7.62x51 British Tracer Trials Revisited

Sectioned some more 7.62x51 Tracer Trials with head stamp K61/L5A1.
First picture is the original with my old camera(mostly NatoDaves) from a couple of years ago.
Second picture are my new sections with #9 and #14 added to the line up. (Missing #10 + #12 from other picture)
Also added to the end is a Tracer from Australia (MF/70/F3) that was once said to be the only one actually used out of the series.(?)
Was there ever a #22 Green with K61/L2A2 head stamp?
Thanks Kevin


Very nice section work, as always. Any chance of an identification key or basic information to go with each numbered round?



These tracers are from the UK degraded ogive tracer trials that took place in the early 60’s. As far as I can ascertain, there were 22 loadings. These and the other UK tracer loadings are described in an article on British experimental tracers which I’ll try to submit to Chris before the end of the year. I was hoping to finish it this summer, but as some of you may know, my wife has a major health issue which has had to take priority.

Kevin – nice sectioning and yes there is a green tip tracer headstamped K 61 (+) L2A2


Aussie Tracer was made for several year Lots…I have samples and Fired cases of MF70 F3, MF 73 F3…It seems they planned to make them every two-three years, but the cost was high and the reliability Poor, that the contracts were filled with US-Made Tracer (RA and LC) which was cheaper and more reliable. Other nations that supplied Tracer to Australia were FN (Belgium) and UK, and in the 1980s, IMI (Israel)(TZ Hs)…also AP as well.

Doc AV

Very nice selection!!!

The Australian F3 Tracer was developed to provide a longer trace, with the bullet having a similar trajectory to the L2A2 Ball round. There were a number of early experimentals green, red, purple, black or yellow tipped. Some were reported to have been loaded with US projectiles. Cases used were MF 61 and MF 62,
The final F3 apart from the red tip, is identified by the knurled band just above the cannelure and the fat ogive. First reported lot from Footscray was produced in 1967, using a ball case.
The F3 contains SR 390 tracer composition and SR 867 ignition compound with a nose core of lead and is sealed at the base with a brass disc. Total weight of the bullet is 8.83g. Propellant is 2.82g of AR 2201 propellant.

There were quite a few later experimentals, at least 16 with all sorts of identifying colours, which were destined to be called the F7, however these did not become a service store. These will be found in cases headstamped MF 81 F4 to MF 87 F4.


Doc Av is correct that Footscray had problems with the F3. It did , however, trace out to 1200 yards, and I think the only one to do so with the same trajectory as the ball round, when it was successful.

Production with the F3 headstamp took place in 1968, 69, 70,71,72 and 73.
During 1983 Footscray experimented with a boattailed tracer projectile, using MF 80 F4 cases. These did not give the desired results, so the Government ordered 2000 rounds of tracer from the following countries. West Germany, Greece, Israel, Singapore, Portugal, Austria and Korea. First tender was won by Israel and these will be found with the headstamp T Z 84 or 85. The second lot was purchased from Korea and will be found with the headstamp PSD 85.

Other experimentals will be found with bright blue primer annulus. These were loaded with the 30-06 M1 tracer projectile. Why?? I do not know.