Aluminium Flares


At a local gun show I saw some aluminium flares for sale. I did not purchase any as they were $5.00 each and there were about 8 different loads, with different numbers of white, red and green bands on the case. They were, I would guess, 25mm. Some were about 70mm long and others about 100mm. The headstamp was the arabic numbers for “127” at 12:00 and the English numbers “76” for 1976. Anyone know where they are from?



I cannot ID the flares you saw, but would like to know the nature of the symbols on them – Arabic numbers are, in fact, the 1, 2, 3, 4, etc. that we use commonly – perhaps you meant the lettering? Font style?
Czech military surplus flares are the most common type I see at gun shows – and generally sell in the $3.50 to $5.00 range, but some are much more expensive – like the parachute flares, for instance. It is significantly more expensive to buy new commercial equivalents for these flares, and like everything else, they will dry up at some point, too, I believe. Incidentally, the bands on these flares represent the number of stars that are loaded into them – commonly, single, double, or multiple (three or more being loaded into the triple banded variety. I think aluminum flares offer an excellent, and underappreciated, area for collector study and research. Hope this helps, Mark


Mark51–Thank you for the reply. However, I must correct one statement. Arabic numbers are not the same as English numbers. Below is a chart of the two systems.

It is true that cartridges made in Arabic counties do sometimes use English numbers. In this case they have used both styles. Also, while Arabic script reads right to left, numbers always read left to right.


Yes, my over-zealousness to answer you quickly had me confusing the ‘borrowing of the system’ with the actual numbers themselves. I wonder how one makes sense of either the 7 or the 8 when it stands alone, as we have difficulties with the 6 and the 9? Thanks for the clarification. I would buy the flares you mentioned at those prices – I have not seen these at my local showsand these may go the way of the East German ones (gone) ----Mark