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Heckler & Koch G36

Assault rifle

HK G36

The Heckler & Koch G36 rifle is described as a good, accurate and reliable weapon

Country of origin Germany
Caliber 5.56 x 45 mm
Weight (empty) 3.6 kg
Length 1 000 mm
Length (with folded stock) 758 mm
Barrel length 480 mm
Muzzle velocity 925 m/s
Cyclic rate of fire 750 rpm
Practical rate of fire 40 - 100 rpm
Magazine capacity 30 rounds
Sighting range 1 000 m
Range of effective fire 800 m


   The G36 had been designed in the early 1990s by Heckler & Koch company (HK). It was intended to replace the ageing G3 battle rifle in service with the Bundeswehr. The new rifle has also been aimed at the export customers. It is worth mentioning that during trials a prototype of the HK G36 was rated higher than the Austrian Steyr AUG. The G36 entered service with the German Army as a standard infantry rifle in 1995. This weapon became an export success. It has been exported to more than 40 countries around the world. It is also in service with various law enforcement agencies worldwide.

   Even though the G36 is one of the best assault rifles in the world. It is in service with Germany for more than 20 years, hence it is considered out-dated in Germany. the German Army plans to replace it in 2019 or so. The German Army is looking for a new weapon. Several designs, including Heckler & Koch HK433 and Rheinmetall-Steyr RS-556 will compete to meet this requirement.

   The Heckler & Koch G36 is chambered for the 5.56x45 mm standard NATO round. It is a conventional gas operated, selective fire rifle. It uses some proven elements of the previous G3 rifle design. Internally it also bears a lot of similarity with the US Armalite AR-18 automatic rifle.

   The fire mode selector also serves as a safety switch. Rifle's trigger unit is assembled in a separate integral plastic housing, which also includes a pistol grip and the triggerguard. This interchangeable trigger unit has a wide variety of firing mode combinations. A standard version has single fire, two round burst and full-auto modes, however other combinations are possible.

   Most of external parts of the G36 are made form polymers. Rifle's manufacturing process also employs the most modern technologies. The G36 is described as a good, accurate and reliable weapon. It is also simple in operation and maintenance. This rifle can be field stripped without any tools. However there were complaints about overheating of the polymer handguard during the sustained fire.

   This weapon is ambidextrous. A charging handle can be rotated to the left or to the right. The ejection window has a spent cases deflector, which propels ejected cases from the left-handed shooter. The fire mode selector is also ambidextrous.

   This rifle is fed form 30-round box-shaped magazines, made form translucent plastic. Two or three magazines can be clipped together for rapid reloading. This weapon is also compatible with a 100-round dual drum magazines.

   The G36 comes with a side-folding skeletonized buttstock, which folds to the right side. When folded this buttstock does not interfere with weapon's operation. After some adjustments this rifle becomes compatible with any standard NATO magazines, intended for the 5.56-mm ammunition.

   A standard German Army rifle has a dual sight system. It consists of one 3.5x magnification scope, suitable for long-range accurate shooting and one 1x magnification red dot sight above it, suitable for short ranges. Both sights are built into the carrying handle. Some German soldiers complained that sights are being easily fogged in bad weather conditions.

   This rifle is compatible with the HK AG36 40 mm underbarrel grenade launcher. It can be used to launch barrel-mounted riffle grenades. This weapon can be also fitted with an AK-74 type bayonet.




   HK G36K a shorter carbine version. It comes with iron sights and Picatinny-type accessory rail instead of the carrying handle.

   HK G36E export version, sometimes called as the G36V. It is fitted with a singe 1.5x magnification sight. Iron sights are molded on top of the carrying handle and are used only in case of emergency. This variant is in service with Spain.

   HK G36KE, a shorter export version.

   HK G36C a compact assault rifle, intended for the special operation forces and airborne troops. It has been developed from the G36K.

   HK MG36 squad automatic weapon. It is a heavy-barreled version, fed from 100-round dual drum magazines and fitted with folding bipod. However this version has not been produced in quantity and is no longer offered.

   HK G36A2 an upgraded variant used by the Bundeswehr. It is fitted with detachable red dot sight, new foregrip with three Picatinny-type rails.



HK G36

HK G36

HK G36

HK G36

HK G36

HK G36


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