I was sorting through some new additions to my Soviet M43 collection and wondering in what numbers M43 (Soviet 7.62x39) ammo was produced in its early days in the 40’s and early 50’s
In a large batch of mixed sovet M43 ammo ( a few k rounds) I have not come across any 1940’s dated 7.62x39, so i dont think it was produced in any real quantity until the 50’s for that simple reason. My earliest examples are 1950, then it seems to really start picking up in 1951. I once thought that these early rounds that appear to be brass were actually bress cased untill i noticed that a magnet sticks to the case all over. I have also noticed that 1959 seems to have very little M43 production from all Soviet factories in comparison for some reason as well. Every other decade and/or timeframe besides the 40’s seems to be repersented in this particular mix to some extent.
This particular batch was Isralei pickup from Lebanon and the PLO that the Israleis recently sold off. It is a mix of Soviet, Egyptian, Chinese, Syrian, Polish, Hungarian, East German, Yugoslavian and Bulgarian, in that order most to least.
But back to my point,
I know the RPD-44 was the first real testbed for the M43 round and said to have seen limited use on the eastern front of WWII, and also that the SKS-45 may or may not have seen limited service as an experimental production prototype in the closing days of the eastern front.
Does anyone know when mass production of the M43 round really got going? as in how common are 40’s marked cases? was it pretty much still in testing through the 1940’s? What would really answer my questions would be some production figures of the Soviets M43 production broken down by factories and years starting from its inception in 1943.
And as a side note, i have come across some NK/1966 Igman produced former Yugoslavian 7.62x39 rounds that are loaded with an M43 projectile verses the standard M67 that the Yugoslavs used. When did they Yugoslavians start producing M43? Was it as early as their first domesticly produced firearms in that caliber (1959?) or even earlier? They obviously stopped in 1967.
-Thanks for any info, im just trying to fill in gaps in my understanding of 7.62x39 and its use/production over the last 66 or so years.