12.7x99 mm from the Dominican Republic


#1

Hi everyone,

Recently I’ve bought a 12.7x99 mm cartridge, presumably API and manufactured by Armería de las Fuerzas Armadas San Cristóbal, located in the Dominican Republic. Headstamp is (12/6 o’clock) .50 81, primer annulus is black and the bullet has a silver painted tip. The bullet has a magnetic core.

In addition to my silver colored bullet, I’ve also spotted a .50 cal cartridge (headstamp .50 79) with a normal silver over red bullet tip, indicating APIT.

As far as I know, 50 caliber cartridges from this factory had the following bullet tip colors:
AP: yellow;
API: white;
APT: yellow over maroon;
APIT: white over maroon.

Some questions arose regarding the tip colors of my round and the round I’ve spotted:

  • Are these two cartridges indeed manufactured by the San Cristóbal factory?
  • Are they indeed API and APIT?
  • If yes, why aren’t the usual tip colors used, resp. white and white over maroon? Are these manufactured for an export contract?
  • Did this factory also made ball, tracer, blanks and other (regular) types of 12.7x99 mm ammunition?
  • Is the quality of Dominican ammunition indeed as miserable as I’ve heard?

Thanks in advance for any help!

Cheers,
Thijs.


#2

The variants with which I am familiar are only dated in the 50’s and 60’s. The headstamp bunter/format is different from the example you illustrated. Your example looks more like those examples I’ve seen from European mfgrs.

The DR variants I have in my collection contain not only the tip color codes you mention, but also silver API and Silver/Red APIT (the red is more like a burgundy). So they have used both their own colors as well as NATO.

I’ve seen ball rounds, as well, but they could have just been rounds whose tip colors are missing.

The latest date example in my collection is 1960, though, so they may have changed things since that time.


#3

Is it just me, or does the base lack the normal rounded edges around the rim and inside the primer pocket? It almost looks similar to those Egyptian 12.7 rounds where the old Soviet headstamp was milled off so they could apply their own when the case was reloaded…

AKMS


#4

@ Keith
You are right, the headstamp differs from the small-lettered DR ones like this one:

I’m not home momentarily but monday or tuesday I will compare the headstamp with some .50 headstamps from the former Yugoslavia. Thanks for the hint. On the side of the case is written that it’s from the DR so that might be wrong.

@AKMS
It’s definitely a 12.7x99 mm , not a 12.7x108 mm. AFAIK, the Soviets never made any 12.7x99 mm. However, I’ll check the edges of the base when I’m home again.

Thanks guys!

Thijs.


#5

I was not saying that this was a 12.7x108mm cartridge, because it obviously is not. I was commenting that the base looks very flat, like an original headstamp was milled-off, like or similar to when the Egyptians reloaded 12.7 cartridges and milled-off the original headstamps.

AKMS


#6

AKMS, new glasses are already on my Christmas wishlist…