Anyone Heard of Belmont Ammunition?


#1

I got a box of .303 British today. The box is marked “Belmont Ammunition” and “Aim for Quality”. It apparently contains reloaded (or, more likely, re-bulleted) .303 military cartridges. Cases are headstamped as “1943 DI Z”, which shows to be CIL-made. Bullet is stamped on the box ends as 150 grain PSP. There is absolutely no other identifying information about “Belmont Ammunition” on the box. The box itself is attractive, well-made, and professional-looking, blue and white, with a stylized “B” logo, and is top-opening with a somewhat unusual-looking cardboard cartridge separator design inside. It does have the “Keep out of reach of children” legend on the lid flap. The box manufacturer stamp on the inside lid flap says “Carter Holt Harvey Packaging, Carton Palmerston North,” which looks to be a New Zealand paper products company. Has anyone any further information?


#2

Belmont Precision Ammuntion operates in Wanganui (North Island, New Zealand) loading ammunition, it appears they load some ammunition and are agents for loaded ammunition, bullets and cases. I was involved with culling feral goats here in New Zealand a few years back, we were supplied with Belmont ammo. I used .222 Rem,which were reloaded PMC cases, It was heaps cheaper than other branded ammunition, I had no problems with it, shot as straight as I could aim, knocked the goats over! Haven’t used their cartridges for sometime now,


#3

Belmont Ammunition, of Palmerston North ( Just north of Wellington) NZ, back in the 1990s, converted several Million rounds of .303 Boxer primed, Canadian Defence Industries Limited (NOT “CIL” although the Technical support was from Dominion-CIL;). Most of the ammo converted was actually Tracer, which was “Life expired” (the tracer) and otherwise not permitted for civilian use.

Belmont Pulled the bullets, replaced them with 150 grain soft-point hunting bullets ( re-metering the Powder) and packed them in 20 round cardboard packets in their colours.

They also sold “Empty primed .303 Cases” as well. ( not enough Powder from the heavier Tracer Bullet loads).
I don’t know where they got the ammo from ( like-new, 1248 round crates, 48 round packs) but the indications are they came from New Zealand Defence stocks, at a time when the Socialist gov’t of New Zealand was dismantling all the NZ Armed Forces ( except for some Army units, the Air-force and Navy virtually don’t exist nowadays.)

The primers, of course, were Boxer and Noncorrosive.

As any Aussie or NZ shooter will attest, it is (was) very good ammo, and the cases very reloadable, despite age ( annealing does help).

I even had to examine some used in a Drug-trade related Murder…

regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics Forensic Services
Brisbane.


#4

Thanks. I’d have bet it had a NZ source from the box manufacturer’s location. Strangely, the box gives no information in print about Belmont, and also does not say “Non-Corrosive” (or “Corrosive”) anywhere. Would 1943 Canadian (I assume) DI-headstamped military ammunition have been non-corrosive and Boxer primed? I wouldn’t think so, but I have no way of knowing.

It’s an interesting box, and I have never seen one like it previously. I doubt it is common in the USA. It is in good condition and does not appear to have much age on it.


#5

The Belmont Boxes are not common in the U.S., but show up occasionally thru trades with “down-under” collectors. I had a couple of different in my short-lived try at .303 collecting.

I can’t speak for other calibers, but all of the war-time Canadian 9 mm Para ammo was non-corrosive. I have no reason to believe that their .303 and other calibers would not have been as well.


#6

Dear DennisK,
ALL Canadian Boxer-primed Ammo made during WW II --DC–Dominion Cartridge Co, 1941, and all the DI (Defence Industries Limited Plant, 1942-45?) in .303 and 9mm was NON-Coprrosive Primer compound.

ONLY the Canadian Berdan primed ammo ( Dominion Arsenals DA, (DAC,DAQ,DAL) with the .250 (British) Berdan primer were Corrosive primed.
All Pistol Calibre ammo ( .380, .455 and 9mm) was supplied by DCCo.( a commercial supplier) and by DI, and was Boxer and Non-Corrosive.

And Contrary to experiences with US Made Boxer primed ammo (Winchester and Remington) most of which was Corrosive (but Not all) but the US ammo had other “Quality and reliability” issues where Air-Force use was concerned (see other Posts over the years here)…and most of all “case brass quality” ( Canadian brass is still Good after 60 years, US brass mostly fails, either on firing, or by age-splitting).

Carter-Holt-Harvey is the largest Wood and Paper products
Manufacturer in New Zealand, completely integrated ( Plantations, Sawmills, Wood Pulp Mills, Paper Plants, Cardboard Box makers, Paper products makers ( Tissues, Toilet paper, etc), Wholesalers, as well as Land-Holders , and “Conglomerate Corporation”.

Regards,
Doc AV
A V Ballistics.


#7

Doc,

Just a minor correction:

There was no “Canadian Defence Industries Limited”, it was “Defence Industries Limited” or D-I-L for short. It was a wholly-owned subsidiary of Canadian Industries Limited (C-I-L) and was formed in September 1949. It was not just technical assistance but the same production staff on the .303 line in Brownsburg. They ran until 1945 but were resurrected in 1951. The much larger plant manufacturing artillery munitions at what is now Ajax in Ontario was set up by C-I-L but ran more autonomously.


#8

The “Reference” “Canadian Defence Industries Ltd.” was a reference to it being Canadian Government Owned. The Name, of course, during WW II, was “Defence Industries Ltd.” From my information, although the Technological know-how came from “CIL (Dominion”) the Plant itself was GOCO (Government Owned, Contractor operated) and only after the war, was there a part/whole civilian ownership with the formation of the new “DIL”. ( as part of the shedding of Gov’t ownership in Ordnance Plants etc.).

The reasons behind the selection of Boxer as against Berdan priming was probably purely on Machinery availability ( from the Civilian trade and US machinery Makers) and the experience of the workforce…not on the “advantages” of Boxer Vs Berdan, and the exigencies of War.

Anyway, it’s all almost ancient history now…

Nit picking, I am sure, that’s what we are all about.

regards,
Doc AV