I got a fired 9x19 Case (brass, berdan primed, brass cap, green annulus) headstamped “SO44 9.”. Please could someone tell me who made it?
The 9mm Para with “SO44” headstamp was made by Sako AB, of Riihimaki, Finland. The eadstamp is also encountered with “43” dates.
The green primer seal is the original loading. It has a corrosive primer. Millions of rounds of this ammunition, along with “VPT” (Valtion Patruunatehdas, Lapua) headstamped rounds were converted in Finalnd to non-corrosive rounds, at the request of Interarms, of Alexandria, Virginia and other offices in London, etc., some years ago, and sold as surplus in the United States at then-attractive prices. Amazining they could convert it, package it, ship it and still sell it cheap with everyone in the sales chain making a fair profit, but they did. Don’t ask me how. The converted ammunition is identified by having red seals. Sometimes a hint of the original green seals can be seen underlapping the red ones.
It is still, today, a very commonly encountered cartridge with the red, but not so often seen anymore, although certainly not rare, with the original green seals.
Thanks John. This came from a modern looking Lapua box (may well not have been the original cases). This round has no traces of a red seal, faint traces of a green seal on the inside of the primer pocket wall, but none on the primer.
Falcon - it is possible that this is another case of remanufacture where they simply used no new seals. I have not seen it that way before, but not all surplus ammo comes to America. This country is a major user of commercially sold ammunition, surplus or new manufacture, but not the only one. The box may be original. Do you have the box - a scan of it would be nice.
The green seals on the original loadings (and your round could also be one that has been through a cleaning process, or something, outside of the factory) are very prominant.
Sorry, I do not have the box, it was being sold by a seller at a flea market, he had some other loose cases for 5p each. I included a fired case from the box as one of the “loose” cases as not all 50 cases were present in the box. All I remember is that the box what white and the wiriting was yellow, I was thinking of buying it, but the polystyrene tray was broken, which put me off.
That sounds like the commercia, fairly current, Lapua box. I can’t be sure, as of course I have not seen every bit of this Finnish surplus ammo sold throughout the world, but my gut feeling tells me it is not likely to be original to the described box. Again, that is based on only observation to date, not on any privileged information from the factory. In short, conjecture on my part.
There were also SO43 headstamps in the box, so it looks like somebody had just used it to store the fired cases. Although I’m not sure why someone would go to the trouble of picking them all up as they were all Berdan primed.