Romanian "eurokalash": AK under the standards of NATO
Romanians did not reinvent the wheel, but simply adapted PM md 86 (Romanian equivalent of AK-47) to standard NATO ammunition.
As the plant director, Nikolae Mihaylescu, stated, the prototype was developed very quickly, in just over 30 days.
“The prototype was made on the basis of a factory-manufactured weapon of caliber 5,45 x 39, now in service with the Romanian army. It can be said that the release of a weapon upgraded in accordance with the technical requirements of the Alliance, the need for which arose after Romania joined NATO, would require minimal investments. In fact, we are talking only about the adaptation of an existing line to a new caliber, ”said the director of the company.
It must be admitted that Mihaylescu is somewhat cunning when he speaks about record-breaking short periods for creating a prototype. The fact is that in reality, it was based not on the PM md 86, but on the self-loading version of the machine chambered for the 223 Rem.
This carbine, adapted for the civilian market, both national and foreign, has been produced by the plant for several years now, it is well developed and is in considerable demand in the USA. In addition to eliminating the automatic fire function in it in accordance with the “fencing”, it was also “customized”: he received a four-position telescopic butt, a more ergonomic pistol grip, and an overlay for the venting tube and forearm received Picatinny trims, allowing to install a collimator or “scout” sight, LCC, tactical flashlight, bipod or tactical handle. In addition, the carbine retained the dovetail side bracket for attaching optics, typical of Soviet weapons.
That is, the task of the KB KMZ in creating the prototype of the NATO standard automaton was to return the automatic fire function to the self-loading carbine. In this regard, it is not entirely clear why they dragged on for a whole month.
It can be assumed that there is some kind of game around the adoption of this machine, which received the name TNC-1, due to the fact that there are people in the country's ministry of defense and in the authorities who impede the realization of this very simple, logical, and , most importantly, economical solution to the problem of rearmament. The fact is that the leading countries of NATO, primarily the United States, are seeking to use the rearmament programs of the new members of the alliance to impose their weapons on them. Actively engaging military leaders and politicians of these countries in his lobbying.
That is, certain "pitfalls" on the TNC-1 path to the troops are present. A couple of months ago, Nicolae Mihaylesku said that the weapon had successfully passed military tests in a military unit in Tirgu Mures, was subjected to all the necessary tests and tests, but the final decision on it has not yet been made.
The director of the Kujir Mechanical Plant noted that everything was ready for the start of the mass production of weapons, and the enterprise was only waiting for "commands from the Romanian army." Mihaylesku stressed that first of all KMZ will work on domestic, national orders, although a certain interest has already been expressed in new weapons abroad.
He is convinced that weapons will be in demand in the global market. First of all, in the third world countries, in Asia, in Africa and in the Middle East.
There are grounds for such hopes among the Romanian gunsmiths: their relatively inexpensive weapons with acceptable quality are in steady demand in the world. Few armed conflicts today do without Romanian machine guns. However, it should be noted that the bulk of this weapon was released under Ceausescu and was sold from warehouses almost at the price of scrap metal.
Capacities and personnel of KMZ have steadily declined. So, if before the revolution more than 18 000 people worked on it, then today 910 employees work here. At the same time, the company remains afloat largely due to the release of civilian weapons.
Mihayesku is very much looking forward to receiving the order for the TNC-1 and even promises to recruit new employees for it and create a new, independent of the existing production line.
However, it should be noted that on the world market, Romanian gunsmiths will have to compete fiercely with their Bulgarian colleagues, who offer similar products, and also at low prices. And they do not need to increase production - they have already occupied their niche. The one that the Romanians were aiming at.
And the plant itself is likely to be able to satisfy the needs of the Romanian army itself with the available capacities.
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