9x23 Steyr ID of time period

Dutch - There are two headstamps - PS and PA. The headstamps have similar patterns and content, but not identical, and the fonts of the two headstamps are quite different from each other. However, if you ignore the headstamps, the two cartridges are absolutely Identical, and I do mean “IDENTICAL.” I had both in my collection.

All I can tell you about these rounds is that the few specimens I know of were all found in Viet Nam during the prolonged war there. It is my opinion both were made at the same basic time, and both by the same factory, despite a “43” PS headstamp and a “44” PA Headstamp. I would not bet that either round is made by Povazske Strojarne or at Pirotehnia Armatei (Romania). As I recall, the color-tone of the CNCS projectile matched best that of FN-made rounds from WWII, although it is my belief these rounds were made after WWII.

Unless someone finds a document, I doubt we will ever know with 100% certainty who made these.

The “M” was evidently used on newly made ammunition until 1935 but I’m finding information that shows it continued to be used by Brno before the war, during by Waffenwerke Brünn A.G., and after by PS. Does anyone have more information about this?

I’m asking this question again because I’m starting to find evidence to convince myself but I don’t want to think that I’m discovering something that it is already knew and published somewhere. Was the “Z” headstamp with “stars” made before the war?

FWIW in the thread ‘15x96 MG151/15 headstamps question’ viewtopic.php?f=8&t=14424
AveDanzig provided a series of headstamp pictures of 15x96mm MG rounds including one with the ‘BE’ identifier mark for Waffenwerke Bruenn, Wsetin plant, Czechoslovakia. Also on this headstamp there is a ‘Z’ inside two concentric circles at the 6 o’clock position.

Is this the same ‘Z’ being discussed here?


Yes, it is related because “PS” was bought by “ZB” (Brno) in 1934 and used the “Z” since then.

Brian, that is also the Brno trademark but was made at the Vsetín plant (Wsetin in German). A more detailed “Z” could be stamped in larger cases, like the one you mention or the one found in 37 mm and bigger calibers which are very similar to the “Z inside a rifled barrel bore”.

Fede, regarding M:
Forgive me for again coming back to the book by Smatana. My interpretation is that M was clearly used by by the old Roth Factory in Bratislava. M is mostly shown on old calibres. For example, 11.6x56R had M (“v Bratislave” in the book), then Z between 1937-1939 and PS after that.

On the other hand, 8x71 Peterlongo only is shown with headstamp M. From what I gather, production after 1945 (“po roku 1945” in the book) used old cases originally made in Bratislava.

It is a pity we have no one on this forum who can read Slovak.

JPeelen, what I’m trying to say is that the timeline that establish that M was superseeded by Z, and then by PS is not correct. Is much more complicated than that and that’s what I’m trying to understand. The combination of headstamps, primers and boxes is telling a different story.

The manufacture of the “M” headstamp was supposed to end in 1934 but it was used until 1935 (the “Z” was used in headstamps by Brno since July 1st, 1934). Also, primers can be found unmarked or marked M, Z and T3, and ammunition can be found packed in Z, Waffenwerke Brünn and PS boxes. This could mean that cases with this headstamp were not manufactured anymore but there is no doubt that the loading of these continued after 1946.

The “Z” inside an unfinished circle, or inside a full circle, with or without stars, and with or without radial lines was supposed to end in 1945 and superseded by PS with the creation of PS Považská Bystrica on March 7, 1946, and this includes military and commercial ammunition. Primers can be found unmarked or marked Z and T3, and ammunition can be found packed in Z, Waffenwerke Brünn and PS boxes.

There is no doubt that the “Z” alone or inside an unfinished or finished circle was made before the war but I’m not so sure about the commercial headstamps showing stars or stars with separating radial lines. Anyway, both headstamps can be found packed in PS boxes.

To complicate things further, post-war military ammunition bearing the “Z” code was made by ZB, Závod Vlašim between October 28, 1945 and July 26, 1949. This should not be confused with the post-war use of the commercial “Z” by PS.

To complicate things further, post-war military ammunition bearing the “Z” code was made by ZB, Závod Vlašim between October 28, 1945 and July 26, 1949. This should not be confused with the post-war use of the commercial “Z” by PS.[/quote]

Fede, do you think the 7.92x57 with hs:
Z * 4 47
Z * 4 48

Were commercial products?

Was the Z used by both plants because they belonged to Brno at this time?

Alex, these are military cartridges designated “7.92 mm Ostrý Náboj vz. 47” and produced by ZB, Závod Vlašim. As far as I know PS Považská Bystrica didn’t belonged to Brno and had its own military style headstamp at this time (i.e. 19 PS 47 IV).

Fede, as per the available info PS was bought by Brno in 1934.

Alex, I guess you mean Zbrojovka Brno bought Považská Bystrica in 1934, but this was actually a newly constructed factory which in 1946 became Považské Strojárne, národný podnik, Považská Bystrica. You can find early post-war labels that read “formerly Československá Zbrojovka Brno a. s., Považská Bystrica”. I’m not aware of any document, catalog or label mentioning Brno as the owner of Považské Strojárne. Am I wrong?

Fede, now I am lost.
I have to review Smatana (my Czech sucks, that may be the reason why I have gotten things wrong then) and ask some Slovak researchers.

Can you give a time line of Brno in relation to PB and PS as you see it at the moment?

The following information may be of some help:

After takeover of the majority of shares of ‘Pressburger I. Roth A.G.’ by Waffenwerke AG in Brünn [Zbrojovka Brno] the factory was moved [sic] from Pressburg to Bisteritz an der Waag.

Source: October 1928 [sic] issue of Zeitschrift für das gesamte Schieß- und Sprengstoffwesen, page 361.

Pressburg ist the German name for Bratislava.
Bisteritz an der Waag (or Waagbistritz) is the German name for Povazska Bystrica. As a side note, Slovakia belonged to the Hungarian half of the Austrian Empire, so wouldn’t ‘Vagbeszterce’ be the appropriate name for this town? :-)
I suspect it is “I. Roth” for “Jiri Roth” which in the process of nostrification was used instead of the German “Georg Roth”.

JPeelen, your thought on Jiri and Georg is correct.

Here for example what threw me so far and in regard to what we have heard from Fede:

I am sure the answer is simple but we just have to find it.

I think Povazske Strojarne is the factory name while Povazske Bystrica is the city it is located in.
Also G. Roth being the predecessor of PS is so far what was I had found before.
Maybe we have to find the year of the real takeover? As said I had 1934.
Still have to look up Smatana.

I think Povazske Bystrica can be rendered in English as Rapids on the River Vah, Vah being the Slovakian name of the river known in German as Waag. Jack

The German (Austro-Hungarian) name for the city was “Waagbistritz” and the Hungarians named it “Vágbeszterce”.

Alex, here is a new compilation of the timeline for cartridges headstamped JR, M, Z, P14A, dou., and PS. I’m not ignoring what has been published before but there are some discrepancies that I’m not able to verify and sometimes the only option I have is to choose what seems to be the most trustable information (the information given for the period between 1928 and 1925 is the most conflictive). Cartridges made by Zbrojovka Brno a. s., závod III, Vsetín (today’s ZVI, Inc.) and post-1995 PS are not included.

I’m sure that there must be lots of mistakes and omissions but let’s hope these can be corrected.

G. Roth, Pressburg

Bratislavská J. Roth a. s., Bratislava (Czech designation)
Bratislavaer G. Roth A.-G., Bratislava (German designation)
Bratislavai Roth Gy. R.-T. (Hungarian language designation)

January 1, 1918
Pressburger J. Roth A-G.
Also listed as “Preßburger G. Roth AG, Munitions-, Metallwaren-und Maschinenfabrik, Grau- und Metallgießerei”.

October 28, 1918
Sometime after this date, in which the first “Československá republika” was proclaimed, the company name was registered as “Bratislavská J. Roth a. s.”. The name of “Bratislava” was officially adopted on March 27, 1919, meaning that it could have happened after this date.

April, 1923
The first known dated “JR” headstamp is 19 / JR / 23 / IV / (8x50R).

July 29, 1925,
First use of trademark “Z inside rifled barrel bore” registered by Československá Zbrojovka a. s., Brno.

March 15, 1928
Sometime after this date Zbrojovka Brno bought most of the shares and changed the Roth company designation to “Československé municní a kovodelné závody a. s., Bratislava”. They also decided to establish a second new factory at Považská Bystrica.

November, 1928
The last known dated “JR” headstamp is 19 / JR / 28 / XI / (7,9x57).

June, 1929
The first known dated “M” headstamp is 19 / M / 29 / V / (7,9x57).

June 24, 1929
Excavations are made for the foundations of the new factories.

July 7, 1929
Construction of both factories starts at Považská Bystrica (ex-Bratislava and new one). Ceremony of foundation stone is made.

October 25, 1929
G. Roth A.-G. of Vienna decided to dissolve the company, including the one at Bratislava.

January 10, 1930
G. Roth A.-G. of Vienna in liquidation.

All shares of “Československé municní a kovodelné závody a. s., Bratislava” now belongs to Zbrojovka Brno a. s.

June 30, 1934
The Bratislava production was moved to Považská Bystrica and its designation is changed to “Československé muničné a kovodelné závody, a.s., Považská Bystrica (bývalá Patrónka Bratislava)”. The second newly constructed factory is designated “Československé muničné a kovodelné závody, a.s., závod II, Považská Bystrica”.

The first known dated “Z” headstamp is 19 Z 34 7.65S (7.65x54).

January 1, 1935
Both factories fusioned under the name of “Zbrojovka Brno, a. s., závod II, Považská Bystrica”.

June 19, 1935
Trademark “Z inside rifled barrel bore” registered by “Zbrojovka Brno, a. s.”.

December, 1935
The last known dated “M” headstamp is 19 / M / 35 / XII / (7,9x57).

German designation for the Považská Bystrica ammunition factory listed as “Waffenwerke Brünn A.G., Werk Povazska Bystrica”.

August 5, 1940
Shares of Zbrojovka Brno a. s. are bought by Reichswerke A.-G. für Erzbergbau und Eisenhütten “Hermann Göring”, Berlin.

The first and last “P14A” headstamps reported are P14A * 5 40 to P14A * 55 40 (9x19) and P 14A XIg1 1 40 to P 14A IXg1 19 40 (7,92x57).

The first known “dou.” headstamps are dou. IXg1 1 41 (7,9x57) and dou. 41 2 * (9x19).

Zbrojovka Brno a. s. is incorporated to Waffen-Union Škoda-Brünn G.m.b.H., Berlin.

The first known steel cased dated “Z” headstamp is Z St 1 42 (7.9x57 and 9x19).

The last known steel cased dated “Z” headstamp is Z St 7 43 (7.9x57).

March, 1944
The last known brass cased dated “Z” headstamp is 19 / Z / 44 / III / (7,9x57).

The last known “dou.” headstamps are dou. -St+ 7 45 (9x19), dou.-St 9 45 (7,9x33) and dou.-St+ 14 45 (7,9x57).

July 23, 1945
Trademark “Z inside rifled barrel bore” registered by “Zbrojovka Brno, a. s.”. Use in ammunition is mentioned.

October 27, 1945
Zbrojovka Brno, a. s. is nationalized and became “Zbrojovka Brno, národní podnik”.

March 7, 1946 (with retroactive effect from January 1st)
The ammunition plant at Považská Bystrica became independent from Brno and renamed “Považské Strojárne, národný podnik, Považská Bystrica”.

September, 1946
The first known dated “PS” headstamp is 19 PS 46 IX (7.9x57). There is an illustration of 19 PS 46 II but I’m not sure if it does exist.

April 19, 1947
Trademark “Z inside rifled barrel bore” registered by “Zbrojovka Brno, národní podnik”. Use in ammunition is mentioned.

April 20, 1950
The “KOVO” trademark is noted as first used. This was the company offering products by “PS”. Full designation was: KOVO, akciová společnost pro obchod s kovodělnými a strojírenskými výrobky a surovinami, Václavské náměstí 56, Praha 2 (KOVO Limited, metal and engineering products and raw materials trading company, Wenceslas Square 56, Prague 2).
There is catalog that shows year 1949 on the cover but this is a reproduction and this date would be wrong as the company name didn’t yet existed.

The last known dated “PS” headstamp is PS / * / 7,65 / 52 / (7.65 mm Br.).

September 8, 1952
KOVO’s name changes to “KOVO akciová společnost pro dovoz a vývoz výrobků přesného strojírenství, Tř. Dukelských hrdinů 47, Praha 7” (KOVO Limited, import and export of precision engineering trading company, Tr. Dukelskych hrdinů 47, Prague 7).

The Company name is noted in boxes illustrations as “Považské Strojárne, národný podnik” and “Považská Bystrica” is not shown anymore (Suplement to the Catalogue of Pistol, Revolver and Rifle Ammunition available in 1952-53).

Production ends.

Edit: Z St 1 42 headstamp in 9x19 added.

Fede, as much light your list is sheding now I still have no clear idea of why PS and Z were used.

Who’s production ended in 1954?

For the founding date of G.Roth I have 1867 under the name “G. Roth Metallwaren-, Patronenhülsen-, Zündhütchen-, Bleigeschosse- und Munition-Fabriken Wien und Pressburg”.

I am a pain no?

Alex, my friend, you are not a pain! If you have doubts you should not take anything I said for granted. As I said before, this is far from being rock solid and I can’t verify if certain dates of this timeline are correct because of lack of documentation.

Regarding the first date, most sources mentions it was in 1870, while some others say “after 1867”. Maybe this was interpreted as “in 1867”?

In 1954 the production at Považské Strojárne comes to an end and the last known dated headstamp is aym 54 (7.62x45). V. Badalik mentions: “Blueprints and semi-finished cases were all transported to Vlašim, where they were used for a number of years”. To avoid more confusion I should have mention that I haven’t included any PS production after that date, including the 7.62x39 made in 1966-69 (aym 66 to aym 69).

Also, I guess that adding information on the PS 1949-52 headstamps using “symbols” (X, ♂ and “cross ended with circles”) adds nothing to this subject.

Edit: I replaced “aym 67” for “aym 66”.

Now I am confused, about PS production coming to “an end” in 1954 with “aym 54” as the last known date. I have “aym” Makarov rounds dated in this century! I don’t quite understand the later comment in the same paragraph about not including the 7.62 x 39, but I guess it alludes to the fact that PS made ammo later than 1954. The two parts of the same paragraph seem self-cancelling to me, but then no one ever said I had a brain in my head.