Canadian .45 ACP's

On the old forum there had been a posting about Canadian .45 ACP ammunition. Here are some pictures of these rounds. I hope that John Moss and others will add some historical context as I know very little about these rounds.

These rounds are Dominion Industries products and date from 1942. The round on the left is a factory dummy. Note the different font used in this headstamp. Also note the manufacturing differences in the amount of neck crimping.

The following red tipped rounds are helmet test (on the left) and a tracer (on the right) produced by the British using Canadian cases and modified ball projectiles. Here, the ball projectile core has been bored out to receive a copper cupped trace canister and the entire base has been sealed with lead foil. The bullet is secured by a 4-stab crimp.

These rounds were manufactured in 1962 at Dominion Arsenal. There were both headstamped and unstamped rounds produced.

Reference: British Service Pistol Caliber Ammunition by P. Labbett and P.J.F. Mead, TAG 2/3 p.23.


A box I got several years ago from Ellwood Epps, who told me it was Canadian. The box bottom has in ballpoint ink " CP
Nov 19-79 Angus Watson" for what ever that is worth.
It contains one brass cased round with a red painted tip, a GM jacketed bullet and a nickel primer.

Paul and Pete,

Unfortunately, I can add very little to what you have already told us. I have not seen the dummy variation of the DI 42 Cartridge at all - one more I have to look for. I have the ordinary ball and the helmet test. The fact that the helmet test load was done in England squares with the information I have, and I have essentially the same box as does Pete DeCoux. I think some of this ammo was spread around the commanwealth a bit and was probably used as much for the TSMG, still in heavy issue despite the success of the post-Dunkirk Sten Gun manufacture. I have often wondered if some of it, at least, was intended for the Canadian contingent of the joint U.S. Mountain Force that fought in WWII - I forget the unit designation. I know they used a lot of Tommy Guns and Pistols in that special group, but don’t know if the Canadians supplied their own ammo or not. Can’t really think of a reason why they should have, since the U.S. supplied the basic small arms for both the American and Canadian members to keep everything standard. At least, that is what i have been told.

Thanks for posting this though, Paul. Again, it is a nice group. Congrats on your dummy round. That is a new one on me, I think.

John Moss

I never was able to find any specific reason for the very brief reintroduction of production by DA in the 60’s, especially the one with no headstamp.

Wish I could have helped with this one. I like this small group of Canadian .45s very much (along with the DOMINION-headstamped commercial ones. It surprises me, considering the relative freedom of information and the modern history of this stuff (relatively modern) how little of the details of the .45 production up north that we really seem to know.

Well - there’s a new one on me. When I posted my last reply to this thread, it actually scrambled the sentence order a little bit, putting the last sentences and my name in the middle. This is starting to be amusing.

John Moss