I recently saw that the BATF had clarified that they considered the TT-33 pistol to be C&R qualified. I was excited, as I had always wanted one and now had a chance to have the Brown Truck O’ Happiness deliver one right to my door.
I ordered one from AIM, as their pistols were advertised as “refinished”.
Their ad said:
“Tokarev-TTC Romanian TT-33 7.62×25 Pistol
Originally designed by the Russians as the Soviets standard service pistol for WWII, these TT-33 Tokarev pistols were manufactured by Romania during the Cold war. They share a similar design to John Browning’s 1911 automatic pistol. Refinished to Excellent condition. Include a total of 2 original 7 round magazines.”
Sounded just like what I wanted. And $209 sounded like a fair price. I also ordered a case of 1,224 rounds of surplus 7.62 X 25 Romanian ammo, as I was getting a little low. A couple of days later, I was in business.
Here it is in the box it came in.
It was very oily, but other than that, it looked great.
The extra mag had about a pound of Cosmoline in it, but I would clean it all up with Mineral Spirits.
We found a great description on how to disassemble the pistol.
This pistol has a safety that was added to meet import restrictions.
The originals did not have a safety lever and depended on a half-cock as a safety.
We started by making sure the pistol was unloaded and started the break-down, per the instructions.
I then removed the front barrel bushing, which is very difficult to do, as the spring is under a lot of pressure.
You then have to slide back a clip that holds the slide stop from the right side.
Once apart, the parts show a 1911-like linage.
When I get a milsurp gun with lots of Cosmoline or oil on it, I find that a bath in mineral spirits does wonders at cleaning it up.
I placed that parts in a plastic pan and get the brush and mineral spirits to work.
I use a brush and just scrub the parts.
It cleaned right up with no problem.
After drying the parts completely, I blew the parts off and sprayed them with WD-40 and wiped them down again.
Then I started to put them back together.
I lubed where needed and reassembled the pistol.
I applied grease to the rails, as I find grease stays where you put it better than oil on a semi-auto pistol.
It cleaned-up really nicely.
It was time to go to the range.
The pistol had “smaller” grips than some semi-autos.
It looks like it would be uncomfortably small.
But it fits the hand well and it turned out to have a really excellent trigger.
The sights are plenty large to use well.
To our great surprise, it shot really great.
It was loud, but the recoil wasn’t too bad at all. And, most amazingly, it shot small groups to point of aim.
It is a joy to shoot.
We can’t help but to compare it to the other popular type of C&R pistol in this caliber, the CZ-52. Here they are together.
They are both 7.62 X 25, and the Romanian milsurp ammo is corrosive.
Be sure to clean the pistol barrel with water after shooting. The difference in the pistols is surprising.
The T-33 had much less recoil and muzzle blast than the CZ-52. And the better sights and much better trigger made shooting it accurately much easier.
We were both surprised at the big difference in these areas.
Here I am shooting the pistol.
It functioned 100% without any gunsmithing at all.
That’s a neat photo, as the slide isn’t locked back, it is just in recoil and ejecting the empty case.
Tman gives it a run.
We shot targets and were very pleased with the tight groups we shot.
You can see that the recoil is sharp, but it is not painful.
I am very happy with this pistol and Tman says he is so impressed with how well it shot that he is going to get one for himself.
1. Now classified as C&R, these pistols are a bargain at around $200.
2. It has been refinished with a very nice bluing and finish.
3. The trigger is excellent for a milsurp pistol.
4. It shot 100% reliably and shot very nice groups.
5. The milsurp ammo is corrosive, so clean accordingly.
6. It is a pleasure to shoot.
7. You need one.