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Going through a trunk in the basement, I came across some of the .303 ammo I’ve put away over the years as being collectible and not for shooting. Includes some full WWI WWII bandoleers, a box of tracer, some WWII Winchester etc.
 

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Very nice! It’s a shame that more original, period issued ammo has not been preserved for collections.
 

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@husk , very nice collection, the condition is exceptional! I, for one, would not mind seeing more of it, though I'm sure going through everything & staging it is a time consuming process. Thank you for sharing!
 

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This cardboard box of 32 .303 Mk. 7 rounds is how we received them for a shoot when I was in Cadets. No, I didn't pinch them! I bought them some years back.

Twenty eight rounds were loaded into the Bren magazines, four rounds from each box then went into a pool with cartridges from other boxes from which Cadets drew 30 rounds to fire in their SMLEs. At the end of the shoot all empty cases were counted and accounted for against the number of live rounds provided by the Army. If there was a discrepancy there was hell to pay. It was "turn out your pockets!" time.

These .303 Mk. 7 rounds were made and packed at the Footscray No.1 Factory (M.F.) on 25 March 1955. I fired a lot of this 1955 ammo in Cadets (1960s and roughly ten years old or less then) and it was very accurate. Last year in one of the brief periods the ranges were open here I fired a few loose rounds from a 1955 batch and a 1957 batch (so 65 & 63 years old) and they all went bang and they all shot accurately at 100 yards.

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Five .303 Mk.VI CAC 1917 rounds. When one of my club mates found out I had bought the 1917 Lithgow he gave me these "so your rifle doesn't feel lonely". These have the head stamp
C A C VI /|\ 17 Colonial Ammunition Company, Auckland, N.Z.

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3802090
 

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We got the 32 count pasteboard boxes of Mk.VII ball as well...I used to have the box but downsized when I only had 15 rounds left...



Looks like mine are Greenwood and Batley (Leeds) from 1955.

They cost $1.45 a box...so, if you were going off on a canoe trip (Canada, 1970-ish) you could pick up a No.5 Mk.I and a box for less than $20.00 and no great loss if anything troublesome happened to the rifle along the way.

For hunting we typically picked up something round nosed and heavy from CIL (Canadian Industries Limited)...



They went for $4.45 a box (20) back then...



When I was in the cadets it was a school associated, half-assed kind of thing and we only had DP'ed No.4's for the colour guard and I was never keen enough to get near one of those...had my own at home anyway!
 

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Our drills were a little different from the Aussie ones it seems.
The "Course of fire" was:
2 Rounds (warming & Fouling of bore, for the use of.) "dumped into the bank".
Followed by:
10 rounds "Application" (shooting for the highest score)
10 Rounds "Grouping" Smallest group on the paper, didn't need to be in the bull.
10 rounds "Snap" a small target on a stick was wafted about behind the berm & you shot at it in a limited time frame.
(The real, skilled, goal was to hit the nail head holding the flat to the pole so the poor bugger waving it got the rough wood ripped out of his hands, dropping it.)
Frequently standardized on a 100yd range because we had lots of them!
That neatly "consumed" all 32 rounds in the box which were returned in the box so they could tell if any were AWOL.
 

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Very nice! It’s a shame that more original, period issued ammo has not been preserved for collections.
Part of the problem is that there are not "collectors" for the ammo. I had probably 15,000 rds of WWI and WWII ammo in cloth bandoleers. There was a market for the bandoleers, not so much for the ammo. I saved some in a bucket - a little of each headstamp, but there really was no demand for it. I still have a few thousand rds linked for the MKII browning MGs.
 

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Part of the problem is that there are not "collectors" for the ammo. I had probably 15,000 rds of WWI and WWII ammo in cloth bandoleers. There was a market for the bandoleers, not so much for the ammo. I saved some in a bucket - a little of each headstamp, but there really was no demand for it. I still have a few thousand rds linked for the MKII browning MGs.
WHAT???? I pay good money for all collectible 303 Brit. I just drove all the way to the SLICS cartridge show in St. Louis just to see what I could find. That vintage stuff is very collectible and is drying up fast!

Mike
 

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WHAT???? I pay good money for all collectible 303 Brit. I just drove all the way to the SLICS cartridge show in St. Louis just to see what I could find. That vintage stuff is very collectible and is drying up fast!

Mike
Advertised, offers for trades, tried ammo collectors at shows, no takers. Not to say there are no collectors, just not a lot of them ! It can be hard to connect ammo with people who want it -
 

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Very nice! It’s a shame that more original, period issued ammo has not been preserved for collections.
Oh, plenty has been saved; a common round in the collecting world.
 

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So was the 'SMLE', but there are always variations

Collect examples from every manufacturer.,
Collect examples from every year.
True, but the head count is so much higher with ammunition.
I've actually been looking for a round from the Hirwaun plant, mainly because Hirwaun was my base of operations in South Wales, so its kind of a souvenir as I'm not really a collector.
HN: Royal Ordnance Factory, Hirwaun, South Wales, UK. This factory was set up as part of the 1939-45 war emergency expansion plan. It was involved in the production of .303 cartridges in only a very limited way and is known to have manufactured Tracer G Mk 2 (in cases dated 1943 and 1944).
My friend's fathers Family farm is directly across Halt Rd, from the original factory gates.
 

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I picked up various small lots of 303 when I first got my No4. I have some FN, Greek HXP, about 2 boxes worth of soft point hunting ammo, and a lot of the 1960s POF in the fall apart cardboard. There was also a handful of 1940s (I think 1943?) from Radway Green in the mix. I will not be shooting it, but would be willing to part with it as my small firearms collection revolves around shooters, not collectibles.

I'm not sure about restrictions on shipping live ammo, so I would prefer not to ship.
 
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