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Silenced pistol


The PSS silenced pistol lacks silencer but instead used noiseless ammunition

Country of origin Soviet Union
Entered service 1983
Caliber 7.62x42 mm SP-4
Weight (empty) 700 g
Weight (loaded) 850 g
Length 170 mm
Barrel length 35 mm
Muzzle velocity 200 m/s
Muzzle energy 190 Joules
Magazine capacity 6 rounds
Sighting range 50 m
Range of effective fire 25 m


   The PSS was developed during the late 1970s and early 1980s to replace the older PB silenced pistol. Sometimes it is referred as the Vul. It was adopted by the Soviet Army and KGB in 1983. This silenced pistol was issued to special forces, reconnaissance units and KGB operatives. Currently it is still used by elite units of the Russian armed forces and special units of law enforcement forces. The PSS was never exported outside the Soviet Union. However it might be in service with some former Soviet republics.

   Unlike most silenced pistols the PSS has compact dimensions. It lacks silencer, but instead uses a special noiseless ammunition.

   The PSS is chambered for a special 7.62x42mm SP-4 ammunition. The cartridge has an integrated silencing feature. It has a gas-sealing piston, that pushes the bullet. Once the bullet is away all powder gasses are locked within the strengthened case. As a result the PSS is much more silent than most conventional pistols with sound suppressors. On the downside this ammunition is of relatively low power. The SP-4 ammunition lacks penetration comparing with standard pistol ammunition. Its effective range is only 25 meters. At a range of 20 meters it penetrates a steel army helmet.

   It is worth noting that special noiseless ammunition of generally similar design was used in the Soviet Union since around 1970s.

   Also the PSS silenced pistol has special design, that slows down the slide on the final stages of movement in order not to clang. It was a great improvement over the older PB silenced pistol with suppressor, that had significant sound reduction, but generated significant amount of noise by the clank of the slide.

   This pistol has a double-action trigger. A manual safety switch is mounted on the slide.

   It is fed from a single stack magazine, that holds 6 rounds.

    This pistol has simple iron sights. Sighting range is 50 meters. Range of effective fire is limited to 25 meters.

   It is easy to conceal this pistol due to its compact dimensions.

   A couple of years ago a new PSS-2 silenced pistol was developed in Russia. It is based on the original PSS, but has some features of the SR-1M pistol and some improvements. It is uses newly developed SP-16 noiseless ammunition. The PSS-2 was adopted by the Russian FSB security agency in 2011.






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