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50 BMG Color Code ?

Discussion in 'Rifle Country' started by ranger7, Dec 29, 2002.

  1. ranger7

    ranger7 Well-Known Member

    I'm a beginning collector of 50 BMG cartridges and would like to know what the color codes mean for the various projectiles. Besides normal curiosity, I've cut open some AP projectiles (black) to get the steel core out. It might ruin my day to attempt cutting open an incendiary or tracer by mistake.

    I've also noticed that the very tip of the AP steel core is covered by a layer of some soft grey metal. I was wondering what the metal is and its purpose.

  2. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    Black = AP
    Red/Orange = Tracer
    Blue = API Armor Piercing Incindiary

    This is one instance where blue doesn't designate a practice round. Only the tip is blue, unlike the plastic practice rounds where the entire bullet is blue.


  3. 50 Shooter

    50 Shooter member

    Follow the link, www.50caliber.net or you can go to www.biggerhammer.net for info on color codes. WARNING!!! DO NOT ATTEMPT TO CUT OPEN A RED&YELLOW TIP!!! This round was a spotter/tracer for the 106mm recoiless rifle and will more then likely explode in your face! I would use the same caution with any of the incendiary stuff, that would include the .50BMG Raufous.

    On the AP, the soft grey metal could be lead, depends on how soft your talking.
  4. ranger7

    ranger7 Well-Known Member

    50shooter (especially) and others, thanks for the replies. The bighammer.net info was exactly what I wanted.

    I was trying to be careful and only cut the standard AP (black tip) bullets open. (I sure hope they aren't marked wrong.) I thought the silver or aluminum color tipped rounds were a variation of ball, but now I find out they are AP-Incendiary. Glad I was careful not to try these.

    The soft metal at the tip of the AP core is called "point filler". It's lead with antimony.

    Thanks again.

  5. 50 Shooter

    50 Shooter member

    There was a guy on ebay selling a linked belt of .50 BMG of different flavors, try the search feature and type in "50 BMG" or "50 caliber". If you want a Raufous ($35 each) round, try www.serbu.com and give him a call, he had some before Knob Creek.

    If you have any other ???'s, e-mail me off line. Here's a pic of a Raufous cut away.

    Attached Files:

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