber grips, Pearce Grip (http://www.pearcegrip.com) makes a good replacement grip. It feels great in the hand. Between that and the spring swap, it's a fun, comfortable pistol to shoot. Contact me if you're looking for Makarov resources. I know a lot about these guns.

Rule3
May 20, 2010, 06:13 PM
Not sure if you want a "true Makarov or just a pistol chambered in 9x18.

I hated the triggers on all the Makarovs I tried until I came upon the CZ82.
I have several other CZ's and feel they are one of the best guns for the money.

It has a wonderful trigger, polygonal rifling and is scary accurate.

Got it at AIM surplus when they had free shipping. Two mags and a holster.

Parts for the CZ 83 (springs) will work in it. Best $200 gun I ever bought.

They still have them,

http://www.aimsurplus.com/product.aspx?groupid=104

docnyt
May 20, 2010, 07:51 PM
If wander over to makarov.com you will be reading all day. Gunboards also has a dedicated Makarov forum. As has been said, the East Germans seem to be the best shooters.

Flash!
May 20, 2010, 09:33 PM
Wardenwolf.... that was the first time I ever heard anyone say the Russian maks are the worst..... I have two of them.... one I shoot and carry...... it has never malfunctioned in anyway... I have second one still new in the box, never fired but it sure is pretty....

what makes you say the Russians are the worst?

WardenWolf
May 21, 2010, 12:08 AM
Just less accurate than some of the others. They're very reliable, and very nice looking, but they're not quite up to some of the other countries' offerings. Generally speaking, Romania and Bulgaria are the two top countries of choice for semi-auto ComBloc firearms. Yugoslavia has some good SKS's, though.

Pilot
May 21, 2010, 06:08 AM
My two Bulgarians are my favorites, and I carry one of them sometimes. Both are very accurate. My EG has the best fit and finish and is also a good shooter. My Russian Commercial model was made in Satin Nickel and in .380 (B-West Import). It is also a great shooter and very accurate. You really can't go wrong with a Pistolet Makarov.

BHP FAN
May 21, 2010, 06:23 AM
I have the Bulgarian, and love it, but may I recommend the PA 63? I know the OP said steel, but the PA 63 mostly is, with a very strong aluminium alloy frame, and with a more ''Western friendly'' magazine release.My PA 63 fires the same ammo as my Mak, has the same takedown, and cost a third as much, so the OP can KEEP his SKS, which he really should, anyhow.

BRad704
May 21, 2010, 07:42 AM
There is actually a PA63 in the for sale section that the seller mentioned trade for an SKS...

What should a fair-good condition PA63 be selling for? Just so I have SOME reference... Because I have seen people talk about getting them for $100-150 before.

emilianoksa
May 21, 2010, 04:10 PM
I have a Russian Mak.

There is a big market for them in S America, because they are cheap, tough and reliable.

Although they are civilian models, coming straight from the factory, they do not have the adjustable rear sights that you find in the States.

These have the same fixed sights as the military types, and are indistinguishable from them.

As far as I can see quality and accuracy are fine.

However, I've not seen an E German or Bulgarian version, so have nothing to compare mine to.

I heard somewhere that the Chinese ones were of an inferior quality, but I've never heard bad reports of the Russian ones.

Snowdog
May 21, 2010, 04:35 PM
I had a Russian commercial makarov (IJ-70) that I was more of less happy with it, so I can't bash 'em.
However, in my experience, I find the CZ-82 preferable in just about every conceivable way.
Unless you are wanting a makarov simply to have a makarov, it might benefit you to look into other offerings as well, especially the CZ-82.

BRad704
May 21, 2010, 05:20 PM
I'm really leaning more towards the PA-63 now...

WardenWolf
May 21, 2010, 06:17 PM
The PA-63 is impossible to get parts for, and is a little more prone to breakage due to its alloy construction. It is, however, a beautiful gun, and I want one. It's probably one of the nicest looking service pistols I've ever seen. For the record, and this is something I learned on the P-64 forums: do NOT use Wolf 9x18 ammo. Their primers are too hot and will burn off the tip of the firing pin over time. Stick to Silver Bear, PRVI Partizan, S&B, the like.

jeepguy
May 21, 2010, 06:21 PM
my cz 82 isn't pretty alot of holster wear but she is a good shooter & i have not had one malfuction of any kind. you can even carry it cocked & locked if you like.

Litlman
May 21, 2010, 11:17 PM
I have 2 Bulgarian Maks and they are very accurate. Bone stock except for pierce grips on one. Cut the grass today with it in my front pocket today. I Just picked up a Feg SMC in 380 for a good price. There is allot of info. here on Maks. Hit the search function .

rkammer
May 22, 2010, 01:16 AM
Brad, I may have missed it in this thread but want to clarify that if you are buying a PA-63 or any pistol made in Hungary, you are not buying a genuine Makarov. There's a big difference between a pistol that shoots 9 x 18 Makarov ammunition and a genuine Makarov pistol.

The genuine Russian Makarov pistol was only made in four countries, Russia, East Germany, Bulgaria, and China (Norinco). All the parts for these guns are interchangeable. All the other guns that shoot 9 x 18 caliber ammo and are not made in these four countries are not Makarovs and their parts do not interchange. Just wanted to repeat this again for the good of the order. :)

rondog
May 22, 2010, 02:25 AM
Here ya go Mak lovers, this'll make ya sick..... http://www.militaryphotos.net/forums/showthread.php?83534-Gun-horror-death-of-6000-unused-Makarov-TT-and-Colt-pistols

Snowdog
May 22, 2010, 06:44 PM
That is just completely wrong. What in the world was HK's motivation to make such a stipulation?

Such a shame....

Full Metal Jacket
May 22, 2010, 06:52 PM
Is there any particular country of origin to seek out? or more importantly AVOID???



you should avoid mak's in general. get a cz-82/83. far superior in quality.

bdb benzino
May 22, 2010, 07:21 PM
you should avoid mak's in general. get a cz-82/83. far superior in quality.


This is one of the most unexperienced and incorrect things I have ever heard!! While the Mak may hold less rounds, both pistols are of great quality. Some people dont need to compensate for extra ammo, and 7-9 rounds is plenty.

Full Metal Jacket
May 22, 2010, 09:35 PM
This is one of the most unexperienced and incorrect things I have ever heard!! While the Mak may hold less rounds, both pistols are of great quality. Some people dont need to compensate for extra ammo, and 7-9 rounds is plenty.


:eek:

your post is analogous to saying pintos are the same quality as mercedes.

i've fired quite a few of both, and the Mak's are have painful edges along the back of the grip, 30lb trigger pulls, the sites would often shift during firing, and it has far more muzzle jump than the same fixed barrel designed CZ 82/83.



i wouldn't have made the comment if i didn't have the experience to form my opinion ;)

gearhead
May 23, 2010, 12:02 AM
That hasn't been my experience with the Mak. Especially the trigger pull, my Bulgarian isn't bad at all. Now the little P64 before I changed springs, THAT had a 30 pound pull...

Pilot
May 23, 2010, 07:49 AM
That hasn't been my experience with the Mak either. The trigger pulls are fine for a military pistol and get better with use. Mine aren't painfull to shoot and are VERY accurate. If you don't like the feel of the grip, excellent aftermarket grips are available like the Pearce grip. Makes it very comfy to shoot. I think we just have some Mak haters here. :rolleyes:

BRad704
May 23, 2010, 09:16 AM
i think u will find haters in any situation... but i do welcome any and all reviews, so long as the fussing doesnt get my thread closed down... :)

regarding trigger pull, i have heard that about the 64, but also that there are lighter springs to help that... the PA-63 should be approx 13-15lbs if i remember correctly from what ive read.

and im sure my dad will be a hater if i mention buying anything that doest say Springfield on the slide...

Snowdog
May 23, 2010, 10:52 AM
Oh, I don't think Full Metal Jacket is a Mak hater, he's just been spoiled by the CZ-82... just as I have been. :D

How can one not become spoiled with a pistol that's seemingly built around ergonomics, is amazingly accurate and reliable while having usable sights, an excellent trigger and topped off with controls in the proper place.

Maks have a lot going for them though! However, when CZ-82s are selling for less than Maks (currently anyway), I just found it difficult not to throw the CZ-82 option into the fray while slathering it with just deserved praise. After all, they are quite awesome.

bdb benzino
May 23, 2010, 12:51 PM
There is nothing wrong with the CZ 82, in fact I am thinking about picking one up lately. But that does not make the Mak equal to pinto's and the CZ equal to Mercedes, and that comparison is hating at its finest!!lol. Some people do not like pistols they do not own. I have never fired any pistol that the sights jumped around, and I find my E. German Mak to be soft shooting not painful. All the things he said about the Mak he fired makes me wonder if he knows exactly what a Mak is!!lol.
Not to mention they are comonly refered to as "reliable as a revolver" and have the fewest number of parts and are more simple, which hints at more reliable in the long run. JMHO!

emilianoksa
May 23, 2010, 01:05 PM
The CZ 83 is actually much more expensive than the Mak here.

It is undoubtedly an easier gun to shoot, and has an excellent trigger.

And yet there's something about a Mak that made me choose one over a CZ, apart from price.

I love its simple, elegant lines, and, unlike the CZ, the Mak is a gun that has history. It's also easier to carry.

I'd love to have a CZ as well. It's a lovely shooter.

rtaylor
May 23, 2010, 02:54 PM
My Bulgarian Mak is one of the most reliable pistols I own. It will shoot accurately every single time, no matter when the last time you cleaned it. The quality versus dollar point is unmatched (I did get mine for $200.00 w/ 2 sets of grips, 2 holsters and 5 magazines). It is small enough to carry in any pocket as long as you don't wear tight leather pants (or shorts!). Buy one and shoot it, if you don't like it put it in a safe.

millertyme
May 24, 2010, 02:55 PM
All this reading about guns is making me crazy! I have a new to me CZ 75B and an EAA Witness P 45 I haven't been able to go out and shoot yet and all you people do is keep talking about all the other guns I want to get my paws on! ARGH!!!

On a more reasonable side, I have looked at them all. The "real" Maks are pretty sweet and would make for a fine CCW. The P64 is a nice one-off, but not the same as a decent Mak. And as for the CZ82, if you can conceal it, why not have 12 rounds in your magazine? I could conceal my P95, if you can believe that, and I loved the idea of 15 rounds. The fit and finish on the CZ82 was pretty amazing, especially for a $200 pistol, but the Bulgarian Mak I handled wasn't too bad, either. However, for the same price and not that much difference in size, I would pick the CZ.

Dnaltrop
May 24, 2010, 08:26 PM
My old man has fallen in love with his... owned 2 holsters 4 months before buying his first pistol.

My hands are huge, and it's a comfortable little gun in my hand (though not yet had the chance to fire it)

What intrigues me most, is the Spetsnaz automatic-chambering holster for them. (edit, It appears to be called the EFA-2)

the gun is carried loaded, but un-chambered, and in less than half a second the user can draw downward, and the holster works the slide, chambering a round in the process, or ejecting any round within already through a small vent.

Obviously, if someone grabs for the gun, unless they already know what the holster does, they'll draw upward, leaving you time to disarm them before they can ready the gun.

BRad704
May 25, 2010, 09:23 AM
^ interesting idea on the holster that chambers a round for you, but I think I will remove as many 'potentials for error' as possible from a SD situation.

christcorp
May 25, 2010, 09:55 AM
The CZ 83 is actually much more expensive than the Mak here.

It is undoubtedly an easier gun to shoot, and has an excellent trigger.

And yet there's something about a Mak that made me choose one over a CZ, apart from price.

I love its simple, elegant lines, and, unlike the CZ, the Mak is a gun that has history. It's also easier to carry.

I'd love to have a CZ as well. It's a lovely shooter.
The CZ-83 is NOT the same as a CZ-82. Yes, it's part interchangeable, but the CZ-82 is the REAL 9mm Makarov chambered Military/Police Czech gun. The CZ-83 is NEW and much more expensive. And generally, chambered for 380. The CZ-83 has NO real history. The CZ-82 does have history. And the CZ-82 is usually much cheaper than a Makarov.

Back on topic. I LOVE my East German Makarov. But there is no way that it touches the quality, ergonomics, and accuracy of my CZ-82. Makarovs are very nice guns, but CZ-82 are great guns. Granted, the CZ-82 has only been around since 1982+/-, and the Makarov has about 30 years more of history, but that 30 years gave the czechs time to improve on the pistols and come up with a much better firearm. Yes, I love my E. german Mak, but the CZ-82 is so much better.

North Bender
May 25, 2010, 11:05 AM
Because my 9x18 CZ-83 has a square trigger guard it could have reliability problems compared to the CZ-82?

It's always funny to read people's rants on which is the "better" gun. It's like trying to convince someone apples are better than oranges. I like them both and each has some advantages. The Makarov has the marked advantage of being able to completely dissassemble (try taking a CZ-82 completely apart) so home smithing is pretty easy; parts are cheap, and it's slightly smaller than a CZ-82. Does that make it a "better" gun? I won't say so, but it may have advantages that some will appreciate over the CZ-82. The 82 feels better in my hand and carries more rounds. To each his own.

wojownik
May 25, 2010, 05:20 PM
For "true" Makarovs (Makarov PM), your options are Russian, East Germ, Bulgarian, and Chinese. Unless the OP is just generally seeking a pistol in and 9x18 makarov caliber.

Russian, EG and Bulgarian Makarov PMs are very good, reliable shooters. I had a friend that served as a junior NCO in a Soviet armored company (mid 1980s) - his LT (лейтена́нт) had an "accidental discharge" when pointing his Mak between my friends legs and decocking. That's the one anti-Russian mak story I've ever heard, but it sounded more like user error (there was alcohol involved, ahem). Otherwise, the Russian military Maks are harder to find and more expensive than the Bulgarian Maks. Personally, I'd go with a Bulgarian Mak as a shooter, and if you ever find a Russian Mak PM, that may be a collector.

The Chinese Mak PMs are not as good as the others, but some see them as collectible as well.

Then as a variant from the Makarov PM is the Polish Wanad (P-83). They are also inexpensive, and an accurate though somewhat more utilitarian design. The other Polish pistol in the 9x18 caliber is the P-63. I like mine, but to make it really usable - because of its impossibly hard DA pull - some work needs to be done. These are not Makarov pistols, per se.

The Hungarian FEGs are not quite as good as the above. I got rid of my PA some time ago. More a Walther clone than a Makarov.

The CZ-82s are in a different class of pistol, IMHO. Excellent design, just a very different pistol. I love mine. Ergonomic, accurate, virtually indestructable. It's doesn't happen to be a true Makarov PM, if that is what one is looking for.

christcorp
May 25, 2010, 05:26 PM
I consider the polish P-83 and P64 and the Hungarian PA-63 totally nothing as a variant of the true Makarovs. The FEG PA-63 is a variant of the Walther PPK.

The BEST Makarov is the E. German, Next is the Russian. Chinese and Bulgarians are pretty much a wash. Just that the Chinese is hard to find, that they are more valuable.

You are correct that the CZ-82 is in a class all it's own. Then again, it wasn't even developed for another 30 years after the Russian Makarov. So, the Czechs had a few years to improve on the design, while using the same caliber.

GLOOB
May 25, 2010, 10:40 PM
Attention, PM Makarov (and CZ-82/3) owners, please! Could you stop posting on how great a VALUE your pistol is?

That might have been true - 10 years ago.

I've only seen one anywhere less than $300.00, and I've seen barbell weights that had a better fit and finish than that example.

So just keep in mind that it's 2010 before posting how underrated your $400 dollar surplus pocket pistols are. Yes, we know. You got a great deal on yours. Enjoy.

Wishoot
May 25, 2010, 11:25 PM
Attention, PM Makarov (and CZ-82/3) owners, please! Could you stop posting on how great a VALUE your pistol is?

That might have been true - 10 years ago.

I've only seen one anywhere less than $300.00, and I've seen barbell weights that had a better fit and finish than that example.

So just keep in mind that it's 2010 before posting how underrated your $400 dollar surplus pocket pistols are. Yes, we know. You got a great deal on yours. Enjoy.

Just picked mine up from AIM with two mags and a holster for $229 out the door. Not sure where you're seeing them for $300.

Snowdog
May 25, 2010, 11:27 PM
I've only seen one anywhere less than $300.00
Shop much? (http://www.aimsurplus.com/product.aspx?groupid=104)

That might have been true - 10 years ago.

The CZ-82 wasn't C&R until 2007. The supply is now showing signs of drying up.

We will continue to annoy you personally until you purchase one. Those are our terms.

Seriously, just ignore whatever annoys you; you can always continue to scroll down ya know.

WardenWolf
May 25, 2010, 11:30 PM
Gloob, I paid $260 for my Bulgarian Makarov before the price dropped, and I still consider it a good deal. I'd challenge you to find a nicer brand new pistol for that price. The fit and finish is superb, and it was basically brand new and unfired. So consider this: I paid $260 for a gun that was essentially "New old stock". Good luck finding that kind of deal on a quality new commercial gun. You're not going to. Until you can honestly say you can get a brand new commercial gun, with all the reliability of a proven military design, for that price, it's a good deal.

christcorp
May 26, 2010, 12:29 AM
I just bought another CZ-82 (Needed a brother) at a gun show about 3 weeks ago. Got it for $200 + tax = $212 out the door. Gun dealer in town has another E. German Makarov. He doesn't want too much for it, but it comes with like 4 magazines. So he wants $350 for it. Great price for it with 4 magazines. I just don't need that many. I have plenty. He was honest and said if I could find someone to buy 3 magazines, he's sell me the E. German for $250. I'm tempted to buy the whole thing and gunbroker the extra magazines. With what I have now, I probably already have 11-12 makarov magazines. Don't even know where they all are.

Anyway, the price of the 9mm makarov chambered pistols are STILL a great deal. Sorry Gloob, but take the gloob out of your eyes and look around. You'll see great prices. Except on gun broker where everything is over priced.

P64: $159
PA-63: $189
Polish P83 $230
Bulgarian Mak: $230
CZ-82: $219

These are very good prices. The PA63 are drying up quick. So are the polish P64. The CZ-82 are still out there; but within about another year, that will be about gone too. Pretty soon, gunbroker and their high prices will be the only place to find them.

And I do agree that when these guns pass the $300 mark, they really aren't worth the price unless you really like military/police weapons. Once you pass the $300 mark, there are many used guns of good quality that can start to be found. But under $300, the 9x18 pistols are still some of the best deals out there. Especially for the ammo. For new guns, sorry, but Hi-Point is still a good gun for the price. But that's another topic.

GLOOB
May 26, 2010, 03:46 AM
Wardenwolf, where did you get yours?

I drove up to J&G personally, a couple weeks ago, the day after I saw the price drop. I was SURE I was about to buy my first PM Mak. Maybe they were holding out on me, but the "best" ones I saw were in terrible shape. The casting on the frames was very rough, the finish worn off, the safety catches stained bright orange from cosmoline. The original red handles were so worn down you could barely see the ribs and the star was completely worn off. They looked like WWII relics.

Instead, I picked up one of their P-64's in excellent condition. Unissued, from the looks of it.

I bought a PA-63 a couple years ago, when they were "flooding the market," so to speak. Back then, per the gun forum consensus, I got ripped off at $150.00. Today, I'm glad I got "ripped off" because last one I saw at a gun show the guy wouldn't go a dollar less than $240.00.

Prices on ALL guns (except GLOCKS) has gone up quite a bit in the last few years - at least in my non-FFL world where I buy guns I see IRL, not over the internet. The last CZ-82 I've seen was listed at $449.00. I'm not kidding. When I finally found a decent makarov for $280.00, I would have gladly purchased it, if it wasn't in .380! All the "GLOCK wannabees" XD, MP all cost the same or MORE than GLOCK, around here. Another gun I thought cost less than a GLOCK was the FNP-9. When I finally found one for sale, it was $650.00.

So if I sound like a troll, it's only because I'm JEALOUS! :)

WardenWolf
May 26, 2010, 03:59 AM
I ordered mine from AIM Surplus. They're out of them now. Note that dried cosmoline residue can make a firearm APPEAR rough until you clean it. Also, the reddish safety and sight was intentional, although a bluing pen will darken it in about 2 minutes if you don't like it. I also made a trip to J&G Sales and got a P-64. I'm happy with both guns. Kind of wishing I'd picked up that P-83 they had, too.

Here's a picture of my Makarov. I've since installed a set of Pearce rubber grips on it, and I have a set of wooden Marschal grips on the way:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s279/WardenWolf_1982/th_Makarov.jpg (http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s279/WardenWolf_1982/Makarov.jpg)

GLOOB
May 26, 2010, 04:17 AM
Very nice looking gun, Wolf! I'd be quite pleased with that PM for what you paid! :D

Your cosmoline theory is intriguing. I might have to drive back up there and take another look. I did find one annoying "defect" on my P-64 that turned out to be nothing but dried cosmoline. But I can't imagine that these particular pistols were "brand new and unfired," like yours was, considering the way the handles were worn.

WardenWolf
May 26, 2010, 04:29 AM
Give it a good hard rubbing with a cloth rag. Chances are the "roughness" will rub right off. Bulgarian stuff is very high quality, and I doubt they'd even issue a gun if it was as bad as you describe. They wouldn't go to the effort and expense to chrome line the barrel if they couldn't even finish it well. When I was up there, they also had a new commercial Makarov in .380 in the showroom. I already had my Makarov, though, and was looking for a P-64 so I could share ammo. I brought my father along with me, and he also got a P-64 for himself. We've pretty much settled on 9x18 for our concealed carry pistols.

GLOOB
May 26, 2010, 04:45 AM
Ohhhh...:banghead: I suppose it could have been dried cosmoline all over the grips? Great. Now I have to drive back up there and buy another gun. :D

sidetrack: I like 9x18 for the cheaper ammo, compared to .380. I never gave much credence to the better theoretical maximum ballistics. But after comparing the 2 rounds in person, I was surprised to find there's a noticeable difference in size. The 9mm mak bullet looks like a miniature .45 ACP. The .380 bullets look... cute. And 9mm mak bullets can't even squeeze into a .380 ammo tray! I suppose this at least makes for a psychological difference!

WardenWolf
May 26, 2010, 05:03 AM
The 9x18 round puts a big hole in the paper, too. I've got some Silver Bear hollowpoints, although I normally carry S&B FMJ because 9x18 is a little weak to get good penetration with hollowpoints. We also had a few feeding issues with the Silver Bear ammo in our P-64's. It's good range ammo, but for self-defense I'm trusting the S&B.

Wishoot
May 26, 2010, 07:27 AM
I ordered mine from AIM Surplus. They're out of them now.

Just called them on Monday and they appear to have them in stock again. I hope so, because I ordered one over the phone.

bdb benzino
May 26, 2010, 02:13 PM
I just traded a guy yesterday localy for a Russian IZH-70 with 4 mags for around $300!! I love it so far and it is flawless with HP ammo. It is not quite as smooth as my E. German Mak but very nice and it barely looks used. I am loving these Makarovs!!

BRad704
May 26, 2010, 04:21 PM
So how bout this twist on teh question (now that i know more about Mak's in general)...

If you needed a CC gun with $250 cash in your hand, do you seek out an orig EG Mak? PA-63? P64? CZ-82?

Fastcast
May 26, 2010, 04:45 PM
So how bout this twist on teh question (now that i know more about Mak's in general)...

If you needed a CC gun with $250 cash in your hand, do you seek out an orig EG Mak? PA-63? P64? CZ-82?


I'd go CZ-82 first but than I'm biased :D ..... Mak 2nd, P64 3rd, PA-63 last.


http://i3.photobucket.com/albums/y62/fastcast/CZ82.jpg

WardenWolf
May 26, 2010, 05:36 PM
So how bout this twist on teh question (now that i know more about Mak's in general)...

If you needed a CC gun with $250 cash in your hand, do you seek out an orig EG Mak? PA-63? P64? CZ-82?

This depends primarily on how big a gun you're able to comfortably conceal. Keep in mind that the East German Makarovs were higher capacity (12 round vs. 8), and thus had a longer handle than other Makarovs. Extra handle length is particularly BAD for concealed carry, as this is the single biggest factor affecting comfort and concealability. It greatly affects comfort when carried strong side or behind the hip, and affects concealability if worn crossdraw.

Now, that said, the original Makarov design is at the upper end of what I'd consider a concealable firearm for most people. Any bigger and it's going to either be uncomfortable or print noticeably. The CZ-82 is slightly bigger than the Makarov, and thus I don't really recommend it for this role. Same for the PA-63. That leaves the original Makarov and the P-64.

My father and I both bought P-64's from J&G for concealed carry, and we're very happy with them. Ours were unissued and unfired. After installing upgraded recoil springs and hammer springs, they're fun little guns to shoot. Even pleasant. They're just big enough to fit the hand comfortably. They conceal great, too. We carry them in Don Hume Makarov holsters, and they fit like a glove. So far they've been perfectly reliable with S&B ammo. They've had a few hiccups with Silver Bear, though I suspect this will go away as they break in more. They're still brand new pistols.

I typically carry the Makarov over the P-64. I've learned to conceal it by wearing it crossdraw. It's mostly a matter of personal preference, and the fact that, if I can conceal a better gun, it makes more sense to do so. I fitted mine with a Wolf 22-pound recoil spring to make it more pleasant to shoot. So far it's been 100% no matter what I've loaded it with. I can even conceal it with my shirt tucked in with a cheap $10 nylon holster I bought. The P-64 is a little small to conceal in this way and remain comfortable and accessible, though, as it tends to seat too deep in that holster due to its overall smaller size. It works perfectly in the Don Hume IWB Makarov holster, though.

So there we go: the CZ-82 and PA-63 are, in my opinion, too large to comfortably conceal, as is the East German variant of the Makarov. The original Makarov, though, and the P-64, can easily be concealed by an average-sized person. They're all very good guns, but if you're going for a concealed carry piece go for the original Makarov or P-64.

BRad704
May 26, 2010, 05:44 PM
^ Well stated, and I will take all that into account when I get to buy one. I "was" leaning toward teh PA-63, but that was really only due to mag release placement.

The p64 I was shying away from due to the reportedly dreadful trigger pull, but if that can be fixed by a spring change, then why not!

bdb benzino
May 26, 2010, 05:46 PM
It is the Russian that was a 12 rounder not an E. German. There are also Russian 8rd versions.

GLOOB
May 26, 2010, 06:04 PM
Of the following four:
(and I only own the first 2, to be honest)

P-64
Pros: the smallest, thinnest, and easiest to conceal.
Cheapest.
Great fit and finish on these guns.
Chrome lined barrels.
Though small, the sights are very nice. Probably second to the CZ.

Cons: probably the worst DA pull and not much can be done to improve it, without turning the SA into a hair trigger.
Hard to use mag release, even compared to other European syle releases.
the firing pin is blocked only when the safety is on.
No parts availability.
Disconnect type safety is a weak point, IMHO. The spring that reengages the trigger bar is working against a lot of leverage. Stock spring should be replaced with a stronger replacement, IMO, and gun should be kept clean and lubed. Otherwise, you might take the gun off safe and the trigger will do nothing. (As comparison, the Bersa series pistols uses the same type of disconnect safety. But there's a sturdier spring in addition to the trigger return spring, which is positioned much further back on the trigger bar in a position of much better leverage compared to the P-64. And there are still a few reports of people having failure of this mechanism on the superior Bersa.)

Other: This isn't a mak, and it's not a Walther clone. Those crazy Polz made the SA trigger starting point and takeup feel very similar to the DA trigger. If caught off guard and not paying attention to the hammer, you might not even tell the difference until the trigger breaks, unexpectedly.

PA-63 Pros:
second cheapest
is the only one with a passive firing pin drop-safety.
It's also the lightest, due to the aluminum frame.
It has a thumb mag release
Decent 7 round capacity.

Cons: It has a hard DA pull, but not bad. With a spring change, it's not much different than an American PPK, TBH.
It has the worst ergonomics, IMO.
It does not feed HP reliably, due to magazine design.
Due to the aluminum frame, I've read you should avoid ammo heavier than 95 grains.

PM Mak
Pros: considered the most reliable.
8 round capacity.

Cons: It's a bit heavier, thicker, and taller than the PA-63, but it is a little shorter in length.
No firing pin safety of any kind.
Interestingly, no firing pin spring, either. AFAIK, it can slam fire if dirty or on slightly out of spec ammo.
Some regard the vestigial sights as worse even than the PA-63.

Other: come in a variety of flavors with varying fit, finish, price, etc.

CZ-82 pros: best trigger
Best capacity
Good sights
Good ergonomics

cons: largest, heaviest
AFAIK, there's no firing pin safety on this gun, either.

Other: It's a DA/SA without a decocker. I don't know why anyone would call that a modern design. :)

WardenWolf
May 26, 2010, 06:21 PM
Actually, you're wrong there, Gloob, on 2 parts. The Makarov has a hammer block that is ALWAYS engaged when the trigger is not pulled. That's regardless of whether the safety is on or off. You cannot push the hammer forward to contact the firing pin, even with the safety off, and they passed California's drop test. These guns are very safe.

Second, the P-64's mag release becomes very easy after a hammer spring swap, as they are the same spring. The trigger pull is not bad, either. I find it perfectly reasonable with an 18-pound hammer spring.

I forgot another good contender: the Polish P-83 Wanad. These are nice looking little pistols, and get very good reviews. I can't say I've ever shot one, but they look extremely comfortable. It's almost exactly the same size as the Makarov. The height and handle length are identical, and the overall length is only 4mm longer. They're also the exact same weight. They can be had for as little as $200 from AIM now, too. I want one, but unfortunately can't afford it right now. They're very nice looking pistols, indeed much nicer looking than the Makarov itself. The grey grips really accent it.

Here's information on it: http://kalashnikov.guns.ru/foreign/hem2.passagen.se/dadkri/P-83.htm

Fastcast
May 26, 2010, 07:11 PM
CZ-82 pros: best trigger
Best capacity

cons: largest, heaviest
AFAIK, there's no firing pin safety on this gun, either.
Other: It's a DA/SA without a decocker. I don't know why anyone would call that a modern design. :)

Well no.....but it does have a hammer stop/safety that prevents the hammer from striking the firing pin when the hammer is lowered to DA.....Good enough for me!......The 82 is also a breeze to lower the hammer manually. If you just release the hammer slightly down then release the trigger, you'll hear a click, that's the hammer stop. So actually the hammer doesn't need to be lowered but a fraction, to be safe, as long as you release the trigger first.

GLOOB
May 26, 2010, 07:49 PM
Actually, you're wrong there, Gloob, on 2 parts. The Makarov has a hammer block that is ALWAYS engaged when the trigger is not pulled. That's regardless of whether the safety is on or off. You cannot push the hammer forward to contact the firing pin, even with the safety off, and they passed California's drop test. These guns are very safe.
I never said the PM Makarov didn't pass California drop testing. (I was actually aware that it had.) And I never said it didn't have a hammer block safety. !?

These guns don't have a FIRING PIN SAFETY. Meaning that like a pre series 80 Colt 1911, they might possibly be able to fire if dropped on the muzzle. This kind of AD has nothing to do with the hammer contacting the firing pin. It occurs from the inertia of the firing pin, alone. Thus, a hammer block safety will do nothing to stop this. Just because it passed ********** (pay a bureaucrat some money and he'll tell you if it's safe) drop-testing doesn't mean I'm completely ok with the firing pin flopping around in the breeze. And in the case of the PM Mak, this isn't even an exaggeration, since there's no FP spring. If you jiggle the gun back and forth, you're literally tapping the primer with the FP.

AFAIK, the FEG 9x18's are the only ones that have a passive firing pin safety, being direct copies of the Walther PP pistols, internally. There's in fact a spring loaded plunger in the side of the firing pin, itself, that pushes the firing pin out of alignment with the firing pin channel. Any forward movement is blocked. When the trigger is fully depressed, a plunger pushes up on the firing pin, and forward progress is now unimpeded.

The P-64 at least has an active FP safety. When on safe, the FP is locked (in addition to the trigger bar being pushed away from the sear, a hammer block, and a hammer "rebound"/half-cock notch.) But if carried hammer down, safety off, there is no FP safety.

So yeah, a makarov has the fewest parts. But it's missing a couple that might be considered nice to have! :)

Next time someone says "yeah, but a GLOCK has no safety," maybe you'll be able to correct him. Most all modern pistols have levels of safety that many of these older guns have omitted.

The 82 is also a breeze to lower the hammer manually. If you just release the hammer slightly down then release the trigger, you'll hear a click, that's the hammer stop. So actually the hammer doesn't need to be lowered but a fraction, to be safe, as long as you release the trigger first.
Yep. Finger off the trigger. This is the way I decock the PA-63 and P-64, even though they have a decocker. The PA-63 has the FP block. The P-64 has the hammer rebound sear notch, like the Mak and CZ-82. Even on my little .22 that is SA with a half cock notch, I decock this way. After getting the hammer down to the half-cock notch, I pull the trigger a second time. The only modern pistols where this method sux is for a DA/SA that has a half-cock notch. You can't lower them all the way unless your finger were to stay on the trigger. So on these guns (e.g. Bersa) I use the manual decocker. I suppose this would also be a challenge on an old Colt SA with 4 half-cock notches.

I cringe anytime I see someone on TV lower a hammer with their finger on the trigger; on to of that, it's usually while they have the gun still pointed at the other guy. :)

christcorp
May 26, 2010, 08:34 PM
If there's ANY test, rule, or policy that has the word "CALIFORNIA" in it, then you KNOW that it's BAD!!!

My favorite 2 are the CZ-82 and the PA-63. Comparing the PA-63 and the P64, and saying you like the P64 because it's "Smaller" and "Easier to Conceal" is like saying you're "Sort of Pregnant". The PA-63 is very easy to conceal. So what if the P64 us a pubic hair lighter or smaller. IMO, FEG did a much better job with the PA-63 walther clone design than the Polish did with the P64. But EITHER is a very good gun. And with a Wolf spring set on the PA-63, it is freaking awesome to shoot.

The CZ-82, well..... It's in a class all it's own. And that's why I even like it better than my East German Makarov. There's nothing about it that I couldn't like. It's SA or DA. You can safely lower the hammer and carry it DA with a round in the chamber. If you addicted to 1911A1, you can leave the CZ cocked and locked. You can't break the gun, and you can't make it jam. It will fire anything. It can carry 12+1 if you feel you need the extra ammo. You can still buy the gun for $220. I have Sig, Dan Wesson, S&W, Ruger, Springfield Armory, Kimber, and quite a few other "Big Name Brands", besides the FEG, Mak, CZ, Polish, etc... My CZ-82 is my Carry weapon more than 70% of the time. The other 30% was a mix of my Sig P220 in the heavy clothed winter months; and my AP-MBP (FEG 32acp), in the summer, short wearing light wearing, or Formal dress days. Now that Buffalo-Bore has the 115 grain flat nose cast for self defense, my CZ-82 will be used more even in winter months with heavy clothing. Yes, my Sig P220 is most definitely the "Better" gun, but that brings us back to do you need better. Is a car that does 180mph BETTER than a car that can only do 120mph? Not if you don't need to go past 120mph.

Any of these guns are great. That's the problem. We're trying to discuss BETTER among guns that are GREAT. It comes down to what you like. For me, CZ-82 is 1st, E. German Mak is #2. But neither carries like the PA-63 or P64. However; if I NEED that small, I prefer to carry the PA-63's twin-sister; the AP-MBP (32acp). (Easier to shoot when dealing with a really small gun.) To each their own.

ACORN
May 26, 2010, 08:56 PM
Makarovs originally were 8 round capacity, Russian, E German, Bulgarian, and Chinese. The 10 and 12 rounders were Russian mfg. for the commercial market. Never heard of an East German hi-cap. The only difference between the 10 and 12 round Maks is the magazine. The grips on the East German is the same length as the Russian, Bulgarian, and Chinese but uses a different screw. A nice thing about the hi-caps is that the 8 round mags will fit them, but it rattles a bit.

Snowdog
May 26, 2010, 09:55 PM
If you needed a CC gun with $250 cash in your hand....

Well, I can say that in the past I've carried both the Makarov (IJ-70) and CZ-82 and believe the IJ-70 was a bit easier to carry. However, I'd still choose to carry the CZ-82 over the Mak any day if forced to carry something chambered in 9x18. I don't have personal experience with the P64 though I've read a bit about it. Besides the stock trigger and limited capacity, I understand it's slim and very well made.

Bottom line for me is that if I found myself in the middle of the situation where I needed a pistol and somehow got stuck with something in 9x18 (and you wouldn't), I would absolutely want the CZ-82 on my side; the CZ-82 seems to me to be the most "combat oriented" of all the other 9x18 contenders.

christcorp
May 26, 2010, 10:00 PM
I would never feel that I got "STUCK" with a 9x18. It can hold it's own quite nicely. I don't believe the other calibers will make you "more" dead. Nor any faster.

Snowdog
May 26, 2010, 10:11 PM
Now don't get me wrong, I have plenty of respect for the 9x18. I just (rather strongly) prefer at least a 9x19 such as my K9 or UC9 (that serve as my current carry pistols) due in part to excellent defensive JHPs such as Winchester's RA9124TP when my life and the life of my family is on the line. Just a personal preference.

I've got a buddy that carries a .32 revolver he's had for ages and feels he's well armed. He shoots it with surprising precision and aims for the face/head/neck. I've never argued with him as to how I feel the .32 Long isn't up-to-snuff for defense as I'm under the impression he could drop an assailant like a bag of potatoes. Though I wouldn't doubt tens of thousands have fallen to the .32 Long since its conception, it's just not for me either (regardless how well it serves him).

There are plenty who feel the 9x18 is perfectly fine. I find it marginal but completely capable, especially in the right hands. It's just not for me in a defensive role when I have other options for CCW.

GLOOB
May 26, 2010, 10:26 PM
My favorite 2 are the CZ-82 and the PA-63. Comparing the PA-63 and the P64, and saying you like the P64 because it's "Smaller" and "Easier to Conceal" is like saying you're "Sort of Pregnant". The PA-63 is very easy to conceal. So what if the P64 us a pubic hair lighter or smaller. IMO, FEG did a much better job with the PA-63 walther clone design than the Polish did with the P64. But EITHER is a very good gun. And with a Wolf spring set on the PA-63, it is freaking awesome to shoot.
For the most part, I agree. I highly prefer the design of the FEG for 1.traditionally trigger transition, 2. no disconnect safety 3. passive FP safety. Other thoughts: I don't have a huge beef against the Euro heel release in general, but when combined with a lack of external slide stop/release as on a P-64, it would make for quite a handful to clear certain malfunctions, should the need arise.
And for the record, the PA-63 is lighter than the P-64. Mine is, at least (it lost a bit of weight on the handle hump.) Even fully loaded with mag and 7x 94 grain rounds, my PA-63 is over 20 grams lighter than a P-64 loaded with 6x 94 grain rounds.

But aside from the 20 gram weight difference, the P-64 IS generally easier and/or more comfortable to conceal.

The slide is just hair thinner. It's just a hair shorter in overall height. But its OAL is the better part of an inch shorter. And even if you discount the bump on the stock grips, the width of a PA-63 is 1.21" at the grips. The P-64 is less than 1" wide, everywhere! If you remove the grip extension from the magazine, the P-64 is definitely the most concealable of all these guns.

Cactus Jack Arizona
May 26, 2010, 11:19 PM
I have two Russians and one Bulgarian and they are equally impressive in the accuracy column. All are wonderfully fit with beautiful finish. The only one I would shy away from would be the Chinese model M59 (?). Reason? I can't give you one other than it is just a feeling. :scrutiny:

Now, you mentioned that the one you looked at was made in Hungary, right? Its probably already been mentioned to you, but Hungary didn't make a true Makarov. They made a nice looking little pistol chambered in the 9x18 Makarov round. It is called the PA-63, made by FEG. I used to own one and it was a snappy little booger with accuracy issues. :eek:

True Makarov PM's come only from Russia, East Germany, Bulgaria, and China.

Good luck in your purchase, if you haven't made it yet. If you've already made your purchase, I hope you chose the right pistol for you. :)

rkammer
May 26, 2010, 11:46 PM
I'm kind of biased towards the genuine Makarovs myself. I like the idea of owning a piece of handgun history in addition to having a great carry pistol to boot. I have an East German Makarov and it alternates with several others as my car and CC gun. I feel that the 8+1 rounds in the genuine Maks is probably enough to get me out of most self defense scenarios. :)

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v294/Raykamm/Guns/EG_Mak_2.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v294/Raykamm/Guns/EG_Mak_1.jpg

GLOOB
May 27, 2010, 01:30 AM
For the record, both my PA-63 and P-64 are tack drivers. Those with accuracy issues might have a bad example, or perhaps they are recoil sensitive with these smaller guns.

It took a few trips to get used to the tiny sights and the odd grip. And it took a few whacks with a punch and hammer to drift the sights. But eventually, the PA-63 proved itself to be one of my best shooters. Now, I've only put a few mags through the P-64, but I seem to have taken to it right away - probably because the sights and ergonomics are a bit better than the PA-63, if anything, and the SA trigger is nearly as good.

First magazine of 6 bullets out of the P-64, I wasn't really doing accuracy testing. So I shot (all SA) into a reactive target only about 20 feet away, standing. Damn me to hell if the second through 5th bullets didn't all go through the very same hole. Not holes that were touching. Not a ragged hole or a clover leaf. Just the same hole, right on the lower left edge of the 1 inch bullseye. The only way to tell there were more than 3 shots on the paper was to have been there to see it. I am guessing the first shot (higher by 1/2") was off because of the newly cleaned barrel and/or because it was the hand-racked round. The last shot (3/4 inch lower and a smidge to the right) was probably nerves. After that fifth shot, I pinched myself, to see if I would wake up. Putting the last shot through the same hole would've been like bowling a 300! :D

WardenWolf
May 27, 2010, 08:55 AM
Here's my P-64. I like it a lot. My father and I both bought one, and we're both happy.

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s279/WardenWolf_1982/th_P64Left.jpg (http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s279/WardenWolf_1982/P64Left.jpg) http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s279/WardenWolf_1982/th_P64Right.jpg (http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s279/WardenWolf_1982/P64Right.jpg)

Note that that's a genuine set of Russian Flora camo behind it. :)

Of course, having 2 guns of the same type, I just couldn't pass up the opportunity to shoot one in each hand at the range. I'm probably one of the few people who can actually pull that off safely and with any degree of accuracy because I'm fully ambidextrous with pistols. Despite alternating pretty quickly I hit the target well.

Honestly, my 2 primary choices, though, would be the real Makarov or the Polish P-83. The P-83 is a newer, more refined design than any of the other options. It's a second-generation pistol, taking the lessons learned from other 9x18 designs, and an 8+1 capacity. It has a 13-pound double action trigger pull, putting it right alongside commercial semi-autos like the Walther PPK, and a larger, more comfortable grip. Knowing this, I'd probably go with a P-83, even though the Makarov is just classy. It's probably the best of all the 9x18 guns.

I'll freely admit I'm a sucker for Commie guns. I just love their exotic designs, quality, and reliability. And some of them, like the PSL, are nothing short of beautiful. I own 3 ComBloc pistols, a Romanian Tokarev, Bulgarian Makarov, and Polish P-64. The Tokarev is a real tack driver, and loads of fun to shoot. I qualified for my concealed carry permit with it, such is my faith in it. It's way too big to conceal, though, hence the Makarov and P-64 (what a wonderful excuse to buy more guns :) ). I'm slowly converting my father to the wonderful world of Eastern Bloc firearms, as he begins to see you can frequently get what you want for much cheaper, and the quality is the same or better.

BRad704
May 27, 2010, 09:52 AM
i havent made my purchase yet, but my birthday is coming up on July 4th, and I intend on treating myself to a present of my own choosing. :) I'm honestly still totally torn on what I would do if they were all sitting in front of me for the same money. I think it will come down to what I can find locally when I do have the money.

I want to thank everyone for all the input, this has been one of the best reading and most informative threads I have participated in for quite a while.

TripleL
May 27, 2010, 03:12 PM
If you research the Mak history, it had to go though more torture testing than any other pistol ever made to be accepted as a military small arm. They are just indestructible in my opinion.

You can say that again! This is my EG after I dug it out of the rubble after my home burned down. And, the same EG after several weeks of soaking in a solution, the formula of which I found on makarov.com.

After replacing the springs and grip, I've shot over 500 rounds though it with no problem and has been my daily carry. Since it has only 27 parts, actually only 23 if you don't include the magazine, it was an easy self-fix not requiring a gunsmith. I doubt if I could have done that with a CZ-82.

http://i235.photobucket.com/albums/ee256/Threel_photo/011.jpg

http://i235.photobucket.com/albums/ee256/Threel_photo/034.jpg

WardenWolf
May 28, 2010, 07:04 PM
Not bad, TripleL. Normally, with any gun that had been in a fire, I'd be worried that the heat would have ruined the steel tempering. However, given the condition of the plastic grips, it's fairly obvious it didn't get that hot. It mostly just got soaked and buried, hence the rust and ash.

Where'd you get the replacement mainspring? Last I checked replacement Makarov mainsprings are almost impossible to find since they were made on a 1:1 ratio with the guns, and nobody makes a replacement since it's very odd.

WardenWolf
May 28, 2010, 08:18 PM
I'm talking the master spring that handles trigger, hammer, and magazine release.

MCgunner
May 28, 2010, 08:53 PM
Second, the P-64's mag release becomes very easy after a hammer spring swap, as they are the same spring. The trigger pull is not bad, either. I find it perfectly reasonable with an 18-pound hammer spring.

I think what he was saying is that once the DA pull is improved via the lighter spring, and it is greatly improved, the SA trigger becomes too light. He's right on that, the SA trigger is WAY light on this gun. It makes the DA to SA transition difficult. But, I still prefer it to all other 9x18 east block guns for carry due to the size.

I just got my Marschel grips for my P64 today, walnut, nice. :D They fill the hand better and are better shaped in the back of the gun where the palm rests, makes the gun point a little better and the web of the hand area is smoother and wider. It should be easier on the web of the hand during recoil, will see this weekend. They do feel a LOT better than the plastic it came with. :D This little gun is rough on the shooting hand. I poofawed the reports of its recoil before I got it. I mean, I shoot a Kel Tec P11 all the time, only 14 ounces and a full 9x19+P. But, the little P64 is WORSE to shoot. Amazing. It's damned accurate, though. Off the bench, it'll put a mag full into 3" to POA at 25 yards.

rd2007
May 29, 2010, 06:34 PM
Sure is a lot of P64 hating in here, but I have to wonder how many of them have actually fired one and how many read something someone else heard someone else say on the Internet.. The DA is a tad bit tight, but easy to deal with as long as you know it is coming and the SA is very smooth, or at least it is on mine. I really like mine, especially the price I paid ($169.99 @ J&G) and hopefully readers only listen to those who actually own the gun.

WardenWolf
May 29, 2010, 09:09 PM
Just got back from the range. Put 2 boxes of ammo through my Makarov and P-64. I shot a full 7-shot vertical string all touching in rapid fire at 20 feet with the P-64. It's one continuous hole. The Makarov made one big round hole slightly to the left with about 6 or 7 shots in it (I just drifted the sight to correct for that). Both pistols are extremely accurate and I would trust both with my life. I believe both guns just needed to break in a bit. They've gotten much more accurate than when I first got them. As of now, I have zero complaints.

After what I just saw today, there's no room to complain about the P-64. It's accurate, and it shoots extremely well in rapid fire. I have zero doubts I could empty the magazine into center of mass in short order in an emergency. Recoil is not bad. You feel it a little bit after shooting 30-40 rounds out of it, but it's not at all uncomfortable to shoot. It's just flat out a nice gun, and an incredible value for the money. If you want a Makarov-style handgun but want something a little smaller and cheaper than a Makarov, by all means get one. You won't regret it.

MCgunner
May 29, 2010, 10:00 PM
My P64. Just got the Marschel grips....

http://i50.tinypic.com/2w1saxs.jpg

MCgunner
May 29, 2010, 10:17 PM
Just wait until you try a true Soviet Makarov PM. which I feel is the best pistol ever designed in history. You will see why they are still being used when the venerable 1911 no longer is. Makarov got it right in the 50's!.....

Sounds like a Makarov "fan boy".....:neener:

Full Metal Jacket
May 29, 2010, 10:20 PM
I doubt if I could have done that with a CZ-82.


you can't fix or clean a CZ82? :eek:

Snowdog
May 30, 2010, 06:24 AM
Just wait until you try a true Soviet Makarov PM. which I feel is the best pistol ever designed in history. You will see why they are still being used when the venerable 1911 no longer is. Makarov got it right in the 50's!......

I can only guess you're trying to ruffle some feathers in saying that. Any country still using the Makarov is quite likely doing so due to financial constraints as opposed to the Makarov being "full of win and awesome".

I would go further by saying that I'm convinced any country still using the Makarov would readily convert to a more modern, high capacity 9x19 if financially feasible (IE the ability to provide support for the new firearm).

Heck, even Russia is using something different these days and in 9x19 to boot (Yarygin PYa). For the life of me I can't imagine why. ;)

I like the Mak and am well aware it can be perfectly effective in the right hands but would stop short of saying it's the cat's meow.

rbernie
May 30, 2010, 11:44 AM
Please keep it on topic, or the thread will get locked. If your post got deleted - take this as a warning that your contributions have been noted as unhelpful.

Fastcast
May 30, 2010, 12:23 PM
Uh, Oh.....I must of missed the excitement! :banghead: :)

Really gentlemen, some things are worth arguing about. These Mak caliber pistols aren't one of them. They're all fantastic bargains and not too shabby of shooters, to say the least! :D


They all have a reason to be the best:


Mak...Least parts, easy to strip, the real deal.

CZ-82....Most all the modern features, ambidextrous, hi-cap, real sites, amazing accuracy & ergonomics.

P-64....Smallest Mak caliber, slim, accurate, a dandy CCW.

PA-63.....Closest clone to the PPK, FP safety. lightweight aluminum frame.

North Bender
May 30, 2010, 01:58 PM
All good points Fastcast. I'll add that the FEG SMC 918 is the smallest pistol in 9x18. Here's ... OOPs!!: This is actually the P-64.

http://i116.photobucket.com/albums/o14/nbender_photos/P64resized.jpg

Litlman
May 30, 2010, 04:00 PM
That SMC in 9x18 looks nice. I just found one in 380 and have a line on one in 9x18. Nice grips too.

North Bender
May 30, 2010, 05:01 PM
Hah!

Doc you are so right. I posted the photo of my P-64.

Here's the FEG:

http://i116.photobucket.com/albums/o14/nbender_photos/FEGSMC918-1.jpg

WardenWolf
May 30, 2010, 06:04 PM
One nice thing is pretty much all these 9x18 pistols field strip in the exact same way, so you get the same manual of arms for all of them. Pull the trigger guard down, pull the slide to the rear, and take it off. That's that. Nice and easy, nice and quick. Once you've field stripped one, you've field stripped them all.

rd2007
May 30, 2010, 06:24 PM
Those last two pictures look nearly brand new! Did they come that way or were they restored? I thought my P64 was in pretty good condition, but that one from North Bender definitely puts mine to shame.
Completely agree with the ease of field stripping as well. I think I could strip 1000 P64s in the amount of time it takes me to do my 1911. I have only took the 1911 apart twice so far, though, so I'm definitely a n00b with it.

Snowdog
May 30, 2010, 07:29 PM
Here is my latest unissued addition and my 47 year old Russian with custom grips

Isn't that Mak with the (rather nice) custom grips Bulgarian?

North Bender
May 30, 2010, 08:33 PM
The Mak with red grips has Russian markings. Doc, please check and report if the barrel is chrome lined and if you can load 8 rounds into the magazine. Most maks I saw on the street in Afghanistan were made at the Khyber Pass in pakistan. The barrels were not lined and the magazine springs were so weak they would bend out and not allow many more than 5 or 6 rounds to be loaded.

The Pakistanis could get a real nice blued finish on these pistols.

North Bender
May 30, 2010, 08:46 PM
Yes, I do know Russian markings. And so do the Pakistanis and they are completely able to replicate them to every detail.

But I'm a bit confused - you say your son sent you an un-issued Bulgarian, and the pistol with custom grips is Russian. That picture is too dark for me to tell the country of orgin, but the other is Russian, not Bulgarian.

Snowdog
May 30, 2010, 10:40 PM
How do you come to that conclusion?

Probably because it says Arsenal on the side. LOL

Arsenal marked Bulgarian Maks are marked:

mod. MAKAROV cal. 9x18 ARSENAL (made in Bulgaria written beneath ARSENAL)

Snowdog
May 30, 2010, 11:01 PM
This one of course, the "47 year old Russian with custom grips". Save to disk and zoom.

http://thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=122100&d=1275259772


Perhaps you meant the custom grips were on a Bulgarian, who knows.

Arsenal Maks

http://makarov.com/graphics/makawrap/makwrap3.jpg

http://usera.imagecave.com/denfoote/NewGrips1.jpg

Snowdog
May 30, 2010, 11:40 PM
They were handed to me in a manila envelope at the dead of night by some mystery man.

Does it matter?

North Bender
May 30, 2010, 11:57 PM
Doc Glock, the photo of the killer Makarov from Viet Nam is a bit odd given Snowdog's enhancement. Can you send us a better pic?

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 12:07 AM
Oh ... finger grooves?

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 12:12 AM
We're looking for an enhancement of your PM. Because given Snowdog's work your pistol looks like a more recent commercial variety of a Makarov export.

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 12:13 AM
Grips are easily changed. Means nothing. Snowdog's pictures illustrated a pistol that is a recent variety that looks identical to yours..

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 12:21 AM
Ok, from an interesting story to busted in 0.6 seconds.

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 12:26 AM
This May help others to view this "Viet Nam bringback".

http://i116.photobucket.com/albums/o14/nbender_photos/makarov_marschal_right_sm.jpg

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 12:38 AM
Doc, that last post doesn't make sense. How did "roll marks" on this "Afghanistan Bulgarian" pistol now come into play? BTW, the only pistols I saw in AFG, real or Khyber Pass, were Russian.

I spent 2 tours in VN and 2 in Afghanistan. I may be overly sensitive to false stories. Somebody else chime in, this stuff is getting to me.

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 12:48 AM
He didn't change your gun - he showed a photo of a Bulgarian Arsenal gun that has identical markings to the one you claim you brought back. But Bulgarian Arsenals were made in the 90s. Why do you keep saying he showed your gun??

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 12:53 AM
U.S. Army VN; US Army Corps of Engineers AFG.

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 12:58 AM
Sheesh Doc, you started out sort of reasonable. The slide on the Arsenal matches the picture you posted. You did not post a VN bringback.

AFG is bigger than you know. And there's even room for the 60 year olds. You can actually get involved in the effort instead of posting about your amazing war stories.

http://i116.photobucket.com/albums/o14/nbender_photos/12108k.jpg

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 01:18 AM
Agreed, the picture could have been anyone anytime. This is the internet.

Doc, if you want to question my service, my MOS, my time in AFG, and continue about your "killer VN Bringback" it will be offline.

You can figure out how to PM me?

MICHAEL T
May 31, 2010, 01:30 AM
Ok Doc. On 24th of May. Your son was according to you in Afgan and people were using Makarov's . I can buy that.
Then on the 28th you posted he was in Iraq and they (military) was issuing Glocks
Then on the 30th he sent you a Russian Makarov from Afgan. I question the legality of that But that aside. Your son sure gets around.
When some body questions what you say. You get very defensive . Then call them liars when they post a picture to back what they said . Why is that . Just asking very nicely

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 02:12 AM
Seemed like a reasonable post from Michael T, who has made it through close to 4,000 posts on this forum. Was your son actually travelling back and forth so frequently? Must be a real important guy. On the 28th in Iraq, and then he sent the "Russian Makarov" on the 30th? I know the rigor of getting in country and the temporary housing etc. when you arrive - it was amazing that he could find a contact so soon to buy the pistol and then ship it illegally to you.

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 02:30 AM
Ft Lewis: Only in Basic Training a long time ago.

I learned in AFG that rank has no privlidges. LTCs and below bunk in the temporary quarters at Bagram AFB along with the enlisted.

I am not feeling very warm and fuzzy about anything you have posted Doc.

North Bender
May 31, 2010, 02:47 AM
Do you know anything at all about Makarovs? Of course not all Bulgarian models have the Arsenal roll mark! Man what a learned discussion this is. Arsenals are few and far between. How about your son travelling with the speed of light? Any more news on that?

rbernie
May 31, 2010, 09:55 AM
Stop with the personal attacks. If anyone has issues with posting content - please just report the post.

Art Eatman
May 31, 2010, 10:01 AM
If I didn't have better things to do, I'd waste my time doing a cleanup on aisles six and seven, deleting "Noise".

Y'all try acting like grownups. THR ain't a danged day-care center.

Wishoot
May 31, 2010, 04:52 PM
Well, just to get this thread back on track....


I'm taking possession of my CZ82 tomorrow (Wisconsin 48 hour waiting period for handguns). I had a chance to look it over when it arrived at my FFL and it was absolutely stunning. It looks almost brand spankin' new.

Thank you to the good folks at AIM Surplus for picking out a winner.

I'll post pictures as soon as I can.

rd2007
May 31, 2010, 04:55 PM
Just took a (partial) family photo and included my P64 in it. Kinda wish the focus wasn't so clear sometimes..

http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/8740/img2756smaller.jpg (http://img525.imageshack.us/i/img2756smaller.jpg/)

Uploaded with ImageShack.us (http://imageshack.us)

Palehorseman
May 31, 2010, 05:53 PM
Wife has two of the all steel Model 85 Bersa 13 rd hicap.380s and she loves them. She was turned off by the Mak.

WardenWolf
May 31, 2010, 09:36 PM
What specifically did she not like about the Mak, Palehorseman?

Marshall
June 1, 2010, 12:12 AM
In 2006 I bought an 1962 East German I absolutely loved.

The workmanship was top notch. I recommend them. Wish I still had it. :(

http://i29.photobucket.com/albums/c274/bunnfuzz/dcp_0969.jpg

Fastcast
June 1, 2010, 10:59 AM
Hey Marshall, that's a hell of a nice looking piece! :)

I do bet you'd like to have that one back!

BRad704
June 1, 2010, 01:35 PM
I just went back to the shop that started me thinking enough to create this thread, and they have TWO PA-63's for $225 each. I got to finally check it out first hand after knowing a little more about them, and I really really like that gun! I remember someone talking about how the PA-63 was too "wide", but after seeing people carry small XD's and Jframes, how could the PA be too wide!?!?! I think its perfect!

and since Murphy is a %&#$%!!! the radio in my wifes G35 went out last week and is sucking up our fun-money... %$&# - ^$E$%#

WardenWolf
June 1, 2010, 08:19 PM
I received a little treat today in the mail, in the form of my Marschal grips for my Makarov. They're walnut grips with a red shellac finish.

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s279/WardenWolf_1982/MakGrips.jpg

North Bender
June 1, 2010, 09:58 PM
If I didn't have better things to do, I'd waste my time doing a cleanup on aisles six and seven, deleting "Noise".

Y'all try acting like grownups. THR ain't a danged day-care center.

I should not have taken complete absurdeties personally. I do apologize to the forum. The High Road is a class act and I enjoy posts on many boards here.

BRad704
June 3, 2010, 08:55 AM
Ok... now i know I have read TOO much about these guns.... I actually DREAMED about one last night!!!!!! ACtually, I dreamed that I was in a shootout and that mine was 16+1 and I put almost all 10 that I shot in COM... and checked the mag after and sure enough, still had 6 to go! Wouldnt THAT be sweet!

Ok, not sweet about the shootout, but I only got hit in the right knee and grazed over my left ear... CrAzY DrEaM.........................................

wojownik
June 3, 2010, 04:27 PM
Well, this thread gets odder and odder... Somewhat back on track, maybe some folks out there can help push me one way or another on buying another 9x18 (another Bulgie Mak or Polish Wanad P-83).

My current collection includes:

Soviet Mak PM (1976)
Russian Izh commercial
EG Mak
Bulgarian Mak
Polish P-64 Czak
Polish P-83 Wanad
Czech CZ-82

I'm torn on this - I have a growing Polish pistol collection (ViZ and TT as well), and a growing Mak collection.

If you could chose one or the other, which one would you choose and why?

(I picked up a bunch of magazines for both the PM and Wanad, so that's not a tie breaker anymore...)

WardenWolf
June 3, 2010, 04:34 PM
I'd choose another P-83. You've already got 3 Maks. No reason not to have another gun that's the exact same physical size but a little different and has some better features.

GLOOB
June 3, 2010, 08:47 PM
Wojownik,

You should be telling us!

Which one do you shoot better?

Which is more ergonomic?

Which one is more comfortable/easier to conceal?

Which magazine has the better design?

I'm also interested in the inner workings of the P-83. Does it have the same disconnect safety as the P-64? Does the SA trigger also have the long travel and takeup of the P-64?

Curious minds want to know!
:)

wojownik
June 3, 2010, 08:59 PM
Which one do you shoot better? - the Makarovs and the Wanad are pretty much a dead heat for accuracy.

Which is more ergonomic? - The Wanad wins here, at least for me. More comfortable grip, more forgiving recoil than the Mak (and much more than the p-64).

Which one is more comfortable/easier to conceal? Again, a dead heat, since the pistols have similar profiles. The Wanad has slightly larger/square rear sights than the Russian or Bulgie Mak, but that really shouldn't be perceptible for CC.

Which magazine has the better design? I think the Wanad has a somewhat better mag release - easier button to release, with a robust ejection of the mag.

I'm also interested in the inner workings of the P-83. Does it have the same disconnect safety as the P-64? Does the SA trigger also have the long travel and takeup of the P-64?

Need to take a second look at the disconnect safeties, but I can tell you that the SA trigger on the Wanad is very nice, not even remotely like the p-64. A bit gritty though - grittier than any of my Maks.

Al LaVodka
June 3, 2010, 09:14 PM
Copies of better guns which were worth it to civilians when they were about $100. Not really before for the military and not since...
Al

Wishoot
June 3, 2010, 09:30 PM
Well, I finally had a chance to take my new CZ82 to the range today. Let's just say it was an absolute blast to shoot.

I put 100 rounds of that cheap Brown Bear stuff 15 yards downrange and my targets were ragged holes. The recoil was marginal even with the original spring and there were no problems whatsoever.

I've already ordered a bunch of additional ammo for this gun. Frankly, this gun may be a frequent companion to the shooting range.

winchester '97
June 3, 2010, 10:49 PM
The military russians are so-so, but the commercial IJ-70 from baikal with adjustable sights is a whole different animal, mine was 125 bucks, outshoots my friends ruger 9mm all the time, absolutely reliable, and your not taking the risk of a gun with fixed sights.
The CZ-82 is great as well, same round and size with a double stack 12 round magazine. For concealed carry a lot of people like the tiny 6 shot polish Radom makarovs with an aftermarket spring to take the trigger down from its unbearable DA pull, the thing is the size of a LCP and about 80 bucks less usually.

WardenWolf
June 3, 2010, 10:53 PM
The P-64 is NOT a Makarov. It's a Makarov-style pistol, and shoots the same round, but it's not a Makarov. That said, it's very good, very reliable, and extremely accurate. Once you swap the recoil spring and the hammer spring, it's actually quite fun to shoot. I own and carry both a Bulgarian Makarov and a P-64. Both are equally accurate, and great guns. They field strip the same, so you have 1 manual of arms for both guns. Beyond basic field stripping, though, the resemblance ends. I'd trust my life to either.

Marshall
June 4, 2010, 12:14 AM
Hey Marshall, that's a hell of a nice looking piece!

I do bet you'd like to have that one back!

Thank you. And yes, it wasn't my most stellar moment.

GLOOB
June 4, 2010, 01:02 AM
I have and like the P-64, too. And I'd trust my life to MY P-64, right now. But I would trust a Pistolet Makarov to stay in trustworthy condition under harder use and harsher conditions while needed less frequent cleaning, lubrication, and repair.

The P-64 trigger bar and disconnector are both pushed up by a very small, very thin gauge spring from a very disadvantageous position. This spring is ALSO the trigger return spring, as if it didn't have enough to do already. The result: the trigger reset is a tad sluggish and a bit crunchy. And it's effectively a small miracle that the thing ever fires, at all. It looks like a Rube Goldberg machine inside. If you play around with it, you will see that you can practically prevent the gun from functioning just by breathing on the trigger bar at the right spot. And there's plenty of area there, at the top of the right grip panel, for lint and dust to collect around the trigger bar. If the trigger bar is impeded by a lint ball, or if enough powder residue clogs up the disconnector, you may pull the trigger and nothing will happen.

Other than this, and the weird trigger action, the gun is an absolute gem. The fit and finish are beautiful, the gun is comfortable to hold and shoot, the controls are smooth and ergonomic, and the thing is stunningly accurate. And the good thing about that little spring is that it's a simple coil. It's a trivial matter to wind a stronger replacement spring from thicker wire, as needed.

The first thing my sister said when she saw this 40-yr-old pistol was "ooooh, it's shiny!" The plumb brown color exactly matches my leather sofa. And the top of the slide is checkered so nicely that you can literally file your fingernails with it.

rainmakerarms
July 28, 2010, 12:54 AM
To Full Metal Jacket, a Makarov will shoot 120 gr. hollow points flawlessly(over 1000 rounds) , a CZ jams or fails to feed with 120 gr. hp. The 120 gr. hp hit with over 250 ft. lbs the 94 gr. with just over 200 ft. lbs. My Russian Mak's trigger pull DA is 13 lbs. and SA 5 lbs. with no creep. If I ever need more than the 8 rounds to stop an assailant there is a bigger problem than 13 rounds can handle as well. As the slimmer Mak is easier to conceal than the CZ I would much rather have my "Pinto" that starts every time than a "Mercedes" that gets towed to the shop every other day.

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