Tracing a cartridge to manufacturer

#1
Hi,
I'm researching a fiction novel and need to add some facts, for which I really need some help! The idea is that during WW2 an operative in a munitions factory is presented with a used cartridge that he made. The shot from that cartridge was used to shoot and kill an enemy in the field. Is that possible? Could a spent cartridge be traced back to the manufacturer and in theory with a batch number, back to the shift at least that produced it?
Thank you. If I'm in the wrong thread would someone be kind enough to point me in the right direction?
 

overopensights

ADC
Book Reviewer
#2
You would need the empty case, its cardboard packing carton or bandoleer, and ammo box, but you would be extremely very lucky to find any of these in a war situation. Also look up ammo 'batch numbers' to see how they work.
 
#3
Hi,
I'm researching a fiction novel and need to add some facts, for which I really need some help! The idea is that during WW2 an operative in a munitions factory is presented with a used cartridge that he made. The shot from that cartridge was used to shoot and kill an enemy in the field. Is that possible? Could a spent cartridge be traced back to the manufacturer and in theory with a batch number, back to the shift at least that produced it?
Thank you. If I'm in the wrong thread would someone be kind enough to point me in the right direction?
what year is this book set?
 
#15
Hi,
I'm researching a fiction novel and need to add some facts, for which I really need some help! The idea is that during WW2 an operative in a munitions factory is presented with a used cartridge that he made. The shot from that cartridge was used to shoot and kill an enemy in the field. Is that possible? Could a spent cartridge be traced back to the manufacturer and in theory with a batch number, back to the shift at least that produced it?
Thank you. If I'm in the wrong thread would someone be kind enough to point me in the right direction?

They were making hundreds of millions of rifle cartridges in about 70 factories back then.

Given the vast numbers, they did not usually use batch numbers at all. A typical .303" MkVII cartridge case will have a factory code and a year stamp on the base of the case, and its packaging might have factory code + day/month/year.

A day's production might be 400,000 rounds, from five to ten production lines, operated by three shifts.

So, you might have a very tenuous link back to a whole factory workforce on one day, but you'd need the ammunition packaging to even make that link.
 

DaManBugs

LE
Book Reviewer
#18
Hi,
I'm researching a fiction novel and need to add some facts, for which I really need some help! The idea is that during WW2 an operative in a munitions factory is presented with a used cartridge that he made. The shot from that cartridge was used to shoot and kill an enemy in the field. Is that possible? Could a spent cartridge be traced back to the manufacturer and in theory with a batch number, back to the shift at least that produced it?
Thank you. If I'm in the wrong thread would someone be kind enough to point me in the right direction?
You might have to work around that. Perhaps he found a set of tiny jeweller's dies (for stamping inside wedding-rings, etc) and decided to put his initials on the base of a cartridge just to see if it would work.

MsG
 

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