4 Bore UMC


#1

Does anybody know anything about these holes round the top of the case mouth. I have asked a couple of people and had a few different answers.
First question is should they be there or are they additions? They do appear to be old, they are certainly not new.
Second is I assume they hold in the Over Shot Card? (seen dimpled cases before, example attached) and also cases with serrations on the inside area of the case mouth but that would not give holes.
If they did/do hold in the OSC how?
I know it is fired but is that the correct cap for that case.
Lastly, what date is it?

Reason for asking is that this is not the first case I have heard of like this but never had one before to look at closely. I did wonder if it was dimples worn through but no chance as the edge of the holes are too square.

Many thanks in advance,
Mike.


Side View 1


Side View 2


Head Stamp (no flash)


Head Stamp

Example of dimpled Case.


View inside the case mouth.


Side View.


#2

[quote=“Eightbore”]Does anybody know anything about these holes round the top of the case mouth.
First question is should they be there or are they additions? They do appear to be old, they are certainly not new.
Second is I assume they hold in the Over Shot Card? (seen dimpled cases before, example attached) and also cases with serrations on the inside area of the case mouth but that would not give holes.
If they did/do hold in the OSC how?
I know it is fired but is that the correct cap for that case.
Lastly, what date is it?

Many thanks in advance,
Mike.

The cases with 3 or 4 rows of indents are factory made;
The cases with 2 or 4 holes are a trick to put two small wood sticks (matches for example) for avoiding the top wad carton to leave the case.
Some manufacturers used to sell cases like that but very often the holes were made by people
jp


#3

MY GUESS IS THE HOLES WERE ADDED AFTER THE SHELL WAS MANUFACTURED. BY SLIDING A TIGHT FITTING LENGTH OF STRAW OR WOODEN MATCHSTICK THROUGH THE HOLES WOULD SURELY RETAIN AN OVER SHOT CARD. THE PRIMER IS NOT CORRECT AND THE PRIMER FLASH HOLE MAY HAVE BEEN ALTERED FOR THIS PRIMER TO FIT. YOU DIDN’T ASK ABOUT THE DIMPLES ON THE SECOND SHELL YOU DEPICTED AND PROBABLY ALREADY KNOW THIS IS AN APPLICATION OF ISBAEL KINNEY’S U.S. PATENT No. 185,548 GRANTED ON 19 DECEMBER 1876 AND ASSIGNED TO MARCELLUS HARTLEY. CHECK OUT THE U.M.C. CATALOGS ON THIS SITE AND YOU SHOULD BE ABLE TO DETERMINE FAIRLY CLOSELY WHEN THE 4 BORE SHELL WAS INTRODUCED.


#4

JP, GWB,
Thanks for the replies.

Mike.


#5

For the UMC with the holes its almost certainly the use of matchsticks and candle wax to retain the top card. Look at the exterior of the case in the area of the holes, you might see light scratching from the knife where the matchstick or toothpick was trimmed flush after the wax has set hard.

I have no idea whether the holes were there originally or a later mod, I would suspect the latter

The primer looks like the ones we used to get in the old Baikal and S&B Mk II cartridges in the 70s The case is much older than that I would say.

4 bores were used for mainly commercial duck harvesting in this part of the world so the cases could be reloaded hundreds of times


#6

UMC factory records indicate that they commenced making the 4 Bore Paper shell in February 1883, with a Wesson #2 copper primer.

They commenced making the brass shell in July 1884, again with a Wesson primer, but the notes I have are illegible as to the size and material. It appears to say “brass #17” but I don’t know enough about primers to know if there even was such a thing as a Wesson No. 17 primer. Sounds like a very high number for a primer designation.