This is a commercial box easily found in Argentina, but I guess that it may be new to some of you. It was introduced by FLB in 1990 due to the popularity of BERSA pistols in this caliber introduced in previous years. This has never been a popular caliber in Argentina and it was only made in small quantities by FM “SL” in the 1960’s and by FM “SF” in 1984. Cartridges inside have a GM jacketed bullet, nickeled brass case, FLB .380 AUTO headstamp and a brass primer with purple sealant.
Nice box Fede. Thanks for sharing!
I have that same box, with the same “K1” (lot number?) marking inside the end flap. I also have an unheadstamped round from Argentina, with brass bullet, case and primer cup. I think it is one that is much earlier, from “SL”. Do you agree, Fede? Finally, I had (before the California Law) a green tip round that I cataloged as being full metal jacket, brass case (no nickel finish), and it, too, with a purple primer seal. That is all I can confirm on that round, but it is not just “reported.” It is in my catalog, so I had it in my collection at one time. It had the same headstamp as the nickel-case ball round, which is still in my collection.
John, the unheadstamped Argentine .380 Auto was made in at least two variations differing in bullet profile. There is no documentation about them but several specimens and a full 25 rd. box without markings came directly from FLB. There are other unusual cartridges without headstamp also coming from the same source, like the 7.63 mm Mauser, 8 mm Roth M. 7, .351 Winchester S. L., and .375 H&H Belted Magnum. These were made by FM “San Lorenzo” in the 1950’s or FM “Fray Luis Beltrán” in early to mid 1960’s.
Regarding the green tip with FLB .380 AUTO headstamp, this is a proof loading (“tormento”) made for BERSA.
Bad news on the green tip round. I was told it was a tracer when I received it from an Argentine collector, and on that information, when I gave up my special California License to possess otherwise prohibited ammunition types, it was on that basis. Proof loads are perfectly legal to possess in californai. Darn!!!