German 30 x 91 Mk 212


#1

The attached picture show 3 German 30 x 91 Mk 212 rounds. The HE round on the left has two white(ish) lines around the projectile, what do these signify? The middle round is made from wood which has been painted, it came from an immaculate source (the late and sorely missed Peter Labbett’s collection) my question is did the Germans ever make wooden dummy’s and if not does anyone have any idea where it might have come from. For information the case on the right is a ‘case hardened steel for gauges’

Thanks in advance.

Buster


#2

The significance of the 2 white bands is unknown as this is experimental ammunition where basically all markings were for internal use only. (as they are still today)

I have never seen all-wooden dummies in the German ordnance sphere.

The “gauge” is to be treated with care as there are detailed factory drawings available. Also German gauges were not blued.


#3

Ian, the drawing mentioned by EOD is DWM Lübeck No. D212.1.4.L1 of 1941 and the cartridge is designated “Stahlpatrone 212”.


#4

Hi EOD and Fede thanks for your replies as always. Fede I have the drawing you mention but, due to too much red wine, put in the details under ‘material’ in my message and not the correct name Stahlpatrone’ thanks for pointing it out. I have enclosed a picture of a German 3.4cm Stahlpatrone also ‘blued‘ which came from Freddy Mead’s collection. Many years ago both Peter Labbett and Freddy Mead seemed to have access to Woolwhich and the research facility at Fort Halstead. I wonder if the rounds were recovered as part of the BIOS and CIOS ( British or Combined Objectives Sub Committee) programs and were later blued them to preserve them? I am still intrigued by the wooden dummy and would welcome any other views?

Ian


#5

Ian,

Are there any markings on the Stahlpatrone.
I know that the late W vd Eng made some of these in the 70`s everything he made
was from a high quality but always stamped with ( enr or er )

Regards 451kr.


#6

Leon

I have thoroughly examined the rounds and there are no markings at all.


#7

For the record, my example shown here has a replica case (no markings of any kind) with what I believe is a genuine projectile.

Incidentally, the 30x110B case next to it is also a replica of an experimental WW2 German round, but I don’t know what - can anyone help?


#8

These steel dummies could be British manufacture. They may have been used to study the gun function of the German weapons.

I have some British made 9mm dummies that have German cases, most loaded with 38 Webley bullets. I got them from Herb Woodend who had the same kind of access as Freddie and Peter. Herb got them from an old engineer at Woolwich who was part of the original testing and design of the Sten. Based on the sources of these two 30mm solid steel items, they could be British.

Cheers,
Lew


#9

Lew, I have no answer to the initial question but both calibers shown were obsolete already long before the war ended. The 30mm MK212 was the competitor to the MK108 which won the tender with flying colors.
I would be surprised if these weapons were still available by 1945 and then be evaluated/tested ignoring the reports the allies had seized too (describing the drawbacks of the MK212).
The “non relic” cartridges for the MK212 we know of were in the famous “Mauser train” which was seized by the French. All others were found long after the war (1970s-1980s) at the DWM facility in Lübeck (Schlutup).
The 34mm round is basically undocumented except for a few existing cases and even fewer projectiles. So far no reports for these weapon have been found nor does anybody know how the gun looked like and what the development background was.


#10

In my opinion these steel cartridges are most likely replicas made for reference using original German drawings. Peter was aware of these developments and evidently had copies of both drawings for the 30 mm MK 212 and the 34 mm Type 7-70. However, he never mentioned any British tests or the existence of these steel cartridges.


#11

Fede, just to be clear the left hand round in the first picture came from Peter Labbett. The two steel dummies both came from the Freddy Mead collection. Freddy I know worked at Woolwhich and was, I think, there when it was closing. He may have liberated the dummies then, but I do not know for certain. I feel sure both are original.

Best

Ian


#12

I decided that I needed to preserve the 2 x Stalpatrone because as you can see in the first pictures there are many spots of rust showing through the ‘blueing’ . Twenty years ago on advice from one of the best Imperial War Museums restorers I started using a conservation liquid called BIOX. This removes rust, tarnish and verdigris, but has no effect on existing paintwork or other markings. As it says on the bottle it is ‘A biological corrosion remover which is completely harmless to man containing no strong acids or alkalis. Designed for the treatment of iron, steel, copper, brass and aluminum’ . I have used it successfully on many items over the years with nothing but good results. I placed the two Stalpatrone in a bath of BIOX and left them to soak for about 30 minutes. On my return I was horrified to discover that the ‘blueing’, if that is what it was, had simply vanished leaving the steel and the rust spots. As it was too late to salvage the rounds in the condition they went into the BIOX I left them until the rust had also been removed.

A lesson indeed as I normally try and preserve any specimens I have in the condition I receive them.

I attach a picture to show the rounds now.


#13

Ian, can you show pictures of the base and tip of these cartridges?


#14

Fede, as requested, as I am sure you know the 34mm has a solid tip to the projectile.


#15

Ian, thanks a lot for the pictures. The base cavity of the 30 mm round doesn’t correspond to the drawing of the Stahlpatrone 212 given that its outside diameter should be about 13.5-14 mm. Also, the shape of the nose cavity doesn’t looks correct for this cartridge.

It is not my intention to offend you with my opinion, but I can’t find no reason to believe that these are original German cartridges, or manufacturing variations of the same. If these were made for Birtish tests or they are simply collectors’ replicas I don’t know for sure, but due to lack of documentation I’ll keep with this last possibility.


#16

Fede, Thank you very much for all your input. Freddy Mead had some wonderful items in his collection including a MK III .303 which sadly I could not afford to buy. I never thought that the ‘Stalpatrone’ were anything but genuine, but it looks as if this is not the case. I wish Freddy was around now to explain where they came from and maybe why they were made. Sadly now I don’t think we will never know their history or that of the wooden dummy. Still they are nice items to keep. Ian