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Tracer Question
Discussion regarding the reloading of ammunition and tuning of loads for accuracy
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rrogacki
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Location: Pennsylvania

PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2007 2:58 pm    Post subject: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Every time a Cheaper Than Dirt catalog comes in the mail, my 12 year old hounds me about buying tracer rounds to bring to the range. They always seem way too expensive and I heard that they aren't too reliable either. Now they seem to be selling just the tracer bullets and I was thinking that I could reload them and not spend a fortune. A friend of mine said that you can't just use any powder because it is not hot enough to light up the tracer. Does anyone know if this is true. If it is, what commercial powder can I use, or is this just a really bad idea.

Thank you all.

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GroovyJack
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2007 3:34 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

I think your friend is wrong here , the tracer has a pyrotechnic chemical in the base that ignites when it leaves the barrel .. They use the same powder as the regular ammunition ..

I was a Gunner in the Navy for many years , and dealt with them quite a bit .. They are neat to watch , but , be careful , they will set the woods on fire ..

You will also find that the weight between individual bullets varies a fair bit .. They will not have the same POA as the loaded ammunition , they are used to give a real good idea of where you're sending the regular ammunition , to correct your aiming point .. We loaded every fifth round as a tracer ..

They will not hurt your barrel to the best of my knowledge ..

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Grumulkin
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2007 4:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

I've tried the Cheaper than Dirt tracer ammo. It's not particularly accurate and only a small percentage of the tracers ignite. Also, a lot of ranges prohibit tracer ammo.
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GroovyJack
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2007 4:17 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Maybe how they got it , maybe culls ..

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rrogacki
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 18, 2007 10:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Thank you both for the information. I don't know if I'm going to do this since I don't like my range being extra crispy.

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K.W.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2007 12:27 am    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Have had Canadin military trasers 30-06 cal. It was takin aboat 100 yards when start burning. I put those bullets Finnish 7,62x39. No problem.
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Dimitri
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 19, 2007 4:33 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Military Tracer Ammo (made in the USA) uses the fallowing powders:

30 Carbine:
M27 Tracer - 30 Carbine - WC 820

30-06 Springfield
M11 Tracer - MR 4895
M25 Tracer - WC 852

45 ACP
M26 Tracer - SR 7670

50 BMG
M1 Tracer - IMR 5010
M10 Tracer - IMR 5010
M17 Tracer - IMR 5010
M20 A/P Incendiary Tracer - IMR 5010
M860 Tracer Plastic Practice - 10B101

50 Spotter (for the special M8C Spotter rifle)
M48A1 Spotter Tracer - IMR 7383
M48A2 Spotter Tracer - IMR 7383

5.56x45mm NATO
M196 Tracer - WC 844 or IMR 8298M
M856 Tracer - WC 844

7.62x51mm NATO
M62 Tracer - WC 846
M62 Overhead Fire Mission Tracer - WC846
M276 Dim Tracer - WC 846

Got this from the TM 43-0001-27 "Army Ammunition Data Sheets Small Caliber Ammunition" dated April 1994.

Edit to add:
By the way you may want to check out www.wideners.com/itemv...78|281|296

5.56mm 55gr Tracer 70$ for 1,200 bullets. (just under 6 cents each)
30-06Spring 145gr Tracer 48$ for 1,200 bullets. (thats 4 cents each)
7.62x51mm 143gr Tracer 80$ for 1,200 bullets. (just over 6.5 cents each)

Smile

Dimitri

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Dawgdad
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 11:52 am    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Ther are two types of tracers, the ones that ignite as they leave the barrel and those which do not light up until about 150 -200 yards down range. (so they do not follow them back to your position...duh!)I was shooting the latter in my '03 at a 100 yard berm and thought I had a box of duds. Back em up to the long range and they glow just fine.... Laughing


BTW - Had a fellow trying some out on the 300 yard line. He picked his head up to make sure he could see the tracer when he shot and lowered the muzzle just a bit. He skipped the bullet off of the ground about 250 yards out and you could follow the trace of the ricochet for over a half mile as it cleared the berm..... Shocked . A valuable lesson learned by a couple of young shooters about making sure of your back stop and just how far an 06 will carry. Thank goodness there is nothing but corn for 3 miles behind that berm.

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Crackshot
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 4:16 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Dawgdad nailed it! I purchased some for my 50BMG and they did not ignite untill 200+ yards down range. They were very bright though, when they plowed into the back stop they smoldered for a few minutes. veery Cool! Very Happy

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Dimitri
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2007 3:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Crackshot,

Sorry for the off-topic talking but I was wondering. What type of 50cal do you have ?? Confused

Dimitri

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SwampFox
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 6:27 am    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Guys,
I did not see this caution in the posts so will add it to the thread. If you shoot any tracers at all, be very carefull. A tracer will set the world on fire. In a dry period a tracer in the woods, that has stopped moving but is still burning, is like dropping a flare into the brush.

I have de-linked many belts of MG ammo to remove the tracers in order to prevent fires on a military range. Most civilian ranges will not allow tracers due to the fire hazard. So before you fire a round down range, check your range regs and make very sure your backstop is not flamable.
Ed

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Handloader
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 5:57 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

I appreciate SwampFox's post and words of caution. Yet, to me, there is a larger issue present. Tracers have a legit military application that has no corollary to private useage. They are prohibited for hunting and disallowed at most rifle ranges. As has been pointed out, they have a slightly different point of impact.

What remains is our curiosity to see what happens when we fire them in our own rifle and to see the little glow as the distance extends. My opinion is that the disadvantages far outweigh the curiosity factor.

I am not for controlling access to tracers or AP. I simply fail to see the need for such ammo that has no application in private useage.
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Dimitri
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 6:00 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Handloader,

Tracers would make a kid interested in rifles at a young age with the "cool" lights. Wink

Dimitri

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Handloader
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 8:23 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Dimitri: and grenades might make even more of an impession? How about a backyard thermonuclear ant destroyer kit?! Kewl dude.
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Dimitri
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 29, 2007 2:21 pm    Post subject: Re: Tracer Question Reply with quote

Handloader,

Now don't get carried away! Laughing Just saying sometimes you need to keep young kids interested. Smile

Now I've never fired tracers, but I've had a urge to want to fire them from a young age. Might get myself some 308Win tracers when I get my M1A to shoot. Laughing

Dimitri

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