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It was chambered for the new 7.62x39mm M43 Cartridge and it was fed by 100 round belts that were kept in special ammo drums that are connected to the underside of the gun.
The RPD has no semi-automatic setting and can only fire in full automatic. The RPD also had an integrated bipod and could be equipped with a sling. It had a rate of fire of about 650 rounds per minute and the muzzle velocity was about 735m/sec. The RPD could also fire only in fully automatic. The stock on the RPD was made of wood and the entire RPD weighed about 7.4 kg. The entire length was 103.7 cm and the barrel length was about 52 cm. The effective range of the RPD was from 800 meters to about 1,000 meters. The rear iron sights on the RPD are also adjustable.
The RPD was first developed in 1943 and it was designed by Vasily Degtyaryov. The RPD itself was designed to replace the older DP LMG and become the new standard squad automatic weapon for the Red Army. The RPD did not see mass production until the early 1950s, but a small amount were produced during World War II. Still, it is unknown whether any were actually delivered to Red Army troops, although, it probably was. The RPD was used extensively after World War II by the Soviet Union, the North Vietnamese, etc. However, in the 1960s, in Soviet service, the RPD was replaced by the Kalashnikov-Designed RPK.