thanks, I learned something today.
Development of this rifle started in late seventies. The requirements called for a 5.45 mm gas operated rifle with 3-shot burst capability and ability to fire rifle grenades. The designers based their work on the Russian AK-74 although most of the mechanisms are original solutions. First called wz. 81 (model 81) it was accepted by the military in 1990 as "karabinek wz. 89" (carbine model 89). Simultaneously a shortened version was developed and was named wz. 89 (Onyks). Since Poland is to became a NATO member, a 5.56 mm NATO version was developed (wz.90), but was not accepted by the Polish military.
Like the AK-74 the Tantal is a gas-operated automatic rifle. Its receiver is made from sheet metal stampings and houses an all-new trigger mechanism. The characteristic large safety/selector lever of the kalashnikov family has in this weapon a function of safety only. The selector switch has been moved to the left side of the receiver and has three positions:
C - full auto
P - single shot
S - 3-shot burst
The mainspring rod has been modified to prevent the bolt cover from falling of when firing rifle grenades. The gas chamber and the gas cylinder has been simplified. Muzzle brake resembles that of AK-74 but has smaller diameter and is longer to allow it to be used to launch grenades. The folding stock has a shape similar to a design used in East German AKMs but uses a different folding mechanism. Sights can be set for 100-1000 meters and are complemented by a set of tritium illuminated night sights. Some Tantals are equipped with a side plate for mounting optics. The rifle can be equipped with wz. 1974 Pallad 40 mm grenade launcher. Some parts (bolt, bolt carrier and magazines) are interchangeable with AK-74.
Standard equipment consist of four 30-rounds magazines (steel or plastic), a bayonet (identical to that of AKM), sling, blank-firing adapter, canvas magazine pouch, magazine loader and cleaning gear. Additional 60 rounds are carried in four loading strips for a total of 180 rounds. A light, detachable bipod is also available.