Soviet blackened primers


#1

I have or have seen several 7.62x39mm and 5.45x39mm ball and tracer cartridges with a dark grey or black primer. They all seem to date from the early 1980’s to the early 1990’s. Any idea what this signifies? I tested two 7.62x39mm ball cartridges, both headstamped “711 87”, one with a plain brass primer and one with a blackened primer. Both were corrosive primed, so the theory about the blackened primer being non-corrosive was busted.

Any ideas?

AKMS


#2

Additional protection, at packing in to water-proof paper packages, on four packs in everyone. Without the steel tightly rolled up boxes.

Ghost.


#3

Ghost, I understand you as saying the blackened primers are for extra protection when the cartridges are packed in special paper for use without the sealed steel can? I have 7.62x39mm PS ball cartridges headstamped “711 81” that came right out of a sealed metal can, identical to all the other Soviet type sealed cans I have ever seen and packed in the standard 20 round cardboard boxes. Could you give more information please?

AKMS


#4

I have a Czech lacquered steel cased 7.62x54R blank stamped “bxn 62” this has a blackened primer. I was wondering the other day if there was a reason for it.


#5

Falcon,

The vast majority of Czech. military 7.62x39mm, 7.62x45mm and 7.62x54r cartridges I have seen have a blackened primer. This just seems to be how they do it. Is it for “extra protection”? Very well may be. These Soviet cartridges’ blackened primers are very, very similar in appearance. More of a chemical blackening than a lacquer or paint-like coating. I’ve also seen at least one North Korean 7.62x39mm cartridge with an identical blackened primer and wondered if it was supplied by either the Soviets or the Czechs.

AKMS


#6

The Czech black primers are non-corrosion types and are not to be confused with the Russian ones.

Czech primers seem to heve been exported since I know a presumably Cuban fired case (CWS, no hs, orange primer annulus) with such a primer.

The blackened Russian primers, once being produced, might have ended up in any packing since only the 120rd plastic covered cardboard packs (almost water proof) are supposed to have these cartridges.


#7

EOD, are you saying that all of the Czech. military ammunition with blackened primers since the early 1950’s is non-corrosive primed? The 7.62x39mm short range cartridges “Rd-43” type, headstamped “bxn 81” I tested were definately corrosive primed, and they have a blackened primer. Why would the Czechs be the only Warsaw Pact country to use a different primer type? Interesting that these “almost waterproof” 120 rd packs came to the US with commercial type Hollow Point ammunition with plain brass primers and the first commercial 5.45 ammunition from Russia had blackened primers and were in 25 round boxes. Do the military issue 120 rd. boxes have any markings on them? Any pictures available? I always thought this was just commercial packaging!

AKMS


#8

Blanket comments about Soviet ammo are nearly always going to be in error. The Soviet Union and Warsaw pact operated in a way that defies blanket statements. Now that “commercial” production has resumed( make that-begun- as the NEP really didn’t get off to much of a start as concerns “commercial” ammunition production) the situation is even more complicated. What we consider as “milspec” in our economy was a “goal” in the Warsaw Pact countries rather than a requirement. ALL ABOARD WITH YOUR ARGUMENTS. Analysis of specimens is more helpfull than reliance on documents.


#9

[quote=“AKMS”]EOD, are you saying that all of the Czech. military ammunition with blackened primers since the early 1950’s is non-corrosive primed? The 7.62x39mm short range cartridges “Rd-43” type, headstamped “bxn 81” I tested were definately corrosive primed, and they have a blackened primer. Why would the Czechs be the only Warsaw Pact country to use a different primer type? Interesting that these “almost waterproof” 120 rd packs came to the US with commercial type Hollow Point ammunition with plain brass primers and the first commercial 5.45 ammunition from Russia had blackened primers and were in 25 round boxes. Do the military issue 120 rd. boxes have any markings on them? Any pictures available? I always thought this was just commercial packaging!

AKMS[/quote]

This is what the Czechs are saying, I never tried anything to figure if it is or not.
The Czechs had actually quite some own habits when it comes to ammo.

The Russian military issue 120rd carton looks a bit like a milk pack (almost white paper) and the markings are a continous print off a big roll of paper, means the black square containing the caliber and qty. is printed on the box like 5 times to make sure it will appear visible independend from the paper cut.


#10

This alternate packaging is very interesting. Do we know what the purpose of it was? Is this like the sealed vinyl/PVC “battlepacks” that we see from other countries where individual soldiers could carry a smaller issue of ammunition while keeping it protected? Were all types and calibers packaged this way or just the 7.62x39 ball?

AKMS


#11

[quote=“AKMS”]This alternate packaging is very interesting. Do we know what the purpose of it was? Is this like the sealed vinyl/PVC “battlepacks” that we see from other countries where individual soldiers could carry a smaller issue of ammunition while keeping it protected? Were all types and calibers packaged this way or just the 7.62x39 ball?

AKMS[/quote]

Also 5,45х39 ball and 5,45х39 tracer.

Ghost.


#12

Ghost, the image seems to be invalid. Could you fix it somehow? (Pozalusta)


#13

OK! Try again, please… :-)
Link: i56.photobucket.com/albums/g181/ … rt_box.jpg

Ghost.


#14

Sorry, no change.


#15

Any chance that this type of packaging was used as a result of Soviets’ experiences in Afghanistan?

AKMS


#16

There are many stories in the Russian Army telling that plenty of thier soldier died next to full ammo tins but with empty magazines.
Who ever once opened a Russian tin with the can opener knows what I mean.
So your assumption may be right. I just would not limit it to experiences in Afghanistan only where the small-arm-engagements between the Russians and the Afghans were rather short. Their recon guys and spec ops carried the ammo already unpacked and the only problem for them was to run out of ammo in general. If this happened what followed was sad, they usually blew themselves up with grenades to escape torture (having to die anyway). I heard stories from Russian Mi-24 chopper pilots who flew in Afghanistan and Chechnya describing some cases where their guys had surrendered - what I heard was nothing I would like to repeat here.