The QJY-88, also known as the Type 88 light machine gun (88式通用机枪, 1988 shì tōngyòng jīqiāng, Type 88 general purpose machine gun) is a Chinese light machine gun.
The QJY-88 was one of the first new weapons to chamber the then-new proprietary 5.8×42mm cartridge. The QJY-88 was designed as a lightweight weapon with excellent portability and a high rate of fire among other factors, and was designed to replace the Type 67 machine gun that was going obsolete at the time. Prototypes were first made in 1989, but the QJY-88 was only approved for production 10 years later, in 1999. Scarce information about the weapon's service life is available, as it is speculated that the QJY-88 only entered service in the early 2000s. However, it is known that the QJY-88 is currently in service with the People's Liberation Army.
Unfortunately, the QJY-88 isn't much of a popular choice of firearm for use in the People's Liberation Army. When compared to a similar weapon like an M249 machine gun, the QJY-88 delivers the same amount of stopping power, but is much heavier.
The QJY-88 is a gas-operated machine gun chambered for the proprietary 5.8×42mm bullet; the reason as to why this bullet was chosen to be chambered in this weapon is that it allows for a supposedly lighter weapon with minimal differences in stopping power when compared to western designs like the M249, which supposedly also makes it more portable. Cartridges are fed into the weapon via a disintegrating belt from the left side.
The weapon can be mounted on a tripod for suppressive fire, but comes standard with a bipod clamped to the barrel.
The QJY-88 uses the 5.8×42mm bullet, supposedly a heavier load chambered specifically for machine guns.