The authority on pistol and rifle loading data since 1996.

Reloading The .50 BMG

Loads for .50 BMG:

(Note: These are near MAXIMUM loads, you should use 10% less to start.) (See
note on Powders below or read all about various
Powders.) Bullet diameter is
.510 (some are .511) and this is the Big Boy used in the Browning Machine Gun,
ground, aircraft, and sniper rifles that reach a LONG way out.

While there are loads below for the 50 BMG, reloading it requires a bit more
care than most other ammo reloading. Here is a link to a shooter that shows in
detail with good photos, steps he takes to prepare the cases and reload the

And I recommend you visit the 50 Caliber Shooters Association. Click the

(Note “V” – “Vihtavuori” powders)

647 grain Speer FMJ-BT
V-N170 201.1 gr. 2,629 fps (start)
V-N170 227.8 gr. 2,932 (Max)
V-24N41 213.8 gr. 2,688 (start)
V-24N41 227.2 gr. 2,915 (Max)
V-20N29 239.7 gr. 2,744 (start)
256.3 gr. V-20N29 3,024 (Max)
650 grain M-33
Hodgdon US 869 265 gr. 3,155 fps (Maximum)
655 grain ADI-FMJ
H-50BMG 248.0 gr. 3,029 FPS (Max)

(Start ~ 224 gr. of 50BMG)

700 grain Barnes SOLID
V-24N41 211.2 gr. 2,652 (start)
V-24N41 231.5 gr. 2,910 (Max)
V-20N29 235.6 gr. 2,687 (start)
V-20N29 256.3 gr. 2,978 (Max)
750 grain Hornady A-Max
Hodgdon US 869 185.0 gr. 2,387 (start)
Hodgdon US 869 215.0 gr. 2,725
Hodgdon US 869 250.0 gr. 2,944 (Max)
H-50BMG 233.0 gr. 2,800 (Max)
Hodgdon H-870 187.0 gr. 2,322 (start)
Hodgdon H-870 222.0 gr. 2,782 (MAX)
Accurate 8700 195.0 gr. 2,322
Accurate 8700 218.0 gr 2,700. (MAX)
V-N170 190.0 gr. 2,490 fps (start)
V-N170 215.8 gr. 2,763 (Max)
V-24N41 200.2 gr. 2,508 (start)
V-24N41 218.0 gr. 2,765 (Max)
V-20N29 225.2 gr. 2,556 (start)
V-20N29 246.4 gr. 2,829 (Max)

(Start ~ 210 gr. of 50BMG)

800 grain Bar Solid (Barnes)
H-US-869 250.0 gr. 2,895 (Max)
H-50BMG 225.0 gr. 2,725 (Max)
V-24N41 181.9 gr. 2,369 (start)
V-24N41 198.1 gr. 2,592 (Max)
V-20N29 219.1 gr. 2,557 (start)
V-20N29 245.0 gr . 2,788 (Max)


Alliant (formerly Hercules) Powders.
US869, H50BMG are products of Hodgdon Powders.
IMR (formerly DuPont) Powder Company (owned by Hodgdon).
Ramshot and Accurate Powder Company (Sub of Western Powders, Inc.)
Vihtavuori powders: For .50 BMG there are two special Vihtavuori reloading
powders available: 24N41 and 20N29. They are, like N100 series, single base
surface treated powders. Their burning rate is slower and grain size larger
than that of the N100 series rifle reloading powders.

References: Vihtavuori & Hodgdon web sites (2008), Accurate Arms Co. 1996
Reloading booklet – – Alliant Powder Co. Reloaders’ Guide (1995) – – Hodgdon’s
Basic Reloaders Manual (1996) – – Speer Reloading Manual, #12 – – Winchester
Reloading Components Manual, 14th edition – – Lyman Piston & Revolver
Reloading Handbook, 2nd edition. – – VihtaVuori Oy Company,reloading booklet
(1995)& Internet web site 2008 – – Numerous magazine articles on reloading
special calibers and personal loads where noted. Return to previous Page

MD Smith

MD Smith

MD Smith has had a storied career from his family broadcasting AM radio business, to his 36 year career in TV broadcasting. He is a published fiction and non-fiction writer, earned his pilots license in 1965, and is the original founder of Reload Ammo in 1996. His loads have been successfully tested and used by others for more than 25 years.

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