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Posted: 2/24/2002 7:24:20 AM EDT
I am considering putting a Z-M conversion on my pre-ban lower, does anyone have any experience with these? How do they shoot what are the benefits (besides looking really cool). Any info you guys can give would be helpful. Thanks in advance. Gary
Link Posted: 2/24/2002 7:29:06 AM EDT
their are 3 benifits

1. it looks cool

2. it folds (buffer moved over barrle)

3. it looks cool

some guys like them, some say their not as reliable. if i had one preban, it wouldnt be a ZM
Link Posted: 2/24/2002 7:32:06 AM EDT
I hear they are great. It uses a different gas system, so it is very reliable. Plus you eliminate the buffer tube so you can have a complete FOLDING stock. If you can afford the $1600 for just the upper/stock, then go for it!! I know I can't afford it!

www.zmweapons.com/index.htm
Link Posted: 2/24/2002 10:05:28 AM EDT
It's accurate, compact but a bit heavy, the folding stock is mostly to blame for its additional weight, also the stock is made of metal, in freezing colt it might stick to your face. ZM says the op-rod system virtually eliminates muzzle climb, I find that compared to a regular AR it's not more or less, I'm sure it does reduce it a bit. The gas system is different, but it still blows gas on the bolt, so don't think it's a cleaner system like AR180 or G36.
With the stock folded, it's a few inches shorter than an M4 with identical length barrel (14.5" plus flash suppressor), here's a comparison:
Link Posted: 2/24/2002 11:10:47 AM EDT
Thanks for the pic Duffy. Until I got a look at the pic you just posted, I wanted to do the same to my AR. Now that I look at it, I think I might just pass. With the stock folded, the user would be unable to slap the bolt release with their palm after slapping in a fresh mag. They would have to poke at it instead. While it is nice to have the option to fold the stock and it certainly looks darned cool, I think that the ability to smack the bolt release with my rather hairy palm is too much to give up. Out of curiosity, is the gas system adjustable ala FAL? That might change my mind a bit on this subject...

I would like to see these rifles you have stacked up against each other in a no-clean slugfest. I want to see how many rounds each of your babies will eat until one of them chokes. It would be an interesting test to see which system is more reliable on a given ammo supply. The people on this site would really appreciate it. If you live in or near NC, I will even clean them for you when you are done getting them filthy. It would be worth it to me to get an idea of what the reliability is for the ZM conversion is compared to your M4 config.
Link Posted: 2/24/2002 6:12:34 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/24/2002 6:40:57 PM EDT by Duffy]
Scott, I understand your concern, though it's not occured to me until you mentioned it. Since the AR wasn't designed to have a true folding stock (even the telescopic one came years later), the left folding stock covers the least number of controls (just the bolt release), if it were on the right side the weapon probably wouldn't function reliably since it'd cover the ejection port AND forward assist. The reason I never thought of the stock covering the bolt release is I have never fired it with the stock folded. Unless a weapon's folding/retractable stock is almost completely out of the way like the MP5 or AK with an under folder, FAL Para (where the stock covers no controls), the folding kind like on the FNC (covers the mag release), Galil (covers the right selector) in my opinion wasn't meant to be fired while folded. I'm not sure if the G36 can be fired with its stock folded
The gas system is not adjustable. Given the AR15's reputation, I don't presently have enough ammo to do a stoppage test (probably need more than a few thousand rounds per rifle)
If you're in CA you're welcome to fire it all you want
To again demonstrate its compactness (hehe I can't help it), a 20" barreled AR15 with A2 stock, an M4gery with Colt's new stock collapsed, and the ZM with stock folded:

Link Posted: 2/24/2002 6:49:35 PM EDT
I had one, it was pretty cool. But... I'm a lefty and it shoots brass pretty much straight back, first time shooting it and my right cheek took some rather nasty blows that left me bleeding.

After the reviews had mentioned how low the recoil on it was, I was surprised to find that it felt just about like my postban Bushy. Being that I only put 20 rounds through it, I can't comment on the longevity of the design, but the last ten shots were fired pretty much as fast as I could fire them, on purpose, just to see if it would jam. Where my AR usually would choke, it fed them just fine. If I were a right handed shooter, I would've kept it longer. Neat experience, but there's a three inch scar on my cheek that reminds me not to repeat it.
Link Posted: 2/24/2002 7:10:15 PM EDT
I'm in agreement with Gr8 Scott. I thought the the buttstock folded right rather than left! Nobody has this weapon, but I see it all the time in magazines. The FAL para folds right, and all the controls are on the left side.

So now I like the upper the upper conversion only. I'll convert my own right folding FAL stock if I can ever get my hands on an upper.


PS: The FAL in 12-16" is awesome and controllable.
Link Posted: 2/24/2002 7:26:26 PM EDT
Unless it improved upon the gas system, I don't think there is much other than looks that the ZM has going for it. Not to mention, if you're in the field and something goes wrong with the upper, is there going to be a part readily accessable to fix it, or are you going to have to wait a couple weeks to get something?

Last point: What use are you going to get out of the gun with the stock totally collapsed? Atleast with the 4 position colt stock, you'll be able to put it to your shoulder and extend it within seconds! If you're ever in the situation that the ZM was designed for, are you willing to fumble for a fraction of a second releasing the bolt?

I looked at their system and walked away for those reasons. Its just too cool looking to be practical in some ways. (No offense Duffy! Looks like you had room to spare in your collection anyway!)
Link Posted: 2/24/2002 7:49:14 PM EDT
I can't say I feel the recoil is less than the M4gery, the muzzle climbs as much as a regular AR, but then I have no scientific proof either way. As to parts, if you have an FNC among those that have ARs, you'd be in the same predicament, at least ZM is in the US and you won't have to be at parts dealers' mercy. As to firing the AR with its stock collapsed, while it's true you'll have access to all the controls, your face might not agree with it when it's at risk of being hit by the rear sight or scope during recoil . ZM's stock needs to be lifted to be folded, but to unfold it, you just swing it back without having to do anything else.
Aren't folding/collapsible stocks designed for space saving? If that's the primary concern for ZM's folding stock, I think it's achieved its objective, without the convenience of being fully operational while folded, again this is not new, FNC and Galil both have the same limitation. Being an add-on to an existing system it's forgivable, in the case of FNC and Galil the designers could have done their stocks better.
I think an AR with the collapsible stock is more than adequate for the job, all the shortcomings you gentlemen listed are valid, since there's no perfect system, we all have to live with some compromises.
Link Posted: 2/24/2002 9:32:49 PM EDT
What is the overall length of the ZM when it is folded? ie, how many inches do you gain over the standard stock? $600 worth?

Thanks
Link Posted: 2/25/2002 7:43:55 AM EDT
I'd just like to interject here a second.

Like Duffy said, if you fire single/multiple shots at a single target you will not feel the lack of muzzle climb as compared to an AR-15 as much.

The difference is when you are firing controlled pairs at multiple targets in depth...coming up from the low to high carry between engagements. Here is where you will feel the difference and it is very noticable. The AR-14/M-4 feels like it wants to jump out of your hands in comparison to the ZM (AR with standard bird cage flashider). I'm talking about target discrimination/reflexive fire (triangles, circles, squares) on the multiple targets in depth...not just shooting a piece of paper on multiple targets. The ZM still has some muzzle climb, but it is much quicker and steadier on target. This can be attributed to the heavier stock (which balances the weapon better) and the gas system (which pulls the carrier into battery vs. pushing on an AR).


...Got to go, I'll finish later...

RLTW

Link Posted: 2/25/2002 2:22:49 PM EDT
Bear definitely knows more about this subject more than I do, I'm just a casual shooter/collector while he is in one of the best light infantry units there is. The ZM measures about 26.5" while folded, it's about the same length of an AR15 with an 11.5" barrel and A2 flash suppressor, stock collapsed.
Link Posted: 2/26/2002 2:10:11 PM EDT
Duffy's just being modest....He has a wealth of information to share...just go back and look at some of his posts. His input has been on the mark...

Ok...to finish what I was saying the other day. The best way to describe how a ZM shoots to those who have not handled one would be to say...it shoots like a balanced compensated AR with the benifit of a flashider. The ZM with the Y-Comp indexed at 1-o'clock (if your right handed), 11-o'clock (if left handed) will have virtually zero muzzle rise even during rapid fire.

RLTW!
Link Posted: 2/26/2002 2:43:41 PM EDT
Bear you're too kind I wish I had joined up when I was younger, now I just have to settle for being a yuppie scum
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