7.62x39 steel core


right hand side going down: early Soviet, Czech, S. African, DDR, PRC (JW#A)
left side: Yugo, USSR, DDR Dummy, Reformed 7.62x45, Soviet type subsonic with no powder.
Bottom: Projectile from DDR 7.62x54r short range for Bulgaria 7.62x39
From the Jack Wells collection.


Wolfgang, the 7.62x54R practice cartridge was loaded in the GDR utilizing Bulgarian cases. The GDR did not produce for Bulgaria.


The misidentification as to the country that mfgd. the 7.62 x 54r Short Range projectile, is my fault,and not “Wolfgangs”.I guess it was the way I worded it to “Wolfgang”…EOD is correct,sorry for the boo/bo.
Charles.J.Wells (Jack)
SGM. USA. Ret.


It is interesting to note that the projectile used in those practice 7.62x54r loads is flat-based, not boat-tailed like the one used in the 7.62x39mm cartridge. Although the construction is nearly identical to the “PS” projectile, it is not a 7.62x39mm projectile in the strictest sense. I am unaware of any 7.62x39mm cartridge loaded with this flat-based projectile.

Also it should be noted that the steel core in the “US” sub-sonic ball cartridge is hardened steel, not the soft, mild steel used in the PS projectiles…



AKMS, in fact the practice projectile used in the 7.62x54R is a 7.62x39 tracer projectile with lead core (or mild steel). The cylindrical base is causing aerodynamic turbulences which are slowing down the projectile faster than at a boat tail and sowith creating a shorter trajectory.


Sorry about the Bulgarian mix up, think that I wrote it wrong.
AKMS you wouldn’t happen to know what the specific rockwell hardness on that subsonic would be off hand? I’m still confused about whats steel core and whats AP hardened steel core.
The ss109 steel core is around RC40-45, the M2AP steel core is around RC63, and the 7.62 AP FN steel core is around RC 66. 1045 carbon steel is used in axes and chisels with RC40-45. Very hard steel would be like a knife blade at around RC55-62. Armor plate (mil-a 46100) has a surface hardness of around RC50-53 as well does AR500 steel plate for targets.
Is it safe to assume that hardened steel AP starts at a Rockwell hardness of 50? (Vickers Hardness Scale HV 500)
Does the placement of the steel core have anything to do with armor piercing? Pointed or squared off make a difference? wolf

((7.62x51 SLAP tungsten carbide HV1450!))


I cannot give you a hardness spec. for the US core, but it is hard enough that a hacksaw blade barely left even a scratch on the ones I have sectioned.