More on Western cartridges and the Spanish Civil War


Here is a photo taken from a 1938 book. These are Western cartridges in 8 mm Lebel captured by the Nationalists in the northern front (Santander).

According to the Recovery Manual cited elsewhere in this forum, the headstamp should be (WESTERN 1916). The bullet should be similar to the french “D” bullet, solid GM. And the bullet would have a marking at its base: U8, the 8 being inside the U.

Is this information correct, or else what kind of bullet the Western Lebel cartridge had?


The marking " WESTERN 1916 " does not seem to exist, to see the site 8mm Lebel: … Itemid=211
For some markings of the base of the bullet see the site:

:-) p-j


[quote=“pierrejean”]The marking " WESTERN 1916 " does not seem to exist, to see the site 8mm Lebel: … ctionid=6& p-j[/quote]

Well, I don’t think that one particular headstamp does not exist just because it doesn’t appear in a particular webpage.

According to that webpage, the 2-piece box for 20 cartridges shown in my photo doesn’t exist either…

The recovery manual shows two more headstamps in this caliber and manufacturer, both with solid GM bullet:

WESTERN 1918 with red primer seal, and the same with purple primer seal.

By the way, the webpage confirms that US production in that caliber had solid gilding metal bullets.


Just another Western headstamp found in Spain, according to the Manual:



For some markings of the base of the bullet see the site: A+ :-) p-j

It seems that the correct marking is UB, with the B inside the U.

Now I wonder who this UB manufacturer is. These bullets came in Western and Remington cartridges.


Headstamps base bullet (case missing)

Headstamps base bullet (case R.H.A.CO 4-1916)


Union Metallic Cartridge Works (as it was called for awhile after the 1911 merger of UMC and Remington), Bridgeport, Conn.



Randy: So then was UMC the sole U.S. maker of the balle D bullet? I think all I’ve seen from each of the makers has had the U with either the dot or B inside. Jack


A Western headstamp from my collection:



I understand that U B is UMC Bridgeport. But there is also U T. Any idea?


Schneider: My unguaranteed offhand guess was that the balle D with U with a dot, a T, or a B inside were all of UMC production, but perhaps that’s too simple an answer. I haven’t seen enough specimens of these bullets to know if Western, for example, always used bullets with the same basemark. If they did, and if that basemark is unique to Western, then probably there were suppliers other than the Bridgeport plant of Rem-UMC. Jack


For what it’s worth, I have 8 mm Lebel WESTERN headstamps with the following dates- 1915, 11-15, 4-16, & 1918 in my collection.

And other than French marked & dated bullet bases, I have: the U, and the U with a dot in the center as JP shows. Plus a U with a T in the center, and a U with a B in the center. Nothing I can attribute to Western. The U T came from a R.H.A. Co. 2-1917 headstamped round. Think this confirms what Jack notes as being Remington (although he states UMC) Remington took over the Swanton, VT, Robin Hood works in 1915 according to: Robin Hood & Their Merry Shot Shells by Windy Klinect.

I doubt, but may well be wrong, the U B is other than Remington, Bridgeport Conn.

Hope this is of help


I was told before that the “B” and “T” indicate the metal composition of the bullet. “B” is Bronze, and “T” is Tombac (a European term for gilding metal).