Some 9 mm issues

Some cartridges keep on puzzling me so I throw it on line.

Can someone date the Geco (9mm Luger)? It came to me among German WWII 9 mm. And what about the meaning of the ‘symbols’ at 9 and 3 o’clock? Magnetic bullet.

And what about the 9 mm dummy of Winchester? Something special or just another (dull) dummy? Magnetic head, rubber ‘primer’ and wooden filling. Two opposite holes in the case.

This 9 mm seems to me a Browning 9 mm long according my measurements. But what about the headstamp? Unknown for me…Or is it some reload-brass? Magnetic bullet.

The symbols on the Geco 9x19 are just the year code. Here 1965.

Fantastic! Thank you, Alex!

In my opinion, your WRA 9mm Dummy round is home made, or perhaps made up by a gunsmith just to use as a functional dummy. Outside chance it is a non-US dummy made up on an American case, although its crudity makes me doubt that.

Your 9 mm Browning Long (you ID of caliber is correct) was made by Hirtenberg, of Austria. There are two box labels commonly found with this ammo:

60 Stück
Browning Pistolen Patronen
Kal. 9 mm lang


50 cartruchos
para pistol Browning
cal. 9 mm alargar
(9 mm automatico)

Both boxes have blue labels and are of identical construction. The Spanish-language label does not show any factory name. The ammunition in both boxes is identical.

Thank you, gentlemen. Again, some mysteries (to me) have been solved.

daqjans, John M is right on the WRA 9M-M dummy, it is “home” made. I saw quite a few of these rounds off and on in the UK back in the mid-1970s, the consensus by guys like Herb Woodin, Peter Labbett and others is that these were made up as dummies by the British Home Guard. My first one was from Ted Molyneaux (spelling is wrong I think), whose father was a Major in the Home Guard during WWII and carried a Sten. The first box of G B headstamped 9mm (DWM for Bolivia in 1930s) was also from Ted and it was a box issued to his father. I still don’t understand why they went to the trouble of converting the bullet in the dummy to a HP!!!

There are other variations of this Home Guard dummy though yours is the most common. The three other variations I know of are:

  • Primer pocket filled with lead, red wood bullet-actually a dowl with the tip rounded into a 9mm ogive and stained red

  • Lead filled primer pocket. Cast filled with a brass rod rounded into a bullet shape

-Fired primer, two small holes in the case, wood spacer in case, three stab crimps to hold in the bullet. This last one is the least common and came from a different source so I can’t be as confident that it is made by and for the Home Guard.



My one question regarding your reply is “where did they get the hollow point bullets.” I don’t recall any British commercial 9 mm Para ammo with HP bullets, nor military. Seems an odd choice for a quasi-military dummy. Surprised they even needed them with the plethora of dummy cartridges made in England during the war.

Strange stuff. I could have made a mint in England at that time. I can make dummy 9 mm rounds that are a heck of a lot better put together than that round pictured appears to have ever been. So could any other competent reloader.

John, The round pictured is a dug-up from the appearance. Mine is in pretty fair shape. The bullet was clearly not made as a HP. The tip has been flattened and the hole drilled, and not exactly centered.

The Home Guard flourished in the 1939-1941 period from what I have been told, when the UK was under threat of invasion and before the US fully joined the war effort. My understanding is that the Home Guard units were pretty much out of the mainstream with most focus on the British Army and Navy (and of course the RAF). They had to do a lot of stuff for themselves, and there was nothing “official” about these dummies, but rather were made up by different Home Guard units to their own design. At least this is the impression from what I was told. I think the units did some things just to give their members something to do beside guard duty, etc. I suspect most of these rounds were made from fired cases. They are about as “official” as some of the stuff the US National Guard units bought and took to Iraq.

I agree that a HP bullet dummy is an odd choice for a quasi-military dummy. Would love to know the story. The bullet in my round has some dings in it, but is clearly not a fired bullet.

I wonder if similar dummies show up in other calibers??? Perhaps some of our UK members can shed more light on this entire subject.


I agree that a HP bullet dummy is an odd choice for a quasi-military dummy. Would love to know the story.


I think that this dummy was probably made into a dummy by the Home Guard or one of the many other units. Many years later somebody found it took out the original bullet and stuck a HP bullet in it.


I think the HP bullet is original to the dummy and not a replacement. As mentioned above, it is clearly a FMJ bullet that has had the tip flattened slightly and then drilled to give it a hollow point. I have probably seen 10 or 15 of these rounds since I found my first one in the mid-1970s and all have the identical HP. I have never seen one with a FMJ bullet. Doesn’t appear to make a lot of sense, but I suspect somebody had a logic for it once upon a time.