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So now I have the rifle and a bunch of surplus ammo. I figured this past weekend I'd take the rifle apart and see what makes it tick.
I was very much surprised at what I found inside. the thing is made like a brick [email protected] inside. The way the bolt and extractor is made is very impressive. All machined parts. No sheet metal or rough castings. I own a few semi's from that era and before. The gas system looks pretty inovative. The tilting bolt is kinda like my AG42B Ljungman but more robust. The trigger group does resemble the one on my Garand, but again it's much more "over enginered"
Compared to my SVT40 and the AK's and PSL's it looks like a much better design. Much more finely finished. I'm impressed.
I'm looking froward to shooting it this weekend!
 

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Neat Rigs!

They are a very innovative design and well made ... with the possible exception of the stocks, which were made out of some punky trash wood so that most of them still existing have broken or split stocks to some extent or another.

That fire control / trigger group is a direct knock-off of our Garand system, and is a whole lot better than what Simenov cooked up for his SKS. It's still pretty complicated though, and best not taken apart without pretty good reason to.

That surplus ammo is extremely corrosive, so make sure that you clean ASAP after firing, and get up underneath that gas cylinder "cup" where it goes around the barrel. Try to run a pipe cleaner dipped in anti-corrosive salt solution up through the gas port, too.

I personally like BALLISTOL mixed with water for decontamination, then straight Ballistol for rust prevention when dry.

There used to be a couple of breakdown tutorials in here someplace - may have sunk into the depths of archival obscurity by now though.
There are a few tricks to it.

A bunch of us made a "group buy" of LEE custom loading dies for the 7.62 X 45mm, and are still waiting for them, several months later.
It is a really interesting cartridge, and the VZ 52 is an interesting and fun rifle to shoot.

Sort of like a cross between an SKS and an M-14...
 
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