Book Review: Colonial Ammunition Co. New Zealand


#1

At the recent Australian Cartridge Collectors Annual Meeting I picked up a new book by B W Gracia about the centrefire metallic cartridges of The COLONIAL AMMUNITION COMPANY New Zealand.

My first impression after seeing it on the table was that it matched one of my interests - NZ centrefire metallic cartridges. After flicking through the pages I was even more impressed due to the colour photos from the front cover all the way to the back cover.
A few sample images from the book - these pages are perfect examples of this whole book. Each and every page (all 36, no blank pages) is stacked with colour photos with small chunks of text explaining the images. Some pages have more text than these examples and the info is easy to read and understand.

A page of 303s

The 243Win page

And the back cover

I am not an expert on CAC cartridges so I cannot comment on how complete this book is but I get the feeling it would only be the odd rarity or variation that might be missing.
This book would be valuable for the 303 collector as it has an extensive 303 section. There is also a fair amount of information on other Commonwealth military cartridges made in NZ including 577 Snider, 577/450 MH, 310 Cadet and 7.62 NATO.

I am not sure about supply of these books but contacting the NZ Cartridge Collectors Club would be the first place to look.


#2

I too have copy of this excellent book, if you are only mildly interested in New Zealand cartridges you need this book


#3

In my current fields of cartridge collecting, CAC has not made a single cartridge. That said, I would not be without this fine study. Most of us, no matter what our specialty, have an interest in all ammunition. If I were a multi-Millionaire with the funds and the space to collect without restructions, I would collect all ammunition up to about one-inch.

I consider this book almost a must for the serious ammunition student, and especially when coupled with the other fine books on CAC, like “A Little Further, a Little Faster” (Title from memory from a fat old man to lazy to walk downstairs and check the title). As far as I know it is still available from the NZCCA, and it is not expensive for what you get.


#4

Anyone have any contact info for the author?

I posted a thread on the New Zealand CCC forum and no luck yet. I also tried to contact the author and the email address no longer works.

It looks linteresting… there are also a couple of other titles I would like to pick up… if any copies can be located…

Gracia, B.W. The Colonial Ammunition Company Cal. .303" Cartridges, 1984, B.W. Gracia, 212 Regan St, Stratford, NZ. bwg.22rf@xtra.co.nz

Gracia, B.W. Whitney’s Heritage. A Study of Cartridges Manufacture by the Colonial Ammunition Company in New Zealand, 1991, B.W. Gracia, 212 Regan St, Stratford, NZ. bwg.22rf@xtra.co.nz


#5

Contact Kevan Walsh, kevan.walsh@esr.cri.nz

If he cannot help you directly (sell you a copy) I am sure he can put you in touch with someone who can. He is a great guy, typical of our friends “down under” (NZ or Oz). Tell him I told you to contact him, if you want.


#6

Thanks John, I sent an email… we will see what happens…


#7

The author, Barry, can be contacted on bwg.22rf@clear.net.nz
But the book may only be available through Kevan Walsh on kevan.walsh@esr.cri.nz.
It is indeed a very good book,I have spent quite of time going through it and comparing notes with my extensive CAC collection


#8

I have a similar Book by Barry W Gracia called Whitney’s Heritage, A study of Cartridges Manufactured by The Colonial Ammunition Company in New Zealand. The book is blue, it is a first edition, is this the same book as the above book but just an earlier edition as I would like to get hold of the book you have Alpinehunter

Richard.


#9

It doesnt mention being a reprint so I would assume it is a different book. I have not seen the other older books so am not sure whether this is an updated version or not.


#10

[quote=“RichT”]I have a similar Book by Barry W Gracia called Whitney’s Heritage, A study of Cartridges Manufactured by The Colonial Ammunition Company in New Zealand. The book is blue, it is a first edition, is this the same book as the above book but just an earlier edition as I would like to get hold of the book you have Alpinehunter

Richard.[/quote]

Here is what the author wrote me:

[quote]Regretfully, both are out of print and supply is long since exhausted. They do both turn up in auction from time to time and this is about the only source I am aware of.
For what it’s worth, the 1984 book was something of a first effort and it omits much of the material included in Whitney’s Heritage. The latter work is a far more informative reference.
[/quote]