CZ527 .223 review, and questions about chambering issues.......


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MIL-DOT
November 11, 2012, 10:50 PM
I recently picked up a new CZ 527 in .223/5.56 from Buds. Ordering sight-unseen,and having never handled one before, I didn't fully know what to expect. I was a little afraid it would feel TOO tiny and lightweight, but it doesn't at all, it feels very well proportioned, and shoulders up very nicely.The walnut stock looks outstanding, with a nice amount of flame and figuring ( not nearly as plain as on the CZ452 I got from them a couple years ago) , the recessed crown is also a nice touch. This is also my first experience with a set trigger, and me and my buddies all liked that a lot, though it took some getting used to.
Anyway, before scoping it, I took it to a shooting buddy's house to test out the iron sights. I gave the mag innerds and the bolt a spray of Rem-Oil, and loaded 5 rounds of Lake City xm193, and tried to chamber a round, and it promptly jammed up on me. After considerable fiddling, we tried loading with only 3 or 4 rounds, and often got better results, but it was still pretty sticky, and would occasionally jam.
By "jam", I mean the round seems to slam into the feed ramp but doesn't slide into the chamber. I think the only times it's chambered consistently have been with only one or two rounds in the magazine.
I'm wondering if I could have magazine issues, or if it's likely a problem at the feed ramp? Or, is this simply a break-in issue? Or something else entirely? I also notice that it (sometimes) respondes to more force, but that doesn't feel right. I'm used to the gentle,smooth cycling of my Tikka .308, but so far,this rifle doesn't seem to respond to that too well.
After installing a Bushnell 4200 Elite 3-9x40 that I already had lying around, my buddies and I took turns shooting from a sandbag rest on our host's porch, with targets at exactly 50 yards. We were mostly shooting at a sheet of carboard covered with those orange or black nickel-sized decals that come on the edges of those big decal targets from wal-mart,or small circles drawn with a sharpie pen. The 554 gr. xm193 was generally giving us respectable little groups. One freind shot a particularly tight group and asked again if that was really just mil-spec surplus stuff, happily surprised at the results he was getting.
But then, just for heck of it, expecting nothing at all, I pulled out a box of 62 grain Silver Bear that I had left over from my Mini-14 phase, and that stuff was incredible !! I was pretty consistently putting 3-round groups completely inside the nickel-sized decals. I had expected the 1/12 twist barrel to not respond too well to the heavier 62gr. ammo, and I sure didn't expect the steel cased Rusky stuff to noticably outperform my 'Merican brass-cased stuff, but this rifle seemd to really like it a lot, which is cool, 'cause I think i have about 20+ boxes left.
So anyway, if anyone can offer any enlightement or advice on my chambering issues, I'd really appreciate it........

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HOOfan_1
November 11, 2012, 11:00 PM
I've had feeding problems on my CZ 550, but my problems occur when there is only 1 round left in the magazine. The bolt face doesn't engage the round and slips over it. Then the round starts to feed and catches on the feed ramp. I've been meaning to contact CZ about it.

MIL-DOT
November 11, 2012, 11:10 PM
Thanks HOOfan, I just did some Googling, and it seems there have been numerous similar issues that have been largely attributed to the magazine. Some folks recommended opening the feed lips a tiny bit, but some recommended tightening them a tiny bit, and some recommended polishing them a tiny bit.:rolleyes:
It looks like a lot of folks have just contacted CZ customer service and returned their mag for replacement.
I think I'll wait and see if I hear from anyone else, and probably go shoot it again next weekend, and see how it goes.

stubbicatt
November 12, 2012, 09:29 AM
OP, 1st make sure it is a 223 magazine. They make several rifles on that miniature action, and several magazines. The 204 magazine seems to work a bit better, as the feed lips are not as long from the case head going forward and rounds just strip a bit better.

I have 3 or 4 527 223 magazines that worked flawlessly in my rifle, before it was stolen. Each of them required a little fettling to get to work right. Initially, they don't put a radius on the forward edge of the feed lips. I always go to work on that with a file so that it is rounded and doesn't cut me when I'm loading the magazine. Then I work on smoothing over the edges on those magazines.

Oddly, years ago when I bought the rifle, the brand was not well known here in the US. The magazines were really super. The last one I bought was not up to the quality of the first one I bought with respect to fit and finish.

It is easy to see where the mags are hanging up, just load it up with dummies, or take the firing pin assembly out of your bolt to avoid an unpleasant surprise, and just press the bolt forward slowly. You can look in the feedway and see what the issue is.

milkybar
November 13, 2012, 06:54 AM
I have a CZ 527 in .223 and still have problems with the magazine feed.The guys from where I bought it lightly sanded the feed lips, its better but still hard to chamber a round with a full mag, with 3 in the mag it is easier. The sanding of the feed lips has eliminated cutting/scribing into the rounds and therefore has less resistance. Next problem is accuracy.

MIL-DOT
November 13, 2012, 09:23 AM
Thanks guys, I may have to resort to a little surgery. I just heard back from CZ's customer service. To their credit, they did get right back to me, but the remedy leaves a little to be desired,IMO. I guess it could be worse,you be the judge,here's the entirety of the response.......:rolleyes:

Mark,
You may need to spread the magazine feed lips very slightly at the front of them. A little goes a long way. If you wanted you can send the mag in for us to check out for you.

Thanks,

Neale Flynn CZ-USA GUNSMITH

1-800-955-4486 x 336

CZ-USA

3327 N 7th ST TRFY
Kansas City, KS 66115

Barr
November 13, 2012, 01:27 PM
I had to send back a CZ 550 American in .308 Win due to the magazine dropping from the gun under recoil. They paid for shipping both ways and did a superb job fixing the issue. It helped reinforce my good impression of this company.

milkybar
November 13, 2012, 04:40 PM
If you need to spread the lips to get it to feed right then so be it but I would be putting this in their hands in case you over do it and have a shagged mag thats no good to anyone. Either way in my opinion if you buy a cz you should not have to do anything as they are usually flawless, although it seems the 527's are a little clunky in the mag region. good luck let me know how it pans out.

MIL-DOT
November 13, 2012, 05:09 PM
Either way in my opinion if you buy a cz you should not have to do anything as they are usually flawless...

Oh yeah, I agree completely, this is total bulls***. They should have fallen all over themselves apologizing and taking steps to fix this, but instead I get a recommendation to take a pliers to the magazine of a brand new,high-end rifle. That's the advice I'd expect to get to fix a friggin' Somali AK-47 !! :rolleyes:
But they did offer another option: "If you wanted you can send the mag in for us to check out for you." Well,Yay,Hooray, thanks a pant-load, but I ALREADY KNOW IT'S SCREWED UP.
I wasn't too P.O.'d earlier, but the more I think about this, the more dis-satisfied I am with CZ.

viking499
November 13, 2012, 08:40 PM
oops.....

MIL-DOT
November 13, 2012, 09:01 PM
Then sell it if you are not happy and get something else that will make you happy.

I guess no other "high end" equipment or devices ever have problems.......

That's why you buy an expensive automobile, because you never have to take it back to the shop.

Well,thanks for those useless and obvious observations,jerk.:cool:
As I clearly stated in the OP, I'm largely happy with the rifle, I'm just annoyed (justifyably) at having a serious problem with something that should've long been worked out, and at CZ's less than enthusiastic attempt to rectify it.
Now why don't you run along, there's got to be an "AR vs. AK" thread somewhere that could use your clever insight.

viking499
November 13, 2012, 09:26 PM
oops again.....

milkybar
November 14, 2012, 03:15 AM
Im fairly certain that neither MILDOT or myself are trashing CZ, we are just saying that in the past we have both bought and loved CZ's due to there flawlessness, not only in operation and accuracy but for pricing as well and have bought our current rifles in CZ due our past experiences. Im sure we all agree that CZ has great CS, all were saying is that the 527 for some reason has a few issues that need ironing out, hence the forum where we can ask like minded people if they too have had any probs and what they have done to best combat them. Brrr is it cold in here?

milkybar
November 14, 2012, 03:32 AM
No offense intended Viking499. For some of us this is the only place where we can bounce info off ppl and find a solution for our problems, not to dig at ppl for their obvious frustration. If you search the net the CZ 527 has many questions in regards to magazine feeding probs and so far the only solution is to wet and dry the feed lips of a brand new mag or take to them with a set of pliers. Like I said no offense intended.

stubbicatt
November 14, 2012, 05:13 AM
Name calling isn't very high road.

Sigh.

viking499
November 14, 2012, 09:14 AM
My fault for not being very "High Road". Comments removed.

MIL-DOT
November 14, 2012, 10:35 AM
Aw shucks guys, I'm about to bust out cryin' here' :D. I'll apologize as well for any percieved low-road-ish behavior. And Milkybar is correct, I wasn't trying to trash CZ, I was just expressing some annoyance at what I felt was a wishy-washy response, that basically put the entire ball in my court.
I mean, this is a legitimate issue, one that they're already aware exists. It's not like I'm whining at them because the wood grain isn't as pretty as I'd hoped.
As it stands, I'm unsure what's the best course of action. Should I try a little home-surgery ? And if it doesn't work, and I send it back to them, will they say, "sorry, but you obviously wrecked this magazine with a pliers"?
I read one report while googling the issue, where the guy said CZ sent him another magazine.....that still had the same issue.
So anyway, have any of you 527 owners tried to fix the mag yourself? If so, any specifics would be appreciated, before I dive in. I should check You-Tube, heck, there might be a tutorial on it,LOL !!

milkybar
November 14, 2012, 04:26 PM
MILDOT: I emailed CZ in the states and they said that because I'm from OZ I had to take it back to place of purchase.(which makes sense). I rang the gun shop and they asked me to take the mag in so it could be looked at. They simply took it apart, sanded the lips with wet and dry to round the edges, re-blued it and put it back together. While this has helped it is still hard to operate with a full mag. I'm no gun smith but it seems the mag spring is too strong and the resistance of the round sliding (not slicing like it was) against the mag lips is too great, when I have 3 or less rounds in it, it does seem to operate better. Either way if I were you and to avoid further disappointment I would not be undertaking the job myself and would be placing the responsibility in their hands. Just curious MILDOT, with a full mag if you slide a round forward by pushing the rear of the bolt instead of using the bolt handle is it any easier? also are the lips of your mag gouging the side of the round?

MIL-DOT
November 14, 2012, 05:55 PM
Thanks for the suggestions milkybar, 'cause they seemed to make a difference !! I took the rifle out in the backyard (we're semi-rural, but still have houses in the vicinity) and sat facing a big dirt hill, and started playing around with it. I fully loaded the magazine and tried to chamber one by pushing on the back of the bolt, as you suggested. Every time I did that, it chambered smoothly ( VERY smoothly,in fact.) I re-loaded the magazine till it was full, and tried to chamber normally by pushing the bolt handle, and sometimes it worked, but at least half the time, it got stuck, as before.
Interestingly,I also tried to push the bolt from the rear ( rather than the handle) on one of the stuck rounds, and it would then chamber smoothly.
So then, I tried to alter the pressure I was applying on the bolt handle ( keep in mind, I was only cycling the first 1-3 rounds,the ones with the most mag-spring tension, then I would re-load the magazine to full, and start again from there.) Normal pressure on the bolt handle tends to push the bolt outward, away from the rifle,and off-center a bit, and this seemed to be a factor in the malfunction. After discovering that the rifle would chamber consistently when the bolt itself was pushed from the rear, I tried to mimic this pressure using the handle. Basically, I pushed the handle inward,towards the rifle, as I was simultaneously moving it forward into the chamber ( I hope that makes sense).Anyway, this seemed to work,as well. It's not how one would intuitivley work the action,but it seems to (more or less) fix the problem, as does just pushing the bolt from the rear.
And yes, the rounds do get scratched by the magazine. Not deeply scarred, but noticable scratches. I'm reluctant to start monkeying around with the mag, since I can't be sure they're the problem. I'd like to get this out to our range and do some live firing, and have my buddies cypher on this, as well.
Anyway, thanks again,bro............:)

milkybar
November 14, 2012, 08:13 PM
All good MILDOT. good to hear there is some progress. You really need to concentrate when cycling being mindful not to push the bolt off axis. Like you said you would not normally have to be so anal when trying to chamber a round. I'd still send it back. when the lips are sanded round and smooth and re blued to original condition you will find a difference in friction. Good luck at the range

fireman 9731
November 14, 2012, 10:36 PM
My 527 carbine in 7.62x39 had feeding issues at first. The first round would feed fine, the second one would pop out of the magazine, the third one fed perfectly, the fourth and fifth one were sitting at an upward angle and the bolt would just ride over top the cartridges.

I called CZ, hoping they would just send me a new magazine. Instead they wanted me to send the whole rifle in. I declined, knowing it was just a magazine issue. I ended up tweaking the magazine spring and smoothing out the feed lips. Its been flawless since. I love my rifle, but CZ let me down. A brand new $700+ rifle should function without extra work on my part.

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