Hunting 12.7x108 Russian


Our cartridge manufacturer LVE (from Novosibirsk) has developed and introduced on market hunting version of 12.7x108. As far as I know they were exported to US. Maybe somebody has seen them already? I’ve only empty box. Are they available on US market?


That is what I call overkill for a hunting round.


Depends on what you’re huntin’.


There would be zero hunting market for this round in the United States, Yuri. The FMJ bullet would make it illegal for hunting in most states, I think, despite the lead core projectile. I don’t know how many
MG shooters there are in states where they are legal - that is, if there would be sufficient demand to warrant an exportation to the United States. Since the cartridge is over .50" (caliber), I don’t know about the laws on importing that caliber. I have forgotten whether the limit is .50 or .60. IN my state this round would be illegal, and I believe there are other states with a “nothing about .50” law" as well.

Interesting, though, that the box is in English.


This is only slightly longer than a .50BMG (12.7x99mm NATO) and 12.7mm IS .50 caliber right?


Yes, it’s 50 caliber with a slightly longer case. So, it’s probably legal to import and , believe it or not, there are guys who hunt with the 50 BMG (not MGs but bolt action rifles). So, they’d probably see this as a bigger and better BMG.

Since CA has banned the 50 BMG it would be interesting to see if this cartridge would be legal there. AFAIK, they haven’t yet tried to ban similar cartridges like the DTC.



Box is in English because of cartridge was certificated for export purposes only. And this one was for US market and that is why I’m asking maybe somebody has seen them? And I’m wondering what kind of hunting/sport rifle was adopted for Russian 12.7?


I’ve never seen a 12.7x108 but you can find descriptions and photos on the Internet. It looks very much like a 50 BMG but the two are not interchangeable (which is why they would probably be legal in CA).

Yuri, I don’t know of anyone in the US who has chambered a rifle for the cartridge but you can bet that it’s either been done or someone is thinking of doing it. Any of the various 50 BMG rifles could be re-chambered.



More interesting to see that no manufacturer is given despite the fact that there is only one manufacturer which could have made these (LVE in Novosibirsk).

If the projectile has a lead core it must be remarkable shorter than those we know today which are all steel cored.

Might this be a bypass in exporting sniper ammunition to someone? (I know, I know, the Russian sniper cartridges have steel cores)


As far as I know this is completely civilian cartridge. Certified for export only. Visually no difference from 12.7 military expect head stamp.
Maybe somebody going to introduce sporting/hunting rifle for this cartridge and will re-export them to Middle East or somewhere else.



What is the headstamp on that commercial item from the box you show?

Here is a 12.7x108mm API (HS: 46 43) on the left next to a .50 BMG (12.7x99mm) API (HS: DM 45).

Does anyone know who “46” is?

The 12.7x108 here has a slightly larger diameter projectile (.512" dia.) than the .50 BMG (.510" dia.). I would doubt the people that make the laws regarding these things would know the difference between “caliber” as the designation vs. the diameter of the projectile, but if there is any legislation somewhere indicating .510 dia. of the .50 BMG is max., the Soviet round might bust out of that limitation.



What’s a thou or two between friends. Probably more difference than that in manufactruring tolerances or between factories.

I don’t know what the import laws are but I believe that CA specifically says 50 BMG and other States that have have restrictions simply say 50 Caliber.



I would not take the word “Hunting” too literally. There has been a lot of Russian made 5.45x39mm and 7.62x39mm lead core FMJ imported marked as “Made to Hunting Specifications” or “Hunting Cartridges” or “Hunting Rifle Ammunition” or “Sporting Rifle Ammuntion”. Obviously this ammunition is not “Hunting” ammunition, so one has to interpret the term to mean “not military issue” or “for civilian use” or something similar.

As for why and for who, I’d like to know myself!



I wqas wrong, it seems, about the 12.7 mm Russian round being larger diameter than the US .50. I thought they were about 51 or 52 caliber. So, the cartridge probably would be legal for importation, and the cartridge would also be legal in California. The .50 Browning cartridge is not illegal to own in California - only guns for it.
I don recall how specific the law on that was - that is, whether it referred to .50 caliber rifles, or to Caliber 50 US Browning MG rifles specifically. I wouldn’t test the law here by bringing one of the rifles, if they exist, into the state. I have a feeling this ammo must be meant for the MG shooters. I am surprised that the market would support an importation for that purpose, but live and learn. I guess those of us here, safe and sound from all the big, bad Machine guns, in the People’s Republik of Kalifonria don’t have much of an idea about how many MGS are being legally and safely fired in other states. Yes, safe and sound - only 100 or more murders in Oakland, right across the Bay from me, including four police officers, in the last year or so. But then, its been at least a couple of years since they had a riot over there, so live is good in the Bay Area.

Mexico has very strict gun control and I just saw something on the news about one of the Texas border towns, on the south side of the border, have something like 7,000 murders in the last year. Gun control is soooo effective.



Unless CA has amended the 50 BMG legislation, rifles for the cartridge are legal as long as they were grandfathered and registered. It’s only new rifles or the transfer of registered rifles that is prohibited. New shooters wishing to take up the big fifties can turn to cartridges like the DTC or any other cartridge that cannot be interchanged with the BMG. Friends of mine who did not want to register their rifles simply store them with friends in NV, AZ, CO, or NM. That’s where the matches are. But, bottom line - it’s a stupid law but one that will probably never be repealed.



As far as I remember it says: “LVE 12.7x108 10” Typical commercial head stamp.
Let’s wait when it will be advertised in US or somewhere else. I think somebody is going to preset rechambered rifle for Russian .50 or will present rechambering kit for this caliber.


46 is for : Ammunition Plant, Moscow-Kutsevo, then from 1941 Sverdlovsk, USSR


DaveE got in ahead of me but here are two genuine dummies, the one on the left east german I think. The one on the right has a headstamp of F A 4.




I knew the guns were grandfathered if they were registered. Since they cannot be transferred, even by will at death, the end result is the same - total prohibition. There are the same rifles now in better calibers, it seems, but I would guess, now that we have returned the progressives to power in California, unlike most states, that it won’t be long before they get to those also.It is too bad that there is no way to cut and paste the Western Coast of the US and put it next to the Northeast coast, and then form two different countries.

Edited fpr spelling only.



I have several very good friends in CA who shoot 50 caliber. When the .50 BMG law was passed I talked to them about what they would do when all 50s were banned and their registered BMGs were confiscated. I think that living in CA has turned them into defeatists because their general reaction was, “Oh well, if that’s what it comes to, what can we do about it? We’ll register our rifles for now, and enjoy them while we can.” Now that Jerry Brown has returned to the throne, the day may not be far off.

I suggested that they build .49 BMGs, and then .48 BMGs and then . . . Not even CA has the cajones to ban everything. Although I see where San Fransicko has banned toys that McDonald’s gives away with certain kid’s meals.