The characteristics of the M16 family of ammunition are described in this paragraph.
Cartridge, 5.56-mm, Dummy, M199. (Used in both rifles.) The M199 dummy cartridge is used during dry fire and other training (see 3, Figure 2-17). This cartridge can be identified by the six grooves along the side of the case beginning about 1/2 inch from its head. It contains no propellant or primer. The primer well is open to prevent damage to the firing pin.
Cartridge, 5.56-mm, Blank, M200. (Used in the M16A1 or M16A2 rifle.) The M200 blank cartridge has no projectile. The case mouth is closed with a seven-petal rosette crimp and shows a violet tip (see 4, Figure 2-17). (See Appendix C for use of the blank firing attachment.). The original M200 blank cartridge had a white tip. Field use of this cartridge resulted in residue buildup, which caused several malfunctions. Only the violet-tipped M200 cartridge should be used.
Cartridge, 5.56-mm, Plastic Practice Ammunition, M862. (Used in the M16A1 and M16A2 rifles.) The M862 PPA is designed exclusively for training. It can be used in lieu of service ammunition on indoor ranges, and by units that have a limited range fan that does not allow the firing of service ammunition. It is used with the M2 training bolt.
Although PPA (see 7, Figure 2-17) closely replicates the trajectory and characteristics of service ammunition out to 25 meters, it should not be used to set the combat battlesight zero of weapons to fire service ammunition. The setting that is placed on the sights for a weapon firing PPA could be different for service ammunition.
If adequate range facilities are not available for sustainment (particularly Reserve Components), PPA can be used for any firing exercises of 25 meters or less. This includes the 25-meter scaled silhouette, 25-meter alternate qualification course, and quick-fire training. Units that have an indoor range with adequate ventilation or MOUT site could use PPA. (See Appendix C for use in training.)
Cartridge, 5.56-mm, Ball, M193. The M193 cartridge is a center-fire cartridge with a 55-grain, gilding-metal, jacketed, lead alloy core bullet. The primer and case are waterproof The M193 round is the standard cartridge for field use with the M16A1 rifle and has no identifying marks (see 1, Figure 2-17). This cartridge has a projectile weight of 55 grains and is 1.9 cm long, with a solid lead core.
Cartridge, 5.56-mm, Tracer, M196. (Used in the M16A1 rifle.) The M196 cartridge is identified by a red- or orange-painted tip (see 2, Figure 2-17). Its main uses are for observation of fire, incendiary effect, and signaling. Soldiers should avoid long-term use of 100-percent tracer rounds. This could cause deposits of incendiary material/chemical compounds that could cause damage to the barrel. Therefore, when tracer rounds are fired, they are mixed with ball ammunition in a ratio no greater than one-to-one with a preferred ratio of three or four ball rounds to one tracer round.
Cartridge, 5.56-mm, Ball, M855. The M855 cartridge has a 62-grain, gilding-metal, jacketed, lead alloy core bullet with a steel penetrator. The primer and case are waterproof. This is the NATO standard round for the M16A2 rifle (also used in the M249 SAW). It is identified by a green tip (see 5, Figure 2-17). This cartridge has a projectile weight of 62 grains and is 2.3 cm long, with a steel penetrator in the nose.
Cartridge, 5.56-mm, Tracer, M856. (Used in the M16A2 rifle.) The M856 tracer cartridge has similar characteristics as the M196 but slightly longer tracer burnout distance. This cartridge has a 63.7-grain bullet. The M856 does not have a steel penetrator. It is also identified by a red tip (orange when linked 4 and 1) (6, Figure 217).
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