For Sale: Finnish Military Cartridges 1945-75 (printed book)

This is a book about military small arms ammunition used by the Finnish Defense Forces between the years 1945 and 1975. Because the subject is quite large we decided to narrow it down to centerfire calibers 5.6 to 9.00 mm. So, the heavy machine gun calibers (12.7 and 14.5 mm) were left out from this work but will be covered in our next book, Finnish military cartridges 1975 to the present, projected to be published in a few years time. On the other hand, this book covers the genesis of Soviet 7.62x39 cartridge and it also introduces different Soviet military loadings developed in this caliber, including even the ones not used by the Finnish Defense Forces, and also after the year 1975. So, the year range of this book is somewhat flexible at certain points.

Besides the information on cartridges, there is also a short history of small arms ammunition production in Finland 1945 to 1975 in this book including factory histories of the Lapua Cartridge Factory in Lapua, the Oy Sako Ab company in Riihimäki and Vihtavuori Powder Mill in Laukaa. There are also many pages about the adoption of 7.62x39 caliber in Finland. Most of the book is dedicated to the three major post-war calibers in Finland, namely 7.62 mm rifle cartridge (7.62x54R), 7.62 mm assault rifle cartridge (7.62x39) and 9 mm pistol cartridge (9x19). Before the Soviet 7.62 mm assault rifle cartridge and weapons chambered for it were fully deployed by the early 1970s, Finland was still armed with Word War II -vintage rifles, machine guns and sub-machine guns. Also the great majority of stockpiled small arms ammunition was manufactured before or during the war. These more or less obsolete cartridges stayed in service surprisingly long though most were sold abroad or scrapped by the late 1960s. These obsolete cartridges, however, are not covered in this book. Details of these can be found in our previous publications about Finnish military cartridges 1918 to 1945. In addition to strictly military ammunition, also sporting ammunition used by the Finnish Defense Forces (e.g. .32 S&W Long and .38 S&W Special) have been included in this work.

This book has a lot of images of cartridges and their boxes, and most of the images are in full color. The cartridges have mostly been drawn on a computer and the boxes scanned from multiple sides. In addition there are many photographs as well as factory drawings or blueprints, found in the archives, in this book. There are lots of English summaries in this book, and this time it was decided to provide a summary after each subchapter not only after the main chapters. However, it was impossible to cover each subject thoroughly in English summaries, so emphasis is on the essentials. In addition to summaries, every image has a full-length English caption. This should make this publication most informative for non-Finnish readers too.

There are 226 pages (A4 size) of which about 2/3 in full color, 350 images in total of which 250 in full color. Soft cover with laminate finish to make the book more durable. High-quality glossy paper.

Unfortunately, there is no e-book available at the moment.

Price is now 54 Euros (normally 57 Euros) plus shipping. To Germany, the Netherlands and most other EU countries it’s EUR 22.90 for one to five books. To the UK it’s EUR 29.00 for a book / EUR 38.00 for four books. Shipping is expensive, so it’s advisable to order a few books at a time. For European customers pre-payment with IBAN.

For US customers, please contact me for the price in USD and shipping. At the moment shipping to the USA is ridicilously expensive… I don’t have a nerve to mention it here…

Contact information (email): pitkanen.mika(youknowwhat)



Production of small arms ammunition in Finland 1945-75 6
Lapua cartridge factory in post-war era 12
Oy Sako Ab after the war 22
Vihtavuori powder mill 1945-75 31

Post-war 7.62x54R cartridges in Finnish service 34
Lapua-made 7.62x54R ball ammunition 36
Soviet post-war 7.62x54R cartridges in Finland 49
7.62x54R Short-range cartridges 54
7.62x54R Blank ammunition 59
7.62x54R Dummy cartridges 70
7.62x54R High-pressure test cartridges 73
7.62x54R Barrel erosion test cartridge 75

Adoption of 7.62x39 in Finland 76

Foreign-made 7.62x39 in Finland 88
Genesis of 7.62x39 cartridge 88
Soviet 7.62 mm cartridges Model of 1943 92
Imported 7.62x39 cartridges 102

Finnish-made 7.62x39 ammunition 108
7.62x39 Ball ammunition 108
7.62x39 Tracer cartridges 127
7.62x39 Short range cartridges 133
7.62x39 Blank cartridges 138
7.62x39 Dummy cartridges 146
7.62x39 High pressure test cartridges 150
7.62x39 Propulsion cartridge 153
7.62x39 Barrel erosion test cartridge 155

Sako’s .223/5.56 mm military ammunition 156
.223 Remington cartridges 156
Experimental 5.7x39 mm assault rifle cartridge 163
Experimental 5.7x33 mm Swedish SMG cartridge 166

Post-war 9 mm ammunition 168
9 mm Ball ammunition manufactured in Finland 168
9 mm Ball ammunition bought from Interarmco 181
9 mm Tracer ammunition 185
9 mm Blank ammunition 190
Other 9 mm ammunition 200

Other post-war pistol ammunition 203
7.65 mm Parabellum 203
.32 ACP 214
.38 Smith & Wesson Special 216
.32 Smith & Wesson Long 220

I have less than twenty copies left and there will not be another print. So, if you still are interested in this book, please be advised. It’s soon gone forever…

Will there be an e book version like the other titles?

Unfortunately there is no e-book version of this book available at the moment. Whether or not there will be one in the future, well, we’ll see…

I would buy one if there was an e book.