I am going through my folder of German 7.9 box labels and found this one which is only one of this layout I have seen. Is it common or unusual
The layout of this label is normal in my view.
The blue stripe indicates steel cases and “i.L.” means “in Ladestreifen” (in stripper clips) .
The box is special in that it shows the early cartridge designation for what became the assault rifle (Sturmgewehr 44) ammunition.
weapon: Maschinenkarabiner 42 → Maschinenpistole 43 [and 44] → Sturngewehr 44
ammunition: Maschinenkarabiner-Patrone S → Pistolen-Patrone 43 → Kurzpatrone 43
Also, the revised layout of the label is to accomodate its different size, for a different sized box/packet.
And 20 cartridges was a change from the Normal 15 rd. 7,9sS box.
( Kp43 were also packed loose in a 15 round box).
How unusual is the lot number “3b”?
Does the “b” represent a sub-lot or componant change within the production run?
Is there a lot “3”, “3a”, “3c”, etc…?
Letters were generally used to identify sublots (a “Rate”, the German word for installment). Not normally encountered on small arms ammunition, except Panzerbüchse.
In 1942, production of this ammunition was still in its infancy. The first trial on the Eastern front started only in April of the following year.