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What kind of bullet is this?

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What kind of bullet is this?

Old 19th Feb 2016, 22:39
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What kind of bullet is this?

Many years ago, my father, who was a groundworker, unearthed this bullet:

http://1drv.ms/1LxIngF

By no means am I an expert on ammunition, but I was able to deduce from the factory stamp that it was probably manufactured by Remington Arms in Connecticut during 1941, and is probably for a .50 BMG.

However, after searching high and low on Google, I've been unable to find an exact match. It also strikes me as odd that it has a solid case. I would have thought a spent round would be hollow? Maybe some kind of blank?

The firing pin looks to have struck, but like I say, I'm no expert.

Any ideas?
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Old 19th Feb 2016, 23:31
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It could be a "wad-cutter". Used for cardboard targets. wadcutter bullet - Bing images
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 00:37
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Similar to the horrible Sten Gun.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 00:54
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The headstamp "RA 1941 .50 CAL Z" indicates the case was produced by Remington Arms for an RAF contract to supply ammunition for those B17s used by the RAF.

As to why the case has been shortened and a wadcutter inserted over a fired primer ... no idea.

edit: The contract included live and dummy rounds. Dummies had no primer and the flash hole wasn't opened.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 01:05
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That doesn't look like a .50 BMG round.


'Wadcutter' style slug aside, it doesn't have the same tapered neck that the .50 BMG (above) has. However, there are a number of other .50 caliber rounds. Some accurate case measurements will help in the search. And I wouldn't draw any conclusions about the bullet or slug shoved in there. It appears that the round has been fired (dimple in primer) and then someone stuffed something in the shell. Either for decoration or the worst reloading job I've ever seen.

Last edited by EEngr; 20th Feb 2016 at 01:19. Reason: speling errer
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 01:15
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As I said, the case has been shortened. The head stamp is unarguably WWII Remington .50cal

edit: one thought.... .50cal cases were often used as message/keepsake cases... Have you thought to pull the plug, to see what's inside?
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 03:57
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Necked down cartridge, possibly for a specialist arm like a Desert Eagle or Automag or one of the big revolvers. Think the Automag uses a necked down Marlin case though. Haven't played with that stuff for years.

Doesn't look corroded enough to have been there 60 years.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 07:01
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If it's warm to the touch tiz probably depleted uranium.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 09:31
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If the round was real, there would no no projectile in it because it does appear to have been fired. Having said that, there appears to be no separate firing cap. I wonder if it's some sort of replica or novelty item.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 09:46
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Or indeed a dummy round for novices of the 50cal to prevent foot shooting,or to test the mechanism of those electric gattling guns without blasting everthing in sight,the projectile is short enough not to jam up the ejection mechanism when it's hoyed oot.
I used to have a few dummy 303 rounds about the place somewhere.

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Old 20th Feb 2016, 15:08
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Not sure about the bullet, but the first pic shows a Bic Cristal Biro, designed by Marcel Bich and manufactured from around 1950, under licence from the Argentinian Laszlo Biro.

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Old 20th Feb 2016, 15:54
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Not that it matters, but I believe that László József Bíró was Hungarian, and that the first patent for the Biro was filed in Paris. Also, Bich bought the patent so wasn't making pens under licence.

So as not to be accused of massive thread drift, I recall occupying many a dull moment on Harrier deployments in RAFG 'shooting' Bic pens from the Browning 9mm pistol. I presume it did no good to the firing pin mechanism.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 15:54
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Can't find the picture of me firing an Automag at Colchester. They used a .762 case with the neck cut off and came out circa 44 magnum sized. Factory magnum in the S&W was like a pea shooter compared to the loads we put in the Automag. Could just stop it hitting my forehead every time - with both hands.

Cue for bigger and bigger guns.


Funny to like these gun discussions, since I'm always saying now how I wished I'd concentrated on the piano instead of shooting. Such a different kind of hobby, but I enjoyed both. Daft really, since I can't bring myself to even shoot magpies and the like despite them being such a nuisance. I spent thousands making holes in paper.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 16:42
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I wonder if it is a .50 caliber wildcat based on the .50 caliber Browning machine gun round. There are a quite a few .50 caliber pistols in the USA. The .500 S&W magnum being one. I guess a re-loader used old WWII brass to make it and put on a wadcutter bullet, also common in the States.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 18:16
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Thanks for the replies all.

If this bullet has been reloaded at some point with a wadcutter, does this give rise to the possibility of it being live again? Tempted to prise the slug out but don't fancy blowing my hand off in the process.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 19:29
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I'm genuinely sorry for being such a pedant, but what you have here is not a 'bullet'.

A bullet is the thing that hits you, if you get shot.

So the thing you have here, is the thing you put in the gun.

Most of it, were it to be fired, would remain in the gun. The bit that might hit you? That's the bullet.

In the case of your pic, there's no bullet.

A better name for it, were it proper ammunition would be a 'round'. But that normally incorporates a bullet.
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 20:16
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Thanks for the clarification AtomKraft. Although it certainly looks like a wadcutter type slug/bullet (whatever it is) is stuffed into the propellant casing.

I wonder if it's possible for rounds to misfire? Perhaps the primer and propellant have fired, but the projectile has remained lodged in the casing?
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Old 20th Feb 2016, 20:20
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Looks a tad blunt and forshortened even for a wadcutter.
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Old 21st Feb 2016, 00:21
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If you are tempted to remove the projectile, (which I would to confirm it is inert), and find, (as you should), no powder, see if the primer has one or two flash holes. Two would suggest a "Berdan primer" which is generally military, while one would point to a sporting primer which may help in it's identity. A sporting type primer can be pushed out easily but the twin flash holes require a pneumatic arrangement if you don't wish to damage the brass.
Is it possible the round has been reversed in the case?
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Old 21st Feb 2016, 11:22
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If you want to make the round inert, pull the bullet, discard the powder and put a couple of drops of oil onto the primer. (Powder side)
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