9mm Luger-Need Help With ID


#1

I picked these up about a year ago and am just getting around to logging them in the collection. I think the second from the left is a Glaser and the other three are MagSafe. My questions are as follows:

  1. The “Glaser” has a much more blunt bullet than any of my other Glaser loads. Can anyone confirm that it is a Glaser and give me an approximate date for this style. The blue color is similar to a Glaser in my collection from 1994, but that load has a very sharp ogive bullet. I also have never seen a Glaser with a Starline case.
  2. The two “MagSafe” on the right are similar to a round in my collection from about 2004, which is a different ogive truncated HP bullet with a black tip seal. These two are similar but different ogive bullets were used to make them.
  3. The load on the left appears to be a MagSafe, but the sawtooth jacket with a knurl is very different from any MagSafe I have seen. The only place I have seen the sawtooth jacket and knurl are on a South Africian copy of the MagSafe load, but this one has a different bullet from that load (which has a PMP headstamp.

Any ideas on these cartridges, Name of the MagSafe loads, dates, anything???

Cheers,
Lew




#2

I thought I had previously posted the PMP headstamped MagSafe, but I can’t locate it so here it is again.

Lew

PS: On my website under Misc Drawings, I have a drawing of a South Africian Glaser and photos of about eight different South Africian Glaser loads and bullets.




#3

I asked Will Reuter, a recognized expert on South Africian ammunition, to look over this thread. He has done some great research on South Africian ammunition, but he has never heard of MagSafe rounds being loaded there. This brings into question whether either of the two cartridge with bullet knurles I illustrate above are South Africian. Will suggests that the sawtooth bullet jacket and knurl on the bullet could be the result of MagSafe using 38/357 bullets as the basis for these rounds. Can anyone identify 38/357 bullets that may have been used and their date of introduction?

Has anyone seen MagSafe loads with these style bullets?

Thanks to Will for the information.

Cheers,

Lew


#4

I have two loads with the knurl, just like yours, on the bullets. They are they same, simply in different cases. Both are “WIN” headstamped cases, one plain brass and one nickeled brass.
However, the edges of the scallop do not stick up above the plastic like on years, and the basic color of the plastic is yellow, not orange. They are the “9W” loading.

Will’s assessment that these may have been made from .38 bullets is quite plausible. When Joe Zambone still was making the ammunition, all of the bullets in all calibers started life as standard bullets of one sort or another. No “Magsafe” bullets or bullet jackets were made to his specifications for him, or at least that is what he told me. He converted bullets in all instances.
Sometimes, he converted ammunition. That is, his loads started out as loaded cartridges, and he utilized the original case, primer and bullet to make his load, changing only the powder to achieve the results he was after.

I cannot speak for anything done after the outfit in Florida acquired the firm, and/or after Joe was killed in an accident in New Zealand.

I have never seen a Magsafe of any caliber in a foreign case, to my remembrance. Of course, my memory is getting dimmer and dimmer as time goes on.


#5

Of the two magazine articles and one chapter in Evan Marshall’s and Ed Sanow’s Street Stoppers book, the primary brands of bullets that Joe Zambone would use was Winchester and Remington. He would melt out the lead cores by hand and then place the pellets into the copper jacket and fill it with a custom blended marine epoxy. Zambone would use NPE cases to load his bullet in.

I have no doubt that the Magsafe with the scalloped bullet is indeed a Remington brand .357 dia. scalloped bullet jacket.


#6

Leon is completely correct in his opinion of the bullet in question. It is the .38/357 pr0jectile that Remington simply referred to as “semi-jacketed hollow point” and intended for the .38 Special and .357 Magnum cartridges.

As just a side note, this basic bullet style was loaded by Remington, for a relatively short time, in 9mm Para also, but without the cannelure on the bullet. I have a 72 round box of this ammunition that is the same box as that used with the RA 68 9mm box by the military, but with no lot number. It is basically the late-style .45 auto box used for 9mm, thus the odd quantity.
I was told this particular packaging of the semi-jacketed hollow-point load was for a Government LE Agency, but I don’t recall which one.


#7

Thanks John and Leon! Clearly the cartridge with the WIN headstamp is a US MagSafe load, perhaps a 9W. What kind of date do you have on these rounds John?

The two bullets could not have been made from the same 38/357 type bullet. On the PMP headstamped round the knurl is about 5mm above the base of the bullet (as measured from case distortion) and on the WIN headstamped round the knurl is about 6.8mms above the base.

I suspect the PMP headstamp is the result of someone in South Africa buying some MagSafe bullets, or perhaps having someone buy the cartridges and pull the bullets so they could be mailed and then loaded in South Africa. I can’t remember PMP cases being generally available in the US.

Again, thanks for the help!

Cheers,

Lew


#8

Rolf Foerster came up with the identification of the WIN headstamp load!!!

Still have some questions on the PMP headstamped load. has anyone week this type of bullet???

Cheers,

Lew


#9

Lew,

I took a look at my Remington 38Spl rounds (95gr, 110gr & 125gr SJHPs) and all of the copper jackets on the 38’s were much too tall (from cannilure to where the scalloped jacket ends) compared to your two Magsafe rounds. So I went to my 357Mag rounds (I only have the 125gr & 158gr loads), which are a bit older than my 38’s, and the jackets on these Mag rounds are visually much closer to your samples.

A quick measure of my 125SJHP came out at 5mm from the case distortion to the bullet cannilure (same as your PMP round). My 158SJHP had only the very faintest case distortion and my sloppy measurement came out to be around 8-9mm (close to your WIN round). Visual inspection of the 357Mag 125gr & 158gr rounds side by side it is noticable that the 125gr bullet is significantly shorter than the 158gr bullet.

I believe that Joe Z. probably used both the older style Rem SJHP bullets in both 125 & 158 grains for his Magsafes, that is assuming that your PMP round is an actual Magsafe bullet.

Unfortunately I don’t have any Magsafes that use the scalloped Remington jacket, so I don’t have one to measure and compare to you WIN stamped round.

If we hade a couple more measurements from Magsafe rounds with the scalloped jackets, we could probably determine if the Rem 125 or 158 grain bullets were used (as long as the measurements were all very close to one-another).


#10

Leon, Thanks for the measurements. That helps tie down the PMP load as definately a Joe Z bullet. I really appreciate the help.

Cheers,

Lew


#11

Lew et al - The only thing that leaves me wondering if the bullet in the PMP-headstamped case was made by Joe Zambone is the way the scallops stick up above the plastic nose of the bullet. It is a jam waiting to happen with those thin-wall projections so high above the nose. Joe tested most of his rounds in a pistol and also a Thompson SMG. He used to complain to me, good naturedly, about what it cost him to put a magazine full of his rounds thru the TSMG in a matter of seconds! I have seen no Magsafe round with any condition anything like this. I will have Joe post a picture of my rounds I just took to show the bullet shape and construction.

My two rounds have the following measurements:

Overall cartridge weight:

Brass case - 136.3 grains (8.81 grams)
Nickel case: 133.6 grains (8.64 grams)

I am not at all sure that the difference is significant when you consider these bullets were basically hand-made!

Length from the head of the cartridge to the bottom of the knurled cannelure on the bullet:

Brass case - 0.7895 inch (20.06 mm)
Nickel case - 0.821 inch (20.86 mm)

Bullet length from the “shadow” of the base on the case to the tip of the bullet (approximate - a little difficult to accurately measure):

Brass case - 0.5365 inch (13.63 mm)
Nickel case - 0.536 inch (13.62 mm)

With me taking a measurement like this, the difference is meaningless.

Now, about dating these rounds. It is a bit complicated, but I will do the best I can.

The first price sheet I have that lists the 60 grain-bullet “Swat Load” is dated January 24, 1988. It is listed under Index number 9AW.

On the price sheet of October 10, 1988, the index number is changed to simply “9W.” The bullet weight remained at 60 grains.

The Swat Load 9W is dropped on price list dated July 7, 1989.

Swat Load 9W is reinstated in the line on the price list of January 13, 1995, where it is shown as “NEW.” The bullet weight is then 58 grains.

On the price list of August 30, 1995, the Swat load is again dropped from the line.

The price list of November 8, 1995, again shows the Swat Load in the line, now with a 68 grain bullet.

An undated price list attached to a letter for Khaled W. Akkawi, who purchased Magsafe, countersigned by Joe Zambone who, the letter mentions, was to remain active in the Research and Development of the line, dated April 22, 1998, still shows the 9W load. It is the first price sheet showing a Casselberry, Florida address rather than the oirignal Magsafe address in Olympia, Washington.

A catalog from the new Magsafe Ammo Inc. (Previousl Magsafe Ammo Company), dated February 1, 1999, reveals that the 9W Swat Load is no longer offered. The line is cut from the 44 different calibers and loads shown on the January 13, 1995 price list, to 28 different loadings. For reasons unknown, most of the Swat loads in various calibers remained on that list, with the most obvious absence being the 9 mm Parabellum.

The few subsequent “Cassellberry” price lists I have do not show the load. My file on this company effectively ends at the turn of the century (2000), about when our store closed and I no longer had virtually automatic access to catalogs from this or any other company.

I hope the above information is of some help and interest. In a few minutes, I will send Joe Jones my picture for posting, which he will do when he is able to.


#12

Two specimens of the Magsafe Index 9W 9 mm Parabellum cartridge. Note that the plastic of the bullet nose
protrudes well above the scallop of the gilding metal half-jacket.

Photo by and collection of John Moss


#13

John, Thanks for the info. Clears up any doubt and I have put the round in my first post (WIN hst) in my US section. This whole issue of what MagSafe made and when confuses me. One day we should compare notes and specimens and do something for the IAA Journal.

I’m going to keep the PMP headstamped round in my South African section. This round would be tough to load without distorting those “teeth” unless someone took considerable care, such as using a grommet type bullet puller to hold the bullet while it was seated. It is another round I have no idea on.

I have a round I got from the FBI range that was loaded for the FBI to test so there was some level of official interest in the US, and perhaps there was in other countries, or this could be a one-off load by a shooter. If you believe the Strasbourg tests referenced on Rolf’s packet, perhaps a hunter in South Africa wanted to hunt Cape Buffelo with his 9mm pistol!

Thanks to everyone for the help.

Cheers,

Lew


#14

I have expressed my opinion on the so-called Strasbourg tests recently on another thread on this Forum, including why I think it is absolute phony. That last word “phony” sums up my opinion of it.


#15

When in doubt, check the internet!!!

I went to the MagSafe site (http://magsafeonline.com/)last evening and found the picture below. Two of the bullets along the top row look close to the bullet in the PMP case. I suspect they are the 37 grain SWAT loads listed for both the 38 Special and the 357 Magnum. It makes sense that these are revolver bullets since the shape would make it difficult to feed in many autopistols.

It looks like someone in South Africa got hold of some MagSafe revolver bullets and loaded them in PMP headstamped 9mm cases!

Note the three bullets with the red filler in the center of the photo. It looks like they have no shot, just a plastic filler. Wonder what these are?

Cheers and thanks to everyone,
Lew


#16

Lew - The resin-only core loads are actually the SWAT or Super-SWAT loads in .40S&W and .45acp, or at least they are supposed to be. This should also be the case for the 10mm load. If you look at the prices & specs section on the magsafe site you can see how those SWAT loads have really high velocities, which is due to them having only a resin core. The 10mm SWAT load mentions “resin-core” in its special info section, which I take to mean “resin-only”, and in the FAQ section under SWAT it says: “The .40 S&W and .45 ACP SWAT Loads have epoxy-only cores”. I have also seen yellow colored resin for the SWAT type in recent years.


#17

Here is a photo showing 4 of the .357mag early Magsafe loads with a similar type of bullet, each with a slightly different resin & shot configuration (from Woodin Lab):


#18

DK, Thanks, your last picture shows the bullet in the PMP load. I stongly suspect someone in South Africa got hold of some of these 357M bullets and tried them out in a 9mm. Doubt they would feed, but South Africa has a habit of adding a plastic tip to loads like the THV or the Cone load shown on my we site to make they feed well.

I recently picked up a set of all the MagSafe current production and all the SWAT loads have yellow filler, so they must have moved away from red!

I much appreciate this reply!

Cheers,
Lew


#19

I just noticed a photo of a .380 I have, and it has a similar blue tip to the first photo in this thread. It looks like a Glaser at first glance, but it is also larger than expected for such a bullet. The label on it says “Swarm”, and it has a Woodin lab reference card number. I had heard of “Swarm” loads, but I thought they were just repackaged Genco Coreshots or something. Maybe the makers of Swarm made some loads similar to Glaser with larger tips? Or maybe it was just an odd production run for Glaser when they had some bullets with larger plastic tips which were repackaged as Swarm? Oddly enough, this same cartridge shown below had a blind primer pocket.