7.92x57mm M49 ball round

What is the symbol following the ‘1981’ on this steel-cased Privi-Partizan M49 ball round and why is it there?


The Cyrillic character that resembles a 4 is the first character in the Serbian words for steel case. I would guess that it signifies a steel case.


This is correct. The “y” or “4” symbol in the headstmap stands for “steel”. As you can see in the circled words on the box label, the first word begins with this letter and means “steel”. The second word, which also begins with the same letter, means “case”. Yugoslavian 7.62x39mm ball cartridges with steel case also are also headstamped in this manner, but curiously, steel cased blanks are not…


I have some PPU steel cased 7.92x57 blanks, and they have no primer annulus either. The headstamps are: “nny 1983” and “nny 1973”. Is this normal?


The only M69 steel case blank I have handy is nny 1986. It also does not have a primer annulus color.


Falcon - I have the steel-cased blanks in dates nny 1971, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1976 (two different nose shapes), 1977, 1979, 1981 (unfinished case), 1983 and a dummy dated 1986 with one hole in the primer cup and one tiny hole in the case side. None of them have any primer seal, and none have that extra Cyrillic Character that looks like a “Y” or an open-topped “4” after the date. I would say yours are quite normal.

Oddly, the same Cyrillic character is used after the date, in the same format with a dash between the date and it (41-Y") , on a brass-cased Bulgarian 9mm headstamp dated “41-Y”. That Cyrillic character, by the way, is the equivalent to the Roman letter “D”. I don’t know off hand what its meaning is on the Bulgarian 9mm, but concur that it indicates a steel case on the Yugoslav 7.9s. It only appears on the “41” date on Bulgarian 9mm, but in two bullet types, Truncated and RN. I have only the truncated in my own collection, but have seen the same headstamp with round-nose bullet.

John: I can’t comment about the Bulgarian headstamp, but in the Yugoslav the letter is the Cyrillic letter “ch” (pronounced as in “chew” in English) and is the first letter, as AKMS explained, in the Serbian word for “steel.” JG

JG - you are absolutely correct. I am correct in saying that the letter that appears on the Bulgarian headstamp is the Cyrillic equivalent of “D”. The problem is, I was NOT correct about which Cyrillic letter appears on the Bulgarian 9mm headstamp. It is NOT the one that looks like a “4” or “Y”, but rather one that looks something like a flat-topped “A” and is equivalent to “DE” in sound. I had it fixed in my mind it was the same as the Yugo 7.9 steel cases symbol, several examples of which I also have in my collection, and it is not. I even looked at it, but my headstamp is not that easy to read, as the print is very small and has the only dark spot on the case right over it. My boo-boo. Especially stupid since I keep a copy of the Cyrillic alphabet right on my computer desk, since I am working on some stuff about the Makarov Pistol and ammunition right now, and have been off and on for months. I am sorry about making confusion where there was none!

The question begs to be answered: why is this letter in the headstamp of only ball cartridges and not blanks?


I find it interesting that PPU makes no mention of steel cased ammo today, while they seemed to be very active making it in the early 80’s. Does anyone have much older steel cases from PPU?

CanAm - I have ball rounds with steel cases and the extra Cyrillic letter after the date, dated 1958, 1968 and 1981. I have a steel-cased ball round with headstamp * 11 * 54, a product of Prvi Partisan. I also have a plain wood-bullet blank in steel case, ehadstamped "CAL.7.9 mm PP-66. all of these are caliber 7.9 x 57mm Mauser.

John Moss