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Old July 11, 2017, 08:56 AM   #26
Josh Smith
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As was stated, the heavy ball 7.62x54r was indeed machinegun ammo.

It was not hotter, usually. Just a bit more recoil due to the weight of the bullet, and perfectly safe to fire in any Russian Mosin in good condition.

Many notice improved accuracy, since the Mosin's twist is actually designed for a heavier bullet.

Russian 7n1 loads used 152gr *steel core* bullets which were longer due to their lighter weight. The Finns used a 200gr bullet in their accuracy load.

Try it. Your Mosin might just prefer a longer, heavier bullet.

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Old July 11, 2017, 07:37 PM   #27
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Especially when you consider MG34 and MG42 are gas operated and tend to spontaneously disassemble if you use ammo that is too hot, such as Turkish surplus.

I thought the MG34 and MG42 were recoil operated guns.
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Old July 11, 2017, 09:52 PM   #28
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Some yellow tipped brass Mosin shells were known as "machine gun" ammo and I was advised not to shoot it in my Mosin by the old timers at the gun shop. I don't know if it's true but I still have 40 rounds of it in the top of the closet. I won't be running it through my bolt gun.
people can say what they want but I am not inclined to believe that they would mark the projectile [yellow] simply to identify weight. I have had the occasion to shoot yellow 762x54 and at the time I had no idea that it was any different that any other 54r.. I noticed on the very first shot that something was different about the ammo. I ended up not being able to get my bolt open and an older gentlemen came over to my bench to offer help. We finally got the bolt open and as he was looking at the ammo he said that I should not use yellow tip 54r in my bolt rifle. I still have that ammo and I never shot the rest of it. My impression was that the round was hot
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Old July 12, 2017, 07:32 AM   #29
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"people can say what they want but I am not inclined to believe that they would mark the projectile [yellow] simply to identify weight."

Believe what you want, but that's correct.

Yellow-tip 7.62x54R ammunition is so marked to designate it as heavy ball, lead core ammunition.

Numerous nations have color codes used to designate bullets that are heavier or lighter than the standard ball ammo (in the case of the Soviet 7.62, standard was 147-gr. lead core).

That's the entire purpose of tip markings -- identifying those bullets that deviate from the standard round.
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Old July 12, 2017, 06:38 PM   #30
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"I don't believe any modern army would put two different cartridges of the same caliber in the supply channel."

Most armies have a whole range of cartridges in the standard caliber - ball, armor-piercing, tracer, incendiary, explosive, dummy, etc., plus combinations like armor-piercing tracer. Pressures may vary but all will be safe to fire in the standard weapons. There may be or have been, an army that has issued ammo that will blow up its own guns, but I have never seen any valid claims to that effect, and it does seem just a bit counter-productive.

Jim
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Old January 11, 2018, 02:25 PM   #31
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Here in Norway, we had two different loadings for 9 x 19mm guns. One was hot to work in Stens and MP-40's, the other was not so hot and used for P-08 Luger, Browning High-Power and P-38 Walther pistols. I don't know when it was introduced or ended, but they were in use during the 80's. Both came in white boxes of 50 rounds from the same producer, but the hot one had warning against using it in those pistols, and it also didn't have the black dot indicating it could be used in any 9 x 19 guns. ( Sorry for my bad description, English is not my first language ). They also have different Nato stock numbers. And yes, we did use old guns from WWII almost untill year 2000, our last MG-34 and MP-40 were removed from service from the last units just before. ( Low priority units ).

If it's of any interest, I can post pictures of the boxes, and I can check if there are any difference visible or with the weight of those two rounds.
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Old January 12, 2018, 02:34 AM   #32
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Yes, many aircraft/ anti aircraft machine guns contained stellite barrels and receivers, allowing hotter ammunition and extending range with flatter trajectory.
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Old January 12, 2018, 10:55 AM   #33
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The British produced Mk VIII .303 with boattail bullets for machine guns. A lot of it was Mk VIII-Z loaded with nitrocellulose powder instead of Cordite. It was recommended not to shoot Mk VIII-Z in rifles that had been shooting Mk VII and had gotten some throat erosion from Cordite. That the hard boattail bullet would not obturate well and accuracy would be poor, right down to tumbling.

I recall the 1970s Handgunner Ltd, back when a free Englishman might own a pistol, referring to 9mm 2Z as "The infamous Browning killing Two Zed with epoxied bullet."
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Old January 12, 2018, 05:25 PM   #34
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The USA experimented with a btsp .30-06. Didn't like it and the excess was used as machine gun ammo. Not sure if any made it into WWII.
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Old January 12, 2018, 05:58 PM   #35
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That was the M1 load, the 1925 load meant for long range machine gun fire and probably the old notion of mass company barrages. Dropped before WWII, but the basis for military match ammo for years and years.
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Old January 15, 2018, 12:44 PM   #36
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There are lots of references to "hot SMG" 9mm ammo in Sweden.
I have a Swedish M40 "Lahti" pistol, and discussions of shooting them always involves avoiding "hot SMG" ammo.

The hot ammo is usually identified as M39/B, subjective reports describe it as "hot", but a chrono test of ten rounds showed normal velocities in the 1200-1250fps range.

The Swedes scrapped ~50,000 Lahtis after blowing-up more than a few in periodic testing, and that may have contributed to the "hot SMG" ammo legend.
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Old January 16, 2018, 08:47 AM   #37
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"The USA experimented with a btsp .30-06. Didn't like it and the excess was used as machine gun ammo. Not sure if any made it into WWII."

The US military didn't experiment with boat tail spire point ammo, it was adopted in the early 1920s as the Ball M1 cartridge to replace the original M1906 cartridge with a flat based 150-gr. bullet, whose range had been found lacking during combat in WW I.

The Ball M1 cartridge had a 172 grain bullet. That, combined with the boat tail, served to increase the round's range by almost 50 percent. The Ball M1 bullet also introduced the gilding metal jacket, which eliminated the very problematic fouling that was encountered using bullets clad with cupronickel.

In 1938, due to a number of considerations (including the fact that the increased range of Ball M1 made it problematic for use on many military ranges), the Ball M2 cartridge was adopted for service.

Ball M2 was very similar to the M1906 round, with a 150 grain flat base bullet, but had a higher initial velocity (compliments of new, better, Du Pont IMR powders), which gave it a maximum range somewhere in between M1906 and Ball M1.

Ball M1 cartridges were set aside and designated for use primarily in US Army Air Corps and US Navy aircraft machine guns. I've also heard stories about Ball M1 ammunition being used for sniping purposes because of the flatter long-range trajectory, but I don't know for certain.

Here's a nifty picture that shows the progression of .30 caliber projectiles for the .30-03/.30-06.



From left to right:

Ball M1903, which is identical to the bullet adopted for use in the .30-40 Krag. It was 220-gr. with a cupronickle jacket.

Ball M1906, 150-gr. flat base with cupronickle jacket. Adopted in 1906 and used until 1926.

Ball M1, 172-gr. boattail, adopted 1926 and used until the end of World War II and possibly later.

Ball M2, adopted in 1938. Compared to the Ball M1906 it has a more rounded base. This may have given it somewhat better ballistic properties, although that is pure speculation on my part.

Ball M2, Armor Piercing. By the end of WW II, Ball M2 AP was so common that it had virtually replaced standard Ball M2 in service use.
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Old January 16, 2018, 10:11 AM   #38
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Hatcher said that the first 150 gr bullets in 1938 had a "stannic stain" to look like 1906 and distinguish it from the gilding metal M1.
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Old January 16, 2018, 11:29 PM   #39
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"Ball M2 AP"

No such thing. Bullets are either "ball" (plain inert bullet, usually in US service a lead core and gilding metal or gilding metal plated steel jacket), or a special bullet, like AP or tracer.

It is often said or written that AP bullets penetrate solely due to the hardness of the bullet and its velocity. That is not really true; the US AP bullet has a core of carbide inside a gilding metal or steel jacket, with the interior space filled with lead to lend weight.

When the AP bullet strikes armor plate, the outer jacket and lead filler instantly give up their kinetic energy in the form of heat, melting both the bullet exterior and the armor plate. The carbide core then penetrates the molten plate. If the plate is too thick, it will absorb the heat before the plate softens and the bullet core will not penetrate.

In the Aberdeen Proving Ground museum there is (or was) a German tank turret which had been hit by at least a dozen .30 AP bullets.* Of course, none of the bullets penetrated that thick armor, but they did melt the steel enough that the bullet cores stuck when the steel solidified. The turret had the look of a man's face with odd-looking stubble.

Jim

*In WWII, standard combat issue for riflemen was black-tip AP; ball was normally issued only for training stateside. The issue of AP was due to the need to penetrate light vehicles and aircraft; no tank worth fielding would have been penetrated by a .30 AP bullet.

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Old January 17, 2018, 07:17 AM   #40
Mike Irwin
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"No such thing."

Yep. Got my nomenclature tangled.


"That is not really true; the US AP bullet has a core of carbide inside a gilding metal or steel jacket, with the interior space filled with lead to lend weight."

Not during World War II. Virtually all US AP ammo manufactured during the war had a hardened steel insert; some did have a tungsten chromium steel (high speed tool steel).

Tungsten carbide was far too precious, too scarce, and too much in demand for anti tank use to be used in small arms. Tungsten chromium steel wasn't really suitable for use in anti tank artillery because, unlike tungsten carbide, TCS was far more prone to shattering when it hit heavy armor.

Carbide penetrators for small arms ammunition didn't come into common use until well into the 1950s, and primarily in Europe.
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Old January 18, 2018, 02:46 AM   #41
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As I said they tried the BTSP and didn't like it. I didn't write at length because it didn't quite fit the topic of a more powerful cartridge for machine guns than for rifles.
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Old January 18, 2018, 07:06 AM   #42
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The military liked the performance of the boattail Ball M1 round just fine.

But, as I noted, it made many military firing ranges unusable because of its extended range.

During the depression there was simply no money to expand the ranges, so the most logical choice was to change the ammunition to remove the problem.

Had the firing range issue not been an issue, it's very likely that the US would have entered WWII with the Ball M1 as the standard military issue.
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Old January 18, 2018, 11:18 PM   #43
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I didn't say that performance was why they didn't like it.
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Old January 19, 2018, 07:06 AM   #44
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Liking something but finding it to be unsuitable for your purposes and not liking something are completely different scenarios.

Realistically, it wasn't about like or dislike.

It was about functional utility.
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Old January 19, 2018, 08:32 PM   #45
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On further checking, I found that Mike is correct and that carbide penetraors were post-WWII. My error, and apologies.

Mike, I have been reading an article in Firearms News which is essentially a rehash of all the old garbage about the "perfect" Johnson 1940 rifle ("the most reliable self-loading rifle ever made") and the M1, repeatedly denounced and condemned by the author, Jim Dickson. FWIW, I once owned two Johnsons, both brand new when I got them, and fired both with M1 Ball, M2 Ball and AP. They were good guns, but not the miracle weapons the writer describes. If you have read the article, I would like to see your thoughts and comments.

Jim
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Old January 20, 2018, 07:36 AM   #46
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Jim, sorry, but I don't get Firearms News anymore.

I'm not familiar with Mr. Dickson, but it sounds as if you're saying that he's still beating the drum about what a horrible mistake adopting the Garand was?

I've never fired a Johnson rifle, only held them (when I worked at American Rifleman I got to handle some of the museum firearms from time to time).

Over the years I have read some of the Rifleman's reporting of the time on the controversy between the two, but that was a long time ago.

One thing that sticks in my mind is that Johnson went through hell and back trying to come up with a bayonet that would work with his rifle because the standard bayonet would completely mess with both the recoil operation and the accuracy.
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