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Self-loading Pistol

PM

 

Caliber 9 x 18 mm
Dimensions and weight 
Total weight (with loaded magazine)  810 g
Total weight (with empty magazine) 730 g
Overall length   161 mm 
Barrels length  93 mm 
Fire characteristics
Bullets initial speed 315 m/s
Muzzle energy 300 joules
Practical rate of fire 30 rpm
Magazine capacity  8 rounds
Range of effective fire 50 m
   Self-loading pistol PM entered service as personal command staff's weapon in 1951. It was created by Soviet constructor Nikolay Makarov. Since 1951 this pistol was used in Soviet Army and Soviet Militia, and other Warsaw Pact countries Armed Forces. PM recommended oneself as fully reliable weapon.

   Firstly PM was intended to change Tokarev's self -loading pistol TT, however it wasn't able to push-out from armed forces more powerful TT. PM is middle class pistol but doesn't attempts to powerful class TT does. Comparing with TT it has smaller dimensions and weight and surpasses it in maneuverability and reliability cause has easier automatics. PM has lower muzzle energy however 9-mm instead of 7.62-mm allowed to have good bullet's stopping ability.

   First PM series was produced in Izevsk city in 1949 and from 1952 began it's serial production. Nikolay Makarov had also created 9 x 18 mm rounded bullet for it's construction self-loading pistol. This bullet became basic pistol and submachine gun bullet in Soviet Union and other Warsaw Pact countries. However this round passed to 9 x 19 mm Para in muzzle energy and also in piercing ability. To compensate somehow this disadvantage there was created new round with increased muzzle energy for modernized pistol PMM.  

   PM is fully reliable pistol. It works after immersing in mud or even under water. Chromed barrels channel a bit decreased fire accuracy but allowed to use pistol at extremely low temperatures and increased it's service life. PM is easy to maintain what was very important for armed forces. It can be fully dismantled with one screwdriver without special equipment.

   Pistols mechanism works on free lock's recoil mechanism. It's mechanism allows to execute only single fire. 

   Safety lock is placed from left side. It locks trigger and lock with it's frame at once. Round can be quiet safety carried in barrels channel preparedfor shot. However in Soviet Union, now Russia and other post communistic and some other countries opposite to western countries, it isn't allowed to carry weapon with round in the barrels channel cause of weapons unsafety. Furthermore Colt M1911 was developed with ability to carry it prepared for shot. PM's safety lock can be turned on or off  with right hand's big finger what allows to use it with one hand.

   Magazine is intended for 8 rounds. To lower it's weight and allow to control ammunition left it has frame construction with two wide observation windows. PM can use ordinary or tracer bullets. Cartridge-case extraction window is placed from the right side.

   However Makarov's pistol has some disadvantages. Firstly it is smaller fire accuracy comparing with modern western pistols. In public press there could be found opinions that it's stopping effect is not enough of rounded bullet and enemy defeated by PM is still able to resist and sharp-nose bullets proof enemy without ability to resist. These statements are false and usually are published by persons who haven't ever seen or touched this pistol. In reality everything is conversely. PM bullet doesn't have  deep enough proofing ability but of it's rounded nose it use to break bones in quiet big square. This factor was very actual for Soviet Militia cause escaping criminal hit by PM's bullet couldn't run further.

   Pistol has opened sight aimed for 25 m distance. Effective sighted fire from PM reaches 50 m range.

   PM from other pistols differed in well built and considered construction. This factor determined that PM has stayed in powerful country's armament for 50 years and haven't lost it's, as weapons, value. From 1994 in Izhevsk is serially produced modernized version PMM (Makarov's Pistol Modernized). It has increased till 12 shot's magazine capacity cause 8 shots are obviously not enough for army pistol. Nowadays there is tendency to develop pistols with 15 - 20 rounds magazine capacity. There are some other Russian modifications intended for Private Security Services, personal use or bank Security and export modifications.

PM or it's modifications are  produced by Russia, China, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Czech Republic. Nowadays it is morally but not technically dated and stays widely used. 


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