7.5×54mm French

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7.5×54mm MAS mod. 1929
Type Rifle
Place of origin  France
Service history
In service 1929–1980
Used by France, Germany, Vietnam
Wars World War II, First Indochina War, Algerian War, Suez Crisis, Vietnam War
Production history
Designer MAS
Designed 1924
Variants Balle "C", Balle "D"
Parent case 7.5×57mm MAS mod. 1924
Case type Rimless, bottleneck
Bullet diameter 7.8 mm (0.31 in)
Neck diameter 8.6 mm (0.34 in)
Shoulder diameter 11.2 mm (0.44 in)
Base diameter 12.2 mm (0.48 in)
Rim diameter 12.2 mm (0.48 in)
Rim thickness 1.4 mm (0.055 in)
Case length 54 mm (2.1 in)
Overall length 78 mm (3.1 in)
Rifling twist 250 mm (10 inches)
Primer type Large rifle
Maximum pressure 280 MPa
Ballistic performance
Bullet weight/type Velocity Energy
9.0 g (139 gr) Balle "C" FMJ 823 m/s (2,700 ft/s) 3,038 J (2,241 ft·lbf)
9.7 g (150 gr) SP 850 m/s (2,800 ft/s) 3,550 J (2,620 ft·lbf)
11.7 g (181 gr) SP 790 m/s (2,600 ft/s) 3,650 J (2,690 ft·lbf)
Test barrel length: 574 mm (22.6 inch)
Source(s): SurplusRifle.com [1]/Cartridges of the World [2]

The 7.5×54mm French MAS or 7.5 French cartridge was developed by France as an update to the 7.5×57mm MAS mod. 1924 cartridge. It replaced the obsolete 8 mm Lebel round used during World War I. In terms of power it is comparable to the 7.62×51mm NATO/.308 Winchester round. The 7.5 French cartridge is somewhat similar in appearance to the slightly longer 7.5×55mm Swiss round but users should never try to interchange the two rounds.

History & General Information[edit]

By the end of World War I the French Army realized that it needed to update its once revolutionary, but now obsolete, 8 mm Lebel ammunition. Due to the demands of mass production of the 8mm Lebel round during World War I it was not able to do so until the war had ended in November 1918. Six years later, the 7.5×57mm MAS cartridge was introduced in 1924. However it was soon replaced in 1929 with the slightly shorter 7.5×54mm MAS 1924-M29 . Two bullet variations were tested for military use at the time, the 1924 C and 1924 D, the former being lighter than Balle 1924 D. The French Army chose to adopt the lighter Balle C ammunition for universal service in the MAS-36 and MAS-49 rifles as well as in the Mle 1924-29 machine rifle. The heavier Balle 1929 D featured a boat-tailed bullet and had limited specialized use . Common variations of the 7.5 X 54mm French military round are: armor piercing (Balle AP), tracers (Balle A), incendiary (Balle I), gallery practice and blank. The 7.5mm X 54 round is still classified in France as war material. The original French-made ammunition tends to be scarce in the United States and is often corrosive and always Berdan-primed. However, reloadable Boxer-primed 7.5 X 54mm cartridge cases can be produced by reforming 7.55×55mm Swiss brass with commercial case forming dies . More recently, the ammunition manufacturer Prvi Partizan has brought onto the U.S. market a freshly manufactured reloadable French MAS 7.5mm X 54 ammunition that is non-corrosive and meets all the specifications of the original round.

Weapons chambered for 7.5×54mm MAS[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Surplusrifle.com
  2. ^ Barnes, Frank C. (2006) [1965]. Skinner, Stan, ed. Cartridges of the World (11th Edition ed.). Iola, WI, USA: Gun Digest Books. pp. 353, 375. ISBN 0-89689-297-2.