Question about 30.06 headstamp: R A 41 300 Z


#1

In with some other WWII era 30.06 brass I found several rounds with headstamps marked “R A 41” at the top and “300 Z” below. I suppose it must have been made by Remington in 1941, but what does the “300 Z” mark tell us about this brass?

Thank you.


What is the grove for?
#2

Do a search. This has been discussed a couple of times, at least. It’s British purchase for RAF use.

Ray


#3

45auto–I assume you have either miss-read or have made a typo error and really mean “R A 41” not “F A”. I have edited your post to reflect this, but if I am mistaken and you REALLY did mean “F A” let me know.


#4

Thanks, I’ll check. And thanks again, for correcting the typo.


#5

‘300’ is the British way to show 30 caliber. ‘Z’ is for nitrocellulose powder. The primers were crimped for use in aircraft machineguns.


#6

Here are some pictures of the headstamp and two boxes (ball & tracer)

cheers
René


#7

I was going to post a link to some scans in the archive section but I can’t find them so I will re-post them.

Here are some dummies with a variety of headstamps from that same British contract (I think!)

All the headstamps are in the pictured box.



#8

Phil, I don’t know about the same contract, but that is likely, but those dummies most certainly were for the UK. Thanks for posting your usual beautiful pictures. It really spruces up and rounds out a thread.

John Moss


#9

Did the contract specify green painted flutes? Every other dummy I have seen in British service has red painted flutes.


#10

Green Paint was applied ONLY to Drill .300Z, to easily distinguish it from Drill .303 MkVII,(Red) also used by the RAF (in great quantities.) The .300Z was for use in Early orders of US Built fighters and a few B17s which were in RAF service (very early models (1940) still fitted with .30cals, not the later USAAF types which were all .50cal Fitted.)

Whilst a lot of the .300Z Drill were “new made”, a proportion came from either fired cases or Salvaged ammo broken down (one shipwreck/war loss was known to have ended up as “Drill rounds”).

Regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.


#11

I suspect that another reason there are many headstamps in the US-Supplied British dummies, many of which are not headstamps supplied to England, is that cases rejected by inspectors from use as tactical ammunition were often saved for “loading” as blank and dummy cartridges. I would bet the same practice was followed for these. I note that all of the headstamps Phil Butler posted were from Remington, who made these dummy rounds.

John Moss


#12

Thanks for the answers, it makes sense now.


#13

It is also significant that many of the British .300 Drill Mark I and II were made from U.S. cases dated 1929, 30 and 31, mostly by Frankford Arsenal. Whether these were shipped to Britain as complete rounds and then the cases made into wood bulleted drill rounds, or whether they were old M1 cases I do not know.

regards
TonyE


#14

[quote=“DocAV”]Green Paint was applied ONLY to Drill .300Z, to easily distinguish it from Drill .303 MkVII,(Red) also used by the RAF (in great quantities.) The .300Z was for use in Early orders of US Built fighters and a few B17s which were in RAF service (very early models (1940) still fitted with .30cals, not the later USAAF types which were all .50cal Fitted.)
Whilst a lot of the .300Z Drill were “new made”, a proportion came from either fired cases or Salvaged ammo broken down (one shipwreck/war loss was known to have ended up as “Drill rounds”).
Regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.[/quote]Can this have anything to do with the fact that rifles in .30 cal lend/leased to the british, (Garand, P17, etc.) where painted with a green band around the stock, often in two places?
Soren


#15

Springfields and M17s and Browning M1917s issued to the Home Guard ( NOT the Regular Army) in the 1940s were painted with a RED stripe, not Green…(Green was a late 1970s Australian Cadet rifle paint job, denoting “OK to fire Ball”).

regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.


#16

Tony,
During the early part of the War (39-41) merchantmen sailing from US Ports carried anti-aircraft protection, usually in .30 calibre. The ammunition supplied was a “Warehouse sweepings” supply of both M1906 ( back to WW I manufacture) and M1 ( 173 grain ball). Crews soon got into the habit of sorting through the various dates and types, before belting it up for use; test firing to ascertain the most reliable lots or years, and the rest either used for practice or dumped overboard.( a lot of the WW I-era M1906 was cracked necks or bad primers)

Possibly some of this material was used to make “Emergency”( “Local Supply”) drill rounds in Britain during this period. The Red wooden Bullet Drill is also a type made after the war in Belgium, Holland and Denmark , from fired or reject .30/06 ammo.

The "silvery " colour bullet would be from pre-1930s M1906 loads ( Tinned or CuNi)

Hope this helps elucidate the question.

Doc AV
AV Ballistics.
Brisbane
Australia.


#17

[quote=“TonyE”]It is also significant that many of the British .300 Drill Mark I and II were made from U.S. cases dated 1929, 30 and 31, mostly by Frankford Arsenal. Whether these were shipped to Britain as complete rounds and then the cases made into wood bulleted drill rounds, or whether they were old M1 cases I do not know.

regards
TonyE

[/quote]

Tony,

All of the ex-Home Guard ammo that I have found in the UK, usually given by old Home Guard soldiers, was from these dates so I have always assumed that this was the source of the cases for these dummies.

gravelbelly


#18

I think there was considerable procurement of the new .30 M1 ball ammunition by the U.S. armed forces in the years beginning in 1928, following a full decade from the end of the first war when no real production of rifle ball ammunition took place in this country. In 1928 and also, I think, 1929 there was significant production not only by Frankford Arsenal but also by most of the commercial makers. Jack


#19

Doc

Whilst what you say is of course true, in 1940 the British Purchasing Commission had bought about 500 million rounds of .30-06 ball, tracer and AP from both the US government and commercial contractors. The ball ammo was a mixture of M1 and M2 so this was a probable source for the fired cases. It also seems likely that the US military got rid of a large amount of old M1 stock in these orders which accounts for the prevalence of FA 1929-31 rounds in the UK.

Most of the British made Mark I drill rounds seem to have been loaded with resized defective .303 bullets soldered to the case mouth. The Mark II had the distance piece and bullet all in one, and the Mark IV (right in my picture) were constructed like the .303 Drill Mark IX with a cupro-nickel envelope over the wooden “bullet” part of the distance piece. The Mark III drill was peculiar to Indian service.

Oddly, the Remington drill does not seem to have been formally introduced to British service with a Mark number, although the ball tracer and AP rounds were.

Regards
TonyE