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ident needed please

Hi im new to the ordnance side of things as you can tell by my other post . what i have here are two rounds given to me by the works manager at BSA the first one isnt marked but the second one has a stamped message on the side it says (its well polished cant make it out )FIRST ?? DR SHOP 1 RD SEPT 28 1941 B.S.A REDDITCH. Just wondering what type of round is it and is it the first round of its type thay made ???? :tinysmile_eyebrow_t


  • BSA ROUND PIC1.jpg
    BSA ROUND PIC1.jpg
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if you struggle to read some markings,try making a 'rubbing' by covering the markings with thin paper and rubbing over the paper to tranfer the markings.
You could also lay the item on a printer and print out copies at diffrent light and dark settings.

If this dosnt help get a very soft pencil (6b) and rub the lead on you finger untill black then rub gently across markings with finger.

Either way doesnt harm the finish.
Hi Richard101,

From the pictures, it looks very much like they are 15mm Besa rounds. The 2 sets of driving bands on the bullet are very distinctive, but I could be more certain if you could give some dimensions of both the case and bullet. The headstamps are interesting, as Kynoch were making this ammunition by 1939 at least, I believe, but by 1941 there would have been more information than just the date and the Z to show it was loaded with nitrocellulose powder.
it is 15 mm across the bands That would make sence as we made the besa I've a few photos I found at work of a test fire of a besa as an AA gun I take it it may of been the first round fired on a test or something?!?!?!
Yes, could well be. As there is no info on the case head as to the type of round (i.e., tracer, AP, etc) it could well be just a ball round, and be used for test-firing the guns; - perhaps the first gun made in a particular factory/ workshop.
15mm BESA Ball

Those are both 15mm BESA ball loads, as both the headstamps are known. These are essentially training rounds a the core is mild steel as opposed to AP quality hardened steel. The first British rounds were made by Kynoch in 1938.

The oval shaped firing pins are very typical of Czech weapons of that period and can be found on the BESA 7.92mm and Bren gun.

Probably the rounds you have commemorate the first rounds fired from guns produced at BSA Redditch. It makes sense that these would be ball rounds as AP rounds tend to do nasty things to the range backstop!