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Discussion Starter #1
I got very little information upon receiving this rifle, and I'll admit I'm rather new to all this, but I believe it to be a VZ.24 chambered in 8mm mauser. I can't find much information on D prefixed serial numbers, and am not sure what a lot of the markings mean on the receiver. Any ideas on what I've got on my hands?

On to the problems, it doesn't seem to fire. I'm not sure if this is due to my firing pin tip being worn down to non use, or it happened to be converted, or I'm just using the wrong round? Also when attempting to chamber and eject a round the extractor on my bolt has a hard time grabbing the rim of the round. It also is near impossible to get it to the chamber using the bolt, as it can't seem to get the right angle for entry, but once found seems to fit comfortably. I was attempting this with PPU 198gr FMJBT 8mm mauser. Is this possibly just a odd fitting round or is this quite the mismatched rifle? Also the Any thoughts would be appreciated, thanks.

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I am not going to venture much other than to say that is a really nice looking Czech rifle. Don't see many like that. Have you taken the bolt completely apart and cleaned it well? I suspect it is full of grease. I suspect you might find a big gooey gob of slop in the firing pin spring among other places. Next up will be some of the guys who really know Czech mausers. You are in the right place. Enjoy that one.

By the way, they are going to ask you for more photos so get ready.
 

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Platinum Bullet Member and Certified Curmudgeon
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The D prefix s/n and the early type of crest show that you have a VZ23 rifle. It is in a VZ24 stock. The handguard has been shortened on the front, possibly because the front band is incorrect. It lacks the lip on the rear to retain the handguard and the marking on it looks to be Spanish.

It sounds like you are dropping a cartridge on top of the follower and trying to feed it. You need to first put the cartridge in the magazine (by pushing down on the cartridge).

As said, disassemble your bolt, then clean and oil it.

Your rifle looks to be reblued and the stock refinished, which makes it pretty but detracts from value.

Keep watching for a VZ23 stock. They are very hard to find.

See the index in the first post at the URL below to find photos of a VZ23 rifle in the correct stock. The rifle will be under the letter "Z" in the index.

ZB VZ23a Czechoslovak short rifle, 7.92X57, 1924
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you very much Dallased and Geladen for your compliments and informative information. Its nice to finally have a decisive statement on what it is.
I've disassembled the bolt a few times before, and cleaned it (prior to attempted test firing) and it was in surprising clean condition. I'm missing the push button to aid disassembly,
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and the tip of the firing pin appears flattened. But here are a few photos to see for yourselves.



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Also, when attempting to chamber a round previously I loaded the magazine fully, then attempted to chamber the round, finding difficulty in the movement once pulling the round from the mag. The extractor grabs the rim of the round, but I'm thinking the mag spring isn't giving enough upward pressure to push the round up between the extractor and bolt.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Also I'm guessing the previous owner didn't have a soft wood block or rubber pad to disassemble the bolt completely, as my stock doesn't have the hole for it. Hence the crunched tip of the firing pin. I've drawn some blood attempting to not use the tip as the focal point. Haha.
 

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It looks like your firing pin tip is broken off and your extractor is probably bad. With the spring lock missing, you would be ahead to just get a new bolt. Any undamaged VZ24 bolt would do, but s/n prefix D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, and M are VZ23 bolts (early D prefix could be VZ98/22 but they are the same anyway. Actually, M prefix is VZ23a but the only difference is the rear sight. There was a later D prefix about 1937 for export VZ24 rifles; those s/n went up to more than four digits. Those were standard VZ24 bolts.

The spring lock on the bolt is important, as it prevents the bolt sleeve from rotating. The dust cover on a Manchurian Type 13 rifle does the same thing. On those the dust cover is often missing and it is easy to jam the bolt if the bolt sleeve rotates and decocks when the bolt is open.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I've been looking for VZ.23/VZ.24 bolts for a few days now as a possible solution to my problem. I've yet to find much success, and the same goes for the individual parts to repair my current bolt. Do you have any sites you tend to frequent for parts or surplus gear?
 

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I've been looking for VZ.23/VZ.24 bolts for a few days now as a possible solution to my problem. I've yet to find much success, and the same goes for the individual parts to repair my current bolt. Do you have any sites you tend to frequent for parts or surplus gear?
gunbroker.com
ebay.com
gunpartscorp.com
 

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I personally tend to Vz98/22 metall parts, the buttstock is not correct. The bolt is missmatch Vz.24 with various parts.
 

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I personally tend to Vz98/22 metall parts, the buttstock is not correct. The bolt is missmatch Vz.24 with various parts.
Andy is correct as usual (as always?) on this being a VZ98/22 receiver. Both VZ98/22 long rifles and VZ23 short rifles were made in the D block. There is a difference between the VZ98/22 and the VZ23 crests (see photos).

But - the very first D block VZ23 rifles might well have been made using the VZ98/22 type crests. So, we need to know both the full s/n on the receiver and the full s/n on the barrel to figure this out (photos please). We know the barrel is short, for a VZ23. If both receiver and barrel s/n are the same and look to be original, this might just be an early VZ23 receiver with the VZ98/22 type crest. Or, otherwise it might be a VZ98/22 receiver used to assemble a parts rifle (probably in the US) that just happens to look like a VZ23 in a VZ24 stock.

Note that Andy had this all figured out already, as he said "I personally tend to Vz98/22 metall parts".

It may be that the crest was changed because the ZB legal name was changed - and this just happened to be about the time of changing from VZ98/22 to the VZ23 rifles. Andy has the great advantage of understanding the Czech language.

VZ98/22 crest
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VZ23 crest
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I agree, Spanish M43 stock, handguard, and bands. The photos do not show whether or not it has a marking disk which would indicate a VZ24 stock, but I already mentioned the Spanish marking on the front band. I looked again and noticed the hole in the bayonet lug for the bayonet adapter which screams "Spanish M1943".

This is a reminder of why I should never answer questions until after full length photos of both sides of a rifle are posted.

Spanish M1943
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3765372
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Rifle disassembled and photos taken, let me know if you need any better/different angles or shots. Thank you both Bill and Andy for the time and effort put into this.
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Another post coming shortly with barrel and receiver close ups.
Thanks again, Kevin.
 

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The barrel lacks the s/n that it should have if original. I'm sorry to say it looks like a parts rifle with a probable VZ98/22 receiver. I say probable because I am not sure if the first few VZ23 rifles had the VZ23 type crest or the old VZ98/22 type crest. Below are the markings on some D prefix rifles.

VZ98/22 - D2024 - E (circle lion) 23
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VZ98/22 - D9930 - E (circle lion) 23
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VZ23 - D7223 - E (circle lion) 23
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1938 export VZ24 - D5094 - 1938 crest - no acceptance mark
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1938 export VZ24 - D9344 - lion crest - no acceptance mark
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