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  1. #1
    Member Kyle M.'s Avatar
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    Help identify these two cartridges?

    I hope this is the right place for this. I found these awhile back going through my late grandfathers stuff. I'm usually pretty good at identifying old cartridges but these two have me stumped, he had no centerfire rifles so that doesn't help narrow it down either.

    Originally I thought they were the same cartridge and one just had the bullet seated deeper but on further inspection the shoulders, body taper, and bullet diameter are different.

    The left cartridge has a bullet diameter of .303"-.305" and seems to have a cupro-nickel jacket. Rim diameter is .540", rim thickness is .052", case length is 2.308", and overall length is 2.920" The Headstamps appears to be F 5 02. The headstamp font is tiny and almost illegible.

    The right cartridge has a bullet diameter of .307"-.308" again appearing to be a cupro-nickel jacket. Rim diameter of .540", rim thickness is .058", case length is 2.308", and overall length is 3.064". The headstamp appears to be K 9 88.

    Many thanks for any info, I'm thinking the one on the left may very well be .30-40 Kragicon, the one on the right has me stumped.


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    Advisory Panel Parashooter's Avatar
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    Actually, they're both probably .30/40 Kragicon. The one on the left likely has its projectile pushed into the neck farther than normal, leading you to mistake a measurement on the ogive for its major diameter. Pull the bullet back out and you might find it's closer to .308". The variation in body taper and shoulder form is normal, since in a rimmed design these dimensions are not especially critical as long as not too large for the chamber.

    Here's a SAAMI chamber drawing -



    And a comparison of fired and unfired .30/40 cases -


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    Contributing Member CINDERS's Avatar
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    I think the drawings got fired off Para along with the cases..........!

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    Member Kyle M.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Parashooter View Post
    Actually, they're both probably .30/40 Kragicon. The one on the left likely has its projectile pushed into the neck farther than normal, leading you to mistake a measurement on the ogive for its major diameter. Pull the bullet back out and you might find it's closer to .308". The variation in body taper and shoulder form is normal, since in a rimmed design these dimensions are not especially critical as long as not too large for the chamber.

    Here's a SAAMI chamber drawing -

    https://www.milsurps.com/attachment....12&cid=1&stc=1

    And a comparison of fired and unfired .30/40 cases -

    https://www.milsurps.com/attachment....13&cid=1&stc=1

    Thanks that would make sense. I canít believe that in the nearly two years Iíve had these I never noticed that the shorter round had a big crack in the neck. I was able to pull the bullet by hand with very little resistance and the case is empty. I can hear loose powder in the other. I guess these will display nicely with the 1884 & 1886 .45-70 cartridges I found with them.
    Last edited by Kyle M.; 03-12-2021 at 02:59 AM.

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    Contributing Member CINDERS's Avatar
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    Well that's a first the links were not showing up at all

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    Really Senior Member butlersrangers's Avatar
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    The .30-40 cartridge on the left is likely Frankford Arsenal, May, 1902 production.

    The .30-40 cartridge on the right is likely from the 1898 Kynoch contract.
    (Possibly, you have incorrectly recorded the month/year marking)?
    It is probably loaded with Cordite powder.

  11. #7
    Member Kyle M.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by butlersrangers View Post
    The .30-40 cartridge on the left is likely Frankford Arsenal, May, 1902 production.

    The .30-40 cartridge on the right is likely from the 1898 Kynoch contract.
    (Possibly, you have incorrectly recorded the month/year marking)?
    It is probably loaded with Cordite powder.
    I was thinking the one on the right might be Kynoch but wasn't expecting the U.S. military to have a contract with Kynoch for ammo. I'ts hard to tell but that could definitely be a '98 not '88 that I'm seeing. When shaking the cartridge it doesn't quite sound like loose powder so I'm guessing it's cordite.

  12. #8
    Really Senior Member butlersrangers's Avatar
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    During the Spanish American War, Frankford Arsenal could not meet ammunition demands of the U.S. Army.

    Contracts were let with Union Metallic Cartridge Company, U.S. Cartridge Company, Winchester, and Kynoch.



    There were problems with the ammunition from some of these contracts.

    Apparently, there were problems with the performance of cordite in the .30-40 Kragicon.

    There were problems with the other makes also.

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