Polish P83 or Makarov?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by corton93, Sep 5, 2015.

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  1. corton93

    corton93 Member

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    So I've been playing with the idea of picking up a 9x18 mak pistol for a while. It's not going to be used for anything serious (ccw, hd) I just want one lol. But I still want it to be a good gun. So should I get a Polish P83 or a Makarov??

    Now I know everyone's going to say get a CZ 82, and I would prefer to, but they never come up for sale in my area. There are some nice Mak's for sale on Armslist, and J&G sales has p83's in stock now for $220. Im not buying it as a collector piece and don't really care about it gaining or losing value, I just want it to be solid and reliable. So which should I go with??
     
  2. Pilot

    Pilot Member

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    I have four Makarovs (Russian, East German, and two Bulgarian), and I have two P-83's I bought from Wideners for $200 each shipped. I bought the Maks in the early to mid 90's when they were coming in numbers and were inexpensive. Today they command a premium, as they are no longer made nor imported any longer, at least not many.

    I CC a P-83, and sometimes a Bulgie Mak, but I prefer the P-83 for that role. It seems to carry a little better for me, but I don't know why. If you can get a Bulgie Mak for around the same price or a bit more than the P-83 do that as they will probably appreciate, but for the money the P-83 is hard to beat, and every bit as good a gun as the Makarov, and I am a huge Mak fan. The P-83 is accurate, reliable, and built the old world way.
     
  3. Deaf Smith

    Deaf Smith Member

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    Saw a Bulgie Mak for $299 at a pawn shop. If it had been for $199 I'd have got it. Got lots of 9x18 and reloading dies as well as hundreds of XTP 9mm Mak JHPs (and a EG MAKAROV.)

    It really is a good gun. Way better than these polymer wonders they sell now days.

    Deaf
     
  4. BSA1

    BSA1 member

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    Save for the same cartridge you are comparing two firearms best used for different reasons.

    The P-83 is neither fish or fowl for American shooters. It is a bit on the large size for conceal carry and too small for duty use by LEO's. The novel action allows the gun to be carried with the hammer down in double action mode or cocked and locked like the 1911. 12 rounds of ammunition makes for heavier balanced gun. It is a lot of fun to shoot on the range.

    The Makarov is a well proven reliable design that is suitable for conceal carry.

    Of the two the P-83 is more comfortable to shoot although some will object to it's fatter grip.
     
  5. bdrift10

    bdrift10 Member

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    I would get a PM Mak, Commercial Mak, or P64 prior to purchasing the P-83.
     
  6. MedWheeler

    MedWheeler Member

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    This is about what they're up to these days. I bought mine at a gun show for $275 OTD last year, during the last 30 minutes of the last day of the show. It was marked $299.

    Since then, I've seen them running about that ($300) on GunBroker, Armslist, etc..

    Mine's in near-excellent condition, dated from 1979. If I found another in similar shape for $199, I'd have two of them.
     
  7. Dain Bramage

    Dain Bramage Member

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    BSA1: I think you're describing a CZ 83 instead of the Polish P-83 Wanad.
     
  8. Monac

    Monac Member

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    I agree with Dain Bramage about what BSA1 is saying. The safety/trigger arrangement on the P-83 is the same as on the Makarov.

    I have both a P-83 and a Makarov. The P-83 is bit bulkier and clunkier, but I think it has a better DA trigger, better sights, and the magazine is easier to load. But the Makarov is more elegant and possibly more fun to shoot, because the grip is a bit better shaped (to my hand, at least).
    Also, the sights on my P-83 may be different because I have the "commercial" version. So anyway, that's my fairly worthless two cents. :)

    BTW, is there such a thing as a Makarov magazine loading tool? Getting the 8th round in is a real struggle for me.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2015
  9. gripper

    gripper Member

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    Get one of each. I have a pair of Makarovs ( Bulgarian Circle 10, and an EG), as well as a P64. All three are GTG( especially after appropriate spring replacement), and the P83 strikes me as well made( albeit, more stamped parts). For $450-600 you could get two.
     
  10. BSA1

    BSA1 member

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    Ah! So I am. That you for correcting me. When the O.P. said range gun use and 83 I thought of the CZ.

    To the O.P. beware of buying a semi-auto that only comes with one magazine.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2015
  11. Partizanai

    Partizanai Member

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    They are both excellent choices....

    While they are both excellent choices, the MAK would still be my
    person first choice. The East German model is the absolute best- by
    any metric. The Russian IJ70 or the Bulgarian are also very safe picks.
    I do like the Radom's but, not quite as much.
    The 9 X 18 round is a most under rated "CC" option. Many American's
    are still "clueless" about it and the 7.62 X 25 TOK round. What a shame
    as they are both excellent choices.......
     
  12. corton93

    corton93 Member

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    Just an update. I ended up getting the P-83 from J&G. Should be at my ffl by tues-wed. So one more question. I know hornady makes the crit defense and custom in 9x18 but with it being an already underpowered round id like to have something +p if I did decide to carry it.

    This leaves Buffalo Bore and Underwood. Im good with either but my real question, what is the P-83 rated at for chamber pressure? I know people carry +p in their Maks and it runs just fine. Im pretty sure it will run it just fine, but was just curious from a numbers-on-paper standpoint if it is "safe"?? :D
     
  13. gripper

    gripper Member

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    I don't know for certain regarding the P83, but the Maks and the P64 get the heavier recoil springs from Wolff Gunsprings-.. Never a bad idea in a blowback gun.
     
  14. Pilot

    Pilot Member

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    I carry my P-83 often, and have the Hornady Critical Duty loaded in it. I feel well armed.
     
  15. jrdolall

    jrdolall Member

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    I have five in 9x18 and the Russian is my favorite followed by the Polish and the Hungarian is the the worst of the lot. The Hungarian was CHEAP at a pawn shop.

    For practice and plinking I use whatever I found online. Seems like I have a bunch of PPU that I have been shooting lately but I am not choisy on range ammo since all the guns fire it all just fine. For carry I use a Hornady Custom 95 grain XTP. I picked up 10 boxes at a store that was closing about a year ago and am down to my last 30 rounds or so.
     
  16. Nattleby

    Nattleby Member

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    I have been carrying my Polish P64 for over a year now. Its 100% reliable, easy to conceal, fires the Critical Duty Ammo with no problems, and it's lighter than the other 9x18 pistols. The only reason the Pols replaced the P64 with the P83 is because the P64 was too expensive to produce.

    I also just got an unissued Bulgarian Mak over the weekend.
     
  17. Gun Master

    Gun Master Member

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    Hungarian = FEG PA-63 ?
     
  18. joem1945

    joem1945 Member

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    I wouldn't call the 9X18 under powered at least judgng from the recoil. I have the P64 and also reload for it. I bought some HP's for it to try out. That thing shoots.
     
  19. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    Just bought a second nice EG Mak, to add to the other EG, the Bulgy and commercial Russian.
    My Polish P-83 Wanads have (in my opinion) better DA pulls than my best EG Makarov. The P-83s allow a more consistent pressure with DA. I've not tried to carry a P-83, but they seem to lack only the nice bluing and shine of many Maks.

    There can be at least one benefit to having a commercial Russian in .380 Auto (we know about the rear sights...don't drop).

    This is the primary reason I bought my single-stack .380 as an "Alternative Mak": most 9x18 Mak ammo seems to be imported from Russia, and could one day be vulnerable to high import tariffs/bans on Russian ammo.
    Wouldn't Anti-2nd Amendment politicians and US ammo manufacturers lobby for this, along with politicians who want to reduce trade with Russia?
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2015
  20. BSA1

    BSA1 member

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    I would rest easy my friend. Supplies of 9x18 isn't going to dry up anytime soon.

    Red Army is made in Ukraine and Romania.

    Barnaul is made in Russia and imported from New Zealand.

    Wolf Polyformance and Military Classic is made in Tula, Russia.

    Wolf Gold is made in Taiwan.

    Prvi Partizan is headquartered in Serbia.

    75% of Fiocchi centerfire pistol ammunition is made in Missouri, USA

    And of course Hornady is 100% USA made.
     
  21. FIVETWOSEVEN

    FIVETWOSEVEN Member

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    I got my Russian .380 Makarov two years ago for $195 and it's one of the best guns I've ever bought. I say with confidence that it's the most reliable semi auto handgun ever made. It's too bad they didn't make a 9x19 Makarov.
     
  22. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    BSA1:
    Thanks very much for the detailed 9x18 briefing :). At least future bad relations with Russia would probably not have the potential to increase the price much.

    You are the first person who appears to understand the variety of sources and/or wants to explain the situation.
    Nobody at "Makarov.com" or "Surplusrifle" seems to understand how wide the import selection is. Won't be as hesitant now to use the EG, Bulgy, Polish P-83s and CZ-82 etc as often as the Russian.

    The only real operational problems have been with Tula .380 or 9x18 (in a very nice CZ-82)...but no more. Academy can sell it to other people.
     
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2015
  23. BSA1

    BSA1 member

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    I.O.,

    You're welcome my friend. It is a bit surprising to me about how mainstream the 9x18 has become in the United States.

    Wishing you and yours a very Merry Christmas.
     
  24. nathan

    nathan Member

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    Bulgie makarovs are plentiful. Get them before they are gone.
     
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