Monday, September 12, 2011

HK417 assault rifle

2006 prototype of HK417 rifle with 20" barrel; note that it used HK G3-compatible magazines

HK417 assault rifle was recently developed by famous German arms-making company Heckler und Koch, as a "big brother" to the 5.56mm HK416 assault rifle. Information on this weapon first surfaced in 2005, on the wave of new interest for the 7.62mm NATO caliber military rifles. This interest came in from experience of international forces gained in Afghanistan and Iraq, where increased range and penetration of the 7.62mm NATO bullets was (and still is) quite useful. Several companies developed new or updated versions of 7.62mm weapons, with intent to sell to military, law enforcement and in certain cases - to civilian shooters as well. The HK417 is one of such weapons. It is primarily oriented toward US market, as it mimics the popular 5.56mm AR-15 / M16 rifles in external appearance, controls, and many design features. However, there are more than few new and original features in HK417, including Heckler-Koch's patented piston-operated gas system, user-changeable barrels etc. Like most other competitors, HK417 riflesare available in several barrel lengths, suitable for full scale of military operations, from close combat in urban or forest areas and upto long-range accurate shooting.

Current (2008) version of HK417 rifle with 12 inch / 30cm barrel, basic version

(2008) version of HK417 rifle with 12 inch / 30cm barrel, fitted with telescope sight with night vision adapter, folding bipod and a sound moderator (silencer)

HK417 rifle is a gas operated, selective fired weapon of modular design. It uses short-stroke gas piston located above the barrel, that operates the 7-lug rotating bolt. Barrels are cold hammer forged, and could be replaced by end user in several minutes using simple tools. There are four basic patterns of barrels available for HK417 as of now: 305mm / 12" and 406 mm / 16" standard barrels and 406 mm / 16" and 508 mm/ 20" accurized barrels. Accurized barrels provide 1 MOA accuracy (with proper ammunition). Receiver is made from high grade aluminum alloy and consists of two parts (upper and lower), connected by two cross-pins a-la AR-15 / M16 rifles. Combination-type safety / fire selector allows for single shots and full automatic mode. HK417 retains all M16-style controls, including last round bolt hold-open device, bolt closure device, rear-based charging handle and magazine release button on the right side of the magazine well. HK417 is fitted with four Picatinny rails on free-float handguard as standard, and will accept any type of sighting devices on STANAG-1913 compliant mounts. It also can accept modified HK AG36/AG-C 40mm grenade launcher, which is clamped directly to bottom rail. Buttstock is of modified M4 design, multi-position telescoped. Production HK417 rifles use proprietary 10- or 20-round box magazines, made of translucent polymer (early prototypes used HK G3 magazines).

(2008) version of HK417 rifle with 16 inch / 40cm barrel

Caliber: 7,62x51mm NATO
Action: Gas operated, rotating bolt
Overall length: 905 - 985 mm with 406 mm barrel / 35.6" - 38.8" with 16" barrel
Barrel length: 305 mm / 12", 406 mm / 16" or 508 mm / 20"
Weight: 4.36 kg - 4.96 kg, depending on barrel length
Rate of fire: 600 rounds per minute
Magazine capacity: 10 or 20 rounds

(2008) version of HK417 rifle with 20 inch / 50cm barrel, with telescopesight and detachable bipod


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