7.62x25mm Tokarev Ammunition

7.62x25mm Tokarev ammunition.

7.62x25mm Tokarev cartridge, brass case and FMJ bullet.

Background

The 7.62x25mm Tokarev cartridge is a bottle-necked pistol cartridge designed in the Soviet Union and widely used in the USSR and Soviet satellite states. It is effectively a more powerful Soviet version of the 7.63x25 Mauser cartridge.

The two are physically very similar and many weapons can chamber both. However, the significantly higher power of the 7.62x25mm Tokarev will likely lead to weapon damage and user injury. The Czech version is loaded to 25% higher pressure yet, leading to significantly higher velocity and energy but also to greater danger if used in weapons not designed for it! The Czech ammunition can safely be used in your sturdy CZ-52 but it must not be used in weapons not specifically designed for it

The Starline Brass site has this warning for reloaders:
This case [the 7.62x25mm Tokarev] is very similar, except for the difference in length, to the .30 Mauser. Due to higher operating pressures, if the .30 Mauser cases are fired with hotter 7.62x25 loads in the CZ-52, it will tear the neck off some cases. 30 Mauser O.A.L. is .980" to .985" while 7.62x25 O.A.L. is .958" to .962".

Comparison to other common rounds

Below are three 7.62mm cartridges used by Warsaw Pact firearms: the 7.62x25mm Tokarev, the 7.62x39mm rifle cartridge used in the SKS 45 (Самозарядный карабин системы Симонова) and the AK-47 Калашникова rifles, and the 7.62x54R (rimmed) cartridge used in the Mosin-Nagant rifle (Винтовка Мосина).

The second picture shows some common handgun cartridges, including the 7.62x25mm Tokarev.

Common user reports are that the recoil, report, and muzzle flash of a 7.62x25mm Tokarev cartridge are similar to those of a .357 SIG. The unusually loud report and prominent muzzle flash can be surprising. This round can perform more like a small rifle cartridge than a typical pistol cartridge.

7.62x25mm Tokarev, 7.62x39mm, 7.62x52R cartridges.

Left: 7.62x25mm Tokarev
Center: 7.62x39mm
Right: 7.62x54R

7.62x25mm Tokarev Cartridge Specifications

Bullet Diameter 7.8 mm 0.31"
Neck Diameter 8.4 mm 0.33"
Shoulder Diameter 9.4 mm 0.37"
Base Diameter 9.7 mm 0.38"
Rim Diameter 9.9 mm 0.39"
Rim Thickness 1.3 mm 0.051"
Case Length 25 mm 0.98"
Primer Berdan or Boxer
Romanian surplus 7.62x25mm Tokarev ammunition.

Typical packaging of Romanian 7.62x25mm Tokarev cartridges.
Cartuşe Pentru Pistolet.
Cheap, but corrosive!

7.62x25mm Tokarev Ballistic Performance

Bullet weight & type Velocity Energy
5.5 g (85 gr), JHP 376 m/s 1,230 ft/s 390 J 290 ft-lb
5.8 g (90 gr), FMJ 409 m/s 1,340 ft/s 488 J 360 ft-lb
5.5 g (85 gr), FMJ
"Czech Load"
500 m/s 1,640 ft/s 688 J 512 ft-lb
7.62x25mm Tokarev ammunition, Romanian headstamp.

Headstamp of Romanian 7.62x25mm Tokarev cartridge. "22 / 83" in this case.

The "Czech Load" as it's known is suitable for use only in handguns specially designed for the higher pressure such as the CZ-52.

Some reloading experimenters have custom-loaded 7.62x25mm cartridges with sabot rounds using 3.6 gram (55 grain) .22 caliber bullets, obtaining rifle-like muzzle velocities in excess of 670 m/s (2200 ft/s). That would correspond to kinetic energy of 808 J (601 ft-lb).

CZ-52 and TT-33 (Romanian TTC) 7.62x25mm pistols.

CZ-52 and TT-33 (Romanian TTC) 7.62x25mm pistols.

Weapons chambered in 7.62x25mm Tokarev

Pistols

Submachine guns