Chinese cannon ammo


I have recently updated my Ammunition Photo Gallery (mostly covering anti-tank rifle and HMG up to 57mm automatic cannon) by posting several new photos including recently acquired cartridges:

Two of them are a bit different: replicas of the 25x183B (PG87) and 37x240 (Type 76) rounds which are unique to China. I have only ever seen photographs and catalogue entries concerning these rounds and there seems little chance of them becoming available to collectors in the foreseeable future, so I amassed all the info on them I could (with special thanks to Dave Elfeldt for producing some technical drawings) and had a friend make up replicas, machined from solid aluminium, for display and photographic purposes.

The 25x183B, which is used only in army AA guns, bears a remarkable resemblance to the 23x152B only much bigger. The 37x240, used only in naval guns, is very similar to the 35x228 Oerlikon (in fact one of the Chinese naval guns advertised by NORINCO is available in either 37x240 or 35x228).

Here are two of the pictures from my gallery:


Here are my Chinese 25s. Hard to get a shell. They look like a giant ZU23.


Tnaks for the images. Could you tell us the exact caselength?


i am mystified by the apparent discrepancy between case lengths of the 25x184 and 25x183B where the 183B seems much longer, is there a logical explanation?



Those came out real nice! My compliments to your machinist!


I don’t know the actual dimensions of Tony’s reproduction but I think this is the drawing I generated for him last year.

Scaled and interpolated as best as possible from the information at hand…



on the first picture the 25x183B is more long that the 25x184 ?
the neck on 25x183 look shorter on these pictures


Thanks for your comments, gentlemen. The discrepancy in case length is due to the Oerlikon KBB round. The HE/APDS loadings normally measure 184mm I believe, but the drill rounds have shorter cases - only around 172mm in the one in the photo.

The figure of 183mm for the Chinese round was based on a side-on drawing in a catalogue I have which also gave the total round length, enabling the case length and other dimensions to be scaled by Dave. It is of course possible that the drawing is inaccurate, but it was all I had to go on apart from some photographs.


thank for your explications
i have a pictures where can see a tp load and he had same case dimensions as drill cartridge


I have had some clarification about the case length of the KBB round: 184mm is for the APDS round, 173mm for the others.

This raises the interesting question of the correct metric designation for the cartridge. The only gun to see service which fires this round is the Oerlikon KBB and as far as I’m aware this only achieved one sale - to the Turkish Navy. They bought 24 examples of the Oerlikon Sea Zenith CIWS, each of which mounts four KBB guns. Since all other Western gun CIWS (Phalanx, Goalkeeper, Meroka) use APDS ammo in the anti-missile role, I presume that Sea Zenith probably does also. If this is correct, then APDS is the only “warshot” (although HE was also advertised as available). On that basis, I think that 25x184 is the appropriate designation for the cartridge. Others may differ…

Incidentally, this ammunition is no longer manufactured. Presumably Turkey has enough for their needs in stock.


Here are my 37s.


Very nice! Those are the first I’ve heard of which have escaped China.


there are a hope that can find 25x184 and 37x240 even is hard to find them
beutifull 37mm


I will have some for sale or trade later on.


23mm Chinese aircraft shells. Which gun makes that slash mark on the primer ?


Most likely made by gatling type guns like the GSh-6-23. Hard to say what the Chinese have in detail or what they got developed themselfes.


Good afternoon,

this primer slash mark was made by the Soviet GSh-23 aircraft gun, which is chambered in the shown 23x115 caliber.
The Chinese designation of the GSh-23 is “Type 23-3”.
This double barrel gun operating according to the “Gast” principle (3200-3400 rds/min) is quite hard on the ammunition. Apparently, the firing pin is still somewhat exposed when a new round ist supplied into the vertical holding paws on the breechblock face, thus ejecting the spent case downwards.

Other Chinese 23mm aircraft guns in this caliber are the “Type 23-1” (copy of the Soviet NR-23) and the “Type 23-2” (copy of the Soviet AM-23).
The brass 23mm cases shown in your picture (PLEASE DO POST MORE PICTURES OF CHINESE CANNON AMMO - THANKS!) were fired by the Type 23-1.

Hope this was of help!
Chris Koll


The Soviet GSh-6-23 leaves a perfectly round firing pin indentation with sharp edges in the primer. Cases fired by that Gatling gun and can easily be identified by two parallel scratches on the side of the case body. These scratches are the result of the case extraction process, which is carried out by a pair of rotating claws camming the fired case out of the longitudinal loading tray in the rotor.

Best regards!
Chris Koll


i hope there i’m have the right to post alink showing these beautiful 23x115 chinese lacquered green steel cases


i hope there i’m have the right to post alink showing these beautiful 23x115 chinese lacquered green steel cases[/quote]

The photos can only be seen as thumbnails unless one registers on the blog. Can you post them here larger format ?

Some don’t have time for other ammo blogs.


Can anyone agree on the firing pin marks ?