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View Full Version : Ammo for SHTF days


Rand B. Wilson
08-18-2012, 10:44 AM
I like to set aside an extra box or fifty of ammo in case the SHTF (major earthquake, financial breakdown, comet strike, etc) - i'm wondering for those that do the same, do you keep the cheap target practice/reloaded stuff or quality HD type rounds?

emptybottle151
08-18-2012, 10:56 AM
Both. Any ammo is better than none, but try to invest in quality ammo and store it properly. Try SGammo they sell ammo cans as well.

http://www.sgammo.com/

ir0nclash86
08-18-2012, 11:10 AM
Both. For rifle I have my mags preloaded up with m855 and Hornady 556 TAP 75gr.
Id like to swap out the m855 for m193 but ill have to wait until the ammo prices come back down.

For handguns i only use hollow points. I keep them loaded witb 147 gr rds with those Winchester Ranger SXT rds.

QQQ
08-18-2012, 11:12 AM
More is better.
If it was good enough for the commies, it's good enough for me.

Then again, my go-to rifle is in 7.62X39. This probably doesn't apply to 556/223.

surplus-addict
08-18-2012, 11:31 AM
When I buy centerfire calibers, for prepping I like to stick with the cheapest brass cased ammo I can find, or if I'm using a proven design (aka Glock), I get cheap steel cased. 2K per firearm.

For RIMFIRE, I purchase the best simple because rimfire is finicky. I buy CCI mini-mags, and in bulk. 5,000 rounds is like $400, and that will last me a long time if I buy some Armscor .22 high velocity for $200 for 5,000 rounds. 10,000 rounds will last quite a few years if I space myself out.

alfred1222
08-18-2012, 12:11 PM
More is always better, I store cans of both

Kokopelli
08-18-2012, 12:28 PM
Both. Any ammo is better than none, but try to invest in quality ammo and store it properly. ...

Are there environmental issues to consider in storing ammo? Mine is in locked cases in my garage which gets pretty cold in winter and pretty hot in summer.

Thoughts?

CDFingers
08-18-2012, 12:35 PM
Ammo will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no ammo. (stolen from Freewheelin' Franklin, then abused)

CDFingers

ramathorn
08-18-2012, 12:46 PM
Get a mix of good and cheap ammo. If you ever need to barter ammo for other things, trade off the cheap stuff first.

fighterpilot562
08-18-2012, 12:48 PM
I store both, sometimes rotate it out.

DasBoost
08-18-2012, 12:53 PM
For me, I took 50rds of each of the various weights/types of .223/5.56 I wanted to shoot in my Mini and found which grouped the best and which shared similar POIs. Currently I have mags with 60gr TAP FPD, 62gr M855, and 55gr M193; for the M&P, I have both FMJ and PDX1; the Marlin has 40gr solid nose .22s; the K31 has 174gr SPs. :D

OP: Something is always better than nothing, just as having any type of ammo (other than blanks/tracers) is better than no ammo. Squirrel away what you can, whenever you can. Also, if worst comes to worst, maybe theres a CGer with some spare rounds for you. I always have extra for my guests. :)

Ripon83
08-18-2012, 1:07 PM
Quality,

If you are truly thinking "SHTF" then you really should put quality way over quantity because you are not talking about barter material for defensive material - you are talking about using your gun to protect your life / family.

In such a situation quantity just isn't going to work because if you ever had the need for volumes of ammo you probably won't be living long enough to use it.

Anyone ever think it through? 300,000,000 people in our country. They say 1% are preppers and if only 10% of those are in to guns like we are its 300,000. Now if everyone of those has just 1,000 rounds there is enough ammo just in that crowd alone to kill everyone in this country. That is 300,000 out of 80 million gun owners? There is FAR more ammo out there than people folks....FAR more.

emptybottle151
08-18-2012, 2:39 PM
Are there environmental issues to consider in storing ammo? Mine is in locked cases in my garage which gets pretty cold in winter and pretty hot in summer.

Thoughts?

Moister and oxygen your biggest enemies. Sealed ammo cans, spam cans, and other containers will work better than cardboard boxes sitting in the garage or shed.

Packy14
08-18-2012, 2:58 PM
I like to set aside an extra box or fifty of ammo in case the SHTF (major earthquake, financial breakdown, comet strike, etc) - i'm wondering for those that do the same, do you keep the cheap target practice/reloaded stuff or quality HD type rounds?

Just 50 rounds? My bug-out bags have at least 300 rounds of handgun and 300 rounds of rifle. I don't drive in LA without at least that much :) never know when an earthquake is gonna strand me on the wrong side of town (the wrong side of town is anywhere in LA after a major earthquake).

223556
08-18-2012, 3:04 PM
I do both also.
I have about 500 JHP (good stuff) and 500 FMJ (regular ammo/reloads) plus whatever I have in my range ammo can also.

voiceofreason
08-18-2012, 3:10 PM
Personally, I:

keep at least 1k of handgun ammo.

at least 200 rounds of buck and slug for shotgun

at least 1k of carbine/rifle ammo

for SHTF, I think FMJ is fine; I don't buy low quality ammo

-----

generally, I'd recommend at least:

200 rounds of handgun ammo per pistol
1,000+ rounds of .22 if you have at least 1 .22 pistol/rifle
200+ rounds of shotgun or rifle ammo per long gun

----

I run at least 250 rounds of any hollowpoint/defense ammo through the specific firearm it's to be used in before carrying/loading it for defense.

If you have a quality firearm with quality ammo, it's rare to get failures IME.


---


For SHTF, think more about having cash on hand, water supply, a way to make dirty water drinkable, food, generator, soap, toilet paper, a way to cook, etc.

a good, lightweight bag PER person that they can carry by themselves



I like these a LOT. They burn pretty much anything and are super easy to work. Use a coffee filter (super cheap in large packs) to filter out sediment and other crap from the dirty water first, then boil for 3 minutes; have a few cheapie lighters handy in hard containers:

http://www.kellykettleusa.com/kelly-kettles/aluminum-base-camp-large-kelly-kettler.html

clean drinkable water, endless fuel supply

hot water + ramen, dehydrated food, rice, beans, etc. = hot food

Safety1st
08-19-2012, 12:24 AM
Are there environmental issues to consider in storing ammo? Mine is in locked cases in my garage which gets pretty cold in winter and pretty hot in summer.

Thoughts?

Ammo cans with desiccant packets. Or use a plug-in rechargeable desiccant like "Eva-Dry." That should keep the moisture down in your locked cases.

CaliforniaLiberal
08-19-2012, 1:30 AM
Are there environmental issues to consider in storing ammo? Mine is in locked cases in my garage which gets pretty cold in winter and pretty hot in summer.

Thoughts?


General consensus is that ammo kept in a cool dry place will last many decades at least. Gun owners report shooting surplus ammo that is more than seventy-five years old with fewer than one bad round in a hundred.

Ammo kept in the garage in extremes of temperature might only last for a couple of decades.

Sealed ammo cans stacked in the back of a closet in your house might be a better choice if you want your ammo to store well for a long time.

neouser
08-19-2012, 8:58 AM
Quality,

If you are truly thinking "SHTF" then you really should put quality way over quantity because you are not talking about barter material for defensive material - you are talking about using your gun to protect your life / family.

In such a situation quantity just isn't going to work because if you ever had the need for volumes of ammo you probably won't be living long enough to use it.

Anyone ever think it through? 300,000,000 people in our country. They say 1% are preppers and if only 10% of those are in to guns like we are its 300,000. Now if everyone of those has just 1,000 rounds there is enough ammo just in that crowd alone to kill everyone in this country. That is 300,000 out of 80 million gun owners? There is FAR more ammo out there than people folks....FAR more.

It depends on how you define a real SHTF situation. For a long term collapse of infrastructure, longevity is key. It's not how much ammo you expend in one instance, it's how long you can make the ammo you have last over a period of time. Same thing goes with magazines and parts.

QQQ
08-19-2012, 10:54 AM
It depends on how you define a real SHTF situation. For a long term collapse of infrastructure, longevity is key. It's not how much ammo you expend in one instance, it's how long you can make the ammo you have last over a period of time. Same thing goes with magazines and parts.

Yup. I'd be willing to put up with 1 fail to fire per 1,000 rounds and have twice as much ammunition for the same price than to pay double to avoid the 1/1000 fail to fire. It's not that hard to rack the slide when you hear a click.

FalconLair
08-19-2012, 11:20 AM
Right now I dont keep my ammo long enough to worry about long term storage...between my son and me, we probably are burning about 2k rounds a month at the range...I just rotate out ammo boxes as they come in...I like to have at least 1k in reserve here at the house, I'll never forget the Rodney King riots and how the SHTF so fast and when that happens you never know where you might be, just ask Reginald Denny

Carbuncle
08-19-2012, 11:32 AM
Yep, I'd go with the highest quality Ammo. Better to have minimal risk of failure in a situation where you can't really count on being able to go to walmart or gun shop to pick up more ammo if most of your cheapy bulk ammo ends up being duds.
You also have to consider how dirty bulk ammo can be, just as you can't count on acquiring any more ammo, you can't count on getting any more cleaning/lubing supplies than what you already have on hand.
Like I said in the survival kit weapon thread, unless you are either trying to fulfill your Last Action Hero/Red Dawn fantasies in this situation, or a really bad shot, you really aren't going to need fire more than a few hundred rounds in your entire lifetime.
Most of the "nuisance" survivors are going to be wiped out pretty quickly if society really does go belly up. They'll either wipe each other out over territory or, I'd like to think, the more rationally minded of us will realize we really are on our own and band together to take them out if for nothing else than to make our lives safer.

Packy14
08-19-2012, 12:19 PM
well, I don't know about you guys, but i'm not rockin ball ammo for any real use, ball is great for paper targets and tennis balls, but if I'm using my gun to defend lives, its high quality JHP only, whether through my handguns or AR's. Too each his own I guess, cheap it up if you must.

QQQ
08-19-2012, 12:46 PM
Most of the "nuisance" survivors are going to be wiped out pretty quickly if society really does go belly up. They'll either wipe each other out over territory or, I'd like to think, the more rationally minded of us will realize we really are on our own and band together to take them out if for nothing else than to make our lives safer.

Then you're no better than them.

bombadillo
08-19-2012, 1:23 PM
I usually keep nato ball ammo whether its M193, .45acp ball, or 9mm ball in 124gr. I've been buying .308 as well, but its not actual NATO ammo.

Scratch705
08-19-2012, 1:52 PM
well, I don't know about you guys, but i'm not rockin ball ammo for any real use, ball is great for paper targets and tennis balls, but if I'm using my gun to defend lives, its high quality JHP only, whether through my handguns or AR's. Too each his own I guess, cheap it up if you must.

umm, the rifle JHP doesn't do what JHP does in handguns. unless you are referring to how JHP is really only done on match grade ammo for rifles.

as for ball being cheap, i guess the military is being cheap with our soliders' life? ball ammo is good for barrier penetration vs jhp.

bombadillo
08-19-2012, 3:47 PM
well, I don't know about you guys, but i'm not rockin ball ammo for any real use, ball is great for paper targets and tennis balls, but if I'm using my gun to defend lives, its high quality JHP only, whether through my handguns or AR's. Too each his own I guess, cheap it up if you must.


Why wouldn't you use PSP instead of JHP? PSP typically has more expansion and retains its weight better with quality bonded ammo. Either this or ballistic tipped stuff should be the best out there. Hunting ammo of most varieties are about the best for killing things if that is the main goal because thats what they were designed from ground up to do. Military ammo, some match JHP, and others are for accuracy, but not shock for the vitals as hunting ammo is.

Carbuncle
08-19-2012, 4:42 PM
Then you're no better than them.

How am I no better than them for not wanting a bunch of nutjobs raping and pillaging around the place I live?
Even in a situation where our government is permanently put out of commission I'd like to think some people could stay coherent enough to realize we need to police ourselves and not go all anarchistic.:shrug:

misterjake
08-19-2012, 6:19 PM
The simpler the gun (less springs, pins) the easier to fix and keep running.

An AR would be a mess, lots of pins, springs and gun is worthless if a buffer spring breaks or a gas ring....


I'd say a bolt action. Even if the mag spring were to break, you still could load 1 bullet at a time.

Panchira!
08-19-2012, 6:22 PM
I buy 4 put 3 aside and shoot one box. Got to scoop them up when prices dip. Sometimes it's just 1 box. It varies.

Packy14
08-19-2012, 6:31 PM
umm, the rifle JHP doesn't do what JHP does in handguns. unless you are referring to how JHP is really only done on match grade ammo for rifles.

as for ball being cheap, i guess the military is being cheap with our soliders' life? ball ammo is good for barrier penetration vs jhp.


Do you even know why the US military uses ball ammo? In 1907 the US did sign on to the Hague Convention IV of 1907. Article 23(e) states that it is forbidden to use arms and munitions that are calculated to cause unnecessary suffering. In 1985 the JAG determined it was OK to use expanding ammo on terrorists for snipers because the ammo was open tipped to increase accuracy not to cause suffering.

Soft point is good too, my home defense AR ammo is 64 grain soft-point so that it hopefully doesn't kill my neighbors if I have to shoot inside; my other SHTF AR ammo is 75 grain boat tail HP.

As far as barrier penetration, you either need penetrator ammo (steel core) or bonded ammo to really reliable penetrate most barriers and retain enough weight and energy to still do damage to your target. That said, if all I had was XM183, I'd use it, but its not the best ammo out there by any means..if it was, our special forces and many troops would not all be using heavier grain ammo currently.

I suggest you read up on some stuff by DocGK and other people who know what they are talking about when it comes to ammo.

neouser
08-19-2012, 7:32 PM
ReMost of the "nuisance" survivors are going to be wiped out pretty quickly if society really does go belly up. They'll either wipe each other out over territory or, I'd like to think, the more rationally minded of us will realize we really are on our own and band together to take them out if for nothing else than to make our lives safer.

What makes you believe that the bulk of your shooting will be done on other people. You should really check out some of the books by Ragnar Benson sometime.

As for ammo, I'm a big fan of military ball. There are instances where it comes in much more handy than a JHP or soft point.

Regarding hollowpoint ammunition, it's not banned by NATO or the Geneva Convention. It was actually addressed at the Hague Conference, of which the US did not join until 1907.

Carbuncle
08-19-2012, 7:50 PM
Re

What makes you believe that the bulk of your shooting will be done on other people. You should really check out some of the books by Ragnar Benson sometime.


I don't, I was trying to point out to other people that you aren't going to need to worry about "active" threats for long. So they don't need thousands upon thousands of rounds stockpiled, just a few hundred.

EvoXRiley
08-19-2012, 8:10 PM
in the SLIM chance you actually have to shoot someone. I doubt it would be at a distance, more of a home invasion situation. and lets face it you dont shoot once and expect them to be down.


i keep one spam can of 5.45 x 39 just to have and about 500 rounds of 45 reloads.


in a SHTF time, the last thing you want to do is go around with a gun or get into any type of gun fight, your life expectancy as you know is greatly reduced by doing so, no matter how much ammo you have.

JBaus
08-19-2012, 10:47 PM
150+mixed 12ga rds
1k .22lr rds
1k 7.62x39 rds

I just started and ideally would want 2-3x that amount.

taiwon
08-19-2012, 10:56 PM
ammo is ammo, shoot anything at any looters and they will go running or get killed if hit. only go shooting with cheap target stuff but stock casually with expensive stuff and make sure to continually stock up on the cheap stuff for both practice and shtf. i always buy a walmart box of 100 birdshot every time i go to walmart whether i need it or not. i dont care what anyone here thinks, birdshot WILL kill you or at the very least critically mess up your day. dont overlook cheap walmart birdshot, its just as important as anything.

wild_weasel
08-20-2012, 3:49 AM
This is why I like 230gr FMJ 45 ACP. Even in FMJ is is a proven stopper.