Winchester WW1 .303 British


#1

Recently acquired…A 20 round box of Winchester WW1 .303 British (contract) headstamped W 14 VII. The box is completely plain with no labeling. Bullet is 174 gr. CN with two knurled cannelures and raised W in the lead at the base.
W 14 VII 303B0002

W 14 VII 303B0001

I collect US made .303 British and don’t recall seeing a WW1 Winchester round like this, ever. All that I have seen until now have W at 9 o’clock and the year of manufacture at 3 o’clock.
Any input appreciated.
Does anyone have paperwork regarding Allied contracts with US companies for ammunition in WW1 ?

Randy


Frankford Arsenal .303"?
#2

Two pages from an unfinished manuscript by James C. Tillinghast.

edited to add the pencil corrections appear to me to be in Bill Woodin’s handwriting.


#3

Thanks, Pete…Good info !

Randy


#4

Whilst being slightly too early to show Winchester production for the UK here is the monthly production of 0,303" Mk VII taken from a British Ministry of Munitions file MUN 4/2543 titled;

“Small Arms Ammunition 0,303 Mk VII
Statement showing for each firm - British & American”

The quantities are truly prodigious.

I assume this was a regular exercise but until now I’ve not turned up a similar table from a later date … but I’ll carry on looking.

Peter


#5

Great data. Thank you.


#6

Peter…Thank you…

Your posted chart with a date of August 17, 1915 begs the question…If Winchester was making .303 British ammunition in 1914, 1915 and 1916, I assume for Britain, why are they not on the list ?

Randy


#7

Randy
I may be wrong but I don’t think Winchester .303" ammunition was shipped to England until after 1917 and when it did arrive it was found much lacking in quality & wasn’t used or perhaps used just for home guard.
My details may not be accurate but the ammo arrived late and wasn’t fit for use.

EDITED to add I may well be wrong about this in confusing problems in WW I with WW II


#8

I’d bet “303 English” headstamp produced plenty of not so pleasant sentiment when it arrived over the Pond.


#9

Vlad…

Plenty of pleasant sentiment if one or two .303 ENGLISH arrived today, ANYWHERE…it is one of the rarest headstamps there is…

Pete…

So…Winchester .303 ammunition was lacking in quality in the WW1 era, (as it also was in WW2)…what do you suppose went wrong?..The other contemporary makers seem to have not had issues, or at least minor ones compared to W.R.A.Co.

Randy


#10

Randy,
What I mean is that people in Wales, Scotland and Corwall don’t mind being called British but not so much being called English.


#11

Yes, Vlad…I realized that…

Randy


#12

Randy
I may well have been confused about which war the W.R.A.Co. ammunition was considered faulty. My apologies & I hope someone will correct this.

Vlad, their is only one known .303 ENGLISH round & it currently lives in England.


#13

IIRC the National made .303" gave much trouble and was withdrawn. Same company got a US contract for 30-06 with similar results. National ammo is mentioned in accounts of blown up M1903 Springfields.


#14

According to “WINCHESTER - THE GUN THAT WON THE WEST” by Williamson, Winchester delivered 99,285,500 .303 cartridges to the allies in World War 1.

Does anyone have examples of .303 cartridges made by National Conduit Co. ?

Randy


#15


My headstamp scan is invisible to me. But I’ve sent it to MUNICION.org and I can see it there.
I’ll post it here if I find it.


#16

Randy,
I fixed it.
Nc17G


#17

Yes, Vlad…

The .30-06 is seen on occasion…I have not seen a .303 British…

Randy


#18

National hs was H on .303"


#19

Is “H” for “Hudson”? I assumed that .30-06 headstamp is the same as .303 British. Obviously I was wrong.


#20

National left & Hastings on Hudson right. There is also a S.A.Co. draw piece with a VII at 6, but not mine.
edited to add Hastings
H 16 VII 303H-16 VII 303