The MG 13 (shortened from German Maschinengewehr 13) was a German general-purpose machine gun obtained by rebuilding a World War I water-cooled machine gun into an air-cooled version.
The MG 13 was introduced into service in 1930, where it served as the standard light machine gun. It was superseded by cheaper, faster firing models: the MG 34 and then later the MG 42. It was officially withdrawn from service in 1934; most of the MG 13s were sold to Portugal, where they were used into the late 1940s as the Metralhadora 7,92 mm m/938 Dreyse. Those MG 13s that were not sold were placed into storage, and these later saw use in World War II by second line German units.
The MG 13 was designed to work with either a 25 round box magazine or a 75 round saddle drum. It was equipped with a folding butt stock and a carrying handle. It was used in the tail gunner's position in the Ju 87 Stuka dive bomber and in the turret of the Panzer I tank.
The Chinese Nationalist Government also imported the MG 13 with the Panzer I tank from Germany. The MG 13 was also used against the Japanese Imperial Army during the Second Sino-Japanese War.
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