Turkish Peabody-Martini cartridge cases?


Hi everyone,

A question from a newbie!

I teach in Ankara, Turkey, and am locally known as a bayonet collector. One of my students, working on the principle that pointed things go together with the bangedy-bang ones believed that means I could automatically identify a group of cartridge cases he brought to me - I assume found in Turkey but I need to check.

They look to me to be Peabody-Martin ones, with a height of 5.3 mm, an internal diameter at the top of about .75, and diameter at the base of 1.4 mm. All have the same type of percussion cap, as shown on the left in the photograph except the one on the right, which is the case on the extreme right in the next photograph, which as a newbie I’ll have to show in a new post!

I’d appreciate any information anyone can provide.



And here are the cases - the one on the right has the odd percussion cap…


Good morning, Trajan , welcome to the Forum.

These do not look like Turkish Martini Peabody cases to me. Only good measurement can give certainty.
Furthermore, the third case from the left on your picture seems also different from the others.
Percussionsystem? That case is without primer. No odd percussion. Berdan primed. Very common for military cartridges.


These are looking much like 7.62x54R.

Can you maybe clean up the headstamps and show them?


Thanks Duqjans. Ys, that third cartridge is different - but I am new to this field so a pardon requested! I could have sworn from descriptions, etc., that the bottle-shape of the others was Peabody-Martini.

OK, the Berdan primer I know a little about (I think!), S this had a percussion cap inserted before firing? But the others have integral percussion caps? Didn’t the P-Martini use the Berdan system???



I’ll have a go at cleaning - any suggestions? Can’t see any sign of headstamp markings but will look through them all carefully.

7.62x54R … That doesn’t sound right for these! That is a narrower cartridge used in the Turkish Mauser 1890 and 1903 isn’t it? I have some dated cases from 1908-1918 that I assume are that size and which are narrower than these ones. The Turkish M.1887 used a 9.5x60R, I understand - which sounds bigger.

BUT, remember, I am a complete ignoramus at all of this… I claim no expertise in these matters whatever! (Give me a bayonet though and then we are talking!) So, for example, I gather that the ‘45R’ and the ‘60R’ indicate bore size for the bullet and a rimmed cartridge - but what are the ‘&.62’ and ‘9.5’ - the diameter of cartridge at the base?



7.62x54R is mostly seen used in Russian and Soviet rifles.

7.62 mm diameter for projectile, 54 mm case length, R - Rimmed Case
A few examples:

9.5 mm diameter for projectile, 60 mm case length, R - Rimmed Case
An example:

9.5x60R has a much longer neck and a more gentle shoulder compared to 7.62x54R. Your calipers (if they are in millimeters!) read that the case is roughly 54 mm in length.


Cleaning an old and dirty cartridge. First: make sure you have a bronze brush. No iron! Make a solution of hot water with salt and vinegar. Put the case into the solution and leave it for a while, Try to clean it with the brush, rinsing in water and do this softly. Try to uncover a headstamp. If so, (not all cartridges have a headstamp) we are over halfway. Make a good picture of the headstamp and show it. And measure the case carefully with a micrometer: overall length, base diameter outside, neck diameter outside, rim diameter. EOD thinks of a 7,62x 54R… Makes (visual) sense which is not enough. And Berdan? Most of military cartridges of WWI and II were Berdan.
And also: all of us did start for once as newbies. Read the website of the IAA : it has a good introduction to ammunition.


The case with the hole at the back is where the primer goes, as seen on the other cases. These were normally a very tight fit, but sometimes would back out on firing, or would be removed by someone who would reload them with new primer, powder and bullet.
A primer is basically a form of percussion cap, so you are correct in your basic understanding of the purpose, just a bit off on terminology and the difference between it and the others (basically no difference except the primer is missing).

Many different military forces have fought in that area over the years, so making the correct match between the artifact and the source can be difficult. Add the tendency for soldiers to be souvenir collectors and you may get captured items from battlefields far away left behind somewhere else.


Ok, thanks - now I am getting there (I think!) So, the thickness / diameter of the case is not relevant in this form of terminology - it is diameter of projectile (the bullet) and the case length. Apologies for being a dummy: apart from living in Turkey where the law is very strict on foreigners having firearms, it is more than 40 years since I held that old stand-by for basic training, the SMLE, and so…!!!


Cheers for that advice - will do when my wife is not around…:-)


Oh, I see now. So, basically what I am missing on that one is simply the actual primer. I had noticed that some of the other cases have primers in place that do not have indentations in them… Does that mean they are promed but not fired, even though there is ‘bullet’ and no material in the case except dirt?

Once again, excuse the ‘dumbish’ questions, but I have’nt dealt with live ammunition for more than 40 years, and am completely new to cartridge case ‘collecting’! So, all and any help and comments gratefully accepted!



Cased with undented primers and the bullet and powder missing may reflect someone disassembling them to get the powder to make fireworks or more sinister devices. Or, it may be that they were in a fire and reached a temperature where the powder ignited, forcing the bullet out of the case. Usually the primer will ignite first, and/or be blown out of the back of the case if the powder ignites. Small arms ammo in fires do not usually burst with a spectacular explosion shredding the case apart, but more of the bullet just being pushed out and since it does not have to be pushed through a barrel the gas pressure vents to the atmosphere easily from the open case.


JohnS, I am beginning to wonder if they might indeed have been in a fire - the cases (although not yet cleaned) are rather discoloured.

I have memories from the early 1950’s of my older bothers claiming to detonate - i.e., fire - cartridges using a hammer and chisel with the cartridge held in a screw-vice… Is that really possible? Should I be careful with these?



Any suggestions on the proportions of salt and vinegar and water? The cases are not magnetic.

I did take a nail brush and soapy water to one of the bunch and it did reveal a mark - looks to be a Greek or Russian letter for ‘G’ or a regular letter (Greek also?) for ‘T’ at 12:00, with a “1.5” at 18:00… Not clear enough for a photograph yet…

Obviously, when cleaned, as they are not Peabody-Martini, I’ll open a new thread on the results - and bother you helpful chaps for more on their ID!!!

In the meantime, though - anyone have a photograph of a fired Peabody-Martini M.74 case? I could do with one for some research I am doing…

Many thanks Dqjans and all others for your help and comments!



Proportions? A liter of water, a soup spoon of salt and shake firmly with the vinegar. Stir it (no shake) and leave the case for a while in it. A nail brush is too soft for removing dirt. And yes, it is a good idea to try it out. In the meanwhile: a view to some Peabody-Martini cartridges.belastingen weergave 1


Dear Trajan,

IN reply to your enquiry about the cartridge cases, they are most probably 7,62x54R (Imperial Russian) cases,used from Late WW I to the 1930s;
The Ottoman Empire, during WW I, received thousands of Mosin Nagant M1891 7,62 Rifles from Germany, which had captured them from the Russians at various Battles in 1914-15. They also received Millions of rounds of captured ammunition (Brass cased). After WWI, with the formation of the Turkiye Cumhuryeti, in 1922, Ataturk negotiated with Lenin of the new Bolshevik gov’t of Russia, to settle the Armenian Border question with Turkey. As part of the deal, The Turkish Army received a large number of Russian M1891 Rifles.

Turkey used these Russian rifles (from Germany and Russia) till the early 1930s, and disposed of many of them to the Kingdom of Afghanistan, amongst other Islamic states in the 1920s as part of Ataturk’s Policy of helping middle eastern nations to achieve independence from foreign Pressures and influence.
Others of these rifles were exchanged with Finland for Mauser rifles and Timber and Paper Products and other goods.
I would advise you to go to Gunboards.com, a forum which has a lot of information about Turkish rifle History,
and also Parallax’s Curio & Relic board, which has my analysis of Turkish serial Numbers 1929-1955 of all the rifles made, converted, assembled by the Askeri Fabrikalar organisation of Ankara and its various sub factories; ( Doc AV Turkish Serial Survey); there are other texts there with further history.

The questions raised by your find give us a lot of detail of History (Political, Military and Industrial) about the WW I-Republic period to explain in a simple Post. I have a large collection of Turkish Mauser and other rifles, from a M67/12 Peabody, a M1887 Mauser through to an ATF 1954 refurbished WW I German Mauser (Askeri Tufecki Fabrika)

I also have a couple of German marked, Turkish re-marked MN 91 rifles (“Kal 7,6”) in Turkish script ( Pre-1929 change to Roman Letters.)
There are several very good Biographies of Mustapha Kemal “Ataturk”, which give a lot of detail about his involvement with organising both the Turkish Army and in the early 1920s, ASFA, as well as his Foreign Policy aims and assistance to middle eastern countries, as well as Trade relations with Europe’s “NEW Republics” (Finland, Poland, Czechoslovakia, etc.;).

Brisbane, Australia.


DocAV’s posts are always extremely informative, and I learn a lot from them. THANK YOU!


Hello one and all - sorry for the delay in replying and to say ‘Thank you!’ for the help and information you have all provided. A little matter called work interferred with my spare time!

Dugjans. Would you believe that a bronze brush is seemingly unobtainable in Ankara, Turkey? At least not at the big hardware supermarkets, so I’ll try the smaller ones in the old town… The trial cases have vegetated and gone a blackened colour…!!! BUT, see further below…

Very many thanks for the photograph of the P-M Turkish cartridge though - now I have a much better idea of what I should be looking for.

DocAV - Iyiyim - Ben teşekkür ederim! Siz? And I am sure I have come across posts of yours on Gunboards Forum? But thanks so much for your highly informative reply! I was unaware of the German-supplied M-N rifles, and know only of the surplus Gew.88’s that were sent over with some Gew.98’s in 1916-1917. My main interest is bayonets, and I have seen a fair few M-N ones here, and have bought some with German ‘Ersatz’ scabbards. So, yes, M-N cartridge cases makes sense…

Only one of the cases seems to have any form of marking, one I have not tried to clean yet. Difficult to photogaph, but it looks to be a “T” or - less likeley - a “г” at the 12:00 position, and a clear “1.5” at the 18:00 poisition. No other marks though. So, pretty certain a M-N case then?

And now to check the account of yours on serial nmbers on the Parallax’s Curio & Relic board!

Thanks again, one and all, for help, advice, and information!



OK, not the best of photographs but I hope it serves some purpose in helping to get an ID! The letter at 12:00 in some lights is like a “T”, and in others, as here, a Russian G, so “г”. The base/rim diameter is 14 mm (with calipers - might be slightly more at 142/143 mm).