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Semi-automatic pistol


Usually the TT pistols were issued to the officers

Caliber 7.62x25 mm
Weight (empty) 854 g
Length 195 mm
Barrel length 116 mm
Muzzle velocity 420 - 480 m/s
Magazine capacity 8 rounds
Sighting range 25 m
Range of effective fire more than 50 m


   The TT semi-automatic pistol was developed in 1930 by Fedor Tokarev. This pistol was named after the city it was developed and produced (Tula) and its designer (Tokarev), or TT for short. It was developed to meet requirements of the Red Army. In the late 1920s the Red Army issued a requirement for a powerful semi-automatic pistol, chambered for 7.63 mm Mauser round, that would replace the Nagant revolver and Mauser pistol. The Tokarev design competed against semi-automatic pistols, designed by Korovin and Prilukiy. New Russian designs also compared with Western designs, such as Browning, Luger and Walther. As a result Tokarev pistol was selected as a winner by the Red Army. Initial drawbacks were fixed and low-rate roduction of this pistol commenced in 1931. Full-scale production of an improved model commenced in 1933. Originally this pistol was produced in Tula. It was widely used during the World War II. After the war this pistol was also produced in Izhevsk and Kovrov cities. In 1951 this pistol was slightly improved to simplify production and maintenance. In 1952 it was replaced by the PM pistol. Production continued until 1954. By that time approximately 3 million of these pistols were produced in the Soviet Union.

   The TT has been widely exported to Soviet allies. Modified variants and clones of this pistol were produced in China, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Iraq, North Korea, Poland, Vietnam and Yugoslavia. Even though it is outdated, the TT is still used in more than 50 countries by military and law enforcement forces. It is still used by special forces of the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs. Variants of this pistol are still produced in some countries, but intended mainly for civilian market.

   The TT is a clone of the M1903 pistol, designed by the famous John Browning. This pistol was in service with the Russian Empire. M1093 pistols were ordered before the WWI and were used by the police. Also the TT has some of the internals of the Browning's M1911. However the TT is chambered for different cartridge. Also it was modified to simplify production.

   The TT is chambered for 7.62x25 mm ammunition. Some sources report that originally this pistol was planned to be chambered for 7.63x25 mm Mauser round. However a slightly different caliber was deliberately selected in order to make the new round incompatible with Western weapons. In case of war captured ammunition stocks would be useless for the enemy. Interesting fact though, that TT could use the Mauser 7.62x25 mm ammunition, but not vice versa.

   So essentially the TT is a clone of American pistol that is chambered for a modified German round. Eventually this Russian pistol proved to be highly successful. This weapon is still popular due to its ruggedness, reliability, low price, accuracy and penetration.

   The 7.62x25 mm round has a much higher muzzle velocity than the 9x19 mm Parabellum round. Between 1930s and 1950s it was the standard pistol and submachine gun round in Soviet Union and with its Warsaw Pact allies. It is worth noting that the soviets required their allies to use the same ammunition. So a number of pistols and submachine guns, chambered for 7.62x25 mm round emerged in Poland, Czechoslovakia, and some other countries.

   The TT fires standard ball rounds, tracer and armor-piercing incendiary rounds. It lacks stopping power, but makes up for with penetration and accuracy. In terms of penetration it outperforms most other pistols. It shoots-through a 15 cm wooden log. Also it penetrates from both sided army helmets and second class armor vests. It penetrates third class armor vest from one side. So only third+ class vests provide protection against these powerful rounds.

   Fixed sights were factory set at 25 meters. However the TT has a longer effective range. At the range of 50 meters the TT has an accuracy error in 15 centimeters, and it considered accurate.

   The original TT does not have a safety lock. It proved to be an unsafe weapon and should not be carried when loaded. Most of its variants, produced in other countries are fitted with a safety lock.

   The TT is flat and can be easily concealed. However there are some issued with ergonomics. It was a result of cost-cutting in manufacture.

   The TT is fed from a single stack magazine, that holds 8 rounds. At the time of its introduction it was adequate, however currently modern pistols come with 15 or even 20 round magazines.

   Numerous copies, variants and clones of the TT pistol were produced. Some of them are listed below. Some of the clones are chambered from 9x19 mm Parabellum ammunition.




   Type 54, Chinese copy of TT. Some of the Chinese versions are fitted with manual safeties;

   Type 68, a North Korean version of the TT;

   PW Wz.33, a Polish copy of the TT. It was produced between 1947 and 1959;

   TTC, a Romanian copy of the TT. It was produced well into the 1950s;

   Yugo M57, improved Yugoslavian variant. It has a 9-round capacity magazine.









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