ID: 5.56x45 linked for HK23 with lot "HK"

I have found this image in the web and would like to hear if one knows the exact background of the ammo lot being designated as “HK” as this should indicate the company Huck of Nuremberg (which made only blanks to what I understood). Or is this a delibrity Heckler & Koch took, made a functional lot (without stating) and used it’s “self proclaimed” factory code “HK” (normally being Huck) outside of the German military system (as this box and ammo were not adopted by the Bundeswehr and so isn’t the HK23 - at least not officially).

Are the headstamps known?

Opinions or reliable info?

My read of the box seems it is for the HK23 gun & was packaged 6-89 by H&K for that reason.
Empty, but I think another somewhat similar?

Hi Alex,

This is a Heckler & Koch contract for the United Arab Emirates and consist of repacked Olin cartridges headstamped “W C C 8 8” (Ball M855) and “W C C 8 7” (Tracer M856). I know this ammo well because in the 1990’s it was the first of its kind to be imported into Argentina in large quatities. I don’t know who was the source, but it came from a US retailer.

This German company is known to have used the “HK” lot identifier in other ammunition as well, for example: 4.6x36 boxes and 40x46SR rounds. I agree it is unusual, because Huck used the same initials in 7.62x51 blanks until the late 1990’s.



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I should add that some of these HK lots also came with M855 cartridges headstamped “W C C 8 8” and M856 tracers headstamped “⨁ LC 88”.

Fede, thanks a lot!
This is exactly what explains it as it would not be Heckler & Koch (H&K) withing the German NATO military coding system.

Those 4.6x36 and 40x46SR were also a H&K “self proclaimed” commercial code they been using even in commercial pamphlets (advertizing DAG made 40x46SR).
This happens when the most obvious abbreviation is the code of someone else (here of Huck).
And when a manufacturer like H&K is pretending to be an ammunition manufacturer.

I wonder if they ever realized how confusing they were.
If they are smart they have registered “HK” as their own code after Huck was gone. But knowing people my bet would be against them.

Another possible explanation is that this ammunition was packed in the US, probably by/for the Heckler & Koch, Inc. branch in Virginia, that back then was offering the HK23E machine gun (variant purchased by UAE).

Yes, that could be another factor.

The Prescott box was given to me from a gun designer who at the time worked for Heckler & Koch, (& now lives near by), when they were testing or demonstrating the gun at Gunsite. (just north of here). I think he might have more cans?