7,65 Browning GEL and SB headstamp


Please help to correct identify 2 headstamps in 7,65x17 Browning cases.

First one: G E * L *, probably Georg Egestorff, Linden bei Hannover ?

Second: S B 7,65. with SINOXID primer and red seal. 7,65. front similar to RWS and Geco.


Correct on the first, SB is Sellier & Bellot.

Thanks Curtis,
The IAA Headstamp Reference page has:
SB Sellier and Bellot, Schoenbeck/Elbe, Germany 15
SBP Sellier & Bellot, Prague, Czechoslovakia (now Czech Republic) Factory in Vlasim 1
I assume S&B is Czechoslovakia, but are all SB’s made in Germany? Or were many SB headstamps also made in Czechoslovakia, or other countries with Sellier & Bellot factories?

Sellier and Bellot had Factories in Schonebeck Germany, Vlasim, Prague in Czech Republic and in Riga, Latvia. Those made in Riga were labelled SB R. In Schonebeck they made shotshells but did make pistol/revolver calibers such as these headstamps below with the 4 section lines, as well as SB S markings and SB PZM. The Schonebeck factory was sold to Steyr Munitions in 1921.I would say yours was made in Czechoslovakia. SB in Czech republic often used green and Red primer paint seals. Maybe some of the European members have more information to weigh in on or add to this.
sb 380 lines sb pzm 763 sb s stars lines sb schonebeck 1 37

(Edited for design change only)

The “SB” was made by Sellier & Bellot Schönebeck, that was authorized by RWS to use Sinoxid primers.

Do you know when this was made. Pre 1921 for sure, but do you have a closer date?

Curtis, it must be from the 1930’s, but I don’t know the exact date.



But SB sold the Schonebeck Factory in 1921 as per Sellier Bellots own History account. This is why I thought this could not be made in Schonebeck. Did Steyr use the SB Headstamp?

  • The plant in Schönebeck is removed from the ownership of Sellier & Bellot and comes under the direct ownership of the Steyr munitions company."

In short, Steyr sold the company to Fritz Mandl of Hirtenberger about 1930.
When the Nazis came to power, it was taken over in October 1933 by Rheinmetall and Dynamit AG.
Over the entire time the Name Sellier & Bellot stayed in use, until the nationalization by East Germany in 1947.

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I would not at all be surprised if the S B 7.65 headstamped cartridges with Sinoxid primer and red primer seals were not made by Geco (or RWS if before the working agreement of the c.1927 when Geco made all the commercial pistol ammunition with both GECO and RWS headstamps). My reason for this comes from both cartridge characteristics and the headstamping itself, not even to mention the “O” marked Sinoxid primer.

I have two variations of the Schönebeck-made “SB” headstamped cartridges ( /SB//S/ )
one having a CNCS FMJ RN Bullet and the other a CN FMJ RN bullet. The two cartridges, other than the difference in bullet jacket material, as essentially identical.

I also have the S B 7,65. headstamped round. I compared it to a typical RWS headstamped round and both are identical to each other other than the factory designater. Especially telling is the dot after the “7.65.” on the SB round, as well as the printing font of the caliber marking. The dots in various numbers and in positions before and after the factory designater and before and after the caliber marking, possibly a machine identification marking or even a date code, is typical of RWS/GECO 7.65 mm cartridges from about the 1930s. These dots can be found in any of the positions mentioned above, or all of them - in short, a single dot, two dots, three dots or dots in all four places. Both have identical extractor grooves and extractor groove bevels, which differ from those of the /SB//S/ rounds, which certainly were made by Sellier & Bellot Schönebeck. Both have the red primer seal and case-mouth seal common to the RWS/GECO cartridges. Both have the same exact ogive to the bullets, both of which are CN RN FMJ.

Since the S&B Schöbeck was taken over in 1933 by Rheinmetall and Dynamit A.-G., and there had been an amalgamation of RWS with Dynamit A.-G. in 1931, It seems quite plausible that either GECO of RWS (under the 1927 working agreement) could have made these cartridges, perhaps as a sub-contract from D.A.G. for their Sellier & Bellot branch.

First and foremost, though, it goes back to the cartridge characteristics of the S B 7.65. round, which are purely GECO/RWS.

Just my thoughts on this.

John Moss

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I forgot to mention that the same basic headstamp style exists on a .380 Auto (9 mm Kurz) cartridge in my collection, headstamp S.B. 9m/m K. and with characteristics of a standard RWS/GECO pistol cartridge of the 1930s complete with “O” Sinoxid primer and red primer seals. This one, though, has a CNCS bullet, not unusual with Dynamit A.-G. pistol rounds of the time.

There is also a .25 Auto (6.35 mm) “S B 6,35” headstamp round, again, purely GECO/RWS Specs. CN FMJ RN bullet, “o” primer, etc.

John Moss

These may fit in with this post. The SB has less dots and a different 7 maybe…
3 hs
3 pro

Dan - in your picture, it appears there is an anomaly on the SB 7.65 Para headstamp that has cut off the small hook on the horizontal line in “7”. Note the other numbers are basically identical to the Geco and RWS headstamped rounds in your picture. Also, not the marking separating the “7” and the “6” on all three headstamps, which I assume is meant to be a comma. That is typical GECO/RWS/Dynamit A.-G. Also note the color-tone of the primer and case-mouth seals, all identical. I believe these cartridges were made in the 1930s, from the characteristics, and that GECO was the actual maker of all three, as explained in my entry above. Just my opinion, but one not without some corroborating factors present.

John Moss

It is quite likely that the S&B Schönebeck pistol cartridges with Sinoxid primers were manufactured by RWS, because S&B boxes are in fact RWS boxes with a pasted S&B label.

Here you can see what is below the S&B label in this .380 Auto box (headstamp is S.B. 9m/m K.):

Patronen Cal. 9 mm Kurz (Oeldicht) (S.B. 9 mm k.)

Patronen Cal. 9 mm Kurz (Oeldicht) (S.B. 9 mm k.)a

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Fede - my only question about RWS being the actual manufacturer of the ammunition is the working agreement of 1927 that had Geco making the pistol cartridges, both with Geco headstamps and RWS headstamps (I have one 7.65 mm Browning round headstamped GECO-RWS). RWS was making the rifle ammunition for both. Since Geco was making RWS headstamped commercial pistol cartridges, it would only stand to reason that they would box them in the Red-color RWS boxes, rather than the very similar design Geco blue boxes. If making them also for Sellier & Bellot Schönebeck, at the time I believe these were made also within the authority of Dynamit A.-G., as was Geco and RWS, they could have used either boxes for over-labeling, but since the over-label was a reddish-tone, it would have only made sense to use the RWS boxes to lessen any “under-color” of blue showing up thru the top label.

Once again, just my thoughts on this. Great box label, by the way. Thanks for labeling, and it certainly confirmed my thoughts that either RWS or GECO actually made this ammunition, rather than the Schönebeck factory of Sellier & Bellot simply using Sinoxid primers.

John Moss