HELP Identify 50 BMG cartridge!


#1

Just purchased some of these but can not find any information.

I googled, searched allot of sites, searched this site but can not find any information.

-.50 BMG
-Brass Case
-Copper Jacket Bullet
-Bullet Not Magnetic at tip
-Bullet IS MAGNETIC Past tip all the way to the end (inside the brass) so probably AP?
-NO PAINT MARKS on bullet (like the silver or black on US/NATO AP)
-No color on bullet to brass seating/sealant area
-Brass primer
-Slight red color at primer to brass seating area
-Primer with three light crimp marks (original military purchase/loading)

HEADSTAMP
"13" on the top
"85" on the bottom
Nothing else

Only thing I can find at this site is “13” being associated with an unknown Cuban factory.

Since this is a 50 BMG I am hoping someone might know what this is and what kind of loading/bullet/primer/corrosive/etc?

I will probably pull one and dissect as it is unlikely I will shoot soon but I can get more if I act soon. I am hoping this is boxer primed/reload-able but still don’t look forward to depriming with these crimps.

Any info will be helpful.


#2

Although 13 has been used by the Cubans, your cartridge was made in South Africa. I don’t know enough about .50s to ID your loading, but it is definitely RSA manufacture, 1985.


#3

According to my references, the code “13” refers to South-African ball ammunition (as well as “19”). “22” refers to tracer.
Furthermore, you can find the headstamps “PMP”, “A”, “12,7” and stampless on PMP 12,7x99mm cartridges.
I’ve once seen a list of all South-African numbers with corresponding bullet types but I can’t find it any more… :-(


#4

This excellent article from our friend Will Reuter (RSA) may help you a bit:

saaaca.org/links/SIG/12_7_99/12.7x99.htm


#5

The Fuchs’ .50 CD has quite a few South African headstamps with 13. They have this exact headstamp and bullet description listed as ball.

Citation: .50 CAL BMG CARTRIDGES (12.7 x 99) - A LISTING OF KNOWN .50 CAL CARTRIDGES THEIR VARIATIONS, AND OTHER RELATED CARTRIDGES by RON C. FUCHS and RON J. FUCHS.


#6

Thanks everyone for your quick replies.

With your help pointing the way I did find more information and yes this does match, including the primer crimps and color of primer sealer but no bullet sealer …with the south african ball ammo mild steel core built per near NATO specs.

Only thing I could not find out for certain in writing if this was a berdan primed since my thoughts would be to get boxer primed stuff to save in case I like shooting this stuff I would be $1 per brass ahead of the game if I decided to reload.

I expect it is berdan primed due to all SA military stuff I have seen being Berdan, and I also have bought 223 and 7.62 SA battle packs and it seems they like berdan. I am also thinking that the low price offered to me for this stuff at $2.50 is coincidentally the price of US or commercial reloads that are reloadable less the value of the brass as that stuff seems to be going for $3.50 to $4 and now I am even seeing $5.

I will probably shoot some in a couple of weeks, as I was unsuccessful trying to pull the bullet with an impact bullet puller so won’t know for sure till then it is berdan.

I would not mind hearing from someone in the know to make certain earlier before this stuff is all sold. If it is boxer, which I doubt, I want to get all the rest he has as it would be a good price.

Anyways thanks everyone! Adding South African to the google did make this come up where as before just using the head stamp and 50 BMG for search terms was useless except it did lead me to this site. Looks like there are some very knowledgable folks here!

Take care everyone!


#7

The ammo you have is berdan primed. The 13 on the headstamp refers to the bullet type.They used to mark it R1M3,but later dropped the R and M leaving the 1 and 3.