There are four types of 45 ammo. They are ball, blanks, dummy, and tracers. Each of these types of 45 ammo is made differently to serve a different purpose. The first type of 45 ammo is the ball cartridge. It was first introduced in the early 1900s. Colt and Winchester worked together to come up with a gun and ammunition for the military. They came up with 45 ACP (‘Automatic Colt Pistol’) ammo. (It was a gun and a cartridge.) This type of 45 ammo (and the gun) were not up to military standards. Many changes and improvements were made to this type of 45 ammo through the years. The gun was eventually replaced with a different type of gun, but this type of 45 ammo has survived. The cartridge to this type of 45 ammo is a metal jacket with an unpainted tip. The case is brass. The whole assembly is approximately 1.3′ long.
The next types of 45 ammo are blanks. They are cartridges that have gunpowder in them, but there is no actual bullet. When this type of 45 ammo is used there is a loud sound and a flash, but nothing comes out. The sound and flash are what make this type of 45 ammo different from a dummy cartridge. This type of 45 ammo is used when an actual bullet would not be safe. The most common uses for this type of 45 ammo are training purposes, starter pistols at races, action scenes in movies, and for military salutes at funerals. Although no bullet is actually shot, this type of 45 ammo cannot be considered 100% safe. Death and major injuries can still occur when blanks are shot close to a target.
The dummy cartridge is a completely inactive type of 45 ammo. These cartridges are used for training and to be sure that a gun is functioning correctly. There is no sound and no flash. That is what makes this type of 45 ammo different from the blanks. Nothing explosive happens when this type of 45 ammo is shot.
The final types of 45 ammo are tracers. These cartridges have pyrotechnics built in (or included). When the gun is fired, the pyrotechnics are ignited and they cause a trail behind the bullet so that it can be seen. This type of 45 ammo is used to help shooters aim more accurately. A drawback to using tracers is that any enemies will know where the shooter is located. The first of this type of 45 ammo was developed in the United Kingdom. There are three types of tracers for this 45 ammo. First is the bright tracer. It is the most common. The ignition is immediate and can be seen until the bullet hits its target. The second kind of tracers for this type of 45 ammo is subdued. The tracer doesn’t start shining brightly until it is about 100 yards or so away from the shooter. This helps to hide the location of the shooter who is using this type of 45 ammo. The final kind of tracer is dim. It has a trail that can only be seen using ‘night vision’ apparatuses.
These are the four types of 45 ammo. Tracers, blanks, ball, and dummy cartridges are all used for different purposes. Some are for being able to watch the bullet to the target. Others are for training and acting.