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  1. #1
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    Default 9mm Makarov to .380 barrel

    One of the milsurp vendors is advertising used, excellent condition .380 cal Makarov barrels to convert the 9mm Makarovs from 9x18mm Makarov to .380 cal ACP.
    (Cheaper ammo, more variety.) There is a note that some minor fitting may be required. They are selling for $50 plus shipping.

    Do you suppose this is something worth trying?
    "When Stalin says dance, a wise man dances."
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    I am looking for a pre-war or war-time M38 stock

  2. #2
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    The .380ACP bullet dia is .356" and the 9mm Makarov bullet dia is .364", so I don't think this is such a good idea
    I Swear On My Life, And My Love Of It, That I Will Never Live For The Sake Of Another Man, Nor Ask Another Man To Live For Mine. - John Galt

  3. #3
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    Not much price difference, usually, between 9x18 mak and 380. And the mak round is hotter.
    I swear by Jupiter Optimus Maximus .... in the army of the consul Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus and for 10 miles around it I will not steal anything worth more than a sestertius in any one day.

  4. #4
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    MP517PRCT, you change out the entire barrel so the new barrel will have the correct chamber and bore diameter. It sounds like you are thinking of just shooting the .380 in a 9x18 barrel. Even though you can change the barrels, it is no easy task. Check out this link for additional information.

    http://www.makarov.com/barrlrep.html
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  5. #5
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    No. It's heresy. The Makarov is one of the final forms of a long project which was centered around the 'ulimate' blowback cartridge -- and pistol to fire it.

    If you want a .380, get one of the pistols that shoot it.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jjk308 View Post
    Not much price difference, usually, between 9x18 mak and 380. And the mak round is hotter.
    I always thought the 9x18 round was pretty wimpy. I havn't made a direct comparison to my Kel-Tec P3AT though. SO you're saying it's more powerful than the .380APC? It's nowhere near the standard 9mm round though, right? I don't own one. Just briefly looked at a few rounds from my friend's Mak, so that's why my thinking may be faulty.

  7. #7
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    The 9mm Makarov(9x18) is considered to be the most powerful round that a blowback action can handle (eta: In practical terms, for a sidearm). It's power, generally speaking, is between the .380(9mm 'short') and 9x19.

    The .380 conversion barrel for the Makarov recently gained notoriety when the FBI 'pulled in' hundreds of these pistols for ballistic testing for the investigation of a murder. The case ( where an assistant US attorney was murdered at his home in Seattle) was never solved.
    Last edited by crowcreek; 06-19-2009 at 08:18 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by crowcreek View Post
    The 9mm Makarov(9x18) is considered to be the most powerful round that a blowback action can handle (eta: In practial terms, for a sidearm). It's power, generally speaking, is between the .380(9mm 'short') and 9x19.

    The .380 conversion barrel for the Makarov recently gained notoriety when the FBI 'pulled in' hundreds of these pistols for ballistic testing for the investigation of a murder. The case ( where an assistant US attorney was murdered at his home in Seattle) was never solved.
    Thanks for the clarification.

  9. #9
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    Well first off, there are a few 9x19 blowbacks, Hi-point even has .40 and .45 acp blowback pistols. So I don't know if saying 9x18 Mak is THE most powerful cartridge you can design a blowback pistol around is entirely correct.

    In some cases 9x18 Mak will edge-out .380acp, in other cases .380 actually wins out. Most of the time, they're right about even. My two carry rounds in .380acp (Federal Hydra-shok and Spanish Santa Barbara) will hold their own against the currently available 9x18 "Bear" ammo and Wolf MC.

    If you want a .380, get one of the pistols that shoot it.
    Like an Arsenal Makarov! One of the best .380 autos out there, IMO. :D

    But, would I bother to rebarrel a 9x18 to .380 at this time? Probably not.

  10. #10
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    I know; I said: "In practical terms". Blowback actions chambered for ctgs that powerful are a minority. I have a .351 Winchester rifle that is a blowback action. The breechbolt assly. weighs about five or six pounds, I think, and the spring behind it is a sonofab!tch. The disassembly instructions say: "Do not disassemble the rifle beyond this point." [ I did -- and spent several hours wishing I hadn't! ]

    I didn't want to mention the highpoint -- I'm not familiar with it, so I don't really know if it's a 'straight blowback' or some form of 'delayed unlocker'.

    I would not be surprised if some .380 ammo outperforms certain 9x18 loads. They are all in the same class in my book, I'd feel as comfortable with a .32acp. [eta: I have read (somewhere) that records indicate the same stopping power for .32 and .380, in actual self-defense shootings. Bottom line: shoot at least twice.]

    My comments were meant to address the '.380 conversion'; a project of dubious merit, at best.
    Last edited by crowcreek; 06-19-2009 at 08:09 PM.

  11. #11
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    There are also .380acp pistols with 'locking actions'. This is just 'spillover' at the dividing line.

    My point is that the 9x18 Makarov is the end product of a long design effort to build the best compact blowback pistol for combat carry. It was started by the Germans early in WWII, when they needed a pistol for Luftwaffe pilots.

    The whole story is in the '99 "Gun Digest": 'Germany's ULTRA Pistols' by Gene Gangarosa, Jr.

  12. #12
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    Here's a little photo of the Gun Digest article I mentioned, in case anyone is having a slow Friday nite.

    http://i41.tinypic.com/2621d7d.jpg

  13. #13
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    Compairing a .380 with hot ammo against 9X18 mild surplus ammo is like putting a V8 in a Ford Pinto and saying my car is faster! If you are to make a true head to head, do it with the same ammo. 9X18 is a step up period.


    PS: Have you tried to get some .380 lately?? Much easier to get 9X18 here in Seattle.
    Last edited by tooltown; 06-20-2009 at 02:30 AM.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by tooltown View Post
    Compairing a .380 with hot ammo against 9X18 mild surplus ammo is like putting a V8 in a Ford Pinto and saying my car is faster! If you are to make a true head to head, do it with the same ammo. 9X18 is a step up period.


    PS: Have you tried to get some .380 lately?? Much easier to get 9X18 here in Seattle.
    You don't need to compare the hot .380, compare chrono data for Federal Hydra Shok to Barnaul Brown or Silver Bear HPs. HP vs. HP. Members of this board have conducted tests of both.

    Or, if you want to compare hot ammo to hot ammo, you can compare Corbon 9x18 to Santa Barbara 9mm corto (.380/9mm short). Steve A. Camp has done the .380 testing, you can find the results at www.hipowersandhandguns.com. And North Bender has contributed a wealth of data on the 9x18 round, which is stickied in the makarov forum.

    I haven't tried to get any .380 lately, because I have well over 2,000 rounds to feed my Arsenal mak. It's apparently still a popular cartridge in America after 100+ years. And odds are it will continue to be for some time, temporary shortages aside.
    Last edited by Looter; 06-20-2009 at 03:06 AM.

  15. #15
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    Crowcreek is correct. The 9mm Mak was purpose-built to provide max performance in a small blowback pistol.

    Another comes to mind, the even more powerful 9mm Browning Long. It was designed for max 9mm performance in a fullsize, blowback, service pistol, and it is no slouch, either, being very close to 9mm Luger.

    I cannot see the advantage of switching a 9mm Mak to a .380.

    I have used the 9mm Mak with FMJ's for some butcher stock shooting. It performs about a unimpressively as do many other service pistols when using FMJ's.

    My Bulgarian Makarov is very accurate tho, and that is at least as important for the uses I put it to here on the ranch.
    Formerly LeeSpeed; I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth...and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary...I believe in the Holy Spirit...the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.

  16. #16
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    Looter turned up another problem with the .380.

    Manufacturer's don't like selling hot ammo for an old platform. There are pistols in .32 and .380 floating around that are a century old. If you don't roll your own, you might have to settle for what's on the shelf.

    As a handloader, I know that ALL semiautomatics are made to operate within a certain range of pressure and recoil force. Anyone who shoots hot ammo in blowback pistols is just asking for trouble -- Unless the springs and whatnot are tailored to the load.

    Those hot loads are made for personal protection, and should be reserved for that use, even with a modern blowback pistol.

  17. #17
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    .380 auto data from www.hipowersandhandguns.com:

    Federal 90 gr Hydrashok: 1036 (ES: 80, SD: 23) = 214 ft. lbs.

    Corbon 90-gr. JHP +P: 1083 (ES: 45, SD: 17) = 234 ft. lbs.


    Data for currently available 9x18 loads, taken from NorthBender's ammo sticky:

    Brown Bear (Barnaul) 94-gr FMJ

    "In 2006 the Russian Barnaul Plant started exporting Brown Bear 9x18. Older Brown Bear cartridges were produced by the Russian LVE plant."

    Velocity: (feet per second)
    Range: 965 – 1009
    Avg: 982 = 201 ft. lbs.
    ES: 35
    SD: 9

    Silver Bear (Barnaul) 94-gr FMJ

    "In 2006 the Russian Barnaul plant started manufacturing Silver Bear. Older Silver Bear cartridges were produced by the Russian LVE plant."

    Velocity: (fps)
    Range: 930 – 1007
    Avg: 969 = 196 ft. lbs.
    ES: 77
    SD: 20

    WOLF "Military Classic" 95-gr FMJ

    "This offering from Wolf became available in early 2007. It's the first 9x18 ammunition that I've seen that's reported to be from the Ulyanovsk plant in Russia."

    Velocity: (fps)
    Range: 961 – 1069
    Avg: 1034 = 226 ft. lbs.
    ES: 108
    SD: 27

    The above data shows how similar the energy levels are between .380 and 9x18 Makarov. High-pressure .380 actually surpasses currently available 9x18 Makarov loadings in kinetic energy. So therefore, I disagree with the oft-repeated statement that 9x18 mak is comparable to a "+P" .380acp. And this is why I say that 9x18M and .380acp are just plain comparable, as far a kinetic energy is concerned.

  18. #18
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    Default Mak 380

    I purchased a Mak in 380 for the reasons you outlined. However, I quickly found that 380 is not cheaper. It is a lot more expensive, even for reloaded 380 which is currently what I have a box of. You do get a good choice of defensive rounds available from more commercial suppliers. However, most folks just don't know that Georgia Arms and Reeds sell very good defensive Mak ammo as an option compared to Hornady. I still go with the cheaper silver bear HP, which some folks question, possibly with good reason.

    Getting the special barrel press and the risk of things going haywire doesn't seem worth it.

    Watch for a 380 mak on GB or the trader here. You will pay less in the end, in my opinion, and be happier with having both calibers of the pistol.

    Really look at the store prices and online prices for the 380 ammo because if you assume its cheaper and better to get, you may be surprised.
    Last edited by steve98664; 06-20-2009 at 01:50 PM.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevenjay1 View Post
    MP517PRCT, you change out the entire barrel so the new barrel will have the correct chamber and bore diameter. It sounds like you are thinking of just shooting the .380 in a 9x18 barrel. Even though you can change the barrels, it is no easy task. Check out this link for additional information.

    http://www.makarov.com/barrlrep.html
    Sorry, you are correct, I was thinking that the dealer was selling barrels to "rechamber"

    Rebarrelling a 9mm Makarov to .380ACP doesn't make much sense right now considering the cost/availability of .380ACP, stick to the Mak!
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  20. #20
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    "Foreign-made 9x18mm ammunition is very inexpensive and allows for considerable shooting. It is much less costly than the ballistically similar .380 ACP and slightly more powerful."

    http://www.hipowersandhandguns.com/C...Makarovetc.htm

    This really isn't a 9mm vs. 45acp argument; We're talking about weapons which many consider to be "mouseguns". I would feel as secure with a can of mace.

    Back to the subject: It's 9x17 vs. 9x18. Can anyone ever really trust the math?

    [eta: No way in he!! I'd shoot Corbon out of my 1922 or a Colt pocket auto.]
    Last edited by crowcreek; 06-20-2009 at 11:01 PM.

  21. #21
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    Thanks for the replies guys. I got some good info (I'll pass on the .308 barrel) and spurred some informative posts.

    I may look into some of the defensive Mak ammo that Georgia Arms sells as well since I wasn't aware it was available.
    "When Stalin says dance, a wise man dances."
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    I am looking for a pre-war or war-time M38 stock

  22. #22
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    Default New makarov owner

    My model: Russian IJ70 Hi Cap .380 Have not seen many of these around
    Paid $300 with a multi-use holster and 50 rounds.

    Has anyone tried to change a .380 back to 9x18? According to all the smithies I have talked to it is a fairly simple dropin procedure as long as the pin and barrel can be removed. For those of you that have a 9x18 keep it as is. Ammo is easy to find and less expensive. .380 is hard to find here so that was my reason to swap barrels. Only $30 for barrel and $30 for the work.
    I took mine to the shop because I did not want to damage anything. I read the link for the swapout for a "threaded" barrel, but I dont think what he had to do will apply to this project. I will post my results after I get it back just in case there are any snags.

    STEVE

  23. #23
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    I agree with the comments about the 9x18 Makarov being more powerful than the .380 ACP. Of course it helps if you are talking about full Mil Spec vs. average, respectively. I think the point about the genesis from the 9mm Ultra cartridge to the heaviest practical military blowback is on target too. I wish the 9x18 were a little closer to the 9x19 than it is to the .380. Still, today, I rely on 9x18 either way even as I transition from a Makarov to a P-64...

    I reversed a .380 to the 9mm M. Besides what I think is a ballistic improvement -- my primary reason -- the latter is "authentic." It has been less expensive and is quite available today vs. .380. With the correct tools, particularly a barrel press and possibly a decent drill press and extra-hard bit, the transition is relatively easy. Might be cool to have a .380 barrel tho as it WAS the most popular cartridge once, but, if you're talking about those $50 jobbies that became available, might look around too...

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  24. #24
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    380 seems to have become pretty rare around here, thanks to the demise of the crap guns like Bryco that chambered it. 9x18 is more readily available and often cheaper

    The basic specifications for 9x18 put it about 1/3 of the way betweeen 380 and 9x19 in energy. .380 ACP SAAMI maximum average pressure is 17,000 c.u.p. The 9x18 military factory ammo from the USSR tested at 21,600 c.u.p. in Accurate Arms tests circa 1994.

    Unfortunately newer 9x18 ammo imports may have been affected by new EU ammunition specs that have cut the power of many of their pistol cartridges. In the USA there are no such limits and +P ammo is available for the 380 which gives it the same energy as the Mak military ammo. I think the +P producers are being foolish in making ammunition likely to be used in some horrible clunkers (My Bryco) but either they've made provisions to shield their assets from lawsuits or they figure the really bad pistols will jam more than they fire (My Bryco) and are unlikely to blow up.

    As for the Highpoint, it uses a very heavy slide to delay blowback. Others, like the Astra 400/600, use a very heavy spring. Neither is a desireable design solution, except from a cost standpoint. They save money by eliminating the locking action that requires precision machining.
    I swear by Jupiter Optimus Maximus .... in the army of the consul Lucius Quinctius Cincinnatus and for 10 miles around it I will not steal anything worth more than a sestertius in any one day.

  25. #25
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    the good thing about the hi point is after you run out of bullets you can still use it as a club.. as far as the .380, ammo for it in the oklahoma and arkansas region is a bear to find. most of the stuff one can procure is expensive as all get out. While the 9x18 is fairly cheap still. Though not as cheap as 7.62x25mm. (That caused me to trade in a kel tec for a TT-33.)

  26. #26
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    My hypothesis on why .380 is currently hard to find is based on the popularity of guns like the Ruger LCP, rather than the decline of cheap junk guns chambered in this caliber.

    9x18 Mak appears to be more powerful on paper, but in the real world there is no real difference between it and .380 ACP. Especially when comparing the currently available 9x18 M (Wolf MC and the Bears) to .380 auto.

  27. #27
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    (A) 9x18 Makarov has a miniscule edge on .380 (comparing standard ball to ball) in that the .364 bullet diameter offers a very slight improvement in sectional density.

    (B) In order to swap out barrels in a Makarov pistol, a barrel press is required, and that will cost you another $30-50, if you can locate one, as I think the company that offered them is now defunct.

    (C) 9x18 is cheap and available (including some hot rounds from Corbon and Hornaday).

  28. #28
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    What was Ruger thinking? They should have shortened the 9x19 case by 1.5mm to create a new blowback cartridge with a modern case.

    "9mm Ruger Ultra-Short"

    Yeah, that's the ticket! There will always be a huge market for sidearms which don't scorch the face or bruise the hand.
    Last edited by crowcreek; 09-17-2009 at 02:11 AM.

  29. #29
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    Let's not forget the best of them all; the 9mm Browning Long. Really excellent ballistics for a blowback round. It was purpose-built as the most powerful round designed specifically for BB pistols.
    Formerly LeeSpeed; I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth...and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary...I believe in the Holy Spirit...the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.

  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Looter View Post
    Well first off, there are a few 9x19 blowbacks, Hi-point even has .40 and .45 acp blowback pistols. So I don't know if saying 9x18 Mak is THE most powerful cartridge you can design a blowback pistol around is entirely correct.
    Yeah, and 70+ year old technology at that. The Astra 600 was chambered for 9mm Parabellum and is a blowback. The slide is heavy and the recoil spring...well, let's just say when you get that bushing to release, you need to hang on for dear life or you'll have a new dent in the ceiling or the cat will limp away at best speed whenever it smells hoppes'...

  31. #31
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    Default Who wants a blowback anyway.

    Llama made a lovely little 2/3 scale copy of the 1911 in 380 locked breech (same as the 1911) and Stoger imported them from about 1952 to early 1970's, they simplified it to blowback and went out of business soon after. It is more pleasant to shoot than the almost exact duplicate XA in 22LR blowback. The Ruger LCS and the newer Keltec are locked breech, locked by the simple method of pushing the chamber section of the barrel up into the ejection cutout, like the Sig. 380 ammo is hard to get because it was never available milsurp, and most of the police carry a 380 as a backup, along with many others that just carry it. Most of them believe that a 380 in your hand is much more powerful than a 9mm in your nightstand drawer. I just can't see why anyone would want the heavy weight, heavy springs and unreliable functioning of a blowback when a locked breech is so simple. The simple and essential difference is that the case does not have to move in the chamber while still under pressure, so that only the essential recoil due to bullet momentum has to be handled by the spring.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Steve View Post
    Llama made a lovely little 2/3 scale copy of the 1911 in 380 locked breech (same as the 1911) and Stoger imported them from about 1952 to early 1970's, they simplified it to blowback and went out of business soon after. It is more pleasant to shoot than the almost exact duplicate XA in 22LR blowback. The Ruger LCS and the newer Keltec are locked breech, locked by the simple method of pushing the chamber section of the barrel up into the ejection cutout, like the Sig. 380 ammo is hard to get because it was never available milsurp, and most of the police carry a 380 as a backup, along with many others that just carry it. Most of them believe that a 380 in your hand is much more powerful than a 9mm in your nightstand drawer. I just can't see why anyone would want the heavy weight, heavy springs and unreliable functioning of a blowback when a locked breech is so simple. The simple and essential difference is that the case does not have to move in the chamber while still under pressure, so that only the essential recoil due to bullet momentum has to be handled by the spring.

    If the issue is a tiny .380, there is nothing I can find fault with here.

    But as far as a small-medium-frame auto is concerned, it is hard to find any fault with the Makarov. Especially with the simple dehorning I did to mine; reduced the height of the rear sight and front sight and filed and sanded all sharp edges off, then had it reblued.

    One advantage blowbacks offer in theory {and in practice as concerns the Mak} is very fine accuracy IF they possess a fixed barrel.
    Formerly LeeSpeed; I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth...and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary...I believe in the Holy Spirit...the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Steve View Post
    I just can't see why anyone would want the heavy weight, heavy springs and unreliable functioning of a blowback when a locked breech is so simple.
    A locked breech is more simple than a blowback? How is a pistol with a locking mechanism more simple than one that just uses the strength of the recoil spring and the mass of the slide to keep the breech closed?

    And unreliable?

    You must've never have owned a Makarov.

    I used to think the Keltec was a neat .380, until I joined one of their user forums and saw the incidence of reported parts failures and problems with them being picky about what ammo they would eat.

  34. #34
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    A locked breech pistol is not, of course, more simple to manufacture than a blowback. I read that to mean simple operate, meaning, both function the same per the operator.

    A locked breech pistol can be made lighter than a blowback and that is one of the major reasons full power pistols are typically locked breech designs.
    Formerly LeeSpeed; I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth...and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary...I believe in the Holy Spirit...the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.

  35. #35
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    Default Simple vs simpler

    Hey 9.3 X 57
    Thanks for the comments, I didn't intend to disparage the Makarov, which I have never handled but thousands of people think they work well and I certainly accept that.

    As far a simple to manufacture, one can agree that a blowback doesn't require a locking mechanism so it must be simpler to make, but the later generation of pistols mostly simply use a ramp to force the chamber into the ejection port, most of the blowback designs just pin the barrel in place, the total number of parts is the same. As you point out, the blowback design will be more accurate if the barrel is solidly mounted, but in most designs it isn't. In any case modern machinery can make either design much more accurate than one can expect to be able to shoot a pocket size pistol, My Llama is relatively crude in internal machining, however nicely finished outside, but easily shoots 4" groups at 25 ft.

    The comments about Keltec basically proves my point about reliability, the Keltecs up to the current model were blowbacks, and suffered the real problem with light pistols and blowbacks, the light slide and heavy spring mean there is very little momentum, so small differences in friction betweem the case mouth and the chamber wall make a large difference in operation, the presence or absence of some oil or wax on the case means the difference between operating or stovepiping the fired case. Slightly oiling the cases by handling them works fine at the range, but not so well on a carry pistol which is expected to work "now", whenever that is.

    The reveiws on the new Keltec, indicate a very high level of reliability, which Keltec makes a point of in advertising about the locked breech action. With the locked breech and short recoil barrel, the case does not have to move in the chamber before the pressure is gone and the case mouth springback has released it, so case friction isn't a factor, and a very much lighter spring is sufficient to absorb the recoil. It seems to have taken an unnecessarily long time for Keltec to get it right, but reportedly they have.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Old Steve View Post
    The comments about Keltec basically proves my point about reliability, the Keltecs up to the current model were blowbacks
    What KT handgun has ever been blowback? The P3AT has always been a locked-breech design.
    Last edited by Looter; 09-27-2009 at 02:39 PM.

  37. #37
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    Default Keltecs

    Sorry if I was confused about earlier Keltec offerings, I was relying on questionable sources. There is no question the P3AT is a locked breech, as is the Ruger LCS, I have read recent articles comparing the P3AT very favorably with the Ruger as far as feeding reliability. Being in California it is difficult to get possession of either. The information I had was that the P3AT is a relatively recent design, and that earlier designs from Keltec were blowbacks. Sorry if that is incorrect.

    A friend has a Berreta .380 which is a blowback and is reliable, It also weighs about as much as a Colt Commander, and has a spring that is very hard for him to pull.

  38. #38
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Delaware
    Posts
    5

    Question Just the way it is.

    I recently purchased an IJ70-17A that
    was made for the .380 ACP and from putting the
    first 100 rounds through it-I can't see the need
    for a bigger cartridge or more than the eight already
    provided in the magazine? I would like to know how
    old it is though as I can't find any date markings for
    it on the FAQ of Makarov.com with the serial number of: B HE 1873 and B-West Imports of Tucson Ariz (the distributor) I don't think
    is in buisness any more-so does anyone know how I can find out
    just how old this pistol is?

  39. #39
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Posts
    350

    Default

    I bought a B-West imported 380 acp Markavov like your's in 1995. It was new in the box, and the serial number was slightly higher than your's. So your pistol probably dates to around the mid 1990s.

  40. #40
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Delaware
    Posts
    5

    Default

    Thank You Tom for the info and I think mine is just about that old
    and it now has an owner(me) and his property to protect and I feel it will be
    very qualified to do that-if the call ever comes? The only difficulty I've had
    is reassembling the slide back onto the reciever as the recoil
    spring sometimes takes on 'super human strength' to thwart an easy assembly
    but, like sex and riding a bike-the more you do it-the better you get and so it
    so it will be with this too? Happy Thankgiving to you and yours!!
    Last edited by Shooterbug; 11-21-2009 at 09:30 AM. Reason: to add several words

  41. #41
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Delaware
    Posts
    5

    Question 380 ACP ammo shortage-a reason.

    I recently discussed the shortage of .380 ACP ammo
    with a recently retired policeman and was told, "...the
    three eighty kills more people than any other round because
    todays criminals favor it and some gun shops are pretty particulair
    about who they sell it too and from the 'git go' if they don't
    like your looks-you'll be told, "Sorry we're all out?"
    and that's that?" What 'your looks' are he didn't detail
    but, did mention age, race and tattoos and even
    then, "...it's all up to where the shop selling the ammo is located and
    how you are 'seen to be' by the clerk behind the counter?"

    The retired officer spent all of his career on the mid atlantic coast
    so what he told me might not apply to other areas nationally and I
    hope I haven't 'kicked up a lot of sand' with this but, considering how
    things are today-it does make sense? :cool:

  42. #42
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Dixie
    Posts
    5,583

    Default

    considering how things are today-it does make sense?
    Not the first bit from where I sit.

    SlimTim
    Budweiser's Real Man of Genius: Mr. Gun Show Junkie

    Georgians! Tennesseans! Join your neighbors in the TN/GA Shooters forum.



  43. #43
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Iowa
    Posts
    3,104

    Default

    If you watch documentary-style, true crime shows like "The First 48", you will see a lot of .380s used in crimes. Not because it's a particularly powerful handgun caliber, it's just easy to manufacture a zinc-framed blowback. So they're cheap and plentiful on the "secondary market".

  44. #44
    545443453534435345345 Guest

    Default

    Surprised no one referenced this:

    GoldenLoki gel tests for both .380 ACP and the 9x18 Makarov.

    http://www.goldenloki.com/ammo/gel/9x18/gel9x18.htm

    http://www.goldenloki.com/ammo/gel/380acp/gel380acp.htm

    The Makarov ammunition is all over the place, ranging from 194 FPE for an older CorBon loading at the low end up to 249 FPE for a Wolf FMJ. Expanding Point ammunition performed, at best to a penetration of 11.5", a mere half inch short of the magic 12". The best expanding round expanded to .671" and the least expanding round "only" expanded to .486". No rounds failed to expand. The FMJ penetrated a solid 21.9"

    The .380 ACP ammunition also ranged far and wide, from 135 FPE to a high of 181 FPE. The best penetration by an Expanding Point round which actually expanded was 13.3", nearly a inch and a half past the magic 12". The best expanding round expanded to .645" with some ammunition failing to expand appreciably (or at all). The 380 FMJ far underperformed the Mak. FMJ, scoring only 17" for the best penetrator. This is important because some feel more comfortable using FMJ for both of these rounds than HPs for a variety of reasons.

    Thus, for four major metrics:
    FPE: Decision - Makarov
    Penetration in JHP: Decision - .380
    Reliable Expansion: Decision - Makarov
    Penetration in FMJ: Decision - Makarov

    Judging from these tests, the 9x18 Makarov is marginally more powerful/effective than the .380 ACP in 3 out of 4 respects.

    This is the part where people argue endlessly over the applicability of FPE, the FBI Penetration Minimum to people not shooting through cover/concealment, how much difference a .35"-ish wound channel makes over a .6"-ish wound channel at pistol weights and velocities, and how much penetration is acceptable to trade for reliable expansion.

    We now return you to your regularly scheduled holy war pitting what many consider two sub-par calibers against each other. (not me though. I happen to like 'em both.)

    Peace favor your sword,
    Kirk

  45. #45
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Iowa
    Posts
    3,104

    Default

    lklawson: Barrel length matters. That .380 data from the goldenloki site was obtained using a Keltec P3AT, which has a shorter barrel than the Makarov used to obtain the 9x18 data that you reference.

    The advantage grows slimmer when you factor this in.

    I think they're both good calibers too. But, In my opinion, the only advantage that 9x18 Mak has currently is price.

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