Minebea PM-9

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Minebea PM-9
9mm機関拳銃 (8464077981).jpg
Minebea PM-9 with a loaded magazine.
Type Machine pistol
Place of origin Japan
Service history
In service 1990 – Present
Used by Japan
Production history
Designer Uziel Gal[1]
Designed 1948
Manufacturer Minebea Co.
Unit cost 2540$
Produced 1990 – Present
Specifications
Weight 2.8 kg / 6.2 lbs[2]
Length 399 mm / 15.7"[3]
Barrel length 120 mm / 4.7"[3]

Cartridge 9x19mm Parabellum
Action Blowback
Rate of fire 1100 RPM[2]
Effective firing range 100 m
Feed system 25-Round Magazine[2]
Sights Iron sights

The Minebea PM-9 Submachine Gun, known officially in the Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) as the 9mm Machine Pistol (9mm機関拳銃 Kyumiri Kikan Kenjū?)[2] or as the M9,[4] is a Japanese-made machine pistol. Based on the Israeli IMI Mini-Uzi, the PM-9 has the same telescoping bolt as the Mini-Uzi, but differs in its appearance, operational use and handling.

The JSDF uses the PM9 as its official submachine gun, although some of its special forces units now use other weapons. The 1st Airborne Brigade and the Western Army Infantry Regiment are the only special forces units in the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) known to be armed with the PM-9 as the brigade's main submachine gun.[5][6] The PM-9 is reported to be in use in the JGSDF's Special Forces Group.[7] The Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) uses it when conducting base security.[clarification needed][8]

History[edit]

1st Airborne Brigade paratroopers in a parade with PM-9s.

The PM-9[3] is produced by the Nippon Miniature Bearing Company, otherwise known as Minebea. The design is based mainly on the Mini-Uzi submachine gun.[9] It was adopted in 1999 for non-frontline forces such as vehicle drivers, artillery personnel, some of its special forces units,[10] and some commissioned officers who were given priority for better equipment.[11]

Though it has been the official submachine gun for more than a decade, as of 2009 JSDF officials are looking at a possible replacement, as it is planned to phase it out in the near future. One possible replacement is the Heckler & Koch MP5.[10] JSDF troops assigned to guard duty on both Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) and JASDF garrison bases had their PM-9s replaced with other high-performing submachine guns,[12] and the JGSDF will also eventually replace the PM-9.[13]

Features[edit]

The PM-9 differs in appearance from its Israeli counterpart in a few ways. A foregrip is mounted underneath the barrel of the PM-9 to aid fully automatic firing with a flash suppressor in place.[10] The weapon can also be modified to have a foldable stock, a detachable suppressor and a mounted reflex sight, though these modifications are most unlikely to be used in peacekeeping operations abroad, since such activities do not involve Japanese soldiers in combat situations.[14] The initial batches of PM-9s were first made with wooden pistol and foregrips, before they switched to use plastic grips on the current PM-9s in JSDF service.[15]

Adoption[edit]

There were some questions as to why the PM-9 was only adopted for JSDF use a decade ago, though the following were said[by whom?] to be reasons:[16]

  1. Minebea was able to create a quality weapon, as it also made the SIG Sauer P220 (Minebea P-9) under license.
  2. It was the only design that could be manufactured with Minebea's equipment.
  3. At the time of selection and adoption, the Uzi was highly regarded as an adequate weapon.

Although these reasons are quite valid,[citation needed] it was said[by whom?] that the reason why the PM-9 was adopted as the JSDF's main submachine gun is because of the high costs that would arise if they were to select the Heckler & Koch MP5 instead.[17]

References[edit]

  1. ^ As developer based on the IMI Mini-Uzi submachine gun
  2. ^ a b c d "9mm機関拳銃" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2008-08-29. 
  3. ^ a b c "9mm機関けん銃" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2008-08-29. [dead link]
  4. ^ "9mm機関拳銃" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2009-01-26. 
  5. ^ ミネベア 9ミリ機関けん銃 (in Japanese). Retrieved 2008-09-01. 
  6. ^ 9㎜機関拳銃 (in Japanese). Retrieved 2009-01-13. 
  7. ^ 陸上自衛隊唯一の特殊部隊 特殊作戦群の解説 (in Japanese). Archived from the original on 2012-11-28. Retrieved 2012-11-28. 
  8. ^ 9mm機関拳銃 (in Japanese). Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  9. ^ 演習場で大活躍!自衛隊の火器(本物) (in Japanese). Retrieved 2008-09-02. 
  10. ^ a b c "Minebea M-9" (in Japanese).  Retrieved on August 29, 2008.
  11. ^ 自衛隊装備品倉庫 (in Japanese). Retrieved 2008-09-02. 
  12. ^ "ミネベア 9mm機関けん銃" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2008-09-01. 
  13. ^ "ミネベア工業9mm機関け銃" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2008-09-02. 
  14. ^ "Translated page on modified Minebea PM-9 submachine gun". Retrieved 2008-09-01. 
  15. ^ "9mm機関けん銃と参考文献の紹介". Archived from the original on 2007-03-19. Retrieved 2009-11-04. 
  16. ^ "9mm機関けん銃 - 考え直して下さい-" (in Japanese). Retrieved 2008-09-01. 
  17. ^ "9mm機関けん銃について思うこと". Archived from the original on 2007-08-24. Retrieved 2009-11-04. 

External links[edit]