Slics 2015-wra 43


#1

SLICS is in full swing. The room shopping/trading was great yesterday. My day was made when I found a WRA 9mm headstamp I had never seen or heard about before!!! Also some other great stuff and a lot of info That is new to me. The hall opens to setup this afternoon, but if I left now it would be a successful trip.

We miss some of the regulars who had to cancel for sickness, or other reasons. Some luggage problems with the airlines, but overall it is lots of fun.

Cheers,
Lew


#2

Picture of headstamp, please, with any comments necessary to point out differences.


#3

I bought the following box:

It contained 49 cartridges with the headstamp below left and one cartridge with the headstamp below right.

Have never documented the “W.R.A. 43” headstamp on 9x19mm cartridges. Has anyone else seen one???

Does anyone have an idea why this headstamp was made? I have asked Dan Shuey and he didn’t know. I have the Winchester papers and will look through those but haven’t had time yet and probably won’t for the rest of this month.

If you have one of these boxes, it is probably a good idea to check the headstamps of all the cartridges in them.

Cheers,
Lew


#4

Lew, an amazing find, congratulations! The headstamp size and centering looks like the one used in the smaller .30 Carbine cartridge case; could this be a test case that ended up loaded as a ball cartridge? Also, coincidentally or not, there is a .30 Carbine headstamped W.R.A. 9 M-M.

Very interesting, thanks for sharing.

Regards,

Fede


#5

Fabulous find! I think that IS a .30 Carbine bunter. I will have to check and see if I have a WRA 43 in carbine for comparison (I don’t collect dates in that caliber).


#6

I examined the picture of the W.R.A. 43 9 mm round against a W.R.A. 43 round of .30 Carbine caliber. I think that the bunter that marked that 9 mm cartridge was a standard .30 Carbine bunter.

In checking the one round I retained as a box specimen in my box like Lew’s, I find the box is dated from 1942. In my mind, that would tend to eliminate the possibility of the W.R.A. 43-dated round being a prototype for that series of 9 mm ammunition in WWII, since one year earlier they were already making serial production of the W.R.A. 9 M-M headstamped cartridges.

That would leave a couple of possibilities (maybe more). Firstly, that the headstamp is simply an error. That is, a .30 carbine bunter was accidentally left in the loading machinery. Such mis-headstamps are widely known I have a few examples in my own collection. Does that negate its interest? Heck no. The headstamp is the headstamp. As me if my .30 Luger with “LUGAR” misspelled with a letter “A” instead of “E,” is a prized round in my collection!

The only way to prove or disprove the above would be if research could determine whether or not .30 Carbine and 9 MM Luger were loaded on the same line and basic machinery, off and on, at Winchester in 1943.

The second possibility is that it was done purposefully to mark a small lot of ammunition for some specific test, perhaps with an eye to product improvement. I don’t know how, at this stage, this could be proved unless test results were found that included mention of the headstamp used on the ammunition involved.

Regardless, it is a great find either way, or if made for some other reason that simply doesn’t come to mind right now. Wish I had a hundred or so boxes of that ammo to go thru myself!


#7

I agree that it is a 30 Carbine bunter. When I made the large image I noticed a rim around the WRA 46 headstamp like the bunter wasn’t as large as the case head. I can also feel this ridge with my fingernail. The finish on the case head is unusual and that also shows up on the larger image.

Mistake or intentional??? Think I’ll keep it regardless.

Cheers,
Lew


#8

Gee Lew, I thought you would want to send it to me for further opinions. It sure would look great next to my U.S.C.Co. .32 auto round with .380 headstamp and my R-P .25 auto round with .32 S&WL headstamp.

I guess I am a few days late for April Fool’s day. Well, no matter. John Moss the Fool Day is celebrated 365 days a year.


#9

Another of these WRA 43 headstamped rounds has turned up. Based on this post, a German collector looked through his white WRA box and also found a 9mm with this headstamp. His box was WRA LOT 22263. I found mine in WRA LOT 22194. That gives you a general range of boxes to look in. There are bound to be more out there.

I also looked through WRA LOT 22311 and didn’t find one.

Good luck!!! There is bound to be a partial box of these headstamped rounds out there somewhere.

Cheers,
Lew