Pre WW2 German .30 Caliber?

I got these in a ammo batch I bought. They look to be pre-WW2 German .30 caliber. Box is in great shape and headstmap looks to be 2-62 BD 7.62 VE from Noon clockwise. Anyone have any info on these? I am new to old ammo and my searches have been unfruitful.


The headstamp you typed would indicate that what you have are cartridges of Caliber .30 US for the M1 and M2 Carbines, on cases manufactured by Cartoucherie de Valence in the second quarter of 1962. Likely intended for service in the French Indo-Chinese war, as already in what became Vietnam, American weapons were much in evidence with the French.

Why they have been repacked into a box for German 7.9 x 57 type s.S. ball, made in 1936, with cases made by Deutsche Waffen- und Munitionsfabriken A.-G., Berlin-Borsigwalde factory, is beyond me.

Edited to correct identification of cartridge case type.

John Moss

Interesting. They are way smaller than .30-06 cartridges only 1 5/8" long. Take a look at the headstamp pic I uploaded and maybe you can make out some other info I can not.

O.K. These should be the .30 Carbine round. Same basic headstamp. All the other information applies. To avoid future confusion on this thread, I will amend my original comments to the correct cartridge case type.

This is why it is important to give measurements when unsure of a cartridge’s “heritage.”

John Moss

It is a french .30 carbine from Valence.


Any paraticular value to them or the box?

The cartridges are common, and worth very little. Worth NOTHING for shooting, as they are very corrosive, and should never be fired in a U.S. M1 Carbine, due to the difficulty of cleaning the captive piston and its housing. The piston “holder” is staked into the housing, and removing it a few times to clean, even with the proper carbine piston wrench, will destroy the staking. Constant re-staking will likely ruin the piston housing.

I can comment on the box. It is a standard ball ammunition box from a fairly prolific manufacturer (the label contents, I am talking about, not who manufactured the cardboard box). Someone more attune to these boxes would need to evaluate it.

John Moss

Thanks JohnMoss for this information! I just new the box was Pre WW2 and wanted to make sure.

Have a great day!

John, re: your mention of French involvement in VN in 1962…the French left VN in 1954-55 after DienBienPhu…by 1962 the US was in SVN as “advisors” soon to become full combatants. France MAY have supplied ARVN with .30 Cal. Ammo after the 1950s, ( both 06 and Car.), as did the US, but France had the Algerian problem by then.

France did still use .30 Carbine till the late 70s, for secondary and training use.
Seems the corrosion problem did not affect the French, maybe their rigorous training and cleaning methods kept their carbines in Good condition???
( from my reading of several years of “Gazette des Armes” back in the
70s/80s in Europe.).


Doc - well, it is not unusual these days to be off by ten or 12 years in my thinking, or what passes for thinking.

Regarding French use of the M1 Carbine, I have no knowledge of their experience with corrosive carbine ammunition. It is not a matter of rigorous training and cleaning methods. There is simply no way to clean up the piston thoroughly from corrosive ammunition without removing it from the underside of the barrel. This eventually destroys the staking and even the part (forget the proper nomenclature, but am speaking of the threaded nut that holds the pistol within the piston housing attached to the underside of the barrel), since you can only restake in another location around the diameter so many times before the part is unserviceable.

It was no accident that U.S. Military Ammunition for the .30 Carbine was non-corrosive primed from the very start of production, years before the .30-06 military production was switched to non-corrosive priming.

My experience with French ammunition of the period of the Indo China war melting into the Viet Nam conflict, under civilian, peacetime conditions, without the interference in maintenance of an all-out conflict, has been that it was very poor. I cannot speak for the 7.5 French cartridge, as I know little about it and have never fired a single round of it in my life. We did play with a really beat up M1 carbine with a rusted out bore that a friend picked up for the price of a few of its still-serviceable parts, and corrosive ammo, French and Domincan, finished the job on any functionability that the weapon had at that point. The Dominican was so bad, showing pressure signs, that we stopped firing the carbine with it after less than ten rounds.

I cannot address the question of ARVN use of French ammunition in Carbines. I was not in Vietnam. I do know from films, and discussions with friends who served there, that the carbine was popular with ARVN because of its lighter weight and pretty good handling characteristics, but no mention of ammunition ever came up in those conversations.

Yavin, I apologize to you for my miscalculations of the use of the 1962 ammunition in question by the Viet Minh. Obviously, it was made almost a decade after the involvement.
More and more, my age is showing. I should have known my time-line was wrong, as I had a dear friend who served in VN as an advisor very early in American involvement there, in 1963-1964 as I recall. In fact, he carried a carbine he got from ARVN. I worked with him when I was a civilian technician with the Army Reserve. He was basically my military counterpart. He had just come to our office as an Advisor to one of the Reserve Units I worked with, and in which I was also an active Army Reservist myself. Interesting guy.


No problems,John…I too suffer from “old timer’s disease” (71 next March)…so mistakes/ mis-statements are getting more common…
Best Regards,
I only went to Saigon in 2006 on business…missed out on the 1960s Tour by the Aussie Task force… I was what you Yanks call a REMF…reserved occupation ( medical student) but I still did 6 years of Reserves at 50 days a year ( average; some years 100).

Doc - I did one full-time tour in the Army, but the rest was active reserve - another 7 years of it with about two years concurrent service as a Department of Army Civilian (DAC) working for the Reserve. We were basically, along with our military counterpart Advisors, the Unit Commander’s 40 hour a week representative, as well as handling the huge amount of paper work, much of it duplication or totally unnecessary, that the Reserves were saddled with. Our Reserves require a once-a-week two-hour drill, for us Thursday nights. Mine were usually about a four-hour affair. Then we also had a once a year Summer Camp of two weeks full-time. I was often on the Advanced Party and sometimes a day after the departure of most of the troops, for clean up, turn in of certain items issued at and for Camp, etc.

Sounds like the Australian Reserves were a similar set up. The Reserve service obligations and schedules have changed since I was in, probably for the better other than the amount of time they are forced to spend on various call ups. I know they are better-trained than we were, and now with a large percentage of combat veterans.

I had my second Honorable Discharge before American participation in the war in VN really heated up, and became a major deployment of full-strength Army Groups. At that, I don’t think any Reserve units were called up for VN; not like today.