AK-47 with 6H3 bayonet
|Place of origin||Soviet Union|
|In service||1949–present (worldwide)|
|Used by||See Users|
|Wars||*Hungarian Revolution of 1956|
|Manufacturer||Kalashnikov Concern and various others including Norinco|
|Number built||≈ 75 million AK-47s, 100 million Kalashnikov-family weapons.|
3.47 kg (7.7 lb)
0.43 kg (0.95 lb) (early issue)
0.33 kg (0.73 lb) (steel)
0.25 kg (0.55 lb) (plastic)
0.17 kg (0.37 lb) (light alloy)
|Length||Fixed wooden stock:
880 mm (35 in)
875 mm (34.4 in) folding stock extended
645 mm (25.4 in) stock folded
|Barrel length||Overall length:
415 mm (16.3 in)
Rifled bore length:
369 mm (14.5 in)
|Action||Gas-operated, rotating bolt|
|Rate of fire||Cyclic rate of fire:
Practical rate of fire:
Semi-auto 40 rds/min
Full-auto 100 rds/min
|Muzzle velocity||715 m/s (2,350 ft/s)|
|Effective range||350 m (380 yd)|
|Feed system||30-round detachable box magazine
There are also 5- 10-, 20- and 40-round box and 75- and 100-round drum magazines available
|Sights||100–800 m adjustable iron sights
378 mm (14.9 in)
The AK-47 is a Russian rifle designed in 1947 by Mikhail Kalashnikov and first used in 1949. It and an updated version called the AKM were used by the Soviet Union's military (which was called the Soviet Army). It was later replaced by the AK-74. The AK-47 quickly became famous and spread all around the world because it was simple to fire, clean and maintain, and also because of its reliability, meaning that it can be fired for a long time without jamming. The AK-47 and its successors continue to be used by many of the world's armies. It is a cheap, reliable, and easy-to-use weapon. The AK-47 was also available with a folding stock, the AKS-47, and a shortened version with the AKS74 folding stock, the AKMSU (used by armoured vehicle crews), although this was soon replaced by the AKS74U, which fires the 5.45 cartridge of the AK-74. There was also a light machine gun variant with a longer barrel and different shaped stock called the RPK.
The AK-47 uses gas-operated reloading. When the bullet is moved down the barrel, a little bit of the gas behind the bullet is made to go up a small tube that pushes away the bolt. This is special because the person who is shooting the gun does not have to reload with their hand every time that they want to shoot - the gun reloads by itself. When you pull the trigger, the bullet in the chamber fires. You then release and then pull the trigger again to fire another round. This is called Semi-Automatic.
The AK-47 is a common gun used by many groups because it is so cheap and available. One of the reasons it is so common is that the Soviets left many of them behind when they left Afghanistan in 1989, after invading it in 1979. The letters AK stand for Avtomat Kalashnikova, which is Russian for Kalashnikov's Automatic Rifle. It shoots the Soviet 7.62x39mm cartridge. It is only accurate up to 300 meters, and beyond that range the bullet starts to tumble and drop. However, this is exactly how Mikhail Kalashnikov planned to make it, since most firefights (fights fought using guns) in WWII happened within 300 m. He wanted a weapon that was useful within that kind of range, since bolt-action rifles, despite having longer effective ranges (range where the gun is accurate), were too slow-firing and too big to be a good weapon in close-quarters combat (fighting that happens in tight spaces).
Users[change | change source]
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Cape Verde
- Central African Republic
- China: Type 56 variant.
- Democratic Republic of the Congo
- Equatorial Guinea
- Greece: EKAM counter-terrorist unit of the Hellenic Police.
- India: Used by Force One.
- Israel: Captured from Arab armies during the Arab–Israeli conflict.
- Malta: Type 56 variant.
- North Korea: Type 58 variant.
- Pakistan: Type 56 variant.
- Palestinian National Authority
- Philippines: Used by the Santiago City PNP.
- Republic of Macedonia
- Republic of the Congo
- Russia: Replaced by the AK-74 in 1974.
- São Tomé and Príncipe
- Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic
- Sierra Leone
- South Africa
- Sri Lanka: Type 56 variant.
- Vietnam: Type 56 and Type 58 variants were used extensively by the North Vietnamese Army and Viet Cong during the Vietnam War.
Notes[change | change source]
- Table data covers the AK-47 with Type 3 receiver
References[change | change source]
- http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2011/02/10/most-influential-weapon-our-time/ The Most Influential Weapon of Our Time. The New York Review of Books. Max Hastings FEBRUARY 10, 2011 ISSUE. "József Tibor Fejes, a young Hungarian identified by C. J. Chivers in The Gun as ‘the first known insurgent to carry an AK-47.’ According to Chivers, ‘Fejes obtained his prize after Soviet soldiers dropped their rifles during their attack on revolutionaries in Budapest in 1956…. The Hungarian Revolution marked the AK-47’s true battlefield debut."
- Monetchikov 2005, chpts. 6 and 7: (if AK-46 and AK-47 are to be seen as separate designs).
- Killicoat, Phillip (April 2007). "Weaponomics: The Global Market for Assault Rifles" (PDF). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 4202 (Post-Conflict Transitions Working Paper No. 10). Oxford University. p. 3. Retrieved 3 April 2010.
- "AK-47 Inventor Doesn't Lose Sleep Over Havoc Wrought With His Invention". USA: Fox News Channel. 6 July 2007. OCLC 36334372. Retrieved 3 April 2010.
- НСД. 7,62-мм автомат АК 1967, pp. 161–162.
- НСД. 7,62-мм автомат АКМ (АКМС) 1983, pp. 149–150.
- "AKM (AK-47) Kalashnikov modernized assault rifle, caliber 7.62mm". Izhmash. Archived from the original on 6 October 2014.
- Kahaner, Larry (26 November 2006). "Weapon Of Mass Destruction". The Washington Post. Retrieved 3 April 2010.
- Janes (2009-12). Jane's Infantry Weapons 2009–2010. Jane's Information Group. ISBN 978-0-7106-2869-5. Unknown parameter
|author=suggested) (help); Check date values in:
- D. M. O. Miller (31 August 2001). Illustrated directory of twentieth century guns. ISBN 978-1-84065-245-1.
- Milosevic, Milan (2005). "Trojanski Konj za Teroriste" (in Serbian). Kalibar. Archived from the original on 14 August 2010. Retrieved 4 April 2009.
- "Greece Ministry of Public Order Press Office: Special Anti-Terrorist Unit". Hellenic Police. July 2004. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 July 2010. Retrieved 27 September 2009.
- "Maha's elite counter terror unit Force One becomes operational". Business Standard. Retrieved 5 July 2010.
- Pakistan Military Consortium. Pakistan Ministry of Defense (1989-05-29). Retrieved on 2011-03-14. Archived 19 May 2011 at WebCite
- Israel Aids Palestinians With Arms, New York Times. 5 September 2008.
- "Santiago city forms SWAT team to combat crime". Philippine Information Agency. 2 September 2006. Retrieved 1 February 2010.
<ref>tag; no text was provided for refs named
- Macedonian military police, US National Guard conduct joint manoeuvres. SETimes.com. Retrieved on 14 March 2011.
- Western Sahara – In the unforgiving deserts of south west Algeria, Nick Ryan meets the nomads fighting a 25 year battle.
<ref>tag; no text was provided for refs named
Other websites[change | change source]
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to AK-47.|