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M1923 Cartridge Belt, original or reproduction?


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This belt was thrown in with a recent trade and I'm having trouble identifying it as original or a reproduction.


The belt in question is the one on top, compared to another M1923 and M1917.




A 1/3 or 1/2 inch difference in the height of each pockets.




Slight oxidation on the eyelights, a good sign of age.




Another good sign of it being original, a rust stain and a faded US stamp.




Some really wacky stitching on the back with very green thread.




Other observations were that the belt's material seemed slightly lighter and more pliable. So, what're your opinions on this M1923 belt?

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Does the belt have the small strap under the flap used to secure the 5 round stripper clips?

It does not, nor the M1917.

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Another thing to check; are the snaps for the straps installed or not?

"It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts."

*Sherlock Holmes in "A Scandal in Bohemia"*


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They do not have the straps cut off and there is no hardware that would suggest they were ever installed.

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Could it be a British made belt? The belt looks to have brass buckles but they look to have a slightly different shape.

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The rivet in the last picture on the adjustable part of the belt is wrong. It looks foreign/modern to me. Additionally I do not like the little linear bars/lines that run around the edge, to me it seems I've only seen that on modern snaps. Best ABN



"Only 2 defining forces have ever offered to die for you....Jesus Christ and the American Soldier.

One died for your soul, the other for your freedom."


-Lt. Col. Grant L. Rosensteel, Jr.



''A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have.'' Gerald Ford


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Could it be a Greek cartridge belt that someone gave a phoney US stamp? I think the CMP was selling Greek surplus cartridge belts (might still be).

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Could it be a Greek cartridge belt that someone gave a phoney US stamp? I think the CMP was selling Greek surplus cartridge belts (might still be).

I just checked the CMP and I doubt it. The Greek ones don't have the fastener for the 5 round stripper clips and have smaller grommets to hold the wire hangers which line up with what we're seeing in the photos. Aswell as having multiple lines of stitching near the belt clasp and a non-square belt clasp, the belt in question does seem to have the attributes of a Greek copy. The one big thing that makes me question that is the hardware used for adjusting size on the back of the Greek belts is the same as the M1910s and M1917s, though mine is just the same as the M1923.





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The belt is most likely a repro if the stripper clip straps aren't there. They did not stop using them until well after WW2.

I believe that some were manufactured without the stripper clip straps as early as 1945. I have one such example, a transitional belt made by Harian & dated 1945.




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These belts are normally fairly shoddy - however, they have been around for years, certainly before anyone known these days started making repros.


The lack of top eyelets apart from at both ends of each of the 5 pockets are also telling, as only a very specific type of equipment suspenders could ever fit them.


I *think* these might be Italian-made belts for their version of the M1 Rifle.




2nd Armored in Europe : http://www.2ndarmoredineurope.co.uk

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No Glen...the Italian rifle belts were actually contracted by Gucci and are always beautifully finished! ;)

"We shall defend our island, whatever the cost may be. We shall fight on the beaches, we shall fight on the landing grounds, we shall fight in the fields and in the streets, we shall fight in the hills; we shall never surrender!"


Winston Churchill

" Life is what happens to you when you're busy making other plans."

John Winston Lennon





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Check the buckle. No one US belt has brass webbed female but light alloy. Possibly norwegian, but for sure european.


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