7.35×51mm Italian Carcano Steel Cases


Yes, I have original ammunition with corrosive Berdan primers and would like to pull the bullets and use them in modern cases which accommodate non-corrosive Boxer primers (to the benefit of my 7.35 mm rifle).
The purpose is to test the exterior ballistics of the 7.35 mm Carcano projectile, particularly its air drag, which is unknown territory.


The guy knows nothing about guns or ammunition. These were in a box of medals at an Estate Sale. There was also some other rounds that he said turned out to be early 7.62mm pre-NATO rounds which he has already sold. He had these rounds and did a google search for the headstamp and found my website because I have been looking for SMI 942 on a 9mmP. I wish they had been 9mmP and a steel case. The only SMI 942 I know of is brass case and not mine anyway!



I have a suggestion for checking out those SMI 942 mystery cases that will work I think. A standard hexagonal wood pencil runs just about .288 to .290 in. from opposite apexes; the only round pencil I found was .290 in. These pencils will enter (point first) a 7.35 m/m fired case but won’t come close to fitting a 6.5 m/m. Jack

p.s. might be well to use couple or three pencils to avoid being misled by a rogue off-standard pencil.



Why don’t you take some photos of a 6.5mm case and a 7.35mm case yourself and do the calculations I did and see if you get the same results?



I’m as good a sport as the next one, and have printed out the pics in this thread.I’ll take them home and see if I can get them to say something helpful. I think my old folding type cell phone is the only camera even remotely useful in this context so am not real optimistic about it. Jack


Thanks Jack!



Hello guys
As it is possible to me, I will try to contribute to the discussion
To start, I apologize for my bad English, but I use a PC translator.
The sample that I posted, on my site munizioni.eu, is today and to my knowledge the only known in Italy. Some foreign colleagues have perhaps put the authenticity in my opinion wrong.
I could see and document the specimen on several occasions and:
the height of the casing,


the absence of crimping at the mouth of the same,
the type of flat primer present only on 7.35
Moreover, in the event of a new calibration of the neck from 6.5 to 7.35, this operation, on steel cartridges, can lead to cracks as well as weakening the same shoulder and collar structure



without forgetting the extreme difficulty in lacquering the case again after similar workings without leaving any obvious signs
All this makes me think of an original.

That said we come to the “US” cases

Difficult to give an opinion on photos of this type, the problem then that the cartridges are fired amplify the problem.
The two years could and exist being consecutive
I confirm the existence of brass cartridges produced until 1942, especially with non-ordinary (not ball) loading.
I can tell you that in reality the experimentation of cases of 6.5 Carcano in steel began, by the Stabilimento Pirotecnico di Bologna in 1930
and this is evidenced by a specimen present in the Collection of SMI, (Società Metallurgica Italiana
for this reason, given the existing relationships with “allied” in that period, I doubt it was “German” technology.
This technology could instead have been used in the first “standard” production carried out in 40/41 by SMI to order from the Pirotecnico of Bologna
If the cartridges in the USA are "originals, they are unique specimens probably of pre-series

In addition to measurements, the magnification of the head and mouth to see any signs of “falsification”,
the only certain proof would be the control of the trigger, an operation that would irreparably damage a specimen (which is why whoever owns the Italian specimen did not perform the operation
The color of the Italian specimen is dark brown-green

John, thanks for your comment on my work, I tried to be as synthetic as possible highlighting the details of interest for collectors and researchers. By thus facilitating the translation
I apologize for my translations, in the cards, but not having had the good fortune to study English (in my day there was only French) I used a translator.
I can confirm that everything I write is first studied and is in my possession, or I went in person to the collector / owner to check and document the sample shown
For me this kind of study is fundamental and I hope to have been successful.
As you can also see for the production years I confirm only the specimens of which I have or have been sent to me
n my works I try to be the most “professional” I can and I avoid the “told me that …” or “I saw”, without showing any exemplary “visible” situation, this, too frequent in our sector ( at least here with us) …
Only in the presence of a single specimen, as in this case, I express an “opinion”
To affirm the existence of a specimen instead I confirm it only after the comparison of at least 2 specimens not coming from the same collector and if coming from different people I control that does not come from the same source (seller) or from the same show/display

I hope I was helpful


Giovanni - La ringrazia molto per la informazione. È molto interessante anch’è
una affermazione perfetta di riguardo l’anno della manifatura della cartuccia
7.35 SMI 943.

Giovanni - Thank you very much for the information. It is very interesting and
also a perfect confirmation regarding the year of manufacture of the SMI 7.35
cartridge of 1943.

John Moss


Many thanks for our posting. It is good to hear from you again. I appreciate your information.



Dear friends, the pleasure and honor of trying to contribute, as far as I can, to your forum is mine. I apologize for my bad English and I remain always at your disposal for any clarification.
Dear Lew, the pleasure of hear you again is mine, also hoping to see you in the near future



In case there was still any confusion as to the confusion to the calibre of the cartridge in OPs post, here are some pictures of a 6.5 and 7.35 together. I have also tried to replicate the angle of the original photos to make sense to my previous comment about the shape of the rounds. Just my 2c I guess.