Country of origin
Length (with folded stock)
Cyclic rate of fire
Practical rate of fire
40 - 100 rpm
Range of effective fire
~ 400 m
M76 is an improved version of the
Valmet M62 assault rifle. The M76
was adopted by the Finnish Defense Forces in 1976 as the 762 Rk 62
76. The same assault rifle was produced by both Valmet and SAKO, another
Finnish gun maker. Production commenced in 1976 and ceased in 1986.
Eventually in 1986-1987 gun manufacturing unit of the Valmet was
transferred to SAKO and Valmet name was no longer used for the gun
and ammunition production. This weapon is still widely used by the
Finish Defense Forces alongside the older M62, even though a newer
SAKO M95 is available. Though operational M76 assault rifles are
being gradually upgraded. This assault rifle has been exported to
Indonesia and Qatar.
M76 is a gas-operated, selective fire weapon. Like its predecessor
it is based on the Soviet
assault rifle and has the same action. However it uses a modified
gas system, which reduces recoil. Furthermore the Finnish assault
rifle was manufactured using more advanced machinery to far tighter
tolerances and higher specifications. So overall it is a better
weapon than the Soviet AK-47 or
service the Finnish M76 recommended itself as a well-made, robust,
reliable and accurate weapon.
with the previous
M62, the M76 has a stamped steel receiver rather
than milled. Also it has a different polymer foregrip and pistol
grip. The M76 is lighter than its predecessor. Also there are some
other minor improvements.
rifle is chambered for a Soviet 7.62x39 mm ammunition. For decades
Finnish Defense Forces used the same ammunition as the Soviet Union,
so that in case of war Finnish soldiers could use captured
ammunition. Though since the mid 1970s Soviet Army switched to newer
5.45x39 mm intermediate ammunition, which is still standard with the
Russian Army. Finnish Defense Forces decided not to switch to the
new round for logistical reasons and still rely on older, but more
powerful 7.62x39 mm ammunition. Civilian semi-automatic versions of
the M76, chambered for standard NATO 5.56x45 mm and 7.62x51 mm
ammunition, were available.
rifle has an AK-style safety and fire mode selector lever,
located on the right side of the receiver. It has three positions
for "safe", "semi-auto", and "full-auto". When the safety is on it
prevents the shooter from loading the weapon, however it allows to
check whether the weapon is loaded. However this selector lever
is awkward to use.
The M76 is
simple to use and to maintain. For cleaning it can be easily field
stripped without using any tools. There are no small and fiddly
parts that can be lost while the shooter is cleaning his weapon.
rifle is fed from 30-round magazines. It is compatible with both
older steel and newer polymer magazines. Also there are 15- and
20-round capacity magazines, though it looks that these were mainly
intended for civilian semi-automatic only weapons. This assault
rifle is also compatible with standard Soviet 7.62 mm magazines of
assault rifle and
light machine gun. This weapon comes as standard with 6 magazines.
M76 assault rifle has a tubular steel buttstock. The tube of the
stock holds cleaning and maintenance accessories. Some civilian
models have a side-folding tubular buttstock, while others have
solid wooden or polymer buttstocks. A foregrip and pistol grip are
made of polymer materials.
The M76 has
diopter-type iron sights. These are completely different than the
AK-style sights. Front sight of the M76 is mounted on the gas
block, rather than the barrel. It resulted in increased accuracy. The sights are adjusted
in the same manner as the AK-type sights. Maximum sighting
range is 600 meters, though range of effective fire is around 400
meters. It looks like some weapons were fitted with a side-mounted
universal scope rail, that could mount various Soviet sights.
of this weapon has attachment for a knife-bayonet. It can be used to
shoot through barbed wire. Small-gauge barbed wire can be easily snapped by
simply rotating the weapon around it. Though this assault rifle can not
mount a sound suppressor or launch rifle grenades.
is a civilian semi-automatic only version, with a side-folding
tubular stock. It was available chambered for the Soviet
7.62x39 mm or the standard NATO 5.56x45 mm ammunition.
is a light machine gun. In concept it is similar to the Soviet
has a heavy barrel for sustained firing. The baseline version of
this squad automatic weapon was chambered for the 7.62x39 mm ammunition,
though there were export versions, chambered for the standard NATO
5.56x45 mm and 7.62x51 mm ammunition.
83 is a dedicated marksman rifle, based on the M78 light machine
Valmet M82 is an assault rifle with bullpup layout. It was
designed specially for airborne troops and introduced in 1978.
It was proposed as a replacement for the folding-stock models.
However this weapon had some design flaws and was never adopted by
the Finnish Defense Forces. Still though a small batch of these
weapons was produced. These were exported mainly to the United
States. Production was finally stopped in 1986.
SAKO M95 is
a further improved version, produced by SAKO in the mid 1990s. In
1988 the Finnish Defense Forces issued requirement for an improved
assault rifle. Development was completed in 1990. Most important
improvements of the new assault rifle were a side-folding stock,
capability to launch rifle grenades, mount bayonet or sound
suppressor. Also there were some other minor improvements. This
improved weapon has been adopted by the Finnish Defense Forces in
1995 as the 762 RK 95 TP. This assault rifle was produced in
relatively small numbers. Around 20 000 units were built. Production
ceased in 1997-1998.
Rk 62M is an
upgraded version of the Finnish Rk 62 assault rifles. In 2015 the
Finnish Defense Forces announced that they will gradually upgrade
their existing Rk 62 assault rifles. Old tubular buttstock was
replaced by an
telescopic buttstock. Also there are some other improvements. This
weapon retains a side-mounted scope rail, but also has a standard
Picatinny-type scope mount, which is widely used in the West.