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Update 28.11.2000

G.O.W. Kickback:

Questions and Answers, Part 9

Answered by: P. T. Kekkonen


Silencer for a Colt revolver
revsildw.jpg (18790 bytes)
I enjoyed your site. It is very helpful to me. I need some details, I hope you will help me. I need to know how to make a silencer for a .22 revolver (Colt), I need part drawings, exact dimensions etc. If you could not able to give me the details please guide me at which site I can get the details at free of cost.

Thanking you; Surya


answer.GIF (573 bytes)  It is a very frustrating effort to build and mount a silencer to a Colt revolver, because of a loud escapement of high-pressure powder gasses through a gap between rear end of a barrel and the cylinder. The gas bleed shall annihilate effect of any silencer mounted on the revolver muzzle. There are some constructions, tried or existing, sealing the cylinder cap, but they are too complicated for amateur gunsmiths to carry out, like gas-seal pistons, Broadwell gas seal (applicable to .22 caliber Dan Wesson revolver only; see photo beside) and some other mechanical devices. (See illustration from Finnish GOW site, article "Kaasutiivis revolveri").

It is advisable to forget the idea and wait patiently arrival of Mexican Aguila .22 "Colibri" cartridges in your home country. They are "silent without a silencer" even when shot from a revolver. Striking power of the bullet is not high, but it is sufficient for short-range target practice and many other purposes.

2611 MM; PT


Coefficients

Came across your web site, and I have a question about bullets. A foreign term that literally translates as "bullet-shape coefficient" or "bullet coefficient" is described as: "represents the relative value of the relationship between the bullet's shape and air drag." Any idea what this term might be referring to? A different term is used for ballistic coefficient.

I appreciate your help. Thanks! Richard


answer.GIF (573 bytes)  These coefficients are based on the test-shootings with a Krupp Standard Projectile of solid steel or cast iron with a plain base, cylindrical shank and sharp point. B.C. of this projectile is 1.00. It had typical shape of contemporary (1881) armor piercing artillery projectiles with the relative dimensions as follows: C = caliber/diameter. Overall length 3 times C. Length of cylindrical shank 1.7 C. Point length 1.3 C. Radius of point 2 C. As far as I can remember, caliber of the Krupp's Standard Projectile was 30 millimeters, and length of it was 90 mm.

Despite of higher sectional density of jacket and core materials of usual modern rifle bullets, along with their much more streamlined shape (= more peaked point and boat-tail base), no bullet with caliber less than 12.7 millimeters/ .50 inch is able to reach the Ballistic Coefficient 1.00. (Even the 12.7 mm bullet needs Depleted Uranium core?). "Bigger is better", because overall length of a projectile, stabilized by rotation from rifling, cannot be much more than 5 C long. Example given: .308 times 5 = 1.54. Bullet with diameter .308 inch should be no more than 1.54 inch long.

Usually it is shorter, because 5 C long bullet needs a steep rifling twist (9.45 inches) for stabilization. This twist is common in many European military rifles, including Russian Mosin-Nagant, Kalashnikov AK 47/ AKM and variations of them. The Ballistic Coefficient (B.C.) is a calculated ratio between measured air resistance "drag" of an actual bullet and resistance drag of the Krupp's Standard Projectile.

Drag of a small bullet is, example given, two times as high as drag of bigger Krupp Standard Projectile: A simple division gives B.C. = or .50. So the Standard Bullet has doubled ability to edge it's way through the air resistance, when compared with a small bullet. (Ballistic Coefficient .50 is very high for a medium-sized bullet like a caliber .308 projectile).

If B.C. of a small bullet is .25, it's ability to overcome air resistance is one fourth, when compared with a Standard Projectile. The things seems to be simple, but the B.C. depents also on the bullet velocity. So it is average of averages and some bullet manufacturers are giving the flight velocity area, where the claimed B.C. is approximately correct.

All those terms you mentioned means the same: A ratio of air drags between an "actual bullet" and almost 120 years old Krupp's Standard Projectile. Some examples from a Lapua bullet catalog: Highest B.C. is .675 (.338 caliber Scenar bullet, weight 250 grains), next .662 (.338 Lock Base, 250 grs) and third .615 (6.5 mm Scenar, 139 grs). Lowest B.C. is .029 (.32 S & W lead wadcutter, 83 grs).

2611 MM; PT


6.5 x 53R Russian

I have recently acquired a rifle in caliber 6.5 x 53R, a Russian biathlon rifle. Looks like VihtaVuori publishes data for this caliber, but from where can one obtain dies for this cartridge? Or were any ever specifically made for it? If not, is there a preferred way to reload using dies of another caliber, etc?

Cheers, Dave


answer.GIF (573 bytes)  I have no information about dimensions of Russian 6.5 mm rimmed cartridge, but the bullet diameter is presumably similar to Japanese 6.5 x 50 mm Arisaka cartridge, which was the very first "assault rifle" cartridge in the world. An assault rifle is "ABTOMAT" (= avtomat) in Russian and the first assault rifle was designed by V.G. Fyodorov in 1916. Contemporary Russian military cartridge was 7.62 x 53R with a pointed bullet which was not accurate. 7.62 mm cartridge generated also too heavy recoil in a light automatic rifle, especially when the full-automatic fire was shot.

Rimmed case of 7.62 mm Mosin cartridge was also a source of jams when fed from a box magazine. Designer Fyodorov was examined Japanese 6.5 mm cartridges, captured during Russo-Japanese War in 1904 - 05, and found it to be fit for his Avtomat rifle when loaded with somewhat reduced charge. 6.5 mm Arisaka cartridges were loaded in Russia presumably already during WW I for the snipers, since 7.62 mm Mosin cartridge with a light pointed bullet was unfit for sniping use, being not accurate enough. It was thought that a Maxim machine gun could substitute a sniping rifle, but it was a wrong idea: Burst of a heavy wheeled machine gun isn't as efficient as a well-placed shot from an accurate sniping rifle towards a "valuable target".

In 1920s there were several variations of Fyodorov Avtomat tried in Soviet-Russia, including light machine gun versions (some of them with water-cooling jackets), and 6.5 x 50 mm cartridges were produced in Russia for these trials plus for Avtomat assault rifles, issued to some special troops. Finns captured them still during Russo-Finnish Winter War in 1939 - 40. Accuracy of 7.62 mm Mosin cartridges (especially bullets) was, however, improved after the great cartridge reform in and since 1930 (with assistance of Germans until 1933 or '34).

In late 1920s suggested V.G. Feodorov adoptment of 6.5 mm Avtomat with a shortened case, being still an advocate of 6.5 mm caliber, but his idea was "too much too early". Production equipment for 6.5 mm bullets was still existing. Unfortunately I don't know history of 6.5 x 53R cartridge, why and when this "factory wildcat" was designed. For military use Russians produced 7.62 mm cartridges only (in rifle and machine gun class, including revolvers, pistols and submachine guns) until adoptment of 9.25 mm cartridges for pistols and machine pistols since late 1940s and 5.45 x 40 mm cartridge for Avtomat since 1974 or '75.

Finnish "factory wildcat" 6.3 x 53R Finnish is equipped with .257 caliber bullet (with Metric diameter max. 6.55 millimeters). 6.3 mm is a nominal or approximate bore diameter of Finnish rifles while bore diameter of Russian rifle is 6.5 mm and bullet diameter is presumably 6.70 to 6.73 mm in Metrics. Some Finnish writers have sometimes called Finnish cartridge by incorrect and confusing designation "6.5 x 53R", using bullet diameter, not the bore diameter, as a caliber reading.

Some gunsmiths are probably drilled and rifled barrels for shooting of 6.5 mm Swedish Mauser bullets too, but the real Finnish 6.5 x 53R custom-made rifles are rarities. Handloading data for 6.3 x 53R Finnish cartridge is applicable for your Russian rifle, but it is published for light or medium-weight bullets only, because usual rifling twist of 6.3 mm Finnish rifle was "slow", 1 in 10 inches. Just the maximum loads are listed. They are for 70 grs Sako FMJ bullets and 25.5 grs of VihtaVuori N110 powder, for 83-grainer Sako SP bullets: 40.3 grains of VV N140 powder and for 93 grs Sako SP bullet: 36.7 grs of VV N140.

Muzzle velocities from 24 inch test barrel are for 70 grs bullet 2940 fps with chamber pressure 39900 psi (mild load), for 83 grs bullet 3000 fps with 49300 psi pressure and for 93 grs bullet 2950 fps with 49300 psi, which is safe maximum pressure for old bird-shooting rifles and many times reloaded brass.

Reloading dies may be hard to get. On the List of RCBS Custom Made Dies exists 6.5 x 53R, but I afraid that it means Dutch & Rumanian 6.5 mm Mannlicher caliber. RCBS Custom Die Shop may ream to you set of dies, if you'll send to them a couple of cartridges or empty shells (one discharged in your rifle and another from a disassembled cartridge), but the custom work may be expensive. In theory you may use 6.5 Remingtom Magnum set of dies for neck resizing (only) and bullet seating. You need also a shellholder for 7.62 x 53R Russian cases. This is said, however, without knowledge on dimensions of 6.5 x 53R cartridge.

2511 MM; PT


Light loads for 5944

Looking for a load using 145 - 147 grain lead bullets for my 9mm S & W 5944. Using this in competition so not looking for hot loads. Mild and accurate is the ticket. Please write back all help is appreciated thanx.

James


answer.GIF (573 bytes) Sorry, I don't know whether S & W 5944 is a pistol or revolver! The most fresh Gun Digest in my bookshelf is 41st Annual Edition, and I cannot give any loading data for firearms unknown to me. (I am also advocate of S & W Boycott). You must consult handloading manuals/handbooks or information websites like <hpchelp@swbell.net> or <help@hodgdon.com>

2411 MM; PT


Magtech .22 magazines

I have just recently purchased a Magtech .22 rifle and I lost the clips for it and I was wondering if you could help me to locate where I can purchase them I would appreciate it.

Thanks; J.B.


answer.GIF (573 bytes)  I don't know, where you're living! In our country (Finland) is importer of Magtech .22 rifles and spare parts a firm Asetalo Oy. E-mail: asetalo@sci.fi or a website: www.saunalahti/asetalo. Clips (10 rds) for Magtech M7022 are available regularly.

2411 MM; PT


Red Dot substitutions for subsonics

I previously sent in a request about handloading 7 x 57 mm as subsonics. Your response (1306 MM) was much appreciated. However, I have one question: I have a supply of Winchester AA 452 ball powder. Can I substitute it for Red Dot, or should I only use Red Dot?

Thanks in advance. Larry
PS. I love your site.


answer.GIF (573 bytes)  I haven't found information about relative burning rate and ignition sensitivity of AA 452 from available literature, but ball powders with smooth (non-porous) surface may be too risky for use in Supu loads! Powder may be too insensitive to ignite. All information on AA 452 is that Winchester loads (or has loaded) it into 12 gauge AA shotshells, using rather high loading density.

So, better safe than sorry! Powders, as flammable as RD or more easy to ignite than Red Dot, are O.K. for subsonic rifle loads, but I think it is advisable to use Red Dot, because you have reliable tested loading data for RD, which seems to be about as versatile propellant as our VihtaVuori N310 for mild loads from .22 Short Gallery to 20 x 138 mm Anti-Tank rifle cartridges, or "hiiresta hirveen"/ "from mice to moose".

2011 MM; PT


About Silencers

A silencer researcher told me once that it made a lot of difference in the peak sound pressure emitted by a silencer if the last washer over the end of the .22 type silencer was rubber made of inner tube rubber. He said that any solid object passing through a rigid orfice caused a pop from the slipstream impacting on the rigid washer. He said rubber could give or even expand its hole size to reduce that impact.

He said he had researched a lot of muffler configurations using a peak reading sound pressure meter 6 inches from the exit end, and made the devices only good enough to cut the sound pressure to the same level generated by the semiauto action clak. He also said he found not much improvement by stuffing as it cut expansion volume about as much as it added gas cooling.

He used about a foot of 1.5 inch sink drain brass pipe, with about 3 inches over the barrel to give rigid support, and about 4 equispaced chambers made by .3 hole diameter washers soldered to the inside of the tubing, or held in place by external ring crimps made with a dulled pipe cutter. He clued an inner tube disk over the end, and shot a hole through it and used hot iron to burn it out to about .3 inch dia.

He said the noise was not much reduced by less diameter holes, and the risk of misaligment from temp changes did not justify smaller holes. He said if anything touched the bullet it went wild, and the ancient practice of using wipes was only good for close combat use of silenced weapons.

2 washers soldered to the barrel end and back about 3 inches were soldered to the barrel end of the 1.5 inch tubing to make is rigid. The barrel end washer had about 4 holes in it to allow the space behind it to be used for expansion of the first chamber. He soldered it on because he said there is no reliable way to remove silencers from a barrel end without making significant changes in bullet impact point, which vary each time the thing is put on. Your readers may benefit from this. He was an English gentleman who hunted small game with a silenced .22.

OH yeah, another thing he said was that by drilling the barrel exactly 2 inches from the bolt face, or cutting it off at 2 inches length and putting the silencer on that stub, all makes of .22 LR had the fire put out just about 900 to 1000 fps, whether they were hi speed or hyper velocity .22 LR. That correlated with the 2 inch .22 Derringers which fire all .22 ammo at subsonic velocity. The concept of obtaining subsonic from supersonic ammo by putting out the powder burn through dropping its pressure which puts its burning out entirely in practice, was novel. I think he published that so it is not patentable anymore.

E.D.



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TITBITS FROM THE WEB

BEST COMEBACK OF THE NEW MILLENNIUM

Gotta love those gun control advocates.... I was listening to the radio the other day, and I heard one of the all-time best comeback lines in my life. NOTE: This is an exact replication of National Public Radio (NPR) interview between a female broadcaster, and US Army General Reinwald who was about to sponsor a Boy Scout Troop visiting his military installation.

FEMALE INTERVIEWER: "So, General Reinwald, what things are you going to teach these young boys when they visit your base?"
GENERAL REINWALD: "We're going to teach them climbing, canoeing, archery, and shooting."

FEMALE INTERVIEWER: "Shooting! That's a bit irresponsible, isn't it?"
GENERAL REINWALD: "I don't see why, they'll be properly supervised on the rifle range."

FEMALE INTERVIEWER: "Don't you admit that this is a terrribly dangerous activity to be teaching children?"
GENERAL REINWALD: "I don't see how? We will be teaching them proper rifle discipline before they even touch a firearm."

FEMALE INTERVIEWER: "But you're equipping them to become violent killers."
GENERAL REINWALD: "Well, you're equipped to be a prostitute, but you're not one; or are you?!"


The radio went silent. The interview ended.

2111 MM; PT


Finnish firearms laws in English?

Hello! I plan to send you some money to support your website at my earliest opportunity. Can you direct me to any Web site that has the current Finnish firearms laws in English? There's a chance I'll be visiting your country within the next year. I gather that things have tightened up there considerably of late.

Best, Michael


answer.GIF (573 bytes) Finnish firearms legislature is still somewhat unfinished, although the Firearms Law became valid in March 1st 1998. I made some times ago a description on Finnish firearms laws and acts since 1903 until alternatives in future: Grim End (a Global disarmament of civilians by the dictates of United Nation politicians), or a Happy End (= Global extermination of all anti-gun zealots).

Classifying of firearms in Finnish firearms law was incomplete in my earlier description. Minimum allowed dimensions are as follows: Shoulder arms, including a shotgun: Barrel length 400 millimeters (15.75 inches) from the muzzle to frontal surface of breech-bolt, block, or frame of a breaking shotgun or combination gun. Minimum overall length of all shoulder arms should be 840 millimeters (33.07 inches), measured parallel to bore axis. If shoulder firearm has folding or telescopic buttstock, the minimum overall length should be 840 millimeters with the buttstock folded or collapsed. Shorter shoulder arms are also possible to acquire and possess, but they need an Exceptional Firearm Licence (EFAL).

Rifled shoulder arms (especially those shooting .22 rimfire cartridges) may have a shortened barrel. Firearms law has a wording: "Length of rifle barrel or tube should be at least 400 millimeters". The "tube" means in Finland usually a silencer or suppressor (without a quickly detachable mounting), but also a permanently mounted muzzle brake, compensator, flash hider or a piece of metal tubing, permanently fastened to be an extension of barrel. Combined length of barrel itself and the attached device should be 400 mm and the overall length of shoulder firearm should be 840 millimeters in every case.

(This is my personal explanation or "interpretation" of legislative wording hard to understand. In Finland dictated Police Ministry officials the paragraphs of firearms laws and acts, along with "directives", actually dictates of European Union). Handguns are graded to two main categories, namely "target/ sporting handguns" and "pocket handguns". (The previous third category, "military handguns", is removed from legislative wording; thank God!).
p7.jpg (22706 bytes)
Pocket pistol is (usually a self-loading) handgun fitting into a rectangular box or frame with a length 180 millimeters (7.09 inches) and a width 130 millimeters (5.12 inches). A pocket revolver is a wheel-gun, fitting into the rectangular box or frame with a length 190 mm (7.48 inches) and width 140 mm (5.51 inches). Before measurement the clip/magazine of a pistol must be removed. (Risum teneatis, amici? Who's carrying a pistol without an attached magazine?). This dictate prevents purposely possession of inexpensive and very accurate Russian Makarov PM pistol for target practice. German Heckler & Koch P-7 is also a "horrribly dangerous pocket pistol: As dangerous as a recoilless anti-tank launcher or a machine gun!".


9 mm Pistol in Finland: Dangerous. Difficult to get license for. Suppressor: Means of hearing protection. No licenses needed.


Handgun should also be equipped with it's standard sights, standard grip/ grip panels before that ridiculous "box-game", and all non-standard attached devices (a muzzle brake, recoil compensator, a silencer/ suppressor or an extra-long barrel) increasing dimensions of a pistol or revolver must be removed.

Other especially dangerous firearms are: A recoilless gun ("sinko" in Finnish), a mortar, a breech-loading artillery piece (if made in 1890 or later), any other weapon with construction and use similar to those "tools of warfare" (including anti-tank rifle with caliber 20 mm or more. Russian 14.5 mm PTRD needs no brutal deactivation, although it's cartridges are in use for machine guns of some Russian-made armored vehicles of Finnish Army). Guided missiles and rocket-launcher systems are especially dangerous weapons, of course.

Firearms able to shoot full-automatic (burst) fire are also especially dangerous weapons. So are also "firearms, disguised to look an object other than a firearm". Jesh, a single shot "zip-gun" looking like a marker pen and shooting .22 BB Caps is as horrible assassination instrument as "Stalin's Organ"/"Katysha" rocket launcher! So are, of course, a cane gun, an umbrella gun or a noiseless little device, looking like a cigarette lighter but throwing a Librascope-type flechette by a "captive piston" system. The category of especially dangerous firearms was dictated from "Socintern" or European Union.

Everybody know that it is impossible to control illegal manufacturement and possession of these curios in democratic community, but some bureaucrats have a dream: A social-democratic community (Confederate of Europe) where nobody is outside the strict control, based on a dense network of informers. Just like in bygone Red Russia? Jesh! Another new conception, "especially/ extremely dangerous ammunition", arrived also from European Union to Finnish legislature, along with a still more ridiculous conception: "ERVA projectiles". (ERVA derives from Finnish words ERITYISEN VAARALLINEN). Cartridges designed and made for armor penetration are ERVA. Cartridges with explosive or incendiary projectiles are ERVA. (Cartridges with tracer projectiles are "harmless"). Cartridges for centerfire pistols and revolvers with hollow-point bullets "or projectiles with expansion effect after the hit" are also ERVA.

(Non-ERVA handgun projectiles are Full Metal Jacketed bullets, but also solid bullets of copper, brass or aluminium-bronze, like French "ARCANE" or "T.H.V." bullets. Solid lead alloy bullets - even soft lead bullets - are also non-ERVA projectiles). Cartridges designed and manufactured for production of splinters are ERVA. (This is an incomprehensive paragraph: May mean cartridges with frangible bullets?). Cartridges with an arrow projectile (single flechette?) are ERVA. Wording is really not a plural: "Projectiles"! (Multiple-flechette shotshells may be non-ERVA?). Cartridges loaded with more than one bullet are ERVA.

Possession of loose bullets (ERVA projectiles) is illegal if they are armor piercing, incendiary or explosive bullets, or hollow-point (and jacketed softpoint?) bullets for handguns. Hell-of-a mess! Our legislators had really not a faint idea about terminology on firearms and ammunition! And the bureaucrats (really "rats" or "pigs") will never consult authorities on firearms when they are enacting laws or acts.

1511 MM; PT


"Re-birth" of deactivated L-39

Hi PT, thanks for the reply on my L-39 question. I understand your situation on the "donations" from the English speakers and I hope I can help that by at least paying my own way. Cash should be easy enough for you to handle.

I am a little confused by your term: regenerated. You mentioned someone you warned of shooting full powered ammo in a regenerated gun that had a disaster. How was his gun deactivated and repaired? My L/39 was deactivated by drilling two 13mm holes in the side of the chamber and welding a plug in the back of the chamber. I have removed the plug and it is my intent to sleeve the chamber, at least to the shoulder of the case with a sleeve made from 4340 steel of 32mm dia and then recutting the chamber. The sleeve will be shrunk in place by cooling with liquid nitrogen and heating the barrel to about 150-200C and pressing the sleeve in.

I would then install plugs in the holes in the sides of the chamber by threading them in with a small step into the sleeve to prevent it from sliding. The outer threads on the barrel would then be cut into the plugs so they would be supported by the receiver when the barrel is installed. The steel I am using is rated at 125,000/ psi tensile in the normalized state and has a hardness that is very similar to the barrel steel so I believe it should support the full powered ammunition. If you think I am mistaken in this please tell me. I have seen chambers repaired in this way before without problems but...? I can have a barrel made and chambered but I will have to contour the outside and thread for all the fittings/gasport sleeve etc. I am trying to avoid this time and expense but I do value health more than money and appreciate advice from experienced parties.

Thanks again; Frank

answer.GIF (573 bytes) Cash seems to be only reasonable/ possible way to transfer donations from other countries to Finland. Our P.O.Box was hired in July 1st '99 mainly for easy and inexpensive transfers. Finnish Marks are easiest to use for acquirement of daily bread, marge, beer and insulin, but it is also easy to exchance US dollar bills; not over the tables of the moneychangers (banks) but directly with my friends travelling (weekly!) to Russia from Joensuu. There is a distance mere 50 miles from my home to the closest Niirala Checkpoint of Russian border. (Town Joensuu is more eastern than Istambul in Turkey!).
l39it.jpg (12663 bytes)
I see your plan to regenerate L-39 is correct and safe. Finnish deactivation method is about similar: Drilling through chamber walls and plugging the chamber with a hardened crosswise installed steel cylinder, fastened by welding both ends of steel plug. There is also a triangular piece of breech-bolt head ground away. Very difficult to regenerate by welding additional metal without deterioration of original annealing of the breech-block. Striker channel is also plugged by welding and the firing pin (point of a striker) is cut off during THE Felony known as deactivation. That word "re-generatio" is Latin, and it means literally: "Give a birth another time".

I've got some additional information about the accident with handloaded 20 x 138 mm cartridge: It was actually not a Reduced Charge Detonation but a mere "Habitual Over-charge Explosion". Cartridge case was almost FULL of VihtaVuori powder N110! (It's burning rate is par with IMR-4227 or SR-4759. N110 may be loaded into .357 and .44 Magnum revolver cartridges). A simpleton who loaded the "Elephant Gun" cartridge could not tell the charge weight, as he had no powder scale at all! His load is, however, able to wreck even the "factory mint" L-39 or 20 mm Anti-Aircraft machine cannon L-40, also shooting 20 mm Solo Longs. Reduced charges of N110 may be safe in 20 x 138 mm Solo Long cartridges, especially in those cases turned from a bar stock, with cylindrical powder space.

Idea of sleeved or "pallisered" chamber allows use of cases with less complicated shape, like rimmed one with almost parallel sides. If you can get easily available 20 x 103 mm cases with outside dimensions close to 20 mm Solo Long, you may chamber your L-39 for cartridges loaded into them with reduced powder charges. Please, send the dimensioned drawing of 20 x 103 mm case to our mail box if you are able to get or make a drawing. I'll compare it's dimensions with 20 mm Solo Long case. It is not easy to send drawings by E-mail (known as "The Illustration Scrambler), even from European countries. Paper copies are therefore always preferable.

PS. Your letter, stamped Nov 06 00 arrived (Nov 10) today to our P.O.BOX. Many thanks for your allowance! Good luck to reactivating project! I presume, you'll get a functioning "Norsupyssy" (= an "Elephant Gun" in Finnish; a pet name of L-39).

1011 MM; PT


Subject: Caseless firearms & ammo

For a start, congratulations on guns.connect.fi. It is fantastic, very educational. Excellent work.

But I was wondering if you GOW crew will do an article on caseless ammunition. The materials involved, the history, et cetera. I know very little about the Voere and G11 caseless rifles. I would be interested to know if today's caseless propellent has any link to the old RDX.

Also, I am making my own non-profit wesbite with information about guns and other tools of modern warfare. I was wondering if any of you would have the time to have a look, and make suggestions on how I can improve the site. It would be good to have professionals tell me where I have made mistakes, so I can correct them.

Thanks, bye; Scooby.


answer.GIF (573 bytes) We have presumably less knowledge on the caseless ammo than you. Especially I have lost my interest on the subject several years ago, because it seems to be as possible innovation as the "Perpetuum Mobile", if adopted to the modern assault rifle. Well-known "cook-off" problem of cartridges and sealing problems of firearms remain still unsolved. I know nothing about Voere caseless rifle and very little about G11, which has a rotating action, derived from Lorenzoni's flintlock firearms, loaded with loose powder from a magazine and bullets from another tubular magazine, or Dreyse "gallery rifle", shooting cartridges or actually hollow-base bullets with a primer and tiny charge of black powder in the extra deep base cavity.

Contemporary American Volcanic bullet was similar but Volcanic action was different, a lever action with tubular magazine. Dreyse gallery rifle had an action known as a "loading tap" (not uncommon in modern air rifles) and somewhat tricky striker mechanism with a needle-like firing pin, derived from Dreyse's bolt-action military rifle Model 1841. So much about the history. More recent designs of caseless cartridges and caseless firearms are not interesting enough to the specialists on special handloading of the cased cartridges. If the caseless cartridges shall become sometimes adopted, they'll be issued "for Military or otherwise Official Use Only". Our ambition is distribution of information for the common people, on the "do-it-yourself" basis.

The most promising caseless concept was known as Daisy .22 VL, actually an air (spring & piston) rifle, planned to become for sale also to the common people. .22 VL bullet had a small solid (presumably porous) cylinder of compressed smokeless powder fastened on bullet's base. The air, suddenly compressed and pressurized by a piston stroke, was hot enough to ignite that "booster charge" positively. Rush of compressed air kept the bore clean. Power of shot was about par with .22 Long rimfire rifle when the VL bullets were shot, but it was possible to shoot also usual .22 caliber air rifle pellets, if less high power (and less noise) was needed.

Idea of "Diesel engine ignition" is VERY old! There were pneumatic fire starters or "pump tinders" used in Borneo and Sumatra several millenniums ago. In 1816 patented Swiss inventor Samuel Jean Pauly (1766 - 1817) firearms with compressed air ignition. They shot cartridges loaded into brass cases with centerfire vent (also invented by Samuel J. Pauly). Original Pauly cartridges had the vent or priming hole filled with mercury fulminate or potassium chlorate priming material, but Pauly found those early materials too corrosive for his delicate breech-loader firearms.

"Diesel ignition" cylinder was small in size, but compressed air could blow away lot of the blackpowder fouling from bores of Pauly guns. (They were rifles, shotguns, pistols - and at least one small cannon). Inventions of Pauly were "too much too early innovations": Pauly passed away by starvation in London, England. Many owners of usual spring-piston air rifles have their guns wrecked by "boosting" the shots with ethyl-ether or butane/propane gasses from cigarette lighter. In 1960s were some Barracuda air rifles made in West-Germany. They had a tubular space on the side of air cylinder for installation of a small glass ampoule filled with ethyl-ether.

When the ampoule was once shattered, each cocking stroke of Barracuda sprayed some drops of ether mist into the air cylinder. Stroke of piston carried out a "Diesel ignition". Cylinder and piston had their construction robust enough to stand boosted shots, but I presume, the officials of Bundesrepublic Deutschland prevented soon manufacturement of Barracuda. Nobody has also told to me, why the project Daisy .22 VL was abortive..?! As you can see, all those functional caseless firearms before and since Volcanics were single-loaders. Demand of full- automatic fire and high chamber pressure is cause of unsolved (?) problems.

Propellant of the caseless G11 cartridges might be RDX (a high explosive, also known as Hexogen) mixed with some inert plastic "matrix", but there was a "NIPOLITE" powder developed for German 7.9 mm "verbesserte" ("improved") cartridges of aircraft machine guns during WW II. Composition of Nipolite was: 34.9 % by weight soluble nitro-cellulose, 64.7 % b.w. PETN (penta-erythrite tetra-nitrate) and 0.4 % Centralit as a deterrent.

PETN is a high explosive, white powder like potato starch, insoluble to water, odorless and tasteless, very stable and less sensitive to shock or friction than is RDX. If the caseless ammo shall sometimes become adopted, the compressed powder charge shall be presumably something of Nipolite stock.


1211 MM; PT



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