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Old February 1, 2024, 07:29 PM   #1
Snice
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Unknown artillery round.

I found this in an antique shop and just had to have it. It was the second one we saw that day so I felt like it was a sign. Well I don’t know much about them but I got to thinking about if it was live or not. A quick google search did t give meant info on this particular round except that the dummy rounds of these were wood. Mine is definitely steel. It sounds somewhat hollow, but there are no holes drilled into it at all and it is very heavy. The bottom has a firing cap in the center. Google tells me all about the guns it could have been used in, but nothing about the actual rounds or anything. I have googled every number on it and even some image searches and gotten nothing but mixed messages on if it’s a dummy or a live round that hasn’t been decommissioned. The place I bought it from didn’t know anything about it as they got it via a lump sell on someone’s estate after they passed. I would think it wasn’t live, but the area it came from had a very active military fort that was still in use all the way up to 1947. And still to this day, military vessels and transport go through the area quite frequently. Can anyone here give me any clues as to this being a dummy or a live round? It came in a case shown next to it. I apologize for the photo of the bottom not being of the whole thing, I had to crop it down in order to upload it. What’s seen is literally the only letters and numbers that are still visible. The case says “3 inch gun, M1902, M1919” and “M1, M3, M5, M6, M7, Container 3in, M28).
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Last edited by Snice; February 1, 2024 at 07:43 PM.
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Old February 1, 2024, 07:41 PM   #2
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A picture would nice . . .
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Old February 1, 2024, 07:44 PM   #3
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I realized it didn’t accept the pictures, I updated it.
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Old February 2, 2024, 06:57 AM   #4
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3 inch shell

This is a 76mm (3") shell for the 3" antitank cannon, it has a date of 1943. It appears to be live. Handle it with care.
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Old February 2, 2024, 07:54 AM   #5
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I'm pretty sure that that's a dummy training round because the "body" of the case... isn't brass. It appears to be wood.


The projectile nose is the only part of the projectile that's actually there. There's no shell driving band as there would be with a real shell and the projectile nose? It's held in place with a slot head screw.

Best guess is that it's a 76.2x585R training round for use with the 3" Gun M5.

but, it could also be US Navy.


EDIT IN: Wait, I just saw you said that it appears to be steel? I'm still thinking dummy round, though, because no US artillery shells I know of used that kind of construction.



OK, here's another tell that it's not a real round...

"3 inch gun, M1902, M1919"

The 3" M1902 field gun used a 273mm long case, and I'm pretty sure that it was a straight walled case.

Hum... more interesting... I just found references to an M1902 coastal artillery gun using a 585mm case... which later morphed into the round used in the M5 anti-tank gun.
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Old February 2, 2024, 09:26 AM   #6
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Dummy. It is all one piece from the fuze to the rim.
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Old February 2, 2024, 09:44 AM   #7
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This photo shows what a real 3” looks like.

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Old February 2, 2024, 12:02 PM   #8
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With no context for accurate sizing I judge it to be a training dummy for anti aircraft because of proximity fuse.
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Old February 2, 2024, 12:41 PM   #9
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I don't think that's a proximity fuse. It's got full brass construction, which wouldn't work with the radar sender. WW II era proximity fuses had plastic-type nose assembly that would allow the radar pulses to send from the shell and be received by the mechanism.
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Old February 2, 2024, 12:42 PM   #10
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We bought in Astoria Washington. Fort stevens was active there until 1947. They used the shipping port in Portland and Astoria for shipping tanks and other equipment during WWI and WWII. The fort its self was designed to protect against naval attacks on the mouth of the Columbia River, it had multiple types of big guns throughout its active life. So it doesn’t surprise me if it was one of their training dummies. I just couldn’t find anything about them being made of metal the way this one is and they had one displayed in their museum and it was definitely wood. It does have multiple screws in what should be the fuse I think? They definitely hold it in place. I’m not sure what a driving band is, pardon my ignorance, but at the bottom of the shaft there is a residue of a band of some sort having been around it at one time. I thought maybe a type of wide banded tape (wider than duct tape) maybe. I don’t know if that makes a difference. We are pretty sure it’s steel, but it could be brass, it just doesn’t quite have a brass sound if that makes sense. I have a lot of brass in my home and honestly it feels like a steel shell casing and not a brass one, but I’m judging that off of much smaller rounds for rifles.
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Old February 2, 2024, 12:48 PM   #11
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Feels like steel? Got a magnet?
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Old February 6, 2024, 12:39 PM   #12
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I can assure you it was not purchased in Astoria, Washington. Astoria has been in Oregon state for a heck of a long time now. When you drive across that long bridge going North, that's Washington.
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Old February 7, 2024, 03:30 PM   #13
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Inert?

I don't recall seeing an inert round with a primer in it....
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Old February 7, 2024, 11:03 PM   #14
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I would be very careful with that round. As stated, inert training rounds do not have live primers. It may be a practice round which does not contain live explosives in the projectile, but the case may have a full charge of propellant in it.
I was in Air Force nuclear and conventional munitions for 25 years, and munitions folks are always wanting some memorabilia to put on the shelf at home. Been that way for decades and decades. More than one person has grabbed the wrong stuff and painted it some strange color. Also, civilians have found lost stuff that fell off a truck. Way back when (late '60s)I was stationed in Montana, a rancher found a couple of 40 mm grenades on a road to a missile site. Fortunately, he talked to the local cop who was former military.
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Old February 9, 2024, 02:16 PM   #15
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pic

I found a pic online of the same round, identified as a 76mm/3" US M15B1 training or drill round. Now that could be incorrect as well, and I have not searched the M15B1 listing as yet, but appearance is the same as that posted by the OP
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Old February 9, 2024, 11:14 PM   #16
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Yup!

Did further checking......looks like an exact match. Used in the M1918, M1 and M3 AA guns and the M7 anti-tank gun. Dang things ain't cheap either!!!!!!!!1
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Old February 10, 2024, 11:56 AM   #17
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"It may be a practice round which does not contain live explosives in the projectile, but the case may have a full charge of propellant in it."

Training rounds don't have a fuse/nose assembly held in the "case" with a steel slot head screw.

Here's a page with a bunch of information on the 3" and its ammo and guns.

https://www.theshermantank.com/about...ormation-page/
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Old February 12, 2024, 02:30 PM   #18
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i got some empty shipping cans for howitzers like the one pictured...fyi!
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Old February 14, 2024, 04:19 PM   #19
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AP rounds don’t have fancy fuses. Anti aircraft rounds do have fuses that can be set for elevation. The smaller calibers like the 40mm bofors AA ammo is engineered to explode at 3500 meters. Failing direct impact or tracer burn out.
US made ordinance is dependable, never mess with any Asian Commie ordinance.
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Old February 15, 2024, 10:06 PM   #20
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Coastal gun batteries

Both sides of the Columbia had gun emplacements, in fact during WW2 Oregon was shelled by a Japanese submarine which was just off what is now Ft. Stevens state park. If one wants to see battery Russell and the others follow the highway signs to Ft. Stevens state park, signs within the state park will direct you.
We high school partied there in the 70's, all the fun parts are fenced off now. but one can still get the layout.
A little further South is Camp Rilea that has been a gunnery range for many many years as well, it's only 10 Mi. S of Astoria on 101. Oregon national guard trains there with big toys.
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Old February 18, 2024, 06:07 AM   #21
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funny how history doesn't highlight that we were shelled by the japs.
so much happened that we didn't know.
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Old February 18, 2024, 08:56 AM   #22
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Because in the grand scheme of things it was a very large nothingburger. Very minimal damage, and I don't think there were even any casualties.

What it did, do, however, was fan anti-Japanese hysteria into a raging inferno that resulted in the United States shipping pretty much everyone of Japanese ancestry from the west coast to internment camps in the heartland.
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Old February 18, 2024, 01:42 PM   #23
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Mike is right on, a huge nothing burger. No casualties. Japan also launched thousands of incendiary balloons. The idea was to start raging forest fires on the US West coast. Did not work out so well. One landed on the Southern Oregon coast, right at the California border. Someone forgot to tell them it rains a lot here..... Almost no damage was actually done. The trail back to where it ended up is a nice hike, but again pretty much a nothing burger.
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Old February 18, 2024, 03:50 PM   #24
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There is a documented case of one of the Japanese balloon bombs killing people, I'd have to look it up to see but I have seen it reported. Some kids and their Pastor found one in Oregon, and as they investigated it went off. OK, quick internet search says May 5 1945 Japanese balloon bomb kills 6 in Oregon. 5 kids one adult.

Another interesting tidbit, the comedy movie 1941 actually had a real life inspiration, Feb 23, 1942, the submarine I-17 shelled the oil refinery at Elwood CA, near Santa Barbara. The shelling lasted about 20 minutes, destroying a derrick, a pump house and causing minor damage to the pier and some other things. The sub them sailed away.

According to legend, this was an act of personal revenge by the sub captain, who had visited the place before the war and "fell on a cactus".

Records indicate this part is false, as the guy who commanded the sub had never set foot on US soil. But the shelling was absolutely real. In the weeks following Pearl Harbor, there were as many as half a dozen Japanese submarines that operated off the west coast, sinking a couple of ships and shelling some places.

As to the "unknown" artillery round, there is a possibility not yet mentioned, and that is that it MIGHT not be an actual military round, but a "curio" made by someone who got their hands on the casing, and made a "bullet" to cap it with as a decorator display item.
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Old February 19, 2024, 10:14 AM   #25
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We also seem to have forgotten that the German submarines were very active in the Gulf of Mexico and along the East Coast and even sailed up the St Lawrence river.
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