Tuesday, October 12, 2004

My favorite inexpensive handgun

Every so often I'm asked to recommend an inexpensive handgun. I invariably suggest the Makarov, or Pistol M, as it's designated in Russia. It's a simple, reliable, and surprisingly accurate design, and was the standard sidearm of the USSR from around 1950 until the Soviet Union's collapse. The Russians are now replacing the Mak with a newer design, chambered for 9x19, which is more powerful. However, the 9x18 Makarov is still a decent round for self defense, being a bit more powerful than .380 ACP.

My Bulgarian-made Mak is utterly reliable. I've put about 450 - 500 rounds through it. The only malfunction was a single failure of the slide to lock back on an empty magazine. It is the single most reliable semiautomatic pistol I've ever owned, and that includes two Browning High Powers, a CZ-85, a Springfield M1911-A1, and a Browning Buck Mark. Curiously enough, the Mak was also the least expensive. My dad has had similar experiences. I paid $130 for it several years ago, new in the box.

My testing of the Makarov pales in comparison to that described in this thread on Glock Talk. All I can say is, "Wow!"

1 comment:

thelastlemming said...

I will think about buying this for protecting my home.

Thanks for the advice.