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  • 8x57 IS

    In the beginning of WW II, Sweden were in a desperate need of weapons and ammunition. Some smaller amounts of weapons were imported from abroad, and then mainly from Germany. The ammunition is named 8 mm Tysk (lit 8 mm German) in Sweden and were imported during WWII to be used in the to Sweden imported rifle m/39, the German produced K98k rifle and the Kg/37, the BRNO ZB-26 produced by waffenverke Brunn, Prague. The German nomenclature for this cartridge is 7,92x57.

    All ammunition brought in were ball ammunition with s.S projectile, schweres Spitzgeschoß ("heavy pointed or spitzer bullet") with cases made in either brass or steel. The ammunition are of standard German specification, and no Swedish specified bottom stamps were produced for these purchases, and that was common practice for Swedens purchases from abroad at this time. The only exception were the 6,5x55 ammunition from Germany that actually received bottom stamps in the Swedish fashion.

    The exception from the s.S. ball ammunition only rule, is the ammunition for the air force. According to a inventory list of 1940 they had several types of projectiles stored.
    7,92 m/m Sk prt torpedkula (spitzer projectile)
    7,92 m/m Sk prt pbr (AP)
    7,92 m/m Sk prt sl grön (green tracer)
    7,92 m/m Sk prt sl röd (red tracer)

    In AmReg 1942 you can find the following specifications:
    Projectile weight: 12,8 gram
    Powder: "German"
    Powder weight: ca 2,7 gram
    Pressure brass case: 3200 atmosphere
    Pressure iron case: 3700 atmosphere
    Velocity v25: 735 m/s (Kg m/39)

    The first order for weapons and ammunition were placed against
    Ausfuhrgemeinschaft fur kriegsgerät G.mb.H. were Sweden bought 5.000 pieces of rifles k98k including bayonet, and also 3.000 pieces of Kg m/39 in the same caliber and 38.000.000 brass cased rounds, delivered in September 1940. Sweden payed RM 3.040.000 for the ammunition.

    8mm Sk ptr m/39 (brass cases) is packed as 1200 rounds (80 packages of 15 rounds) in a ammunition crate m/98 at a total weight of 39 kilos.

    This ammunition were all in boxes of 15 rounds of "Czech" type with a light green ettikett with the print in red. No attempts has been made to adjust to Swedish text or Swedish standards. There is at least two different labels, one in German and one in Czech.

    The second order were traded through Waffenverke Brunn, Prague of 25.000.000 iron cased rounds with a expected delivery in April to August 1942 for a value of RM 2.680.000. In the same time there were ordered and delivered 2.000 pieces of Kg m/39.As there can be found boxes manufactured well into 1943, I can make a easy conclusion that the deliveries met certain delays.

    8mm Sk ptr m/39 E (steel cased) is packed as 1500 rounds in 5 boxes containing 20 packs of 15 round boxes, all in a ammunition crate model "German" at a total weight of 45 kilos.

    The ammunition box labels for the second purchase is most interesting as they are printed probably in Germany, and they are printed in the Swedish language. All the letter "å" on the boxes looks a bit "after fabricated" as the circle on top is slightly out of line and of a strange size and form. The ammunition is packed in brown boxes of German type.

    The factory referred to on all the boxes from 1942 is always 32 or 33.
    Factory 32 is a shadow factory set up inside the Linköpings tändsticksfabrik area. They did for sure not produce any 8 mm m/39 ammunition, and I do not believe they repacked the ammunition locally either, else they would probably of used Swedish boxes and labels. Of you look at the content of the boxes you will find ammunition produced by (SB) Patr.-Zündh.-u. Metallw.fabrik AG, vorm. Sellier & Bellot, Vlasim

    The factory 33 is the (Z) Waffenverke Brunn, Prague, Czechoslovakia.

    According to Willem Van Eijk there are known of 4 lots from “SB” 1942 and one of 1943. Also 35 lots of “Z” 1942 and 7 of 1943.

    When checking my own collection of images of the boxes from the second order I can find the following factories, lots, and years of production, all marked for iron cased cartridges:
    AMF 32 1/42
    AMF 33 3/42
    AMF 33 14/42
    AMF 33 54/42
    AMF 33 55/42

    One interesting thing noted in Amregister of 1941 is:
    The cartridges can use the short abbreviation "8 mm Y-patroner" (8mm Y-cartridges), whereof the boxes and labels can be marked with a "8Y" label in a appropriate text size and color.
    It is also noted that this cartridges is for "Y-vapen", (Y- weapons), and in comparison the 8x63 caliber weapons is named "X-vapen", (X-weapons).

    I have never seen a box or label with the "8Y", and cannot really figure out what the "Y" or "X" might stand for.

    I have looked for a Swedish military contract production of 7,92x57 without success. A smaller production has run though, as my good friend Rude of Åtvidaberg have come across one brown pack of ammunition stamped:
    Kal. 7,92 m/m

    There is no mark on the box giving any production data or timing. The ammunition itself in the boxes is not possible to date, the cases is for standard hunting rifles with Norma's civilian production stamps. "-NORMA- 8X57 JS". My best guesses for the ammunition is as a smaller production sometimes after WWII for use for:

    1) Test and evaluation weapons brought in after WW II (German MG/42 as a example).
    2) Else it is just to have our imported WWII weapons as references in the further developments of our weapons portfolio.
    3) It might of been used for the development of the Hakim rifle for Egypt. It is a Swedish Ag m/42B redesigned in the calibre 7,92x57. Sweden delivered the tool for a local in country production, but I suppose the development were done in Sweden.

    AmReg of 1942
    Input from Willem Van Eijk
    Input from collector AMF30
    Tygdepatrementet order book of 1940-1942