The Dragunov Sniping Rifle System, Year of 1963, or SVD or “Dragunov” for short, has since the early 1960s (like its name implies) been one of the premier squad designated marksman weapons in the world. The longest-serving purpose-designed squad marksman rifle in the world, the SVD is chambered for the powerful and plentiful 7.62x54mmR cartridge (itself a record-setter, as it is the military service cartridge that has served its parent country the longest, of all time) and feeds from a 10-shot detachable box magazine. Given its age, the rifle could perhaps use some updating to modern standards, which is where Val of Czech company Sureshot Armament Group comes in, with his KeyMod-compatible chassis design for the venerable Dragunov, pictures of which are embedded below:
The chassis bolts to the rifle’s sight rail and existing forend and stock mounting points, and provides a full-length top 1913 Picatinny rail, seven rows of KeyMod attachment points, and a standard AR-15 buffer tube stock adapter at the rear. All three portions of the chassis are milled of aluminum alloy, and not only free-float the barrel/gas block assembly, but also match the stock and rail height to that of an AR-15, allowing the same optics height as would be used with that weapon family. An excellent feature Val included is that the chassis does not interfere with field-stripping of the weapon, allowing – finally – the use of low-profile optics without needing to remove them for cleaning.
I can’t help but think Russian military officials would be interested in such a system for their Ratnik program. The SVD continues to serve the Russian Army for the foreseeable future, and such an upgrade could seriously augment the rifle’s capabilities. Other nations, such as the Ukraine, also continue to use the SVD and may be interested.