Actual and effective barrel lengths?
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Thread: Actual and effective barrel lengths?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    N. Louisiana
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    264

    Default Actual and effective barrel lengths?

    Locked breach barrels, or at least the Browning dropping block type with the "hood" over the rim and extractor groove, have this hood to guide the barrel up the bolt face when no round is present and the chambered round doesn't add any to the length of it. When you drop a round into the chamber it fits only up to the rear of the body but the rim and the groove fit under this hood. Straight blow backs are different in that no hood is needed since the barrel never touches the bolt face anyway but sits on a ring about .16" from the bolt allowing room for the rim and groove of a loaded round.

    Makarovs are advertised as having a barrel length of 3.83" but Henry Brown and Cameron White's book "The Makarov Pistol" state a barrel length of 3.67" (93mm). Since barrel lengths can be measured from bolt face to barrel end (effective length) or from breach to barrel end (actual length) I removed the slide and measured mine. It came to 3.67" and not wanting to try to ram a ruler down the barrel I simply put a round into the chamber and measured from the back of the round to the end of the barrel coming up with 3.83".

    So my question is, since both methods seem to be right; which method should be use on a Makarov (or any blow back) or should I just get a life and stop nit picking barrel lengths anyway?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    635

    Default

    Hi jp,
    I don't think anybody is going to tell you to get a life when it comes to firearms; especially Makarovs on this forum. Known barrel length is important in cases of legallity, say owning a pistol in Canada or a shotgun/rifle in the U.S., etc.
    For barrel length of a firearm in serviceable condition, according to ATF rules there's this:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_v5c_p1Uju0

    I haven't measured a Makarov barrel length, but these two sources say 93.5 mm.
    http://modernfirearms.net/handguns/h...-pm-pmm-e.html
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Makarov_pistol

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    N. Louisiana
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    Default

    Hello martinbanner. Your first link (indicating ATF rules) used effective or breach face to barrel end and is 3.83". The second two listed actual length or 3.67" (93 or 93.5 mm). Neither measurement would be legal in Canada but I might stick with the first since ATF rules were used.

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  5. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    N.C.
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    Default

    Hi. It ultimately comes down to picking which measurements to go with. It depends on which source and I went with Russian sources. The others aren't wrong, but if you include them it just gets to be a case of "too much information" for a simple collector's book. For example, why stop measuring at a tenth of a millimeter if you really want the final word in precision? Good detective work jpshaw! Regards, ABTOMAT

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    N.C.
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    924

    Default

    Additional. When I stated I used Russian sources I should specify that the 93 mm barrel length is what is printed in the military manuals. The Baikal IJ-70A instruction books give the barrel length as 93.5 mm. Cheers, ABTOMAT

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