Two more .303 questions

The cartridge on the left appears to be a drill round based on the Mk VI bullet but it doesn’t seem to quite match up with descriptions I’ve found. Also it looks like the neck was crimped with a pair of pliars which seems odd. The cartridge on the right has a red band on the case and I don’t know what that means. Thanks in advance, Harvey

I would agree the first is a homemade dummy and the second is a Canadian match round from 1945, although the headstamp is 44 it is actually from the 45 competition. There are from 1921 to 1945 as far as I know and all have different coloured band sizes, amounts and colours.


I would think there’s not much point in keeping the “fake” drill round then?

Could be whoever had it, maybe the bullet was loose and pliers were handy, not hving a proper set of dies?

Holes look like home job to me. If I didn’t have this particular HS in my collection, I would keep it until I could replace it with an unmolested round.

Why call this a fake?

If someone intentionally made this as a dummy/drill cartridge emulating a standard military issue dummy/drill cartridge and then used their "home made dummy " as a dummy cartridge for gun function purposes (say a gunsmith) or for display purposes, is it a fake? Just something to consider for what it worth.


Brian I called it a fake because it was sold to me as an original military drill round. I’m a novice at cartridge collecting so I fell for it. That said does it look like any particular cartridge? If so it could be a place holder as Mayhem suggests.


PS What’s an HS?


Ahhh, well that’s a whole different story, unfortunately, for you! Hope you are able to get your money back.


Hi Harvey - sorry, I should have expanded HS. Some collectors (myself included) collect by HS, which can be equally rewarding and frustrating!

Here is what I believe this round to be (either original or not).

Source: Edwards, A.O. (2011) Headstamp Guide .303 inch British Service Ammunition. p. 78.

As stated above, drill and dummy rounds (also blank and some special purpose rounds) were often made using rejected cases. As such, there are numerous variations out there. In this instance, it can be really difficult to spot a factory made from a ‘home made’.

For me, the holes are large and rather ragged for what I would expect for a factory made round. Of course, if in a rush, they may just have banged them out without much care. My specimen is shown below:

Thanks Mayhem. It’s what I was looking for.


Mayhem, I agree with the cartridge you believe it to be a representation of but I don’t think it is original but if it is why would they make the holes larger and butcher the case/neck. The one you have pictured from your collection, does it have the 4 drilled holes. I just can’t see any in the photo, it is also a very interesting headstamp. I have never seen a DA with the Broad arrow after. EDIT - "I have just zoomed in and can make out the C now :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes: "

all the best


Thanks Tony - I don’t believe the OP’s round to be original for the same reasons that you have stated but I didn’t want to label it a fake, as I don’t think anyone knows who made it or for what purpose. Brian raised a good point and perhaps the guy who sold it to the OP did so based upon information he was given. It was late and I was tired, and didn’t want to open the whole fake versus replica, versus made for purpose discussion. Judging by the head, I believe that it has been used multiple times to cycle a rifle. This is why the specific D and L stamped cases make ID so much easier. :mag:

I’ll have to check the round that I posted as looking at that image, it certainly looks to be devoid of holes and most likely a misidentification on my part, which is good because I can amend my records and begin the search for an Expedient WW1, Mark IV type!

Daren, Has your round shown have just a bullet jacket.? Looks to me like a Canadian version of the Dummy/Drill Mk. 1

I’ll have to check and report back to you John.