Current Geco 9mm Luger boxes from different countries

Below are images of current Geco boxes from Switzerland, Germany and Hungary (2 boxes) shown top to bottom. Note that all the boxes have slight differences. Immediately below are the headstamps from the four boxes (Right to Left) they are in the same order as the boxes top t bottom, Switzerland, Germany, Hungary. Note that all four headstamps are different. All the loads are 124gr except for the German which is 115gr.


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Lew, can you tell us the lot numbers as shown on the end flaps?

Hungarian with tombac case bullet banner: 44 UK 162 stamped inside end flap.

Hungarian: 41 J J128 impressed on end flap.

Swiss: 64TJ impressed on end flap.

German: 66PK impressed on end flap.

I have two other similar boxes.

Hungarian with green non-toxic banner: 41 R 6 059 stamped inside end flap.

Hungarian with IPSC logo: 61 C H042 impressed in end flap.

Hope this helps.

Can you read these codes??


Some time ago I explained it on this forum, but have to admit I cannot find that message myself.
The format is basically: ddmy, for xample 44UK

To get the day, subtract 40. Therefore 44 represents the 4th day of the month.

The letter code for the month starts with K for January through V for December: U is November.

The last letter represents the year. It started with A for 1956 reaching Z in 1980 and restarted with A in 1981 and again in 2006. To avoid I/J errors, only one of these letters is used. In the example K could be 1965, 1990 or 2015. Obvioulsy 2015 is correct.

44UK should be 04 Nov 2015.

I assume Thun used the same code: 41UB was definitely Thun lot 020-07 T (from 2007).

I had thought that in the Hungarian codes the first 4 characters have the same meaning. But 41JJ in your first example confuses me, because “J” (or “I”) does not exist among the month-letters K through V. One could speculate they have switched the month letter to the NATO/US system A through M. Your last example 61CH supports this.

Could your non-tox example 41R6 be really 41RG ?

Jpeelen, I think I missed your Geco box date codes when they were posted originally. I am very interested in these codes. Thank you very much for posting them.

Of course 41R6 IS 41RG. My mistake.

I have quite a few of the blue Geco boxes from the 50s which I got from a German friend. The codes are 7Gs (ctgs dated 58), 5Tc, 7Es (ctgs dated 55), 7Ts, H9 (ctgs dated 55), 7Ns (ctgs dated 55), s.s.G.S (black plastic blanks), S7 (black plastic blanks).

These codes do not seem to match the one you describe above. I recently sent the ECRA some work on the Geco RWS codes on pistol ammo from 1928-1945 that I have been trying to understand along with my best guess, based on a relatively few boxes, but some with dated ammunition, and it seems to be closer to your code, except mostly just two letters like KX, NC, PK, UX, VO, XT. This code seems to be different from either the one you list above and from the one from my 1950s Geco boxes.

When do you think these codes likely changed, for example, when was the one you described adopted?

Do you have any insight into the earlier codes???

Many thanks for the great insight ou provide.



we have two sources as part of (postwar) Dynamit Nobel here: the RWS factory at Stadeln (now RUAG) and the Geco factory at Karlsruhe-Durlach (actually Wolfartsweier) which was closed down in the seventies. Only its shot tower still stands, used for meteorological observations.

RWS has been using the code I described for centerfire cartridges since 1956. Basically, it was already used before the war (A = 1931) with a different sequence: year came first, month last. Modern 44UK would have had the format K44U up to 1945 (I do not know when they actually stopped civilian production during WW2).

Geco used a different system which I cannot read. The people at Stadeln told me -truthful or not- they could not read it either. Unless some additional information is found in the RWS archive at Stadeln, we cannot interpret Geco “Fertigungszeichen”.

You will find “Geco” boxes with an RWS type Fertigungszeichen and/or Troisdorf (instead of Karlruhe-Durlach) given as location. I assume these are from Stadeln after production in the Geco factory stopped. Troisdorf (near Cologne) was the original location of RWS and for a long time the main location of Dynamit Nobel.

The 9 x 21 comes in the same boxes (only the name is different), but also in a box where a shooter is pictured on the box.
Maybe the 9 Luger is available with that box too

Yes, for a time an IPSC shooter was shown on the red boxes for 9 mm Parabellum (8 g FMJ).
I have one “Made in Switzerland” with CIP from Ulm proof house and impressed lot number 52MY.

These are my 9 x 21 Geco box variations. Identical boxes for the 9 mm Para exist (note that my “pistol” box has a “minor factor” added above the IPSC logo)


Unrelated aside, but interesting to me.

I’m wondering if anyone has first runs of this product box, and if the graphics differ. The pistol shown (Glock-ish) is just far enough off to not represent any real Glock product (different slide serrations, rounded triggerguard, nonexistent config of Gen2 grip with Gen3+ rail, etc).

Curious as to whether the originals showed an actual Glock and had to be revamped, or whether Geco was smart and put an edited pistol graphic on there to begin with. Reminiscent to me of the slight differences between the ‘new’ GSG .22LR Mp5-clone and the original firearms due to Heckler and Koch’s protest.

Keeping it ammo-related, have their ever been any actual likeness/rights/TM/copyright disputes between ammunition manufacturers regarding appearance of ammunition?

This came up recently when an associate brought up how odd it was to have a Makarov pistol shown in ads for firearms and legal training; I submitted that it being an older OCONUS military pistol kept it as far away from litigation as possible, probably freeware images.

European copyright law has gone completely bonkers so I wouldn’t be surprised if the pistol is an artistic licence Glock-alike to keep infringement of copyright problems at bay.

It’s gone so far that there are buildings it’s impossible to use in any ‘commercial’ way, possibly even including personal websites, because the architect has copyright of the design shape of the building. I gave up taking photographs in France after I had to scrap all the interior shots of a Parisian art gallery because the designer of some tables seen in most of the pictures demanded money, with threats of court action, if I didn’t pay him for ‘incorporating’ his design in my pictures.

The most obvious thing to copyright in the ammunition field would be some of the extreme expansion bullets, does anyone know if this has been tried ?


Here are two headstamps collected this week from a privately owned indoor shooting range here in Romania.
The first is exactly like the one from Germany posted above, the second is similar to the last one, but with two * signs
Boxes looked similar to the ones above, but I dont have an image of them. Bullets for the second headstamp were 124 grain FMJ.

When the headstamp on the right of your post above (Geco * 9mmLuger*) first showed up I was told that it was sold unloaded, to be loaded by the shooter. I don’t know if this was true then (about 1996) or if it is still true. The only box with these headstamps is a TopStart box marked Dynimite Nobel for ALLJADG that I acquired in 2003.


Not the case here, this was factory new ammo in the box. The range prohibits use of home made cartridges.

Lew - I have the Top Star box with cartriidges headstamped * Geco * 9 mm Luger, but it is not the only box in which cartridges of this headstamp were packaged.

I have two variations of a Geco box style, differeing primarily in the back label, that contains these rounds as well. Without a scanner, now kaput, I cannot provide good pictures of them. However, the box is basically black, with one corner, in a diangonal design widening from a point in the upper right corner down to a widty of about 1/3 of the box at the botto. The blue diagnonal contains a Black and White rendition of the Geco trademark. The black portion has “9mm LUGER” in large blue print, and is also covered with a series of 12 broken lines of gold “dashes” of various lengths. They are in the 8.0 Gram (124 Grain) FMJ loading. I actually have never seen a box or other packaging for NUPE or NPE cases with this headstamp. That is not to say it doesn’t exist. I simply don’t know.

There is also a rendition of the Geco headstamp with a single star at the three o’clock position on the cartridge head, but the “look” of the head is quite different, since it has a nickel primer instead of the brass primer that always seems to in the cases with two “stars” and a red primer seal. Further, there is a single-star RWS headstamp quite similar to the Geco with single star. Neither the Geco nor the RWS are in boxes of the sxame art work as those with two stars.

Sorry, I wasn’t clear in my previous post. The TopStar box of the Geco * 9mmLuger * hst rounds from 2003 is clearly loaded ammo by DAG.

When I first received this headstamp, it was from a shooter and loader who who told me it was only offered as cases for loading. Of course he could have been wrong, but it was some years before I found loaded rounds that clearly came from DAG. Since then I have seen it in special loads from a number of individuals or small companies who manufacture their “special loads”. John, like you I have never seen a box of cases, but also have never asked.


Lew - it was really the comment that the Top Star box was the only box with these headstamps that I was answering.

I noticed a Geco 9mm headstamp that I don’t remember seeing in the U.S. before, with an R on the headstamp at the below link, The image is grainy even after zooming in, but legible.


Also recently noticed this line of self defense ammo from Geco called ”Red Zone”. The projectiles in Red Zone are something like a Hornady XTP, or Sierra’s new JHP bullets going into Sig V-Crown ammo.

Found some other box artwork for this type, showing an expanded projectile -


Here are some images of these two recent Geco 9mm boxes. The Red Zone package is interesting in that it has a short styrofoam tray with the cartridges mounted at an angle. The jacketed hollow point resembles the Sig V-Crown projectile made by Sierra, but these Red Zone bullets have a deeper cavity.

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