7x54 "Boer Mauser"


#1

This is probably the obvious but I just can’t match the dimensions to any of my books. Headstamp is like a German 7.65 Argentine. What does the green bullet mean? Thanks;Jack
BULLET-----------.289
NECK-------------.313
SHOULDER-------.431
HEAD-------------.469
RIM--------------.470
CASE------------2.104
OVERALL--------3.064

[/img]


#2

This is the 7x54 “Boer Mauser” cartridge supplied to the Boers and used by them during the 1989-1902 second Boer War against the British. This one was made by DWM presumably from necked-down 7.65x54 Mauser brass originally intended for Argentina, as is shown by the “FyA” in the headstamp (“Fusile y Ametralladore”, indicating suitable for rifles and machine guns). The cartridges was given about the same overall length as the 7x57 by being set higher in the case.

FN also made some in 7x54 cartridges for the Boers, presumably also from cases intended for Argentina, but headstamped “FN 96”. The bullets of both the DWM and FN cartridges are sometimes found with a green wax coating.

The Boers also received quantities of normal 7x57 cartridges, and their successful use of both rounds in their Mauser rifles, as well as causing the British to rethink their military tactics finally convinced them that they should upgrade their Lee-Metford rifles for charger loading.
The eventual result was the Lee-Enfield.


#3

…also called “Kortneck” by Boers


#4

Two amendments to the above:

Firstly, the 2nd Boer War started in 1899, not 89 (my finger trouble!)

Secondly, the FN 7x54 cartridges are perhaps more likely to have been made by necking down 7.45x54 cases originally produced to Belgian Army specification rather than for Argentina.


#5

Apparently probelms did arise after firing alot of the short necked rounds in 7x57 Chambered rifles. The exposed 3mm area of the chamber throat in front of the short neck would be eroded, causing regular length cases to stick in the chamber.= when fired.


#6

Thanks for the info guys! It’s allways nice to dig through a box you have set aside and come up with a new cartridge!! Jack


#7

Good info!!!
Im always looking for information related to the 7,65x53mm.
I have read somewhere the cases used were from the reaminig of the Spanish order for 7,65x53mm, changed later to the 7x57mm.

Thanks
Martin


#8

Martin


#9

Thank you very much for the corrections.

You are right, Spain order only a few Mausers Model 92 cal. 7.65mm carbine for the Spanish Navy with a contract for 400 rifles. Then change to the 7x57mm.
Spain have the 7,65x53mm as a second cartridge as Argentina redirect 15.000 rifles and carbines 1891 from his order, to be used by Spain in Moroco and then, IIRC, in Cuba.

I would be very interesting to know why they decide to use shot cases in 1896?
I would have to search for a cancelation of order from Argentina in those years. if I find anything will post it.

Thanks
Martin


#10

[quote=“JJE”]This is the 7x54 “Boer Mauser” cartridge supplied to the Boers and used by them during the 1989-1902 second Boer War against the British. This one was made by DWM presumably from necked-down 7.65x54 Mauser brass originally intended for Argentina, as is shown by the “FyA” in the headstamp (“Fusile y Ametralladore”, indicating suitable for rifles and machine guns). The cartridges was given about the same overall length as the 7x57 by being set higher in the case.

FN also made some in 7x54 cartridges for the Boers, presumably also from cases intended for Argentina, but headstamped “FN 96”. The bullets of both the DWM and FN cartridges are sometimes found with a green wax coating.

The Boers also received quantities of normal 7x57 cartridges, and their successful use of both rounds in their Mauser rifles, as well as causing the British to rethink their military tactics finally convinced them that they should upgrade their Lee-Metford rifles for charger loading.
The eventual result was the Lee-Enfield.[/quote]

This “Kortneck” was made by the DWM using argentine contract 7.65 x 54 Mauser ctges., the letters in the headstamp FyA leaves no doubt about it, they means “Fusil y Ametralladora”, a denomination specified only in the argentine contract of ammo for the Mauser Modelo Argentino 1891.


#11

To fully understand why DWM ( and FN) used cases headstamped with an Argentine contract headstamp to make Kortnek ammo for the Boers, one must undertand case making practices of the period…Factories made big runs of cartridge cases, but only loaded them as Orders required to be filled and despatched. So a cartridge case made in say, 1896 ( and so HS) might not be “filled” and despatched until a year or more later.
Factory over-runs also account for excess “dated” cases. This disconnect between case-making and filling continued up to WW II ( at least in peace time) also because many countries also bought empty cases to fill “at home”, to supplement complete cartridges, or whilst their own native ammo plants were being established. ( as did Argentina in the 1930s, etc).

Further, the urgency with which these lots of Kortnek were assembled…(about 1900)…DWM would have used whatever cases were in stock at the time, giving priority to the Boers over long term contracts with Argentina…And both DWM AND FN had been doing in-house experiments from 1898 or so, with the Kort-nek design, well prior to the Boer delivery.
Of course, the whole concept petered out with the demise of the Boer Republics in 1902, and the realisation of the chamber erosion problems in 7x57 chambered rifles… and another “7mm” to just confuse everyone was not a good commercial decision.

On another tack, (“lateral thinking”)…might the 7x54 have had any influence on Pederson in his development of the 7x53 (Aka .276 Pedersen semi auto cartridsge???), or was this just an example of separate development leading to a common result???

regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.


#12

[quote=“DocAV”]To fully understand why DWM ( and FN) used cases headstamped with an Argentine contract headstamp to make Kortnek ammo for the Boers, one must undertand case making practices of the period…Factories made big runs of cartridge cases, but only loaded them as Orders required to be filled and despatched. So a cartridge case made in say, 1896 ( and so HS) might not be “filled” and despatched until a year or more later.
Factory over-runs also account for excess “dated” cases. This disconnect between case-making and filling continued up to WW II ( at least in peace time) also because many countries also bought empty cases to fill “at home”, to supplement complete cartridges, or whilst their own native ammo plants were being established. ( as did Argentina in the 1930s, etc).

Further, the urgency with which these lots of Kortnek were assembled…(about 1900)…DWM would have used whatever cases were in stock at the time, giving priority to the Boers over long term contracts with Argentina…And both DWM AND FN had been doing in-house experiments from 1898 or so, with the Kort-nek design, well prior to the Boer delivery.
Of course, the whole concept petered out with the demise of the Boer Republics in 1902, and the realisation of the chamber erosion problems in 7x57 chambered rifles… and another “7mm” to just confuse everyone was not a good commercial decision.

On another tack, (“lateral thinking”)…might the 7x54 have had any influence on Pederson in his development of the 7x53 (Aka .276 Pedersen semi auto cartridsge???), or was this just an example of separate development leading to a common result???

regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.[/quote]

You are right DocAV, regarding your last question, I think that DWM was not experimenting with nothing, in the hurry, they loaded the 7x57 Boer ammunition with whatever they had at hand, in this case, the large amount of cases for the Argentine contract, by the way the US military observer attached to the Boer forces wrote about the extraction problems that some soldiers reported from the battlefield using the Kortneck.


#13

DocAV,
Thanks for the info, very good as usual.

DGFM,
Just notice you are member of the AACAM.
I talked to Horacio today.
Have you see any 7,65 with this headstamp?
I will digg in my collection tomorrow, I remember one or two.

Thanks
Martin


#14

Martin –

I note that one English cartridge dealer (Gordon Conway of Conjay Arms Ltd) in his 1981 catalogue was advertising under 7.65x53.5: “18 FyA 96 DM”, “18 FyA 09 DM” and “18 FyA 11 DM”. I bought a specimen of “18 FyA 96 DM” from him, and it turned out to be a 7x54! It was rare for anything to escape Gordon’s notice, but this one obviously slipped through undetected.

The other DM 7.65x53.5 cartridges for Argentina in his catalogue at the time were earlier dates: “18 DM 92 K” and “18 DM 93 K”.

I would be most interested to know if you find a 7.65 cartridge with the “18 FyA 96 DM” headstamp.


#15

[quote=“beleg2”]DocAV,
Thanks for the info, very good as usual.

DGFM,
Just notice you are member of the AACAM.
I talked to Horacio today.
Have you see any 7,65 with this headstamp?
I will digg in my collection tomorrow, I remember one or two.

Thanks
Martin[/quote]

Martin:
I dont remember wich headstamp have the one I use to wrote an article, that in fact is the one from Horacio


#16

Hola Javi, ac


#17

Fede –

Excellent information!

Is it known why the Boers asked for some of the bullets to be coated with wax? I haven’t heard of any of the 7x57 bullets being so coated.


#18

The grease was appliied to the bullets by the Boers in an attempt to correct the jacket cracking. They also pulled the bullets and reloaded with a reduced charge to the same end… There is a write up on this round in Ron Bester’s book on Boer War arms.


#19

Orange –

Thanks for that information


#20

Fede Im impressed!!!
We must talk one day in person.
So the 7x53mm cases were from the Argentinian order.
I have one of those 97 F. y A. 97 D. M. in my collection.

Did you notice that in 1896 the change from 18 D. M. 96 F. y A. to 96 F. y A. 96 D. M.?

Thanks
Martin