Lahti-Saloranta M-26

The Lahti-Saloranta M/26 (alternatively LS/26) is a light machine gun which was designed by Aimo Lahti and Arvo Saloranta in 1926. The weapon was able to fire in both full automatic and semi-automatic modes. Both 20-round box and 75-round drum magazines were produced, but the Finnish army seems to have only used the smaller 20-round magazine.

Lahti-Saloranta M-26
Class Manportable
Type Machine Guns
Manufacturer Valtion Kivaaritehdas (VKT)
Production Period 1930 - 1950
Origin Finland
Country Name Origin Year
Finland 1925
Country Name Operational Year Retirement Year
Burma 1937 1945 View
Finland 1939 1940 View
Finland 1941 1944 View
Finland 1944 1945 View
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Valtion Kivaaritehdas (VKT) 1930 1950 6200 View

On the battlefield, the Lahti-Saloranta M/26 was found to be hard to clean due to the 188 parts of the gun, heavy and lacking in magazine capacity. It was nicknamed Kootut virheet, "assorted mistakes". On the other hand, proficient gunners liked and took full advantage of the exceptional accuracy of the weapon, and with oiling adapted for winter, it turned out to be very reliable.

Due to the problems first encountered by Finnish troops, they often preferred the Degtyarev light machine gun when thousands of them were captured from the Soviets and used against their former owners. All in all, in the summer of 1944, only 3,400 M/26s were at the front, compared to over 9,000 Degtyarevs.

On the battlefield, the Lahti-Saloranta M/26 was found to be hard to clean due to the 188 parts of the gun, heavy and lacking in magazine capacity. It was nicknamed Kootut virheet, "assorted mistakes". On the other hand, proficient gunners liked and took full advantage of the exceptional accuracy of the weapon, and with oiling adapted for winter, it turned out to be very reliable.

Due to the problems first encountered by Finnish troops, they often preferred the Degtyarev light machine gun when thousands of them were captured from the Soviets and used against their former owners. All in all, in the summer of 1944, only 3,400 M/26s were at the front, compared to over 9,000 Degtyarevs.

Type Light machine gun
Place of origin Finland
Service history
In service 1930-1950s
Wars Winter War

Second Sino-Japanese War

Continuation War

Lapland War
Production history
Designer Aimo Lahti & Arvo Saloranta
Designed 1925
Manufacturer Valtion kivääritehdas
Number built > 6200
Variants LS-26-31 (able to accommodate the 75-round drum magazine)
Specifications
Weight 9.3 kg
Length 1,109 mm
Barrel length 500 mm
Cartridge 7.62×53mmR
Action Short-recoil operation
Rate of fire 450 to 550 round/min
Muzzle velocity 800 m/s (2,624 ft/s)
Effective firing range 400 m
Feed system 20- or 75-round magazine

End notes