These are original 5 round 7.62mm Trials Pattern 'Horseshoe' Charger Clips, produced for the trials of the FN FAL for the British Army (X1 Series Rifles).
Illustrated in R. Blake Stevens 'The FAL Rifle' (Collector Grade Publications), these clips were designed for use with the 'A' Series of X1 Rifles which had short top covers with a charger loader built in. The idea of this being that the 20 round magazine would stay permanantly attached to the rifle, as for the No4 Lee Enfield rifle, and be reloaded as required using these 5 round charger clips, the clip being discarded after use. The design appears to be modelled on the earlier Belgian produced 10 round 'Horseshoe' clips for the early FAL's, which was also trialed in the North American FAL trials. The clips did not gain acceptance, or survive the rejection of the half top cover for British service and were not seen again after the trials were completed.
The rear part of the clip holds the base of the cartridge, the rims sliding into channels pressed as part of the clip, and are held in position by a flat spring as for a conventional clip. The front part of the clip is formed into a narrow channel which the nose of the bullet rides in, the outside of which fits between two projections or horns which these rifles had projecting from either side of the piston boring in the front of the receiver. The top of the clip (which is pressed from a single strip of thin steel sheet) forms a space above the rounds for the thumb to press down on the ammunition to press it into the magazine. This makes for a very ridgid assembly when fitted, although in the great scheme of things is probably over complicated for the job!
The clips are in excellent condition and have probably never been used, although 60+ years of storage have left some with very minor patches (it mostly rubs off with an oiled cloth) of surface corrosion. The clips are finished in a matt black paint. With the aid of an eyeglass and good light, it can be seen that the clips are stamped along the top face 'P.C.C. 1956' although on none of them is it exactly crystal clear! This could indicate that they are of American manufacture (Peter's Cartridge Company?) although, like the markings, this is not clear either.
Unit of Sale; 1 x 5 round Clip.
Stock Number; FAL12.
Please note that the drill ammunition used in the photographs is for illustrative purposes only and is not included in the sale - nor is the charger loading top cover! On some of the clips the manufacturers mark is faint to the point of invisibility under all but the best of conditions. Returns will not be accepted because of unclear markings - these clips are rare enough in our opinion that any markings may be regarded as a bonus.
Trials Pattern, 5 Round 'Horseshoe' Charger Clip for FN FAL/X1 SLR
- Product Code: FAL12
- Availability: 20