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CZ Shotguns Review: Wooden Stock Champions

Last Updated: March 13, 2024

CZ is a brand known mostly for its handguns and rifles. Whereas pistols have a very modern, now standard for automatic handguns look to them, rifles often carry the air of tradition on their wooden stocks. CZ shotguns might not boast the popularity of their more famous relatives but are nonetheless sophisticated firearms whose performance lives up to their gorgeous looks. In this review, we’ll take a look at CZ shotguns: three over/under shotguns and one semi-auto. I’ll share my personal impressions and experiences with the shotguns, and we’ll also see what people on the internet have to say.

Shotguns Reviewed

CZ Redhead Premier

CZ over/under shotguns aren’t known for being extremely cheap – the lower margin for any quality over/under guns starts somewhere at $800, and you can get plenty of other guns for that money. However, those who choose over/under shotguns know what they are getting – a time-tested design incarnated in a modern body with the features that appeared since its introduction. And the CZ Redhead Premier is a great example of a shotgun that utilizes the classic design and delivers incredible performance, be it upland hunting or clay shooting.

cz redhead premier review

Stock and Receiver

The CZ Redhead Premier comes equipped with a Turkish Walnut stock, and the woodwork on this one is absolutely stunning. It is nicely grained, and the checkering also feels really pleasant. There are no sling swivels, unfortunately, but carrying this shotgun doesn’t feel like a burden anyway. It weighs almost 7 pounds (6.9 according to the specifications), which is good for a 20-gauge shotgun in my opinion. CNC-machined from a single block of steel, the receiver features a silver satin chrome finish. All things combined make this CZ over/under shotgun a real beauty, elegant yet strict.

Action & Safety

The shotgun is an over/under design, meaning it has two barrels stacked on top of each other. They say the simpler the action, the more reliable it is, and over/under shotguns confirm this rule. The lever that breaks the shotgun open rests above the manual safety that also happens to incorporate the barrel selector. The latter enables you to choose which of the barrels will shoot first, so you will have the opportunity to choose the shooting style you find more comfortable. I can’t quite explain why, but going with the bottom one as the first felt more comfortable.

cz redhead premier 20 gauge


The shotgun comes with bead sights mounted on the rib for quick reference. I can’t say I would mount sights on a shotgun on purpose, but since they come preinstalled, you might as well take advantage of them.

Choke Tubes

The CZ Redhead Premier includes five choke tubes (Full, Improved Modified, Modified, Improved Cylinder and Cylinder). That’s a lot, few manufacturers include more than 3, if any at all. offering versatility for different shooting ranges and conditions. These chokes can be easily swapped out depending on your shooting needs, so that’s a huge plus.

cz redhead premier for sale


Despite being a mass-produced gun, the CZ Redhead Premier feels custom-made. Weighing just under 8 pounds and measuring 46 inches in length, the gun handles exceptionally well. It is far from the old, unwieldy shotguns that many might associate with over/under weapons. Instead, the CZ Redhead Premier handles as well as it shoots.


The CZ Redhead Premier doesn’t disappoint when it comes to accuracy (which cannot be said about me), given you are not asking it to do anything it wasn’t meant to. Since our GRITR Range doesn’t allow for shotgun usage, we had to visit the nearest range that does. I’ll be honest with you guys, I’m not particularly good at skeet shooting, so I can only convey my experience and impressions handling the gun.

I can definitely say that in more skillful hands this shotgun will unleash its true potential. However, even I managed to score more than half of my singles and miraculously got a double.

Reliability is a key factor when choosing any firearm, shotguns are no exception. The CZ Redhead Premier is as reliable as a Swiss watch. I haven’t shot thousands of shells through it, since I had three other CZ shotguns to test and still want to afford my rent, but the hundred that I shot came out with no issues. I don’t know which part is responsible for that level of reliability, so I’ll call it a collective effort. But the independent auto-ejectors definitely deserve a mention. They are easy to clean and maintain, adding to the gun’s overall reliability.

cz redhead premier

CZ Redhead Premier 20Ga 28in 2rd 3in Over/Under Shotgun (06473)



The Redhead Premier Target looks gorgeous, shoots reliably, feels good in the hand, is relatively lightweight for a shotgun and comes from CZ, known for their outstanding customer support. I’ve browsed the web for other reviews, some people had issues with the firing pin after a while, but CZ sends replacement parts and can fix your gun free of charge as long as the warranty is in force, which is five years. No firearm can avoid failures sooner or later, so it’s good to know you’ve got covered for as long as that. 

Opinions from Reddit

“The CZ Redhead is a pretty decent gun for the money. I know of one that has 30,000+ documented rounds down range with no problems.”

“The redhead premier is more of a field gun, and the premier target is more of a clays gun. Mechanically they’re the same, both copies of Browning superposed from what I recall so the action is tried and true/dated.”

“There was nothing wrong with that CZ, in fact it’s a great gun for the money. It had prettier wood, better palm swell, came with a full set of factory extended chokes and never let me down.”

CZ-USA 712

There will be plenty of other over/under shotguns to look at, so let’s take a break for a moment to look at something different. A semi-auto shotgun, for example. The CZ-USA 712 G3 is the latest iteration in a lineage of versatile CZ shotguns. Following its predecessors, the original CZ-USA 712 launched in 2005 and the G2 in 2009, the G3 hit the market in late 2022. It claims to deliver both in field and on range and I found this claim to be well-grounded.

cz 712

Stock & Receiver

The stock and forend sport the same Turkish Walnut, which definitely feels great. It might not be as high-quality as in the Redhead Premier model, but this shotgun is also twice as cheap, so it would be unfair to expect the same level of craftsmanship. The original came out in 2005, G2 – 2009, and G3 – late 2022. 

Action & Performance

Being a semi-auto shotgun, the CZ 712 operates on a gas system and comes with two pistons: one for light loads and one for heavy ones. If you are into shooting different loads during your hunting trips or shooting sessions, I strongly recommend you use a corresponding piston. I purposefully tried to shoot a heavy load with a light-load piston and the issues started after the first round. The same goes for the heavy piston with lighter loads. I will say that extra replacing work kinda takes away from the fun, but I assume most people stick to one type of ammo, so you won’t need to do that regularly. 

cz 712 g3

Weight & Balance

The product detail page specifies the weight at 7.3 lbs, but I found this shotgun to be a bit heavier than that. Not uncomfortably so, but the CZ 712 also happens to be slightly front-heavy. This might make it a bit more challenging to carry around all day long. However, the extra weight at the front end might aid in stabilizing the gun during shooting, so I wouldn’t call it a full-fledged drawback.


The trigger on the G3 has a really nice break, but the take-up could’ve been shorter. It’s a 5.3-ish-pound trigger that works fine but has some room for improvement.

Choke Tubes

The CZ-USA 712 G3 comes equipped with five extended chokes, the same as the CZ Redhead Premier, which is simply terrific and better than the majority of brands are willing to give.

Safety & Controls

The shotgun features a crossbolt safety, located on the front part of the trigger guard. It’s triangular and relatively easy to engage. The gun sports bigger controls if compared to its previous iterations, which is always great since it makes them easier to engage. The bolt release has been improved with grooves, which makes it even more convenient to use.

ся 712

CZ-USA 712 G3 12Ga 3in 3rd 26in Matte Black Chrome Walnut Semi-Auto Shotgun (6165)


Recoil Pad & Muzzle Jump

Compared to previous generations, the CZ 712 G3’s recoil pad is thicker and offers a larger contact area. I haven’t personally tested G1 and G2, but I can say with confidence this one should be more comfortable to shoot in that regard. I got a bit of a muzzle jump initially, but the gun quickly settled to feel more natural and the jump was gone in no time.


In terms of value for money, the CZ-USA 712 G3 is hard to beat. It’s not without its drawbacks, and I’ve mentioned a few moments that could use some attention. But for that price, really, I don’t think you can find anything even distantly comparable. Despite its affordable price, it doesn’t compromise on features or performance. It might actually be a great choice for people who dabble in shotgun shooting every once in a while, as you don’t want to spend much money on something you won’t use often.

cz 712 review

Opinions from Reddit

As an aerospace machinist, I was impressed with their quality. Used it all of duck season and I mean dropped in the swamp completely, caked in mud within the receiver. That thing kept going. From what I’ve researched Turkey makes great barrels. I guess people don’t know what they’re talking about.

Zs are made by Huglu, a Turkish company, so a heads up if you have problems buying Turkish. Quality and reviews are very good – especially for the price.

CZ Drake

Both of the previous CZ shotguns claimed to be equally good for shooting at the range and in the field. This shotgun, while obviously capable of both of these tasks as well, is definitely meant to be used in the field. The CZ Drake also falls within the affordable category, which makes it a perfect hunting shotgun. Since hunters spend much fewer shells than competitive shooters, you won’t need to worry about longevity, which might be inferior to that of high-end shotguns.

cz drake

Stock & Receiver

Here, we have another Turkish Walnut beauty on our hands. The receiver is CNC-machined from a single billet, so you can expect it to be extra durable. The receiver is also coated with an OD Green Cerakote Finish, an added feature that provides excellent protection against moisture. The stock has nice checkering, quite enough to get a good grip. However, the thin black rubber buttpad is rather rudimentary and could have been better.

Smooth Action and Selectable Trigger

The action of the CZ Drake All-Terrain is smooth and reliable. It sports the same feature I’ve grown to love while testing CZ shotguns – a simple manual extractor instead of ejectors to empty shells. Having the opportunity to remove spent shells from the chamber manually instead of having to pick them up from the ground later on is easy to get used to. At least it works well with CZ over/ under shotguns, since there are only two shells you can replace at a time. The single selectable trigger is another notable and now familiar feature. It provides the shooter with the ability to choose which barrel shoots first, but only while the safety is on. When the safety is released, you’ll have to shoot in whichever configuration is set.

cz drake 12 gauge

Practical Features for Field Use

This gun has an obvious upgrade that also reflects the shotgun’s focus on fieldwork. The lower parts of the stock and the barrel feature sling swivels. Carrying this shotgun around will definitely be much easier than the models I’ve covered so far. The CZ Drake All-Terrain comes with microfiber optics on the front which is a nice touch that might help aim faster. Moreover, it’s also easy to disassemble, making maintenance and cleaning a breeze. And, like all other CZ shotguns, it comes with five chokes. As generous as ever, those CZ. 

Weight and Recoil

In terms of weight and recoil, the CZ Drake All-Terrain is manageable. It weighs around 7 lbs, which is fine – the shotgun definitely has this nice feel of weightiness to it. The recoil is also relatively mild, at least for a 12 gauge. 

cz drake all terrain

CZ Drake All-Terrain 12 Gauge 28in 2rd 3in Turkish Walnut/OD Green Cerakote Shotgun (06410)



If you are new to bird hunting and don’t know whether you will like it or not or simply know you’ll go out hunting once or twice a month, it’s the perfect choice. It’s packed with features that help it perform extremely well in the field. It doesn’t break the bank and it is covered by a warranty for five years.

Opinions from Reddit

“I had the Drake in 12 ga for a while it’s was pretty good never really had any problems with it. Cz has a pretty good reputation for all their guns. I would definitely recommend one, it’s a pretty affordable intro into over unders.”

“Overall, I am extremely happy and it will make for a perfect blind gun I don’t have to worry about dinging and when I don’t want to shoot semi.”

CZ Supreme Field

Having thoroughly explored the selection of CZ shotguns below the one-grand-margin, let’s stand on our tiptoes and take a look at how the upper echelon is doing. A single glance is all it takes to get enthralled by the magnificence of the CZ Supreme Field. Regular readers will know that I’m a sucker for wooden stock and any wooden elements in the guns whatsoever (that’s one of the reasons why CZ shotguns were chosen for this review) Whereas all the firearms I’ve covered here boast beautiful wooden stocks, the Supreme Field takes the cake. The sophistication incarnate, it definitely deserves the title of the crown jewel of the CZ over/under shotguns collection.

cz supreme field


The CZ Supreme Field wooden stock is a real clincher. And it’s not the same old Turkish Walnut we got to see so often in this review. It is a Grade III Turkish Walnut, which even the most fussy gun collectors would be pleased to have in their collections. The shotgun also features a sharply checkered full forend, that also exudes class and style.

Highly Detailed Receiver 

The receiver of the CZ Supreme Field is a cut above the rest. It is CNC-machined from a single billet, but we’ve already seen that. What we haven’t seen yet is the engraving boasting such attention to detail. The deep relief engravings cut by hand further add to the elegance of the gun.


The action of the CZ Supreme Field is very smooth and reliable, not a single failure tarnished its reputation. I’ve asked around if anyone has been shooting this shotgun longer than I did and a college of mine had it for like 5 years. He’s a hunter more than he is a skeet shooter so he hasn’t shot as many shells as sports shooters would. Nonetheless, he said he couldn’t recall a single time when the gun failed him. I mean, have you seen it? It looks as reliable as a Swiss watch.

Unlike previous models, the CZ Supreme Field is equipped with an ejector, so you can expect the empty shells to take off the moment you break the gun open. 

cz supreme field for sale

Weight and Recoil 

Weighing in at just under 8 lbs, the CZ Supreme Field is a manageable firearm, definitely lighter than some of the conventional shotguns out there. 

Additional Features 

The CZ Supreme Field ships with five chokes, and I’d say one can easily get used to that kind of service, it will definitely affect my expectations regarding other shotguns. 

cz supreeme field

CZ Supreme Field 20Ga 28in Barrel 3in Chamber Grade III Turkish Walnut Stk Gloss Black Shotgun (06465)



The CZ Supreme Field is a custom-quality shotgun that doesn’t cost a fortune like it should. The magnificent stock alone is enough to fall in love with the gun, and its performance didn’t dispel the charm.

The starting price for regular over/under shotgun is around $800, but CZ shotguns come at a much more affordable price, starting from $500.

The CZ Redhead Premier shotgun weighs approximately 6.9 pounds according to specifications.

The CZ Redhead Premier shotgun comes with five choke tubes: Full, Improved Modified, Modified, Improved Cylinder, and Cylinder.

CZ shotguns come with a warranty that covers them for five years.

The CZ-USA 712 G3 shotgun comes with two pistons, one for light loads and one for heavy loads.

The CZ Drake shotgun features a crossbolt safety located on the front part of the trigger guard.

The CZ Supreme Field shotgun features a Grade III Turkish Walnut stock.

Timothy Chandler

Timothy Chandler is a long-time outdoor enthusiast and shooting range regular who decided to put his passion into words. Having tried an immeasurable number of firearms during his hunting trips across Texas and several other states, Timothy has accumulated a knowledge base worthy of sharing. The possible blanks in the expertise he compensates with the help of his numerous shooting buddies. Timothy is set on a seemingly impossible mission to try it all in the realm of firearms. Follow him on his never-ending journey through the gun world.

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