MG 30

The Maschinengewehr 30, or MG 30 was a German-designed machine gun that saw some service with various armed forces in the 1930s. It was also modified to become the standard German aircraft gun as the MG 15 and MG 17. It is most notable as the design pattern that led to the MG 34 and MG 42, and thus is one of the major ancestors of many of the weapons in service which would later find widespread use into the 21st century.

MG 30
Class Manportable
Type Machine Guns
Manufacturer Steyr Mannlicher
Production Period 1930 - 1940
Origin Austria
Country Name Origin Year
Austria 1930
ManufacturerName Production From Production To Quantity
Steyr Mannlicher 1930 1940 View

The gun is an air-cooled, recoil-operated design, firing standard 7.92×57mm Mauser ammunition, fed from a slightly curved 30-round magazine inserted in the left side of the weapon. It uses a locking ring, which is located at the end of the barrel extension, to lock the bolt. Inside the locking ring, there are six sets of locking lugs, arranged as an interrupted thread, which mate with lugs cut at the rear of the bolt. Rotation of the ring, which locks and unlocks the bolt, is controlled by rollers mounted on the outside of the ring. Upon recoil, these rollers follow cam tracks cut into the receiver. The gun is of relatively simple design, with most parts having a round cross-section. The tubular receiver is an extension of the barrel jacket. The butt hosts a tube which contains the return spring and its guide.

The MG 30 fired both in semi-automatic and full automatic mode depending on how far the two-stage trigger is pulled, with a rate of fire between 600 and 800 rounds per minute in full-auto. It included a folding bipod attached two-thirds down the barrel.

Type Machine gun
Place of origin Austria, Switzerland
Service history
In service 1930s–1940s
Used by Austria, Bulgaria, El Salvador, Germany, Hungary
Wars World War II
Production history
Designer Louis Stange
Manufacturer Steyr-Werke AG
Variants MG 15, MG 17 (Both used in aircraft)
Weight 12 kg (26 lb)
Cartridge 7.92×57mm Mauser, 8×56mmR, 7×57mm Mauser
Action Recoil
Rate of fire 600–800 RPM
Muzzle velocity 807.92 m/s (2,650 ft/s)
Feed system 30-Round magazine, 25-Round magazine (8×56mmR)

End notes