Japanese Stripper


#1

I just acquired this Jap stripper clip. The clip and cartridges are in mint condition. The box is in excellant condition except that 1/2 of the label that seals the box is missing (the part that is torn off to open the box, I assume.) On another thread this was called:

Type 92 MG in 7.7 x 58SRmm calibre, Hotchkiss design.

Is that the correct designation? Is it a clip or a stripper or a ?

1/2 of the lettering is still on the seal and there is also an inscription on the side of the box. If I could photograph these, is there someone who could tell me what they say? Or maybe someone already knows what they say?

I don’t have a Jap MG to shoot these in and I don’t really collect Jap stuff so is this worth anything or should I just toss it?

Ray


#2

Hi,

I am not an expert on Japanese ammunition but I do have Elk’s new book! Kind of like spending the night at a Holiday Inn.

First a photo of the Type 92 heavy machine gun. I think they called these woodpeckers because of the sound they made when fired. You can see where the stripper/magazine fit into the side of the MG.

The cartridges in question are identified by Elk’s as 7.7mm Type 92 Ammunition (for the Type 92 Heavy Machine Gun, 1932, page 56.

The Type 92 derives its name from the Japanese era in which it was introduced. Thus Japanese Era date Showa 7 is Koki year 92 which is actually circa 1932. The 7.7mm Type 92 is a semi-rimmed cartridge and uses the same case as the 7.7mm Type 89. These cartridges used a color coding system of marking the case mouth to designate the functional purpose of the round such as ball, AP, incendiary, tracer, or explosive.

On the Type 92 ball, AP, and incendiary ammunition the fact that it is a Type 92 can be discerned by the primers being completely covered with a green or blue-green lacquer. I have several of these blue-green primed rounds in my own collection and did not know what I was looking at until I got Elk’s book. In fact, 99% of the Japanese ammunition in my collection was misidentified, when I procured a small collection.

According to Elk’s this primer marking system occurred sometime after 1938 but before 1941. All Type 92 ammunition after 1941 is so marked with a blue-green primer. This marking was provided so that the 7.7mm Type 92 SR ammunition would be recognized at a glance and not confused with the rimless 7.7mm Type 99 ammunition. The 7.7mm SR Type 92 would jam the mechanism of the Type 99 machine gun, but the 7.7 rimless could be fired satisfactorily in the Type 92 machine gun. Type 92 ammunition either ceased or was phased out after 1943.

The rest of your questions I cannot answer but I hope this helped.

Regards,

Heavyiron


#3

Heavy

Thanks for all that good info.

I think I have some single rounds with the green primer but the cartridges in this clip have no primer color at all. Not even a trace. They do have a cannelured bullet with a red or pink seal (Ball??) at the bullet/case junction. Everything is non-magnetic. Semi-rimmed.

Maybe these cartridges are not correct for the clip? They sure do look like they’ve been there since before I was born, however.

PS - Could the lack of the green primer mean that the cartridges are pre-type 97 which would date them before 1937???

Ray


#4

The majority of the “new” conditione Boxed Type 92 ammo in the US and elsewhere is out of the PR China,in the early 1980s, which at the end of WW II had captured millions of rounds of this MMG ammo, along with the guns…they were to the Japanese what the Vickers was to the British Commonwealth.

I have several sealed packets, such as the photo, and they are all dated pre-1941 ( 1938,39 and 40).

Elk’s now revised Book on Japanese ammunition should clear up the primer colour problem.
AFAIK, Bullet type was indicated by Mouth ring colour alone, the primer seal colour was to distinguish the Type 92 from the Infantry Rifle and LMG Type 99, at sight.
Type 92 ammo was supplied in Strips for the Nambu Woodpecker (NOT Strippers, which is an American Rifle term), but also in 5 round Stripper Clips (or Chargers) for the use in the Binary Type 89 Flexible Aircraft Gun, which used a Chain-fed Stripper clip holder to present the ammo to a Type 11 “ratchet feed” (the T89 Gun design was simply a Beefed-up Infantry Type 11 Nambu with calibre and layout changes…the Single gun used a Vickers Pan type feed, copied from the GO , whilst the Binary Guns (Mirror image guns) used two Snail (or Banjo) type magazines with a continuous chain feed of entire strippers (See Chinn’s “The Machine Gun” for mechanism designs).
Boxes of either clipped or loose 7,7mm Type 89/92 ammo was actually stamped for which guns it was suited to (ie, Flexible gun Aircraft T89 / Land Gun (Infantry)T92).
As mentioned, the primer ring colour came in after the T99 rifle(rimless) ammo was in general service (about 1941) to avoid confusion.

In 1941, they also introduced an improved Woodpecker, chambered for Rimless ammo only…Ju Ki Type 1. Few were made, as it was found that T99 ammo fed, fired and extracted readily in the T92 gun, even though it was not as powerfull as the T92 Loading.

My experience with the Type 3/92 Nambu and T89 Single Air-Flex.guns comes from having a functioning Type3/Modelo 1920 export model set up for Blank-fire in 7,62 Nato (it Loves Radway Green L10 A1 Blanks), and getting the T89 to fire with Blanks which are a bit shorter than the desireable for the Pan Feed (in 7,7 chambering).

Regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.
(Australia)


#5

As far as I know this hasn’t been mentioned here or elsewhere, but it’s my impression that the 7.7m/m semi-rimmed ammo in those strip clips/chargers/ladestreifen without the little bumps on the sides could also be used to load the regular pan-type type 89 flexible MG. It’s known that there was a magazine loader for the types 96 and 99 LMG that used the regular Arisaka clip and my thought is that there was a similar one for the pan-fed type 89 ACMG also. Does Doc or anyone else have a thought? JG


#6

I bought a couple of these in a mint condition for $20 each in Syracuse last year, and several dealers seemed to have reasonable quantities. I thought it was a good deal.


#7

a. Can someone provide a summary list of the meaning of the color codes for the rimless and semi-rimmed 7.7mm
b. Would the same meaning apply to the 6.5mm Jap as well?

Need ID for the colors of the neck seal and the primer seal.

Thanks!


#8

You are right, pink mouth seal is ball.

I have an identical 7.7 Type 92 ball round with pink mouth seal and no primer annulus. The primer on mine is very poorly fitted (creaed slightly at one edge), and the primer ring crimp is vastly off centre. This would have made me think late war production. I also have a 7.7 Rimless paper bulleted blank with a dark purple annulus completely covering the primer cap itself with none at all on the case head.


#9

[quote=“Ray Meketa”]Heavy

I think I have some single rounds with the green primer but the cartridges in this clip have no primer color at all. Not even a trace. They do have a cannelured bullet with a red or pink seal (Ball??) at the bullet/case junction. Everything is non-magnetic. Semi-rimmed.

PS - Could the lack of the green primer mean that the cartridges are pre-type 97 which would date them before 1937???

Ray[/quote]

Hi Ray,

I think I can respond to your questions as above.

For the Type 92 ammunition, Japan used a color code system by marking the case mouth with a colored lacquer sealant. Here is the list:

Pink = Ball
Black = AP
Green = Tracer
None = Blank
None = High Pressure test round
None = Armorers dummy
Two knurled rings around case = dummy

Therefore, your rounds would be ball ammunition.

My guess is your rounds don’t have headstamps which would be typical of Japanese Army issue ammunition and there is probably a ring crimp to hold the primer in place. If these cartridges do not have the blue-green lacquered primers, I would guess that these are pre-1938 cartridges just as you suggested.

IMHO, the Japanese ammunition is going the same way as the Japanese weapons have, and that is, they are becoming more valuable to collectors as time passes. You might want to hang on to these.

Regards,

Heavyiron

P.S. Here is an update. Check out this auction for 7.7mm SR ammunition.

auctionarms.com/search/displ … um=8097516


#10

[quote=“John S.”]a. Can someone provide a summary list of the meaning of the color codes for the rimless and semi-rimmed 7.7mm
b. Would the same meaning apply to the 6.5mm Jap as well?

Need ID for the colors of the neck seal and the primer seal.

Thanks![/quote]

John

One of the back issues of the JOURNAL has a complete list. I don’t remember the exact issue but it should be easy to find with Chris’ handy dandy Index and your CD.

As I remember it listed all color codes for all of the Jap ammo.

Ray


#11

Japanese stripper CLIPS.

Y’all got me excited for a minute…Didn’t think it was that kind of site…


#12

Thanks to everyone who replied. I know more about Jap ammo than I ever wanted to.

What impressed me was the condition of the cartridges. They are Mint. Much better than the ones on the Auction.

Yeah Cyber, I figured that thread title would snare at least one dirty old man. :) :)

Ray


#13

There have been noted(both on this (old) Board , and on Gunboards, packets of both Loose 7,7SR cartridges and Clipped (5 rounds) 7,7SR cartidges. The Boxes refer to “Cartridges Type 92” with the addition of the dual use (T89 Airforce and T92 ground Guns)

The Single Type 89 preceded the Binary T89, so a “Loose pack” would be logical ( 50 rounds Loose pack carton). The Binary T89, with its chain drive Snail magazines, were essentially a step backwards to the Type 11 ratchet feed from 5 round clips…instead of a hopper, the clips were carried on a chain, stripped of their cartridges as they reached the ratchet mechanism, and continued on back into the mag body. When the Aircrew Armourer reloaded the magazines, pushing a Full clip into engagement in the chain caused the empty clip to fall out ( and could be refilled from “Loose” Rounds)

Probably the reason for the "chain-snail mag, is that the guns were held too close together to use the large diameter Vickers-type Pan used on the Single T89 gun --as the RAF etc, used the Vickers GO gun in Binary Mounts, with two pans of lesser diameter. The Soviets, in their DT gun, also used a copy of the Vickers GO pan, but deeper, to hold more ammo than their single layer DP Ground gun, with its Pizza-size Pan.

Why the Japanese didn’t simply go for a belt-fed flexible gun (they already had the Vickers Aircooled T89 (fixed) with disintegrating Prideaux Links, also in 7,7 SR (Airforce) and 7,7R (Navy), is a complete mystery.

regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics


#14

Doc: I suspect the Japanese air forces used the magazine-fed flexible MGs because of their tendency to follow British example. In the interwar period the Lewis and Vickers VGO were in use in the RAF. JG


#15

Yes, certainly (in the 1920s and early 1930s) but by the late 1930s, Britain had adopted the Browning AN -M2 Gun in .303 calibre, as made by BSA in the UK and later, J.Inglis of Canada…in both fixed and flexible uses.

So much so that the Lewises were given to the “Small Boats”, including Fishing trawlers in 1939-40, and the Vickers “K” Guns were stored until (in North Africa, at least) they were “borrowed” by the SAS for mounting (in twin mounts) onn their jeeps and desert Trucks. The Vickers “K” was in service with the SAS till war’s end, some even going to the Belgian and French SAS detachments.(Photos available in Gazette des Uniformes). Vickers K guns were also used for Gunnery training on the ground for the RAAF, for both flight crew ( aiming, laying off, etc) and for the Ground crew to teach “registration” of Multiple guns in aircraft wings.
In Australia, excess to requirements Vickers K guns were fitted with a pressed metal Buttstock (replacing the rear grip_ and an accessory Pistol grip and trigger extension, and a Bipod, for use by the VDF (Volunteer Defence Force).

The Japanese just got stuck in the “Pan/Snaildrum Groove.”…they did however, utilise both the 12,7mm and the 20mm in a Flexible role later in the war, and these were Belt fed.

Regards, Doc AV
AV Ballistics


#16

Doc: Thanks for the thoughts. If I recall correctly an older friend told me the VGO was used in the RCAF. I assumed he meant on their Fairey Battles, but perhaps for ground training. The Japanese also used the 13m/m MG131 as a belt-fed flexible gun. JG


#17

[quote=“DocAV”]There have been noted(both on this (old) Board , and on Gunboards, packets of both Loose 7,7SR cartridges and Clipped (5 rounds) 7,7SR cartidges. The Boxes refer to “Cartridges Type 92” with the addition of the dual use (T89 Airforce and T92 ground Guns)

The Single Type 89 preceded the Binary T89, so a “Loose pack” would be logical ( 50 rounds Loose pack carton). The Binary T89, with its chain drive Snail magazines, were essentially a step backwards to the Type 11 ratchet feed from 5 round clips…instead of a hopper, the clips were carried on a chain, stripped of their cartridges as they reached the ratchet mechanism, and continued on back into the mag body. When the Aircrew Armourer reloaded the magazines, pushing a Full clip into engagement in the chain caused the empty clip to fall out ( and could be refilled from “Loose” Rounds)

Probably the reason for the "chain-snail mag, is that the guns were held too close together to use the large diameter Vickers-type Pan used on the Single T89 gun --as the RAF etc, used the Vickers GO gun in Binary Mounts, with two pans of lesser diameter. The Soviets, in their DT gun, also used a copy of the Vickers GO pan, but deeper, to hold more ammo than their single layer DP Ground gun, with its Pizza-size Pan.

Why the Japanese didn’t simply go for a belt-fed flexible gun (they already had the Vickers Aircooled T89 (fixed) with disintegrating Prideaux Links, also in 7,7 SR (Airforce) and 7,7R (Navy), is a complete mystery.

regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics[/quote]

Doc,

I have got the 5-round brass charger (stripper clip) in 7.7x58SRmm calibre and also a fragment of the conveyor belt removed from a Type 89 fan-shaped magazine.

The steel chargers on the belt/conveyor for the type 89 are firmly riveted in place with two hinge pins per charger and could not be pushed out by a full charger as described above. The magazine held 25 such chargers totalling 125 rounds per gun. Was there a different version of this mag with removable chargers or were the rounds pushed out of the brass charger into the mag conveyor via some loader/adaptor? I have been trying to find out the purpose of the 5-round brass chargers for a long time and am getting no nearer yet.

gravelbelly


#18

Gravelbelly: Things would go more quickly if I’d just read my own reference material carefully. Last night I got out a mimeo description of the pan-fed single type 89 and the conveyor-belt version and in it learned that both versions were in fact loaded by a hand-operated mechanical loader employing those brass clips of the type you illustrated. This mimeo was sent me a number of years ago by a longtime student of Japanese automatic weapons who knows his beans. JG


#19

J.Gill,

I could really do with a copy, scanned or photocopied, of those descriptions. It sounds as if I may finally have the answer to what these chargers were used for. Can you oblige me please?

gravelbelly