Fun Quiz

As most of you know, the early UMC boxes had round corners instead of square as used by most other cartridges companies. I found a statement as to why in an old UMC catalog. The quiz question is “WHY”. There is no prize, just a “Test Your Knowledge” question. BTW, I have been collecting ammunition since 1958 and collected .22 boxes extensively from 1970-1990 and never knew this until I read it in this catalog a week ago.

The answer will be posted Monday, unless someone comes up with the correct answer.

Since you didn’t say only one guess per response, I’ll try the shotgun approach:

They slip in and out of a pocket easier.

Or, considering that these boxes have the sunken panels on the top and botton and rounded edges as well, perhaps it had to do with making the tops and bottoms easier to remove from the box forming dies.

Or, perhaps because the round cornered UMC boxes looked classier than the competitors square cornered boxes, it was thought that they might give the potential buyer the impression that the ammunition was also better.

Or, there was less chance of the box splitting open at the corners if it was dropped or mishandled. And, bless those forward thinking UMC box engineers, we cartridge box collectors wouldn’t have to be so worried about dropping one of the round cornered boxes because the corners are essentially already crushed.

Have I gotten warm with any of these???

One of Guy’s answers was on the right track. UMC considered a round-corner box to be stronger than one with square corners. One of the things that would make it stronger is that the round corner would conform to the shape of the cartridge in that corner, therefore not leaving an empty void there.

They also considered the boxes friendlier to handle, I suppose because there were no sharp corners to poke your hand while you were holding the box.

Well, how did I do?

John wrote:

And they were right, which would explain why there are so many of those round cornered UMC and REM-UMC boxes around.


Here is the quote from the 1905 U.M.C. Catalog.

“NOTE: U.M.C. Metallic Cartridges are packed in round cornered boxes. This form of box is stronger and more convenient to handle.”