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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Here's an interesting variant I picked up yesterday. It's a Romanian Vz-24 built in Czechoslovakia under German occupation. The rifle had a standard Czech proofed Vz-24 bolt in it, but wear on the stock beneath the bolt handle indicated that the rifle previously was used with a bent bolt, so I replaced the Czech straight handled bolt with a spare K98k bolt I've had sitting around. The sear appears to have been arsenal modifed to prevent the bolt safety from being engaged, I checked several bolts and none of them will go on safe when installed in this rifle.

The muzzle end of the barrel shows finish wear consistent with the rifle being used and/or carried extensively with a bayonet attached. The bayonet I've got is a 945 coded example with frog stud serial number prefix of "BR". I've been told the 945 is a German code used on some Romanian contract bayonets so it's a good mate to this rifle. Not "perfect", but it works.

The Cugir proofs on the right side of the receiver ring and barrel collar are very deep, especially the one on the barrel collar.

Has anyone else seen a Romanian Vz-24 contract rifle with an arsenal modified sear?

Thanks in advance for any information and/or speculation.

Here's the photos:

right-side.jpg

left-side.jpg
receiver-ring.jpg
siderail.jpg
modified_sear.jpg
stock_bolt_wear.jpg
Cugir_proofs.jpg
stock_sernos.jpg
frog_stud_serno.jpg
bayonet-wear-right.jpg
 

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Romania was never occupied by Germany, correct. The bolt that came in the rifle was the right type; the K98k bolt is not. The 945 bayonet was made for German use. The BR scabbard was made for Romanian use. Romania might have picked up the 945 bayonet after Germans left it in Romania. It looks like it might have been rebuilt by Romania post WWII.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
My wording for the title was poor, I'll correct that. What I meant was that the rifle was produced for Romania in German occupied Czechoslovakia. The straight handled Czech bolt would be "more correct" as issued for the rifle, but the stock wear shows that a K98 type bent bolt was with the stock for some time, so it seemed appropriate to put one back. Obviously either one could be used, and frequently were judging from the number of Vz-24's found with K98k bolts in them. I have several other Czech variants that were German modified that have K98k bolts in them.

The 945 bayonet is a post-war Romanian rework from what I've been told previously. The combinations of parts were of no concern during refurbishment efforts, as long as they fit and worked. I like it this way.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Can anyone tell me anything about those Cugir proofs on the barrel and receiver? This is the first wartime Romanian contract Vz-24 I've owned, so I have no basis for comparison on the proofs.
 

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Can anyone tell me anything about those Cugir proofs on the barrel and receiver? This is the first wartime Romanian contract Vz-24 I've owned, so I have no basis for comparison on the proofs.
The firing proof mark is on the right side of the receiver ring; it does not appear to be as deep as the other two. The other markings are stamped much more deeply than any I have seen before - it makes me think of some kind of overpowered hydraulic punch tool - or a giant hammer.

Bill
 

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Low serial number XR series was made in October 1941. The XR was the last series to be made. For unknown reason, the YR series was made before the XR (but also in 1941). The 1941 rifles probably never had crests. Both series were made at Považská Bystrica in Slovakia, as Brno was busy with the German contracts. The circle CM is the Romanian acceptance mark for rifles from Považská Bystrica. "CM" probably stands for Comisia Militara (the Romanian arms acceptance commission), not Copșa Mică, since gun manufacture was done at Cugir, not Copșa Mică, a separate town.

In late 1940, some bayonets with the German code "945", a code normally used only for German contract weapons, were diverted to the Romanian contract. Note the OP bayonet has a muzzle ring, a feature not found on German bayonets. There are "945" coded vz24 style bayonets without the muzzle ring, and those did go to the Germans.
 

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Low serial number XR series was made in October 1941. The XR was the last series to be made. For unknown reason, the YR series was made before the XR (but also in 1941). The 1941 rifles probably never had crests. Both series were made at Považská Bystrica in Slovakia, as Brno was busy with the German contracts. The circle CM is the Romanian acceptance mark for rifles from Považská Bystrica. "CM" probably stands for Comisia Militara (the Romanian arms acceptance commission), not Copșa Mică, since gun manufacture was done at Cugir, not Copșa Mică, a separate town.

In late 1940, some bayonets with the German code "945", a code normally used only for German contract weapons, were diverted to the Romanian contract. Note the OP bayonet has a muzzle ring, a feature not found on German bayonets. There are "945" coded vz24 style bayonets without the muzzle ring, and those did go to the Germans.
You are so right about the muzzle ring. I should have caught that.

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks all for the excellent information! This rifle turned out to be more than I thought it was, and your information regarding the bayonet, manufacture timeframe and markings on the rifle only add to my interest in it overall. I find it amazing that I've had the bayonet for 15-20 years, and have finally acquired a rifle that it's correct for.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
So these were built in German occupied Czechoslovia but proofed at Cugir in Romania, or Romanian proofed at Bystrica?
 

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Metall parts of rifle, reciever was made in Povazska Bystrica in independent Slovakia in II.plant of WWBruenn, Smid says is October 1941 it was the plan to made it, in reality this rifle were not delivered prior may 1942 to Romania, because Slovakia stopped the export prior proper paying. Most real the reciever was stamped but the crest or date was removed by refurbish, the bayonet is already a romanian rework with new grips and reblueing, the propet bayonet should be a slovakian made doubble circle Z possible with cm proof, and XR marked on pommel, in a Brno Z one circle scabbard.Anyway bring it to origin condition is impossible.BR is a second romanian contract scabbard, 945 bayonets were used in Brno contract pieces.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks Andy! The bayonet is "correct enough" anyway, it's the ONLY 945 marked example I've ever seen.
 

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Thanks Andy! The bayonet is "correct enough" anyway, it's the ONLY 945 marked example I've ever seen.
Your bayonet is definitely Romanian and that is good enough. The chance of finding the one bayonet with s/n matching your rifle is 1 in 1,000,000,000,000 VZ24 bayonets.

As ryg said:
"In late 1940, some bayonets with the German code "945", a code normally used only for German contract weapons, were diverted to the Romanian contract. Note the OP bayonet has a muzzle ring, a feature not found on German bayonets. There are "945" coded vz24 style bayonets without the muzzle ring, and those did go to the Germans."
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Your bayonet is definitely Romanian and that is good enough. The chance of finding the one bayonet with s/n matching your rifle is 1 in 1,000,000,000,000 VZ24 bayonets.

As ryg said:
"In late 1940, some bayonets with the German code "945", a code normally used only for German contract weapons, were diverted to the Romanian contract. Note the OP bayonet has a muzzle ring, a feature not found on German bayonets. There are "945" coded vz24 style bayonets without the muzzle ring, and those did go to the Germans."
The wealth of information on these forums is truly amazing. Just 2 days after picking it up, I know the arsenal, month and year of it's manufacture, and miraculously have a Romanian contract bayonet for it that I've had for nearly 20 years. Somebody PINCH me! 🤣
 

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I have a couple of bayonets that are waiting for rifles. Unfortunately, the rifles are very uncommon and tend to be too expensive for me when they show up. I keep watching for them.

I have been known to find some guns that are either unidentified or misidentified - and cheap! My specialty.

Bill
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
This Vz-24 is the first true Romanian contract rifle produced in German occupied Czechoslovakia I've ever owned. I have several pre-war contract rifles, specifically an "E" prefix 1937 crested example that probably went to Romania. The others have all been postwar Czech refurbs with new stocks, completely refinished with no wartime history remaining. I've never seen one with Cugir firing proofs like this one has. I also don't have any others with this siderail variation. So I'm VERY happy to have added it to the collection, it was on a whim more than anything else. I too have had some nice unexpected pickups over the years, many of which I still have. I look for the oddballs, and sometimes it pays off.

UPDATED for clarification
 

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You have a nice one. All of the Romanian VZ24 rifles were wartime produced. Crests were later scrubbed. Some were rebuilt in Romania and some of those had new stocks. The new stocks are pretty but I prefer the originals.

The photos show an original stock first and a replacement stock second. Both rifles have a partially scrubbed crest.

3745208


3745209


3745210


3745211
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
I need to watch how I'm wording my posts, I've been really busy at work so distracted by that. I know all Romanian Vz's were wartime built, what I meant was a wartime Romanian contract rifle versus the Czech rifles scrubbed, reblued and refitted to new stocks after the war by Romania. I'll edit the above to make my intent clearer.

Thanks for sharing your photos, I've seen the lower crest photo before. Based on your photo, I believe that my example also had the same crest, if you examine the receiver photo on my rifle, there appears to be 2 faint remnants of leaf tips towards the right side.

Let me know if you see the same... thanks again!
 
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