MVD agent KardeN gives us another look into an elusive piece of Russian equipment, this time the Russian rotary GSh-18 pistol:
The box it came in is very plain, and lacks a carry handle like most boxes pistols on the American market ship in:
Accessories are sparing, just a cleaning rod, spare magazine, magazine loader (which, as KardeN points out, is absolutely necessary to load the mag), and an extra spring:
And of course, KardeN gives us a look at the guns internals as well:
Breaking down the upper yields us this:
And the frame:
The gun borrows some elements from other striker-fired pistols, like the trigger-block safety, and the striker-fired mechanism:
Sadly, the gun does not appear to be up to the standards of Western manufacture, despite being an innovative and promising design. The polymer quality, parts fit, and finish all leave much to be desired, as are evident from this rear view:
KardeN mentions, too, that the magazine is difficult to load past ten rounds, necessitating a magazine loading device:
The GSh-18 is a surpsingly large pistol, as these pictures comparing it to a PYa “Grach” handgun illustrate:
Finally, we can take a look at the high pressure ammunition the GSh-18 and other Russian pistols use, which are essentially armor piercing +P+ loads of 9x19mm Parabellum:
TFB friend Retiv graciously gives us the rundown of KardeN’s comments, as well as what his commenters think (my edits for clarity in brackets):
“- Light, especially without ammo.
– “peculiar” trigger – heavy and unpredictable.
– Recoil is forcing pistol muzzle to “jump” high
– Magazine lips design and impossibility of manual loading of more than ten rounds makes magazine loading an unpleasant task.
– The loading device has no place to attach sling to tie it. Otherwise, it is not difficult to lose …
All these difficulties with loading magazine suggests this scenario of use of the gun – fire two mags, and that forget about the gun.
– Because of the great efforts that are needed to load a mag with the help of the loading device, mag loading can be done only on hard surface/solid support, and it will be very difficult to load mags in any other position.
Of course, the situation with mags loading for pistol in combat is unlikely to happen, but sometimes the life of a military man presents such surprises …”
“The desire to carry it is lost because of such miracles [sarcasm, I assume]?
– Yes, it is lost.”
“- I cleaned it twice and both times lubricant was rust-colored …”
“It looks terrible. As if it was machined from billet with a rasp.
– There is some disharmony in how it looks.
– The second assumption have a real basis…”
“From domestic pistols the GSh-18 is probably the best, but compared to our foreign guns – stone age. -rant-
– As strange as it sounds, but I will say as folk said, “There is nobody there to [motivate] designers, manufacturers and officials. We don’t have normal competition and there is no concept of “Doing it for country”
“- Assigned resource – 4000 shots with very [hot] 7N31 bullets.– Glock is cheaper only abroad. It is 2 times more expensive than GSh here.There have been cases of premature death of Glocks from 7N21 bullets in units on the territory of the Russian Federation.”