A Brief Overview of the Egyptian Hakim Rifle : : C&Rsenal
Magazine:10-rnds dtch box
Unhappy with their FN-49 rifles and unwilling to rely on foreign powers, Egypt wanted a new rifle. So they looked to Sweden for designs and tooling to start their own production line.
The Egyptian Revolution of 1952 replaced the kingdom with a republic focused on modernization and reform. Many external powers opposed this change and so Egypt was motivated to begin domestic military production in order to secure its own supplies. Following WWII, Egypt had taken advantage of surplus German armament and equipment and standardized on the 7.92x57mm rifle cartridge. Egypt had been an early adopter of the Belgian FN-49 rifle but it was not, apparently, particularly favored by the military. So the new republic licensed a design and purchased tooling from Husqvarna in Sweden in order to begin local manufacturing.
Egypt’s new rifle was derived from the Swedish Ljungman Ag m/42 semi-automatic rifle using a direct impingement gas system. This WWII-era design uses a tilting bolt, which seats with a locking surface at the rear bottom of the bolt nested into the receiver. A carrier rides over the bolt and when driven forward presses the rear down, into lock; when driven back it lifts the rear of the bolt out of lock. Firing a cartridge passes excess gas down the barrel and a portion of this is bled into a gas tube. This gas is directed back down the barrel and into the face of the carrier, causing it to be driven backwards, again, unlocking the action. The action is fed from a detachable box magazine but could also be loaded with stripper clips. Readying the rifle is actually somewhat unusual. To close the bolt and chamber the first round one must grip the sliding cover and shove it all the way forward, then pull it back. Once this cover is rearward again, the carrier and bolt will snap shut. This has the interesting property of preventing users from “riding the bolt.” The safety switch is at the rear of the action.
Adopted in Egypt as the “Hakim” this new Ljungman was adapted to fire the 7.92mm cartridge, fitted with an adjustable gas valve, and a prominent muzzle brake. Production began at the state’s Factory 54 (later the Maadi Factory) in 1955 and ran until roughly 1959. Despite being reliable, serviceable, and powerful, the Hakim proved heavy and cumbersome in the face of changing doctrine of warfare. Egypt looked to settle in with the AK-47 and the 7.62x39mm cartridge of its neighbors and so the unwieldy 7.92mm had to go. For roughly one year a carbine variant of the Hakim, the Rashid, was produced in this new cartridge. Hakim rifles continued to serve Egypt in second line and training roles until completely displaced by the AK.