5.56mm Blank

Can anybody tell me why this comparatively new 5.56mm blank pictured on the right is significantly shorter at 44.2mm when compared with the other M200 blanks pictured alongside which measure about 47 t0 48mm? Is it still an M200 Blank?

Are you sure it is a military blank? It may be a movie blank, or commercial blank for some other purpose, made out of a standard length case, rather than factory made from cases with longer necks than that of a case for a ball round.

Is the silver coloured blank steel or aluminium cased?

I don’t know whether this is military or not and I now strongly suspect you may be right. I can’t even remember where I got it from to try and establish it’s heritage.

It’s one of Frankford’s experiments using aluminium. I have a matching ball round to go with it.


Looks like it was made from a regular ball case. Note the lack of primer crimp, colored primer and tip seals plus the non-standard nickel plated primer. This cartridges says “reload” to me. By whom and for what purpose is the question…


How scarce is the aluminium case blank? I have never seen or heard of a US aluminium cased blank before.

That’s not an easy question to answer Falcon but it certainly is not a common cartridge - especially over here in the UK. If you can get a copy of David Hughes’ excellent book ‘The History & Development of the M16 Rifle and it’s Cartridge’ you will see that there were hundreds of variations of aluminium cased rounds trialled but they were just that - trialled but never produced in any great quantity. I suspect that this blank is probably one of the more commonly found of the aluminium cases and I’m sure you’ll find the odd specimen at Bisley eventually.

It wouldn’t be top of my list for a round to acquire, I just thought it was unusual, and had never heard of trials of Aluminium cases in the USA before.

Hi, Guys…I don’t know “jack” about .223 rounds…but could this be an early blank made by Remington, before the .223 was adopted as a military cartridge ??..I seem to recall having some of these loaded as ball rounds…same headstamp and primer, color, etc…

I think you have the wrong round Randy, the thread is the one on the right.

Thanks, Falcon…Once upon a time, I was in the military…and should know my right from my left !!! ??..I stand corrected…

The right hand blank, the LC82, with the nickeled primer, is definitely a “Movie” reload.

Standard Ball cases, star crimped, will feed in a lot of 5,56 Semi and Full Autos, including the entire M16 family and the Ruger Mini-14; They will NOT feed in Steyrs (which even have issues with full length blanks specifically made for them; they won’t feed (X)M200 sizes either.

WE use Military factory blanks when we can get them ( essential for Steyrs) but otherwiise we load our own 5,56, as the ball cases can be had by the Ton. Also because the usual M200 type blanks are woefully underpowered, and have little (or erratic) Flash. WE use M200s mostly for “silencer” fitted Guns on Blank fire (low flash and low sound)

Doc AV
AV Ballistics Film Ordnance Services

Thank you all for the input. This blank will now be homeless for Christmas as I only collect military ammo!


As I can’t bear the thought that this poor little blank round, will be homeless and unwanted over Christmas I’ll take him off you hands next time I see you :-)

Remember folks a round of ammunition is not just for Christmas

Glad to see the poor thing get such a good home Simon!

I will agree 100% with DocAv…the M200 is lame! I remember shooting them off, very weak, pop, pop…but they sure made a mess in our M16A1’s (Guard Unit guns…old!). Cleaning always sucked. Some weren’t even enough to cycle the action sometimes, depending on your BFA, you’d get short strokes…