30.06 Armor Piercing Cutaways

30.06 Armor Piercing Cutaways
Enjoy kevin

From left to right:
FA/18 M1917 AP (soft point)
FA/18 M1918 AP
DA/18 M1918 AP Canadian core set back further
FA/38 Stepped High Velocity AP with aluminum filler point tip and driving bands
FA/41 Armor Plate Test
FA/49 AP with Zinc primer
FA/54 Teflon coated AP (for cook offs)

Thanks for the great photos of some great cartridges.

I’m intrigued by the far right cartridge (Teflon coated). I was always led to believe that it differed from the conventional AP only in the coating of Teflon. Could yours be an incompletely formed bullet, or one that is intentionally so? There are many known examples of AP bullets with loose cores and other manufacturing errors and yours could be another example?



Great work again. Thanks for sharing.

Hi Kevin,

nice work !!
question from my side regarding your plate-test cartridge: wasn’t there a cotton wad in the case?
Normally these cartridges have a reduced powder load and a cotton wad was used to keep the powder in place

Ray, to your question: no idea. I would presume production error.


Have cut 3 Teflon coated AP rounds and have seen 2 others (Pepper and journal issue #486, page 18 Better Half ), they all have that air space at the tip of the projectile. From what little I understand about making armor piercing, a small round lead ball is inserted into the jacket of the bullet with the steel core after that. Then the 2 are compressed, pressing the steel into the lead, leaving no air at the tip. Maybe someone wasn’t “on the ball”.
Out of the 2 plate test rounds cut, neither had the cotton wad inside the case. Both were the same head stamp but from different sources. That’s half the amount of powder which should represent the true amount when sectioned.
Only came across 2 rounds so far out of 750 with cotton wads, a 6.5mm gallery and a .577 snider.
Plenty more coming!

Re the plate test rounds. Talking about the .50 BMG in which I’ve see a lot of box labels, a lot of different velocities were tested, so my thinking is in 06, PERHAPS different powders or different charge-weights of the same powder might have generated a need for a cotton wad in some?

I’m also interested in why a reduced charge for plate testing? Isn’t the point to find what loading pierces the plate(s) at a certain range?


Yes, there were a lot of different powder charges to produce different velocities. Only those with the smaller charges needed the cotton filler to hold the charge near the primer to ensure consistent ignition.

The reason for the different velocities - they were intended to simulate different yardages. That way, all of the cartridges could be fired at one distance, say 200 yards, but the velocity would be the same as a full-power load fired, at say, 500 yards, or 1000 yards, etc. If the armor or glass plate was designed to stop an AP bullet at 500 yards you simply had to fire the appropriate test round at the shorter distance to see the results. So, the purpose was not to find what loading pierces the plate at a certain range but to see if the plate stops a bullet at a certain range. Same ting, only different.

Not perfect but ingenious, eh?