Author Topic: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?  (Read 2162 times)

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Offline 357MAGNOLE

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VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« on: September 22, 2021, 10:49:20 AM »
Good morning VZ lovers.

I'd like to hear some of your thoughts in regards to this topic. I have finished my VZ58 build, and I have found myself relatively impressed. She has been 100% reliable, more accurate then I thought and I'm considering utilizing this rifle to fill my role of SHTF primary defense rifle. The only down side I can think of is weight. She comes in at 10 lbs 4 ounces.

USN 2006-Present
CZ 455 Varmit Evolution .22 LR
CZ Scorpion EVO 3
CZ P10C 9mm
CSA VZ58 7.62x39
Dan Wesson ECO .45

Offline MeatAxe

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2021, 08:48:55 AM »
Good morning VZ lovers.

I'd like to hear some of your thoughts in regards to this topic. I have finished my VZ58 build, and I have found myself relatively impressed. She has been 100% reliable, more accurate then I thought and I'm considering utilizing this rifle to fill my role of SHTF primary defense rifle. The only down side I can think of is weight. She comes in at 10 lbs 4 ounces.




Interesting! What receiver and barrel did you use to build that?

Vz58s are lighter than even stamped AKs…maybe your furniture or optic / mount are relatively  heavy?

Offline Grendel

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2021, 09:20:31 AM »
It really comes down to ammunition availability and if you're going or staying. Ammo is heavy, man! The greatest rifle in the world (whatever that may be) is a club if you can't feed it. If you're stocked up on whatever you shoot, then you're golden. If you're bugging out, there's a limit to how much ammunition you can transport effectively.

A lot of people miss this when building their SHTF gun. It doesn't matter how many optics, trigger packs, magazines you have, how accurate it is etc if you can't shoot it.

That said, nice rifle you have there.
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Offline 357MAGNOLE

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2021, 10:13:08 AM »
MeatAxe

It's a CSA built rifle. The weight is definitely coming from a few additions. The adapter for the stock, the stock itself is probably 2-3x as heavy as factory. The optic mount and optic add a good bit. The optic is a prism scope so it's got a solid chunk of crystal in it. Sling and mounts don't add but an ounce or so at most but the muzzle device is solid and heavy.

Unloaded she comes in at about 8.5 lb
USN 2006-Present
CZ 455 Varmit Evolution .22 LR
CZ Scorpion EVO 3
CZ P10C 9mm
CSA VZ58 7.62x39
Dan Wesson ECO .45

Offline RSR

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #4 on: September 23, 2021, 02:52:47 PM »
MeatAxe

It's a CSA built rifle. The weight is definitely coming from a few additions. The adapter for the stock, the stock itself is probably 2-3x as heavy as factory. The optic mount and optic add a good bit. The optic is a prism scope so it's got a solid chunk of crystal in it. Sling and mounts don't add but an ounce or so at most but the muzzle device is solid and heavy.

Unloaded she comes in at about 8.5 lb

You probably have close to 2 lbs in that side rail, optic mount, and optic.  The CSA standard side rails alone weigh a half pound IIRC, and before rail mount and optic mounted.

Can't image the stock is responsible.  Magpul Yugo is 15oz and adapter is aluminum -- adapter almost certainly less than 4 oz or 1/4 lb, prob 1/2 that.  Factory stocks are also in the 1 lb range.  Folder is steel, and fixed uses all steel hardware isn't particularly lightweight being all wood or partially wood given polymer tech of the time.

For SHTF, my only suggestions from what I can see would to be add a weapon light, have a muzzle device that does a better job suppressing flash, and a backup stock since magpul hinge is polymer.

For lightened weight, look into a NEA or bonesteel handguard with micro red dot.  Get two of the top rails and just remove and replace as needed to swap out w/ your magnified optic.  And your magnified optic can also be removed and replaced as needed.  Would suggest looking into CSA lightened or RS Regulate DARS rail.

Offline MeatAxe

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #5 on: September 23, 2021, 03:05:57 PM »
MeatAxe

It's a CSA built rifle. The weight is definitely coming from a few additions. The adapter for the stock, the stock itself is probably 2-3x as heavy as factory. The optic mount and optic add a good bit. The optic is a prism scope so it's got a solid chunk of crystal in it. Sling and mounts don't add but an ounce or so at most but the muzzle device is solid and heavy.

Unloaded she comes in at about 8.5 lb

I see…

Check out the RS Regulate optics mount for the Vz58 - they are super light & compact but super strong with repeatable POA / POI after removal. They cost a bit more, but are well worth it.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2021, 03:10:12 PM by MeatAxe »

Offline RSR

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2021, 05:29:53 AM »
Just threw my VZ2008 w/ OE folding stock on scale and it weights 8 lb 5 oz.

NEA top rail w/ primary arms micro red dot w/ killflash weighs ~7 oz.
Weaponlight and mount weighs ~5 oz.

With both top rail and red dot removed and weaponlight removed it weighs ~7 1/2 lbs (~7 lb 8 oz), or roughly the weight of a 16" AKM. 

Modifications from standard at that weight are paracord wrap on factory stock, FAB galil ultra grip, zendl steel extended mag catch and bolt release, NEA aluminum lower handguard w/ 3 side rails mounted (1 long and 2 short and magpul/ergo ladder rail covers on two partial rails), magpul afg 2, gogun aluminum RS2 gas pedal, and CNCW steel vortex flash hider.

Without all that stuff, the Vz58 is basically at stripped M4 socom weight.
And given 7.62x39's roughly double recoil energy of .223 in similarly weighted weapons, there is a benefit to that greater weight.

FWIW, my lightest weight home defense AR15 16" carbine w/ ballistic advantage hanson .625 16" pencil barrel is at 7lb 3oz w/ weaponlight and and 1x vortex spitfire prism optic (and sling removed), so the Vz58 as configured above is just ~1lb and 15% heavier.  Now that AR is not the the lightest build possible, but lightest I consider prudent, and the optic and mount itself adds nearly a pound.
The vickers unpadded sling I have for it w/ Midwest Industries HD QD swivels weighs ~6oz, which closes the gap to ~12oz (or 3/4 lb) and 10%.
Point being, if you can get your weapon fully configured below 8 lbs, I think you're in the ballpark of what's reasonable and prudent.

Did some more searching and standard CSA side rail is ~5.5 oz, and skeltonized is ~3oz, so 2.5 oz or nearly 1/2 savings.  And I'd imagine the detachable optic mount would weight at least 5 oz again -- not seeing weight listed.
And again, my NEA top rail w/ micro red dot alone is just 7 oz and change, so easily a half pound of savings there.

Offline MadDuner

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #7 on: September 24, 2021, 07:11:12 AM »
Just be sure to keep your AK and VZ mags in separate piles....

Offline 357MAGNOLE

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2021, 08:38:08 AM »
Just threw my VZ2008 w/ OE folding stock on scale and it weights 8 lb 5 oz.


Then mine isn't really THAT far off. Was that with a loaded mag?

Yes I'm sure the optic mount, rail and glass add some weight. But have you tried finding the options you mentioned over the last year? I pretty much settled on the rail and mount. Although to be honest I didn't settle on the optic and I don't regret it at all. It's perfect, I mean PERFECT for me. I never thought I'd like a fixed power optic. 2x is just right for close up and out to a few hundred yards on torso sized targets. If you haven't checked one out, definitely give it a try.
USN 2006-Present
CZ 455 Varmit Evolution .22 LR
CZ Scorpion EVO 3
CZ P10C 9mm
CSA VZ58 7.62x39
Dan Wesson ECO .45

Offline 357MAGNOLE

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #9 on: September 24, 2021, 08:40:28 AM »
Just be sure to keep your AK and VZ mags in separate piles....
don't have to worry about it as I never got an AK. But that is a pro tip!
USN 2006-Present
CZ 455 Varmit Evolution .22 LR
CZ Scorpion EVO 3
CZ P10C 9mm
CSA VZ58 7.62x39
Dan Wesson ECO .45

Offline RSR

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #10 on: September 24, 2021, 07:34:00 PM »
Just threw my VZ2008 w/ OE folding stock on scale and it weights 8 lb 5 oz.


Then mine isn't really THAT far off. Was that with a loaded mag?

Yes I'm sure the optic mount, rail and glass add some weight. But have you tried finding the options you mentioned over the last year? I pretty much settled on the rail and mount. Although to be honest I didn't settle on the optic and I don't regret it at all. It's perfect, I mean PERFECT for me. I never thought I'd like a fixed power optic. 2x is just right for close up and out to a few hundred yards on torso sized targets. If you haven't checked one out, definitely give it a try.

No mag, loaded or unloaded.  Deleting that steel factory stock on my setup is the biggest opportunity I see for weight savings.  Looking at your optic mount and getting a skeletonized rail if you don't already have one (czechpoint has in stock) are the biggest weight savings I see on your rig.

IIRC, the aluminum front handguards weigh only as much if not less than beaver barf, so could potentially save some by running CNCW/Bonesteel handguards.

Compact prisms weigh about double a micro red dot 5-6 oz vs 11-12 oz, but potentially a lot more.  I'm a huge fan of the Vortex Spitfire 1x DRT -- that's the primary reason I run it. 
I like the primary arms 1-3x compact prisms in concept but I think the reticles are too small to be quick.  Their new 1x is bigger, but still too small IMO.
I understand the limitations of BDC reticles, which is why I really like the vortex strike eagle reticles w/ dual german and bdc -- just wish they offered in FFP. 

Vortex Spitfire 1x DRT:






PA Prism 2x:


New Strike Eagle:




Offline RSR

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #11 on: September 24, 2021, 08:37:38 PM »
*Benefit of FFP is that your reticle size increases along with magnification, so it makes the BDC reticles much more usable, especially once you get to at least 6x or 8x -- they're still a little small at 4x...

SWFA's premium 1-6 offering demonstrates this well -- I think they missed an opportunity to have german posts or t posts like they do in their comparable SFP scopes...  Despite, if this was in MOA or BDC instead of mils, I'd probably buy one...







Images from here: https://www.thetruthaboutguns.com/gear-review-swfa-ss-hd-1-6x24/
« Last Edit: September 24, 2021, 08:45:00 PM by RSR »

Offline 357MAGNOLE

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #12 on: September 25, 2021, 10:07:00 AM »
Really nice comprehensive post there RSR.

I appreciate it. I am a fan of SWFA products, had their SS 3-15x42 and just purchased (delivers Monday) their 2.5-10x32 with BDC reticle.

I really do like this PA GLX 2x Prism scope. It's plenty for me to be fast with but also really usable up to 400 yards.

I didn't know Vortex swapped the reticle in their Strike Eagle I'll have to look into it more.
USN 2006-Present
CZ 455 Varmit Evolution .22 LR
CZ Scorpion EVO 3
CZ P10C 9mm
CSA VZ58 7.62x39
Dan Wesson ECO .45

Offline jwc007

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #13 on: September 25, 2021, 03:15:47 PM »
Currently, my customized Vz2008 serves as my "go to" defense carbine, and I have plenty of Russian made 7.62x39mm to feed it with.


Custom Vz2008

I do have other Rifles and Carbines, such as an old Ruger Mini-14 and my old AR15A2 to choose from, but my Vz2008 has proven itself a very handy weapon.
I also have plenty of M193 and M855 ammunition on stock.  I am still working on the Mini-14 as an alternative, but we'll have to see if the Accu-Strut I'm going
to install on the Barrel helps accuracy, or not.  One thing in the Mini-14's favor is, it's very light.

The AR15A2 HBAR would be an option, were it not so long and heavy.


185 series Ruger Mini-14 w/Burris Scout Scope and Fiberglass Stock


AR15A2 HBAR

« Last Edit: September 25, 2021, 03:20:13 PM by jwc007 »
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Offline RSR

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Re: VZ58, Viable go to SHTF option?
« Reply #14 on: September 25, 2021, 06:43:18 PM »
Really nice comprehensive post there RSR.

I appreciate it. I am a fan of SWFA products, had their SS 3-15x42 and just purchased (delivers Monday) their 2.5-10x32 with BDC reticle.

I really do like this PA GLX 2x Prism scope. It's plenty for me to be fast with but also really usable up to 400 yards.

I didn't know Vortex swapped the reticle in their Strike Eagle I'll have to look into it more.

With the Vz58's ejection pattern, you're pretty much limited to fixed magnification optics or 1xs. 

I have micro red dots for weight and cowitness even though there's some blur to the dot due to astigmatism.  Vortex sits too high in low mount to cowitness and can't truly use irons accurately through any prism anyway...  Prob about where jwc007's sits.

Wasn't critiquing your choice -- just noting that there are tradeoffs with everything.

That SWFA with low mag and FFP is in the $1k ballpark I think.