TFBTV: Swedish Roots, Egyptian Steel: The Rasheed

    The Egyptian Rasheed is quite a rare firearm. Only 5,000-8,000 were produced and it is based on the Swedish AG42 self-loading rifle. The Egyptians previously used the AG42 as the basis for their 8mm Hakim rifle, but scaled the design down for the 7.62×39 cartridge and the Rasheed was born.

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    This video has English and French subtitles (thanks Julian), with German, Japanese and Russian being added soon.

    The full transcript is below …

    Most people who look at this rifle assume it’s an SKS.

    It looks a lot like one, it’s got a bayonet that is interchangeable, and it fires the same cartridge.

    In fact, what you’re looking at is an Egyptian Rasheed.

    More specifically, this example was imported from a short-lived state called the United Arab Republic, as indicated by the import mark, saying UAR.

    This was between Egypt and Syria and only lasted a few years.

    The Rasheed borrows heavily from the Swedish AG42 Ljungman.

    You can see that they both have a similar layout in the receiver, but the charging’s different.

    On the Ljungman, you don’t have a charging handle like you do on the Rasheed.

    There was an intermediary called the Hakim that fired 8mm, produced in Egypt.

    Seen here is how you charge the Ljungman rifle, which is very dangerous.

    You see by pushing the dustcover forward and then pulling back, it allows you to load via stripper clip.

    Although, if you push back too far, it sends the bolt carrier all the way home.

    This makes Garand thumb look like a booboo.

    You properly have to engage the safety and then perform this action, although in the heat of battle I can imagine people accidentally forgot to do that.

    Cleaning the Rasheed is quite easy.

    Pull the bolt to the rear, and it will lock back as long as there’s no cartridges in the magazine.

    Remove the magazine by pulling a lever back and then pushing it forward.

    Sometimes it’s a little stubborn.

    Let the bolt ride forward, and then the safety must be moved to the middle while pushing the dustcover forward and then lifting out the safety assembly.

    After this, the dustcover will come off from the rear, and this will allow you to remove the carrier and the bolt from the rear as well.

    This rifle functions very similarly to an FN FAL with a tilting bolt.

    As mentioned, you can load these with stripper clips, but I prefer the old-fashioned way of clicking individual rounds in.

    Right here, I just clicked in five different rounds of 7.62×39.

    This is good old cheap steel-cased ammunition I believe I got from Academy Sports and Outdoors.

    After that, it was ready to fire the rifle, and have some fun. (gunshots firing) I can only describe the recoil impulse as familiar.

    It fires very much like a MAS-49/56 with that unique DI impulse offered by true DI rifles, not AR-15 style DI.

    Again, I decided to dump a quick 10 rounds here, (gunshots firing) which was a lot of fun, and I really enjoy running this rifle quickly.

    But then again, who doesn’t like spewing 7.62×39, being as how it’s pretty inexpensive.

    Again, I loaded another 10 rounds and got back to it, but this time I had a malfunction.

    This gun does have a gas regulator on the front that’s adjustable, but I’m afraid to mess with it for fear of making things worse.

    The original Ljungman did not have this feature.

    Here at about 25 yards I tested it for accuracy, and I was able to group about an inch while kneeling and kinda shooting quickly, which was not bad.

    Again, I really like my kneeling stance.

    For some reason, I’ve always preferred it to prone or standing.

    And here I had another malfunction.

    I really do wanna get the gas regulator tool to mess with that and hopefully get that sorted out.

    You can see this one actually took a little while to get it straightened out, but it got back ticking as soon as I got the round chambered.

    Regardless of the fact that it malfunctions, it still is a really fun rifle to shoot.

    Now here yet again, I tried to quickly dump as many rounds as I could, (gunshots firing) but a malfunction occurred one more time.

    I cleared it, but it still was a pain.

    There’s really not much more I can say about the Rasheed.

    It would seem that they’re finicky, or at least this example is, and maybe there’s a reason they only made 5,000 to 8,000.

    Perhaps it worked best in the Hakim or the Ljungman system where the cartridges were larger and more powerful, and scaling it down just didn’t work too well.

    Like I said, only 5,000 to 8,000 were produced, and it would seem like most of these were actually exported to the civilian market.

    Regardless, being as how cheap and available SKS rifles are, I’d take one over this any day.

    This is Alex C. with

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    Alex C.

    Alex is a Senior Writer for The Firearm Blog and Director of TFBTV.