Indian .45 Auto Cartridges

I recently learned of the existence of .45 Auto cartridges made in India during the 1970’s. Does anyone have more information or an example in his collection? Regards, Fede.

Hmmmmm…for the life of me I can’t think what they would use them in, unless for export. There are some unknown and unheadstamped rounds that could possibly be ex-India, but nothing definite that I know of.

India did receive TSMGs in the early years of the Burma Campaign ( 1942) from Lend Lease sources ( British Army); These were rapidly replaced by Stens from about 1943 onwards, but the Guns were Never “obsoleted”, just passed on to other Units within India ( Police, etc). India Has a Policy of NOT actively promoting Defence Material export, except for Totally Obsolete Equipment, or Commonwealth “Gov’t to Gov’t” exchanges ( Australia got Tons of .303 ammo (K^F) in the 1970s, to use in its Battle Course Vickers Guns; in turn, Lithgow refurbed thousands of SMLEs and sent them to India (after the India-Pakistan War of 1971).

So the .45ACP production would have been small, by K^F (Khirkee Factory), or even the New, Olin Supplied, OFV plant (Ordnance Factory, Varanasi (Benares) which made Boxer 7,62 Nato M80 cartridges for the Indian Army L1A1-I. from the mid-70s.

I doubt if any enquiry to the Ordnance Board of India would get any Info, but one of the Indian Guns Web Pages might get a reply…with several million shooters, and enthusiasts, they have a flourishing “Gun Boards” type Web Forum.

Doc AV

I believe there are in existence relatively recent (1950s-1970s) Indian-made versions of the WW2 DeLisle carbine; a SMLE converted to .45 ACP, with a barrel about 12" long, using a regular Colt-type pistol magazine mounted in a wooden block where the SMLE magazine should go. A silencer is attached to the front of the barrel.

Write up on the De Lisle carbine:

Jon, so I would assume that none is known so far is western collections. If possible, can you post pictures of those unheadstamped rounds?

The cartridges I have seen were made at Kirkee and headstamped KF 75 45.

DocAV, the OFV factory is located in Varangaon.

Thanks everyone for the help.



The unheadstamped that look, how shall I say, look poorly / cheaply / not the best made that I’m aware of are Chinese. India’s 303’s have this same sort of “quality” appearance, for what ever that is worth. However both examples the 45 & 303 are post WW II & not as late as the 1970’s however the Indian 303’s from that era don’t appear much prettier that the earlier production.

Fede, I just meant that if the Indian rounds were unheadstamped, there were a number of unheadstamped .45s that could conceivably have been from India, not that I had any that I suspected of being Indian.
Any chance you can post pics of the Indian round?

We are not mistaking this for .455 auto cartridges by any chance? Very similar looking, in fact virtually identical except for flatter bullet profile. They confuse lots of people.
Long out of service in British Armed Forces by the 70s but India tended to get military hand me downs

I seem to recall at one point seeing a photograph of an Indian police officer with a Thompson submachine gun. The photo dated between the 1960s and 1980s. The Thompson was missing the stock and was very well worn. I’m trying to find it but it seems no luck.

Jon, the headstamp picture is very hard to read but the box speaks for itself!

Wonderful! Thanks.

Fede, Do you know what the I.A. no. is on the top of the carton?

Les, sorry, I don’t know or can read which is the number. Regards, Fede.

Label ID number. India follows British Practice ( which Uses a “H” Number for all its Containers, Labels etc used on Ammunition.).
India since Independence, uses “IA” (" India Ammunition") Numbers to catalogue all the Various Boxes, Cans, Cartons and Labels used in conjunction with Ammunition.
The “IA” number is also in the Same Label Position as the “H” number on a British or Australian Label.

Doc AV