Strange Guns: Bullpup Ak5 (FNC)

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The Ak5 is the Swedish military’s variant of the FNC carbine. The “C” variant is the short-barreled carbine model, now widely used by the Swedish Army. Shorter still, though, is this bullpup conversion of the Ak5, shown below:

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The image first appeared online in 2013 on the Swedish message board Klocksnack (though the original image has long since expired). The text describes the weapon as an early developmental model of an attempt to shorten the Ak5, from the 2000s. Beyond that, virtually no other information is available, except what can be gleaned from the image itself, which has been making the rounds on Reddit and Imgur recently.

The gun is clearly a converted Ak5, the upper and lower being modified from standard production items. The trigger group has been covered by two welded sheet metal panels, a buttstock adapter fitted to the rear of the receiver, an extension for the new pistol grip and trigger fitted, and a raised sight mount welded to the upper receiver. To facilitate firing, a curved rod was run from the front pistol grip to the original trigger group in the receiver.

Sweden is not the only nation to create a developmental weapon of this kind. In the 1960s, the UK modified Sterling-made AR-18 rifles to the bullpup configuration in a very similar manner. This project eventually led to the troubled L85 rifle.

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RSAF Enfield’s modified bullpup AR-18. Image source: The Last Enfield, Collector Grade Publications.



Nathaniel F

Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. In addition to contributing to The Firearm Blog, he runs 196,800 Revolutions Per Minute, a blog devoted to modern small arms design and theory. He can be reached via email at nathaniel.f@staff.thefirearmblog.com.


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  • Sam Deeley-Crane

    us brits also tried bullpup l1a1 slr’s (f.a.l’s)

    • Colin

      And Enfield converted the Stoner 63 too.

  • mechamaster

    Found the same concept in Indonesian-made Pindad SS3 ( bullpup ver. of Pindad SS2 )
    ( as the variant of the FNC family ). But from the ergonomic factor, it’s a bit ‘awkward’.

    • Paul Epstein

      The bullpup version looks a LOT like the SAR-21 bullpup- they definitely seemed to be looking at that for inspiration regarding the carry handle and handguard.

      • mechamaster

        Well, IMO in the prototype bullpup variant, it’s more like L85A1 / SA80 plus M16 style carrying handle, pistol grip, and iron sight.

        It’s still need more work and improvement in the magazine release button design, firing selector / safety switch accessibility, and ease the problem for left hand shooter compatibility because of the AK-style reciprocating charging handle.

        • Guest01

          they don’t need to, since being left handed is view to “rude” in their culture/society. so most of the servicemen using this rifle will 99% of the time be right handed. and the rifle won’t be available for the civilian markets.

          • TB

            What are you talking about? As a Swede, I have never heard about that being left handed should in any way be “rude”.

            Also, even right handed shooters needs to deal with right side corners, and therefore need to be trained to use their rifle from the left shoulder also, which is difficult with a Bullpup. That’s one of the reasons this prototype was never accepted as a service rifle, I’m sure.

          • Guest01

            wasn’t talking about Sweden, was talking about Pindad SS3 which is used in Indonesia.

          • Guest01

            Corretion:
            *which is from Indonesia (wasn’t ever “used” in service)

          • TB

            Ok, sorry, I thought you were talking about the Ak5 Bullpup… *oops*

          • mechamaster

            Well, the SS3 is just a testbed prototype for future evaluation purpose if I’m not mistaken, but the conventional layout SS2 is in widespread use in Indonesian military.

          • mechamaster

            Shooting from left hand is not considered rude. lol.
            ( but in Indonesian formal and traditional customs situation it’s considered rude to use left hand )

  • Anonymoose

    Is that a flamethrower in the back?

    • SP mclaughlin

      Perhaps th champions of human rights have some questionable secrets.

      • mosinman

        it’s only for clearing snow away *wink wink*

      • hej på dej

        There’s some really dirty history going on back here, yeah.

      • dan citizen

        Everybody has a right to stay warm

        • marathag

          Build a fire for a Man, he is warm for the Night.

          Set the Man on Fire, he is warm for the rest of his life

          • cargosquid

            That is sooooooo wrong.
            Made me giggle.
            Gonna steal it.

    • J.T.

      Sure as hell looks like one.

    • Bubba

      Yes, but those haven’t been in service for years.
      Just like the Mausers in the back.

    • FourString

      Deer Hunter (1978) times yo

  • Bill

    The design of the rifle doesn’t really matter if the user doesn’t have a firm grasp, pardon the pun, of trigger finger discipline

  • 1leggeddog

    Could have sworm that was a cable running from the trigger to the back trigger group…

    • BattleshipGrey

      That’s what it looks like, but I can’t imagine that it would be very sturdy, unless it’s an unusually light trigger.

    • Asdf

      Yeah, I hope that isn’t the trigger linkage.

    • Yes; that is what it says in the article.

      • Giolli Joker

        Actually a curved rod is different from a cable, the former being “rigid” the latter being “flexible”.
        Do we know if that was a rigid linkage of a flexible cable?
        (The words of CarniK Con about the Chinese bullpup AK come to mind…)

  • TB

    I would guess that is an airsoft rifle. Considering the lack of trigger discipline, I can’t imagine that those are real military people, certainly not people that would be involved in the testing of a new prototype rifle.

    • Erik Olofsson

      It’s not new. It’s an experimental prototype wich was brought up for the “lol’s”. It’s stored in a “private”/unofficial museum called an airtight metal box. Hence the old Swedish mausers in the background. The original post also had pictures of STG44’s and MG42’s.

      • TB

        Ok, not airsoft then. And I guess the “private”/unoffical museum part explains the bad trigger discipline, this picture was not taken during the testing of the prototype then.

    • CommonSense23

      Guessing you haven’t been in the military. Trigger discipline varies greatly. Some units are great, some sloppy it all depends where you are.

      • TB

        I was a conscript in the Swedish army (back before our military was all but abolished), and I never saw anyone with bad trigger discipline. Safety was taken very seriously. But sure, that’s just my personal experience, I don’t really know much about other units and their training standards.

        • FourString

          Yeah to be fair, that guy in the pic seems to be almost pointing it at his buddy’s balls

          • Tassiebush

            So that’s why they call it “ball” ammunition…

          • FourString

            Hah..hah, I slap my knee

          • Tassiebush

            hehe glad to hear that!

  • John

    I wonder if ATF would legally let you put an S&H autosear inside?

  • James

    A bullpup SCAR 17S also exists.

    • FourString

      Lol I wonder how that reciprocating charging handle works with a cheek weld o_o”

      • Rusty Shackleford

        Looks like it has a GG&G non-reciprocating charging handle.

        • FourString

          Ahaaaaah I suspecttted it was non-reciprocating!

    • BryanS

      More info?

    • WFA

      Amazing….photoshop?

    • Giolli Joker

      Gorgeous!

  • dan citizen

    I love bullpups, hate external trigger linkage. Didn’t they learn from the Nambu?

    • It’s just a proof-of-concept.

      • dan citizen

        Good point. It’s good enough for testing.

  • Blake

    Wait, AK5, that’s a Kalashnikov converted to 20 caliber, right? &ltgrin&gt

    Some pretty terrible trigger & muzzle discipline in the photo there…

    • Joshua

      No, it is a FN FNC modernized.

      • Blake

        “&ltgrin&gt” means: it’s a joke 🙂

  • n0truscotsman

    Thanks for showing the Enfield. Interesting stuff.

    I wish I would have had that picture a year ago when I got into a rather uncivilized debate with somebody that swore up and down, screaming at the heavens, that the AR18 had absolutely nothing to do with the development of the L85. It was a beast of its own doing, by god, swore the claimant.

  • Aaron E

    The uniforms would seem to indicate military of some sort, but the finger on the trigger sure makes one wonder about the firearms instruction received.
    “Keep the booger picker off the bang switch until ready to fire”

  • Travis

    Not as strange as this bullpup M1903 Springfield.

    • Giolli Joker

      Before the invention of thumbhole…

  • shooter2009

    That is one frikkin’ fugly gun.

  • HSR47

    Actually, my money is on the AK shown using a solenoid to pull the trigger.

    On the British example, note how the traditional external trigger is entirely omitted on the British rifle, while being shrouded on the AK5. Note also that the linkage on the British rifle is practically a straight rod connecting the forward trigger to the sear interface, while on the AK5 it appears to just be a wire (note the clip near the trigger group pins) routed from the grip to the rear of the stock.

  • Vitor Roma

    Jantar means dinner in portuguese, so a funny name for a gun to my ears.