Sabot Ammunition

Sabot ammunition was introduced during World War II in an armor-piercing anti-tank role and is still used for this purpose. This ammunition consisted of a dense core of tungsten carbide covered with a steel sheath and a bore-and-sleeve assembly (the sabot). The sabot converts the core of the projectile

Figure 10.7 9-mm cast bullet showing circular mark on base resulting from sprue.

to the same diameter as the gun barrel. The sabot is discarded as the projectile leaves the bore of the weapon.

The U.S. Army experimented with sabot-flechette rifle ammunition as well as a 5.56-mm cartridge loaded with a 4.32-mm bullet in a 5.56-mm sabot. Sabot shotgun slug ammunition that uses a plastic sheath to bring the diameter of the projectile up to the desired gauge is currently manufactured. It is discussed in detail in Chapter 8.

In late 1976, Remington introduced rifle ammunition loaded with a sabot round. This cartridge is sold under the trade name of Accelerator®. The round was originally introduced only in .30-06. Other calibers have appeared (.30-30 and .308). In these three calibers, a standard .30 caliber cartridge case of the designated caliber is loaded with a subcaliber .224 (5.56-mm), 55-gr., partial metal-jacketed soft-point bullet, loaded in a plastic sabot weighing 5.7 gr. and having six equally spaced slits down its side (Figure 10.8). The manufacturer

Figure 10.8 (A) .223 bullet and plastic sabot disassembled. (B) Bullet in sabot inserted in .30-caliber cartridge case. (From DiMaio, V.J.M. Wounds caused by centerfire rifles. Clin. Lab. Med. 3:257-271, 1983. With permission.)

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