Some questions about .50 BMG (12.7x99) with lots of pictures

  1. What is the significance of the copper wash finish on this brass FNB 07 case, and is the primer crimp style significant? Compare with a plain brass FNB 08 case. I was told by the vendor the copper wash is a proof cartridge, is this correct?

  2. These two Kynoch L11A2 spotting round cases were loaded as star crimped blanks. Were they loaded using reject cases or are they reload’s using spent L11A2 cases, and does the heavy triangular primer crimp have any significance in identifying who loaded them? Compare with normal spent L11A2 cases.

  3. Who made this case? I assume it is 1984, and 13 is a factory code?

  4. What years have been produced of CBC (+) L8A1 Ball and L9A1 Tracer ? Were any produced earlier than 2007, or later than 2010?
    (I’m looking for an 09 L8A1 spent case if someone in UK has one to spare/swap, and 11’s, 12’s and pre-07, if they exist.)

The copper washed FN case is a proof as you suspected. The heavy primer crimp is to prevent “caps out” with the increased pressure of the proof round.

I am sure that the L11A2 headstamped blanks are reloads, probably for film use. They are not Kynoch loaded from reject cases.

The “84 13” headstamped case is South African made in 1984. The “13” represents “R1M3” or the third modification of the R1M1 ball round.

I think that 2007 was the first year of British contract CBC ball and tracer. I have 2008 only, as I do not collect dates and I have not seen any dated in the last year or so.


Thank you TonyE for your prompt and informative answers.

Quote: “R1M3” or the third modification of the R1M1 ball round.

Just for the sake of discussion–I haven’t posted anything all day–would not R1M3 mean the SECOND modification (third total version) of the original R1M1 cartridge? The R1M1 would be modified once to R1M2 then again–second modification–to R1M3.
IF the original ball round was an “R1” then we would have three modifications–to R1M1, then to R1M2 and finally R1M3, but still only two modifications of the R1M1…

I may have to totally rename my old Triumph Spitfire Mark 4…


I would add that the cartridge is manufactured in 1984 by Pretoria Metal Pressings’s Pty. Ltd., (PMP) in South Africa.


OK, OK. It is the third version, not the third modification.