New Front sight for Polish P64 service pistol

Discussion in 'DIY Projects' started by superc, Feb 28, 2019.

  1. superc

    superc Active Member

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    I have a few Cold War era Polish P64 service pistols, they were manufactured at the Radom factory in the 1960s and 70s. Caliber 9mm x18mm (Makarov)

    They are not Makarov pistols although they use the same cartridge. They are smaller pistols. Basically they are a communist copy of the Walther PPK, but in a beefier caliber (9mmx18mm Makarov) than Walther ever thought of. They have a safety that both drops the hammer and also totally blocks the firing pin. A double or single action mechanism, but marked by a very stiff double action pull from the factory. They use the same ammunition as the Soviet Makarov, but in a smaller package.

    They are very reliable. Being smaller than many service pistols just makes them a better concealed carry pistol. Amongst other failings they have some of the worse sights of any service pistol. The front sight is smaller than the original sights of a 1911, maybe about the same size of the Colt 1903. Although they have a decent single action pull, their double action pull is often over 22 pounds. A replacement spring pack from Wolff is pretty much a must do for one of these pistols. All in all they were pretty good pistols for the 1960s and 70s, but a little dated by today's standards.

    I decided to help one of mine be a little more modern. I swapped out the trigger spring to lighten the double action pull, I swapped out the grips for more snazzy wooden ones, I replaced the front sight with a fiber optic (the color can be changed as desired) one from Hi-Viz. I extended the magazine release for easier access.

    After looking at a lot of fiber optic front sights from various makers I chose the Hi Viz Spark III Shotgun sight as the best possible choice for this pistol. It is low in profile and of a diameter that meshes well with the existing rear sight.

    To install it I first ground off the factory front sight. Then at the appropriate location I drilled a hole with a #31 drill bit, then I tapped that for a #6-48 bolt. I then (using my radiator since it is winter time) heated the slide to about 130 Fahrenheit, then using G96 cold blue blued it. When that cured I did so again (i.e., 2 coats). Then I installed the Hi Viz assembly. I was going to just Loctite it, but I decided something more permanent would remove all chance of the Hi Viz assembly unscrewing and departing under recoil. I extended the wire of my Mig welder and using the Mig tack welded the sight screw in place on the underside of the slide.

    Here are some comparison photos and what the new sight picture looks like.
     

    Attached Files:

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  2. Ingramite

    Ingramite Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Beautiful work.
    They are great pistols.
     
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  3. towboater

    towboater Well-Known Member

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    Now thats a sight picture. Awesome work.
     
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  4. EclecticShooter

    EclecticShooter Well-Known Member

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    Nice. I collect Eastern European handguns and the P64 is a good piece.
     
  5. superc

    superc Active Member

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    With the new added on modification of a P83 pistol magazine to fit into a P64 pistol thereby giving it 8 shots in the magazine, I feel they become very nice pistols.