Author Topic: What Is a 75B Military?  (Read 16270 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Radom

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2784
  • HGWT
What Is a 75B Military?
« on: November 01, 2002, 10:15:43 PM »
What is a 75B MIL?
            At one time, this was by far the most frequently asked question on the entire CZ Forum.  Those days may have gone, but the 75B Mil probably introduced more people to CZ pistols than any other model.  (Yes, Im not forgetting the vz52, either!)  This may not really warrant its own sticky, but it is a subject close to my heart.  The 75B Mil was my first CZ pistol, and my attempts to find out more about it led me to the CZ Forum.  
            The 75B Military can be identified from a commercial 75B by the following criteria:
            1) Must be chambered in 9x19 caliber (aka 9mm Luger, 9mm Parabellum, etc.).
            2) Must have the black polycoat finish.
            3) Must have the distinctive thumb-rest style grips.  (CZ-USA calls these the CZ 75 ergonomical [sic] plastic grip).
            4) Should have come with one 15 round and one 10 round magazine (as opposed to two 10 round mags).  
            5) Must have either the number 96 or 99 in the oval behind the ejection port.  
            In 1997, CZ-USA first imported 75B pistols chambered in 9x19 (9mm Luger) bearing the designation 75B Military or 75B Mil in their printed literature.  These were sold to dealers at promotional prices.  For the consumer, this meant a lower MSRP (manufacturers suggested retail price) than the other 75Bs.  For example, the 2001 CZ-USA retail price list gives the MSRP of the 75B Mil as $429.00, while the standard or commercial 75B in 9mm, black polycoat, had a MSRP of $459.00.  As late as December of 2001, these pistols were routinely selling in the range of $299.99-$329.99.  The 75B Mil was particularly desirable because it also included one 15 round magazine, instead of a second 10 round magazine, and all this came at a lower price.    
            The first 75B Mils released by CZ-USA had this designation because they were actually over-runs from a large multi-year contract with the Turkish national military and police forces.  How these pistols came to be surplus is not known.  Obviously, the manufacturer must overproduce in order to guarantee delivery in a situation like this.  Also, a Turkish company, Sarsilmaz, received permission to manufacture a CZ 75 clone pistol at about the same time.  The reader may draw his or her own conclusions!  
            Identification problems arose with the 75B Mil for a number of reasons.  1) Nowhere on the outer cardboard box, printed literature included with the pistol, or the pistol itself did the words 75B Military appear!  2) For several years, people could identify a Mil by the production year (the two-digit number found just behind the ejection port).  All 96 9mm 75Bs in black polycoat that had been imported by CZ-USA were Mils, and vice versa.  This was no longer true by 2000 (see below).  3) Some unscrupulous dealers pulled the 15 round magazines and sold them separately.  
            By 2000, the demand for this promotional offer had outstripped availability of the true Turkish contract pistols.  At this time, CZ-USA began packaging "commercial" 75Bs as 75B Mils.  This is why some Mils are 1999 production pistols, rather than 1996.  These were packaged just like the "true Mils" (thumb-rest grips, 15 round magazine, etc.).  This is why you will sometimes see references to "commercial Mils" as opposed to "Turkish Mils," "96 Mils," etc.  The quality of external finish may be higher on the "commercial Mils."  Apparently, some of the '99 Mils are actually marked as a "75B Military" on the outer cardboard box.
            NOTE:  At one time, there was serious discussion as to whether one should buy a 75B Mil over a standard 75B.  Most people hated the thumb-rest grips, and they had to immediately purchase new grips for the pistol.  Since high quality 15 round 9mm magazines were still readily available at more or less pre-ban prices before 2001, the cost and inconvenience of buying replacement grips was considered significant.  In retrospect, thats hard to believe!  Today, a NIB 75B Mil usually brings every bit as much as a comparable 75B; sometimes they are even higher (because of the 15 round magazine).
The artist formerly known as FEG...