He had been in hospital for more than a month with heart problems.
The AK-47 — “Avtomat Kalashnikov” and the year it went into production — is favored by guerrillas, terrorists and the soldiers of many armies. An estimated 100 million guns are spread worldwide.
Kalshnikov, who was in his 20s when he created the weapon, died in his home city of Izhevsk, near the Ural Mountains, where his gun is still made.
He once aspired to design farm equipment. But even though his most famous invention — the AK-47 assault rifle — sowed havoc instead of crops, he often said he felt personally untroubled by his contribution to bloodshed.
“I sleep well. It’s the politicians who are to blame for failing to come to an agreement and resorting to violence,” he said in 2007.