Unusual Box of Federal 9mm


#1

Recovered a Federal black/white contract type box copyright F.C.C. 2006, end flap reads:
9mm LUGER
95 GRAIN JSP
XM9RO1
Lot number R6033F – a very odd format for Federal, R equates to 2006 matching the copyright year, 603 probably equates to (603 - 400 =) 203rd day. In the same area were boxer-primed 9mm brass cases headstamped “RG 03 (over) 9mm x 19”. No NATO mark, crimped primer, clear primer sealant. The bullet sealant left on the inside of the case indicates a bullet that wasn’t seated deeply – as one would expect a 95-grain 9mm bullet to be seated. Primers were brass (not nickel plated). I have a bunch of (NATO) FC 03 brass and their primers, crimp and sealant are identical to these RG 03 cases. Boxes the FC 03 came in were black and white Federal but otherwise quite different. I think of RG equating to the British arsenal at Radway Green and expect berdan-primers. These RG cases are obviously Federal-made. So what are these 2003 cases doing in a 2006 box?


#2

Could the cases possibly be over-runs from 2003 production?

The RG headstamped rounds with the JSP bullet and no NATO markings are apparently for UK police forces.


#3

To the best of my knowledge these are overruns or rejects from the UK order Falcon mentioned.

I’ve been told that the ‘X’ indicates a rejected lot of a standard govt contract item (XM193; 55gr 5.56x45mm FMJ, XM1003A; 190gr 10mm JHP for FBI, repackaged under the Federal “Classic” line, etc. have been sold commercially for some time). Some orders are rejected for things as simple as discolored cases or boxes. I have an email in to my ATK rep to confirm this. All of the Federa ‘X’ ammo myself or my agency has used has performed to spec without issue.

I have seen the same load packaged in blue boxes by Federal and sold as ‘Radway Green 9mm’ in ad copy well before 2003. I’ll check when I get home to see if I have one of these boxes left as I bought this stuff for practice rather than collecting.


#4

Mwinter, if you find your box please post some pics if possible, including the end label if it has the XM designation on it and the cartridge and headstamp (if you stil have any rounds left). Thanks.

Leon


#5

The RG headstamped 9mm is as Falcon says, made under contract by Federal for Radway Green for sale to British police forces. The contract has been running for some years, but I understand that recently there have been quality issues and RG have rejected several batches. Whther the contract is still running or not I do not know.

A minor point to Mwinter’s post. Surely XM193 or similar simply is for ammunition that has not yet been formally standardised with a Model number but is in use?

Regards
TonyE


#6

Tony - Reference “X” lot numbers from Federal. I think you are probably right. I am sure the “X” does not refer to “Experimental.” I have a box of Federal 9mm, very standard load, with an “X” lot number and the box marked in the factory printing for the RCMP. Unlike some of the RG ammo, which hit the American Commercial market in pretty large quantity and many different dates and box labels, (some of it not made by Federal, perhaps by Radway Green themselves), I don’t think this RCMP was ever surplused or rejected out to the commercial market, as the box seems quite scarce. A fellow had a few boxes at St. Louis (or may it was even “Chicago”) some years ago at little more than the price of that loading off the shelf in commercial boxes.


#7

I doubt that modern RG made ammo would make it to the US from the UK as surplus. Our PC government would sooner destroy it like the UN tells them to.


#8

All of this ammo came out of England. Several large importations of it. Both Federal-made and another make that I supposed was RG. Enough came in that I have six different boxes in my collection:

RG 97 British Aerospace Defence, Royal Ordnance No lot number on box, but a place for one. Small size box.

RG 99 British Aerospace, Royal Ordnance Lot number 00082. Stock on tag put on later says “Made in USA” but the ammo is not of Federal Characteristics. Small size box.

RG 99 British Aerospace, Royal Ordnance. Lot Number 00087. Same “USA” white Tag

RG 01 British Aerospace, Royal Ordnance. Lot number RG012F. No National Origin marks.
Large size box. Red Insert.

RG 99 British Aerospace, Royal Ordnance. Lot Number 220271Z257. Rubber-stamped “Made in USA” over lot number on end tab, red insert, Large size box.

RG 04 BAE Systems. Lot Number 2 22Y517. No National Identiy markings. Large size box. Red plastic insert.

All of the rounds in boxes with red plastic inserts have a headstamp style of “RG 99 9mm x 19” with no NATO mark, and have a brass primer with no visible PA or CMS. All of the others have a headstamp style of "RG 99 + 9 m m X 19. (The “+” is actually a NATO mark). They have a nickel primer with purple PA, and I assume are RG manufacture, despite the fact some of the boxes are stamped “USA.” They certainly are not made by Federal.

Falcon - remember, this was sold by Government. When you wave money in Government faces, scruples and integrity often disappear.


#9

It still surprises me that the sale of it was allowed. I am told that the UK government cut up the last remaining reserves of brand new No.4 rifles rather than sell them.


#10

Lot numbers 220271Z257 and 2 22Y517 conform to the Federal lot number systems of 1994-2001 and 2004-2010, 9mm line 22, respectively. RG012F is remarkably close to R6033F taking into account the similarities of 6 and G. Even under high magnification I still can’t say for 100% sure the 6 in lot number R6033F is a 6 vice a G. No question about the box it came in, however, its absolutely Federal.


#11

There is no question at all that the lot number on my box is RG012F and Not “R6.” The cartridge in it is Federal, with a brass primer, no sealants, and headstamp “RG 01 9mm x 19” nestled in a red plastic insert.

The auickest way to sort the two makers, whoever the second maker is, seems to be by the size of the box. All of the rounds from the smaller size boxes (4-1/4 x 2 x 1-1/8) have nickel primer cups with purple primer seal. The insert is creamy white plastic with post-type separations for the cartridges rather than a full “pokcet” for each cartridge. The large boxes (5 x 2-5/8 x 1-3/16) all have the same design tray. Two of them are red. The box marked “BAE Systems” has a white translucent trayof the same design as the red ones. All have casrtridges with Federal characteristics (no NATO mark on the headstamp, brass primer cup, no visible primer seal).


#12

Radway Green is not a Government arsenal, it is privately owned. As this ammo was made for sale to Police it is not military and not UK government property. If it was standard 9mm RG ball and delivered to the Government then the story might have been different. I am surprised that RG are still making 9mm, I thought that all UK military stuff was “bought in” over recent years.

gravelbelly


#13

That is a good point Dave. Apparently the cases at least for this ammunition were made by Federal. They could have been loaded in the UK.


#14

I do not believe that the cases for those rounds of these 95 grain JSP Police cartridges, that have the NATO Mark, nickel primer, and purple primer seal, are made by Federal. The ehadstamp letters are close, but not identical, especially the numeral “9” and the “look” is different. Ys, not very scientific evidence, but amazing how some manufacturers ammunition just has a indescribable look about it that tells you who made it. Federal is one of those makers. The different size boxes is another point.

Gravelbelly was spot on, of course. This is, in essence, commercial ammunition. There are no police names or property marks on the boxes, and the box art is purely commercial - dramatically so. Regarding ownership of Radway Green, it was, at least at the time of the manufacture of this ammunit, British Aerospace, using three forms of their name on the boxes:

British Aerospace - Royal Ordnance
British Aeorspace - DEFENCE - Royal Ordnance
BAE Systems

All six of my boxes have one end tab that is worded identically on all. It has the Radway Green appellation on it.

Wish I could send some pictures, but my camera is not set up. The space it is usually in is occupied at the moment with a different project.


#15

Surplus RG 9mm ammo is sold at Bisley. Whether its factory surplus or MOD date expired I can’t be sure.
Most manufacturing industries (and I suppose the ammo industry is no different) don’t stop when the contract amount is reached. They deliberately overun to use up all the available components. Safe in the knowledge that the over run can be sold. They have to order or make something like 10% excess components to allow for jam ups and other manufacturing glitches so rather than waste the excess components, while the machine is set up and running they just plow on till they are all used up.

Falcon, the cutting up of .303 no4 rifles occoured at a time when they were considered valueless and not worth the costs incurred in selling them. With them now fetching in excess of £400 ($600) each in good condition they are not so silly anymore. Brand new no4s in the factory grease still trickle onto the civilian market in dibs and drabs and are highly sought after. There have been some Fazakerly made ones recently being offered.


#16
  1. Quick revisit to lot numbers: An “RG” in a lot number of ammo with and RG headstamp makes perfect sense. My R6033F lot number font is so narrow it’s not possible to see the gap that differentiates a 6 from a G. Knee-jerk reaction is that it’s a 6. Look again asking yourself “could it be a G?” Yeah, it could be a G.
  2. Boxes/trays are an excellent way to differentiate different manufacturers. Different manufacturers want their products to be distinct – look different from their competitors. But look beyond the color scheme. A Winchester white box color scheme can be found on a 45 Auto box the same size, folded the same (European-style), containing the same trays, having the same lot numbering system, and stating MADE IN CZECH REPUBLIC just like a Sellier & Bellot box. That’s because it was produced on a S&B line in the Czech republic. A 45 Auto or 40 S&W Fiocchi box may state “Proudly made in the USA” but box/tray/lot number system are all the same as MFS brand made in Hungary. That’s because the Fiocchi box and ammo rolled off a MFS line in Hungary.
  3. But boxes are just the first step. By way of illustration, when I first started noticing differences between manufacturers I looked at the finish they imparted to their cases. Thinking about what might be possible but that I’d not observed, I realized that I’d never encountered a nickel-plated or a +P CCI-headstamped case. Then I went through a bucket of 38 special brass and came up with 6 CCI-headstamped nickel-plated +P cases with the same nickel-plating I observed on W-SUPER-W headstamped 38 special +P cases. It was only later that I found out the dot between the CCI’s 38 and SPL (38.SPL +P) was another indication they, too, were made by Olin. On the other hand, when I first started noticing, Federal nickel-plated cases had the roughest looking nickel plating and Speer-made cases (like CCI-made primers) had the best nickel plating. Now Federal has the same quality plating as the Speer/CCI products. They’re both subsidiaries of ATK, it’s not a great leap that the Speer/CCI plating technology is now shared with Federal.

#17

Alrighty. Word back from my rep at ATK states that the “XM” product designation denotes ‘special product’ or ‘special customer’, and no necessarily a rejected lot.

The only ‘XM’ ATK product he listed that specifically did not pass lot-acceptance is the XM855CS.

The example he gave is the XM9MS made for a US agency…that agency specified a nickel-plated case, but the standard ATK 9MS has a brass case…so, the “XM” here denotes a “special product”.


#18

Radway Green Pl;ant, formerly RORG, now BAE systems owned.) has been changeing over to Boxer primers since the 1990s.

The First ones using Boxer primers were the Long Blank 5,56 cases, in the early 1990s, soon followed by “RG13BK 96-8” ( an Export 5,56 Blank used by Australia in the mid to late 90s). RG now makes nearly all its SAA ( 9mm, 5,56 and 7,62 Nato) cartridges with Boxer Primers, as are also the Long Blanks in the Rifle Calibres.

The Question is whether all the “RG” headstamped ammo is ACTUALLY made in Britain, or is Subcontracted out either wholly or just as cases.

THis “cross fertilization” in ammo making is getting more common since the early 1990s…just lately, MKE (Turkey) let a tender for the supply of
Empty, Primed 9mm cases, for assembly into ammo in Turkey. An initial sample lot of 50K shells was required from each Tenderer to evaluate the “Loadability” of the cases, and the subsequent quality of the loaded ammo. The Entire contract was of the order of 50M cases, or some such.

I have not heard who won the tender…

Regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.


#19

I have thise box it was onopend till now and I see two different years 95 and 96 in the same box
Thise box also have no markings on it?
How know’s…


#20

[quote=“DocAV”]Radway Green Pl;ant, formerly RORG, now BAE systems owned.) has been changeing over to Boxer primers since the 1990s.

The First ones using Boxer primers were the Long Blank 5,56 cases, in the early 1990s, soon followed by “RG13BK 96-8” ( an Export 5,56 Blank used by Australia in the mid to late 90s). RG now makes nearly all its SAA ( 9mm, 5,56 and 7,62 Nato) cartridges with Boxer Primers, as are also the Long Blanks in the Rifle Calibres.

The Question is whether all the “RG” headstamped ammo is ACTUALLY made in Britain, or is Subcontracted out either wholly or just as cases.

THis “cross fertilization” in ammo making is getting more common since the early 1990s…just lately, MKE (Turkey) let a tender for the supply of
Empty, Primed 9mm cases, for assembly into ammo in Turkey. An initial sample lot of 50K shells was required from each Tenderer to evaluate the “Loadability” of the cases, and the subsequent quality of the loaded ammo. The Entire contract was of the order of 50M cases, or some such.

I have not heard who won the tender…

Regards,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.[/quote]

Sorry Doc, but I have to disagree about the Boxer primers. The very early RG experimental production of 5.56mm (1966-69) used Berdan primers, but when full production was being planned in 1979 the decision was taken that all 5.56mm would be Boxer primed. Since production started in 1980 ALL RG 5.56mm has used Boxer primers.

Early primers (nickel plated) were bought in from Hirtenberger but from about 1982 brass caps made in-house on new machinery bought from Finland were used.

RG 7.62mm has always used Berdan primers and still does. There was a small amount of experimental production with Boxer primers but service production is still Berdan.

9mm Mark 2z production ceased at RG in 1988 and was all Berdan primed. Some pilot production was re-started in 1993 in the hope of winning new government contracts but this did not happen. All RG headstampd 9mm since then for police sales has been bought in, mainly from Federal.

Norma made 7.62mm L2A2 ball cases headstamped “RG” but these were rejected and RG insisted that the headstamp was turned off before sale to the civilian market in the UK. Hirtenberger made “RG” headstamped Ball L2A2 and Blank L13A1 and these are easily recognised by the heavy headstamping rather than the fine characters normally used by RG.

I do not know the current staus of the contract with Federal (or anybody else) for 9mm.

Regards
TonyE