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Thread: Dummy Vz.58P from Sportsmans Guide and Demilled Vz.58P kit from AKParts.com

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    Gunco Member Richard W.'s Avatar
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    Default Dummy Vz.58P from Sportsmans Guide and Demilled Vz.58P kit from AKParts.com

    Kind of off-topic for an AK board, but these Czech rifles are
    usually considered a footnote to Kalashnikov history. The Czechs
    didn't adopt the AK design, but instead developed their own assault
    rifle and put it into production in 1958.

    They look slightly similar to AK's in their layout, but are
    completely different in operation. For example, the bolt locks
    differently, the firing mechanism works differently,
    and it has a short-stroke gas piston operation. Nothing
    interchanges with an AK. The original uses a milled receiver, and
    OOW sells a very nice semiautomatic version that they
    call the vz 2000 for $1250 (!)

    I purchased a dummy Vz.58P from the Sportsmans Guide in
    the hopes that it would satisfy my curiosity about the design,
    but it only makes me want a "real" (but semi) one all the more. It's kind of
    chintzy, with a plastic receiver and only the major parts present,
    but it will suffice as a wall hanger (from a distance).



    The good news is that an 80% receiver is in the works at
    Prexis/Sten and it is supposed to offer a substantial savings over
    the OOW one, so an affordable build may be possible soon. With this
    in mind, I ordered a Vz.58P kit from AKParts.com.
    Since this will likely be my only Vz.58 build, I really wanted a
    decent kit. The AKParts site describes the Vz.58 kits as being in
    "Excellent condition", but I contacted Chris (the owner, I believe) for some
    reassurance. He defined it like so:

    "EXCELLENT: All original parts; over 80% original finish; sharp
    lettering, numerals, and design on metal and wood; unmarred wood; fine bore."

    This exactly describes the kit I received, and I think it will make a great
    basis for a semi build. It's been carefully demilled: no burns, no
    cuts, and nothing is bent. Sharp, shiny bore.



    It's an earlier one. Marked with the code "she 62", it was
    manufactured at Povaska Bystrica in 1962. The Czechs painted all the
    metal on these rifles with dark gray enamel. Note the barrel pin (arrow); I
    think it is only pressed and pinned.



    The Czechs used a unique material for the handguards and pistol
    grips. It's a phenolic resin impregnated with wood chips. Early
    buttstocks were solid wood (beech?), but later ones were made with
    this same plastic.
    Neat stuff: strong, light, and attractive. The AKParts kit came with
    the wood butt and the dummy is a later example that has the
    plastic. That funky drooped shape gives a surprisingly comfortable cheekweld.
    Here, the plastic butt's on top, wooden one underneath it.



    Even the bayonets use this material for grips.



    The magazines are aluminum and do not interchange with AK's, but
    they are sturdy and extremely well-made. Like the earlier Vz.52's,
    these rifles were originally chambered for the unique Czech 7.62 x 45
    ammunition, and later were adapted to use 7.62 x 39. The AKParts kit
    comes with one mag and the dummy came with a
    pouch and 4 mags. That built-up track on the spine houses a sturdy
    bolt hold-open projection on the follower.



    All of the internal parts are included with the AKParts kit (most of which
    were left out of the Sportsman's Guide dummy gun). It's
    fairly clear where some of the pins and screws go, but I'm going to
    need a very
    good diagram to sort out the rest of the parts.



    A Vz.58 build, like an AK, will be subject to the parts
    restrictions of 922r. OOW sells
    a set of U.S. made compliance parts, but it comes in a package with
    their receiver ($795!). Don't know if they'll sell it separately or
    not. Anyone know?

    I'm very pleased with my Vz kit from AKParts.com, and, without any
    reservation, I can recommend ordering one from them.
    Last edited by Richard W.; 05-14-2005 at 03:21 PM.

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