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  1. #1
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    .303 Inspection Rounds.

    Got these the other day thinking they were drill rounds but looking on TonyE's great web site i found out i was wrong again. They are inspection rounds which is what the U indicates. They are all WW2 dated Mark V, three Royal Laboratory Woolwich R/l\L and two Royal Ordnance Factory Blackpole B/l\E. Its interesting to see that some have anvils and fire holes some just anvils and one with neither. Every days a school day. Cheers Mick.

    PICT2930.jpgPICT2931.jpg

  2. #2
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    As far as I know, the specification was changed later in the war. With this change, cases from ordinary production with anvil and flash holes could be used.

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    Bullet Mick (9th November 2013)

  4. #3
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    As Falcon says, the U Mark V specification was relaxed during WW2 (as were several others for drill/dummy rounds) but the change was not formally approved until April 1945. Post war the Inspection rounds continued to often have anvil and fire holes and the cap chamber was painted red, a feature not in the original specification.

    The Inspection Mark V had been introduced in 1918 with a white metal case rather than a nickel plated brass case which was used in WW2 and later. Interstingly, those WWI inspection rounds used a solid bronze bullet either newly made or from the Mark VIIT tracer without filling.

    The differences in case finish can clearly be seen in the attached picture. The are (L. to r.) Inspection Mark IV with tinned brass case, WWI Inspection Mark V with white metal case and WW2 Inspection U Mark V with nickel plated brass case.

    Regards
    TonyE
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    Bullet Mick (9th November 2013), spotter (9th November 2013)

  6. #4
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    Thanks for that information Tony theres so many different variations of the 303 every time I pick one up its different to the last. Cheers Mick.

  7. #5
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    Inspection rounds can be almost as varied as drill rounds, as many of the early ones appear to have been either made or converted using ball cases.

    I have examples of all marks from Mark I (which has a "R/|\L 90 2" powder ball headstamp), and the Mark II can be found with Ball Mark II, IV or V bullets as the ball round progressed during the lifetime of the Inspection round.

    Also, most early ones seem to have lost their case tinning and some seem to have been plated at a later date. I will photograph some examples tomorrow and post them.

    Regards
    TonyE

  8. #6
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    Thanks Tony that would be great. Cheers Mick.

  9. #7
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    As promised here are some pictures of .303 inch Inspection rounds. I am sorry about the quality, as I normally like to use natural light outdoors, but it was pouring so had to make do with flash!

    Picture I

    Mark I - Headstamp "R/|\L I", small Boxer cap chamber
    Mark I - Made from powder Ball Mark I case. headstamp "R/|\L 90 2". Faint traces of tinning on case head.
    Mark I - Made from Proof Mark I case. Headstamp "R/|\L C PROOF I" (what a lovely headstamp, I wish I had it on a genuine Mark I Proof round!)

    Picture 2

    Mark II - Made from ball Mark IV case but with Mark II bullet. Headstamp "R/|\L C IV"
    Mark III - Headstamp "R/|\L 12 III"

    Picture 3

    Mark IV - Headstamp "R/|\L 16 IV"
    Mark V - First year. White metal case with inert bronze Mark VIIT tracer bullet. headstamp "R/|\L 18 V"
    Mark V - First year of plated case (war economy) Headstamp "B/|\E 42 UV"
    Mark 5 - Last year of production for Cadets. Intended to act as both Drill and Inspection. Made from ball 7z case. Headstamp "RG 73 7Z"

    Regards
    TonyE
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    Last edited by TonyE; 11th November 2013 at 07:17 PM.

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    Andysarmoury (24th May 2014), smle2009 (11th November 2013)

  11. #8
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    Thanks for that Tony I really appreciate you taking the time to photograph them for me. Mick.

 

 

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