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Discussion Starter #1
Have found the following .303 Headstamps. All ammo berdan primed

British factories
/|\ = UK Government Property. Formerly the badge of the Sidney family, the broad arrow (or "Devil's Claws") symbol was appropriated by the British government to indicate the item was government issue
The 'Z' suffix Refers to graphite glazed nitro-cellulose propellant

B/|\E
Royal Ordnance Factory, Blackpole, Worcester, UK
Ball, Mk VII 1941 dated

K or KYNOCH
Kynoch & Co, Witton, Birmingham, UK.
Ball, Mk VIIZ 1918 dated
Ball Mk VII 1933 and 1937 dated
Armor Piercing, W Mk I 1940 and 1941 dated

K5
Imperial Chemical Industries Kynoch factory at Kidderminster, Worcestershire., UK
Armor Piercing, W Mk I 1942 dated

R/|\L
Royal Laboratory, Woolwich Arsenal, Kent, UK. Woolwich Arsenal, of which the Royal Laboratory was only a part, is situated in South East London on the River Thames. Arsenal est in 1670
Ball, Mk VII 1941 dated

Canadian factories
DAC
Dominion Arsenal, Quebec, Canada
Ball, Mk VII 1941 and 1942 dated

DI
Defence Industries, Verdun, Canada
Ball, Mk VII Z 1942 dated

Indian factories
K/|\F
Indian Government Ammunition Factory Kirkee (or Kirkee Arsenal), near Poona, INDIA
Ball, Mk VII 1936, 1938 and 1942

Some cases are sterile and those have copper jacketed bullets. Guns I get to shoot the ammo out of BREN Mk 2 LMG, Pattern 1914 (Remington produced) and a No 1 Mk III (GRI, 1945)
IMG_6234.jpg IMG_6235.jpg IMG_6236.jpg

CD
 

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Have found the following .303 Headstamps. All ammo berdan primed

British factories
/|\ = UK Government Property. Formerly the badge of the Sidney family, the broad arrow (or "Devil's Claws") symbol was appropriated by the British government to indicate the item was government issue
The 'Z' suffix Refers to graphite glazed nitro-cellulose propellant

B/|\E
Royal Ordnance Factory, Blackpole, Worcester, UK
Ball, Mk VII 1941 dated

K or KYNOCH
Kynoch & Co, Witton, Birmingham, UK.
Ball, Mk VIIZ 1918 dated
Ball Mk VII 1933 and 1937 dated
Armor Piercing, W Mk I 1940 and 1941 dated

K5
Imperial Chemical Industries Kynoch factory at Kidderminster, Worcestershire., UK
Armor Piercing, W Mk I 1942 dated

R/|\L
Royal Laboratory, Woolwich Arsenal, Kent, UK. Woolwich Arsenal, of which the Royal Laboratory was only a part, is situated in South East London on the River Thames. Arsenal est in 1670
Ball, Mk VII 1941 dated

Canadian factories
DAC
Dominion Arsenal, Quebec, Canada
Ball, Mk VII 1941 and 1942 dated

DI
Defence Industries, Verdun, Canada
Ball, Mk VII Z 1942 dated

Indian factories
K/|\F
Indian Government Ammunition Factory Kirkee (or Kirkee Arsenal), near Poona, INDIA
Ball, Mk VII 1936, 1938 and 1942

Some cases are sterile and those have copper jacketed bullets. Guns I get to shoot the ammo out of BREN Mk 2 LMG, Pattern 1914 (Remington produced) and a No 1 Mk III (GRI, 1945)
View attachment 739801 View attachment 739803 View attachment 739805

CD
Very cool
My not so local gun shop has a bunch of the Pakistan ammo.
I bought a box just to add to my decor.
32 cartridges to a box.dated 5 Aug 1966 303 inch MK7 c.i.a.
(P) p.o.l.
 

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Actually we more commonly call the three prongs a crows foot. Supposed to be an arrow. Denoted government property.

The most curious .303 round I ever found was with a wooden bullet. Not a drill round, loaded with cordite. Someone said it was for training, there would have been a device to split the wood as it emerged. An early BFA. No idea if true.
 

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Actually we more commonly call the three prongs a crows foot. Supposed to be an arrow. Denoted government property.

The most curious .303 round I ever found was with a wooden bullet. Not a drill round, loaded with cordite. Someone said it was for training, there would have been a device to split the wood as it emerged. An early BFA. No idea if true.
I was told that these were a grenade launching round to propel the Mills bomb from a cup discharger. Supposedly there was a version with a paper mache' bullet also... cannot find a reference in any of my books, so this may not be correct, but would appreciate any clarification from anybody who knows. - Thanks to Zuku in SA for info below:

CORRECTION! "Cartridge S.A. Blank .303 inch L Mark VII" originally designed for Vickers and BREN fitted with special attachments to turn the bullet into small non-lethal chips.

Warning: The wooden tip is not a blank and must be treated as a normal bullet
. The Army used it for cheap training with the .303 the same as they used plastic bullets for the R1. However with age the wood tips will crack and splinter and will disintegrate when leaving the barrel. When they used it in the 60 and 70's the woodtips would penetrate the backwall like a normal bullet and will defenitely kill someone at 100m or more. Latter on they modified it for the MG as the other posters explained
 

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Here's a good story. I once went into a suppliers in the 80s and asked if the guy had any .303 ammo. He came out with a large bucket full of loose rounds, no charge. I looked at them and they were all WW1 dated. I declined them, suggested they may not even go off. Later I found out they were selling WW1 dated rounds to collectors for a fiver a piece. Ah well. Someone once said 'you never miss what you never had'. So he never lost any body parts!.
 

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we in the UK and others refer to the broad arrow symbol as the sign of Crows Foot Engineering or more correctly as a pheon. I've used WW2 .303 in the '70s and found it best to select the same date and maker into batches otherwise it groups all over the place, re-sight when changing batches.
When I was at school in the '50's in England we had our own large bore rifle range and competed regularly with other schools and at Bisley in the Ashburton Shield. We used second World War surplus ammunition and did indeed try to select the same date and maker into batches. I still own the same No 4 Lee Enfield with a 5 aperture Parker Hale sight that my father gave me when I was 16 years old at school. Some boys were allowed to own their own rifles if they were in the school shooting eight. Had to be kept in the armories along with the other 450 ones used in the combined cadet force that we were all coerced into. I was taught to shoot and care for that rifle of mine by retired Sergeant Majors from the Royal Artillery and Irish Inniskillings in charge of our cadet force. Brings back memories.
 

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There was an article in Gun Digest in the 70s when the Russians were in Afganistan. The Afganies had agents in the US buying up old
film in Hollywood from movie companies. They were cutting it up by hand. Women and children cutting it into fine strips to use as propellant charge in 303s.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Took out one of the Khyber Pass made SMLEs today with some ammo dated from 1936-41. Need to work on the follower next as its sticking not allowing ammo to feed up.



CD
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Group photo of the best of the 8 .303 rifles on hand. Finally understanding British martial rifles.
Top-Down
SMLE Enfield made in 1914
No. 1 Mk III GRI (Pakistan) made in 1945. SMLE was renamed to No. 1 Mk III in 1926.
Pattern 14 made by Remington in 1916. Renamed the No. 3 rifle in 1926. (The missing No. 2 was a .22LR training rifle)
No. 4 Mk I made by Long Branch in Canada in 1944
No. 5 Mk I dated 1949 by production was only 44-47'. This is a Khyber Pass gun.
 

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Somewhere if I can find it there was a reference to the MKVII 174 grain ammo. As the original 215 gran FMJ was not working so well at close range against determined assailants using swords they developed the 174 grain ammo with a long nose and an aluminum tip which would promote keyholing when it hit a human target. Due to war time needs they would substitute the aluminum with wood tips. In order to make "civilized" ammo they had to sterilize the wood for the tips so as not to be blamed for using poisonous ammo. Interesting tidbit I picked up written by a 303 historian.

I had read that the 303 WWII ammo was not very consistent. So the batch sorting makes a lot of sense.

DEP
 

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The brits did not adopt the MkVII ball over the Mk VI ball for anything else other than higher velocity , which resulted in flatter trajectory and hence more penetration. They emulated the spritzer point the germans adopted as the S patronen but wanted a slightly heavier bullet than the german S bullet. The longer Mk VII bullet also allowed for more secure seating in the case.... it's pretty darn hard to knock a loaded military 303 round into the case. The whole fiber or aluminum tip filler created as a way to increase wounding is bunk. In those days the ability to insure uniform seating of the pressed in lead core to 100% fill without bullet deformation and or undue wear of dies made the tip filler a good medium to prevent this. From fairly early on the germans went to steel jacket plated bullets after the adoption of the S patronen. The brits never did in the two world wars. Copper based alloys like cupronickel were their choice for ease of manufacture. When you read into the great war in depth the much higher velocities of the typical rifles of that era wounded more greiviously than any war before due mostly to velocity. The S patronen 154 grain bullet often turned turtle in flesh creating horrific wounds. As well as it's typical loading of the day it often exceeded 2800fps . Most pointed military ball of the day with as then universally high velocities generated more horrific wounds than seen in previous wars.
Virtually all wartime ammunition of all countries produced in such huge quantities by a myriad of suppliers suffered , hardly a brit problem alone . US made 30 cal ball of the great war era was abysmal. A lot of the US made and supplied 303 ammo then was junk as well.



Somewhere if I can find it there was a reference to the MKVII 174 grain ammo. As the original 215 gran FMJ was not working so well at close range against determined assailants using swords they developed the 174 grain ammo with a long nose and an aluminum tip which would promote keyholing when it hit a human target. Due to war time needs they would substitute the aluminum with wood tips. In order to make "civilized" ammo they had to sterilize the wood for the tips so as not to be blamed for using poisonous ammo. Interesting tidbit I picked up written by a 303 historian.

I had read that the 303 WWII ammo was not very consistent. So the batch sorting makes a lot of sense.

DEP
 
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