Blinged Out North Korean ZB, AK and CZ 75 Clone

    I understand, and appreciated, blinged out and chromed guns on parade, but they just look silly when used in exercises by soldiers who just looked like they stepped off a messy hay ride.

    The machine gun is a clone of the Czech ZB vz. 26, a gun developed in the 1920s. The ZB vz. 26′s most famous clone is the Bren Gun used by Britain and some of her allies during WWII. Back then it was classed as a light machine gun. Today, classifying it is harder. Its small magazine, just 30 rounds, restricts its use as a General Purpose Machine Gun, but it fires full power medium caliber cartridges (.303, 7.62x51mm, 7.92x57mm et. al.) and is the same weight as modern GPMGs like the M240L and a lot heavier than most LMGs.

    Note the engraving on both the stock and the rifle itself. On the stock and pistol grip there appear to be flowers. I am not so sure I would want flowers engraved on my rifle.

    I think that this AK is a Type 88 (Nork AK-74 clone). Even the magazine contains some embelishing.

    Now this photo is especially interesting. The reader who emailed us the photo asked if that pistol is a CZ75 clone. I believe he is correct. I have never seen photos of the North Koreans with this pistol, but I have heard that they had a clone (or a clone of the Chinese CZ-75 clone, the Norinco NZ-75). The officers rank insignia is confusing and does not match the only reference I have for North Korean insignia, the USMC NK Handbook published in 1997, but my best guess is that he is a Senior Colonel (equivalent to an Brigadier General / O-7).

    [Hat Tip: China Defense]

    [ Many thanks to Albi for emailing us the link. ]

    Steve Johnson

    I founded TFB in 2007 and over 10 years worked tirelessly, with the help of my team, to build it up into the largest gun blog online. I retired as Editor in Chief in 2017. During my decade at TFB I was fortunate to work with the most amazing talented writers and genuinely good people!