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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I've just today purchased one VZ52/57 and now waiting for it to be delivered. It is suppose to be in mint condition but unfortunately comes with only one magazine. Do you guys know any source for 7.62x39 magazines for it?
It is going to be my first VZ52/57 and I know almost nothing about them. Are there any specific problems that I have to expect from this rifle?
For the past few days I read a lots of posts here about VZ52/57 but very few have Pros and Cons in general about VZ52/57 system.
Any know scope mount system for it?
 

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I have a 52/57 on layaway, and I'm running into the same questions. There seems to be very little info out there, especially in the form of reference books. You can get "Czech Firearms and Ammunition" by Dolinek, published in 1995, but be prepared to pay $300 (+).

From the various forums, I usually get this kind of info:

- Vz52's are more plentiful (manufactured for 5 years), mags are easier to find, they are great shooters, but the 7.62x45mm ammo is expensive.

- Vz52/57's are more scarce (manufactured for 2 years), mags are almost impossible to find, they are not as reliable shooters (compared to the earlier model), but the 7.62x39mm ammo is relatively inexpensive.

I'll be happy to have an example of both in the safe!
 

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Here's my earlier post about converting AK mags:

On pg 16 of THE CESKOSLOVENSKA ZBROJOVKA VZOR CZ52&CZ52/57 by Thimsen, he lists a loading of 27.6-32.4 gr IMR 3031, bullet weight 131.7, .311/.312 diameter yielding 2450 FPS. He also lists 37 gr W748, 123 gr PSP by Win, .311/.312 diameter yielding 2650 FPS. It goes without saying, use at your own discretion. He does not list any pressures or the source(s) of his information. I am submitting this solely for the use (with discretion) by those interested in this cartridge.

Same book, he has dimensions/instructions/reference sheet/template for converting AK mags to work in VZ52/57 rifles for those fortunate 'nuff to have them and wish to utilize high capacity mags or, make use of readily available mags.
Edit: The template gives instructions for combining the VZ upper portion with the AK lower, yielding a higher capacity mag only for the 52/57 rifles as the '45 cartridge is too long for the AK mag....my apologizies.

Enjoy-
 

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You'll be very happy with your VZ52/57. When you fire your first 7.62 x 39 round through that rifle, you'll understand just how well these rifles operate and how neat that round really is. They're a pleasure to shoot and make an SKS feel like a Ford model T compared to a modern car, it's that different.

Understand the history of these rifles. They were used primarily by border guards along the iron curtain. They are compact, robust, rugged, and handsome rifles with integral bayonets. They also have a unique feature: they eject to the left! The only other rifle that I know does that is the VZ52. No other military rifle does for some reason.

They are easy to maintain and you'll figure out the gas system although try a few rounds before fussing with it if at all. I, personally, have never had to change it from when I got mine home.

As for scoping it, please set that idea aside. There are ZERO scope mounts made for it. It's a 100 yard rifle, no more. Border guards didn't need more than that and the limited action they have seen were more close-quarter combat than anything else. They are not long-distance shooters by any means.

Now, regarding mags, realize that the VZ52 shoots the 7.62 x 45 round which is longer than the 7.62 x 39 round. You can actually load 39 rounds into the 45 mag without a problem. I haven't tried using a 7.62 x 45 mag in a VZ52/57 myself but don't see why it might not work. Trying to locate additional mags is virtually going to be impossible.

Understand, too, that these rifles were designed to have ammo stripped in from the top. That would eliminate having to swap mags in the first place.

Good luck with your new acquisition. It's an extremely hard-to-find rifle and will not drop in value by a penny. There is very little info about production numbers so no one really knows how many were made. They did come at the end of the production line of the VZ52, however, and then abandoned in favor of the AK47.

Rome
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Too bad I didn't know that magz are so hard to come by. Few gun-shows back I've seen one dude selling five of them for $150. :(

If you have more info on converting rifle to accept AK magazines I'll really appreciate you posting it here. Have anybody done it? Any problem with loading from AM mags?

Few years back I've actually handled one of VZ52/57 and what I remember is very pure balance of rifle. If felt like 80% of rifle's wait was in front and it was kind of awkward. Nevertheless, if this rifle was accepted as service rifle in Czechoslovakia it mast be a good rifle.
 

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The balance of these rifles is actually pretty good, imho, certainly no worse than, say the SKS.

Regarding the mags, don't forget that a LOT of military rifles were only issued with one or two mags and the troops were expected to strip in from the top as opposed to toting around a dozen mags on a belt. I've got a VZ52 mag holder pouch and it's only designed for one single mag I assume in case the original was lost or damaged instead of swapping a mag at the end of 10 rounds.

There is a pamphlet/manual out there that clearly shows how to mod larger mags for the VZ52 and 52/57. You can still find it as they are available and not expensive. I clearly recall seeing the dimensions for a 20 or 30 round mag retrofit in that pamphelt/manual. You can find it here:

http://www.surplusbunker.com/index....id=858&zenid=e5512811cf97194277065e9461317723

At $10 it's worth it just because of the time it will save you.

Rome
 

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Scope Mounts:

Don't be so sure that the VZ-52/57 didn't get scoped;
I pirated these images somewhere - could have been here...
If I had to venture a guess I'd say it might be from the Buddy Hinton collection - if it has anything to do with these rifles Buddy probably has at least one of 'em.

Anyway; here's a shot of what appears to be a Czech military sniper scope mount:

....


And for a real wonder to behold; a starlight or infa red (I'm not sure which really) night vision scope:

.....


Now ain't that just the cat's pajamas?
 

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Uncle Jacque, that's amazing. I vaguely recall having seen those accident scenes a while back, probably at Hinton's site like you suggest.

I suppose it is just possible that the VZ52 or 52/57 were actually scoped by someone somewhere but I've never seen one, single rifle that appeared to have been altered in any way for a scope to be installed and most certainly not the way those photos show! Wowzer. Talk about ugly. Like the Yugoslavians, some of the Czechs may have altered a rifle or two with a field-installed scope mount but I don't think it was a prevalent practice. The manual I had did not mention and facility for scoping, either. But, there you have two photos showing those monstrosities. Thanks for posting those up. Tetan, don't get any ideas!! ;)


Rome
 

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I recently acquired several 'extra' receiver covers w/the intentions of seeing if possible to mount a weaver-type rail to it enabling a scope to be mounted to the cover and then switched from rifle to rifle in the event one was lucky 'nuff to have more than one. I hope to get with my machinist friend Sunday and see what we can cook up that will allow the scope to be used w/o blocking ejection....Wish us luck-

I also have 2 other books on the VZ52 & 52/57 series of rifles distributed by Monarch Book Co, 16845 N. 29th Ave. Ste. 203, Phoenix, AZ 85023 602-530-8687. 1 is TECHNICAL IDENTIFICATION AND OPERATION MANUAL and #2 is CZECH MODEL 52/57: COMBAT COLLEGE OF ARIZONA SPECIAL FIELD MANUAL SERIES USAIMA TYPE 31-11-S. As I have had these books several years, I have no idea of the current costs; sorry.
NOTE: These last 2 books listed DO NOT have the template for converting magazines.
Hope that helps someone-
 
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