Factory bullet base marks

Does anybody know if there is a listing of factory bullet base marks, similar to case headstamp lists.


Gourd - have never seen one. Some base markings of specific cartridges are covered in some books on particular field they occur in. Why don’t you start compiling one.

I have some I have found on 9mm rounds, etc. Give me a call or an email if you are interested, and will will try to start you off.

It is an interesting field, probably not covered well because many people don’t want to tear the cartridges apart looking for these marks.

There have been a few marked on the nose of the bullet now, by the way. Federal has marked some of their rounds with a “F” on the nose, and Winchester with a “W”.

John Moss

Gourd–The list should probably be enlarged to include all letters or numbers or symbols on both the base and exterior of SMALL ARMS bullets (Not to include large caliber markings), such as the “W” on the side of Winchester bullets from the early 1900’s.

As John suggested, if you have the interest, nobody better to do a list than yourself. If you wait for someone else to compile it, it may never get done. It would make a nice article for the IAA Journal.

Gourd…on 220 grain RN FMJ bullets in .30 Army, you will find raised US in lead at base of bullet on USCCo cartridges, and raised W in lead at base of bullet on WRACo cartridges;…I also have a .30-06 Model 1906 bullet with raised C at base of bullet…and, of course, you will find WRACo bullets marked with W just above case cannelure, and USCCo bullets marked with S…Randy

And then there’s the ever-popular 8m/m Lebel balle M loading with a letter stamped on the flat of the bullet nose. JG

…and the base markings on British .303 bullets.



Since you are going to be doing this project anyway, why not add primers with their stamped letters and/or numbers, and the few cartridge cases similarly stamped (not headstamps). Not the same animal but similar and would add more interest to the article.


Regarding the case stamps, are you referring to the small letters (G, S, L, etc) that are sometimes found stamped into the necks of .22 rimfires made by REM-UMC?


Yes, that’s what I meant. I’ve not seen many different ones and, being so few, they may not warrant a discussion on their own. Do you know of more than the few seen on the 22 RF??


The following casemouth letters were used on .22 RF:

G = Greased
S- = Smokeless
L = Lesmoke

  • = Unknown
    U = Ungreased

As to other bullet base marks there are the DWM numbers, and the Shanghi Police had the base marked on the contract rounds made by Winchester - Western (a symbol). Also 8mm Lebel boattail bullets have a very large number of base marks, by not only the U.S. makers but the French makers.
As to the rimfire casemouth stamps there are combinations, such as S-.

I don