Wwii kriegsmarine submarine ammo box for luger & p38


The title of this ebay auction caught my attention when a friend pointed it out to me. I have a couple of the 4160 round wooden crates and also a couple of the 832 round cardboard bricks. When I heard of it I was hoping it was a special German Navy crate from 1940. The item is claimed to have come off of a U-Boat.


When I looked at the photos, I decided not to bid. I could be wrong, and have been before, but I don’t think this thing is ammo related at all, and perhaps not even military.

The German ammo crates I have seen all have a metal lined and are marked on the outside that they contain cartridges. They also have an internal label. The 832 rd brick inside is just over 12 inches long, 5 inches high and 3.5inches wide with a cloth handle on top. The given dimensions of the box are 13.25 x 7.75 and 5 inches high. When I scale from the photo, the sides appear to be just over 0.75 inchs thick. The interior space would be about 11.75x6.25x3.5 so an 832 round brick wouldn’t fit. This and the lack of the metal lining and any markings like those used on German ammo crates convince me this has nothing to do with ammo.

As far as I know, both the AF and Navy got their 9mm from the Army. I have seen 16 rd packets that reportedly came off of U-Boats and they are the same as the normal Army box. The AF sometimes stamped their packets but I have never seen a Navy stamped packet.

The company is not one I have ever heard of associated with ammunition. I suspect that it is for some kind of instrument or something similar and C&F was the manufacturer. I kind of doubt that it is even military. Most military suppliers had been assigned codes by 1940 which were replaced by the 3 digit lower case codes beginning in Nov 1940. The single and double lower case letters were not assigned until Oct 41. If this was an ammo box it would not have had the civilian name (C&F) and the name of the town and province on the label.

My opinions. I’d like to be convinced that this is really what it is claimed to be, but if you do this, please do it in the next couple of days so I can bid!!!

Gunbroker isn’t the only place sellers invent stories.



I would think that if this were an ammunition crate, it would have the caliber and quantity, at least, marked on it. It would be interesting to know the inside dimensions to see if they were capable with a proper fit for 16-round boxes in any given quantity of boxes. It doesn’t interest me enough to contact the owner and ask for them - probably too late to get an answer anyway. ( I would not bid on it even if I thought it was, for obvious reasons).


It seems plausible that it was a Kreigsmarine box, and possibly associated with a submarine.

However, the original contents could have been just about anything. Navigation instruments, communications components, optical instruments, special test tool for diesel engines, torpedo fuze components, emergency supplies for abandon ship/life raft use.

It may have had ammunition in it at one time, dumped in by a souvenir hunting U.S. serviceman, or even by a German sailor after the original packing hd been damaged (by water, being dropped down a ladder, etc).

I would not bid on it as an ammunition box, but have no factual information to support that.


C&F= C.&F. Seifert, Holzwarenfabrik und Eisenbahnbedarf, Gründberg in Schlesien, 3digit code: ejr.
Till now, I have not seen this codes (C&F/ejr) on 7,92x57 or 9mm ammo boxes. I don’t know about other (ammo)boxes.



Could it be an ammo box from captured stock of another nation that used this size crate for ammo which the Germans just reused? Maybe it ended up in a depot and was re-stamped & filtered out to a sub (did the Germans do that?).


John, I wondered that myself but didn’t take the time to measure and figure that out. If it was made for 16 round boxes, each inside dimension heigth, width and depth should be an even multiple of one of the dimensions of the 16 round box. In addition, the matches all have to be in the same orientation of the 16 round boxes. When I did the math, the best fit was for the boxes laid on their back with the label up (assuming the label is on the front and not wrapped over the box), across the width of the box. 5 boxes would fit this way and a stack 4 high would also fit. The problem is the length which accommodates two and a half box lengths, so there is a gap at the end of the box of 1.6+ inches with 40 16 rd boxes. No other orientation of the boxes makes sense at all from the measurements. Perhaps if my rough measurement of the wooden box on auction is off and it is a bit deeper and a bit longer than my estimate you could fill this gap by standing 10 more boxes on end, but that would sure be a strange way to pack ammunition.

I also checked the exterior markings on the 4160 round crates.

Patronen Kasten[/quote]

The last line is cartridge box and I probably copied the middle line wrong. There is no caliber marking on the outside of the crates that I have. If course it is possible a paper label was on the outside of the crates that has long ago worn off in the 60+ years since production.

Kurt, Thanks for the tip. My copy of the original German code book lists ejr as

Which is Woods Good Production and Railway needs, or something similar. The markings show a big “S” with a small “C&F” in the lower loop and it is on the bottom so they are probably the crate manufacturer. The “e??” codes were not issued until May 1941 and I can’t find Seifert, C&F listed in the earlier number code material. There is a Christ and Company in Grunberg but they made armatures and there is a Seifert and Franz but they were in Eberswalde but nothing to tie them together into a Seifert C&F.

Thanks for the thoughts. Interesting to chase but pretty clearly not anything manufactured for 9mm P08 ammunition.




Lew - I thing the word is “Luftdichter” and means “airtight.” I could be wrong. We all know that my German is the pits.


I would say with 98% confidence that is indeed a WWII German manufactured box. The hardware is correct, I have several boxes that have the same hardware. Construction is right.

It wouldn’t be unheard of for manufacturers to still be using full names in 1940. I have several items with full names in the 1940-1941 timeframe at least.

The Eagle over M is indeed a Kriegsmarine property mark.

But I also highly doubt it is ammo related.

Probably for some sort of instrumentation, or spares, etc…with no label or stencilling, its just a WWII Kriegsmarine wooden box. $50 tops for me…


C&F Siefert, Holzwaren etc.

Holzwaren: Wooden goods (Crates, Boxes, etc…Carpentary)
Bahn****; Railway equipments. etc.

Box typical of Reichsbahn equipment Boxes, with a rebated seal inside to make them Water-resistent (Not water-Proof).

Could have come from anywhere, and used as a “container of opportunity” for ammo.

Doc AV