7.92x81B MG131/8 Pz-Geschoss with Iron Driving Band

Found this 7.9x81B MG131/8 empty case with Pz-Geschoss pushed too far in the case (see below, the bullet was pulled out). I believe the bullet is an original with an iron driving band (correct me if wrong).
7.92x94B FAKE (should not be belted) 01
7.92x94B FAKE (should not be belted) 02

Edited to correct description.

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These cases are known as experimental 7,9x81 for MG 131/8, they are derivated from 13x64 MG case and are electric primed. I doubt the bullet is original.

Thanks Laurent, that clears things up. I wasn’t aware of this variation and the length difference did not occur to me.

Post title edited to correct cartridge name.

That doesn’t look like a 7.92x81 MG 131/8 to me.
How long is the case?

My MG 131/8 is shown below, labelled as the 7.92 x 82B.

I once compared it to my 7.9mm 131/8.


The connecting cone seemed shorter to me.

Here are mine. The 7.92x81b and a 15x64b


Thanks Rigby for the comparison. So it looks like an authentic case at least. The bullet looks like one from Pete deCoux’s auction #15 (lot #480), except maybe pushed into the case (maybe, but the one in Pete’s auction had a driving band, so maybe not).

I shall find out, since I decided to purchase it and see for myself. The price seemed worth the risk, even if the bullet is a stuffer.

B&W from the sale Larry mentions & one from my collection. Different bullets.

Color photo not to exact size.
the write-up from the sale catalog
480 This rare 7.92x81 MG131/8 experimental is headstamped ‘ avu Waffenamt172 41 23g ‘. It has a copper and brass electric primer with a cracked grey insulator, an empty drawn brass case and a removeable blackened bullet, The very rare bullet has an iron driving band which we understand was only used as an experiment in 1941-42 by the Luftwaffe. Not worked with for long as further development concentrated on the 13mm projectile, it is also found with a brass-washed steel case.


I received this cartridge today. The brass case appears to be an authentic MG131/8 as all of the dimensions closely match those shown on the old municion.org (from the ECRA database). The electric primer is brass and copper with a gray insulator. The headstamp is similar to Pete’s lot #480 above: ‘avu Waffenamt 172 41 19 l’. The letter after ‘19’ looks like a lower case ‘L’, but hard to tell for sure.

Case length: 81.7mm
Neck outside diameter: 8.95mm

The bullet was stuck in the case, but I managed to carefully work it loose. It has a driving band with a narrow groove/cannelure (or it may have been formed if the case was crimped over the band). The bullet and driving band are strongly magnetic, blackened and there is no jacket. It has the appearance of having a bourrelet, as there is a very shallow groove between the driving band and ogive. You can see below in the photos that there is some corrosion/pitting, especially in the driving band. The bullet has a flat base with no markings that I can see.

Bullet photo with dimensions (mm):

Below are some more photos of the bullet.

Let me know if you want to see something else in the photos.

Can anyone tell me more about the Pz-Geschoss with the iron driving band that I have shown above? The design is a little different than the one with the copper driving band.

I found some related topics on the forum, but only Pete’s post above about the bullet with the iron driving band (unless I missed it somewhere):

BTW, I still need to weigh the bullet, but don’t have access to my scale at the moment.

The most surprising thing in my view is the existence of 7.9 mm (German military would not use a “7.92”) experimental cartridges based on the MG131 ammunition.
In Bundesarchiv there is a document from 1933 in which the chief of Heereswaffenamt (von Vollard-Bockelberg) clearly states that against modern metal-skinned airplanes anything short of high-explosive (20 mm if I remember correctly) shells shows no effectiveness worth mentioning.
This did not stop Luftwaffe (born 1935) from knowing better, of course.

Thank you JPeelen for the history. Others may disagree, but I find failed experiments in ammunition often more interesting than the ones that were adopted. There is always something to learn either way.