Some Rare Cartridges sold at St. Louis



Aaron, very nice cartridges amd pictures, thanks for posting. Regarding the 11 mm Riera, I’m afraid that this is one of the infamous fakes that have been floating around since the 1980’s.


Without have the cartridge in my hands, I can not say roundly but I think that FEDE it´s right. During that decade, a collector had a “happy” idea of making false copies (FAKES) of this cartridge. Of course he sold this cartridges a grandiose price. For ratify his sale, even he provided to the buyer a document verifying the authenticity of the cartridge. Thanks to french collector (A. Leveau) you can discover the fraud.
I show the original patent of this cartridge.


José Juan, authentic Spanish patent drawings and sectioned examples have been available to collectors since the beginning, so these are long suspected fakes, but it seems that few are willing to admit what these really are, for whatever reason they may have; they just keep changing from hand to hand as the real thing. At one time there was even an “authenticated” cased set of pistols with seven fakes cartridges!

We must thank A. Leveau for being the first one to put in paper that these are clearly and simply nothing but fakes. I hope I’m wrong, but I’m not aware of the existence of ANY authentic Riera cartridge.




If based solely on the patent drawing discrepancy, and the word of a person who knew of some fakes being done, then there is a chance that it might still be real, unless it matches exactly with a known fake. I know that patent drawings are often not exactly aligned with what the final product looks like, even on very modern projectiles. Some fakes were certainly made, but did the person doing the fakes base them on a real cartridge that simply happened not match the patent drawing possibly? Probably the only way to be certain would be to find a sealed / abandoned cache somewhere from the correct era, with some verified provenance to be sure that they are from that era.


The problem is that known examples are constructed the same way and they are not unknown cigar box finds; they were offered already identified as Riera cartridges from a person that had a pair of Riera pistols. However, these guns are designed to work with the patent cartridge, not with the examples sold to collectors.

Also, I saw one of these same cartridges once offered as a “Genhart”, but does not agree with this patent either. No idea why someone decided that a fake Riera would be a Genhart.


9 & 360 Mars should be very very similar, aren’t they?


About the 11 m Riera:

A french guy (dead now) found a box containing the pistol AND the mold to make the bullets.
He knew how was looking the ctge but perhaps not all the details.
Therefore he made some of them and just put a metal pin instead of an empty tube with fulminate.



To keep the thread rolling I thought to post my two rarest prizes from SLICS. Not really the same class as above, but actually more precious to me and my collection.
Left is a nice .345 Machine Rifle ball round, and right is a Swiss 7.5x38 tracer. I saw one years ago and passed on it, but in about 20 years I never saw another…until this one.


I have 2 that have the purple base with the following h/s 6 T T 53, all purple base, brass case, full ring crimp,
4 T T 54, all purple base, brass case, full ring crimp, and this bullet type FMJPTD, armor piercing, nickel jacket, steel core
I got these as AP rounds is there anything else that shows that it is Tracer round.


The color didn’t come out exact; the base is actually red.


Thank You



The 9mm MARS and the 360 MARS are identical. When the Mars Syndicate tried to market the gun in Paris they change the name from the earlier imperial 360 to the metric 9mm.
I’ve wondered about it before so have spent years measuring every 9mm & 360 specimen I came across and they are all identical (whether FMJ or the JHP). With minor differences between manufacturers of course.