Need help identifying two unusual cartridges

I would appreciate some help identifying these two cartridges I recently acquired.

7.92x57 Brass cass HS: K43 GIIZ, black primer seal (looks more puple in photos), remnants of black paint on tip. Cartridge weighs 417gns. Some thought that it may be a proof load. See photos below.

45 ACP, Steel case, TW 5 headstamp, lead bullet with what may be a .22 rf embedded in the bullet. This has some kind of red lacquer over it. See photos below. The headstamp of the .22rf (?) is a script. See last photo.

009 008 013

Looks pretty well made (no mold marks on the lead). Somebody’s home made exploder? Steel case too? Anyone have any ideas. John Moss, I would appreciate you weighing in.

Any and all information would be greatly appreciated.


Pat, the tip of your 7.92 x 57mm is actually a very dark purple rather than black. I have the same example and I have it listed as a Kynoch experimental of some sort. It is loaded with a 198gn streamline bullet but I have no idea what is ‘experimental’ about it.

The 7.9 is a MK II tracer for the Besa MG trials made by Kynoch

An after market oe home made .45 Exploder with an Austrian 22 blank in the nose

Pete, I have pulled my example and it is definitely loaded with a 198gn ball bullet…as was Tony Edward’s example.

Ta Jim
shouldn’t read while tired & just skim answers


Thanks for the information!


I can only mimic the answer on the the .45 already given. It is an obvious reload of a TW case. I am sure TW never made such a load. Still, it is interesting, of course. I have never seen one.

Nothing to add on the 7.9 Brit round. Didn’t have this in my own collection. The headstamp is, of course, for a Mark IIZ tracer round, but as mentioned, the cases could have been used for experimental rounds.

Sorry I cannot add more.

John M.

There are a number of experimental 7.92x57 rounds described by Peter Lebbett in “British 7.92mm Ammunition” but this particular one caught my eye:

Ref: Labbett, P and Mead, P.J.F. British 7.92mm Ammunition. 1981. p. 18.

Although it mentions the use of 1944 dated GII cases, I wonder if some may have been made using a 1943 dated case such as the one you have? I could be way off the mark here but just thought I’d throw it out there.

1 Like

Well done for finding that extract! I cannot remember whether my bullet has a flat base - I don’t believe it does - but it does at least show that Kynoch were in the habit of loading experimental ball bullets into tracer cases. I’ll pull my cartridge again and have a look.

I should have checked Labbitt. I have all his monographs, and they are a great source of information on each and every subject he covers.

Mayhem, thanks for reminding us of that source.

John M.

Here is BK167/227 for youBK167 227 7.92mm Flat based Bullet.PDF (796.3 KB)

hope this helps

Thanks a lot for sharing this detailed drawing.

I do not know if the handwritten letter is what it looks like or not. What it looks like to me is the cursive version of the Russian letter " И ", which is pronounced " ěn ". The printed version of the same letter is, in uppercase, " H " and in lower case " н ". Most Russian characters are printed the same for upper and lower-case letters, just the lower-case ones are smaller. Some are quite different, though. Many of the cursive versions do not look like the printed versions, either.

Don’t know if this is helpful, but this is what I saw in the character.

It’s an H as found on Austrian .22 and other rimfire headstamps by Hirtenberg

Well…I had hoped that with the extract provided by Mayhem together with the Kynoch drawing posted by Peashooter this unusual cartridge might finally be positively identified. However, I have just pulled my example and the bullet is a typical boat-tailed sS-style ball.