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Makarov Pistols


Makarov Pistols

Bob Dunlap is a renowned expert on most of todays and yesterdays important and obscure firearms. He has been a warranty station for most manufacturers, both large and small. His understanding of the design, function, and repair of firearms in general is unsurpassed, and his appreciation of European and exotic arms is legendary among his students. The Makarov was an extremely successful Soviet Bloc service pistol, and its 9x18 cartridge is an amazingly entertaining jackrabbit motivator. These particular guns have been imported to the U. S. in big numbers since the collapse of the Evil Empire and this course is designed to help all of you owners who love the gun, but are a little mystified about its workings. In typical AGI fashion, we use a cut-away gun that allows you to see how the various parts work and interact.

If you want the quick course on how to get this Russian semi-auto pistol apart, back together, and operating as intended, then this course is for you (if you want the "long course," look into our basic 108 hour Professional Gunsmith Course.)

Among the items covered are:


  • Pistol was designed by Nikolai Makarov in the late 40s and became the Russian service weapon from 1951 thru 1991
  • Most of the guns were made in China, Russia, and east Germany, with quality in the same order, lowest to highest
  • 9x18 (.355 cal) cartridge is actually 9.25 mm (.366 cal) and thus could not be used in NATO weapons
  • Gun is a good value, and currently it is also relatively cheap on the surplus market
  • Was designed to have few parts, hard to lose parts, and easy to disassemble
  • Pistol is a conventional double action, straight blow back operated pistol
  • Bears a strong resemblance to the Walther PP/PPK, both physically and in some of its design features

Design & Function

  • Straight blow back operation demonstrated and defined
  • Ejection and extraction for blow back systems explained and demonstrated. Why extractors in these guns  do not really extract
  • How the typical probability of East Bloc cartridge case failure in their firearms is considered in the design of the extractor
  • Slide face is fully enclosed and the case head is surrounded by steel so that it cannot fall off the extractor, making ejection very reliable
  • The barrel ramp ends slightly above the magazine box, making stub jams likely with anything other than pointed military ball ammo. It needs to be lowered somewhat to reliably feed other types of ammo
  • Demonstration and explanation of the slide stop operation
  • Fire control system operation, both double and single action
  • Interesting grip screw retention shown, it is on Russian and Chinese guns
  • Fire control system removed and its intricacies shown and explained
  • The disconnect system, how the slide configuration cams the trigger bar out of engagement
  • Hammer rebound and safety operation shown, and the four things that the safety does and how it does it
  • The trigger guard, what else it does and how it does it


  • Extensive disassembly, and instructions on how to take apart those parts/assemblies not disassembled
  • Explanation of why the guns have different rear sights and grips, Clinton era points system. Rear sight removal from Russian gun
  • Field stripping the gun
  • Slide and recoil spring removal
  • Slide stop removal
  • Grip removal
  • Mainspring removal
  • Slide stop, sear, and hammer removal
  • Trigger and trigger guard removal
  • Barrel removal and disassembly demonstrated
  • Slide disassembly
  • Slide disassembly continues with the extractor and firing pin blocking safety
  • Magazine disassembly explained and shown
  • You get a good look at how the various parts fit together and interact (particularly the springs) after they are removed from the gun and Bob splains things

Cleaning & Lubrication

  • AGI cleaning & lubrication methods shown, along with the reasons for their use
  • After cleaning, dry with air gun, or in the oven on Warm ~185-200 degrees (metal parts ONLY)
  • Lubing the Bob way, and what kind he likes


  • Barrel cleaning
  • Sear assembly
  • Slide stop
  • Extractor rules


  • Pins, slave and tapered, hook, punches, etc. Helpful tools that may be required to help you get a gun back together easier
  • Slide reassembly; extractor, safety, firing pin
  • Barrel reassembly
  • Trigger, trigger bar, and trigger guard reassembly
  • Hammer, sear, and slide stop reassembly
  • Mainspring reassembly
  • Trigger action problem areas shown and the corrections explained
  • Grip replacement and final assembly
  • Magazine reassembly and testing
  • Feeding and firing cycle shown and explained
  • Final thoughts


  • Spare parts to keep on hand
  • .380 ACP barrel
  • Extended magazine release
  • Summary

If you noticed how often the terms explanation and demonstration are used, you may be getting some idea of why this course is necessary for any Makarov owner, or someone who intends to be.

How much does your Professional Course cost? The answer can be found in our intro pack. We recommend to anyone considering our Professional Course that they get the Introduction to Gunsmithing Packet as this packet includes a video with a sample gunsmithing lesson. It also includes an Enrollment Form that lists the costs of each Course level available as well as the material covered in each level.

Do I have to pay $7 s/h on each retail video? No, we discount shipping on multiple video orders. The new website calculates shipping based on weight and destination. In most cases, the actual shipping is less than listed in the catalog.

Is there a time limit to complete your course? No, our course is self-paced. As you complete sections of the course and submit your tests, we provide certification of completion for that portion of the course.

Can I become certified by taking your retail courses? Answers vary. If you are intending to purchase all the videos in our Law Enforcement Armorer's Course, for example, as long as you buy the test separately you can obtain a Certification as a Law Enforcement Armorer once you complete the testing successfully. Otherwise you would need to purchase one of our certified professional courses in order to obtain a profession Gunsmithing certificate.

What does your Professional Gunsmithing Course Introductory Lesson cover?The Introductory Lesson is one hour and includes complete information on how to get started Gunsmithing. You will also learn how to insure reliable auto-pistol feeding and how to prevent jams, checking and adjusting "range" on Smith and Wesson revolvers, how a gas system works on a Colt AR-15, AR-7 trigger repairs, timing and understanding cartridge stops of a Remington 870 and much more! 

Are your Courses guaranteed? Yes! The American Gunsmithing Institute is proud to offer a 100%, "Bulletproof Guarantee." We are so sure of the quality of our Courses and products that you may return any item purchased directly from AGI for a full refund (less shipping) for up to 90 days after purchase date. Defective DVDs and videos will be replaced for up to 1 year. The only question we will ask is: "How did we fail you?"

Does AGI offer other Certified Courses aside from the Professional Gunsmithing Course? Yes. We also offer a Certified Machine Shop Course, complete with Lathe, Mill and general Machine Shop instruction. Additionally AGI offers a Certified Welding Course and a Certified Locksmithing Course.

What do the Disassembly/Reassembly Courses cover? AGI offers D/R Courses that clearly demonstrate the complete process of disassembly and reassembly step-by-step. The Courses use close-up views to provide comprehensive instruction. Each DVD Video Manual covers one specific model or family of firearms and is indexed to help the user quickly find the information that they are looking for. At the price of only $19.97 each (plus s/h), these video manuals are must have support information for anyone who owns one of these firearms.  

What do the Armorer's Courses cover?AGI's Armorer's Courses teach you how to disassemble, maintain, repair and reassemble your choice of the 51 guns featured. These videos are packed with exclusive information and are equal to a complete Factory Armorer's Course! While our Disassembly/Reassembly Courses contain invaluable information, our Armorer's Courses contain so much more. Master Gunsmith and AGI Instructor Robert "Bob" Dunlap explains design and function using exclusive factory cutaway firearm models, giving you close-up details of the internal functions you would not otherwise be able to see. All AGI Armorer's Course DVDs include a FREE printable schematic!    

Are your Instructors experienced in their fields? Absolutely. Master Gunsmith and AGI Senior Instructor Robert "Bob" Dunlap is a widely respected authority in the firearm industry and spent over 35 years as the senior instructor at Lassen College's internationally known Gunsmithing School. Master Gunsmith Gene Shuey is a world class custom gun builder, former world class competitive shooter and current trainer specializing in 1911 and Glock pistols, IPSC limited and open class guns, and high-end custom rifles. Darrell Holland is a well known custom rifle builder, writer and lecturer who is always inventing new performance shooting products. Ken Brooks is a graduate of the renowned Gunsmithing program at Lassen College and continues his journey by working full time for Bob Dunlap. Gene Kelly is the President of AGI and the Gun Club of America. He graduated from Lassen College's Gunsmithing program and worked as a Professional Gunsmith prior to founding AGI. T.R. Graham is a NRA Certified Pistol Instructor and is a known authority, author and Gunsmith specializing in Glocks and other handguns. Master Armorer John Bush is an AGI Instructor and a consultant to manufacturers and importers of military firearms, and is certified as an Expert Witness in firearm cases.