Tempting fate


A question for you more experienced collectors: I just realised I may have two Beobachtungs-patrone in my 8x57 collection. Black annulus, the right lot number and year, but sadly only very faint traces of black on the bullets. The question is then: does a B-patrone rattle?
I can take pictures if you want.
If one look at the Polte drawings published elsewere it should, since there is that small plunger for igniting the marking charge.
It’s an old habit that carefully shaking a cartridge for the faint sound of the powder inside… I hate squib fires.


If not oxidised inside, the B-Patrone projectile will rattle. Not a sure way to tell, but not a bad way. I wouldn’t rattle it too violently though. Remember, what is rattling is the “firing pin.” Total cartridge weight for a B-Patrone would be approximately 378 grains. Thisd is for one loaded in a brass case. Some, but not many in comparison to brass, were loaded in steel cases.

John Moss


No. 1 (P154 S* 4 40) weighs 374,4 grains and No. 2 (P413 S* 4 40) weighs 374,5 grains, That’s close enough in my opinion.
Thanks for the warning, an aquaintance did learn the loud way some years ago when he used a RCBS hammer to dissassemble a 8x56R B-patrone and got his hammer (and hearing, for a few days) ruined.


Those weights would be consistent with B-Patrone, as are the headstamps. Don’t think you need to shake, rattle and roll these cartridges to listen for the striker!

John Moss


Would the following headstamp also be correct for B-patronen:

eda S* 2 42

I got these from an auction, they were part of a belt I bought, I really only wanted the belt, I didn’t have that kind in my collection. The ammunition was badly corroded, and just by coincident, I heard the rattle when I tried to clean the ammunition. There’s no trace of either black annulus, or black on the bullet, but they clearly rattle.

I also have one in good condition, with the headstamp: auy S* 1 43


I still remember when I saw a B-patrone for the first time.A friend of mine and me were trying to identify what kind of load could had been ( we didn’t know what kind of cartridge was) .Handling and shaking it we just heard that curios “click click” .

Luckily I had identified it before putting it into a bullet puller!


psg1 - your round is very likely a B-Patrone. However, the headstamp is not “eda,” which doesn’t exist as a headstamp on 7.9 x 57, but rather “edq” which represents the maker Deutsche Waffen-und Munitionsfabriken A.-G., Lübeck-Schlutup of Germany. Cases with your headstap do appear loaded as B-Patrone, so their is no inconsitency in your own findings. They probably loaded the cartridge as well as made the case, but of course, the headstamp only relates to the case manufacture.

John Moss


Thanks for your reply, and you’re right, I missread the q for an a. Those rounds vere found in a German u-boat bunker in Trondheim after the war, and has obviously been laying outside for a while.

I must say the stories of people putting these in a bullet hammer, makes me laugh. It’s good they didn’t get any longterm injuries.


The guy who got his ears ringing had a thread about it on a nordic gun-forum and put this picture up for us to see:
Published here with permission.
The case from the blown cartridge probably landed several miles away…


What do you think this ?



[quote]I also have one in good condition, with the headstamp: auy S* 1 43
[/quote]Grüneberger (auy) made four lot 1 types in 1943: SmE (blue annulus) 2 B-patrone (black annulus (1 of them is Trop and have black sealant on the case mouth)) and 1 platz (no primer crimps, easy to recognize) So if it rattles, be careful :-)