Ak-47

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The AK-47

The AK-47 is not just simply another gun, it is much, much more. It is an ongoing legacy of one mans innovation to the small arms market and a national symbol. In a time of changing warfare, a weapon was needed to work efficiently at and within a range of 300 meters. This weapon needed the accuracy and control of the longer barreled rifles but also the power and automatic fire of a sub machine gun. This lead to a hybrid being created, in the form of the assault rifle (Poyer, Joe 2004).
In the years around 1944 a handful of assault rifles were created, such as the Sturmgewehr 44 or StG44 (German), The M1 Grand (American) and The SKS (Russian). But the most memorable and arguably the best is the AK-47 or Kalashnikov. The AK-47
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8 million of these have been made which is a relatively small number when compared with the AK-47s 100 million (Phillip Killicoat, 2006). From 1955 or the Vietnam War the closest thing to competition was the M16. But was dominated by the AK-47 due to the reliability of the AK and the ease of production verses the clinical M16 with jammed repeatedly, causing stoppages and therefore the ability not to fire.

| AK-47 | M16 | | | | Manufacturer | Izhmash | Colt | Designer | Mikhail Kalashnikov | Eugene Stoner | Year Designed | 1947 | 1957 | Weight (with loaded 30 round magazine) | 5.22 kg | 3.6 kg | Bullet Weight | 8.0 g | 3.6 g | Overall Length | 87.0 cm | 99.0 cm | Barrel Length | 40.6 cm | 50.8 cm | Height (with magazine) | 26.7 cm | 26.7 cm |

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