Fake German Tool Dummies!

I hope you can all open this forum. The posting was about a number of faked WWII German 7.92 and 9mm tool cartridges. If you can’t open it I’ll try to post in another form.
gunboards.com/forums/forum_p … TID=242132

Thanks Jon. These are such BAD fakes that they give fakers a bad name.

Yes, these have been also discussed in the German language forum “wk2ammo”: … 7bbb42d6ee

These are made of aluminum and have phantasy markings on them which never existed in this configuration.

Needless to say that a tool cartridge will never be made of aluminum.

I agree with EOD that tool cartridges used to function in guns during manufacture (particularly chamber gauges) are steel, in my experience. The markings on the 9mm aluminum dummy iare consistant with items developed at Steyr during the original development of the tooling for the MP38/MP40 and subsequently transferred to the D-S owned factory that produced MP38 & MP40 magazines, and accepted there by the German inspector. A major objection to the 9mmP when it showed up was the 39 date and the relationship to the other markings.

I have not looked at the markings on the 7.92 tools and have no opinion.

Are they legit??? I can’t confirm that. Are they fake? I’m not prepared to say that yet. I am interested in the logic for them being fake. I have seen too many things in the manufacturing process and in ammo production to label them fake just because they don’t follow the pattern of the chamber gauges. Having said that, I could well be wrong and am seeking more information.

The first posting I saw about them was in relation to auction sales. The cartridge prices often seen on the various auction sites are outrageously high. If auctions are the primary outlet for these rounds, I would guess the motive is clear.

Jon, The original auction price on the German ebay was one euro. They were bid to considerably higher prices. Some of the buyers have put them on US auction sites.

The repeated use of the word “THEM” in these posts implies that there are many specimens. This is an implication of fakes as well. These kinds of tools do not turn up in these numbers in usual commerce.

There is no question in my mind, or in that of experts in Germany on their own ammunition, that these rounds are faked. Lew and I have had a big discussion about them already. One of the primary errors in their production, seemingly “corrected” on those horrible looking 7.9s that would more likely come out of a workshop in some small village in North Africa than from a Germany factory, is that the code on the 9mms did not exist concurrent with the date.

Looking at either the 9mm or the 7.9s, regardless of the date, the workmanship, especially in regard to marking these rounds, would be crude by 1945 standards in Germany. However, seemingly “produced” in 1928 and 1942 respectively, standards were still high as Germany was still in a winner’s position in those years. I only have to compare my 1941-produced P-08 and my 1942-produced K98k against specimens of the so-called “Volksturmwaffen” to see that. Real gauges that I have from that period are of hardened steel of such quality that on one, the Germans attemped to polish off the markings to remark it (for whatever reason) and failed, finally cutting a big “X” through the etched markings and etching the new markings in another place. The are of the highest quality.

No argument about production methods, intended use of these dummies as if they were original, etc. stands up in my own mind, and frankly, nothing will ever convince me that they are not fakes. I am not an engineer, have little knowledge about the production of tools of any type, and so on, but sometimes the simple experience of observation of a lot of German military items of the period of the Third Reich, from guns, to equipment, to daggers, to gauges, to vehicles, to uniforms, etc. ad nauseum, tell you things overlooked in discussions of manufacturing theory. Let’s call it a “gut feeling” for lack of any other words, in my limited vocabulary, anyway.

To me, these aren’t even “good fakes.”

100% agreement.

What about this seller’s fired “proof” cases in 7,9x57mm and the Nahpatrone box? Seems to me that these items are also quite scarce and should have opened with a much higher price.


I didn’t see the Nahpatrone box (don’t even know which caliber 7.9 or 9mm)?
It would be hard to evaluate the label without having it in hand. These days, labels can be copied so easily on various types of paper with color copiers. I am not claiming the label in question was spurious - I never saw it.

Unless it is some unknown headstamp, German 7.9 proofs are, surprisingly, not rare. I would call them scarce - you don’t find them on gun store shelves! However, they do show up, and don’t command the price of some other 7.9 x 57 exotica, or least I never had to pay any big price for them, and I have quite a few. Fired cases further diminish the interest. Probably only a lot number collector who doesn’t have that lot number or headstamp would be interested in them. The guy who only collects types - not every headstamp and lot number - I would not think would be interested, since proofs are obtainable live and in good shape with a little correspondence or attendence at big show.

Just my opinion. I have not actively been collecting 7.9 for about three years now, so maybe things have changed.

John and I have a significant disagreement on this dummy. When I first saw it on the German Ebay the “39” date and the “bnz” code were a big red flag. The other is that WaA815 was at Steyr-Daimler-Puch in Graz, Austria and bnz which was the SDP plant at Steyr. As I dug into available information, bnz was a very early producer of the MP40. In fact, they produced it so early that it is very likely that they were tooling for the MP38 when the MP40 came on the scene as a replacement. Most companies that I’m familiar with would develop the tooling before they broke out production to other facilities. SDP in Graz produced both MP38 and MP40 mags and was one of the big producers of these mags.

When I first saw a photo of these dummys they looked like a magazine test/tool item to me. There were apparently 36 of them that turned up in the storeroom of a gunsmith/dealer that went out of business some years ago in Austria. Two individuals sold off the guns some years ago and reportedly split up the stuff in the storeroom and these dummys were part of it, along with eight 7.65mmP brass dummys with no markings found in a Luger magazine. The aluminum dummys were cleaned (mine have black residue in the groove).

I think they were tools used in the original development of the MP38 & MP40 magazine tooling at Steyr, and were marked P08 39 (when they were produced). Magazine production was then sent to Graz and the tooling developed at Steyr was transferred (Graz made aftrib and slab sided MP38 mags in 1940 and thereafter MP40 mags). In late 1940 the bnz code was assigned (shows up on a few 1940 marked MP40s) and the code list baa-bzz was issued in Feb 1941. I suspect that sometime after the bnz code was assigned the German acceptance organization at Graz got around to approving all the tooling at Graz and these dummys were marked by WaA815 at Graz and also marked with the manufacturer of the tools, bnz. This is not inconsistent with military manufacturing processes in the US over the past 40 years as they are set up for production.

As magazine tool items, it didn’t matter that there were raised areas where they were marked. That would only be significant if they were chamber gauges. The ones I have all have marks consistent with being in a magazine, but only a few times at most. They were clearly not part of any recurring inspection on the magazines. They were more likely used for setup of a production line of magazines.

One of the things that makes me believe they are legit is that WaA 815 is a very obscure marking. Fake WaA’s from the better known factories are well known in the gun world. I have seen a CZ75 with a WaA!!! A gun dealer keeps it on his table as a warning. Anyone who was going to fake an aluminum dummy who knew enough to bother with markings would not have combined a 39 date with WaA 815 and bnz. I think it is legit. The seller put it up for one Euro and the actual sales price was the result of bidder interest which does not indicate the seller had great expectations for it with a high starting price.

This is speculation based on some internet research I have done on MP40 production and the associated magazine production, but it holds together in a logical context and is consistent with my experience with military production programs.

Trying to equate this with a chamber gauge will lead a person down the wrong path. I have one in my collection and I bought a few others because I’m confident of them. The truth is that the argument against them is a bit simple with assumptions that are not consistent with the way I have seen companies actually work. Collectors like much cleaner stories than this, but the real world doesn’t product clean stories in my experience.

Could I be wrong, of course, as could the people who are convinced it is a fake. What is the stories on the 7.92s—I have no idea because I have not researched them.

I have other test rounds in my collection for testing packaging machines, for and other uses that have nothing to do with chamber gauges. I have a very interesting 30mm dummy built for testing the A-10 feed system with a new projectile shape. Unless you knew the story (and I have the ammo can where the 20 test rounds were delivered) it would also look like a fake!

My thoughts, but I am comfortable with the items! On the other hand, new information may change my mind! My conclusions are based on supposition, but as far as I know, so are the conclusions of those who think these are fakes. If there are hard facts instead of suppositions, I’d be the first to be interested in hearing them.

This is sure a fun hobby!!! Cheers, Lew

I spent an hour this morning chasing the information on the two 7.92 dummys that John provided links to on his first post. The markings are 42 WaA815 K98 ag.

The date and the WaA for the SDP plant at Graz made me speculate that Graz may have made magazines for the FG42 assault rifle which is chambered for 7.92x57mm, but I drew a blank. I could not find anything on the internet related to the manufacturer codes or the WaA on the FG42 magazines. Does anyone have an idea where to look. I understand there is a great book on the FG42, but I don’t have it. I also cannot find anything on the internet that ties the FG42 or anything else in 7.92x57mm to the Graz factory. This plant did make mags for the MP43 in 7.92x33mm, but nothing that I can find in 7.92x57mm. The code on these dummys (ag) is a metal fabrication shop (d. Herr, Aug., Metallwarenfabrik u.galv. Asstalt, Troisdorf, Frandfurter Str.103).

I do have two gauges that I bought for little or nothing from the guy with the dummys

WaA40 is not identified anywhere I can find and WaA44 is shown in two locations on the internet lists. Merz-Werk, Gebr. Merz, Frankfurt a.M.-R. (cos) apparently had significant role in the manufacture of MP43s based on an internet listing of SNs (claus.espeholt.dk/mediearkiv/M44_c.pdf)!!!

Again, any information, particularly FG42 mags is welcome, regardless of whether it supports my suppositions or not.

Here are the images of the three dummies in question:

The correct Waffenamt number for Merzwerke is WaAA44, not WaA44. Close but no cigar. JG

Are there any other ALUMINUM tools or gauges from the era ?

The stamping on those 7.9 dummies looks like it was done in Darra, the gunmaking center of Pakistan. Come to think of it, they would have done a better job. this is cruder work supposedly done in 1942 than that which appears on the Volksturm weapons.

Interesting!!! I had not looked for that. My comment that there were two outfits listed as WaA44 referred to:
Auto-Union A.G., R

Yes, the Swiss made an Aluminum drill cartridge during WW2. Similar drills were also made in brass and steel at other times. That is the only one I know of.

I don’t think an aluminum drill cartridge is very durable. For a tool that is only intended for very limited use, like setting up a production line then aluminum seems a reasonable alternative.

I am afraid that this wonderful German gauges are just…bullshit…


Would box or magazine maker dummies be so copiously marked? I would doubt it.