9MM Kurz

I have four 9mm Kurz that I need help identifying the headstamps on.
12 o’clock 3 6 9
#1 T . C K E M
#2 T . C F A A
#3 NOTHING 8 9mmK Q
Spacing on last one is 120 degrees apart and has a line across the head so I assume a arsenal reload.
#4 S 11 16

Carolyn - in the absence of photographs, it took me awhile to figure these out. Sometimes headstamps typed on line are obvious and easy to identify - other times, it is hard to draw an image of them.

Your first two are Turkish. The “T.C” stands for Türkiye Cumhuriyeti" (Turkish Republic) and the A. F. Stands for “Askeri Fabrikalar” (Military Factory). I have never been sure what the character at six o’clock is - it looks at first like an “A” but it not identical to the “A” at 3 o’clock - not what it stands for. The letters on the second one, properly read as “MKE” stand for Makina ve Kimya Endustrisi (Machine and Chemical Industries).

The third one is one of a long series combining the letters of the alphabelt with a number 7 or 8.
It is a date code for sure, but I am not positive how it works. The rounds were made for the Republic of South Africa during the embargo on the sale of arms and ammunition to that country, and are of Hirtenberger, Austrian, manufacture.

Your “S” headstamp was made in November 1916 by the Königliche Munitionsfabrik Spandau, in Germany. I do not know exactly why the have the single line across the headstamps, but I do not believe that it represents a reload. I have never seen one of these 9 mm Kurz German WWI military rounds without the line. The 9 mm Browning Long cartridges produced at Spandau have the more traditional lines separating the headstamp into 4 segments, even though on that cartridge, as on the 9 mm Kurz, there are only three entries.

I hope this is of some assistance.

Dear Carolyn,
Further to JM’s excellent interpretation of the Turkish-made 9mm K cartridges, just a few extra bits on info.

AF A Askeri Fabrikalar Ankara== Military Factories (Administration,) Ankara…from about 1922 to 1950, all the Military/Ordnance Factories were controlled by “ASFA” which had its headquarters in the Capital, Ankara.
That also “dates” your cartridge to a 1922-1950 Time period.

MKE By 1951, the ASFA had been re-organised into the Makina ve Kemia Endustrisi Kurumu ( Machine and Chemical Industries Corporation), with headquarters in Kirikkale ( By then a Suburb of Ankara–originally (in 1930s) an Outlying Town…where the ASFA Rifle Factory was established with Czechoslovak Assistance.) MKE became the sole HS for Military acquired Ammunition for Turkey from 1951-52 onwards.
SO that Places the MKE cartridge in the Post-1951 period.

Another feature, as most Pistol ammo made by ASFA/MKE was also sold to Police and Civilian markets, NO year date was included. If one ever comes across Turkish Pistol ammo with a Year Date, then it is definitely ONLY for the Turkish Military…I have not seen any yet, although some late manufacture 9x19 Para may have the year date included…

…JM, any Turkish 9 Para with year dates??

Given the wide range of Pistol calibres used by Turkey (Ottoman and Republic) the Ammo factories made quite a few Calibres ( Most common, 7,65Br.,7,63 Mauser, .38 CF, 9mm K, 9mm Browning Long, 9mm Para. --other earlier(BP) Calibres may have been assembled in Turkey as well, pre-WW I)

Doc AV
AV Ballistics.


Thanks for the additional information. Yes, there are dated MKE headstamps in 9 mm Para. Lew
Curtis reports one with the date “97” in his book, and I have one headstamped MKE 05 9P in my own collection. There may be other dates, of course. There is also on specificially headstamped for the MP5 submachine gun. I don’t have it but Curtis’ fine work on 9 mm shows a photo of an unprimed empty case. It is NOT dated though, but I thought it interesting enough to report here.

John, the only MKE 9 mm MP-5 box I’ve seen is dated July 1996, and as far as I can tell, it was first reported by collectors in 1998. Turkish MKE licensed production of the H&K MP5A3 started back in 1984.