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The Degtyarov Light Machine Gun or DP is a gas-operated, light machine gun that was used by the Soviet Union during World War II.

Description

The original designation is either DP-27 or DP-28 and the DP was nicknamed the "recordplayer" for the distinctive pan magazine (referred to indigenously as a "disk") on top of the gun.[1]

The pan magazine had a bullet capacity of 47 rounds and the rate of fire was 550-600 rounds per minute. The DP's weight was about 9 kg and the length was 126.6 cm. It took the 7.62x54mmR Cartridge and it had a leaf-type of rear sight and a front post-type of sight. The DP became one of the standard Soviet weapons and it was mass-produced to meet up with demand.

Variants

The first variant of the DP LMG series was the DPM which was a modernized (hence "M") version of the original DP LMG and it had several improvements made to it. These included a new bipod and a revised pistol grip.[2] It began production in 1943 and one final improvement is a new barrel design. The DT and DTM are basically the same as the DP and DPM only that they have been modified to be mounted inside of vehicles such as the T-34 or T-26 ("T" for "tank). To fit this new role, they had a pan magazine that was much taller in height then that of the DP or DPM.

The DA was also basically the same as the DP or DPM only it had been fitted to be used in aircraft ("A", "aviatsyonny"). After World War II a new version of the DPM was created and was designated the RP-46. A number of improvements and changes were made including the fact that the RP-46 was belt fed. A Chinese version of the RP-46 was also made and designated the Type 58.

History

The DP was introduced to the Red Army in 1928 and it was used all the way through World War II and into the 1950s. DPs and DPMs were used throughout the Red Army in many battles along the Eastern Front including the Battle of Kursk.

It had earned a reputation of mass production and reliability which were both true as they were proven during World War II. Not all DPs were used by the Red Army during World War II; Finnish troops who captured them during The Winter War and used them against Soviet forces. Typically, the DP was assigned one to each fire squad; this was similar to the arrangements of many other armies. In total, around 800,000 examples had been produced. The machine gun is still used today by North Korea.

References

  1. http://www.militaryfactory.com/smallarms/detail.asp?smallarms_id=413
  2. http://world.guns.ru/machine/rus/dp-dpm-rp-46-e.html

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