Help Choose My Next Rifle

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by JCooperfan1911, Jul 12, 2021.

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Which rifle would you buy?

Poll closed Oct 10, 2021.
  1. Windham Weaponry 20” Government AR ($950)

    15 vote(s)
    65.2%
  2. Czech Small Arms Vz58 ($2000)

    8 vote(s)
    34.8%
  1. JCooperfan1911

    JCooperfan1911 Member

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    Hello. I am struggling between two rifles for my next purchase. The usage would be for outdoor defense, plinking, and general recreational target shooting.

    Windham Weaponry 20” Government 5.56x45mm:
    Costs approx. $950 USD

    Pros:
    Better Irons Sights
    (Probably) Better Accuracy
    Cartridge has better range
    Parts & Magazines extremely available
    Rifle is far less expensive

    Cons:
    Ammunition is kind of expensive

    Czech Small Arms Vz58 7.62x39mm:
    Costs approx $2000 USD

    Pros:
    7.62x39mm Ammunition is half the cost of 5.56/.223
    Shorter and more compact
    Oddball fun factor and Euro Czechnology cool points
    I Already have a Large Stockpile of 7.62x39mm

    Cons:
    (Probably) Less Accurate
    Cartridge Has Less Range
    Proprietary Magazines
    Parts Availability limited compared to ARs
    Iron Sights are Inferior (in my opinion)
    Not Very Customizable
    Twice as Expensive as the Windham AR

    So yeah... on paper the Vz58 has more cons than the AR, is way more expensive, but it has an undeniable coolness and niftyness factor to it. Also 7.62x39mm ammo is trending at half the cost of anything in 5.56/.223 at the moment. It’d take a lot of shooting to make up for the difference in cost but everyone I talk to says the Vz58 is an incredible gun. Collectors value on them is soaring with all things milsurp and they are now very expensive rifles.

    The Windham 20” Government AR is a style of gun I’ve always wanted to get into. The efficiency will be there and I LOVE the peep iron sight system. It will outrange and outshoot the Vz58 with ease, be more ergonomic, be quicker to reload, but the ammo is expensive at least right now, trending at twice the cost of the cheap 7.62x39mm. Still this AR is only half the cost of the pricey Vz.

    Each has pros and cons. If you were in my shoes, which would YOU buy? I should mention my only other semi-auto rifles are two M1 Carbines and while I enjoy them, the cost of .30 Carbine ball is prohibitive right now and I’m looking for a true intermediate power level rifle to be used as my main fighting rifle and for general recreational use as well.

    Thanks!
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2021
  2. Tommygunn

    Tommygunn Member

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    Had to go Windham. Suits your needs for less $$$$.
     
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  3. 12Bravo20

    12Bravo20 Member

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    Windham Weaponry for sure. I used one of their A2 barrels for my A2 clone build and that thing shoots great even with surplus M855 ammo. And if the quality of parts matters, Windham uses the same hand guards as Colt and FN does on their military contract rifles.
     
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  4. troy fairweather

    troy fairweather Member

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    Windham the vz58 is cool but for the price you can buy the windham and a American made ak.
     
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  5. brunowbe

    brunowbe Member

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    I voted for VZ58, but $2000 is ridiculous. Put yourself on the mailing list at Atlantic and get one for way less, here’s the various models they sell with prices:
    https://atlanticfirearms.com/czechpoint?page=2
     
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  6. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

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    You want a handy, iron sighted carbine?

    The Gov't AR has some of the best iron sights ever put on a weapon.

    The CZ's are tolerable at best.

    It'll be much easier to score hits on smaller targets, further away with the AR.

    That $1050 difference buys alot of 5.56.
     
  7. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

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    From the choices, Wyndham wins.

    Now, to "solve" your 7.62x39 issue, you could look into, say, a CZ 527. Not a sef-loader, but a spiffy way to get those x39 downrange
     
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  8. MarshallDodge

    MarshallDodge Member

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    I think you can do better than Wyndham unless you want that particular configuration.

    Palmetto has their 18" free floated uppers in stock for $419, and my experience with two of them has been excellent.

    You could then purchase a complete lower or put something together with an upgraded trigger, LaRue MBT, etc.
     
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  9. entropy

    entropy Member

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    Get both! :D
     
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  10. Mn Fats

    Mn Fats Member

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    You made the Vz58 sound awful compared to the Windham lol. "Cool factors" wear out quickly for me. I voted Windham.
     
  11. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    JCooperfan1911: This might be a more "balanced perspective" than what was in the PMs about my Czechpoint VZ-58.

    Although my shooting with centerfire rifles is only out to 25, maybe 50 yards for the last several years, if you Highly prefer longer distance shooting and have the vision for good aperture sights (we both do),
    you appear to prefer the Windham.:scrutiny:

    My eyes are somehow still good for age 65, but targets beyond 25-50 yards no longer interest me. > Have nothing to prove < - it's all about simply using a gun with a reactive target; small or large empty juice bottles are perfect.
    Getting a really tight group isn't important to me, at all, to be completely frank.

    Is it just a low-IQ "redneck zen buddhist" enjoyment of :cool: never taking our gun rights for granted + pulling trigger+ watching bottles 'dance' on the berm?

    Hypothetical: If you somehow learned that you only had two months of shooting before vision/health issues prevented shooting --ammo costs Not a factor-- which rifle would you rather use?
    My shooting is basic fun as IF there were a very dim future.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2021
  12. JCooperfan1911

    JCooperfan1911 Member

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    I want a straight up plain KISS GI build with iron sights just like we had in the service, I have heard Windham is superb and better than Palmetto.

    After so much mulling, I do think I’m going to go with the AR. Prices on ammo should eventually come down and for my budget I’ll have more than enough 5.56/.223 to keep me busy. I want something with goof sights and good range and the Vz does seem to be lacking their. And the price difference is huge. If the cost of the Vz were more reasonable it would be even tougher of a decision.

    Thanks fellas!
     
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  13. JeeperCreeper

    JeeperCreeper Member

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    I love AKs and their relatives.

    Of those two, I'd go VZ. If I was forced to buy either and that's it.

    Which one is harder to get and which one is a dime-a-dozen? VZ gets the "rare" card.


    But honestly, I'd go with the Windham and ZPAP if I was allowed to change the rules.
     
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  14. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    JeeperCreeper:
    The ZPAP, you might know, had good results - after 5,000 rds. - with Rob Ski's AKOU test (Youtube) iirc, along with the VZ manufactured + assembled in the Czech Republic.
    VZ58: It must have been love, but it's over now...5,000 Rds Later! - YouTube

    If I had approx. $2,000 which I could Easily justify for any gun, it would still be a Czechpoint VZ-58. With sporadic US imports (despite Canada's insane new laws/less competition there) and growing awareness here and in Europe (?), our prices in the US might not come down much at all.

    Mine was acquired luckily months before the 2020 hysteria began. Slovenians and sport shooters in several other European countries can buy them - and do o_O. "Polenar Tactical" Youtube.
    Vz58 Operator - YouTube Note: They are not police or military - they are regular civilian sport shooters near Ljublana Slovenia.. ----Plenty of European competition exists to import these----
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2021
  15. 12Bravo20

    12Bravo20 Member

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    I have several AR's and all are setup differently. My two basic rifles are a M16A4 clone in 6.8 SPC (PSA barrel) and my A2 clone with the Windham barrel. And you are correct that sometimes it is hard to beat the basic A1/A2/A4. And Even though I wear bifocals, it is still fun to put rounds on the 300 meter target with the iron sights when them youngins with their fancy setups and scopes can't do much better.

    I forgot to mention that I use the detachable carry handle on the 6.8 A4 clone.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2021
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  16. BreechFace

    BreechFace Member

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    Windham and a Palmetto AK Gen 5 for the same price.

    I love CZ and AK's but $2,000 for a VZ58 is definitely inflated. Add to that proprietary magazines that one is definitely going to want to stockpile with current political winds, add some more money on top of the $2,000. I do think you would find the VZ58 to be capable of better accuracy than one can expect from typical combloc AK's, probably on par with the PSA AK's which have been shown to produce some pretty decent accuracy 1.75-2.25 MOA.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2021
  17. Idahou

    Idahou Member

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    Just got surplus vz 58, because here in Czech its cheaper than AR15.
    I would say the main thing is - its seriously "purpose" gun or you want some diffrent value? From your post it kinda looks like you are already decided, or was when you post it...
    AR is more reassonable choice when you looking in shop, but whats "outdoor defense"? If its distance bellow 250 meters i would say calibre diesnt matter
    Accuracy its not that diffrent, but yes, AR should be more accurate speaking in terms of very small or distant target in iron sight range (honestly - long range defence scenario with ironsights?)
    Magazines should be biggest issue, not so much if you stockpile, but SHTF scenario plays for AR
    Parts - well, which one? VZ 58 whitestand a lot of beating and if you will not run thousands rounds per short period of time, it should last. Problem could be in springs, guide rod, extractors and so, but somehow cant imagine that you could get it in US, even custom build. Also cant speak for others EU members here but i personally wouldnt mind to send some nonrestricted part (like springs and so...) if i would see topic here (but im also very lazy, so dont write me until its emergency :D ). Yet onec again - SHTF scenario plays for AR
    Iron sights arent that good as on AR, thats also correct, but it depends on scenario. Plinking or defending home, i would say doesnt really matter. But i would put some holo/prism sights on both
    "Not Very Customizable" thats more about what you want... it cant take folding stock, while AR dont and thats huge i would say. You can change hanguards, muzzle device, add picatiny, change pistol grip. But cant change barrel lenght, calibre...
    Price is ...price...

    Regarding of ammo. Dont know exactly situation in US, but there are still huge stockpiles of 7,62 in world (just bought 197X china) , but its price grows... but .223 going higher and higher too and its a question what will happen if US army switchs to 6.8 mm

    Reselling value is mayabe also something to consider. I guess AR would not hold its price as long as vz 58

    In the end - vz 58 is viable option, but its more collectors or "it makes me smile" gun

    First of all answer to yourself questin "Do i need or want another rifle?"
     
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  18. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

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    LoL. I know in my case that's like asking if I want another potato chip [:0]

    Pretty sure OP is trying to manage a desire for a new rifle while thinking of the ammo he has on hand.
     
  19. Idahou

    Idahou Member

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    Same here... but i have feeling, that OP wants vz 58 and just need some approval :D
     
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  20. MarshallDodge

    MarshallDodge Member

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    Do a little research on Windham. I would put them on equal ground with Palmetto's mid tier stuff but not their Premium line. Palmetto uses FN CHF barrels on their premium uppers.

    https://palmettostatearmory.com/psa-20-chf-1-7-a2-rifle-length-556-prem-ar15-upper-assembly-w-bcg-ch.html
     
  21. Ignition Override

    Ignition Override Member

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    Idahou:
    You Czechs and other “Europeans” ,—just a figure of speech—seem to be better with very direct and even humorous ways of using the English language than many of us.

    The word “approval” is rather original.

    I..." zeptejte se manzelky jeji opnion". Only my wife's opinion - not approval.
    Most of my gun cash has been from selling other guns.

    JCooperfan 1911:
    Has the “jury” decided on the trial verdict? :oops: :)
    Simply curious, and I'm Also wondering how long your heap of 7.62x39 ammo would last, if you choose a VZ. :scrutiny:
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2021
  22. JCooperfan1911

    JCooperfan1911 Member

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    Still very torn.

    I am seeing the black polymer stocked sporter CSA Vz58 for $1675 on GumBroker. Beaver bark stock sets for $130, so I could get the same setup for right at $1800.

    I want BOTH. The practical side of me says go AR but man this is a toughy!
     
  23. MarshallDodge

    MarshallDodge Member

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    Another option-

    All you need is a receiver and a carry handle
     
  24. greyling22

    greyling22 Member

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    If you've got the cash, I'd do the vz58. Sure it costs more, and is functionally probably an inferior firearm, but they have only been going up in price and down in availability. You will always be able to find an ar. The vz.... not so much. Remember when you could get one (or maybe it was a vz2008) for like $450? I still kick myself for not getting one of them. And the $200 feg hi-powers. D'oh!
     
  25. Idahou

    Idahou Member

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    Well, its mostly direct translation and its not much of figure of speech, more like litteral description :D Lucky for me, im anwering only to my bank account, which is sad, little, empty thing anyway

    Well, you dont need to buy all extra accesories for vz 58 right now, so you can spread that costs on longer time unit... Maybe plan vacation in Czech Republic for next year and get that accesories cheaper here :D

    Another thing to consider is if there will be some vz 58 avalaible in future or how it will grow on price...

    Still i think you want vz 58 badly, so mayabe try it somewhere and if you will like it - well, you will be more capable with rifle what you shoot and training a lot...
     
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