Earliest known 7.62x39 cartridge

i have read that prototypes of the SKS were used in 1945, and was wondering what the earliest known cartridges for these are dated. i searched this forum but could find no photographs. does anyone here have a particularly early example?

A friend of mine has a picture of the 1943 cartridge. It has a 41mm long case and a shorter bullet ogive. I’ll get him to scan it and send it to me.

I believe that 7.62x41 unheadstamped round that Tau mentions is the earliest known SKS/AK cartridge, but the earliest 7.62x39 headstamp I’ve seen is from 1949.

We are talking about two different cartridges here.

The “Model of 1943” was initially the 7.62x41. In 1948 the cartridge design was altered to what we know today as the 7.62x39 (while the designation was kept). The earliest known hs for these is from 1948 (539 48).
There are also brass washed steel cases without hs but here we can only guess about the year of manufacture.

To my opinion the cartridge designation should be “Model of 1948” but it seems that this did not fit the habits of the communists - seems they could not cope with a date after the German developments.

That is pretty much my understanding of the matter, EOD.

interesting, seems like ripe territory for collecting.

Here is basically all the information I have on the 7.62x41 Soviet.

We may add that the 7.62x41 was designed by OKB-44.

I hope everyone and not just those who have an interest in the 7.62x39 takes the time to look at the sectioned cartridges that AKMS has on the BST page.
I"m not acting as a salesman but those items are great.


As I recall, the length of the case was shortened from 41mm to 39mm to accommodate the use of a longer, steel-cored bullet.

This subject was discussed previously on the forum: viewtopic.php?f=1&t=6471&hilit=7.62x41


Here is a picture of different Soviet 7,62x39 Ball bullets
The left one is 7,62x41 lead core bullet

The Holy Grail…


I know the one on the right and possibly the third from left are standard issue, what about the others?

Thank you, Hans

#2 belongs to the 539 48 hs
#4 has a laquered jacket and goes on the aluminum case with 711 62 hs

EOD, danke!
Any more details about about how they differ from standard issue?
Thank you, Hans

Hans, I have never seen them cut so we may have to wait for somebody to do this.

So items #2 and 4 have some kind of soft iron core and a weight below 8g (inspite of that yellow tip on item #2)?