Chinese made 7.63x25 Mauser or 7.62 Tokarev?

Hello - I have a 7.63x25 Mauser round that I’m unsure of. Is it Chinese (Heilongjiang North Tool Factory)?:


If so, what do the 53 and 10 indicate? Thanks, Darren

Pretty sure they are month and year.

It’s a 7.62x25 Tokarev round.

Thanks Sheng - all other details correct?


I purposely did not mention the round as a 7.62 Tokarev, as I have never seen anything to show that Chinese production of the 7.62/7.63 x 25 was modified or designated as Mauser or Tokarev. Is there any definitive and differentiated Chinese Tokarev or Mauser production?

As I know,PRC haven’t producted 763Mauser round. The first 7.62x25 round is called “type 50 SMG cartridge” which used for modelled PPSh-41 SMG so it should be Tokarev round. The same reason,during Republic China there isn’t any weapon use Tokarev round in China, So such cartridge produced during Republic China should be called 7.63 Mauser

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Excellent answer, and all true, but I would like two clarifications.

  1. Was any ammunition produced in the PRC for use in the many 7.63 Mauser pistols produced in the ROC?
  2. What differences are there, if any, between ROC Mauser ammunition and PRC Tokarev cartridges?

Generally speaking, the difference between 7.63 Mauser and 7.62 Tokarev is the bullet diameter. The Mauser has the “western” bullet diameter of 7.8 mm and the Tokarev (as it is called in the West) has the “Russian/Soviet” diameter of 7.9 mm. Communist Chinese ammunition documentation, which by the way calls the “Tokarev” cartridge model 51, not model 50, confirms the use of the larger diameter bullet.

But this distinction is moot, because in practice 7.62 Mauser and 7.62 Tokarev are fully interchangeable. Contrary to widespread opinion, they are also loaded to the same ballistic level of 410-420 m/s from a pistol. (Czechoslovak cartridges are an exception.)

I share Sheng’s view that Republic of China production should qualify as 7.63 Mauser and Peoples Republic of China production as 7.62 Tokarev. But we should keep in mind that only very close measurements can tell one from the other.

Thanks for the thoughts, but I don’t believe that is true at all. Over the years, I have measured hundreds of Mauser and Tokarev bullets, and the range of differences has been the same as you would find between any number of different manufacturers. That is why I asked Sheng for any documented differences.

I can’t say any exact difference between two cartridge.But I know many police load their 7.63 mauser pistol with PRC made 762 tokarev round and use them normally

Here is a type 50 SMG cartridge box labelIMG_20190624_122215


Thank you all for your comments. Interesting stuff. I managed to borrowed a copy of Ken Elks book on Chinese ammunition, which confirms Sheng’s comments on ROC making 7.63mm Mauser and the POC making 7.62mm Tokarev.

Elks refers to the cartridge itself as being designated Type 51 but I wonder if the following could account for the differing opinions voiced here: “Although they were originally for the Type 51 Tokarev pistol, the main use by the Chinese was in the many Russian submachine-guns in that calibre and also the Type 50 SMG, both of which were important weapons employed by Chinese forces during the Korean war.”

I’ve edited the thread title to better reflect the discussion.

Sheng beat me to it with his picture of a great PRC 7.62 x 25 Type 50 box. I have a different label on a 50-round box designated “Type 50” with the headstamp of the contents being
" 5 51 D22" the earliest PRC round of this caliber I have.

The label is less descriptive than that of the box pictured by Sheng, meaning it has fewer characters. I would like to post a scan of it, but the label is printed in red, and is quite faded. My first attempts at scanning it did not produce a usable picture.

It is not unknown for cartridges or other ordnance to change designation. I had an opportunity years ago to compare my PRC Type 54 Pistol to one, another Tokarev, designated Type 51, which is where that cartridge Designation comes from. It was not my pistol and I was not allowed to disassemble it, but externally, I could find no difference between the two pistols, other than markings, that would normally justify a change of model designation. I am not saying there isn’t any internally, but there was nothing I could see from the assembled pistols.

It may be that there is some loading difference between the Type 50 cartridge made for the PRC copy of the Shpagin PPSh 41 SMG, Type 50, and those designated Type 51 for the Tokarev-type pistol made in China. Just conjecture, as I have no documentation for what may or may not be physical differences in the two-designated cartridges.

I totally agree with Sheng’s way of differentiating between PRC-made 7.62 Tokarev ammunition and 7.63 mm Mauser ammunition made in the years of the Republic of China.

Interesting thread. I had not thought about the “Type 50” ammunition in some years.

John Moss

O.K. Here is the box label. The color red is not true to the real tone, but this was necessary to make it as legible as I could.

John M.


Great picture!It had solved a mystery which troubles me for a long time——the exact meaning of “D22”. It was called “No.22 Ordnance factory of Northeast department of industry”

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Sheng - Thank you for that information! PRC factories are primarily known to American and European collectors simply by the headstamp number, such as “Arsenal 11,” or “Arsenal 31.” Commercially, we know them mostly by the exporting entities, not the actual factories that made them, with NORINCO being the best example of that.

John Moss

Here is an image of a “121” box marked “762”:

During the period of the Republic of China, a small amount of 7.63 Mauser was produced. After the founding of the people’s Republic of China, only 7.62 Tokarev was produced. The figure shows the 7.63 Mauser produced in Shandong Province in November of the Republic of China


Thank you. But a question still remains. Other than headstamps and Type designation, is there any actual difference between Chinese 7.63 Mauser and 7.62 Tokarev cartridges?