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Discussion Starter #1
Franchi
Posted - 12/18/2003 : 5:19:57 PM
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Alexander, It does seem like 95% of all 7.35 is "SMI". I do have examples of a few other manufacturers.

Pirotechnia di Capua
Headstamp:
A.A C-39

Pirotechnia di Bologna
Headstamps:
T.M. B-38
C.A. B-39
C.A. B-40

Bombrini, Parodi & Delfino
Hedstamped:
BPD 940

The "BPD 940" Seems to be the next most common.
David Franchi
 

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Discussion Starter #2
DocAV
Posted - 11/09/2003 : 06:17:42 AM
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All 7,35 and 6,5 Italian Ammo was "Lubed"(the Bullet) as a metal fouling inhibitor ( the Cupro-Nickel projectiles were very bad barrel foulers)
20 round Breda clips usually have the entire round waxed, as an aid to extraction in LMGs ( due to the delayed blowback mechanism, quite violent extraction and the risk of case head rip-offs)as well as the Gun having an oil squirter incorporated in it.



Carcano
Posted - 12/26/2003 : 11:20:38 AM
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One adjacent note on the "lubing":

While the Russians also employed it testwise on the earliest M 91 Mosin-Nagant ammo (and found it useless or even counter-productive), the Swiss, whom most of us would believe to be experts in accurate shooting, opted for a lube ring on the case mouth of their GP 11 cartridges. Maybe the Italian idea wasn't so bad at all...
 

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Discussion Starter #3
7.35 Ammo - Headstamps & Types

7.35x51
Posted - 07/09/2005 : 10:01:09 PM
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Since this ammo was only produced by the Italians for a couple of years until the German idiot messed-up the Italian idiot's plans, I guess there's a very limited variety of ammo manufacturers, bullet types and headstamps for the 7.35x51, and that maybe just spanning the years 1938 to maybe 1940, or so?

Over the years I've only come accross/have the following headstamp/bullet types for 7.35x51 ammo: -

SMI-939 with a copper-like Spitzer FMJ bullet, looks like standard military ammo.

SMI-939 with a copper-like Spitzer SP (I guess this is likely a post-WW2 civilian 'salvage' of 'SMI 939' ammo, maybe a bullet-pull/substitution to make SP hunting ammo, making use of the original case, the primer (even is corrosive) and the charge.....at least, the exmples I have all show a pristing case with no sign of bullet pull, mechanical marks, or recrimping).

CA B39 with a nickel-like Semi-Spitzer FMJ bullet,looks like standard military ammo.

TM B39 with a nickel-like Semi-Spitzer FMJ bullet, looks like standard military ammo.

Anyone seen (or have) other 7.35 ammo with other headstamps, mabe from other places besides Italy, like perhaps Finland, or Israel?

Maybe we can put together a 'definitive' listing of what this ammo inventoty has consisted of with respect to manufacturers, headstamps and types.

Cheers - TY - Great Board & Users!



MPi-KM
Posted - 07/10/2005 : 04:16:47 AM
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I have some in the 20 round U shaped charger for the Model 1930 machine gun with the headstamp A A over C-39. The bullet is the nickel type.



7.35x51
Posted - 07/10/2005 : 1:04:27 PM
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Airdale - TY for drawing the Carcano pages to my attention. I had wrongly assumed that the inspectors' names were those that would be stamped on the firearms. It is an impressive step in accountability that the inspectors' two-letter ID found its way on to the ammo too.....which make the identification and cataloging task very much easier. TY!



Franchi
Posted - 07/11/2005 : 5:15:45 PM
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It seems like 95% of all 7.35 is "SMI 939". I have examples of the following manufacturers.
.
Societa Metallurgica Italiana
Headstamps:
S M I 938
S M I 939
.
Pirotechnia di Capua
Headstamp:
A.A C-39
.
Pirotechnia di Bologna
Headstamps:
T.M. B-38
C.A. B-39
C.A. B-40
.
Bombrini, Parodi & Delfino
Headstamped:
BPD 940
The "BPD 940" Seems to be the 2nd most common.
.
I have been looking for a 18 round box of 7.35 dated 1938 or 1940, so far I haven't found one. The closest I have gotten is an unopened box (I opened it) marked: 12 GEN. 1939 Anno XVII which had SMI 938 headstamped cartridges inside. (see photo link)
.
Finland was supplied 7.35 by Italy, you will find Italian box's re-labeled or re-boxed by Finland. Israel only had 8mm Caracno's.

David Franchi

Box
http://pic12.picturetrail.com/VOL439/2051017/4554207/104133207.jpg
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Box label close-up
http://pic12.picturetrail.com/VOL439/2051017/4554207/104133213.jpg



7.35x51
Posted - 07/13/2005 : 02:46:07 AM
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Great info - noted and recorded.....with thanks!

I agree, the 'SMI-939' seems to have represented some form of high-water mark.

Most such boxes I've seen are of the earlier months of 1939. 1940s seems to be rarer now and I guess 1938 is rarer because it may not have been a full year's production and it may have been the stuff that went north to Finland?

Thereafter, there seems to have been a distinct drop-off in production as, by then, the Italian General Staff must have realized the pickle they were in as matters spun out-of-contol during 1939.....and it dawned on them they would, for sure, be going in with the Germann and the Germans' allies and other co-conspiritors and that the war would have to be a 'come-as-you-are' affair. It was one this beating the tar off some poorly equiped northern Africans, but taking on some large and organized well equiped foe would be sonething else and would mandate near perfect logistics and lots of it!

Seems to me that the old adage of following the money is apt, here.

Ammo cost a lot when bought by the train or boat-load and no government (except maybe ours!) would want to make that investment unless there was a darned good reason, looking ahead.

Which leads me to believe that some time around late '38, or early '39, 'somebody' must have whispered in the Italian leadership's ears that they might want to reconsider their position with respect to making that caliber change to 7.35 because events might well not allow for much logistical flexibility (i.e., 'snafus') as the stakes in the game just got a lot higher.

That's my assessment of what can be gleaned from the timing of the early step back from going into massive exclusive full production on the 7.35.

Too bad, because I reckon with a rifle with little better sights it could have been a very handy weapon in the under 500m arena, let alone the 250m it was meant for.....but still about 35 years out-of-date for the 1930's due to;

- no fixed reciever bridge, on which to mount a better rear sight
and give far better aim
- bolt handle ahead of the bridge, like something out of the 1880's
- no bottom-closure for the mag. well, so it fills with nature
- no removeable mag./clip, so sustained rate-of-fire a bit slower
than it could have been for the Italian 'stormtrooper' wannabe's.
- no chromed barrel lining - so corrosive ammo and a typically laid
back Italian attitude to housekeeping would take its toll
- primative fifteenth century crossbow sights, must have been very
discoraging to take your best aim at a target at 200 meters knowing
you'd be lucky to hit it, but that is you missed they'd be a bit
upset with you and very likely shoot back at you with a modern,
well designed rifle - so maybe it would be easier to not take the
risk, so not shoot, then see if you could get a ride to a POW camp
in Canada
- poor excessive/escaping breech gas arrangements - nothing like a
face full of gas, debris and brass fragments in the eye to improve
your markmanship while under attack
- LOP too short by about 3/4", would have been ideal for the Nippons
- expensive and comlicated folding bayonet (an expensive tent peg),
why folding, maybe they were too used to seeing themselves as
hoodlums with flick knives?

I reckon the Carcano is a classic example of not knowing when to fold them and walk away. I guess they were just too cheap to put their considerable talent and engineering skill into producing a new and far more capable rifle since they were stuck in the rut created by their existing gun production machinery, a trained workforce and mountains of ammo.

But.....that's why I luv 'em - the rifle you luv to hate!



vernz
Posted - 07/16/2005 : 09:39:01 AM
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7.35x51 - a couple of thoughts on the cavalry carbine you commented on......
- no bottom-closure for the mag. well, so it fills with nature
- no removeable mag./clip, so sustained rate-of-fire a bit slower
than it could have been for the Italian 'stormtrooper' wannabe's.

The Mannlicher style ammo clip has been shown to be very fast in sustained fire. Unless you were carrying extra loaded magazines in a removable magazine rifle, you still had to stop to reload the mag using stripper clips. The M1 Garand used an 8 round mannlicher style clip vs the italian 6 round clip and that is certainly no slouch on timing to reload. The one achilles heel to the carcano and other bottom ejecting clip rifles is the opening for clip ejection. Definately an issue when fighting in mud and dirt. The Garand fixed that with top ejection.

- primative fifteenth century crossbow sights, must have been very
discoraging to take your best aim at a target at 200 meters knowing
you'd be lucky to hit it.

The fixed sights were really designed with battlefield realities in mind. Typical engagement distances were not beyond 300 yards or so. With the flat trajectory of the 6.5 x 52 round the fixed battle sight of 200 yards (I believe) put the bullet on a man sized target from about 50 - 300 yards or so (specifc data on this is available I just don't remember it now). This isn't very satisfying for those of us now using the rifle for target shooting but worked well on the battlefield.

- expensive and complicated folding bayonet (an expensive tent peg),
why folding, maybe they were too used to seeing themselves as
hoodlums with flick knives?

The folding bayonet is not as silly as it seems. Remember this is a cavalry carbine. By attaching the bayonet to the rifle it is always handy and you dispense with the cost and extra carry weight of a scabbard. The bayonet also serves as a ramp to allow easy insertion and removal of the rifle from a storage bucket without catching an anything.

Vern
 

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Discussion Starter #4
DocAV
Posted - 01/05/2006 : 10:40:49 AM
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OLD AMMO: Common markings for italian made 7,35 ammo:

SMI Societa Metallurgica Italiana of Campo Tizzoro (near Florence)
TM B 39 Pirotechnia Bologna, Inspector "TM" ( Chief Inspector of Ammunition of Bologna Army Ammunition factory, name "M...T..." ( initals reversed in Italian, surname first))
CA B 39 As above, but new inspector arrived later in 1939, Alfredo Cavalli, lasted till 1944,when plant was occupied by Allies in late 1944. Plant never re-opened after WW II, used as an Army Store till the 1980s, then demolished and redeveloped as residential property.

M38 ammo was only made from late 1938 to early 1940, and most of the production was shipped to Finland during WW II...That's why there is such a high survival rate of ammo and complete packets; The Finns did break down a lot of it to make 7,62x39 Full-length Blanks back in the 1960s, but several million rounds were sold through Interarms into the USA, but with very few rifles to shoot it with ( relatively speaking). primer quality has a away of going "off" after 70 odd years, especially in Italian made ammo. 7,35 ammo is now (or should be) in the realm of Collectability: Increasing rarity, only about 2 years actual production over all, and small variety of headstamps
known ( SMI, and Bologna; have not seen any BPD or Capua) BTW, Bologna was also the Italian Army's Ammo research and development plant, where the 7,35 cartridge was developed (1937) and first produced in 1938.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
vis35
Posted - 01/07/2006 : 02:42:22 AM
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I came across this round recently while I was poking thru a large box of random ammo. I have never seen anything in 7.35mm except ball ammo, I believe it is a frangible; here it is next to a standard ball round:

http://old.gunboards.com/uploaded/vis35/20061723652_735_1.jpg
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http://old.gunboards.com/uploaded/vis35/20061723720_735_2.jpg
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The weight of the Ball round is 309.5 grains, the frangible 278.2 grains, the frangible has a “cap” crimped on the tip of its bullet and there is a small bit of lead exposed at the tip.
Headstamp (C. A. B-40):

http://old.gunboards.com/uploaded/vis35/20061723759_735_3.jpg
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I have seen the 6.5mm version of these identified as both frangible and as short range, here is Fred Datig’s description of the same load in 6.5mm (I have some of these in my collection, but could not locate them tonight), from “Cartridges for Collectors, volume 3”:

http://old.gunboards.com/uploaded/vis35/20061723923_CFC V3 P20.jpg
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Here is Datig’s description of the 7.35mm frangible, from “Cartridges for Collectors, volume 2”:

http://old.gunboards.com/uploaded/vis35/20061723952_CFC V2 P22.jpg
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I think that they are actually frangible (bullets designed to break up when they hit and not ricochet), but with their lighter weight and a reduced powder charge perhaps they were used as short range rounds too.

Here is a picture for DocAV, these are 7.35mm ball rounds made by BPD in 1940 (I read your post on an earlier 7.35mm thread):

http://old.gunboards.com/uploaded/vis35/20061724039_4rdhs.jpg
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I have had these “rat holed” for almost 20 years because they were the best shooting 7.35mm ammo I ever fired. Still have 200+ rounds of them, they were packed on 20 round Breda MG strippers when I received them. I also remember shooting Capua made 7.35mm but had many misfires, don’t know if I still have any.

And last but not least, not 7.35mm related but it is a cute little box and it took me a few years to find one:

http://old.gunboards.com/uploaded/vis35/20061724126_380box.jpg
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Regards from Alaska,
Jeff Nowak




DocAV
Posted - 01/10/2006 : 10:53:56 PM
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Thanks for that update, Vis35:
I had not surveyed the Breda 38 (7,35 version of the Breda 30) ammunition supply ( also sent to Finland as well) to see the BPD and Capua Production.
As to your Round Nose: Is it a Magistri Design Frangible, for indoor target use, or is it the "Guard" shot cartridge ( Similar to the M91/95 Guard cartridge, with its exposed lead tip and fragmenting core?).
They are frangible, in that they break up on hitting the target, but their main Application was indoor or short outdoor Range use, where "overshoot" was a problem...most Military ranges in Italy were of from 50 metres to 300 metres, either fully under cover or Walled in enclosures; some of today's civilian ranges used for Milsurp shooting are of the 2-300 metre walled-in type.

They are not the commonly understood US "Frangible" (used in Aerial shooting at Windsocks/ Hardened skin Aircraft.)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
7,35mm ammo on MG clips, box

amafrank
Posted - 01/29/2006 : 12:06:15 AM
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I have 8 boxes of 100rds of 7.35 Carcano. The ammo is in 5 of the Breda 30 LMG type 20rd strippers per box and 7 of them are sealed unopened boxes. Boxes are dated May 39 and the headstamps appear to show 39 too.
I bought the ammo thinking it was 6.5mm and would fit my Breda 30. I should have read the boxes better..... any help is appreciated.
Thanks
Frank

http://old.gunboards.com/uploaded/amafrank/20061290342_Breda ammo box text.jpg
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http://old.gunboards.com/uploaded/amafrank/2006129060_Breda ammo in stripper.jpg
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Discussion Starter #8
jcjordan
Posted - 11/01/2006 : 7:30:37 PM
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Did the Finn's produce all the 7.35 ammo or did the Italians produce all or some? I got several hundred from a gent a few months ago & most cases were in sad shape so thought the primers might not be very good after all this time so I'm pulling the bullets to reload & wondering about who made it. The cases are all SMI marked but most bullets are cupro-nickel & some copper jacket FMJ, all the powder is the same short grain stick not the tubular solonite (or whatever it's called) that was used in Italian 6.5 but looks good so may reuse it.
In the buy I got an unopened box of 7.35 on the Breda chargers so if anyone is interested in the chargers I should have a few after finishing pulling the bullets.



DocAV
Posted - 11/02/2006 : 02:34:03 AM
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The Italians were the only country to make 7,35 ammo, and then only for about 18 months (from late 1938 to mid 1940). The major producer of 7,35 was SMI ( Societa' Metallurgica Italiana...Italian Metallurgy Inc) They were Copper and Brass manufacturers, and also prepared discs and cups for other ammo makers, along with coin "slugs" for the Mint. They got into Ammo manufacture before WW I, and are still suppliers of Military ammo now in 2006. (7,62 nato, etc).

The Finns received the Rifles in 7,35 and millions of rounds of ammo as Military aid in 1941-2, as they were allied against the Russians. The Finns relegated the nonstandard rifles and ammo to the backblocks, and in the 1950s started surplussing it all off. Some of the ammo was pulled down to make 7,62x39 Blanks, but the majority was sold to Interarms by the end of the 1950s and then flooded the US market.

sadly, it is now at the stage that the ammo is probably component use(bullet) only, and maybe Powder---solenite is very stable; The primer is Berdan, and odd size(.204--Nobody else ever had it),and corrosive. There was a way to drill out the pocket with a #4 Drill, to .209, and flatten the anvil and drill a central flash hole and use Boxer LR primers...but the resulting case web is thinned, and fails after one or two reloads, leaving a primer pocket with no bottom.One can also bore out the entire pocket and use shotshell primers, with reduced loads.

Easier to buy PPYU, Hornady or Graf cases, and reload.

Keep a few of those Boxed Breda Clips, as they are becoming Collector's items out there, as everybody has been stripping the ammo out of them. Tell me, are your Breda clips brass, tinplate or re-inforced cardboard?



jonk
Posted - 11/02/2006 : 08:53:39 AM
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In my experience, the 7.35 is usually surefire, while the 6.5 is not; perhaps because much of the 6.5 in the states now came out of rather nasty, humid places, while the finns stored it well?



DMala
Posted - 11/02/2006 : 1:18:16 PM
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The few times I saw others using surplus 7.35mm (never used it myself), hangfires were common, depite the fact that the ammo looked in good shape. Given its age, I would not assume that the brass still retain the necessary elasticity. Maybe I would recycle the ball powder (which is not solenite), but I have no info on how well it works these days (solenite is typically still good, but that's not relevant). Definitely recycle the bullets.



Arisaka fan
Posted - 11/02/2006 : 2:19:54 PM
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I have shot 500rds of 1939 dated 7.35 Ammo this year and only had 2 hangfires the cases did not show any signs of stress



jcjordan
Posted - 11/02/2006 : 6:18:40 PM
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Doc
IIRC the chargers are brass or at least that color & definitely not a cardboard like the Swiss clips are & are in VG shape just a little cleaning with brass cleaner & they'll be new.

I wasn't planning on using the cases (just going to get rid of them someway) but was going to reuse the powder as it still looks good (the powder isn't the tubular Solenite but an extruded like I4064 haven't smelled the container I'm putting it in to check smell yet) & should go off fine in a new case with a modern primer.

Some of the ammo looks like it was repacked at some point maybe postwar as I've come across a dozen or so bullets that look like the Buff Arms 130gr SP. I was wondering mainly if the Finns loaded any (so it might have been stored better) or if the Italians loaded any to Finn specs using the cupro nickel bullets as I've always thought the Italians used copper jackets only. Some of the rounds still look good enough to shoot but so far not many only about 100 of the 400 or so I've gone through will another few hundred to go.



DocAV
Posted - 11/05/2006 : 8:26:32 PM
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The Finns never loaded any at all, they just used ( or refrained from using) what they had got from Italy. The M38s saw very little if any at all action use...they were used for training and maybe rear echelon Guard work only.

Both CuproNickel and Gilding Metal was used by Italy in 7,35, although the 1940s saw a change to all gilding metal, for economy.
I would say that CuNi was dropped after the initial 1938 loadings...1939 and 1940 seem to be all Gilding metal.

As to "Finn specs", the Finns took what the Italians gave them in 1940, so NO "FinnSpecs". By the time the Finns received this charity, the Italians had already gone back to all 6,5mm production.



jcjordan
Posted - 11/13/2006 : 8:08:36 PM
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Thanks for info Doc - I did get to shoot some during vac last week, out of the 38 surplus I brought with me had 1 click & 2 click bangs & the rest went off ok. I had some reloads I did using the BA 150gr SP with I4895 & had some pressure spikes/blown primer problems so dumped them & back to the drawing board on load.
 
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