Object Title

Centrefire self-loading pistol - Makarov Type 59

Centrefire self-loading pistol - Makarov Type 59


made 1962

Object Number



Gifted with the Pattern Room by the Ministry of Defence, August 2005 Purchased by the Pattern Room from Charnwood Ordnance Ltd, Leicester, November 1991

Physical Description

The Chinese copy of the Makarov PM is a medium-size pistol with a straight blowback action and is of all steel construction with a frame-fixed barrel. In a blowback designs such as this, the only force holding the slide closed is that of the recoil spring wrapped around the barrel; as a consequence upon firing the barrel and slide do not have to unlock. Blowback designs are simple and more accurate than designs using a recoiling, tilting, or articulated barrel, but they are limited practically by the need to have weight in the slide. The 9×18mm cartridge (Russian designation: 57-N-181S) around which this pistol was designed provides enough energy to action the blowback design. The Makarov design is widely regarded as particularly well balanced. The slide also has a full- length textured anti-glare strip on the top
In concept the Makarov PM and its Chinese copy is a very simple pistol, the designer Makarov and his team, during development, drastically simplified the construction of the pistol, improving its reliability and reducing the number of parts to an astonishing 27, not including the magazine.
The chrome-lined, 4-groove, right hand twist, 9.27mm (true calibre) barrel is pressed and pinned to the frame through a precision-machined ring. There is a 7kg rated recoil spring that wraps around the barrel which also acts as the spring guide.
The front sight is integrally machined into the slide. The fixed rear sight is dovetailed into the slide. The extractor is of an external spring-loaded type. The breech face is deeply recessed in order to improve extraction and ejection reliability. The stamped sheet steel slide-lock lever has an internal tail serving the additional purpose of an ejector. The one-piece, wraparound bakelite or later plastic grip is reinforced with steel inserts and has a detent inside the screw bushing preventing unscrewing during firing. There is an impressed shield containing the 5 stars of the PRC flag on each side of the grip. A lanyard ring is affixed on the left side of the grip.
The sheet-metal mainspring housed inside the grip operates the hammer, the trigger and the disconnector, and its lower end is the heel and spring of the magazine catch. The sear spring also serves a dual purpose by operating the slide-lock lever.
The Model PM has a free-floating triangular shaped firing pin, with no firing pin spring or firing pin block.


Forged, Cast



OverallHeight128 mm
OverallLength161 mm
OverallWeight730 g
BarrelLength93.5 mm


Serial Number 4050516


9 mm

Inscriptions and Marks

Maker's mark
66 within a triangle
on the rear left side of the frame


Places China/Asia