Mexican 7x57s?

I have a few similar “Country” 7mms that I believe were all made in Mexico. I have COLOMBIA, MEXICO, and just got HONDURAS. I know of (and need!) PERU and BOLIVIA also. Does anyone know of any others in the series?

Some years ago, I did heavy research into Mexican metallic center-fire cartridge headstamps in preparation for any article. I thought I might record 20 or 30 different, including all calibers. I ended up with about 200 and way too much information for any article. All of the ones you show WERE MADE IN MEXICO. In fact, I had never recorded “COLOMBIA” so will add it to the card file. I drew every headstamp and every headstamp was confirmed. Nothing was drawn based on “I think I saw…” or “I am pretty sure this exists.”

I kept the drawings and my notes, of course. Each headstamp is drawn on a 3 x 5 card. All this was down before digital cameras. I am sure there are lots of headstamps made after my work that I don’t have, but at this stage, I will never do anything with the information except answer the occasional question.

By the way, I know of no others except with standard Mexican factory designators in place of the country names, from the ones you listed.

Thanks, John. I will keep my eyes and ears open for the PERU and BOLIVIA examples.

Jonny, these are very interesting headstamps and I wish you good luck finding your missing examples. I always wondered about the real history behind these cartridges and for which purpose they were actually produced by Mexico. Some facts are very intriguing, for example: Perú and Bolivia never adopted a 7 mm Mauser rifle; Bolivia was at war with Paraguay during 1932-1935 and it is not documented any support by Mexico; Perú and Colombia were at war during 1932-33 and Mexico was supporting both??

This is just a guess made before doing any actual research but I wonder if these were made for a shooting competition celebrated in Mexico during 1933 where the ammunition and rifles were provided by the country organizer.

Well, to confuse the issue a bit, the HONDURAS has a round-nosed CN bullet and a 1933 date, the MEXICO is also a CN-RN bullet but with a 1931 date, and the COLOMBIA is an undated wood-bullet blank with 7 m/m at 6:00. I also have a similar 1933 ball round with F.N.C. MEXICO at 12:00.

Jonny, in my opinion the COLOMBIA 7 m/m headstamp doesn’t belong to the Mexican “country” series but it is avery interesting and hard to find cartridge anyway. The Mexican 7 mm rounds from the early 1930’s also exists in several variations: 7 MEXICO m/m 1930, 7 F.N.C. m/m 1930, 7 MEXICO m/m 1931, 7 F.N.C. MEXICO m/m 1931, 7 F.N.C. MEXICO m/m 1932, 7 F.N.C. MEXICO m/m 1933, 7 F.N.C. MEXICO m/m 1934 and 7 F.N.C. MEXICO m/m 1935.

Can someone please post a good picture of the “Colombia” headstamp. If I am going to consider adding it to the file of Mexican metallic CF cartridge headstamps, which eventually someone else will get, I need to insure the exact comtent and layout of the headstamp is correct, and also that it is Mexican-manufacture.

Thank you.

I would love to, John, but mine is unfortunately packed away, awaiting our eventual house move.
In my log I actually have it noted as possibly Colombian. Here is my full description:
Blank, round-nosed brown wood bullet, heavy cs mth crimp, brs cs and pr, green pr seal; COLOMBIA 7m/m

I agree with Fede in that I don’t think, from that description, that your COLOMBIA blank is Mexican, Jon. If so, it is probably much later than the early 1930s series. I have no opinion on Fede’s comments about the various South American conflicts. I am pretty ignorant on that subject. I do know that the politics of wars like the Green Chaco War were more complex than meets the eye of the casula student on the subject. Very much like the Spanish Civil War in that respect. I am going to leave it out of my “Mexico” notes unless someone can prove with a box label or other documentation that it is of Mexican origin.

I have this one listed as being made by Tallares Centrales de Ejercito, Bogota.
It is different than those made by FNC, unless there is another variation you are talking about?

Could be. I will post a pic of it when I can. I hope someone else has one.

Wow…that was freaky!!!

I think that the “COLOMBIA 7 m/m” headstamp is a WCC product of the 1950’s but I can’t find the source of this information. Maybe it was just visual comparision because it looks identical to the “WESTERN 7 m/m” headstamp.

Fede: Were all 1935 date Mexican 7 m/m cartridges made by F.N.C. and all 1936 and later rounds made by F de M? Jack

Jack, the earliest rounds that I’m aware by “Fábrica de Municiones” are headstamped 7 F. DE M. m/m 1936 (7x57 Mauser) and - F DE M - 13.2 m/m 1936 (13.2x99 Hotchkiss).

Fede - that is my record also, with the last use of F. M. (without the “de” being in 1951). There are many calibers, and headstamps within other caliber groups that are not dated on the headstamp. I think the earliest headstamp I chronicled was “F.H.A.” from 1886, on .43 Spanish and a .50 Carbine blank. Oddly, FNA was used again, date unknown but much later, on a .30-06 cartridge with headstamp * FNA * SOBRE PRESION (Over Pressure).

Fede: Thanks for the confirmation; I’d more or less assumed F de M began with 1936 but wasn’t certain. Jack

John, I don’t know when the original “Fábrica Nacional de Armas” was established but a document mentions that it wasn’t yet finished by 1884. The Remington cartridges of 1886 must be their first production. The modern “Fábrica Nacional de Armas” was established in 1902 in Santa Cruz, Atizapán, State of Mexico, under the direction of Manuel Mondragón. Those rare high pressure test .30-06 cartridges were made by FNM for this factory to test Model 1954 short rifles made there.

The “Fábrica Nacional de Cartuchos” was established in 1906 in Santa Fé, Distrito Federal, under the direction of Enrique Mondragón. Despite headstamps “F. de M.” and “F M” were used for different calibers between 1936 and 1951, and then replaced by FNM, they both represented a short version for “Fábrica Nacional de Municiones”. Another designation of contemporary use was “Fábrica N. de Municiones”.

Although I can’t confirm when or where the “COLOMBIA 7 m/m” round was made, the Mauser ammunition making machinery bought by Colombia came directly from Western Cartridge Company and was settled up in 1922.

I just realized that I forgot to keep in mind the Mexican .45 Auto production which exist with F.N.C.-45-MEXICO 1936 headstamp (and F.N.C.-45-MEXICO 1938 as reported by Butch Daubner to exist only in Mr. Moss’ collection. John, Can you confirm this?). This means that F.N.C. overlaps with F. de M., at least in .45 Auto.

While reading some documents on Mexican ammunition I noticed that there were two different “Fábrica Nacional de Cartuchos” designated “Number 1” (Número 1) and “Number 2” (Número 2). The first factory was modernized in 1926 with new German machinery and the second was closed in the following period. I also found some interesting reports with details of early Mexican 7.62x54R, .30-30 and 8x57 production:

Report dated September 1, 1924 (period between mid-1923 to mid-1924):
"After a short experimentation period production of 8 mm ammunition was finally started"
1,225,000 rounds produced by factory number 2

Report dated September 1, 1925 (period between mid-1924 to mid-1925)::
.30-30: 769,000 rounds produced by factory number 1
8x57: 485,000 rounds produced by factory number 2
7.62x54R: 3,000,000 rounds produced by factory number 2

Report dated September 1, 1926 (period between mid-1925 to mid-1926):
7.62x54R: 3,245,200 rounds produced by factory number 2

A related thread: