Unusual 7.62x54R Tip Color


#1

I’ve had these 2 rounds for many years, and have been unable to find an explanation of this tip color in any resource on the cartridge, red over silver. Any ideas?

Copper-washed steel cases
Headstamp 188 E (raised)


#2

Could it be that someone was doing his fingernails and accidentally swiped regular silver tips with a brush?


#3

Vlad

That color is so retro. I quit using it in the 90s.

IHMSA

In the US, red over silver was the color ID for APIT. I don’t know if that would necessarily apply to your cartridges.

Ray


#4

Could they be some sort of “gun show” reloads probably sold as top secret CIA sniper armour piercing incendiary high explosive heat seeking nuclear bullets?


#5

I beleive these are someone’s attempt to make a regular LPS ball cartridge look like something else. I’ve seen these exact cartridges asked about on other boards in the past, and as I recall, they were always acquired at a gun show…

The red tip color is too short to be authentic. When you look at authentic two-color com-bloc tip color codes, the two bands of color are usually longer.

Red over silver is not a Soviet color code to my knowledge either…

AKMS


#6

These two were not gunshow rounds, they came from a very reputable cartridge dealer of military ammo, back in 1993. He did not describe them as anything in particular in his list. I was into tip colors back then, and I thought the combo would be a cool addition.


#7

IHMSA

I don’t know why I called you Matt in my first post. That is obviously not your name. You’re IHMSA. ;)

Since you have two of those cartridges and there are suggestions that they may be fakes, you should consider pulling one bullet. Maybe you can eliminate a lot of possibilities by doing that. That’s what I would do.

Ray


#8

I have one of these that I picked up out of a junk box at a gunshow in Oklahoma back in the late '80s or early '90s. Mine and every other one I’ve seen has the same headstamp as yours. I’ve never been able to figure out what it is, but someone made enough of them that they ended up all over the place. No one that I can find ever had more than a couple. I still lean towards someone here making it for some reason but I can’t prove it either way.


#9

I ended up with one of those as well. Mine came in a ‘sampler’ belt of 54R that I bought from BigSkySurplus.com several years back.
I initially thought that someone had loaded the round with a US APIT .30cal bullet(if there ever was such a thing), or something similar, as several of the other rounds had been loaded with .308 commercial or military bullets. There were even two rounds loaded with the green over white tipped .30 caliber frangible bullets.
However, when I finally broke down and pulled the bullet, I found it to be a normal silver tipped LPS ball round. Someone had just put a little red paint on the end of the bullet to make it look more exotic.
I wouldn’t consider it fraudulent on the part of Big Sky Surplus though, since it wasn’t presented to me as anything special, and I am sure that they weren’t the ones who got cutesy with the red paint anyway.

-Allen


#10

I had a recently query from a CA crime lab about a 5.56 with a red over black tip. Turns out it was a Big Sky product and used M-855 (or M-856?) magnetic cored bullets which were base bored, sent to Stromain Tricknel (sp?) to have tracer installed, and some magnesium sprinkled on the base as tracer igniter, & then loaded into C J 9 Chinese brass.
No fake intended as apparently marketed to SHOOTERS as APT 5.56x45.
So perhaps a similar ‘happening’ here?


#11

[quote=“PetedeCoux”]I had a recently query from a CA crime lab about a 5.56 with a red over black tip. Turns out it was a Big Sky product and used M-855 (or M-856?) magnetic cored bullets which were base bored, sent to Stromain Tricknel (sp?) to have tracer installed, and some magnesium sprinkled on the base as tracer igniter, & then loaded into C J 9 Chinese brass.
No fake intended as apparently marketed to SHOOTERS as APT 5.56x45.
So perhaps a similar ‘happening’ here?[/quote]

Can’t vouch for the ones pictured, but that wasn’t the case with the one that I got from Big Sky Surplus. The bullet had the steel core partially exposed at the base and was virtually identical in weight, and all other aspects, to bullets from the other Soviet x54R LPS ball rounds from my collection that I compared it to.
I really don’t think that Big Sky Surplus did it themselves, though I can’t be certain of that. They did not label it, or any other rounds in the belt I received, so if they did paint it, they didn’t make any claims as to what it was.
It has been a while since I pulled it, so I am not sure if I even still have the bullet or not. I do recall that the round I had looked just like the ones in the photo and that it had the 188 factory code.

-Allen