Eley 38 APC (W&S or Colt) (drawing)

Another drawing from the Leeds tracings.

Happy collecting, Peter

Hardly a productive comment but don’t you detect a sort of flair in the style of drawing and the feeling that that these were people happy in their work? I know its a silly comment but somehow it comes across

I wish they had been happy enough to date their drawings!

Although I can’t put a date to this drawing, a soft point loading for this caliber was first listed in Eley catalog 1908-9.

I thought it might have been me, cropping the scan of the photocopy too closely. However, when I look at the photocopy the normal place for the date to appear, just below the Tracing Number, is cropped on the original tracing,

So there’s no help to be had there although it might be that there are other copies of the tracing in the file at Leeds.

Vince, as an incorrigible ‘old fogey’ I revel in the draughtmanship shown in these (and the other) drawings. There is simply no way that anything done using mechanical or electronic means could show the individual flair of these drawings. It’s just another indication of the de-skilling prevalent in so many aspects of the modern world. Do people take pride in a piece of work as it chuggs off the plotter, I fear not.

However, the real life in a lot of this work are the preliminary sketches done on the back of bits of scrap paper as a draughtman works out how to draw something from an artifact held in his hand. After 90 odd years these drawings have faded (or the paper darkened) which makes them a bit hard to copy but those tiny freehand sketches are little jewels. You can almost feel the effort as the draughtsman works out the ogival curves or the radius of a shoulder, of the cartridge they’re working on.

Oh, well.



As Peter has pointed out, these Eley drawings are dated outside of the margin frame. I don’t have a copy of No.666 myself, but looking at my other drawings, No.659 (Experimental .600/.500 machine gun cartridge) is dated October 1918 and No.676 (Holland and Holland 6mm or .240 Rimless) is February 1919. That gives a fairly close window to date it, and I would suspect it was more likely to be towards the end of that period.

It is a commercial round and once the war was over the ammunition companies began negotiations to consolidate into Explosive Trades Ltd. Eley produced a lot of automatic pistol drawings about this date, for example:

678 - 9mm Automatic
681 - .30 Mauser & Borchardt
683 - .45 Colt Automatic (200 grns)
684 - .45 Colt Automatic (230 grns)
689 - Proposed Automatic Pistol Cartridges for Explosives Trades Ltd. Committee (these were to become the BSA Belted cases)

The series seeems to end with No.762 (.450/.360) as I have never seen one later than that.