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Old 03-16-2005, 09:03 AM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Ammo Question

An older friend gave me a linked belt with about a hundred rounds of .30cal. They all have a reddish-orange tip. The head stamp is
T W 4 3. Anyone know what kind of round this is and if it is safe to shoot in my Garand? Thanks.
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Old 03-16-2005, 09:26 AM   #2
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Those are tracer rounds. I think they are safe, but can heat up your barrel if you shoot them rapid fire. Ive never fired them, but i want to buy some just for kicks
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Old 03-16-2005, 09:31 AM   #3
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They will also have corrosive primers. Be very thorough when you clean your rifle. Also be very careful where you shoot these, they can start fires. There is no federal law against the possesion of tracer ammunition that I am aware of, but some states outlaw it, and some even make it a felony.
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Old 03-16-2005, 10:15 AM   #4
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That was my first thought, but would they have linked that many tracers together in a row? I fired one Saturday. It was a bright sunny day and I didnt see it ignite. I am hoping that they are tracers. I would like to shoot a few of them.
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Old 03-16-2005, 10:37 AM   #5
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Normally tracers are every 5th round. I have never seen them linked together one right after another. It makes it too easy for the enemy to pinpoint your location with a steady stream of tracers going downrange.
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Old 03-16-2005, 10:46 AM   #6
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TW 43 = Twin Cities Ordnance Plant, Minneapolis, MN, 1943

At what distance did you fire the ammo? Many tracers will not ignite for a short period of time after being fired to reduce the chances of being spotted.

What is more likely is that the tracer composition has degraded to the point that it no longer burns - after all, this is 62-year old ammo

Most tracers on belted ammo are mixed in a ratio of one tracer for every three or four ball rounds, so your belt of all-tracer ammo was probably not factory-assembled.
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Old 03-16-2005, 11:21 AM   #7
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They do make belts of all's just not a common thing. Also lots of belt were loaded at the "unit" level with a belt loading machine.

It's also likely that it's M1 Tracer ammo with the tracer compound not sealed in the base of the bullet and it's 99% sure that almost none of them will light.

If in good shape they would probably be better put to use as a display.
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Old 03-16-2005, 11:44 AM   #8
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Thanks guys! I dont want to shoot them all, just a few to watch the tracer rounds. I think that I will try a couple more to see if they will ignite.
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