5-Round 8x50R mm Berthier clips – including some copies.
The first image is of the Model 1916 Berthier clip. 1st pattern, which was adopted for the Model 1916 rifle and carbine. The distinguishing feature is the three elongated pressings into each side near the upper edge. The base is two flat faces, angled with respect to each other, resembling two Model 1890 three-round clips joined together. There is a curved (banana shaped) aperture in each side.
Towards the end of the 1950’s the U.S. company, GOLDEN STATE ARMS, arranged for the manufacture in Japan of a copy of the 1916 1st pattern clip. These are stamped SANTA FE, in a shield shaped border and JAPAN and were for the many Berthier rifles and carbines, which were owned by Americans. One of these clips, in blued steel, is shown below. This clip is a close copy of the French clip except the pressing is not quite so neat and, more significantly, the angle between the two base faces is less pronounced.
In March 1925 the 2nd model of the 1916 clip was adopted as a replacement for the preceding type. The distinguishing features are; a single pressed groove instead of the three shorter ones and a groove pressed into the centre of the base. The base of the central cartridge sits upon the resulting internal ridge. Manufacture of this model continued until approximately 1949/50.
I have two clips, which look, at first sight, like copies of the above 2nd type. Each of these is identical except for the surface finish, one is blued and the other is a matt silver grey colour, probably bare steel. Neither of them has any markings.
When compared to the Model 1916 2nd type four principal differences are seen. The base is less angular (like the Santa Fe clips above); there is no central ridge in the base; the apertures have curved lower edges but straight upper edges (not banana shaped) and the cuts through the base where the locking lugs are formed extend over the full width of the clip.
Can anyone offer any information regarding the manufacturer of these last two clips? I welcome any additions or corrections to anything that I have written above.