The Russian Military’s Longest Range Rifles and Machine Guns

One of the most famous snipers of World War II was Lyudmila Pavlichenko of the Soviet Union, who earned the name “Lady Death.” Pavlichenko is considered the top female sniper ever and one of the top snipers in history, with a total of 309 confirmed kills. Many other Soviet snipers made a name for themselves, assisted by Soviet-made rifles.

In Russia’s war against Ukraine, small arms are serving an important purpose towards its goals. At the forefront of these Russian small-arms are a few long-range guns that stand out due to their capabilities. Long-range guns have become important tools of modern military forces.

To determine the longest range guns in the Russian military, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed modern Russian guns cataloged by Military Factory, an online database of military vehicles, aircraft, arms, and more. We ranked the guns according to their maximum effective range. Supplemental data on the type of weapon, first year of service, and caliber of ammunition also came from Military Factory.

One of the top guns on this list is the KBP OSV-96, also known as the Vzlomshchik. It was designed with the dual role as both counter-sniping and anti-materiel rifle. It boasts a range of about 6,500 feet, making it one of the longest-range Russian rifles.

Another prominent name on this list is the Dragunov SVD, which has been in use since the 1960s. This Russian-made semi-automatic sniper/designated marksman rifle has a maximum effective range of around 4,200 feet. It has found use in several militaries around the world — namely Russian allies — including Belarus, Iran, and India. (To compare, here are the longest range guns in the U.S. military arsenal.)

Notably on this list, in addition to sniper rifles and anti-materiel rifles, machine guns also rank among the top spots. The Kord-12.7mm and PKP Pecheneg (6P41) machine guns, for example, have among the longest effective ranges on the list. One commonality across most of those weapons is their ammunition. Larger caliber ammunition is generally capable of traveling a greater distance than smaller caliber ammunition, explaining the long ranges of the heavy machine guns near the top of the list.

While some of these weapons have only entered service in the past 10 years, others date back to the 1960s. Despite this, Russia’s military has found use for these long-range rifles in whatever operations it is undertaking. (Also see, 20 biggest bombs in Russia’s military arsenal.)

Here is a look at the longest-range guns in use by the Russian army today.

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