Original "short-rail" version of the CZ 75.
|Place of origin|| Czechoslovakia
|Designer||Josef and František Koucký|
|Number built||1,000,000+ (October 12, 2007)|
|Variants||see Variants and Derivatives|
|Weight||1.12 kg (2.47 lb)|
|Length||206.3 mm (8.1 in)|
|Barrel length||120 mm (4.7 in)|
|Width||32.6mm (1.3 in)|
|Height||138mm (5.4 in)|
|Action||short recoil, tilting barrel|
|Rate of fire||semi-automatic|
|Effective range||50 m (for 9mm CZ-75 family and CZ-75 Automatic)|
|Feed system||detachable box magazine, 12–26 rd depending on version and caliber|
|Sights||Front blade, rear square notch|
The CZ P-01
|Place of origin||Czech Republic|
|Used by||Czech police|
|Weight||0.77 kg (1.7 lb) with empty magazine|
|Length||184 mm (7.2 in)|
|Barrel length||98.5 mm (3.9 in)|
|Width||35 mm (1.4 in)|
|Height||128 mm (5.3 in)|
|Caliber||9× 19mm Parabellum|
|Action||short recoil, tilting barrel|
|Rate of fire||semi-automatic|
|Feed system||detachable box magazine|
|Sights||Front blade, rear square notch|
The CZ 75 is a semi-automatic pistol made by Česká zbrojovka Uherský Brod (CZUB) in the Czech Republic. First introduced in 1975, it is one of the original "wonder nines" featuring a staggered-column magazine, all-steel construction, and a hammer forged barrel. It has a good reputation amongst pistol shooters for quality and versatility at a reasonable price, and is widely distributed throughout the world. It is also the most common gun in the Czech Republic.
Development of CZ 75 
The armament industry was an important part of the interwar Czechoslovak economy and it was responsible for much of the country's exports (see, for example, Bren light machine gun, which was modified version of Czechoslovak ZB vz. 26). However following the 1948 communist coup d'état, all heavy industry was nationalized and was cut off from its Western export market behind the Iron Curtain. While most other Warsaw Pact countries became dependent on armaments imports from the Soviet Union, much of Czechoslovak weaponry remained domestic (for example, the Czechoslovak army used the Vz. 58 assault rifle, while other communist block countries used variants of the AK-47).
Brothers Josef and František Koucký became the most important engineers of the CZUB following the Second World War. To some extent they participated in designing all the company's post-war weapons. As they used to undersign their designs together (using only the surname), it is hard to assess which of them thought out particular ideas.
By 1969 František Koucký was newly retired, however the company offered him a job on designing a new 9×19mm Parabellum pistol. Unlike during his previous work, this time he had a complete freedom in designing the whole gun from scratch. The design he developed was in many ways new and innovative (see Design details).
Although the model was developed for export purposes (the standard pistol cartridge of the Czechoslovak armed forces was the Soviet 7.62× 25mm Tokarev, which later replaced it with the Warsaw Pact standard 9mm Makarov pistol cartridge), Koucký's domestic patents regarding the design were put into category of "secret patents". This meant, that nobody could learn about their existence, but also nobody could register the same design in Czechoslovakia. At the same time neither Koucký nor the company could file for patent protection abroad. Consequently, large number of other manufacturers began offering pistols based on CZ 75 design (see Clones, copies, and variants by other manufacturers).
The pistol was not sold in Czechoslovakia until 1985. It became popular foremost among sport shooters (sport shooting is the third most widespread sport in the Czech Republic, after football and ice hockey). It was adopted by the Czech armed forces only after the Velvet Revolution in 1989.
Development of sport variants of CZ 75 
In years 1992-1993, rising popularity of the IPSC competitions in the Czech Republic led to inception of CZUB's factory team. Initially, the sport shooters were using CZ 75s and CZ 85s, however already in 1992 Stanislav Křižík designed a new version called CZ 75 Champion. This version had a SA trigger, a muzzle brake and adjustable weights. 150 firearms were initially made in 9×19mm Parabellum, .40 S&W and 9×21mm. The design was further modified (i.e. the adjustable weights were eliminated, a new compensator was developed), however its main shortcomming of the same capacity of magazine as the standard CZ 75 (15/16 in 9mm, 12 in .40 S&W) remained.
In 1998, the versions CZ 75 ST (Standard) and CZ 75 M (Modified) were introduced. These had a different frame than standard versions allowing for more modifications. While the ST had become very successful, M was not initially designed for use with collimator, the use of which led to limited lifespan of the frame.
The popular ST version was further developed mostly with aim of prolonging its lifespan, which led to introduction of CZ 75 TS (Tactical Sports) in 2005. It uses a longer barrel (132 mm) and has also a higher weight (1,285 g) compared to the standard model. High capacity cartridges may use either 20 9mm rounds or 17 .40 rounds. As of 2013, the model is used by the CZUB's factory shooters in the IPSC Standard division, with a custom made version CZ 75 Tactical Sports Open being also available.
In 2009, the sale of CZ 75 TS Czechmate began. The model is a development of the CZ 75 TS Open, available in 9×19mm Parabellum and 9×21mm with magazine capacity of 20 or 26 rounds. As standard, the gun is sold with US made C-More Systems' collimator. CZUB claims that its factory shooter Martin Kameníček had shot 150,000 rounds through the gun in 5 years, in which time he only needed to change the barrel once in order to maintain precision.
Design details 
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The CZ 75 is a short recoil operated, locked breech pistol. It uses the Browning linkless cam locking system similar to that used in the Browning Hi-Power pistol, where the barrel and slide are locked together on firing, using locking lugs milled into the barrel mating with recesses in the roof of the slide. An enclosed cam track integral with the barrel is actuated by the slide release lever's transverse pin. After the first few millimetres of the recoil stroke, the barrel is cammed downwards at the rear, enabling the slide to continue the recoil stroke and eject the spent cartridge.
Most models have the capability of being fired in both single and double action modes, and feature a frame-mounted manual safety. Some recent models have a decocking lever that doubles as a manual safety. Starting in the early 1990s, all CZ 75s have been made with firing pin blocks, designated by the letter B (as in CZ 75B).
The CZ 75 was one of the first high capacity 9mm pistols with a manual safety similar to that of the Browning Hi-Power. This allows the CZ 75 to be carried with the hammer cocked with safety applied and a round chambered, ready for use simply by switching the safety off, a configuration known as condition one. It is somewhat unusual for double-action pistols to have this "cocked and locked" type of safety; most such as the Walther P38 and the Beretta 92F have a combination safety/decocking lever (as do some later versions of the CZ 75). The trade-off of this configuration is that to uncock the hammer for a double action first shot, the hammer must be dropped manually by pulling the trigger while lowering the hammer with the firer's thumb under control. Once lowered in this manner, a double action first shot can be achieved in a similar manner to other double action pistols without actuating any controls. Subsequent shots will be single action unless the hammer is again manually lowered.
All non–double action only CZ-75 variants feature a "half-cock" notch. Unlike a M1911 pistol, this is not a safety position, but rather an operator aid to provide a safe place to manually decock the pistol. All of the "decocker" models decock to this position, and the manual advises not to attempt to place the hammer further on any model.
Unlike most other semi-auto pistols, the slide rides inside the frame rails rather than outside, similar to the SIG P210. This provides a tight slide-to-frame fit and a very efficient barrel lock-up, both of which contribute to good accuracy.
On current models frames are cast and slides are machined from forgings, though forged frames have been used in very early production models. The six-groove barrel has traditional land-and-groove rifling with a higher-than-standard rate of twist (1 in 9.7).
Variants and Derivatives 
CZ variants of the CZ 75 include:
- CZ 75
- The original CZ 75, easily identified by the heavily-stepped slide and short slide rails.
- CZ 75
- Late version, easily identified by longer slide rails and shorter slide-step.
- CZ 75 B
- Second-generation CZ 75 with internal firing pin safety, squared and serrated trigger guard, and ring hammer.
- CZ 75 B Stainless: Stainless steel version of the CZ 75 B
- CZ 75B Omega
- A version of the CZ 75B with a factory-reworked trigger group. It is available chambered for 9 mm or .40 S&W.
- CZ 85
- An updated version of the CZ 75 that's also ambidextrous .
- CZ 85B
- A CZ 85 with a firing pin block.
- CZ 85BD
- A CZ 85 B with a decocking lever, instead of a safety.
- CZ 85 Compact
- A limited production compact CZ 85 with under-barrel accessory rail and chambered in .40 S&W. Identical to the current CZ 75 compact in .40 S&W.
- CZ 85 Combat
- adds an adjustable rear sight, extended magazine release, drop-free magazine and overtravel adjustment on the trigger. Lacks a firing pin safety so that firing pins can be replaced without special fitting.
- CZ 97 B
- .45 ACP version of the CZ 75 B
- CZ 97 BD
- .45 ACP version of the CZ 75 BD
- CZ 75 Compact
- A standard CZ 75 with a slightly shortened grip and 3.9 inch barrel. There is now a version available chambered for the .40 S&W.
- CZ 75 SemiCompact
- Combines the frame, grip and capacity of the full size CZ 75 with the shortened (by 20mm) barrel and slide of the CZ 75 Compact.
- CZ 75 PČR Compact
- Very compact - similar to the P-01 in size, but lacks an M3 rail frame and features a smaller muzzle point and snag free sights. A popular choice for a carry weapon, known for its inherent accuracy and weight distribution.
- CZ 75B SA
- A CZ 75 which has a single action trigger mechanism and a drop-free magazine. It is available chambered for 9 mm or .40 S&W.
- CZ 75 P-01
- A CZ 75 Compact variant intended for law enforcement use, with an aluminum alloy frame, decocker and under-barrel accessory rail. It is the new weapon of choice for the Czech National Police since 2001. It received NATO certification after undergoing extensive testing. Its NATO Stock Number (NSN) is 1005-16-000-8619.
- CZ 75 P-06
- Same as the P-01 but in .40 S&W
- CZ 75 P-07 DUTY
- The CZ P-07 DUTY is a compact, polymer-framed CZ 75 variant notable for having a redesigned trigger mechanism. The redesign has reduced the number of parts as well as improved the trigger pull. Chambered in 9mm Luger and .40 S&W, the CZ P-07 DUTY also includes the ability to change the manual safety to a decocking lever and vice versa through an exchange of parts.
- CZ 75 SP-01/SP-01 Tactical
- Similar to the P-01 with accessory rail, but with all-steel construction and utilizing the full-size frame and slide as well as incorporating extended-capacity 18 round magazines. It is available with an ambidextrous manual safety (SP-01) or with an ambidextrous decocker (SP-01 Tactical). Used in the 2005 IPSC World Shoot XIV by World Champions Adam Tyc and Angus Hobdell (1st and 3rd place respectively in the production division).
- CZ 75 SP-01 Shadow
- New generation of CZ 75 SP-01 pistol especially adapted according to suggestions as proposed by users from Law Enforcement, Military and Police communities worldwide, with an additional input from the Team CZ shooters Angus Hobdell and Adam Tyc. Based on the SP-01, it has no firing pin block resulting in improved trigger travel. It also features a slightly reshaped grip and safety, a “weaker” recoil spring for easier loading, and fiber optic front sight and tactical “Novak style” rear sight.
- CZ 75 SP-01 Phantom
- The CZ 75 Phantom has a polymer frame, is 33% lighter than steel frame models, with accessory rail and a forged steel slide with a weight saving scalloped profile. Two Interchangeable grip rear strap inserts are included with the Phantom to accommodate users with different sized hands. The pistol is further outfitted with a decocking lever. A CZ 75 variant designed specifically for IPSC competition with extended grip, single-action trigger, heavy-duty free-falling magazines, and an enlarged magazine well.::A competition version designed for Open Division IPSC competition, with three port compensator, adjustable trigger, extended magazine release, ambidextrous safeties, fully adjustable sights and two-tone finish, with blued slide and satin nickel frame. Czech Army Paratroopers of the 4th Rapid Deployment Brigade is fully equipped with this pistol from this January (2012).
- CZ 75 Standard IPSC
- A CZ 75 variant designed specifically for IPSC competition with extended grip, single-action trigger, heavy-duty free-falling magazines, and an enlarged magazine well.
- CZ 75 Tactical Sports
- Replacing the ST IPSC was the Tactical Sports model, which featured minor improvements over its very similar predecessor. Available in 9x19mm (20 rounds) or .40 S&W (17 rounds).
- CZ 75 Champion
- A competition version designed for Open Division IPSC competition, with three port compensator, adjustable trigger, extended magazine release, ambidextrous safeties, fully adjustable sights and two-tone finish, with blued slide and satin nickel frame.
- CZ 75 TS Czechmate
- A competition variant based on the Tactical Sports model, equipped with a compensator and electronic red-dot sight on a frame mount. Designed especially for IPSC Open Division (and replacing the older Champion model), the Czechmate presents a turnkey solution for the sport, offering a complete competitive package including additional magazines and spare parts.
- CZ 2075 RAMI
- A subcompact version of the CZ 75 intended for concealed carry. Features a 3-inch barrel, aluminum frame and low-profile sights. Available in 9x19mm or .40 S&W, with standard magazine capacities of 10 (9 mm) and 8 (.40 S&W) rounds, respectively. An optional 14-round magazine is available for the 9 mm version.
- CZ 2075 RAMI BD
- Same as the 2075 RAMI but includes a decocker and tritium sights.
- CZ 75BD
- A variant of the now-common CZ 75B (B standing for firing pin Block) with a decocker replacing the traditional manual safety. (D stands for Decocker). This variant is quickly becoming the most common of the CZ 75B models, due to the additional safety the decocker safety provides.
- CZ 75 Kadet
- A .22 LR calibre version of the CZ 75, available as a complete gun or as a slide/barrel assembly and magazine kit to fit onto a standard CZ 75B frame.
- CZ 75 AUTOMATIC
- A selective-fire variant introduced in 1992 intended for law enforcement and military use. One distinguishing characteristic of earlier models is its longer compensated barrel although later models may have a standard barrel. An extra magazine can be attached to the front to act as a makeshift foregrip.
Clones, copies, and variants by other manufacturers 
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Today the CZ factory is located in the Czech Republic (EU) and the gun is offered worldwide, however during the Cold War, Czechoslovakia was part of the Warsaw Pact and thoroughly communist in its political outlook. The CZ 75 was the first 9mm semi-auto pistol developed expressly for sale to the West and it offered new idea in auto-pistol manual safety design: it was a dual mode design. It could be carried in the conventional double-action/single-action mode of operation, or it could be carried "cocked and locked" like the 1911 pistol.
Due to politics the Czechs could not market their pistol in the United States and because CZ failed to secure world patent protection for their design, a number of firms copied it. Foremost Italian firm Fratelli Tanfoglio made good business marketing the pistol to the West with the design being so solid, that two shooters, US national Doug Koenig and Frenchman Eric Grauffel, have won the hard fought IPSC World Championship using pistols based on CZ 75 design. That was tremendous endorsement for any handgun design because all other World Champions up to the time had used pistols based on the John Browning 1911 format. Other notable copies/clones are those of Swiss origin, which have reputation of manufacturing quality rivaling that of the CZ original.
The clones, copies and variants by other manufacturers include:
- FAMAE FN-750
- Norinco NZ-75
- CZ-Strakonice CZ-TT
- Renato Gamba G90
- Tanfoglio TZ-75, T-90 and T-95
- IMI Jericho 941 and Magnum Research Baby Eagle
- BUL Cherokee
- Baek Du San "백두산권총" (North Korea)
- Armscor MAP1 and MAPP1
- Military Industry Corporation Marra and Lado
- Sphinx Systems Sphinx 2000 and Sphinx 3000
- ITM AT-84 AT-88
- Canik55 Piranha, Shark
- Sarsilmaz M2000
- JSL (Hereford) Ltd Spitfire
- ArmaLite AR-24
- Dornaus & Dixon Bren Ten
- EAA Witness Elite Gold
- Springfield P9
- Vltor Bren Ten
- Many countries use copies and clones produced by local manufacturers (see above). This list only includes users of the original Czech-made CZ 75.
- Czech Republic: Used by the Czech Armed Forces. Also used by Czech police forces.
- Kazakhstan: Used by police forces and SWAT teams.
- Lithuania: Lithuanian Armed Forces.
- Poland: Polish police (limited use).
- Russian Federation: Used by law enforcement.
- Slovakia: Slovak rail police, military police and the elite paramilitary tactical unit (Slovak: Kukláči).
- Thailand: Used by Royal Thai Army special units.
- Turkey: Turkish police forces.
- United States: Used by several police departments and Delta Force.
See also 
- THE CZ 75 PISTOL MODEL PASSED ONE MILLION PIECES (Press release)
- (Czech) "Zašlapané projekty Pistole CZ 75". Česká televize. Retrieved 2011-02-23.
- (Czech) Kyša, Leoš (January 28, 2011). "Počet legálně držených zbraní v Česku stoupá. Už jich je přes 700 tisíc". ihned.cz. Retrieved January 28, 2011.
- Kučera, Pavel (2013), "CZ 75 TS Czechmate Parrot", Zbraně & náboje (5): 10–15
- CZUSA CZ P-01 gets NATO approval (Press release)
- Frank James: Effective handgun defence, Krause Publications 2004
- "The CZ-75 and Its Early Clones". gundigest.com. Retrieved 2011-02-23.
- "Modern handguns - CZ 75 pistol (Czech Republic)". World guns. Retrieved 2011-03-01.
- A Czech emigrant Ing. Tůma was among first to start manufacturing direct copies of CZ 75. Soon he developed own variant of the pistol, which he later offered to Swiss company Sphinx. Sphinx continues to manufacture its own variants of CZ 75 up today. See Zašlapané projekty Pistole CZ 75 (Czech)
- "EAA Witness". shootingillustrated.com. Retrieved 2011-04-25.
- "Georgian Army". Georgian Army. Retrieved 2007-06-25.
- Kazakhstan Special Forces (1/3) on YouTube
- Kazakhstan Special Forces (2/3) on YouTube
- (Slovak) "Týmito zbraňami nás polícia chráni". pluska.sk. Retrieved 2011-03-01.
- Fred J. Pushies: Weapons of Delta Force, Zenith Imprint, 2010, page 53
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