Can any help identify this Rifle Bullet? It’s marked R F 384


Found this in the desert in Arizona nearish the Geronimo Surrenders Monument.

Appears to be very old, and found it walking the desert this past Sunday. Any help would be appreciated. Trying to add pics from my phone here…

Thanks, Curt



You have a US military .45-70 cartridge manufactured at Frankford Arsenal in 1884.



Thanks so much Brian! Can you tell me what kind of rifle this would be used in? Or are there multiple rifles it could be?


Rifle and carbine.


How freaking cool is that, besides rocks maybe the oldest thing I’ve found…

Thanks for the great info!



Welcome to the Forum. Another bit of information found in the headstamp of your interesting find is the “R” indicating the load was intended for use in the rifle and it features a 500 gr. bullet. Carbine loads were marked with a “C” and had a 405 gr. projectile.



Thanks for the additional info Dave, I was surprised It was visible on the rocky sand there, and not underground. I’ll probably head back next year with a metal detector and look some more.


Is that the first year of production for the rifle (500 grain) cartridge?



The subject cartridge I believe would be a Model 1882 Rifle Ball Reloading. Perhaps some experts on the subject can weigh in, but I think there was production of this cartridge (adopted 7-1-82 per HWS I) as early as 8-82 based on headstamp lists seen.