The 7.62×51mm cartridges are NATO standard ammunition, used primarily in medium machine guns and sniper rifles in all branches of the U.S. military. The family of 7.62mm ammunition consists of ball, tracer, armor piercing and dummy cartridges.
The M59 Ball is used in the M60 and M219 machine guns, and the M14 rifle. The cartridge is intended for use against personnel and unarmored targets. It contains a soft steel core. It is identified by a plain bullet tip.
The M61 is used by M60 and M240 machine guns, and the M14 rifle. The cartridge is used in rifles and machine guns against personnel and light armored or unarmored targets, concrete shelters, and similar bullet-resisting targets. It is identified by a black bullet tip.
The M80 Ball is used by the M60 and M240 machine guns, and the M14 rifle for use against light materials and personnel, and for range training. The bullet consists of a gilding-metal steel jacket with a lead-antimony slug. The cartridge case is brass and the bullet is unpainted.
The M118 Special Ball is used by the M14 rifle, and the M21, M24, and M40A1 sniper rifles. The cartridge is intended and specifically prepared for use in high accuracy weapons. The bullet consists of a gilding metal jacket and a lead antimony slug. It is a boat-tailed bullet (rear of bullet is tapered). The tip of the bullet is not colored. The cartridge is identified by cartridge case head stampings with NATO design mark, manufacturer and year.