7.9 s.S. Patrone


#1

I decided to pull the projectile on a German 7.9 s.S. Patrone as the weight was off the average and something inside was rattling instead of the usual powder flake shifting sound. Well, I found cordite. Compared the round with a correct weight exact same round in my collection and everything including the crimp was spot on. So what I have after pulling the P131 S* 52 36 round is;
Case: 164.7 grains
Cordite: 23.9 grains
Wad card: 0.7 grains
Bullet: 198.3 grains
Total weight: 387.6

I was not aware the Germans used cordite at any time???

Joe










#2

What you have is a cartridge that has had its original propellant replaced with cordite (I’m assuming you mean the long stringy type cordite). A patient person with tweezers and a seating die that is properly adjusted to crimp the case mouth could turn one of these out. It’s darn near impossible, tho, to get as much cordite into the case as would constitute a full charge since it has to go through the case mouth already necked down to 7.9 m/m. Jack


#3

Jack, I looked at the crimp with magnification and it was an original crimp as I have over 9 thousand different 7.92 x 57 in my collection. I have been collecting various calibers for over 30 years and this was an original crimp with correct patina. I rarely post anything other then when I cannot find the answer in other research materials. This particular lot number has a slightly slanted crimp on all specimens I have and that would be hard to duplicate just to fool someone on a non exotic cartridge. I am going to try to fix the pictures posted. I can post a picture of a duplicate and folks will see the crimp is the same.


#4

The loading process for cordite and flake powder is totally different. Germany would have had to buy special cordite loading machines from the UK (in the late thirties!). Germans saw cordite at a definite disadvantage because of its relatively high NG contents. The whole case manufacturing would have to be reorganized, because the cordite must be inserted before shoulder and neck are formed. The German practice of heat treatment of the neck becomes impossible.

There is no reason I can think of why a German manufacturer should have produced a “test lot” using cordite. As Jack pointed out, the charge is much too low, a bit more than half of what would be necessary to achieve standard ballistics. It seems the cordite was inserted into the case ofter neck forming.

To me, the cordite strands in the photo seem too thick for rifle cordite as I know it from .303 cartridges.

I am convinced that this is not an sS Patrone with a cordite load.


#5

As most of you guys know, I love pulling bullets and seeing what’s inside a cartridge. This is another example of why I do it.

Q. What are the marks on the base of the bullet? Are they from contact with the cordite? If so, why didn’t the card wad prevent them?

I agree with the OP’s comment that reconstructed crimps will usually give away a fake. But, I also believe that what one man did, another man can duplicate. Re-crimped cases that are good enough to fool the most knowledgable collector are possible. In this example, however, what would the motivation be for doing so? Surely not value.

Ray


#6

The marks on the lead base of the bullet are seen often and have no special meaning, as far as I can tell.


#7

But I can’t see a plausible reason to fake a loading. No one would be able to tell what propellant was inside by looking at the cartridge exterior. It’s possible that some individual was just experimenting on his own with no intent to deceive. He may have loaded some small number, and figured out within the first shot or two that it was not a very good idea, and so just kept the others intact but unfired.


#8

Jpeelen is right. I have never heard about German cordite loads.

This crimp does not look like a factory crimp to me.
To compare a picture of the same lot number xjda68 showed here.

Rgds
Dutch


#9

JPeelen
Thanks for your comments but the cordite is exactly the diameter, color and length of typical British cordite and it was packed with a machine cut wad on top, similar to the British wad except for the coating and the diameter is slightly larger. Also you say “cordite must be inserted before shoulder and neck are formed. The German practice of heat treatment of the neck becomes impossible.” A .303 round is very similar in dimensions and they annealed necks on some cordite loads as I have in my collection (one example is RG 55 7). I know that the German use of cordite known as DC or Doku Cordite was mostly for naval ships but they had to have experimented with cordite for 7.9 at some point. Yes the powder charge in the 7.9 seems low but remember the Germans were masters at altering powder so that they would dump the same charge weight in most 7.9 loadings but the powder was chemically altered to adjust for bullet weight. Also I understand the Germans liked to anneal most casings but not much evidence of that on some cartridges I have such as the ones I posted of these examples. I do not believe they polished ammo after manufacturing like consumer ammo was done, but have not found much research to confirm there after loading before packaging endeavors. Who knows, maybe someone has fooled me but I have grown fairly good at spotting fakes over the years and I know most of the fake crimp dies like you can get CH Tool & Die/4-D Die to make for you and then it would to have been a loooong time ago to have formed patina over the fake crimp.


#10

[quote=“RayMeketa”]As most of you guys know, I love pulling bullets and seeing what’s inside a cartridge. This is another example of why I do it.

Q. What are the marks on the base of the bullet? Are they from contact with the cordite? If so, why didn’t the card wad prevent them?

I agree with the OP’s comment that reconstructed crimps will usually give away a fake. But, I also believe that what one man did, another man can duplicate. Re-crimped cases that are good enough to fool the most knowledgable collector are possible. In this example, however, what would the motivation be for doing so? Surely not value.

Ray[/quote]
Ray, The marks on the base are common marks from other bullets droping onto others in the colector after manufacture. USGI bullets are the same. Again the reson I decided to pull the projectile on a German 7.9 s.S. Patrone was the weight was off the average and something inside was rattling instead of the usual powder flake shifting sound.


#11

I collect US Military and I pull a lot of bullets, plus I have several boxes of bulk bullets. I’ve only seen very faint dimples, and most bullets have no marks whatever.

Regardless, that’s a minor point. Do all of the cartridges in the carton appear to have the same powder charge? It would be interesting to chronograph a couple to see what the velocity might be.

Ray


#12

[quote=“dutch”]Jpeelen is right. I have never heard about German cordite loads.

This crimp does not look like a factory crimp to me.
To compare a picture of the same lot number xjda68 showed here.

Rgds
Dutch[/quote]

I have over 700 different rounds of factory P131 from lot 1 of 1934 through lot 44 of 1940 and the crimps differ immensely from heavy segmented to fairly smooth taper. I took a look at my dupes and the crimps are mostly taper for P131 S* 52 36 Patrone 7.9 s.S. I have over 30 thousand rounds of various 7.9 and even out of sealed 300 round battlepacks “Packhülse” I have seen variations in crimps. I am asking if anyone has information on when the Germans did experimentation with cordite as you cannot tell me they would not have tried it as they went so far as to make experimental caseless rounds.


#13

There are no files about it.

DWM in Berlin was a 7,9 production plant for sS and SmK Lsp. They did not make any developments in 7,9 Mauser.

btw, the first production of P131 was in 1928.


Rgds,
Dutch


#14

I’m not an advanced collector of 7,9 cartridges, but have to wonder if this was an experimental, why use a common headstamped case? Surely there would be a special headstamp or identifier of some sort.

To my eye, the crimp might not be original. As was said, there are many variations to be seen. I’ve seen projectiles pulled and the case crimp was largely intact, so that when the projectile was re-seated, the crimp looked relatively undisturbed, Easy enough to lightly tighten with a crimp die without disturbing the appearance of the original.

What is the provenance of this particular round? Any clues there that might help with the mystery?

AKMS


#15

[quote=“RayMeketa”]I collect US Military and I pull a lot of bullets, plus I have several boxes of bulk bullets. I’ve only seen very faint dimples, and most bullets have no marks whatever.

Regardless, that’s a minor point. Do all of the cartridges in the carton appear to have the same powder charge? It would be interesting to chronograph a couple to see what the velocity might be.

Ray[/quote]
Ray, it is farly heavy dimpling but I have seen this much before. Like you say it is besides the point as the photo was only to show the heal for complete bullet reference.

No carton. It was just some dupes I had brought home from Phil’s place last year. I was going through them recently as there were several in the baggie all the same. So I was comparing it to what I have and noticed it was lighter than normal when I weighed it as I do with everything. Thats when this all started. I collet pulled it as it had some staining on the tip and I was not sure what configuration it might be. Especially with the rattling going on inside. Not a good idea to kinetically pull a B-Patrone or similar. I am telling you if someone faked this for whatever reason they were good and used some kind of chemical to make up the patina. Then again what for as it is a common cartridge and headstamp.


#16

[quote=“dutch”]There are no files about it.

DWM in Berlin was a 7,9 production plant for sS and SmK Lsp. They did not make any developments in 7,9 Mauser.

btw, the first production of P131 was in 1928.


Rgds,
Dutch[/quote]
Yes you are correct they made 1 28 sS, 2 28 Platz and 4 28 sS as far as I have knowledge of. They of course did not headstamp the P131 again until 1 34 sS as far as I have seen. All were S* brass also. (edit: as far as the headstamps I just mentioned)


#17

Also as far as I have researched Spandau was Germany’s equivalent of Americas Springfield Arsenal where they set up work designing new cartridges. But I am no expert on where they developed what and where. I would have to search my notes. Although DWM did do experimenting.

(Typing correction “Frankford Arsenal” not “Springfield”) Thanks Ray.


#18

A German WWI cartridge with a cordite loading was discussed before at this forum but it won’t add anything to this thread, unless someone may think that you have a “British experimental” of some sort. TonyE surely knows better, but the only documented British 7.9 mm rounds loaded with cordite were the Q Mk I and II proof cartridges of 1939 and 1941, respectively.

Most of our opinions are based on what we know from documentation and it is very difficult to prove a negative, which means finding a document saying: “We, the DWM Berlin company, have not loaded any 7.9 mm cartridge with cordite, ever”. This doesn’t mean that this is a cartridge with a non original loading but it means there is no documentation to prove it is original. A typical situation in cartridge collecting, doesn’t it?


#19

A small point of correction - Although it was often referred to as the National Arsenal, Springfield was actually an Armory. Frankford Arsenal was the center of U.S. military small-arms ammunition design and development

Ray


#20

[quote=“Fede”]A German WWI cartridge with a cordite loading was discussed before at this forum but it won’t add anything to this thread, unless someone may think that you have a “British experimental” of some sort. TonyE surely knows better, but the only documented British 7.9 mm rounds loaded with cordite were the Q Mk I and II proof cartridges of 1939 and 1941, respectively.

Most of our opinions are based on what we know from documentation and it is very difficult to prove a negative, which means finding a document saying: “We, the DWM Berlin company, have not loaded any 7.9 mm cartridge with cordite, ever”. This doesn’t mean that this is a cartridge with a non original loading but it means there is no documentation to prove it is original. A typical situation in cartridge collecting, doesn’t it?[/quote]

Exactly, Someone with some written knowledge of the Germans trying cordite. As far as the British obtaining P131 hulls and loading them with the same bullets and crimping them the same as the Germans, very doubtful unless it was a spiked sabotaged round like the S.m.K P490 S* 16 39 headstamped rounds they produced. I have no knowledge of P131 being sabotage. 27 grains of cordite I would imagine would cause the bullet to exist I would think. If you had pistol powder it might detonate to fast and ruin the firearm but not 27 grains of cordite. I do not know fellas other than to say it is the best fake crimp job I ever saw.