Hornady Vector, a safe tracer round

Hornady Vector…a 9mm “Tracer” with no phosphorus. Safe to shoot outdoors, even into full cans of gasoline (I have their video demonstrating this). There is no color tip on the bullets, nor special headstamp.

Hornady used a small zirconium wire inside the core of the bullet, lengthwise, instead of the base of the bullet being filled with tracer element. It has about a half of a tenth of a percent of the normal trace compound used in regular tracers.

Very interesting. Can anyone shoot tracer ammunition, or is it only aloud by Military & Law Enforcement? I think they are illegal in South Florida due to forrest fire concerns. Neat learning they seem to make ones that don’t ignite things :-)

I think it would depend on local or state laws. The wildfire concerns are very real for regular military tracers. Hornady made this so that it could be used both at indoor ranges and outdoors. It is a great firearms training aid, allowing both the student and instructor to visually see the results.

It sounds like a awesome invention!


It will be interesting to see how the Republic of California views this.

John M. or Gordo M., Are you there??


vectors are old school.

My old job gave them a try years ago…I have shot 100s IN 40S&W …they are VERY POOR tracers…they fail to light 50%-60% OF THE TIME !

Never shot Vectors, but burnt up quite a few rebuilt mil-rounds, along with a few “originals”. In Vector’s defense, any tracers I have ever fired were of a comparable failure rate. A few lots were OK, most were less than spectacular. Night fire made the failures even more noticible. An admittedly unscientific finding. Just something we all noticed and commented on. We rarely loaded the “combat load” of 4/1. Almost always a full mag or 100+ belt. 'twas fun, regardless.

PS The bulk of these were 7.62 and 5.56.
The most spectacular? The MAC10 made a stream. No gaps. Could write your name in the sky.

FWIW…With fresh M856 we had about 10% failure to light…old M856 were about 50/50.

Weird how tracers elements seem to die but primers and powder last for a long time.

I have myself fired rounds over 100 years old and while the mis-fire rate is high if stored badly…most fire just fine if stored well.

Tracers even if stored well still seem to die.

Here I am. All tracer ammunition other than 12 gauge shotgun target loads are illegal to possess in California without a California Destructive Device License, which is expensive, requires the same security for a few cartridges as it does for a dealer who has 200 machineguns, and is a potentially intrusive license.

By the way, I saw a video on Vector years ago, when it first came out, and while certainly less of a fire hazard than normal tracers, in the video, by shooting one into very dry grass, they started a fire with one. Am not commenting on whether they are good or bad - simply reporting.

In the video, which as I recall was not filmed by Hornady, they all seemed to trace well though. Again, only reporting, not personal commentary. I have never fired one in my life, for obvious reasons!