50 BMG Ammo Identification Chart

Discussion in 'Survival Articles' started by survivalmonkey, Aug 14, 2005.


  1. survivalmonkey

    survivalmonkey Monkey+++

    Ammunition for use in machine guns is issued in metallic link belts. Link belts are made of units of cartridges and links. Each link has two loops fitted around a single cartridge and one loop fitted around an adjacent cartridge. Each cartridge in a metallic link belt has two links attached to it, except the end cartridges.

    Cartridge links are made of steel which is processed to prevent rusting. They are manufactured and tested to assure satisfactory ammunition feeding and functioning under all service conditions. M2 and M9 links are manufactured with closed loops. When assembled with the cartridge in belts, the links fit on the cartridge shoulder. The tapered front loops of the links are positioned firmly on the cartridge shoulder to hold the cartridge in proper alignment for feeding into the weapon. The design required the cartridge to be extracted from the rear and dropped into position for moving into the chamber for firing. Weapons designed for the links require additional space in the rear of the receiver for retraction. M2 and M9 links are used with the M2 machine gun only.

    You may also be interested in this: Short Range Media Penetration by 50 BMG AP Rounds | Survival Monkey Forums

    or this book: The Ultimate Sniper, John Plaster, Amazon.com: The Ultimate Sniper: An Advanced Training Manual for Military and Police Snipers (9781581604948): John L. Plaster: Books

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Ball, High Pressure Test, M1

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    Used by all .50 Browning weapons. The cartridge is intended for use in proof testing weapons during manufacture, test, or repair. The cartridge is identified by a stannic-stained (silvered) cartridge case. Type Classification: STD - OTCM 36841

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Blank, M1

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    Used by the M2 machine gun (flexible only). The cartridge is used to simulate firing in training exercises. The cartridge is identified by the absence of a bullet and has crimped cartridge case mouth. Type Classification: CONT - OTCM 36841

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Incendiary, M1

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    Used by M2 and M85 machine guns. For incendiary effect, especially against aircraft.

    Upon impact with a hardened or armored target, the incendiary composition bursts into flame and will ignite any flammable material. Incendiary composition: 34 grains (2.2 gm) IM 11 The cartridge is identified by a blue bullet tip. Type Classification: OBS - MSR 11756003

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Tracer, M1

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    Used by M2 and M85 machine guns. The tracer is intended to permit visible observation of the bullet's in-flight path or trajectory to the point of impact. Limited to continental US for training purposes only.

    Trace range: 1,969 yards (1,800 m) Tracer: R256

    The cartridge is identified by a red bullet tip.

    Type Classification: OBS - MSR 11756003

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Blank, M1A1

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    Used by the M2 machine gun with the M19 Blank Ammunition Firing Attachment, the M85 machine gun with the M20 Blank Firing Attachment, and the M107 Long Range Sniper Rifle. The cartridge is used to simulate firing in training exercises.

    .50 Caliber Browning (12.7 x 99 mm) Ammunition (5 of 13)3/10/2005 4:09:19 PM

    The cartridge is identified by the absence of a bullet. The M1A1 differs from the M1 in that the M1A1 has a rosette crimp at the mouth.

    Type Classification: STD - MSR 02806015

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Ball, M2

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    Used by M2 and M85 machine guns. The cartridge is intended for use against personnel or unarmored targets. The cartridge is identified by a plain bullet. Type Classification: STD - OTCM 36841

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Ball, Armor Piercing, M2

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    Used by M2 and M85 machine guns. The cartridge is for use against light-armored or unarmored targets, concrete shelters, and similar bullet-resisting targets.

    Armor Penetration. 500 meters: 0.75 in (19 mm) 1,200 meters: 0.39 in (10 mm)

    The cartridge is identified by a black bullet tip.

    Type Classification: OBS - MSR 11756003

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Dummy, M2
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    Used by all .50 Browning weapons. The cartridge is used for practice in loading for simulated firing and for inspecting and testing the mechanism of the weapon.

    The cartridge is identified by three drilled holes in the cartridge case and the absence of a primer.

    Type Classification: STD - OTCM 36841

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Ball, Armor Piercing Incendiary, M8

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    Used by M2 and M85 machine guns, and the M107 Long Range Sniper Rifle. The cartridge combines the functions of the M2 armor piercing bullet and the incendiary bullet, and is used against flammable targets and light-armored or unarmored targets, concrete shelters, and similar bullet-resisting targets.

    Armor Penetration. 500 meters: 0.63 in (16 mm) 1,200 meters: 0.32 in (8 mm)

    Incendiary composition: 15 grains (0.97 gm) IM 11

    The cartridge is identified by an aluminum bullet tip.

    Type Classification: OBS - MSR 11756003

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Tracer, M10

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    Used by M2 and M85 machine guns. The tracer cartridge exhibits a visible trace from a point not greater than 100 yards (91 m) from the muzzle of the weapon to a point not less than

    .50 Caliber Browning (12.7 x 99 mm) Ammunition (7 of 13)3/10/2005 4:09:19 PM .50 Caliber Browning (12.7 x 99 mm) Ammunition

    1,600 yards (1,463 m) from the muzzle. Tracer: R256 The cartridge is identified by an orange bullet tip. Type Classification: STD - OTCM 37107

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Tracer, M17

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    Used by M2 and M85 machine guns, and the M107 Long Range Sniper Rifle. The cartridge tracer is intended to permit visible observation of the bullets in-flight path or trajectory to the point of impact.

    Trace range: 2,679 yards (2,450 m) Tracer: R256

    The cartridge is identified by a brown bullet tip.

    Type Classification: CON - MSR 11756003

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Armor Piercing Incendiary-Tracer, M20

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    Used by M2 and M85 machine guns, and the M107 Long Range Sniper Rifle. The cartridge combines the functions of the armor piercing and the incendiary bullet, and is used against flammable targets and light-armored or unarmored targets, concrete shelters, and similar bullet-resisting targets. This tracer is dim at near ranges, but increases to bright as it moves further from the gun.

    Armor Penetration. 500 meters: 0.83 in (21 mm) 1,200 meters: 0.43 in (11 mm)

    Incendiary composition: 27 grains (1.74 gm) IM 161 Trace range: 328 - 1,914 yards (300 - 1,750 m) Tracer: R256

    .50 Caliber Browning (12.7 x 99 mm) Ammunition (8 of 13)3/10/2005 4:09:19 PM

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    Used by M2 machine gun with the M3 Recoil Amplifier. The cartridge is intended for scaled range training purposes, where range restrictions limit or prohibit the use of one of the other types of live ammunition.

    Maximum range: 765 yards (700 m)

    The cartridge is identified by the blue bullet and case which are molded into one piece with high density polyethylene plastic.

    Type Classification: STD. Type Classification Date: 24-MAY-1983

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Tracer, Plastic Practice M860

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    Used by M2 machine gun with the M3 Recoil Amplifier. The cartridge tracer is intended for scaled range training to permit visible observation of the bullet's in-flight path or trajectory to the point of impact. The cartridge is intended for use with the M858 Plastic Practice Ball Cartridge.

    Maximum range: 765 yards (700 m) Trace range: 22 - 164 yards (20 - 150 m) Tracer: DAG9591254/4

    The cartridge is identified by a red bullet tip and the blue bullet and case which are molded into one piece with high density polyethylene plastic.

    Type Classification: STD. Type Classification Date: 24-MAY-1983

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Saboted Light Armor Penetrator (SLAP), M903
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    Used by M2HB machine gun. The SLAP is used in combat against current and future light armored targets and Armored Attack Helicopters (AAHs). The M903 offers the capability to defeat these targets at ranges two to three times that of currently available ammunition.

    Armor Penetration. 500 meters: 1.34 in (34 mm) 1,200 meters: 0.91 in (23 mm)

    Projectile diameter: 0.30 inches (7.7 mm)

    The cartridge consists of a heavy metal (tungsten) penetrator that is sabot-launched at a much higher velocity than standard rounds. The sabot, which is designed to break up at the muzzle to release the penetrator, must also survive the gun environment until launch. It is injection molded of special high strength plastic and is reinforced with an aluminum insert in the base section. The cartridge is identified by an amber sabot (Ultem 1000).

    Type Classification: STD. Type Classification Date: 31-MAR-1993. Unit cost: $8.87 (Fiscal Year 2005).

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    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Saboted Light Armor Penetrator-Tracer (SLAP-T), M962
    Used by M2HB machine gun. For use against light armor vehicles and aircraft with the additional tracer feature. This round is also for use in M1-series Abrams Tank gunnery training using a subcaliber insert.

    Projectile diameter: 0.30 inches (7.7 mm) Tracer: R543

    The Saboted Light Armor Penetrator with Tracer (SLAP-T), M962 cartridge consists of a tungsten alloy penetrator of the same mass as the Saboted Light Armor Penetrator (SLAP), M903. The sabot, which is designed to break up at the muzzle to release the penetrator, must also survive the gun environment until launch. It is injection molded of special high strength plastic and is reinforced with an aluminum insert in the base section. The tungsten alloy penetrator has a slot in the base to insure full spin-up before separation from the sabot at the muzzle. The penetrator base is cored out to accommodate a trace mix composition.

    The cartridge is identified by a red sabot (Ultem 1000).

    Type Classification: STD. Type Classification Date: 31-MAR-1993. Unit cost: $12.85 (Fiscal Year 2005).

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    AMMUNITION EFFECTS

    The .50 caliber round is optimized for penetration at long ranges (about 875 yards, or 800 meters). For hard targets, .50 caliber penetration is affected by obliquity and range.

    The .50 caliber round can penetrate all of the commonly found urban barriers except a sand- filled 55-gallon drum.

    Continued and concentrated machine gun fire can breach most typical urban walls. Such fire cannot breach thick reinforced concrete structures or dense natural stone walls. Internal walls, partitions, plaster, floors, ceilings, common office furniture, home appliances, and bedding can be easily penetrated by .50 caliber rounds.

    Number of rounds needed to penetrate a reinforced concrete wall at 25° obliquity.

    Penetration capabilities of a single .50 caliber M2 AP round fired from a 45-inch barrel.

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    You may also be interested in this: Short Range Media Penetration by 50 BMG AP Rounds | Survival Monkey Forums

    or this book: The Ultimate Sniper, John Plaster, Amazon.com: The Ultimate Sniper: An Advanced Training Manual for Military and Police Snipers (9781581604948): John L. Plaster: Books


    From wiki: .50 BMG - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The .50 Browning Machine Gun (.50 BMG) or 12.7×99mm NATO is a cartridge developed for the Browning .50 caliber machine gun in the late 1910s. Entering service officially in 1921, the round is based on a greatly scaled-up .30-06 cartridge.[citation needed] UnderSTANAG 4383, it is a standard cartridge for NATO forces as well as many non-NATO countries.[1] The cartridge itself has been made in many variants: multiple generations of regular ball, tracer, armor piercing, incendiary, and saboted sub-caliber rounds. The rounds intended for machine guns are linked using metallic links.

    The .50 BMG cartridge is also used in long-range target and sniper rifles, as well as other .50-caliber machine guns. The use in single-shot and semi-automatic rifles has resulted in many specialized match-grade rounds not used in .50-caliber machine guns. A McMillan Tac-50 .50 BMG sniper rifle was used by Canadian Army Corporal Rob Furlong of the PPCLI to achieve what was then the longest-range confirmed sniper kill in history, when he shot a Taliban combatant at 2,430 meters (2,657 yards) during the 2002 campaign in theAfghanistan War.[2] This record was surpassed in 2009 in Afghanistan by a British sniper with 2,475 meters (2,707 yards) though using a.338 Lapua Magnum (8.58×70 mm) rifle.[3][4]

    A former record for a confirmed long-distance kill was set by U.S. Marine sniper Carlos Hathcock in 1967, at a distance of 2,090 metres (2,286 yd);[5] Hathcock used the .50 BMG in an M2 Browning Machine Gun equipped with a telescopic sight. This weapon was used by other snipers, and eventually purpose-built sniper rifles were developed specifically for this round.

    DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) has contracted with Lockheed Martin to develop the EXACTO program, including .50-caliber bullets complete with microprocessors and steering vanes that allow the bullet to adjust its trajectory mid-flight to stay on target when the flight path has been altered by uncontrollable variables, as well as weapons that fire these rounds and monitor their flight. The weapon system is expected to be available in 2015.

    A wide variety of ammunition is available, and the availability of match grade ammunition has increased the usefulness of .50 caliber rifles by allowing more accurate fire than lower quality rounds.

    History
    John Browning had the idea for this round during World War I in response to a need for an anti-aircraft weapon,[citation needed] based on a scaled-up .30-06 Springfield design,[citation needed] used in a machine gun based on a scaled-up M1919/M1917 design that Browning had initially developed around 1900 (but which was not adopted by the U.S. military until 1917, hence the model designation). Armor-piercing incendiary tracer (APIT) rounds were especially effective against aircraft, and the AP rounds and API rounds were excellent for destroying concrete bunkers, structures, and lighter AFVs. The API and APIT rounds left a flash, report, and smoke on contact, useful in detecting strikes on enemy targets.[6]

    The development of the .50 BMG round is sometimes confused with the German 13.2 mm TuF, which was developed by Germany for ananti-tank rifle to combat British tanks during WWI; however, the development of the U.S. .50 caliber round was started before this later German project was completed or even known to the Allied countries. When word of the German anti-tank round spread, there was some debate as to whether it should be copied and used as a base for the new machine gun cartridge; after some analysis the German ammunition was ruled out, both because performance was inferior to the scaled-up .30-06 Springfield round and because it was a semi-rimmed cartridge, making it sub-optimal for an automatic weapon. The round's dimensions and ballistic traits are totally different. Instead, the M2HB Browning with its .50 caliber armor-piercing cartridges went on to function as an anti-aircraft and anti-vehicular machine gun, with a capability of completely perforating 0.875" (22.2 mm) of face-hardened armor steel plate at 100 yards (91 m), and 0.75" (19 mm) at 547 yards (500 m).[7]

    Decades later, the .50 BMG was chambered in high-powered rifles as well. The concept of a .50 caliber machine gun was not an invention of this era; this caliber (.50) had been used in Maxim machine guns and in a number of manual rapid fire guns such as the original Gatling, although these were much lower power cartridges.

    [​IMG]The .50 BMG cartridge.
    During World War II the .50 BMG was primarily used in the M2 Browning machine gun for anti-aircraft purposes. An upgraded variant of the M2 Browning machine gun used during World War II is still in use today. Since the mid-1950s, some armored personnel carriers and utility vehicles have been made to withstand 12.7 mm machine gun fire, thus making it a much less flexible weapon. It still has more penetrating power than lighter weapons such as general-purpose machine guns, though it is significantly heavier and more cumbersome to transport. Its range and accuracy, however, are superior to light machine guns when fixed on tripods, and it has not been replaced as the standard caliber for western vehicle mounted machine guns (Soviet and CIS armoured vehicles mount the 12.7mm DShK NSV, which is ballistically very similar to the .50 BMG, but14.5 mm KPV machine guns have significantly superior armor penetration compared to any 12.7 mm round[citation needed].

    The Barrett M82 .50 caliber rifle and later variants were born during the 1980s and have upgraded the anti-materiel power of the military sniper. A skilled sniper can effectively neutralize an infantry unit by eliminating several targets (soldiers or equipment) without revealing his precise location. The long range (1 mile+) between firing position and target allows time for the sniper to avoid enemy retribution by either changing positions repeatedly, or by safely retreating.

    Power
    A common method for understanding the actual power of a cartridge is by comparing muzzle energies. The .30-06 Springfield, the standard caliber for American soldiers in both World Wars and a popular caliber amongst American hunters, can produce muzzle energies between 2,000 and 3,000 foot-pounds of energy (between 3 and 4 kilojoules). The .50 BMG round can produce between 10,000 and 15,000 foot pounds (between 14 and 18 kilojoules), depending on its powder and bullet type, as well as the weapon it was fired from. Due to the high ballistic coefficient of the bullet, the .50 BMG's trajectory also suffers less "drift" from cross-winds than smaller and lighter calibers, making the .50 BMG a good choice for high-powered sniper rifles.

    Cartridge dimensions
    [​IMG]The 50 BMG 12.7 × 99 NATO cartridge has a capacity of 290 grains H2O (19 ml). The round is a scaled up version of the .30-06 Springfield but uses a case wall with a long taper to facilitate feeding and extraction in various weapons.

    The common rifling twist rate for this cartridge is 1 in 15 in (380 mm), with 8 lands and grooves. The primer type specified for this ammunition is Boxer primer that has a single centralized ignition point (US and NATO countries). However, some other countries produce the ammunition with Berdan primers that have two flash holes.

    The average chamber pressure in this round as listed in TM43-0001-27,[8] the U.S. Army Ammunition Data Sheets — Small Caliber Ammunition, not including plastic practice, short cased spotter, or proof/test loads, is 54,923 psi (378,680 kPa). The proof/test pressure is listed as 65,000 psi (450,000 kPa).

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    Left to right, rear: Mk211, Spotter, Silver tip (Armor Piercing Incendiary), Blue tip (Incendiary), Black tip (Armor Piercing), SLAP-T, SLAP, Tracer, and Ball. Front row are 5.56×45mm NATOand .500 S&W Magnum for size comparison

    Military cartridge types
    .50 BMG cartridges are also produced commercially with a plethora of different bullets and to a number of different specifications.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Tracer, M1
    Tracer for observing fire, signaling, target designation, and incendiary purposes. This bullet has a red tip.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Incendiary, M1
    This cartridge is used against unarmored, flammable targets. The incendiary bullet has a light blue tip.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Ball, M2
    This cartridge is used against personnel and unarmored targets. This bullet has an unpainted tip.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Armor-Piercing, M2
    This cartridge is used against lightly armored vehicles, protective shelters, and personnel, and can be identified by its black tip.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Armor-Piercing-Incendiary, M8
    This cartridge is used, in place of the armor-piercing round, against armored, flammable targets. The bullet has a silver tip.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Tracer, M10
    Tracer for observing fire, signaling, target designation, and incendiary purposes. Designed to be less intense than the M1 tracer, the M10 has an orange tip.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Tracer, M17
    Tracer for observing fire, signaling, target designation, and incendiary purposes. Can be fired from the M82/M107 series of rifles.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Armor-Piercing-Incendiary-Tracer, M20
    This cartridge is used, in place of the armor-piercing round, against armored, flammable targets, with a tracer element for observation purposes. This cartridge is effectively a variant of the M8 Armor-Piercing Incendiary with the added tracer element. Can be fired from the M82/M107 series of rifles. This bullet has a red tip with a ring of aluminum paint.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Tracer, Headlight, M21
    Tracer for use in observing fire during air-to-air combat. Designed to be more visible, the M21 is 3 times more brilliant than the M1 tracer.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Incendiary, M23
    This cartridge is used against unarmored, flammable targets. The tip of the bullet is painted blue with a light blue ring.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Ball, M33
    This cartridge is used against personnel and unarmored targets. Can be fired from the M82/M107 series of rifles.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Saboted Light Armor Penetrator, M903
    This cartridge has a 355 – 360 gr (23.00 – 23.33 g) heavy metal (tungsten) penetrator that is sabot-launched at a muzzle velocity of 4,000 ft/s (1,219 m/s). The 0.50 in (12.7 mm) diameter sabot is designed to separate after leaving the muzzle, releasing the 0.30 (7.7 mm) penetrator. It is injection molded of special high strength plastic and is reinforced with an aluminum insert in the base section. The cartridge is identified by an amber sabot (Ultem 1000). For use only in the M2 series of machine guns. This round can penetrate 19mm of steel armor at 1500 yards.[9]

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Saboted Light Armor Penetrator-Tracer, M962
    Like the M903, this is a Saboted Light Armor Penetrator (SLAP) round, with the only difference being that the M962 also has a tracer element for observing fire, target designation, and incendiary purposes. It uses red colored plastic sabot for identification. For use only in the M2 series of machine guns.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Ball, XM1022
    A long-range match cartridge specifically designed for long range work using the M107 rifle.
    Cartridge, Caliber .50, M1022 Long Range Sniper
    The .50 Caliber M1022 has an olive green bullet coating with no tip ID coloration. The projectile is of standard ball design. It is designed for long-range sniper training and tactical use against targets that do not require armor-piercing or incendiary effect. It exhibits superior long range accuracy and is trajectory matched to MK211 grade A. The M1022 is ideal for use in all .50 Caliber bolt-action and semi-automatic sniper platforms.[10] The bullet remains supersonic out to 1,500 m (1,640 yd) to 1,600 m (1,750 yd).[11]

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, High-Explosive Armor-Piercing-Incendiary (HEIAP), Mk 211 Mod 0
    A so-called "combined effects" cartridge, the Mk 211 Mod 0 High-Explosive-Incendiary-Armor-Piercing (HEIAP) cartridge contains a .30 caliber tungsten penetrator, zirconium powder, and Composition A explosive. It can be used in any .50 caliber weapon in US inventory with the exception of the M85 machine gun. Cartridge is identified by a green tip with a grey ring.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Armor Piercing Incendiary Dim Tracer (API-DT), Mk 257
    The .50 Caliber Mk 257 API-DT has a purple bullet tip. The bullet has a hardened steel core and incendiary tip. The .50 Caliber MK257 is used in machine guns M2, M3, and M85. Dim trace reduces the possibility of the weapon being located during night fire and is visible with night vision devices only.[10]

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Armor-Piercing (AP), Mk 263 Mod 2
    The .50 Caliber Mk 265 has a black tip. The bullet has a hardened steel core. It is used in machine guns M2, M3, and M85.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Armor-Piercing-Incendiary-Tracer (API-T), Mk 300 Mod 0
    As with the Mk 211 Mod 0, but with a tracer component. This cartridge likely can be used in any .50 caliber weapon in US inventory with the exception of the M85 machine gun, as with the Mk 211 Mod 0.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Armor-Piercing-Explosive-Incendiary (APEI), Mk 169 Mod 2
    This cartridge is used against hardened targets such as bunkers, for suppressive fire against lightly armored vehicles, and ground and aerial threat suppression. It is generally fired either from pilot-aimed aircraft-mounted guns or anti-aircraft platforms both produced by FN Herstal.[12] It is identified by a gray over yellow tip.[13] A tracer variant of it also exists.

    Cartridge, Caliber .50, Ball, Mk 323 Mod 0
    Created by the Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane Division, this cartridge uses M33 ball projectiles in a polymer case instead of brass. It has a clear polymer case, with a standard brass head fused at the bottom. The Mk 323 can be fired from M2HB/M2A1 machine guns and GAU-21/A aircraft guns with the same performance. It gives a 25 percent weight savings over brass-cased ammunition and allows 40 percent more ammunition to be carried for the same weight. The Mk 323's polymer casing will be applied to tracer, AP, API, and SLAP projectiles.[14][15]

    Links used for feeding machine guns
    Two distinct and non-compatible metallic links have been used for the .50 BMG cartridge, depending upon the machine gun which will be firing the cartridges. The M2 and M9 links, "pull-out" designs, are used in the Browning M2 and M3 machine guns. Pull-out cloth belts were also used at one time, but have been obsolete since 1945. The M15-series "push-through" links were used in the M85 machine gun. When the M85 was taken out of service, large stocks of ammunition linked with the M15 link remained in US military storage because of the ease with which linked ammunition can be de-linked and re-linked with different (i.e. in service) links.

    Legal issues
    The specified maximum diameter of an unfired .50 BMG bullet is 0.510-inch (13.0 mm); while this appears to be over the .50 inch (12.7 mm) maximum allowed for non-sporting Title In small arms under the U.S. National Firearms Act, the barrel of a .50 BMG rifle is only .50 inch (12.7 mm) across the rifling lands and slightly larger in the grooves. The oversized bullet is formed to the bore size upon firing, forming a tight seal and engaging the rifling, a mechanism which in firearms terms is known as engraving. Subject to political controversy due to the great power of the cartridge (it is the most powerful commonly available cartridge not considered a destructive device under the National Firearms Act), it remains popular among long-range shooters for its accuracy and external ballistics. While the .50 BMG round is able to deliver accurate shot placement (if match grade ammunition is used) at ranges over 1,000-yard (910 m), smaller caliber rifles produce better scores and tighter groups in 1,000-yard (910 m) competitions.[16]

    In response to legal action against the .50 BMG in the United States and Europe, an alternative chambering was developed. The .510 DTC Europ uses the same bullet, but has slightly different case dimensions. .510 DTC cases can be made by fire-forming .50 BMG cases in a .510 DTC chambered rifle. The new round has almost identical ballistics, but because of the different dimensions, rifles chambered for .50 BMG cannot fire the .510 DTC, and therefore rifles chambered for .510 DTC do not fall under many of the same legal prohibitions. Barrett offers a similar alternative, the .416 Barrett, which is based on a shortened .50 BMG case necked down to .416 caliber (10.3 mm).

    A 1999 Justice Department Office of Special Investigations briefing on .50 caliber rifle crime identified several instances of the .50 BMG being involved in criminal activities.[17] Most of the instances of criminal activity cited in the Office of Special Investigations briefing involved the illegal possession of a .50 BMG rifle. The briefing did not identify any instance of a .50 BMG rifle being used in the commission of a murder.

    Within the United Kingdom, it is legal to own a .50 BMG rifle with a section 1 Firearms Certificate.[18] Applications requesting firearms in this caliber are not subject to any extra scrutiny compared to smaller calibers.[19]

    There have been persistent reports of a belief among some members of the United States Armed Forces that the use of .50 BMG in a direct antipersonnel role is somehow prohibited by thelaws of war. This is incorrect and has been characterized as a myth; writing for the Marine Corps Gazette, Maj. Hays Parks states that "No treaty language exists (either generally or specifically) to support a limitation on [the use of .50 BMG] against personnel, and its widespread, longstanding use in this role suggests that such antipersonnel employment is the customary practice of nations." Parks theorizes that the myth originated in historical doctrine discouraging the use of the M8C spotting rifle—an integral .50-caliber aiming aid for the M40 recoilless rifle—in the antipersonnel role. This limitation was entirely tactical in nature, having been intended to help conceal the vulnerable M40 and its crew from the enemy before the main anti-tank gun could be fired, but some personnel may have erroneously assumed the existence of a legal limitation on the use of .50-caliber projectiles more generally.[20]

    Typical uses
    The primary military use of this round is in the Browning M2HB heavy machine gun.

    The U.S. Coast Guard uses .50 BMG rifles to disable outboard engines from armed helicopters during interdictions. Similarly, .50 BMG weapons have attracted attention from law enforcement agencies; they have been adopted by the New York City Police Department as well as the Pittsburgh Police. A .50 BMG round can effectively disable a vehicle when fired into the engine block. If it is necessary to breach barriers, a .50 BMG round will penetrate most commercial brick walls and concrete cinder blocks.

    In addition to long-range and anti-materiel sniping, the U.S. military uses .50 BMG weapons to detonate unexploded ordnance from a safe distance. The Raufoss Multipurpose round has sufficient terminal performance to disable most unarmored and lightly armored vehicles, making .50 BMG caliber weapons helpful in anti-insurgency operations.

    Some civilians use .50 caliber rifles for long-range target shooting: the US-based Fifty Caliber Shooters Association holds .50 BMG shooting matches.[21]

    Partial list of .50 BMG firearms
    Carbines
    • Barrett M82CQ (a carbine version of the M82A3)
    • Bushmaster BA50 carbine (22" barrel version of the BA50)
    Rifles
    • Accuracy International AS50
    • Accuracy International AW50
    • Accuracy International AX50
    • Anzio Iron Works Anzio-50
    • Armalite AR-50
    • Arms Tech Ltd. TTR-50[22]
    • Barrett M82/M107
    • Barrett M95
    • Barrett M99
    • Bluegrass Armory Viper[23]
    • Bohica MK III AR-15 Upper[24]*
    • Bushmaster BA50[25]
    • ČZW-127
    • Desert Tactical Arms HTI
    • DSR-50
    • East Ridge / State Arms Gun Co. Inc.[26]
    • EDM Arms Windrunner[27]
    • Gepard anti-materiel rifle
    • L.A.R. Manufacturing, Inc. Grizzly Big Boar
    • McMillan Tac-50
    • OM 50 Nemesis[28]
    • POLY-Technologies M99-II[29] and M99B-II[30]
    • PGM Hecate II
    • Pindad SPR-2 and Pindad SPR-3[31]
    • Ramo M600 and M650[32]
    • Robar RC-50
    • Safety Harbor Firearms SHF/R50[33]
    • Serbu Firearms BFG-50 (single-shot bolt-action) and BFG-50A (semi-automatic)
    • Spider Firearms Ferret 50
    • Steyr HS .50
    • TGR Co. LLC $1599 Noreen 50 BMG[34]
    • Ultralite50/Ligamec Corp.[35]
    • Vigilance Rifles Inc. M14 (semi-automatic)[36]
    • Vulcan Armament V50[37]
    • WKW Wilk
    • Zastava M93 Black Arrow
    • Zel Custom Manufacturing/Tactilite[35]
    Machine guns
    • CIS 50MG
    • GAU-19
    • M2 Browning machine gun
    • M85 machine gun
    • MAC-58 - did not enter production
    • Rolls-Royce Experimental Machine Gun - only built as prototype
    • WKM-B
    • XM312
    Pistols
    • Triple Action Thunder
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 29, 2015
  1. Bandit99
  2. DarkLight
  3. john316
  4. 10brokenpromises
  5. 10brokenpromises
  6. 10brokenpromises
  7. AxesAreBetter
  8. Motomom34
  9. Salted Weapon
  10. Salted Weapon
  11. Yard Dart
    [MEDIA]
    Thread by: Yard Dart, Jun 9, 2016, 0 replies, in forum: Firearms
  12. Ganado
  13. DarkLight
  14. john316
  15. AD1
  16. Yard Dart
  17. Bishop
  18. AxesAreBetter
  19. Legion489
  20. AD1
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