Type 97 Data
800px-Type 97 tank machine gun

Type 97 LMG

Catridge 7.7mm x 58mm Arisaka

Projectile Weight

AP: 0.4oz/11,3g

Incindiary: 0.35oz/9.8g

Muzzle Velocity 2,460fps/750mps
Range 1,970'/600m
Rate of Fire


In the beginning of the second Sino-Japanese war, Japanese forces captured several Czech ZB vz/26 light machine guns from defeated Chinese forces. Upon reviewing the many technological advances compared to the modified Year 11 Type LMG (Type 92 mobile machine gun), which were in current use by the Army Technical Bureau on armored vehicles, the Type 97 was quickly developed and put into action by 1937.

In essence, the Type 97 is the ZB vz/26, with a different stock and pistol grip. Fed by a 20 round detachable box magazine, the Type 97 was used on all armored vehicles until the end of World War II. In this application, it was fitted with a 1.5x telescopic scope with a 30* field of view, with a rubber eye pad.

While it saw use as a stand alone infantry weapon, and as an aerial machine gun, its heavy weight (12,4kg) made it impractical in either application.