Geco Pre-45 9mm Box Information

I am trying to sort out the dates for the various box styles used by Geco on 9mm P08 “commercial” ammunition before and during WWII. There are three basic styles I am working on though I know there were other styles used, particularly a Blue box with a cartridge drawing on the front and others that I have only hints of because they are under other labels.

The three I am working on now are shown below. Most of these have a code stamped on the back or inside the end flap. Usually it is a two letter code but sometimes it includes both letters (sometimes upper and lower case mixed) and numbers.

Most of my boxes are empty so I am also very interested in the headstamps inside these boxes. Although all look commercial, some have military headstamps. One in my collection has brass case rounds headstamped dnh * 2 (&3) dated both 41 and 42. These military headstamps are a great help in dating the boxes.


This is, I believe the earliest style box. The end is marked Sinoxid so it dates no earlier than 1928. It is a 2-piece box and the box itself is covered with a very fine crosshatch design which looks almost like cloth. This style box dates from the 1920s or early 1930s I believe. The cartridges in the box are headstamped “Geco. 9m/m”


This is the most common box and I have examples with a significant range of date codes (which I don’t yet understand). This is the box mentioned above with the dnh 1941 & 1942 military headstamps. Both the cms and primer are a dark red lacquer. My guess is this box dates back to the early 1930s but apparently was still being used in 1942. The blue box with the cartridge drawing mentioned above were used in the late 1930s so the 1940s use of this box is strange.

I know “oeldicht” means “oil tight” or oil proof. I assume this means all these cartridges had lacquered case mouth seals and primers. Does anyone know when this term was first used on Geco/RWS cartridges??


This is a strange box label, and the ones I know of are all empty so I have no idea what the headstamp is. One of these boxes is stamped “St” on the back so apparently contained steel case ammunition, possibly the “Geco 9mm” or “Geco 9m/m” copper-washed Steel case rounds. The steel case would date this box from the very late 1930s or later. Another possibility is that this is actually a product of RWS when they began producing 9mm P08 again before WWII.

[b]Again, any information on these boxes, the codes inside the endflap or on the back, and/or the cartridges in them would be greatly appreciated.

Similar boxes in other pistol calibers would also help my research.[/b]

Many thanks for your assistance.


Lew, the earliest reference that I’m aware is the 1934 edition of “Schieß-technisches Handbuch für Jäger und Schützen” published by RWS (the foreword is also signed “Nürnberg, March 1934”). It is not mentioned in the Geco and RWS catalogs of 1934, so I assume that these editions were prepared late in 1933 when this oil-proof improvement was not yet in use (both include a sheet with discounts effective from January 1, 1934).



A correction to my original post. I have now documented three of the last box in my post. All three have RWS date codes varying from Nov 1942 to May 1944. This box has nothing to do with Geco.

If anyone has one of these boxes, I’d be extremely interested in the details, particularly the ammunition in the box.


I am still looking for information on the boxes listed above. both the headstamps in these boxes and the date codes on the back of the boxes or inside the end flaps.

I’d also like information on the two boxes below. Although one is Geco and the other RWS, it is clear that both were products of Geco.

The blue box is known with a date, not date code of January 1937, and it was in use as late as 1944. A box of this style with CMC headstamped ammunition has an Romanian overlabel that is dated 1944.

The red RWS boxes are documented with Geco style two letter codes with year dates of R and T.

More examples of Geco made boxes may allow us to identify the date codes.

All assistance is appreciated. Please check your boxes and let me know.


Geco-RWS Boxes-sml_zps90vh2wtk.jpg~original

Hi Lew,

Here are 2 boxes from my collection. The 7,65 para box is interesting, as it is a 9mm box with a 7,65 label taped over it. Stamp inside the lid is ‘SS’. Coincidence I’d think :)

The box is shown next to a 1957 early post-war box. Same style, but with a NATO NSN number.

Hope this helps

This illustration is from the 1932 GeCo catalog:


And a well worn version of the RWS-brand 7,65 box.

Vlim, please, can you confirm the date of this catalog or post a picture of the cover?


The 7.65 Para box with the SS code would be 1939 production and the RWS 7.65B box was produced by Geco in 1935. I haven’t fugured out the month codes yet, but these two boxes help.

The postwar box with the H6c code is still a mistery to me. I have similar codes, h9, 7Es,5Tc, O6c & 7Ns (55 dated cases), 7Gs & 7Rs (58 dated cases), S7 on red plastic blanks-brass base and s.s.G.S. on black plastic blanks-brass base. A box of black plastic blanks with aluminum base has no code. The code on your box is in a slightly different format. I don’t know what to make of these.


Here are some boxes from RWS pre WW2.

In the gray box, the cartridges has the * G.S.F. * 6, 35 head stamp.