Unknown .303 Ball round


#1

In my collection I have a ball MK II with a strange bullet, headstamped; K C II. see image

It is a sawn off round nose MK II bullet with 4 extra cuttings in the jacket.

Is this done by a hunter to improve the stopping power? (It certainly looks like that) Or is this a genuine variation from the Brittish army?

thanks, Joost


#2

Certainly not a British military round. It is probably one of the many patent expanding bullets around at the turn of the century loaded into a surplus Kynoch case.

John P-C can probably give you an answer.

Regards
TonyE


#3

This is a common practice by hunters to make "Soft Point"
bullets out of military full metal jacket rounds. It is a VERY dangerous thing to do. If the lead is exposed at the end inside the cartridge case (and most are), quite often when fired only the lead core leaves the barrel. The jacket is then lodged in the barrel and can cause a barrel rupture when the next round is fired.

Tony–I think the clue here is the statement that the tip is “sawn off”.


#4

A well known case where a commercial attempt was made to convert military ball cartridges to sporting use by cutting the metal jacket off of the bullet tip was the National Cartridge Company of Toronto. Their cartridges tended to leave the bullet jacket in the rifle bore, as Ron pointed out, and millions of their modified cartridges were ordered destroyed. Full boxes with mixed military headstamps turn up ocassionally.


#5

Gentlemen,

thanks for the info…

I never realised the risks of firing a bullet like this.
I agree it’s most likely an adapted bullet for hunting.

Joost.


#6

Until recently FMJ military rifle bullets were not allowed for sporting purposes in Italy,even if they were loaded on surplus ammo.
Military ammunition imported to Italy had the bullet noses scraped exposing the lead inside


#7

[quote=“Ron Merchant”]
Tony–I think the clue here is the statement that the tip is “sawn off”.[/quote]

Good thinking Batman! I must learn to read.

Having said that, it is quite common to find commercial bullets on Kynoch Mark II cases and it is not that easy to slit the jackets neatly.

I fully concur with your warning about the practice of cutting the tips of military bullets. I will try to find a piece of sectioned barrel I have with a bullet jacket embedded in the bulge after a friend kindly put a few rounds of cut down military rounds through one of my rifles, and post it as a warning.

Regards
Tony


#8

Another question here is whether or not the nose has be actually cut off, or whether it is just a flat tip. We have not seen a picture of the nose. The “Schlitze-type” bullet was loaded in .303 in England, not just in German rounds. I had both Eley and Kynoch headstamped .303s, when I collected them, with flat-point Schlitze bullets in them, and while they had the profile of a round-nose bullet with the the tip cut off flat, they most certianly were no sawn off.

The definitive answer would probably require pulling the bullet from the round in question and looking to see if the base is open, or enclosed in the bullet jacket. That is, unless the tip is very obviously been cut off.

I am not challenging the fact it may be cut off. I am just saying that factory bullets of this general description exist, and that no picture of the tip was included, and Sir Joost has not mentioned if he was using a slang term to describe the flat tip, or whether in truth, it has obviously been cut off as an alteration. If so, then it is an altered bullet. If not obviously cut off, it may be a real Schlitze bullet. that simply should be well defined here to close off this thread, rather than left hanging, open to question.


#9

The exact and correct name for this type of bullet is the ‘Tweedie-Allport’ Express .303. The name is derived from construction covered by Tweedie’s 1891 patent to reverse the normal military bullet - so this bullet has a flat enclosed base and lead exposed at the nose - usually flat. The slits in the envelope were patented by Allport in 1893 to aid expansion. The lead was soldered into the cupro-nickel envelope (an idea previously patented by Lorenze) and these ‘Tweedie-Allport’ bullets were factory made by The British Munitions Company, Millwall, London (which was owned by Lorenze). They were bought wholesale & loaded into any convenient .303 cartridge case. At this time British patents lasted for 14 years & after this time anyone could make them without infringing patents. I have many of these types of bullets and pulled them all - the bases are solid. (If they were not - they would be infringing Bertie-Clay’s patent of 1897) Also have them without the slits and these are called ‘Tweedie Express’ .303 bullets.


#10

Tony–I think the clue here is the statement that the tip is “sawn off”

Thank you John!
Not so dumb after all!

Regards
Tony


#11

to complete all the information, here an image of the tip.

It is either sawn or turned off…

Seeing the tip, do you think this is such a ‘Tweedie-Allport’ Express ?

And why are the slits so irregular? One should expect more quality of a factory made slit

thanks to you all.

Joost


#12

Checked my samples - have 4 with flat tip and many more with round-nose soft-point with slits - all come under Tweedie-Allport patents. Attached quick photos (excuse poor quality) of two flat tips (hst: ‘. ELEY . LONDON’ & ‘K DWM K 453’ ) + soft-nose type (hst: ’ K VI ’ ). The quality of work seems to vary - the Eley case having the longer finer cut slits on the flat tips. The slits on the soft-nose Tweedie are of poor quality similar to Sir Joost’s example.
Maybe Sir Joost has a fake - but unlikely - difficult to make & why? This is not a rare cartridge - not difficult to find -why not pull out the bullet Sir Joost and check if the base is enclosed?



303 British Dum Dum ou Comercial Soft Point?