Valmet Weapons Systems
The Finnish Solution
Your Subtitle text
Valmet Rifles

Valmet M-60

This was the first of the Finnish "improved Kalashnikovs." Though internally almost identical to the AKM, they were externally very different, with a plastic handguard, tubular steel stock, and a different-shaped receiver designed to take a better rear sight and optional optical sights or night vision equipment. Further development led to the M-62.


Development of the Finnish Valmet rifle started in the late 1950's.  Finland first purchased a number of third model AK's directly from the Soviet Union.  These AK's were the predecessor of the Soviet AKM model assault rifle.  This weapon was designated the Rynnäkkökivääri Malli 54.  These rifles were utilized in testing of the AK series,as well as training of Finnish military troops.

One weakness of the 3rd model AK is the stock attachment.  Stocks were made of wood, and attached by three wood screws.  Further development of the Soviet AKM series corrected the problem of stock attachment.  Valmet weapons used a metal tube stock, solidly attached to the receiver, and did not experience the problems associated with the 3rd model AK's.  One point to watch on Valmet weapons is the evolution of the stock design.  As time went by, strengthening of the tube stock continued.  Below are early Valmet model 60's with the first stock design.

Between 1958 and 1960, further development of the Finnish AK continued.  Several models were tested, and the final model was the Rynnäkkökivääri Malli 60 (Model 60).

The Valmet Model 60 started it all.

In 1960 the first model 60's were in development.  Models were assembled by both Sako and Valmet.  The Sako models did not have the trigger guard, relying on the post for protection.  Valmet models had a more conventional trigger guard installed.  The Valmet was chosen over the Sako. Note the absence of the trigger guard!

Even on first Valmet models the basic style was set. Note the extended mag flap protection, tube stock, rear sight assembly, and the familiar"cheese grater" hand guards! Apparently Model 60's were made only in caliber7.62x 39mm Russian.  Due to the history of conflict with Russia,and Finland's use of captured Russian weapons, the 7.62 x 39mm Russian round was chosen.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Valmet M62

The M-62 is itself an update of an earlier Valmet attempt at an AKM update called the M-60; the M-62 corrects the numerous flaws of the M-60 that were revealed in trials.








Valmet M62 FS 7.62x39



















Valmet M62 Wood
7.62x39








_____________________________________________________________________________________________

Valmet M62 LMG








_____________________________________________________________________________________________


Valmet M71

One odd development in the Valmet series of weapons was the Model 71 series.  If one takes a look at the Model 60, 62, or 76 series . ..  they are very similar in construction.  Not so for the model 71 series.

Valmet Model 71 series weapons were manufactured between 1971 and 1973.  The receiver was a stamped steel receiver with minor differences from the Model 76 series.

This variant of the M-62 was produced only for a couple of years in the early 1970s. It is an M-62 with a stamped steel receiver, a synthetic stock similar to that of the FN-CAL, an AKM-style rear sight, but mounted ahead of the magazine on top of the receiver, and a large prong-type flash suppressor. Most of the Finnish service rifles were in 7.62mm and in 5.56mm NATO. These weapons were eventually replaced by the M-76.

 

 

Calibers: .223 Remington (5.56mm Nato) and 7.62 x 39mm Russian

The majority of .223 caliber rifles were exported and sold commercially.  Apparently the 7.62 x 39mm models were used for a short period of timeprior to the Finnish Defense Forces deciding on the Valmet model 62/76. Valmet model 71 series weapons are still held in stores by Finnish Defense Forces.

Receiver
The Model 71 series uses a stamped steel receiver with reinforcing plates installed on the inside of the receiver in key points.  Minor difference in the rivet locations exist between the Model 71 and 76 series. 

Major Differences. Noticeable differences for the Valmet Model 71 series are:

Front sight is mounted at the end of the barrel.  Not on the gas tubeblock.  The front sight base is integrated into the flash suppressor assembly.  The front sight is also not fully hooded as in the Valmet Model 62 and 76 series.  The front night sight is revealed when thesight blade is rotated 90 degrees.

Rear sight is mounted on top of the gas tube.  The rear sight adjustmentsare marked 100 through 500 meters.  A tritium insert is installed below the opening of the sight blade.  The rear night sight can notbe concealed as on the Valmet Model 62 and 76 series.

The plastic stock series use a stock similar to the Fabrique Nationale CAL series.  Construction of the stock is not very durable.

Stock Type and Attachments. This is one area that is confusing.  Check out our pics for someinteresting information!
Tube Stocks - (Non Folding) - Same type as used on Model 62 Series.
Wood Stocks - Similar to other Valmet wooden stocks.
Various Underfolding AK type stocks ! ! !


Valmet M71 P (plastic stock) .223
The plastic stock models are commonly found.  Durability of thisstock is not very high.  One note is that the plastic stock Model71 series use a different rear trunion than the wood stock models. Attachment of the stock is via a long, large diameter screws that screws into the trunion


 Valmet M71 T (tube folder) 7.62 x 39



Valmet M71 UF (Underfolder) .223





Valmet M71 W (wood) .223

These stocks appear to be the same as one encountered on Model 76 series.  Stocks are made from a nice walnut.  A plastic buttplate is installed.  One note . . . many people complain of the stock being too short.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________


Valmet M72




_____________________________________________________________________________________________


Valmet M76

This weapon is basically an evolutionary update of the M-62. The biggest change is the use of cheaper stamped steel parts instead of milled steel, and lighter and stronger plastics. Another change is the larger variety of M-76s available: the M-76W has a fixed wooden stock, the M-76P has a fixed plastic stock, the M-76T has a folding stock similar to that of the M-62, and the M-76F has a folding plastic butt. In addition, the M-76 comes in 7.62mm and 5.56mm NATO versions.

 
Valmet M-76 Tube Folder .223


Production of Valmet's M76 Assault Rifle began in 1976. The M76 is a version of the Russian AK-47 (Kalashnikov). It differs from the AK-47 with plastic and steel instead of wooden fore-end and pistol grip, and a slightly different muzzle break. Sako made different variants of the rifle before they stopped the production in 1986. These variants include the M76T (tubular butt-stock), the M76F (folding butt-stock), the M76P (plastic butt-stock), and the M76W (wooden butt-stock). The rifle is in use by the armed forces of Finland and Qatar, and the Indonesian security forces. It has also been manufactured in a semi-automatic form for the commercial market.


Calibers

The Valmet model 76 has can be found in 3 different calibers.

.223 Remington (5.56mm Nato)

7.62 x 39mm Russian

7.62 x 51mm Nato

The ultra-rare .222 version of Valmet M76 is for France civilian market

Most common of the calibers in North America is the 5.56mm Nato. When Valmet rifles were exported to the USA, the 7.62 x 39mm models did not sell well.  The main reason for this was ammo availablity. In the 1970's, 7.62 x 39mm ammo was still rather rare.  Ammo was available from Norma, but relatively high priced compared to more common rounds. As a result the 5.56mm models sold at much higher rates than the 7.62 x39mm model.

Currently both 7.62 Nato and 7.62 Russian models are rare in the USA.  5.56 models are much more common and considered an excellent buy. It is the opinion of this web-site that the Valmet Model 76 is one of the best buys of miltary type weapons.  The model 76 is "extremely undervalued" in the current market.


Receiver

The Valmet Model 76 incorporated "improvements" over the Model 62.  Construction of the Valmet Model 76 differed from the 62 in the receiver construction.  Most Model 76's incorporate a sheet metal receiver much like the Kalasnikov.  One primary difference in construction though is the use of reinforcing plates inside of the receiver on each side.  These reinforcing plates add strength and durability to the already rugged rifle.


Stock Types and Attachment

There are several types of stocks commonly found on Model 76 series weapons.  Three types of stocks have been found on model 76 rifles.

- Tube style folding stocks

- Tube style non folding stocks

- Wood stocks

- Plastic stocks - this model appeared to use the Valmet Model 71 plastic stock.  This model is rarely seen.  The Valmet plastic stock was not very durable.

Folding Stock Models

The rear trunion of the tube folding models incorporates an integrated hinge that mates with the hinge assembly on the actual stock.  Thetube folding stock folds to the left on the 5.56mm Nato models, and tothe right on the 7.62 Nato models.  A sheet metal latch is mountedto the rear of the handgaurd assembly at the bottom of the receiver. To open the stock put your thumb through the lower opening of the buttstockassembly.  Push in on the sheet metal latch, abd them pull the stockaway from the latch.  Sometimes this latch can be quite tough. It can be bent slightly to make opening easier.  Closing the stockis accomplished though a push button mounted on the lower right side ofthe rear trunion.  Simply push up and fold the stock.  The foldingstock typically has some play (wobble) in it when locked in the extendedposition.  A hidden compartment within the tube is accessed by slidinga sheet metal cover on the butt stock.  Cleaning equipment can bestored with ease.  Valmet cleaning gear came in a green colored, clothbag.  This helps to prevent the cleaning gear from making noise withinthe tube stock.


Tube Style Non Folding Stocks

A number of model 76's have been seen with a non folding tube stock.  As on the tube style folding stock models,  a hidden compartment within the tube is used to store cleaning equipment for the rifle.

Valmet M-76 Tube Folder .223




Valmet M-76 Tube Folder 7.62 x 39





Valmet M-76 Tube Folder 7.62 x 51 NATO

Wood Stock Models

The rear trunion of the wood stock model does not have the hinge assembly, but instead has an internal threaded portion that the stock bolt threads into.  The stock is inletted to accept the internal threaded tubeassembly.  This gives the wood stock rock solid stability.  If a folding stock is desired on this model,  Ace Stocks manufactures an excellent stock that utilizes this trunion.  The Ace stock is similar to Galil and FN folding stocks.  Lock up is rock solid.  TheAce folding stock folds to the left of the receiver allowing access to the safety while the stock is folded.

Valmet M-76 Wood .223




Valmet M-76 Wood 7.62 x 51



Valmet M-76 Wood 7.62 x 39



Valmet M-76 Wood .222


Plastic Stock Models

The plastic stock is rarely seen on the Valmet Model 76. The durability of this stock was not very good. The stocks frequently crack or break.


Valmet M-76 Plastic .223



Valmet M-76 Plastic 7.62 x 39



Valmet M-76 Plastic 7.62 x 51 NATO




Stamped Sheet Metal

Most Valmet Model 76 weapons were fabricated with a sheet metal receiver.  Construction is similar to the AK series.  One difference we have seen is the installation of steel reinforcing plates within the receiver.  These plates add extra strength to the model 76 receiver.
 

Milled Steel

Several milled steel receiver Model 76 weapons have been seen.  It is easy to tell a milled receiver from a stamped receiver by the absence of rivets on the receiver.  Also a "lightening groove" is commonly found above the magazine well.

Most of these in the USA appear to be made in .308 Winchester (7.62 x 51mmNato).  Mounting of the stock assemblies is different than the sheet metal receiver guns.

On all the milled receiver Model 76 folding stock models we have seen, the stock folds to the right of the receiver.


Unusual Variants

Valmet M-76 Tube Folder Beer Keg (believed to have been made for import to Indonesia)



Valmet M76 Tube Folder Left Hand .223


_____________________________________________________________________________________________


Valmet M-78

The Valmet M78 is a heavy barreled light support variant of the M76 assault rifle. In addition to firing the 7.62x39 cartridge, it was also chambered in 5.56x45 and 7.62x51, variants. The M78 is Vamet's version of the RPK squad auto.

In the movie "Red Dawn", the RPK's that the Wolverines were using were actually Valmet M78's in 7.62x39mm.

The Valmet Model 78 series of weapons were developed to fill the need for a light weight, higher firepower squad support weapon.  This weapon fills this role better than the assault rifle, due to a longer barrel, bipod assembly, and heavier receiver.

One point to note is the design of the stock.  The above stock designs are commonly referred to as "Club Foot".  The non shooting hand is used to grab underneath the stock, pulling it tighter to the shooter's shoulder.  This allows greater control and accuracy.


Valmet M78 7.62x39



Valmet M78 7.62x51



Valmet M78 .223
No photo


Interesting M78 Variants

M-78 Short Version - 16" inch barrel



Valmet M78 Converted to Galil



Tech Data


_____________________________________________________________________________________________


Valmet M78/83S


Valmet M78/83 7.62x51mm. In 1983, a slightly modified version of the M78, the M78/83S, was offered as a sniper rifle. The principle difference between this weapon and the M78 was its Dragunov-style stock. These were a variant of the M78, same rifle, with a thumbhole stock. These were imported before the '89 ban.  Arnold Schwarzeneggar used one of these in the film, "Commando". This is a very rare rifle.





_____________________________________________________________________________________________



Valmet M82

This is a progressive development of the M-71, within a new M-16-type flash suppresser, winter trigger guard, and mostly-plastic construction. This is an M-76 reworked into a bullpup design, with the sights changed and the rear sight moved to a more central position. The body of the weapon is largely made from plastic, though the first versions were made with a wooden body in a very laborious and expensive process.

The M82 was introduced in Finland in 1978 and discontinued production in 1986. Only   2,000 M82's were manufactured, mostly as semi-automatic version in 5.56 mm NATO caliber for ODIN International ltd. in Alexandria, Virginia. 

It has steel frame, which is conventional AK-47/AKM design, constructed inside urethanestock. Trigger of the weapon is polymer to prevent heat of the barrel conducting to it, as the trigger is mounted to the barrel of the gun.

The M-82 was originally meant for Finnish paratroopers and the airborne forces of other countries, but they all found the weapon unsuitable. Few samples were issued. Finnish paratroopers, in particular, did not like the weapon; as the M-82 was designed to be carried uncased on the chest during a drop.  One issue that cropped up during it's short service life was, that the rear sight of an uncased rifle had a tendency to hit the lower face, nose, and cheekbones of the paratrooper during landing. The M-82 was thus never actually used in an operational role by any country. The rifle is also ill-balanced, nearly all the weight is in the rear of the rifle and urethane stock is very prone to chipping and breaking.



The Valmet M82 was developed for Finland Armed Forces for all type of troops. Constructionaly this is independent assault rifle based on AK assault rifles scheme. The main differences are "bulpup" arrangement, dioptrical sight and standard NATO 5.56 x 45 mm cartridge.

M82 has "bullpup" arrangement with magazine placed behind pistol handle. "Bullpup" scheme has a number advantages comparing with traditional rifle designs. Firstly rifle has smaller overall size making it comfortable to use in armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles. Secondly it decreases rifles tossing after each shot in case of barrels and butt-stocks arrangement in one line.



Barrels box and barrels part are placed into shock-proof plastic polymer frame adequate to butt-stock and pistol handle. Rifle has smaller weight than earlier Kalashnikov's assault rifle models. Rifle works on gas returning principle threw the barrels walls. It's mechanism allows to execute single and automatic fire. Reloading handle is placed from the right side as well as safety-lock playing fire regimes changers role.

The M82 feature dioptical iron sights, a mechanical version of a reflex sight, in which the shooter's right eye would be focused on the front sight while the left eye was focused on rear sight, positioned off the rifle's receiver. The two sights would overlap at certain ranges, providing excellent accuracy at a fixed range. However, due to the fixed nature of the offset sights, the weapon's accuracy at variable ranges suffered.



In the movie "The Terminator", the human rebels used these as "pulse rifles" in Reese's dream sequence. Next time you see it, look closely at what they are carrying.

Tech Data


_____________________________________________________________________________________________


Valmet M88 Hunter

The Valmet Hunter was designed for the civilian hunting market during the late 1980's, the emphasis was put on design and form rather than following previous patterns and trends. The weapon was a semi-automatic pattern imported by Stoeger Industries until the mid-1990's when importation stopped. The weapon is a common rifle seen in the hands of sportsmen and hunters as well as rural law enforcement officers who have used this as their personal duty rifle. 

    Ammo               Weight            Magazine
223 Remington    8.0 Pounds    10 & 20 Magazine
243 Winchester   8.0 Pounds    10 & 20 Magazine
308 Winchester   8.0 Pounds    10 & 20 Magazine


M88 .223



M88 .308



M88 30-06



M88 .243


_____________________________________________________________________________________________
 

 

 

 

Website Builder