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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I typically don't do this, but I threw in a bid on an item that was somewhat low in my opinion. Well, I won it, and I'm not 100% sure what it is.

I had initially seen it, saw it was chambered in 7mm (Mauser presumably) and assumed it to be one of the South American contract rifles. Figured it would fit well in the collection and threw in a bid. Well, curiosity is killing me now. I haven't yet gotten the thing, but was curious to know what you all thought it may be.

Looking at my one reference book on the subject, Mauser Military Rifles of the World by Robert Ball, I think what I have here is a Brazilian VZ 24 contract rifle from 1930. 15,000 were made in what is listed as "7mm". The chart on page 122 has the following (limited) information:

Although marked "VZ24" on its side rail. This rifle is actually a lightened VZ 24 with a turned down bolt handle and a grasping recess. These were originally ordered from CZB by the "South Chinese Government" which was unable to pay for them.
The serial number and description both seem to make sense for this being one of those rifles. I've also read that "IACO SAC CA", the Import Arms Company of Sacramento California, imported rifles from a variety of places across the globe, including Brazil.

Any thoughts on this one? I've given it my best guess in the ~ 1 hour of digging, but I don't have decades of Mauser experience under my belt (yet!).
 

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Are those the photos of your 'prize'? It is not Brazilian. An older Czech? I have an 8mm and generally the 7mm are older models. I am also not an expert by any means. My strong suite in Mausers are the Swedes. We look forward to more photos when it arrives.
 

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What you have is a Brazilian VZ24JC. You are fortunate to not have the later Brazilian Military Police markings which were added to many of them. Some importers also stamped an ugly new s/n on the receiver ring (as shown in photo below).

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
What you have is a Brazilian VZ24JC. You are fortunate to not have the later Brazilian Military Police markings which were added to many of them. Some importers also stamped an ugly new s/n on the receiver ring (as shown in photo below).
I have seen your posts on the VZ 24JC, but I noticed this rifle doesn't have the cutout near the bolt handle for added clearance. Is that correct?

I appreciate your help! Your posts here are excellent and have been a help to me really ever since I took interest in Mauser rifles.
 

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I have seen your posts on the VZ 24JC, but I noticed this rifle doesn't have the cutout near the bolt handle for added clearance. Is that correct?

I appreciate your help! Your posts here are excellent and have been a help to me really ever since I took interest in Mauser rifles.

I think the stock has been replaced on yours at some point as it would have the bolt cutout originally, like Bill's example.
 

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I have seen your posts on the VZ 24JC, but I noticed this rifle doesn't have the cutout near the bolt handle for added clearance. Is that correct?

I appreciate your help! Your posts here are excellent and have been a help to me really ever since I took interest in Mauser rifles.
Thanks for the kind words. As for your stock, it appears that the VZ24JC stock with bolt cutout has been replaced with a standard VZ24 stock (as Stan61 said). Not original, but not a total loss as it is very similar to the JC stock except for the bolt handle cutout. I would be keeping an eye out for an empty VZ24JC stock; you might get lucky.
 

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To the OP, I was going to throw in a bid on that one too but decided not to after the seller didn't answer my email regarding matching numbers on the bolt after a few days. I'm glad it went to someone on this board! Very curious to see more of it when you get it in, congrats!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'll be sure to make a follow up post when it arrives! I'll keep my eye out for a VZ24JC stock set. I see one parts gun on Gunbroker, but the seller wants way too much for it.

I'm curious to see if this was a replacement stock here in the US or if this was done for maintenance in Brazil.

Is there any information out there on specifically what these rifles were used for or by whom? I've read the story about the "rebels" who ordered them and the government intercepted them, but hadn't heard much beyond that. I've seen some that appear to have those police marks, but like you mentioned Bill, it this one lacks those markings.
 

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If you do a search for these (Vz24JC) on the forum you should find some posts with info. There was a post I think from last year regarding some info on these and the story about being for China originally.
 

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I have seen your posts on the VZ 24JC, but I noticed this rifle doesn't have the cutout near the bolt handle for added clearance. Is that correct?
I appreciate your help! Your posts here are excellent and have been a help to me really ever since I took interest in Mauser rifles.
good eyes!
There seems to be a Persian serial # on the right butt --> a VZ24 JC in a Persian stock?

Chris
 

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I really like the 7 mm mauser round its one of the flattest shooting rounds there is. You remind me I have one of these maybe two tucked away in the safe. Still in cosmoline.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Well, the rifle arrived, a few oddities. Long story short, I think this was someone's parts gun.

  • Chris, you were right! It was sitting in a Persian stock set, which appears to be matching. I threw it in a spare stock set I had laying around instead. The handguard appears to have the last couple digits of the Persian number on the stock.
  • The firing pin, striker, bolt shroud, and safety appear to be from a German Gew 98. They were also hacked up by bubba... the flag being ground down to clear a scope most likely and the flag itself being modified. The entire assembly looks polished and reblued.
  • I cannot make out the serial number on the bolt body, but it appears to be right for one of these Mauser rifles, though I am not sure if it's matching.
  • The bore is in surprisingly good condition, and pitting beneath the wood isn't as prolific as I had initially thought.
  • I've attached a few photos of markings on the barrel. Never seen an AA1 mark before.
I'm on the hunt for a VZ-24JC stock now! I've got a Czech striker assembly that should work fine on this rifle's bolt in the spare parts box.

Any more details on the fate of these guns? From what I've found digging around, they were initially ordered in 1930 by "South China"... presumably the future Taiwanese? They defaulted on payment and the rifles were then sold to Brazilian Rebels in 1932 but were intercepted by the Brazilian government? Presumably this was not the Brazilian Revolution of 1930 but rather the Constitutionalist Revolution, and the Sao Paulo revolutionaries are the supposed customers?

Wood Material property Bumper Rim Auto part
Brown Wood Trunk Rectangle Wood stain
Brown Wood Rectangle Natural material Wood stain
Wood Road surface Brick Grass Rectangle
Motor vehicle Fixture Gas Auto part Automotive wheel system
Trigger Air gun Bicycle part Shotgun Gun accessory
Automotive tire Camera lens Tread Wood Camera accessory


See the album of photos here:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I've finally managed to acquire a VZ24 JC stock set, though it's missing some of it's hardware.

I noticed that the side mounted sling loop doesn't have a square peg hole on my stock, but rather a round hole on both sides. The standard sling mount stud also seems a little bit long for the stock. Was there a washer put in underneath the square stud for the loop on the original rifles?
 

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I've finally managed to acquire a VZ24 JC stock set, though it's missing some of it's hardware.

I noticed that the side mounted sling loop doesn't have a square peg hole on my stock, but rather a round hole on both sides. The standard sling mount stud also seems a little bit long for the stock. Was there a washer put in underneath the square stud for the loop on the original rifles?
The VZ24JC is a lightweight version of the VZ24. The stock is slimmer and some of the stock hardware may be slightly different. The VZ24 has no washer on the wrist swivel.
 

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Looks good. These were never intended for China, that (JC) was just a cover story used within ZB to hide the fact they were selling rifles to Brazilian rebels.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Looks good. These were never intended for China, that (JC) was just a cover story used within ZB to hide the fact they were selling rifles to Brazilian rebels.
I've actually typed up a little blurb for this and posted on another gun forum I frequent on reddit: Below is a copy/paste of that text if anyone was curious or stumbles on this thread here. It's in large part a summarization of information I've learned on these boards along with info seen in MMROTW 5th Ed.:

This is a Brazilian VZ 24 JC rifle made under contract by the arsenal at Brno (ZB) in Czechoslovakia. The "JC" is short for Jižní Čína or "South China" in Czech... but more on this later.

Mechanically, this rifle is identical to any other VZ-24 rifle; its design was inspired from German K98AZ from WWI. It is a standard length, large ring 1898 pattern action. What makes the VZ-24 JC rifle unique is that it has several optional features. It uses a lightweight barrel and lighter profile stock. The bolt itself is turn down, ground flat and checkered. There is a clearance cut made in the stock to make grasping the bolt easier. Additionally, and most notably, it is chambered in 7mm Mauser (the best mm Mauser); uncommon for the VZ-24 contract rifles.

At this point you might ask, "why did China order these rifles?" The Chinese at this time largely used 8mm Mauser cartridge in their Hanyang 88 type rifles, but would adopt the Mauser Standardmodell and Type 24 Chaing Kai Shek rifles a few years after this rifle would be made. Typically, the Chinese wouldn't order rifles with all these relatively high dollar features, and they certainly wouldn't have ordered a rifle in an uncommon cartridge in military use. Every rifle subsequently ordered would more or less be the standard export model of Mauser rifle, with none of the features seen on this VZ-24 JC.

Commonly repeated historical believe, which I don't believe to be entirely correct, has been that these rifles were ordered by the "South Chinese" government in 1930. At the point that these were ready for shipment, they defaulted on payments. The Czech would then find a buyer in Brazil by a group of revolutionaries, who either took them as manufactured, or requested that they be rechambered in 7mm Mauser. These rifles would go on to be used by revolutionaries in Brazil. Occasionally it's written that they're captured by the Brazilian government prior to delivery, but not always.

The most realistic and likely story that I've been led to believe is as follows. The bulk of this information was referenced from Vladimír Francev's book cited at the end of this write up. In late 1929, Gutullio Vargas, the Governor of Rio Grande de Sul, met with officials at ZB and contracted for 15,000 VZ 24 rifles among other small arms. The contract was done under the guise of it being for the "South Chinese" government. The timeline was short, so ZB pulled rifles from army stores, a practice common at the time and one used for other contracts like the first contract of Romanian rifles. New barrels chambered for 7mm Mauser were manufactured and fitted to the rifles, and features specific to the scope of the contract were added to the rifles. These details are summarized above and will be detailed below in the photo album. The 1930 Brazilian Rebellion occurred, which potentially delayed delivery. Vargas would gain power during this conflict and the rifles would then be delivered in October that same year. There's no specific evidence that these rifles were used in this rebellion, but there's still suspicion that some rifles were delivered in time (around March 1930) and it's been written that these rifles were paid for in advance by Vargas.

Part of the theory and reason behind this confusion around the origin of these rifles likely has to do with the secrecy in the contract and order of the rifles. Vladimir Francev alludes to the contract being done in secret under a pseudonym. Ottakar Franek writes a bit more detail on inner workings at ZB, which includes what is effectively a coverup on the origin of the contract, the use of rifles from army stores, and the location that rifles would be delivered. Quite a few officials at ZB were kept out of the loop, which likely got those involved in some hot water. Ultimately though, the entire event was brushed under the rug and any proof of wrongdoing was quietly erased from the record book. The foreign minister, Edvard Beneš, knew about the entire debacle, which may be why things were forgotten about and those involved saw no serious reprimand. Where some of the misconception may come from is Miroslav Šada's brief write up on the VZ24 JC rifle, which only mentions that the rifles were intended for "South China" and Brazil ended up with them.

This rifle, and how I ended up with it is also somewhat convoluted. I put a low bid on a Gunbroker auction and ended up winning. Come to find out it was a VZ 24 JC sitting in a Persian contract VZ 24 stock set but also had a few bubba'd parts on it. After playing musical gun parts, I managed to acquire a correct stock set and replacement bolt parts. Also noteworthy on this rifle: it is very common to find these rifles marked with a PM prefix serial number added to the right side of the receiver ring. It's generally accepted that these rifles were taken into Brazilian Polícia Militar (Military Police) stores and re-numbered accordingly. This rifle is somewhat unique in that it seems to have escaped that fate.

As always, feel free to point out any errors. I'm not a professional, but love to learn about this stuff. The album linked at the top of the page and here has more detailed photos with image descriptions. Also a reminder to check out the Milsurp Section this sub's FAQ/WIKI Pages that has lots of free outside resources I've compiled. I'm always looking to add more resources to that list.

Excerpts from information provided by user ryg from gunboards were used in large part for the info in this post: What kind of VZ24 is this?

Books/Authors referenced are:
  • Československé zbraně ve světě - V míru i za války (Czechoslovak weapons in the world - In peace and during the war) by Vladimír Francev:
  • Ceskoslovenska Rucni Palne Zbrane a Kulomety (Czechoslovak Small Arms and Machine Guns) by Miroslav Sada
  • Zbrane Pro Cely Svet, (Arms for the Whole World) by Ottakar Franek
  • Robert Ball's Mauser Military Rifles of the Worth 5th Ed, who cites all but Francev's 2015 book having been published prior to that book in 2011
 

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Just a couple of comments. You wrote "its design was inspired from German K98AZ from WWI". They may have liked the short rifle concept of the small ring K98a (not K98AZ), but in fact the large ring VZ24 was just a shortened VZ98/22 (with the VZ23 in between the VZ98/22 and VZ24). Then the VZ24(JC) was just a lightened VZ24.

You wrote "7mm Mauser (the best mm Mauser); uncommon for the VZ-24 contract rifles". In addition to the Brazilian VZ24JC, Brazil also had the M1908/34 (same as the El Salvadoran VZ12/33), all in 7mm. Also in 7mm, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Uruguay, and Venezuela had the VZ24. Some other South American countries had 7.65mm and 8mm VZ24 rifles.
 
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