I’ve owned and thoroughly enjoyed my CZ 527 Carbine for the last few years, but I haven’t had the opportunity to talk about it much here on the Lounge or on our YouTube channel. There’s plenty I could say about this rifle, but honestly, I’m not sure how many of you would actually care to hear it all. So, rather than write a long article or a 6-8 minute long video, I’ve tried to stuff as much info about the CZ 527 as I possibly could into a 60 second video. And just in case you want to know more about what I’ve learned from using this little carbine, I put together a quick pros and cons list below that includes some things I couldn’t fit into the video.
CZ 527 Carbine in 60 Seconds
Pros and Cons
Overall, I really like this rifle, and I’d hate to leave on a bad note, so I’m going to list the cons first, and then go out with the pros.
- Light strikes: The 7.62×39 version of this rifle has trouble igniting the primers on certain brands of ammo. Personally, I’ve experienced numerous light primer strikes on Fiocchi ammo, but I almost always run either Wolf, Tula, or Hornady, and those have never given me any problems.
- Action Screws: On a couple of occasions, the screws holding the action into the stock have worked their way loose, leading to significant accuracy problems. I make sure to tighten them down after every 100 rounds or so.
- Bolt Clearance: A lot of CZ 527 owners have complained about the lack of clearance for the bolt handle when mounting optics. The issue tends to pop up most often when trying to mount something like a 3-9x scope with low rings. However, even with lower power scopes, the bolt clearance is tight. While trying to run the bolt in a hurry, I’ve sliced open the side of my index finger on the Leupold’s magnification ring more times than I care to count.
- Safety: It’s backwards. Forward should be “fire” and rear should be “safe”, just like every other bolt gun I’ve owned. With a correctly oriented safety, I can push it off safe with my thumb while my index finger moves to the trigger. The CZ has it the other way around, and my thumb can’t reach the safety when it’s on “safe” to pull it back. I have to use my index finger instead, and that’s just awkward. Check out 0:35 in the video to see what I mean.
- Low Profile Magazines: There’s a lot of disagreement over the usefulness of detachable magazines on a bolt gun, especially when they protrude from the bottom of the action. But, the CZ’s magazines are as unobtrusive as possible for a magazine of this type. They add minimal bulk and allow for quick and safe loading and unloading of the rifle. And, at just $40 a pop, you can afford to buy a couple of spares.
- Handling: This is the attribute that experienced shooters seem to like best about the CZ 527. The overall balance is excellent, it points naturally, and it is really fun to use.
- Iron Sights: Not everyone appreciates them, but I like to see backup iron sights on a bolt gun. I’ll probably keep an optic mounted on the CZ 527, but there’s always a chance the optic will get knocked around and lose zero while I have it out. The iron sights on this rifle aren’t going to help me win any accuracy contests (there’s not even an elevation adjustment), but they’re very rugged and almost guaranteed to survive the kind of mishaps that might take a scope out of commission.
- Trigger: The factory trigger is impressive: only 3.5 pounds with minimal creep. By pressing the trigger forward, the set trigger option is activated, and the pull weight drops down to 1.5 lbs. Personally, I don’t care for the set trigger and never use it. It’s too light and not really necessary with such a good standard trigger.
- Build quality: It’s difficult to describe, but everything about this rifle oozes quality. You could find a better built rifle but probably not for under $1000. This is the kind of rifle I’ll use and abuse regularly, and it will still end up in the hands of my kids and grand kids.
- Micro Mauser action: Its smooth, reliable, and not any bigger than it needs to be to accommodate the 7.62×39 cartridge. The short bolt throw means the bolt can be run very quickly with minimal effort.
- Inexpensive Ammo: You could argue that .308 Win or .30-06 would make for a more useful “all around” rifle, but both 7.62×39 and .223 Rem are much cheaper to feed. There’s no way I would have been able to afford as much trigger time with this rifle if was chambered in one of the “big” .30 calibers.
CZ 527 Carbine Technical Specs
|Calibers||.223 Rem, 7.62×39|
|Twist Rate||1:9 (both calibers)*|
|Optic Mount||Integral 16mm scope bases|
|Sights||barrel-mounted open sights|
|Ammo Capacity||5 rounds, detachable box magazine|
|Measured trigger pull weight||3.5 lbs (1.5 lb when using set trigger)|
* – Current production CZ 527 Carbines in both .223 Rem and 7.62×39 have a 1:9 twist barrel but prior to 2014, the .223 Rem rifles had a 1:12 twist.