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Posted: 1/11/2006 10:10:04 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/11/2006 10:10:52 PM EDT by Commando223]
How good are these pistols? reliability, accuracy ect


Link Posted: 1/11/2006 11:13:12 PM EDT
There is some info on these in the Makarov forum. I hear they are good guns.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 4:56:46 AM EDT
My dad has one and I would say it is a poor pistol. Dont get me wrong, it is worth all $100 he spent on it but no more. The PA-63 has the worst trigger I have yet to feel on a pistol. It is heavy and creepy. Even in singel action it is really sloppy. The safty on the slide is so stiff that I almost cuts my hand when I try to use it. The gun also does not feed reliably with all 7rds in the mag. I would pass on one and get a real Mak.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 5:49:09 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/12/2006 5:50:05 AM EDT by BankerBilly]
Well . . I've got one and it's not THAT bad ! !

Matter of fact . . . I've got a total of four FEG pistols ! ! (one in 22 lr, two in 9mm Mak and one in 380 ACP)

Trigger pull is a little "stiff" but I replaced the hammer spring with a 18# Walther hammer spring from Wolff. Safety too can be a little stiff, but a little bit of Break-Free and work it about a 100 times and it will improve.

Mine came with two 7 round mags and has been 100% reliable with three different brands of Ruskie steel cased ammo, both HP's and FMC's (Wolf, Brown Bear and Silver Bear).

Ain't no target pistol, but if I do my part I can hit a bowling pin at 50 yards most of the time.

Price right now is pretty cheap. If I can find one at the local toy show for $150 I'll buy it . . .
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 7:22:47 AM EDT
Ya I lightened the trigger pull of my dads gun by cutting off a few coils of the hammer spring. It helped alot.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 3:59:06 PM EDT
I have one and it is my prefered CCW piece. Why do I choose it when my options are handguns like a Browning Highpower or a Ruger Security six or even the old faithful colt 1911?
Because it is light and reliable. It is plenty accurate for what it is and the alloy frame won't rust. It has good power for its size and weight. The only downside is a rather poor double action pull and a backwards operating safety (up to fire). However I do not carry it with the safety on. I carry round in chamber and hammer down. If I have to shoot the first shot is DA then it goes SA. The heavy DA trigger acts as a buffer when drawing and firing the first shot. A heavy trigger is less likely to "accidently" get pulled than some super light job. Now I know I am going to get flamed by the safety nazis here but since I have had SA autos (like the 1911 and BHP) safeties slip off when in there holsters I can't see how a chambered round under a down hammer could even approach the danger level of a slipped safety.
I do realize it won't last forever, it is not a heavily built gun but since I do a hell of a lot more carrying than shooting with it I will stick with it til I can come up with something I like more.

Oh yeah, the recoil is a bit stiff with the low weight and 9 mak round so be prepared for the tinglies after a few rounds through it.
Link Posted: 1/12/2006 4:14:01 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/12/2006 4:14:35 PM EDT by rebel13]
Well, I own one along with a Bulgarian Makarov and a commercial Russian Makarov.

Pros on the PA-63

Accurate (for defensive purposes)
Reliable
Lightweight
Not many snagging areas

Cons on the PA-63
Very hard DA pull (some could say this is a pro tho)
Most, not all, have problems with hollowpoints due to the flared lip on the magazines. preventing the rounds from being fed up by the follower. (Not a problem on both Maks)
With the standard grips, the thumbrest bulges out a bit.

Overall, for the price I would say that if the weight is not that much of a difference to you, the makarov seems to be a better shooter and swallows any hollowpoint you put in it.

just my .02 worth.
Link Posted: 1/13/2006 1:50:56 AM EDT
I have one that I carry often. I installed the spring kit from Makarov.com and to me, the trigger is quite nice in its operation. Mine won't load the Barnaul HP ammo in its mags because of the ojive of the bullet in that round, but fmj feeds perfectly. I shoot it about once a month as with all my carry guns, and it always works properly and is plenty accurate for me at self defence ranges. I would like to find some flat grips and get rid of that thumb rest though. That is the only minus I have for the gun.
Link Posted: 1/13/2006 1:10:50 PM EDT
On the hollowpoint jamming.
I handload my defensive ammo (Yeah I know, say what you want I will keep on doing it)
and I have found the hornady XTP (95grs I think) feed very well in mine. Of course others may not but it might be worth looking into.
Link Posted: 1/13/2006 4:50:52 PM EDT
PA63 is a good workmanlike carry pistol with some nifty features.

For starters, its got a trigger activated firing pin safety which has two primary features: First, until the trigger is pulled, the rear of the firing pin is not lined up with the hammer, so a smack to the hammer cannot fire a chambered round. Second, until the trigger is pulled, the firing pin (safety on or off) the firing pin is unable to move forward. The firing pin also has a strong spring. Its drop safe, in that until the firing pin is raised to line up with the hammer, its mechanically blocked from moving forward. These are design features that are NOT present in the Walther PPK.

Mag feeding issues are rare EXCEPT with with the truncated cone shaped Wolf ammo, which hangs on the front of the mag. Mine has been uber reliable (its a .380 model).

Trigger pull "out of the box" is exactly what you would expect for a design based on the Walther double action trigger mechanism, which has the double aciton pawl at a serious mechanical disadvantage when pushing the hammer. Even so, polishing of the sear and D.A. hammer surface, as well as using a slightly less powerful hammer spring can bring very acceptable performance to the trigger.

The safety is indeed hard to turn on and off on a less worn pistol, which is a function of the detents in the safety lever. If you pull the lever out and dress the edges of the detent holes, it works a lot better; however, I should mention that I carry mine hammer down, round in the chamber, and safety off. The safety has a good decocker, and even with the safety "ON" it is possible to open the action or feed a round from the magazine. (if you do this, as soon as the slide closes, the safety will tripp the hammer drop: Don't worry, the safety blocks the hammer and if you don't have the trigger pulled the firing pin can't move forward anyway.


Most people replace the recoil spring with a slightly heavier version available at Makarov.com.

As a "fixed" barrel gun, the accuracy of these little guys is pretty good. I recommend against shooting the heaviest 9x18 loads or CORBON of any kind in these aluminum framed pistols, however -- especially if you leave the stock spring in it.

Sighs are lame: small notch rear and tiny front machined right into the frame. However, any good smith can mill in some dovetails to allow for a broader selection of sight options.

Like the original Walther PPK, the slide is "low" so there is a possibility for "snakebite" from the sharp bottom edges of the slide if you adopt a "high" hold. Also, as a relatively light pistol, the recoil is surprisingly abrupt, and some shooters complaint about that.

Parts are relatively scarce. The pistol's firing pin does not have a "forward travel" stop built in, and although of better metalurgy than the old Spanish Star pistols or the CZ52, the pins can break if the gun is dry fired without a snap cap. The firing pin is a complex one, and its not something a smith will be able to "fab" up for you cheaply, so always keep a snap cap in the gun.

The pistol, becuase of its size, had to have a thumbrest grip installed upon import to the US. There is a "slimline" plastic grip for sale on Makarov.com that is simply FANTASTIC in terms of the improvement it makes. (indeed, most "high holds" that result in snakebite are a result of the poorly placed thumbrest on the grips most of these pistols have).

PA-63s should run between $140 and $200.

A shorter grip and barrel version called the SMC-380 usually goes for $250.

Commercial versions from Kassnar and Interarms can be located as the "PMK" and "PPH"
Incidentally, these are what you should click to on Numrich if you're looking for parts for your PA-63. It is NOT QUITE fully compatible with a Walther.

Link Posted: 1/14/2006 2:03:20 AM EDT
Thanks for the replies, I am looking for something to carry that I wont have to baby or really worry about it rusting since its cheap (unlike my big overpriced Sig 220 ) . AimSurplus got a small batch of these for $139 it seems like a good deal for a beater gun kinda like the Wasr 10 of pistols .

Link Posted: 1/14/2006 11:45:39 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/15/2006 8:17:24 AM EDT by NickySantoro]

Originally Posted By Commando223:
How good are these pistols? reliability, accuracy ect


www.aimsurplus.com/acatalog/PA63.gif



Fine pistol. Extremely well made. Stiff DA trigger. I have an FEG R61, .380, slightly smaller, which holds 6+1 instead of 7+1. Otherwise the same. After polishing the feed ramp it is 100% with everything. Good carry or back-up piece.
Link Posted: 1/14/2006 3:19:34 PM EDT
Would like to add . . . .

I think most of the problems people have with the HP ammo is that the ammo has 115 grain bullets. I've fired approx 300 rounds of HP ammo thru my FEG's and Maks and never had any problems. But then again the HP ammo is 95 grain Barnaul HP ammo, not the 115 grain HP's.

Seems that the 115 grain HP's are a little longer than the 95 grain HP's and they tend to hang-up in the mags.

Just my 2 cents . . .
Link Posted: 1/14/2006 3:51:29 PM EDT

Originally Posted By BankerBilly:
Would like to add . . . .

I think most of the problems people have with the HP ammo is that the ammo has 115 grain bullets. I've fired approx 300 rounds of HP ammo thru my FEG's and Maks and never had any problems. But then again the HP ammo is 95 grain Barnaul HP ammo, not the 115 grain HP's.

Seems that the 115 grain HP's are a little longer than the 95 grain HP's and they tend to hang-up in the mags.

Just my 2 cents . . .



A good obseration.

To that, I would add, 9x18 ammo historically (and certainly when the PA-63 was designed) came with 95 grain projectiles. The heavier ammo offered by Wolf and others is probably not adivisable not just from the perspective of feeding, but (at least with stock recoil springs) from the view of durability, given the aluminum frame of these guns.

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