Oldest 6.5x52 Carcano


I am very happy today! A virtual friend sent me the oldest 6,5x52 Carcano i saw in my life! Is a blank round mod.91 (fired) marked B-93 (Bologna 1893)
with flat base of the first model and (off course missed) paper bullet.
Teak, please dont shoot me if photos are too heavy. My fight with p.c. is very hard!
Happy new years to everybody.


Vittorio, my friend, no need to shoot you!

Take a look at the photo posting and photography hints FAQs; these have some directions on sizing the photos.
I’ll be glad to help you if these do not explain it clearly.
The FAQs are not carved in stone; input from users such as yourself is
valued as directions on how we can improve these for all users.

I hope you find an even earlier one in 2007!

By cropping and re-sizing, I came up with this:

. . . . . .



Do you know where this was found? It looks like it has been in the ground a long, long time.


the brass was recently found with metal detector, in an old training camp in north western Italy. Now i’ll (softly) restore it.
About the oldest, i spoke too fast! Today a friend of mine sent me a photo of a similar B-92!


Have VS 93 in my collection so SL was not only maker at that time.


I have a SL-93 one as original Dummy (flat base) , non fluted roundnosed empty jacket -blackened-, and the same Dummytype from B-95 (grooved base), unfluted black Dummymock-bullet roundnosed.
I just got in a Tracer, an Armourpiercing, a Sniper spitzer round, and an Armour-Piercing Incendiary as a cut-Modell from an italian museumsplace (all WW I vintage, except the sniper one from 1937). The sniper one has a much more pointed bt form as the AP one and is easy to distinguish. The WW I Scharfschuetzen/Sniper round I


For what it is worth I have 2 flat base VS 93 ball rounds, the difference is in the 3 as one has a rounded top while the other has a flat top! A different bunter! Both have a ring crimped domed brass primer & brass jacketed non-magnetic bullets.


What is the new Carcano book?


Both V.S. and S.L. where not makers but inspectors (unknown) of two Government arsenals. The first one was of Pirotechnia of Capua (near Naples) C-93 and the second the Pirotechnia of Bologna- B-9…


“S.L.” Conte Luigi Scotti, Chief Inspector of the Pirotecnica di Bologna during the developement and early manufacture of the 6,5 M91 and M95 series of Carcano Cartridges.
Of “V.S.” I have no indications, but there is a rather complete List of italian Ammunition factory inspectors from Vetterli production right through to the end of 6,5mm production (1960s)Scotti effectively designed the final M91 cartridge during the 1890-92 trials, starting weith a Rimmed cases, then ( on the experiences with similar Rimless german and belgian Ammo of the period, adopted the rimless case which became the Flat based M91 cartridge.
The M95 ( recessed base) came out of Field experience in 1892-95, where a major problem of leaky primers made a “self-sealing” primer ring necessary, and the extra working of the case head to impress the ring and releif headstamp added hardness to the head, removing the risk of Primer Pocket expansion. A slight Bolt face redesign made sure that the inner primer ring was “swaged” on the impact of firing, thus improvig the gas seal between head and primer cup.
Other modifications carried out included stab crimping the bullets in the necks, to prevent the soldiers “customizing” the cartridge loads, as well as “loose bullets” causing jams in feeding.

My earliest M91/95 cartridge is a 1904 “X” load ( Solenite) found in a mixed box of 1930s and 40s (50 rounds) Military Surplus ammo which came with a New M91/38 Fucile Corto.
Here in Australia the Milsurp market was such that (in the 1970s) one could buy a Carcano rifle and 100 rounds of Mixed ammo for less than $40.00.
I ended up with a few thousand rounds of 6,5mm ammo, including an assortment of WW I and pre-WW I cartridges ,including a “SB 18” ( Succursale Bologna–Bologna Annex), the beforementioned 1904 Solenite, and even a selection of Magistri short range frangibles and the Multiball "Guardia " cartridge. All of these are similar to ball ammo, and were mixed up twoith WW II and 1930s Ball ammo, and even some 1950s and 60s stuff.
All makers(Capua, Bologna, SMI, BPD and LBC, and even Hirtenberger, 1936) feature in my collection of Italian 6,5s (over several hundred pieces).

Doc AV
AV Ballistics Forensic Services,
Brisbane Australia

PS, Vittorio, Dove in Italia Nord-Ovest avete trovato il Bossolo in fotografia ?
Saluti, il Perito balistico piemontese.


Very interesting Doc AV. Thanks for the info.
FYI an S B 17 ball exists, just to pass along more info.
Also found a S B 16 ball


Regarding Doc Av’s useful reply, if someone should be confused why the initials “SL” stand for Luigi Scotti, it should be pointed out that in Italian, names are often used Last name first. Thus, S.L. equals Scotti, Luigi. Doc - how about publishing that list you are talking about? I have some books from Italy on ammo, as well as dozens from the USA and other countries, and I have found no really comprehenisve list of Inspector’s initials. there are a couple of 9mm Glisenti rounds I would love to identify. Mi piacerebbe molto ricevere quella informazione.


John, only few names of inspector are known, because of destruction of archives during the second world war. Effectively, Luigi Scotti, Conte della Scala di S.Giorgio (Count of s.George steeple, very romantic) who was the chief engineer of the Pirotecnico di Bologna and was the 6.5x52 designer may be the L.S. of my B-93 brass and this is indeed very probable! To put the last name in front of the first was an habit of the soldiers.

Doc, you have a very good collection of 6.5 Carcano, and some mark like LBC that i haven’t. Is very interesting the Hinterberger mark, that made cartridges for the Italian government in 1936 (as WWI repair) in various calibers. Some time ago, I found with Metaldetector some 8x50 lebel H made for Italy. The Hinterberger’s for Italy have a flat base and as marks a star at twelve o’clock and the year 1936 at six.
My B-93, togheter with another two and some B-94 in my hands since this morning, are founded near Cuneo, a town in the region of Piemonte.


I have been under the impression that the B.P B-18 “maroon” tipped color Carcano tracer is the oldest military color tip…is that true ?


While we’re at it, I have these Italian 6.5 Carcano headstamps:
Are there others? One of my odder ones is an LBC 45 with a flat base.


[quote=“Jon C.”]While we’re at it, I have these Italian 6.5 Carcano headstamps:
Are there others? One of my odder ones is an LBC 45 with a flat base.[/quote]
SMI is Societ


The 6,5 x 52 mm Carcano also exist with T 92 (9 and 3 o’clock) headstamp wich is also found in the vitualy unknown 6,5 x 52 R Carcano experimental.

Federico Graziano


Definitely both the Oldest and the rarest 6,5 carcano ammo ( T92), as general production of M1891 designed case ammo (plain base) only began in 1892, and the factory at Torino (Turin) ceased manufacture of Ammunition by about 1900; it was a general manufactury of Artillery, Wheeled equipment and Arms, Ammunition and Clothing & Leather-ware (harnesses etc); After that the factory became simply an Artillery and Quartermaster repair factory ( a Bit like the Artillerie ZeugFabrik in Vienna).

The Military character of the Industrial area at Dora in inner Turin finally ceased at the end of WW II. The factory Buildings (in commercial use) remained until the late 1990s, when the entire area was “redeveloped” into Residential and Commercial space.

Turin and Bologna had been instrumental in the production of the M1890 and M1891 Experimental Trials ammo (both rimmed and rimless), and as the “M91” rifle system was officially adopted well into 1892, real general issue ammo production only began that year.
By 1895, defects in cartridge case design (Loose primer Pockets, loose necks, etc.) led to the improvements in the case which gave the M91/95 design case with the relief headstamp in a large circular groove in the head, this groove acting as a self sealing crimp on the moment of firing, thus sealing in the primer, and the neck had stab crimps added to prevent (a) soldiers tampering with the Load— an instance of “Home improvement”, and more importantly,(b) prevention of Bullet movement or loosening under recoil, or under the vibration of Horse drawn wagons during field transport.

Prime designer in the Ammo development was Count Luigi Scotti, Chief Inspector at the Bologna Plant (initials “SL”)…his initials appear on most of the experimental trials ammo as well.

The “T” headstamp is known on all varieties of 10,4x47R ( Vetterli) Ammo,
10,4 Glisenti Pistol ammo, and of course, at least 1890- 1900 6,5mm ammo (all types, trials and general issue).

An intertesting period of Cartridge design…the italians were the First to consider 6,5mm as a viable Military calibre, and their various case designs gave rise to nearly all the other 6,5mm Military cases ( mannlicher adopted a variation of the M1890 rimmed case, and it became the M93 Romanian/M95 Dutch Mannlicher ( 6,5x53,5 R); from this developed the 6,5x54 Rimless mannlicher Schoenauer; The Germans (mauser) who had submitted trials rifles in 1890-91 to the Italian Trials committee, and had been experimenting with small calibres for military rifles, came out with the M94 6,5 Swedish Mauser cartridsge ( a different sized case, I concede) but 6,5 none the less; Daudetau designed his 6,5x54SR case in 1894-95; again a 6,5 but on a variation of an earlier Nagant Freres case, which also gave us the 7,62x54R Russian; Mauser took the 6,5 calibre toi its logical conclusion, the 6,5x58 Portuguese in 1904 ( a joint Portuguese- German development, as the portuguese had trialed Steyr rifles in both 6,5x53R and 6,5x54MS, but wanted someting stronger, and probably based on the Mauser ( ie, M88 design cartridge case). And of course, the Japanese, mindfull of their small stature troops, went for the “mini-mite” 6,5x50 SR cartridge in 1897 (Type 30)…adequate for most use up to 1945— and it became the First “assault rifle intermediate cartridge” in the Federov M1916 Avtomat…The Italians of the 1890s have a lot to be proud as the initiators of wide ranging cartridge development.

regards, Doc AV
AV Ballistics.