The Type 2 flexible machine gun was developed for aerial use for the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II. It was an adaptation of the German MG131 machine gun. The only differences from the German weapon is the simple aluminium slap grip section and the IJN type sights.
The Type 2 flexible machine gun was a licence biult copy of the MG131 machine gun in the original percussion ignition form of the weapon. The Navy did not feed that electric ignition could be expected to be reliable in the tropical marine environment where rapid corrosion of critical contacts was the rule so bought the earlier version. The Navy contract for the gun with Rheinmettall Borsig included technical assistance not only with the gun but with various projectile types as well. No significant changes were made to the gun in Japanese service though there were some substitution of wood for plastic parts. The gun was produced as a free gun only, probably becouse of the same difficulty with spring manufacture that prevented Army production of the Type 98 (MG17) fixed machine gun.