Ladies and gentlemen I am trying to pin down the date of some production changes in the Bulgarian made Makarov pistols. If you would like to help here is what you can do. Pull the magazine and make sure the pistol is empty. Look up the magazine well. Just above the grip screw boss the frame will be either smooth or there will be a rectangular window cut out. Please post the year of manufacture, (1960 + the 2 digits after the Cyrillic letters of the serial number, i.e. PE 22 1234 = a 1982 date.) Finally, just say "yes" for a window or "no" for a smooth unbroken backstrap, "1988 Yes" would be an example.
Thank you very much. ABTOMAT
1983 - No.
1995, and No
Just because you're offended doesn't mean you're right.
Last edited by martinbanner; 12-03-2016 at 08:13 PM. Reason: included Arsenal commercial
1989 - Yes
1986 - yes
1982 - no
1990 - No
1996 - No
Last edited by bvd1; 12-04-2016 at 09:32 AM.
Super info gentlement. Based upon this sample the window appeared on the frame around 1986(?) was dropped around 1990. It would be nice to get some more input, especially 1985 and more from the 1989-1990 years. As to why a window I don't know. How much weight would it actually save? Maybe customers specified this as a desirable feature? So, please add more info if you haven't. Thanks you all so much for helping. ABTOMAT
ABTOMAT, any idea when the 2nd volume of your book will be done? I can't wait to read it!! :D
You are looking at some of the research now. One problem with research is that you have to look and see things to the point you can ask a question in the first place. This post is about that. Frankly, there is not a whole lot of variation about the Bulgarians vs the Russian ones. There are, however, a lot more Bulgarians around so we can take advantage of that with a posting like this. One thing I will state about the Bulgarians that has become clear, PM's and indeed all the small arms they produced seemed to have been adopted and produced with an eye for making a profit from the get go. Therefore any changes may not reflect their military's needs, (pretty small at that,) but the customers they were selling to. I've also heard a rumor I'm trying to track down that the Slovenia sourced PM's originally were destined for the Serb-Croatia war and ended up in Slovenia by default. Anyone else heard of that? Ciao, ABTOMAT
One thing I DID notice when I perused the Slovenian "manual" that came with my Bulgarian Mak is it appeared to have been 'signed into service' and 'signed out of service' on exactly the same date.
I can't tell if this was or wasn't in the same year, but it would be a somewhat strange coincidence for this to be in different years. The imprint and the handwriting on the two dates looked VERY similar, which seems to support the 'same day' theory.
I don't know precisely why this was, but I believe that these guns were not intended for Slovenia to be the 'end user'. I figure they were 'laundering' them.
My Mak with the Manual was built in 1990. The Serb-Croatia war (1991-2001) was definitely going on in the same timeframe when that gun would be looking for a home. Slovenia is right next door to Croatia, and Serbia is adjacent to Bulgaria, so it seems feasible that somebody was supplying Makarovs to both sides, and somehow Slovenia didn't get around to shipping them out.
I have no proof, but I am guessing the 'Slovenian Stop' made by these pistols was just an arms trader's ruse.
But it's more of an oval window than a rectangle (long sides are straight, but top and bottom are rounded). Not sure if that's any shade of new information, but I figure I'd share since I was here
MrSticky, you are correct, they are oval in that the corners are rounded. I just picked "rectangular" because I thought it was a little more universal term that would work, especially if someone is looking up the magazine well. Thanks for your reply and folks, keep 'em coming. The bigger the sample the better the info. Cheers, ABTOMAT
1986 - no.
The first two numbers, 31, were added to 1960.
Why was that opening designed-as weight reduction?
Last edited by Laufer; 12-09-2016 at 11:48 PM.
1985 - yes
Thanks for more info. Looks more and more like the change occurred in 1985-86 ABTOMAT
Why does my 1960 E.G. Makarov have the same window? Is it supposed to be just a Bulgarian thing?
1993 - yes
Mackaccurateone, I'm still trying to get a handle on the Bulgarians. The Russians had them until 1959, the DDR PMs had them for a couple of years later. The Chinese have them. Remember, they both adopted the Makarov from the Russians prior to 1960. Also, please keep in mind that changes could involve 2 or 3 years. Confusingly yours, ABTOMAT
1975 - no
The results are in. Based upon a total sample of 39 pistols to date, (but not limited to 39,) Here is what can be gleaned. The window in the Bulgarian PM frames appeared circa 1985. Between 1985 and 1989 it was common. From 1990 on it appears sporadically with solid frames. As to why it appeared we may only speculate, though it is possible it was a response to customer feedback. The appearance of the window after 1989 is not consistent and may reflect using older stock frames at various stages of manufacture with newer production. Again this is speculation. Unless someone from Kazanlac show up at my doorstep with all the answers we may never know. If you have not participated in this survey now is the time. Thanks to everyone, ABTOMAT
it's an Oval shape on the Bulgy (my second), acquired last week, not rectangular.
1960+28, 1988. Imported though Redmond WA.
Hi, new to the forum.
1990 - Yes
1983 - No
1985 (x2) - yes
1987 - yes
Member: SEGMC; MSR-16