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VZ24 in 7.62, not Israeli marked, but Brazilian Police

Posted: Sun Jun 10, 2018 4:30 pm
by DaleH
My local toy store has this for sale, but at $450 on consignment I have more than a few concerns ...

I have been reading up on the Czech (made by Brno) VZ24 Mausers, looks like they originally rechambered some to 7.62, but did not mark them in the traditional manner of '7.62' on top of the receiver over the chamber, nor the wood stock marking of 7.62 on the bottom of the butt stock so it could be read whilst in the rack. Allegedly these were made for a shipment to China, who renegged on the order ... so they went to the Brazilian Police, where the receiver is marked as PM for 'Police Militar'.

My concerns:
1) It is clearly marked as 'CAI .308 Belgium' by Century Arms International, with a Georgia, Utah address, but last I knew of them they were in VT. I did try a 'Field' headspace gauge and it did NOT close on it. I remain VERY curious at the 'Belgium' marking.

2) I put a loaded 308 Federal Gold Medal Match cartridge into the muzzle ... expecting a good 1/4" or more of the bullet not to enter and to my SURPRISE and shock ... the entire bullet and maybe a tad of the case (too hard to tell) dropped into the bore. The bore was dirty, not bright, but brighter than being 'darker' (and with zero pitting) and using a good bore light, it appears that the first 1/2" or so wasn't so much as counter-bored, but either Bubba or CAI stuck a #'d or lettered'd drill bit into the muzzle to clean up the crown. Has anyone else ever seen this before? I have seen it done by a true counter-bore on 91/30 Mosin-Nagants, but zero experience here.

3) It is also missing parts (leaf adjustment on the rear sight elevator and locking screw on the hinged floor plate). Recoverable - yes, but I know that CAI has a reputation on 'parts build guns' and I read where NONE of these Israeli rifles were expected to have any parts match. So any comments here?

I know the shop owner really well and I'm sure I could get it for less, maybe even a lot less ... but I really want it as a shooter for cast loads (since my Uncle left me thousands of cast 309s ... ) but I really don't want to take a chance on an unknown bore. But I have not yet asked the shop owner if I can clean the bore, oil it and perhaps throw a lead slug/roundball down it to measure it.

I'd appreciate any suggestions here!

Re: VZ24 in 7.62, not Israeli marked, but Brazilian Police

Posted: Mon Jun 11, 2018 1:37 am
by 72 usmc
Odd that it is 7.62 Nato. Most of these PM marked on the right side and has the original Czech serial number on the left side are in 7mm Mauser and are found in really beat condition. Just filty bores and wood. They have a dragged behind a tractor look. SAMCO had pallets of 7mm Vz 24 that were dogs. Most have very worn bores like the rifling is gone at the muzzle from wear. It should have a bent bolt with a flat instead of a ball if its a PM marked Police rifle. Are you sure its 308 Nato??? The few I have seen were just trash and in 7mm. Bolts did not match either serial numbers- there are 2 different ones on the rifle and some of the later ones have a third dot matrix CAI import serial number on the left side with the rest of the import mark on the barrel. Some of the early selects have a small SAMCO import mark only under the barrel. "SAMCO MIA FL". No other marks on the receiver.

To my knowledge, none of the ones at recent shows had counter bores-- just a well rounded crown and no visible rifling at the muzzle. Just really worn. None had matching bolts and all in 7mm mauser. Some have straight bolts others bent.

If the CAI apes converted them, maybe they also did a bad crown job. Why convert a shot out 7mm barrel to.308 Nato? Not sure how they did it. Use 7mm or 8mm barreled rifles? But Century does some odd stuff like messing up the Mas 36 rifles and others- French 7.5 to .308 Nato. You can find these VZ 24s easily in 7mm. How different is the bolt face? Is it ground? Does the bolt match and is it newly restamped ? Most actions when taken out of the wood have rust pits at the wood lines and by the band locations. I did not pay much attention to the PM serial number, maybe those were all 8mm? I thought most or all were 7mm and in a group of about 10 rifles a guy was dumping at a recent gun show. They were more wall hangers than shooters. They were in such bad condition it was not worth a look at $200 a rifle. I remember the bolt lugs were well worn and the bores poor- no visible rifling at the muzzle. None had any counterbore work. His had a small import mark on the barrel. I wonder if its safe putting a .308 bullet through a 7mm barrel? I avoid conversions. I would ask how the conversion was done and by who and if its a safe conversion? Ask a qualified gunsmith ---see my last comments about other condition concerns. Of recent, I have been seeing bad condition Spanish mausers at shows too- I think this is all sold of at auction SAMCO rifles. Do a search for Samco auction and see the auction photos of pallets of junk /parts rifles.

If you want a decent .308 NATO just get a K98K Israeli conversion. It was converted by Israeli machinists- great work, not the apes at Century.

If done correct a recrown and counter bore is the poor boy way to restore a rifle to almost like new. The bullet does not know it's in a counterbore because the rifling is great to the end of the counter bore way inside the barrel. It is like the last 1 or 2 inches that was enlarged at the end of the barrel is not there. If done poorly, a counterbore or a poor crown job can be a nightmare placing the bullet off target or maybe a few targets distance to the right, left, top, or bottom :lol: :lol:
If it is a $100 rifle and you want to rebarrel, it might be ok. $450 is nuts. Think additional, Lots of cash on the new barrel and gunsmith labor to set it up and reheadspace it. Hence, I think it would be easy to just get a nice Israeli K98K.
At that price :doh: :doh: , at the least, have a gunsmith check out the counterbore and/or crown- find out if its ok and actually how great the remaining rifling is. Check the chamber for pits or darkness and rust, out of round- it should be mirror bright. Have a gunsmith check out the bolt and its headspace and the throat. Is the bolt hole oblong and a burn ring around its face? Firing pin spring crisp? Smooth action or does it bind? Are the lugs damaged?

review this on K98ks. ... =13&t=1911
My Israeli Mausers are tack drivers.

Re: VZ24 in 7.62, not Israeli marked, but Brazilian Police

Posted: Mon Jun 11, 2018 9:57 am
by DaleH
Good input, thanks!

Believe me ... I would only pick up this one if I could slug & measure the bore and if at a LOW price ... otherwise I’d be smarter putting that $$ towards a real Israeli surplus 7.62 98K.

I guess I’m just more curious ... was it truly part of an Israeli sale to So America or is it just an abomination of CAI parts build?

Re: VZ24 in 7.62, not Israeli marked, but Brazilian Police

Posted: Mon Jun 11, 2018 10:08 am
by 72 usmc
This is the best info on the K98s to Israel: ... i-service/

SAMCO auction photos- click on upper tabs "photos" very photo heavy. ... -firearms/

Re: VZ24 in 7.62, not Israeli marked, but Brazilian Police

Posted: Mon Jun 11, 2018 2:27 pm
by 72 usmc
Great condition Vz 24s in 8mm and Israeli K98ks are great shooters. Even with average worn barrels as long as the crown is good and rifling can be seen at the end of the barrel both shoot very well. I would avoid the beat Guatemalan Israeli K98k examples unless you find one with a nice bore. These are generally well used, beat rifles at the end of their life. Most have rotten stocks and very worn bores, some pitted inside & out.