The Polish CZAK pistol (aka the P64)

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by LittleMan LittleMan 3 hours, 45 minutes ago.

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  • #727
    LittleMan
    LittleMan
    Keymaster

    This pistol also called the C64 was developed in the 1960s for the Polish Warsaw Pact military and police as an altternative to using the Makarov pistol. It served the Polish through the 1970s. Although it has since been replaced by other pistols it is still in use with some Polish forces. Recently many P64s were declared surplus and sold. Consequentially they have begun to appear inside the US.
    The pistol is very similar to the old Walther PPK in appearance and size, but it is chambered for the 9×18 Makarov round which is a more powerful cartridge than the .32 and .380 cartridges. Like the Walther its trigger is both double and single action capable. The magazine holds 6 shots. The construction is steel and the quality appears to be typical of what comes out of Radom, i.e., high. The gun is straight blowback in operation. The slide does lock back when the magazine is empty but the release is internal, not external. The slide must be pulled back then released after changing to a loaded magazine or removing the magazine. The safety lever is dual function. It both lowers the hammer and also blocks the firing pin. In safe position the gun can not be fired.
    The biggest drawbacks to this pistol are poor sights, an overly heavy trigger pull (Wolff Springs sells replacement spring kits which dramatically improve the trigger pull). Also the recessed magazine release in the pistol butt takes practice to get used to.
    Currently these normally sell inside the US as a surplus military pistol and usually for less than $250. This loe price coupled with very good construction and a reputation for high reliability makes this a pistol worth taking a look at.

    I experienced one stovepipe jam in 25 rounds. This may have been my fault as my thumb brushed the slide on that shot. All in all given a choice between carrying a Walther PPK in .380, or carrying one of these, I woulld definitely opt for the C64. I have some surplus Makarov ammunition on the way and look forward to doing more firing with this pistol.

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  • #756
    LittleMan
    LittleMan
    Keymaster

    I added some Wolff 17 pound hammer springs to one of my P64s and took it out for a function test. I experienced several stovepipe jams with one of my magazines, but the other 3 magazines worked perfectly. More importantly, in the P64 the hammer spring is also the magazine catch release spring. Switching our the hammer spring to a lighter one allowed the magazine catch to flex under recoil. The end result as shown in the video below was the last round of each magazine was accompanied by the magazine dropping free of the gun and the slide not locking open when the last shot was fired.

    I will obtain some 18 or 19 pound springs and see if that solves the problem.

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 3 months ago by LittleMan LittleMan.
  • #989
    LittleMan
    LittleMan
    Keymaster

    If, besides the horrid factory DA trigger pull there is a failing of the P64 it would be in terrible factory sights. A solution exists. Grind or machine off the factory front sight and replace it with a small fiber optic (aka light pipe). Light pipes are available in many colors, blue, green, red, white, etc. The difference is dramatic.

    Here you can see a P64 as it left the factory above and alongside a P64 that has been personalized with a better (Wolff) mainspring, wooden grips and a fiber optic front sight.

    You can see from the personalized P64 being aimed at a door the improvement in quick acquisition of the target is dramatic.

  • #10159
    LittleMan
    LittleMan
    Keymaster

    Please see the article posted in the gunsmith forum about converting your P64 to work with an 8(!) round magazine. The simple steps shown there will go a long way from transforming your P64 from a Cold War relic to something not terribly impractical in today’s world.

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