AK-47 / Kalashnivok

The AK-47 is officially known as AK or Kalashnivok. It’s a gas-operated assault rifle of 7.62x39mm caliber. It was developed in the Soviet Union by Mikhail Klashnikov.  The AK is the origination firearm that started the Kalashnivok rifle family. Design for the AK began in 1945. It was in 1946 that it was officially presented for military trails, and two years later in 1948, the first fixed-stock version was introduced for active service use in select units of the Soviet Army. The AKS was an earlier design, with S standing for “Skladnoy” which means folding. The AKS was equipped with an underfolding shoulder stock made from metal. 

In 1949, the Soviet Armed Forces officially accepted the AK for use. After several decades, the AK remains a popular choice around the world for multiple nations. It is one of the most widely used assault rifles today and is considered incredibly reliable, even under harsh conditions. It also has low costs in production when compared with contemporary Western firearms. 

Today, the AK is available in almost every geographic region. It’s also intuitively designed and easy to use. Out of the estimated 500 million firearms in use worldwide, about 100 million are projected to be from the Kalashnikov family, and ¾ of those are expected to be AK-47s. This is a testament to the AK’s reliability and popularity among-st millions of people around the world. Its popularity is expected to continue to grow strong since few competitors have managed to gain much traction up against the AK-47.