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Thread: Zastava m85

  1. #1
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    Zastava m85

    Have been looking for a 7.62x39 bolt gun for a while. Was kind of settled on waiting for a Ruger American. Now a Zastava-Serbia M85 (the old interarms mini markX) in new condition popped up on T/M and on impulse I hit buy now. Have since read few reviews on these and most reviews seem to be from around 2006 - 2012 and are not great with sticky/ rough bolts, average to below accuracy and a tendency to break extractors, that you can`t replace. I see GC still advertises them so I`m hoping they have improved. Or have I probably bought a lemon?
    Input from someone who has one even in 223 would be appreciated. If I still had my semi I wouldn`t be in this predicament.

  2. #2
    Member Micky Duck's Avatar
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    well let me put a different opinion out there
    they are awesome rifles
    I own two of them
    one in .223 one in .308
    both Ive rebedded,the .223 with a hot glue gun 5min job (18 years on its still doing good) the .308 got the works,a Nathan Foster bedding kit used.
    both shoot better than I can..the .223 will be half inch if I do my bit,the .308 doesnt get on paper often but it was sub inch last time I sighted it in
    rough bolt....set infront of telly and work the plurry thing for 15mins at a time over a week...smooths it out well...sure its never going to be sako smooth buts its better than a norinco by a country mile...and they work ok too if you dont baby them.
    breaking extractors is (I believe ) common if you take a mauser action and single feed round then force bolt to override rim rather than mag feed...never been an issue for me....and sometimes I will single feed a round in.
    dont over full the mag....they fit one more round than they should and dont feed it well...
    I cant see me ever selling the .223,the .308 was aquired in a horse trade ,didnt need it as such ,already owning a poohseventy and a shorty bush hobbits bush rifle...BUT its sort of grown on me being long and heavy makes it soft to shoot,the couple of animals its been pointed at in anger have all fallen over quite dead so it may stay in my possession for ever too.

  3. #3
    Member Micky Duck's Avatar
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    oh and my .223 has shot hundreds of wallabies,a great number of them on the run...didnt need a semi to do that,you get REALLY quick on the bolt when you dont baby it.
    enjoy it.
    Tasbay and xtightg like this.

  4. #4
    Member Marty Henry's Avatar
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    Like micky duck said they are seriously underrated. The original factory was equipt with machinery from brno. Mines a 1999 marked CZ Zastava Yugoslavia high gloss blueing etc, the later ones marked Serbia lack a bit in the finish, the bolt on mine is polished and runs smooth. The extractors arent a proper control feed mauser so rim over isnt a problem in my opinion.
    Unfoutunatly the distributers leave a bit to be desired.
    57jl and Micky Duck like this.

  5. #5
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    Totally agree,don't baby them when working the bolt.Very small bolt handle so use the palm rather than grasping the bolt.They smooth out with use.Push the floor plate release right home to ensure good lock up or be prepared to be picking up your rounds off the ground.Triggers are adjustable and some can be set.My older 223 has no set but my 7.62x39 has,I will at some point swap them over but to be honest the 223 is fine as it is.They are accurate when fed what they like.Both have lovely wood and look far more expensive than the $ I paid.And having a floor plate as opposed to a detachable mag are far nicer to carry.Use it and you will see.
    Marty Henry and Micky Duck like this.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by rewd View Post
    Totally agree,don't baby them when working the bolt.Very small bolt handle so use the palm rather than grasping the bolt.They smooth out with use.Push the floor plate release right home to ensure good lock up or be prepared to be picking up your rounds off the ground.Triggers are adjustable and some can be set.My older 223 has no set but my 7.62x39 has,I will at some point swap them over but to be honest the 223 is fine as it is.They are accurate when fed what they like.Both have lovely wood and look far more expensive than the $ I paid.And having a floor plate as opposed to a detachable mag are far nicer to carry.Use it and you will see.
    How does your 7.62x39 like surplus steel cased ammo?

  7. #7
    Member Marty Henry's Avatar
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    Forgot about the ajustable trigger good as a timiny any day.
    Tasbay likes this.

  8. #8
    Member Micky Duck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tasbay View Post
    How does your 7.62x39 like surplus steel cased ammo?
    dont do it our Deidre....... yellow box norinco yes,hornady steel case with sst projectile HELL YES but chinasport..yeah nah, we had a round with hunk of case folded back inside the neck.the pressure of that round going off and unfolding that piece out must have been horrific. case was double thickness on one side.
    barnaul seems to be good stuff too,feels/sounds hot.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Micky Duck View Post
    dont do it our Deidre....... yellow box norinco yes,hornady steel case with sst projectile HELL YES but chinasport..yeah nah, we had a round with hunk of case folded back inside the neck.the pressure of that round going off and unfolding that piece out must have been horrific. case was double thickness on one side.
    barnaul seems to be good stuff too,feels/sounds hot.
    Well that's good ,its Norinco yellow and green box`s I have from way back in the early 1990`s maybe even late 1980`s

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    Agree entirely.But Russians no longer supplying steel cases to Hornady.The old grey boxed norinco fmj and hornady sst run fine.BUT the green boxed norinco soft points(yeah right)every one ejection by cleaning rod

  11. #11
    Member Micky Duck's Avatar
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    Ive got a funny feeling the chinasport was green boxed too. please check necks before use.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by rewd View Post
    Agree entirely.But Russians no longer supplying steel cases to Hornady.The old grey boxed norinco fmj and hornady sst run fine.BUT the green boxed norinco soft points(yeah right)every one ejection by cleaning rod
    The stuff I have here are all solids. I remember the Norinco and China Sport soft point ammo. Could never get the stuff to group so flicked it off cheap.

  13. #13
    Member Boaraxa's Avatar
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    Iv got one , i like it , its a nice looking rifle , its shoots ok around 1.5 inch group at 80m with Barnaul i haven't tried anything else about the only issue would be the bolt handle its really close to the scope when working the action .
    The Green party putting the CON in conservation since 2017

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    I don't know about the short action models but I had a M70 Mauser action and it was very accurate, the bolt was cluncky but very well machined. was well worth the money.

  15. #15
    Member gadgetman's Avatar
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    You guys are dreaming if you think these budget rifles can shoot. I have no plans to get rid of either of my two any time at all. My 223 shoots 11-13mm three shot groups with boring repedity. Also have an M70 in 7mmRM.
    Micky Duck likes this.
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