Modern Firearms - Kalashnikov RPK-74
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Kalashnikov RPK-74 light machine gun (USSR/Russia)

Kalashnikov RPK-74 lightmachine gun, original 1974 model with wooden furniture and red plasctic magazine.
 Kalashnikov RPK-74 lightmachine gun, original 1974 model with wooden furniture and red plascticmagazine.

 

 KalashnikovRPK-74 light machine gun, recent production model, with black plasticfurniture and magazine.
 KalashnikovRPK-74 light machine gun, recent production model, with black plasticfurniture and magazine.

 

Kalashnikov RPK-74M lightmachine gun, current production model with foldable butt and side railmount for optical or night sights.
 Kalashnikov RPK-74M lightmachine gun, current production model with foldable butt and side railmount for optical or night sights.

 

Kalashnikov RPK-74M lightmachine gun, butt folded.
 Kalashnikov RPK-74M lightmachine gun, butt folded.

 

Caliber5.45x39 mm
Weight 4,7 kg empty
Length 1060 mm
Length of barrel 590 mm
Feeding box magazine 45 rounds
Rate of fire 600 rounds per minute

 

The Kalashnikov RPK-74 light machine gun has been developed during mid-seventies to complement the AK-74 assault rifle a sa standard squad automatic weapon of the Soviet (later Russian) army.It is based on the parent AK-74assault rifle in the same way as its 7,62mm predecessor RPK was based on AKM assault rifle.Design and functioning of RPK-74 is exactly the same as in RPK, with major differences being the caliber and the magazines - 5,45mm RPK-74 were issued only with box magazines of 45-round capacity, compatible with 30-round AK-74 magazines. Various large capacity magazines (drums and flat pans,holding up to 100 rounds and made of plastic) were experimentally developed for RPK-74, but never achieved production status.

Most recent versions of the RPK-74 are RPK-74M (same gun but with blackpolymer furniture, side-folding butt and side-rail on receiver for sighting equipment; some parts also were strengthened to improve durability of the gun) and the 5,56x45 RPK-201 light machine gun,developed for export purposes to complement 5,56mm AK-101 assault rifle.