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Valmet Rk. 62 / 76 / 95 (Finnland)
The data shown for Rk.62 only.
Caliber: 7.62x39 mm or 5.56x45mm NATO (export versions only)
Action: Gas operated, rotating bolt
Overall length: 914 mm
Barrel length: 420 mm
Weigth: 4.3 kg without magazine (3.5 kg Rk.76 with stamped receiver)
Magazine capacity: 30 rds
In the 1950's the Finnish military recognised the need for the new military assault rifle. Instead of "invention of the wheel", finns decided to adopt and modify some of existing designs, and the proven "gun of the big neighbour", the famous Soviet AK-47 was almost a natural choice, since the Finnland had fairy good relations with the USSR since WW2. Finnland bought the license for original AK-47 design (with milled receiver), and first prototypes of the future Finnish assault rifle, named Rk.60, were submitted for military testings in 1960. The Rk.60, being internally almost a copy of the AK-47, showed some external differences. It had tubular metallic buttstock, plastic handguard that did not covered the gas tube, plastic pistol grip. The Rk.60 lacked the triggerguard and has three prong flash hider at the muzzle. The original sights were replaced with hooded post front sight atop of the gas chamber, the tangent rear sight was replaced by an aperture sight, mounted at the rear of the receiver cover. Both front and night sights had folding "night sights", with the white dots.
After the testing and following modifications, that include new, slightly redesigned handguards and restoration of the triggerguard, the rifle was adopted as the Rk.62, and, until now, is in Finnish military service.
During the following years, the state-owned Valmet company, the manufacturer of the Rk.62, designed some further modifications, some of which were adopted for Finnish military service and acquired by Finnish Army, and some being manufactured for export only. The export versions were manufactured in original 7.62x39mm chamberings or in .223 Remington (5.56mm NATO), select-fire or semi-auto only. Some semi-auto variants, named Valmet 78, were manufactured in 7.62x51mm (.308Win).
Of the military wersions, most interesting are Rk.76 and Rk.95TP. The Rk.76 is a modification of the original Rk.62, but with the stamped steel receiver instead of the milled one. This dramatically decreased the weight of the gun. Other changes were four different types of the buttstocks available: the 76W featured wooden fixed buttstock, the 76P fetaured plastic fixed buttstock, 76T featured tubular fixed buttstock (like the Rk.62) and 76TP featured tubular side-folding buttstok. Another change from Rk.62 was handguard, that was more Ak-47-style than of Rk.62.
The Rk.95TP is the latest variation of the Finnish military rifles. It featured old-style milled receiver, but new, side-folding skeleton-type buttstock (Galil type), new muzzle flash hider and new handguards. The triggerguard is enlarged to enable shooting in gloves during the cold Finnish winters. It should be noted that Rk.95TP is referred as Sako Rk.75, not the Valmet Rk.95, because the Sako company (involved in production of the Rk.62 and further modifications almost from the start) was merged with the Valmet company under the name Sako. The Rk.95TP was received by Finnish Army in small quantities (only one batch manufactured). The semi-auto version of the Rk.95 is used for civilian training and practical shooting (under IPSC rules), as well as sold for export. The Rk.95 may be equipped with Finnish-made Reflex sound suppressor.
In general, all Sako / Valmet Rk.62 family weapons are first class quality firearms that designed to withstand extreme environmental conditions of the Nordic Europe. It is also should be noted that early Israeli made Galil assaul rifles were made on macinery and by documentation, bought from Valmet.