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Dragunov SVD



Overview


SVD

SVD sniper rifle on display at a firing range.
Source: www.special-ops.org - © Copyright lies with original owner

Origin
Soviet Union
Type
Marksman rifle
Entered service
1964
Status
In service
Development
1958 - 1963
Developer
Soviet Union - Evgeniy Dragunov
Production
1964 - present
Producer
Soviet Union
China
Unit cost
Number produced
Designations
SVD / Snayperskaya Vintovka Dragunova
SVD-63
SWD (Polish designation)
TKIV Dragunov (Finnish designation)
Type 79 (Chinese production)

Description


Introduction

The SVD is a sniper rifle of Soviet origin. It was developed in the early 1960's to extend the range of squads equipped with the AK-47. The new rifle was called SVD, which stands for "Snayperskaya Vintovka Dragunova", Russian for "Dragunov sniper rifle". The SVD is commonly referred to as the "Dragunov" after its lead designer.

Design

The SVD uses a highly modified version of the Kalashnikov system. Opposed to the AK-47 the SVD has a short stroke gas piston and is semi-automatic only. The SVD is easy to produce and one of the cheaper military semi-automatic sniper rifles. At first the SVD was fitted with wooden handguards and stocks, but since the 90's polymer is also available. The SVD is normally fitted with the 4x24 PSO-1 scope, but can also be fitted with the NSPU-3 night sight. The PSO-1 4x24 scope is very effective, especially the reticule which allows the sniper to accurately estimate the range. The magnification is fixed. A rubber eyepiece gives the correct eye relief. Back-up iron sights are fitted as standard. Since the 80's a bipod is available for the SVD, however most are not fitted with a bipod.

Firepower

The SVD fires the 7.62x54mm Russian round from a 10 round detachable magazine. Normally sniper grade ammunition is used, but regular machine gun ammunition can be used as well. Accuracy averages about 2 MOA, depending on the quality of the gun and ammunition. The effective range of the SVD lies between 600 and 800 meters. Targets can be engaged up to 1000 meters, but may require repetitive fire. The PSO-1 4x scope is not ideal for firing at ranges of over 600 meters.

Users

The SVD is was widely issued among Soviet and Eastern European troops. It remains in active use today. For true sniping purposes the SVD has often been replaced with better quality rifles. The SVD has been widely exported and produced with or without license in many nations. It remains one of the most widely used types of sniper rifle in military service today.

Details


Facts SVD
General
Origin
Soviet Union
Type
Sniper rifle
Caliber
Caliber
7.62x54mm Russian
Feed system
10 round detachable box
Barrel length
620 mm
Rifling
4 grooves, right hand 240 mm or 320 mm twist
Muzzle velocity
830 m/s
Operation
Action
Gas operated, short stroke gas piston
Locking
Rotating bolt
Fire selector
0 - 1
Rate of fire
Semi-automatic
Dimensions
Stock type
Fixed
Length
1.225 mm
Weight
4.30 kg empty with scope
Sights
Optics
PSO-1 4x scope
Mechanical
Iron sights, 0 to 1200 m adjustable
Sight radius
540 mm
Accessories
Bipod
Optional

Media


Related articles


Dragunov SVDS

The SVDS is a shorter variand of the SVD with folding stock. It was developed as a more compact weapon for use by paratroopers.

PSL

The Romanian PSL looks very similar to the Soviet SVD and is a similar performance. However, the PSL uses a different gas system and no parts are interchangeable.