Powder used in Japanese rifle ammunition


#1

Had the following request:

Cheers,
Lew


#2

A couple of years ago I inerted am couple of different Japanese 7.7mm rounds to send to a friend, and was intrigued to notice that the powders looked completely different. Somewhere I have a photo….


#3

The following data is taken from Ken Elks book on Japanese ammo.

6.5mm Type 30 Ball - 32 grains square flake NC
6.5mm Type 38 Ball - 39 grains square flake NC
6.5mm Type 11 LMG Ball - 30 grains square flake NC
7.7mmSR Type 89 Ball - 46 grains tubular NC
7.7mmSR Type 92 ball - 45.2 grains tubular NC
7.7mm Type 97 Ball - 44.7 grains tubular NC
7.7mm Rimmed ball - 39 grains tubular NC
7.9mm Type 1 Ball - 43.7 grains small square flake NC

Other loads will differ slightly. If the original enquirer needs to know about Japanese ammo in all its varieties I recommend he buys Ken’s book!

Regards
TonyE


#4

TonyE

NC=??


#5

NC is nitrocellulose, the substance that contains the energy set free on burning. Propellants of this type are also called single-base.

Some small-arms propellants in addition to nitrocellulose contain nitroglycerine (NG) as a second source of energy and are called double-base. Examples are British cordite and American ball powder. Another name is Ballistite.


#6

JPeelen:

THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIMELY RESPONSE. I SUSPECTED IT STOOD FOR NITROCELLULOSE. DID THE JAPANESE HAVE A NAME FOR THEIR NC? DID THEY MANUFACTURE THEIR OWN POWDER OR IMPORT IT FROM ANOTHER SOURCE? I KNOW A LITTLE BIT ABOUT AMERICAN SMOKELESS POWDERS BUT ALMOST NOTHING ABOUT JAPANESE SMOKELESS POWDERS. I AM PLEASED TO LEARN THE POWDER WAS SINGLE-BASE AS I ALWAYS THOUGHT IT WAS MOST LIKELY DOUBLE-BASED. AGAIN, THANK YOU FOR ENLIGHTENING ME.


#7

Early on (1890s-1900s) Japan had two types of NC flake Powders, Type “S” and Type “B” These are used as “Firing Proof Marks” on T38 Rifles of early Manufacture; Later they used a “Type T”. as mentioned, Ken Elks has an excellent survey of these in his writings on Japanese Ammo.

Smokeless Powders in Japan followed the German Flake Pattern originally, but were made in Japan…after WWI, on the survey of Powder types, they opted for a DuPont style Tubular Powder on the IMR formulation, and produced Tubular Powder for all their “Larger” Cartridges (7,7 (three) and 7,9).

I don’t know exactly where the Powder Factories were in Japan ( They were pretty self-sufficient in Powder, right from before WW I).

Doc AV


#8

DocAV:

THANKS FOR THE INFORMATION. I HAVE ALWAYS THOUGHT THAT THE SQUARE FLAKE POWDER USED IN THE 6.5MM CARTRIDGES LOOKED, SMELLED, AND TASTED GERMAN, AS; LOOKS LIKE A DUCK, WALKS LIKE A DUCK, QUACKS LIKE A DUCK, ETC.