Unknown 10mm/0.40 inch x 70mm/2.75 inch----.40 Enfield


#1

Unknown 10mm/0.40 inch x 70mm/2.75 inch calibre cartridge.

I have this fine looking cartridge, in excellent condition, which needs a name! It is brass cased, with a copper primer, no headstamp and with a paper patched lead bullet. There is no shoulder to the case, just a straight taper to the beginning of the neck.

The dimensions are:

Cartridge overall length: 87.2mm (3.43”)
Case Length: 69.9mm (2.75”)
Bullet diameter (over patch): 10.35-10.4mm (0.407”-0.409”)
Bullet diameter (in front of patch): 10.1mm (0.398”)
Neck diameter: 11.0mm (0.433”)
Neck length: 16.0mm (0.630”)
Head diameter (in front of rim): 14.8mm (0.583”)
Rim diameter: 16.75mm (0.659”)
Rim thickness: 1.65mm (0.065”)

So ladies and gentlemen, what have I got here please? P.S. I just checked, the case is not bent as it may appear in the image above, I think that it rolled a trifle on the scanner part way through the scan!

gravelbelly


#2

Dave - It appears to be one of the versions of the .4 British, sometimes referred to as the .402 Enfield. originally intended for the Martini rifle to replace the .577/450 it was considered about as small a calibre and as high a velocity as could practically be achieved with a black powder round. It was only ever used for a short period in machine guns. various calibres bewteen .38 and .42 were tried.

Check Peter’s Brtish Military Ammo book.

Here is a photo of different types.

Regards
TonyE


#3

Dave, great cartridge! I agree with Tony that this is a .4 inch British round but it doesn’t seems to match any of the reported military designs. Its dimensions, however, fits closely those of the sporting .400 Westley Richards which also exist without headstamp. The .4 inch Enfield-Martini M./85 made by DWM is also very similar.


#4

[quote=“TonyE”]Dave - It appears to be one of the versions of the .4 British, sometimes referred to as the .402 Enfield. originally intended for the Martini rifle to replace the .577/450 it was considered about as small a calibre and as high a velocity as could practically be achieved with a black powder round. It was only ever used for a short period in machine guns. various calibres bewteen .38 and .42 were tried.

Check Peter’s Brtish Military Ammo book.

Here is a photo of different types.

Regards
TonyE

[/quote]

Thanks Tony,

That’s another book that I must get, I only have the 1945 onwards book by Peter. The round that you show on the right of your picture has a similar case shape to my round, how do the dimensions compare?

gravelbelly


#5

I have a photo that Peter White took several years ago when he visited Woodin Labs. It shows eleven (11) variations.
I’ll send Bill & Peter an e-mail asking if I can post it here.


#6

Heard back form Bill with an OK so here is a low quality photo.


#7

Thanks Tony, Fede and Pete, I am happy that this is a .40" Enfield, it fits neatly into the story of the development of a replacement of the .45 Martini-Henry round and now sits with the .300" 1886 and .303" 1888 Rubin rounds I posted recently.

gravelbelly