I've finally managed to gather up a few things through sifting through internet info, so I thought I'd put it all into one thread. DISASSEMBLY and REASSEMBLY Well, this weekend I took my CZ52 apart 100% only to note that I couldn't figure out how the hell to get the damn thing back together! Alas, Zeliard at SurplusRifle.com's Forums gave me a link to the answer, so I will share it with you! Just click here and read away I changed somethings in the directions for myself, and if your stuck on something.. well you can PM me and I can try to offer you a suggestion. Also, borrowing a phrase from pwrtool45, it pretty much took 3 men and a boy to reassemble, at least the damn sear spring was a major pain to get back in.. but it was worth it as mine did have some surface rust on the inside.. so a shout out to Zeliard and UncleJaque! Here is another field stripping guide that might help: http://www.alpharubicon.com/leo/cz52serger.htm MARKINGS We'll start with markings, there are more markings, but I'm not sure what they all mean, so you guys might be able to help me there: rid The location of where the pistol was built. Found following the serial number on the left side of the reciever. I'm not exactly sure on this one, I think it symbolizes the factory that the pistol was built at, but I am not 100% sure, so confirmation would be nice. VOZ(Vojensky Opravarensky Zavod - Military Repair Plant) Rearsenaled pistol with date of refurbish next to it. Stamped on the reciever cover plate. VOP (Vojensky Opravarensky Podnik - Military Repair Enterprise) Rearsenaled pistol with date of refurbish next to it. Stamped on the reciever cover plate. Crossed Swords Signifies a military pistol. Found stamped on the right side of the receiver, next to the slide stop pin. You will find the date of manufacture right next to the Crossed Swords, for example mine is "53". Z Decocker retro-fit. If you have this marking, your decocker SHOULD work. Mine has this stamp, but I still wouldn't trust it. No point in using it anyways, its a SA pistol. You'll find this "Z" stamped on the left side of the trigger guard, right where it meets the receiver(not near the slide lock). Circle with a T inside of it Signifies the barrel was proofed in the factory. It will be found on the outside of the chamber, and can be seen through the ejector port on a fully assembled pistol. This marking only applies to 7.62x25 Tok barrels. The 9x19 barrels with this marking were converted from 7.62x25. See below, as some European 9x19 barrels were re-proofed and found their way into the US. Lion/Date Prague Proof House markings, with the date the pistol was proofed. This marking is only found on converted import 9x19 barrels that were intended for the European market. Import converted 9x19 barrels intended for the US were NOT re-proofed. Some of the re-proofed converted barrels were however imported into the US. Dots On various parts of the Model 52, you can find evidence of Rockwell hardness testing. Most noticably on top of the slide. This testing was to certify the hardness of the metal parts, and many comericial manufacturers still do this, except much more discretly than the Czech military did. Some parts may have more than 1 dot, which simply means the part failed to past the second time and so on. The tests are performed with a punch of known hardness, and if the punch does not leave a dot, then the part is harder than the punch. Some people have MISTAKEN the dots(which are nearly perfect circles punched into the metal) for accuracy markings. This is not true. So called "slash marks" on the barrel This has been brought up, and I'm going to call it debunked. This is not an indication of accuracy. More than likely, it is just a scratch, as the depth of these marks is nothing more than scraping finish off. OTHER INFORMATION Early development of the M52 started shortly after World War 2, as a 9x19mm Pistol. However, since Czechoslovakia was given to the Soviets to adminster and govern after World War 2, the Soviets put pressure on the Czech government to produce their weapons in the same chamberings as other Soviet controlled nations. At the time, the standard issue pistol round was the M30 7.62x25 "Tokarov". The 7.62x25 "Tokarov" is a spin off of the 7.63mm Mauser. Roughly the same dimensions, infact, the 7.63 Mauser can be fired in a gun that can shoot 7.62 Tok, though I wouldn't try it the other way around, as the 7.63 Mauser was a much lower pressure round. The reason behind this apparently, was after the revolution the Soviet Union had several Mauser C96's chambered in the 7.63 Mauser cartridge, as well as all the machinery to produce the ammunition. The Soviets had good results with the 7.63 Mauser. So it was revamped to a very similiar round in 7.62mm(the bullets of the 7.62x25 are the exact same diameter as those used in the 7.62x54, though obviously not as heavy), with similiar dimensions. The Model 52 had some design flaws, and eventually a program was started to inspect and performance maintence as needed. Every M52 that had been arsenal refurbished had a VOZ or VOP stamped on it, as well as the date. The most common maintence performed at the arsenal was staking pins that would back out fairly easily(many of you will notice your pistols will have this done to them, mine has only the slide stop pin). The most unusual feature of the M52 was the action. Two rollers would interlock the barrel and the slide together during the first stage of each shot, and recoiled back together a short distance. After that, the rollers would "roll" along and unlock the barrel and slide, causing the slide to travel all the way backwards and eject the spent casing. This feature is shared with many German guns, including the MG42 and the H&K P9s. Saftey appears to be something that had some thought put into it, as this pistol features: a firing pin block, decocker(though rather useless in my opinion, and isn't worth the risk), and thumb saftey. The firing pin block appears very effective to me, as it is only disengaged when the saftey is off and the trigger is pulled(and held, similiar to the Ruger transfer bar system in this respect), or when the decocker is used(and that is one of the big flaws in my opinion, as with a faulty decocker the pistol can easily go off then). As part of a scheme to sell more pistols, before being exported to the US and other countries(see above in markings), some of the 7.62x25mm barrels were converted to 9x19mm. The 9x19 barrels exported to Europe had a Lion stamped on them to show they had been re-proofed, as well as a date showing when they had been proofed(see above in markings). I believe these converted barrels are still considered C&R, since its the original part, but don't quote me on that(we know how the BATFE can be). If anyone can prove this, let me know. Other Issues I've noticed what CAN be a serious reliability issue, though if a magazine is fully inserted this won't be an issue. When working the saftey repeated without a magazine inserted, the slide stop spring can work its way out, as it is held in by the magazine! A rather stupid idea, but yeah. Since the slide stop and saftey use the same spring, the saftey will then feel limp. I've also gotten the spring to work its way out by operating the slide stop manually without a magazine inserted, and by racking the slide multiple times without a magazine inserted. DO NOT USE THE DECOCKER AT ALL ON YOUR CZ M52, EVEN IF IT HAS HAD THE RETROFIT. IF YOU MUST USE THE DECOCKER, ONLY DO SO WITH THE PISTOL POINTED IN A 100% SAFE DIRECTION AND AT SOMETHING THAT CAN TAKE BEING SHOT The safest way to decock the M52 pistol is to remove the magazine, rack the slide to unchamber the round, double check to make sure the chamber is clear, put the pistol on fire, hold the hammer and pull the trigger simaltaneously, and ease the hammer down. Doing this will protect your firing pin from damage, as activating the decocker disables the firing pin block. The hammer will not come in contact with the firing pin if you ease it down. Basic rundown of the gun Capacity: 8 rounds, single stack Operation: Single action Caliber: 7.62x25mm standard, some barrels converted to 9x19 Wieght: 2.09 pounds Length: 8.22" Barrel Length: 4.72" The CZ M52 was manufactured from 1952 till 1954, estimates put production at around two hundred thousand. The state owned company, Ceska Zbrojovka a.s. Uhersky Brod, was responsible for production. You can find out more on the history of Ceska Zbrojovka a.s. Uhersky Brod here. Current prices run around $100-150, depending on where and how you get the pistol. Some pistols are original, others are refinished in a black or blue. The original Czech military finish was a grayish color. Magazines can be pricey, general under $20 is a GOOD price for one in good shape. Surplus ammo is very plentiful, but tends to be corrosive. So if you shoot surplus, make sure to clean the bore out with hot soapy water or an amonia based cleaner to nuetralize the salts. CZ M52 Buyers Guide Well I've been having a lot of people ask questions about them, so I figured I might try to help. Originally, the M52 was made with a grayish type finish. However, facing slumping sales importers(and even some distrobutors was my understanding) had refinished the pistols with excessive finish wear in a blue or black type color. These pistols WERE NOT originally black or blue, and they were NEVER refinished at the arsenal for such colors. Example of an original finish M52: Generally speaking, most of these pistols SHOULD be in excellent shape. However, some did see service and were quite well used. One thing pointing to a lot of use will be wear on the finish, or having been refinished on import in black or blue. Another factor would be corrosion in the bore. Havn't seen to many of these, but they are out there. Check frame to barrel fit. This should be TIGHT on an unissued gun. Frame to slide fit should be decent, but this doesn't effect accuracy like it would in a 1911. If you can, field strip before buying. Check out the rollers and the part of the barrel they are on. If the rollers are still round, that is a good sign that it was never issued(the ones that were issued were recylced many times and saw a lot of use). If the rollers are loosing their round, check that they aren't damaging the barrel, though personally I wouldn't bother with a gun that had damaged rollers, means it's seen a TON of use either or was abused. Next check and see if the firing pin is intact. I normally stick the eraser end of a pencil down the bore and pull the trigger. Pencil should move, and if it does, firing pin is not broke. Administer this same test to see if the decocker works(don't trust the decocker even if it does work). Now the final thing I check is magazine and slide stop function. This is really simple. First insert an EMPTY magazine. Rack the slide, it should lock back. Now if it doesn't lock back either there is a problem with the magazine or the slide stop. One of my pistols had a slide stop that was missing some metal and wouldn't lock open on the last shot(which is bad with a weak firing pin). Drop the magazine. Does the slide slam forward? If so, this is a good indication that either the slide stop is out of spec(not enough catching the follower), the mag spring is weak, or the follower is out of spec and/or worn. The final(and to me one of the things that makes or breaks a deal on an M52) is whether the serial numbers on the slide, barrel, and frame match. I've seen quite a few of them cobbled together from parts, and to be honest, I wouldn't expect much from a franken pistol, especially a combloc one. Other stuffs.. Feel free to copy, post this elsewhere, do whatever. My only request is that this information IS NEVER used for profit for anyone. I'll edit this with any more info, so if you find out something that isn't here, PM me! If you've got tips for trouble shooting, and would like to share with all of us, PM me and I'll add them!