.303 British SR 43 BVIIZ blue tip

Is it API tracer?

That is not an APIT, it is a standard British .303 Incendiary Mark VII.

SR indicates made at Royal Ordnance Factory Spennymoor, UK

43 the date

B is the code for Incendiary

VII is the mark number

Z indicates in used nitrocellulose flake propellant as opposed to the stnadard British cordite propellant, which resembles uncooked spaghetti sticks.

Falcon, I read somewhere that blue tip was meant for aircraft MG. Is that right? If so, what makes it different from regular incendiary?

The B Mark VII was the “regular” incendiary for all services by 1943, the principal land use being in armoured vehicle MGs.

In British service ammunition specifically intended for air service had been marked with the full four digit date and was made to closer tolerances. This was to ensure proper functioning in synchronised guns. In 1939 it was decided to manufacture all .303 ammunition to Air Service tolerances and in 1942 a directive was issued that from 1st January 1943 ammunition would only be marked with the last two digits of the date, even though it was Air service quality.

The blue tip is there to identify the Mark VII incendiary from its predecessor the Mark VI, and has nothing to do with Air Service.


Here’s a picture to go with the answer. The base plug and ball are lead. The disc and tube are steel. Upon impact the lead ball would set forward helping to disperse the filling.