Old Bullet Belt

Hey everyone. I’m sorry, for I don’t know much about ammunition or guns as a whole. I recently came into possession of a really old looking belt of large bullets, roughly 78 of them. They have the same markings for the most part, that being LC 61 or LC 52. One has WCC 59 on it. I’ve looked into it a bit and have read they could be from WWII or Vietnam. Could anyone help me out? Thanks!

Hello. Pictures or measurements would be helpful. Could be .50 cal, could be 7.62x51, could be…

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The two digits “61” after the maker “LC” Lake City Arsenal date these to 1961, 1952. and “WCC” Western Cartridge Co. is 1959. So pre-official involvement in Vietnam, but the 52 covers Korea.

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The 60’s ones are roughly 2 9/16 inches each. The 59 one is roughly 1 15/16. I also found one from 43 that is roughly 2 7/16 inches. Thanks man!

Awesome! Thank you so much dude!

Asgardian, you image is showing US made 7.62x51 M82 blanks belted on M13 links.

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Thank you so much for your help! Much appreciated EOD.

Which at the time, would have been for the M60 machine gun.

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Which one, RangerJoe?

Those in your image which I commented on.

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The ammo belt you showed (at least the few rounds) would have been for the original US M60 Machine Gun. Although technically “adopted” in 1957, it wasn’t until a few years later that M60s were widely deployed across the Army. With a special Blank Firing Adapter (BFA) which clamped over the M60’s flash suppressor and muzzle, the weapon could cycle full automatic with M82 banks… exactly the ones you show in the photo. These same blanks (without the disintegrating-link belt) worked in the M14 rifle (with an appropriate BFA) of the same era.

Typical ammo belts (like the one you have) contained 100 rounds. Depending on the mission “load out”, belts often were a mix of 4 regular Full Metal Jacket (FMJ) rounds to 1 Tracer. Of course for training, a belt like yours would have 100 banks. Belts could be (often were) connected end-to-end… which could provide a LOT of firepower.

You mention one casing was from 1943, that would NOT be a 7.61x51, but rather a .30-'06 as used in WW1 and WW2. They have a similar body size and will fit in the same M13 disintegrating-ling belt, but would NOT be for the same weapon. You also mention one casing ('59) is much shorter than the others. I’m sure it does not have the same “fake bullet type nose”, but rather is an empty/fired case someone stuck in the belt.

What you have is a random collection of mostly late 50s to early 60s blanks with a few other cases stuck into M13 disintegrating-links like used in the M60. Fun stuff!

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Very informative, thank you so much RangerJoe! I appreciate it greatly. I’ll have to do some more research based off of all this.

Asgardian,

Regarding the 1-15/16" length '59 dated round, there was also a 7.62mm XM82 blank found with a (+) FA 59 headstamp that used a crimp similar to the Cal. .30 M1909 blank. That is a rounded over case mouth with a card disk and a retaining cannelure in the case neck.

The link below is to a very nice report posted by EOD a while back. Pretty much the whole story on the development of the 7.62mm blank.

Odds would be your '59 item is a fired case as RangerJoe suggests.

Dave

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I’m really not a dude

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Awesome! I’ll have to take a look. Thank you.

I apologize, that is something I call just about everyone regardless of age or gender. It’s like calling people sir or ma’am, but less formal.

Defintely 7.62 x 51mm M82 blanks. I had a friend who served in Vietnam (Sgt head NCO of unit. When talking once, he described a bunker with two M60’s that had shelves for AMMO BELTS. His unit would link as many as 1000 rounds together, Layed out on shelves to help with feeding. There was a rack above the Guns that held extra barrels which would be changed after firing a continuous belt. When the bad guys attacked, the guns were very effective as they had overlapping fields of fire. The soldiers made sure that there was at least one gun always available to fire while changing barrels on the other. Bottom line these are maybe pre Vietnam but certainly for the M60!

thanks for the appology. I’m aware of it’s commom useage.

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Thank you so much for the primary source John, I appreciate it. Thank your friend for his service for me.