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CIA RI1554-X VZ2008 30+1 7.62mmX39mm 16.25"

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Model: RI1554-X
Condition: Surplus
Bud's Item Number: 72946
UPC: 787450048652
MFG: Century International Arms Inc.

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Originally issued to the Czech army in 1958, the VZ58 is still in use by both the Czech and Slovak armies, their police and customs agents. Though similar to the other rifles of this style in appearance, the VZ58 uses a completely different bolt and fire control system. Even with a machined receiver, the VZ2008 is lighter than most similarly styled firearms with a sheet metal receiver. Our semi-auto version features a U.S. made receiver machined out of a bar of premium steel and a quality U.S. made barrel.
Finish Tan
Action Single Shot
Caliber 41 Remington Mag
Barrel Length 16.4"
Overall Length 42.12"
Trigger X-Mark Pro
Safety Slide safety
Capacity 24+1
Stock Collapsible
Weight 7 lbs
Finish Black
Action Semi-Automatic
Caliber 7.62x39mm
Barrel Length 16.25"
Overall Length 27" - 35.5"
Trigger Standard
Safety Lever
Capacity 30 + 1
Stock Folding
Weight 7 lbs

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Product Reviews
20 Reviews. Average Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars! [4.5 of 5 Stars!]
5 stars:
75% (15 of 20)
4 stars:
10% (2 of 20)
3 stars:
10% (2 of 20)
2 stars:
0% ( of 20)
1 star:
5% (1 of 20)
Reviewed By: Ryan S on 06/17/2014 Rating: 3 of 5 Stars! [3 of 5 Stars!]
The Good:
Went to pick up at FFL and when he lifted the box cover, I was greatly surprised to have the complete cleaning kit, 1 mag with gun, 4 extra mags in pigskin pouch (pouch was moldy but I like that authenticity touch and the pigskin still has that OLD leather smell), a virtually perfect bayonet with the smooth surface leather scabbard circa 1969 (the numbers on the bayonet were EARLY production and it's a 9.5 out of 10 bayonet; the scabbard showed signs of a bored soldier with bayonet pokes on the tip, "Civil Zima 2004 69" " was inked on the inside belt hoop (believe it's 04/20/69"). There was even oil in the canister tool too. The magazines were ALL in excellent condition. 2 of them had wear from the pigskin pouch cover, (as evident on the skin), but the other 3 had no such wear. But even with the small wearing on the bottom corners of the 2 mags, they still look new elsewhere. All 5 look great, and 3 of 5 have really stiff springs, whereas the other 2 seem a little more broken in. Also received a near perfect rifle sling, with minimal wear and very light leather with green strap. As far as the extras go, I hit pay dirt. So right off the bat there was easily $120 worth of historical extras I didn't think I was going to be getting.

The Good, Bad, and Ugly
The gun itself looked OK for the most part. No real scratches or visible defects with exception being the front sight hoop. It has a noticeable "bump", as if it were struck on something. But this appears to be pre-paint damage as there is no scuffing of the surface, so minus 1 star from Century for ignoring a visible defect.

The rear sight is sorta cheap. After oiling the button, I was able to adjust elevation easily, BUT the side to side tolerances aren't great, meaning it's possible it might be a little askew if hastily adjusted, leading to accuracy inconsistencies.

The bolt cycles, but hangs slightly midway if cycled slowly (no ammo being cycled). Dunno if that's normal or not, but it's there. It might need oiled on the rails or inspected further for surface roughness.

None of the "buttons" were oiled. So, I had to oil the folding stock, upper hand guard, rear cover, and bayonet "buttons" to make everything either work or move as they were near frozen, but NO rust thankfully.

After the top hand guard was removed and the block and rear cover were out, I pulled the gas piston and removed it's spring. Then reinserted the piston without the spring and manually worked it while rotating the piston. I discovered that it was "catching" in one position rather badly. So, if it were a clock, it'd always catch in the 10 o'clock spot. Took a gunsmith stone to it and worked the outer surface coating off (not chrome, so I doubt it's surplus) by putting the spring end into a hand drill and uniformly spinning the outer surface off the piston ends as I was thinking the rod was bent. It still "hung" in the same spot, but after working back and forth, it scuffed the polished surface from the stone and I could clearly see high spots (both piston landings) and a TINY imperfection indent in the second, thinner landing. The final ring guide surface that's seated near the spring, was also rubbing and causing friction. I was able to essentially "lathe" a few thousandths off everything to correct this, but this serious defect shouldn't be in a production gun. I'll eventually get a chrome plated "real" VZ58 counterpart for $30, but for now it at least works and I shouldn't have to worry about failed casing ejections or worse broken piston rod. So that's definitely a star removal. I also leveled the mating surface of the piston top to make sure it seated correctly. I suggest a gunsmith inspection and fix as opposed to DIY. Or just save the hassle and get a chechpoint part (assuming they'll fit).

All 5 of the magazines wobble a bit, but with NO wear on the mags I'm not suspecting mag faults. Seems the receiver was machined a bit on the "loose" side for some reason. Either live with it or shim.

If manually working the bolt slowly, gotta watch you don't scrape fingers against rear sight as the nub is rather short. Looks like a competent welder could move the nub to the opposite side or lengthen slightly.

Overall though, I like the gun, and figure I paid in the high $300 range for a very light, 30 round 7.62x39 rifle (with folding stock no less and non-welded muzzle break) with a $120 worth of extras that'll make a good plinking rifle for a fraction of the "real" thing, that I can customize and still have less in it than outright price of an import. It's set up for a lefty, which makes dropping the mag or selecting safety lever left-handed easy. It's also a cheap platform that readily accepts aftermarket rails, grips, lights, sights, ACOG, etc. Aftermarket sights are probably a good idea for best accuracy.

** I strongly suggest inspecting this gun thoroughly BEFORE going to the range with it. Any peculiarities (like the badly cast piston in mine) need to be squared away before shooting. There was virtually NO oil on anything, so find out what needs oiled too. Another oddity was there was NO literature with the gun. No warnings, no advice, no handling instructions, NOTHING. Other than what's stamped on the receiver, that's the only thing "written" anywhere. So please, buy with some caution and don't be the "I opened the box and went straight to the range with it without oiling or inspecting guy".

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Reviewed By: Christopher W on 05/23/2014 Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
I understand Centuries can be a hit or miss but I have heard you get better odds with the VZ58 and so I decided to pick one up. Buds was great and my VZ58 has performed flawlessly so far. 120 rounds of steel case(have not tries brass) and has ran perfect. Bolt hold open works and I have found the trigger at least on mine seems to be better then most people say. Could hit steel at 50 or 100 yards easily with the iron sights. The mags are a pain to find and the add ons are a tad pricey but it is the best 7.62x39 I have shot.

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Reviewed By: Matthew S on 03/31/2014 Rating: 1 of 5 Stars! [1 of 5 Stars!]
Despite Centuries hit or miss reputation, I decided to give them a shot on the build. When I went to pickup the riffle at my FFL, I noticed a small crack on the rear of the receiver cover, which as a bad start. I decided to accept the transfer anyway, knowing I could buy an original receiver cover is much better shape for about $20. Went home, tested it out...no trigger issues like the ones commonly reported. Things were looking OK.

I proceeding with basic field strip, and took my time cleaning the firearm properly, noting tons of filth everywhere. Barrel took a long time to clean, countless patches were black. I noticed the recover cover was difficult to remove, (yes I pulled the trigger first to relax the springs) After about 2 hours of CLP work, firearm reassembled. Trigger functioned and all seemed well.

Later that night trigger was failing on-and off. I found setting the by setting the safely on and off and cocking, The trigger worked again. I haven't fired it yet. Today I took it out to check it out. 2 days ago when I put it away the trigger was working. Today trigger fails no matter what I do. I also can't field strip since trigger doesn't work.

I now strongly regret this recent purchase. Century is a local company for me, only 5 miles from where I live. I wanted to give them a chance. I would not again. I'm no gunsmith, but having an engineering background, I know how this firearm works. I would have been better off doing a quality build myself and having a gunsmith check my work. While Century is in my neighborhood if they were willing to help I understand the average turnaround is 6 weeks. I'm at the point where I may just use the thing for parts and built do a built I know will be reliable, rather than wait forever to get my new riffle back.

Given the circumstances I can't recommend this product, I'm taking a loss on this one, but would risk a CIA build again. It seemed like a good deal, but not worth the frustration of a firearm that doesn't fire. I know others have reported good experiences. Add me to the list of CIA failures, and I hate having to say that about a local company I would have proudly supported.

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Reviewed By: janson r on 03/26/2014 Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
What a cool rifle! Just received my VZ and she is flawless mag looks almost new sling is new w the Czech crossed swords and date stamp of 1972. Bayo looks great along with the cleaning kit. Fast shipping as always and I couldn't be any happier with my purchase...I will def be back as buds is great to deal with :-)

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Reviewed By: Nathan G on 03/25/2014 Rating: 5 of 5 Stars! [5 of 5 Stars!]
Great buy overall for the money. The rifle came with a sling, bayonet, an un-issued cleaning kit and one VZ58 magazine. I'd recommend cleaning/lubricating the rifle before use. Ive currently run 10 mags (300 rounds) without ANY kind of malfunction. Only thing needed was an AK sight tool to adjust the front post for elevation. Best 5 rnd group was 2.5 MOA @ 100 yards with Red Army Standard 7.62x39 Thats pretty good for an iron sighted battle rifle.
Be aware that if you run back to back mags through it the foregrip will get HOT! You can also wrap the side folding stock with paracord to improve comfort and cheek weld. Overall a great rifle for a good price.

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