The GSh-18 (Gryazev-Shipunov, 18-rounds, ГШ-18, GRAU index 6P54) is a Russian pistol.
History[edit | edit source]
The brainchild of two Russian men, Vasiliy Petrovich Gryazev and Arkady Georgievich Shipunov, the pistol was created over a period of two years from 1998 to 2000, though a possibility of a new Russian service pistol to use the ubiquitous 9×19mm Parabellum bullet had been in the works since 1993. Both men were involved in the Grach competition after Gryazev had finished work on the P-96 pistol. The pistol was then designed in 1999, with the first prototypes being ready by 2000, and after which, were submitted to tests and trials. The competition eventually ended up with the MP-443 Grach winning.
Various modifications to the design were made during the progress of the trials, until the final design was created in 2001. The pistol is seeing limited service in Russia, and is being used by the Russian Federal Bailiffs Service and by the Prosecutor's Office.
Design Details[edit | edit source]
This rotating barrel short recoil-operated pistol didn't always have the action it had; the original prototypes had two different actions, one similar to the one used by the Walther P38, and another similar to the one used by the TT pistol.
Ten locking lugs are spaced equally around the cold-forged barrel. This large locking surface area results in a very strong lockup, which makes the GSh-18 suitable for high-velocity loads. In addition to having a rotating barrel, the GSh-18 has a pre-set striker. Because of the action that the GSh-18 uses, this may help to reduce the size of the weapon, although it is noted that this sort of advantage is very rarely exploited.
The GSh-18 uses cutting edge manufacturing technology, where injection molding, stamping and welding are very heavily used in the manufacturing of the pistol, which helps to reduce man labor. However, due to its manufacturing technology, the cost of both manufacturing and equipment usage is rather high; in fact, the manufacturing cost of the GSh-18 is much higher than that of the MP-443 Grach.
The pistol is designed to be field-stripped without the use of tools. The GSh-18 comes with a whopping four safeties; one disables the trigger completely, another is a Glock-styled trigger safety, and two more auxiliary safeties engage when the barrel is not fully locked in place. One of those auxiliary safeties disconnects the sear, and the other disables the firing pin from hitting the bullet's primer.
Ammunition[edit | edit source]
The GSh-18 is able to use a wide variety of 9×19mm Parabellum bullets, and even has the capability to take the 7N21 and 7N31 overpressure variants of the cartridge. The GSh-18 uses the 7N31 overpressure round as standard.
Variants[edit | edit source]
- GSh-18 Tactical
Updated variant with the ability to fit a silencer. Comes equipped with a Picatinny rail.
- GSh-18 Sport (ГШ-18С Спорт)
Civilian variant with a modified trigger and firing pin. Comes standard with a 10-round magazine.
- GSh-18 Sport 2 (ГШ-18С Спорт 2)
Identical to the GSh-18 Sport, but comes standard with a 18-round magazine.
Prototype non-lethal variant firing .45 Rubber bullets from a 7-round magazine. Due to legislation changes, the GSh-18T was shelved.