SCHV Part 1


#1

In early 1952, Aberdeen Proving Ground was given verbal approval of a proposal to investigate the merit of small-caliber, high-velocity cartridges for use in rifles and carbines. If the old-guard Ordnance Department officers had forseen that this seemingly harmless project would eventually lead to adoption of the M16 rifle and the 5.56x45 cartridge there probably would have been a concentrated effort to nip it in the bud. But, they didn


#2

Superb stuff Ray!
I’ve got my head round the fact that the initial experimental round was formed from the commercial 222" Remington but the headstamp of the subsequent ‘production’ load is military. Were these specifically made in this calibre or were they formed from another case, i.e. the .30" Carbine?
Jim


#3

Good information, thanks.


#4

Ray…My collecting of military cartridges “cuts off” long before the SCHV projects, etc., but I certainly enjoy reading your posts and seeing the photos…KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK !!!..Randy


#5

Really great and beyond interesting Ray! Thanks so much. I love this type of history.

Jason


#6

[quote=“Jim”]Superb stuff Ray!
I’ve got my head round the fact that the initial experimental round was formed from the commercial 222" Remington but the headstamp of the subsequent ‘production’ load is military. Were these specifically made in this calibre or were they formed from another case, i.e. the .30" Carbine?
Jim[/quote]

Jim

As far as I know the WCC cartridges were the production rounds as per the report recommendations (20,000 rounds & 5 carbines). I don’t know the exact quantity that was made. Maybe HWS III will tell us.

The 30 Carbine case has a smaller diameter base. I don’t believe that case was used for any subsequent SCHV experimentals.

Ray


#7

Thanks for the wonderful information Ray. I have a couple of these with the WCC headstamp somewhere. I had not been able to identify them, so they ended up in a box or envelope somewhere in my stuff. Now I can get one of them into the collection, if I can just find them.


#8

Ray,
I’m struggling somewhat but am trying my best to keep up! You are saying that the Cal.22 Carbine (W C C 5 4) was not formed from any other case but was manufactured specifically for these trials? So were they produced by Winchester Western for the Aberdeen Proving Ground?
Jim


#9

[quote=“Jim”]Ray,
I’m struggling somewhat but am trying my best to keep up! You are saying that the Cal.22 Carbine (W C C 5 4) was not formed from any other case but was manufactured specifically for these trials? So were they produced by Winchester Western for the Aberdeen Proving Ground?
Jim[/quote]

Jim

The cartridges developed and tested by Gustafson at APG were made from 222 Remington brass with 41 grain Sisk bullets. At the conclusion of his tests he issued his report which recommended the fabrication of additional carbines and 5000 cartridges to be used in further tests and development. Apparantly, his recommendations were followed and WCC was contracted to manufacture the new cartridges (WCC 54). How many were actually made, I do not know.

We know that the CAL 22 CARBINE was one of the cartridges entered in the SALVO I trials in 1956. Who else may have used them I do not know. APG could well have been one of the agencies. APG was pretty much ordered out of the cartridge developing business in 1955 but their testing authority continued. There were several SALVO and SCHV cartridges that were tested at one time or another but the reports are not readily available and we know little about the results. The Gustafson and Davis reports, the SALVO I and II trials, and the 1959 Infantry Board tests of the 6.35mm are among the few that are fairly well documented. There’s a lot we still do not know but are learning bit by bit. The exchange of information via the Internet has changed things quite a bit for the better. Before, most of this stuff was a big black hole. Now it’s just a little black hole.

I’m hoping Daniel Watters is reading this and will correct anything that needs correcting. He knows more about these programs than I could ever hope to. I’m just an ignorant wannabe cartridge collector trying to learn about some of the cartridges in my cigar boxes.

I’ll be posting Part 2 of SCHV (Davis) before too long.

Ray


#10

Ray,
I have a similar cartridge with a F A 70 headstamp - any idea what this might be, or might this be covered in the eagerly anticipated part 2?


#11

Guy

No, Part two will be about the 22 - 7.62x51 M1 Homologous.

Are you sure it’s a 22 caliber? Got pictures?

Ray


#12

Ray, interesting stuff, about 18 months ago I posted a question about a 30 Carbine round with a pointed bullet ,which I had not seen before, it looks exactly like the projectile shape in your 3rd round with case WCC 54 my round is .275 at case neck and looks to be about 30 cal inside the case, the headstamp is W-W 30 CARBINE any ideas ? Randy


#13

Randy

Your description seems to indicate a wildcat.

275 outside case neck would likely be a 6mm, or less likely 25 caliber. The W-W headstamp would indicate post-1970 I think. There was/is a 256/30 Carbine wildcat. Other than that I wouldn’t know.

Ray


#14

The Infantry Board (Field Forces Board #3) ran tests on the .22 Carbine, as did Edgewood. Unfortunately, I have not been able to locate copies of these. Still, at least we now know the names of the reports, and should someone have enough money and time, they can look for them in the National Archives and elsewhere.


#15

Guy,
I have the same ‘F A 7 0’ round which is loaded with a jacketed softpoint bullet. The bullet is approx 1mm shorter than the .22" Carbine load and has a slightly more rounded ogive. I initially thought this was someone’s homemade creation but decided to contact Bill Woodin just on the off chance it might be something unusual.
He tells me that it is a Frankford Arsenal produced round for ‘recoil impulse’ trials related to the Colt IMP project and is quite genuine. I will post a picture if it’s of interest.
Jim[/quote]


#16

Jim,
Yours sounds like the same one I have. I was going to try to get a picture of it today after work, but if you can post a picture in the interim, that would be great.


#17

(L) .22" APG Carbine (W C C 5 4)
® .22" Carbine ‘Recoil Impulse Test’(F A 7 0)
Jim


#18

Jim - Guy

How about some dimensions also.

I was thinking to myself last night, and concluded that I may be guilty of adding confusion to these cartridges by not being more specific with names.

Gustafson calls this cartridge the CAL 22 CARBINE. The Olin SALVO display board labels it as the CAL 22 CARBINE as does the SALVO I report. So, I think I’m safe in calling it that. The test cartridges assembled and used by Gustafson probably should be labeled the same but to differentiate them I chose to call mine the 22 GUSTAFSON. This may have confused some readers.

Another point of confusion comes from individual collectors who put different names on the same cartridge. I have seen the WCC 54 cartridges called 22 SCHV, 22 APG, 22 CARBINE, 22 GUSTAFSON, 22 HI VELOCITY, even 22 IMP which is a completely different cartridge. There may be an “official” designation that was assigned, in the form of a T or XM number but I have not seen it. Maybe we’ll learn when HWS III is published.

Finally, I should have made some mention that this cartridge is NOT based on the Cal 30 Carbine case. It has “Carbine” in it’s name because the test arm was a modified M2 Carbine and it was intended that the cartridge replace the 30 Carbine (and possibly the Thompson SMG). The various 22 caliber wildcats using the 30 Carbine case are not the same thing as the CAL 22 CARBINE.

I hope I didn’t muddy the waters even further.

Ray


#19

Ray,
You are most certainly not adding to anybody’s confusion over this and in my opinion the trouble you’ve taken to explain and clarify various points is most helpful and greatly appreciated. Those of us with any interest in this particular topic will have at least a basic grasp of the round’s history but, whilst I would consider myself to be more interested than most, I had made the very basic mistake of assuming that the ‘W C C 5 4’ round was formed at Aberdeen from .30 Carbine brass. Now I know otherwise thanks to you.
As regards the dimensions of the ‘F A 7 0’ round - what would you like to know? I haven’t pulled the bullet to weigh it nor do I particularly want to! The overall length is about 1mm shorter than the ‘W C C 5 4’ round but I’d suggest that this might be due to the exposed soft lead tip being slightly damaged and rounded off. Keep up the good work - I for one eagerly await your next post.


#20

Jim

No, I would not want you to pull the bullet. I was curious if the case dimensions differed from the Cal 22 Carbine. Base, shoulder, and neck diameters for example.

Ray