Unknown clip

I need help with this clip. Measurements are:

Lenght: 60,52 mm
Diameter: 11,35 mm
Thickness: 2,58
Inside diameter: 10,52-10,64
Inside height to lip: 1,92 mm
Inside diameter between lip: 8,87-8,94

Plated steel; no marks at all.

Not an easy to clip to find.

This one is for the Czech designed ZB-47 submachine gun. The calibre was 9mm and it used a strange type of feed from the magazine to the chamber. The stick magazine fitting into the bottom of the action and but with the cartridges being moved around the sharp angle by a ‘cog-wheel’.

I have a suspicion that this arm was trialed by the British as it fell into that period in Czech history between the arrival of the Red Army and the imposition of a Communist regime. I hope that others can confirm whether this was so.

Happy collecting, Peter

Fede - how many rounds of 9mm Para would fit into this clip, both from end to end, and from below one of the splits in it to the top of the split on the other end? If it is six, see Lew Curtis’ posting on the ECRA Show. It would explain what his box and clips are for. If it holds eight, back to the drawing board, Lew.

Hi Peter & John,

                  I'm sorry, but this is no a 9 mm Parabellum clip.

                  John, six rounds of 9mm Para. would fit into this clip, but VERY LOOSELY and leaving a "big" 3mm space at the end. The clip lips are in perfect condition; not bended. However, the 9 mm Browning Long fit perfectly, but I don't know if it's the intended purpose.

                  Guess this ain't over. Thanks.

Fede - thank you. It was just a thought. We’ll have to wait for Lew Curtis’further report on ECRA and pictures of the clip from his Czech box.

While I have no idea what it is, it is not impossible that it could be for the 9mm Browning Long. Sweden, well known for clipping ammunition intended for the Kulsprutepistol 45 in 9mm para (the multi-tier 36 round clips one finds from that country), the also used, for a time, the Suomi SMG chambered in 9mm Browning Long, called the “Kulsprutepistol m/37 Typ Suomi.” They didn’t use these guns for long, with most of them being converted to 9mm Para in 1939. They are rare today. If there was a clip and magazine charger for this gun, it would probably be a rare bird today! The magazine for this gun was a stick type, not the Suomi drum, but it held a whopping 56 rounds, according to the few sources I could find on this weapon when I researched an article I did on the 9mm Browning long cartridge. IAA Journals 443 and 444, 2005.

If it is a clip for one of those, it is an exciting find!

Again, I am NOT saying it is. I am simply reacting to your observation that the 9mm Browning long seems to fit the clip well. It could turn out to be a rifle clip of some kind - I know very little about chargers not designed for auto pistols.

Thanks John.

It will not take any known RIMLESS rifle cartridge either. I’ve tried every possible caliber considering rim/groove/head diameter and thickness combinations.

This is an example of the 9mmP on the 8 round stripper clips.
Box is marked BXN 5/50, if I’m not mistaken that makes it a 1950 dated box of Sellier & Bellot made ammo.

Interesting to see the gun it was intended for.

Vlim - your clips were designed originally for the Vz 23 Czech SMG in 9mm Para, and then used in the modification Vz 25 in 7.62 x 25m/m Tokarev. The charger guide was was built right into the right side of the forearm of this excellent SMG. The gun has the magazine in the grip, and was very compact - a really excellent design. The Uzi SMG was based on it.

The clip itself is a near-identical copy of the stripper clip for the Austro-Hungarian Styer Model 1911/1912 self-loading pistol the only real difference is that the two “legs” on each end of the charger are shorter on the later Czech stripper clip than they were on the Steyr-Hahn clip.

Any good gun book on military arms should show these important SMGs. If not, I guess I could pirate the good picture of the 7.62 version that is in one of my “Small Arms of the World,” with attribution.

If anyone cares, let me know and I will scan it and have Joe post it.

Well, I do so hate being wrong!

I got out the calipers and measured the clip I have that looks similar to this one (subtle change of emphasis). It measures;

Length = 60.42mm
Width = 11-08mm
Internal width = 10-50mm
Height = 2.56mm
Width (between flanges) = 8.80mm

Which is reasonably close to the original measurements.

Here is a picture of my one;

and here is a picture of it with 6 x 9mm Parabellum cartridges. These fit perfectly with no slop and with about 3mm total spare length in the clip.

It was a big enough struggle putting together the 6 para. cartridges and I only have one Browning Long kicking about the house. Where is Gravelbelly when we need him?

Happy collecting, Peter

Hi again Pete,

                Your clip seems to have almost identical measurements to mine. Thank you very much.


Your clip looks identical to the ones in my box. Note this is 1943 production so it is unlikely that it was intended for a weapon from about 1947. In addition, this company did a fair amount of ammunition export during the war years as indicated in an earlier thread.

Any ideas would be appreciated.

Enfield, I believe an example of your ZB-47 is on display at the Army museum at Walenstadt. I saw it at the show two years ago. I could be mistaken, but I believe it is chambered for the Czech 9mm that looks like a 9mm Para but is actually a straight case-usually reddish lacquered steel with no headstamp.


Lew - not knowing the Czech definitions, I have to ask this question. I know the ammunition in the box is from 1943, but is there anyway to tell on the box for certain that it was clipped and boxed in 1943? I don’t know what P.B.X. stands for on the label, so I can’t tell if that is just referring to the date of the ammunition. Is it possible that this is a post-war packaging of wartime ammunition? Just a question. I have no idea myself!

Lew - a little quick research on the Czech Samopal 47, designed by V

Is it just an illusion, or are the case mouths on your cartridges actually mis-shaped. The second one from the right caught my attention, and upon closer examination of the others, they look a little flared.


The box got wet at one time and there is rust on both the cartridges and the clips. There is no flange on the CM, just a bit of rust.

I measured the cases and they are all 9mm P08 and from the weight are standard mE loads with the cases dated lot 38 of 1943.

Fede and Enfield56, I measured my clips and they are 60.45mm long and 11.12mm wide. I am sure they are identical to both of yours. I’m sure all three of us are talking about the same clips.

John, I have the label with the wrong caliber like you do, and I have three other similar labels from the immediate post war period which were all German-style but in Czech and loaded with dou headstamped ammunition.

Where the 30 round box says P. B. X. 1943, these three 16 round boxes have P. B. VIII. 1946, P. B. VI. 1946 and P.V. VII. 1946, which indicates to me the three 16 round boxes were loaded in 1946 (with 1945 dated cases) but that the 30 round box was loaded in 1943. In addition, the three 16 round boxes show a powder load of (0,8.0,8) wa1 N 0,38 S1944/2 which appears to be the standard German P08 powder and is very similar to the designation on German made ammunition. The powder description and load on the ammo in the 30 round box is very different. It is VZ. 27/II. N. 0,41g, S. Z. 2/42. The nominal powder load is about 8% heavier than the dou loads in the 16 round boxes and appears to be a completely different powder, and not one I have seen on boxes of German P08 ammunition. The three 16 round boxes I have documented marked 9mm all have P.S. in the upper left corner but the 30 round box has Z. and finally the 16 round boxes all are marked with a different designation in the top line than the 30 round box. The 16 round boxes are marked 9mm PISTOLOVYCH NABOJU (without the accents on the letters).

The most likely candidate for the gun this ammo was intended for is the Czech ZK 383 patented in 1933 and reportedly produced at the Zbrojovka Brno plant on a limited basis from the late 1930s until about 1948 (Nelson Vol 1 page 166). Note that this is the same company that produced my box of ammunition. The ZK 383 was sold to other countries and Nelson indicates that Bulgarian troops used this gun during WWII and were observed using it as late as 1960. The ZK 383 was also reportedly produced for use by German SS troops. This weapon had a 30 round magazine!!! In fact, it appears to be the only Czech SMG with a 30 round mag and one of the few weapons with a 30 round mag.

There were also a couple of Swiss SMGs in Nelson’s book by both SIG and Solothurn that had 30 round mags and could have been sold to other countries, but the ZK 383 is the most likely candidate.

I am satisfied that my box of cartridges (in clips) and the clips Fede and enfield56 pictured are for the ZK 383.

Thanks for your comments and for helping me identify these cartridges. It is interesting that they appear to be a special load for this gun and not standard German WWII specification P08 ammunition.

Cheers, Lew

Well, what can I say?

Not only wrong but completely wrong?

My only reference to the ZB47 comes from an article titled ‘The Czechoslovakian ZB 47 sub machine gun’ by Jiri Fenci published in Guns Review, February 1990 p. 116-8. Now I’ve had the chance to re-read this I see the only mention of loading arrangements are; “… it is possible to fully load the magazine by hand but a filler can be used in conjunction with a belt of cartridges”. Just how that would work, I’ve got no idea.

Does anyone know how this clip would have worked with the ZK 383? Was thee an adaptor on the gun, charger guides on the receiver or an adaptor to fit over the top of the magazine? None of the pictures I’ve found show the weapon in sufficient detail.

In the meantime, if anyone needs one of these clips I’m sure I have a couple to spare for trade although I’ve no idea where they are at the moment.

Happy collecting, Peter


Since the English-language magazine quoted probably used a Czech source for the statement that a “filler can be used in conjunction with a belt of cartridges,” there may have been a translation problem. In function, that of holding a specific quantity of cartridges together in line, between a belt and a charging clip are much the same, and whatever Czech word was used for “belt” may simply have been improperly translated. Just a thought since a “filler” (probably a magazine loader of some sort) was mentioned.

Enfield56, I overstated my conviction. When I said I’m satisfied that the 30 round box of ammo was for the Zk 383, I should have said, “pending new information”. The truth is someone will probably post something with our clips used in a totally different gun neither of us have thought of.

Relative to the ZB 47, Nelson Vol 1 says there were both long and short magazine versions but gives no numbers (could have been a 30 round in there somewhere). It is the date of my box relative to the date of the gun that let me away from the ZB 47.

There is nothing I could find in either volume of Nelson or in Small Arms of the World that indicates how the ZK 383 magazine was loaded. My suppositons are based on the pack for the ammo being 30 rounds, and that packs are often tailored to match the cartridge capacity of weapons. The original German military boxes for P08 cartridges were 16 rounds (two mags for a Luger), going back to the German Army and Navy packs from before WW I. I suspect that the MP40 had a 32 round mag because that is two boxes of ammunition. This likely goes back th the Bergmann MP18 which used the German 32 round snail drum which is again, two boxes of ammo.

I hope someone turns up the details on the ZB 47, and I’d be delighted if someone proved me wrong about the ZK 383 by turning up more definative information.

Cheers, Lew

Early ZK 383 guns were exported to Bolivia for the 1932-35 Chaco War against Paraguay. Some were later available in the argentinian collector market. However, this seems to be the first confirmed clip.

      Peter, John & Lew, thank you very much.