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View Full Version : Ammo shelf life.


DesertRunner
01-03-2008, 10:19 AM
For the past six months,ive kept a glock 17 with three 10 rd mags loaded with black hills hollow point 9mms next to my bed.

When i take the glock shooting,i unload the Hp's and shoot Winchester White Box.

Then i load the HP's back into the magazine when i get home.

Now,i am not cheap and i am not broke either......

But when should i "recycle" ammo?

The money spent on new HP"s doesnt really matter but should i worry?

I personnaly dont think so but i am no ammo expert by any means.I just wanna know what you guys think.

apbrian112
01-03-2008, 10:28 AM
ammo has a long shelf life... especially modern ammo. you shouldn't have anything to worry about.

PLINK
01-03-2008, 10:31 AM
You probably do not have to worry about the ammo going bad (expire) but I think you should practice with the HD ammo from time to time. Also, if you chamber these rounds you should be looking for bullet set back.

My .02 cents.

guimus
01-03-2008, 10:41 AM
For ammo kept in magazines (rather than in a more appropriate container for true long-term storage), I'd cycle through it every 6 months to a year. Gets you practice with your HD ammo and makes sure that the ammo doesn't sit around too long exposed to the elements. That said, there is nothing keeping it from staying useful for many many years, even when stored under your bed in magazines, unless you happen to float your bed on top of salt water.

For many militaries, standard practice is to store non-corrosive ammo up to 30 years. Corrosive-primed ammo generally has no finite life.

1911su16b870
01-03-2008, 10:53 AM
FWIW take that mag that is in your HD gun and run it first when you go to the range. Then load your hard ball and do your target work. When you get home, clean up and load new HD ammo in that mag. Personally I run alot of HD ammo in my HD guns, and I expect 100% reliability.

Kruzr
01-03-2008, 11:47 AM
Last year while going through a foot locker at my mother's house, I came across two boxes of .22 that my dad bought for me in 1964. They were marked at $0.69 cents per box :). I shot them through my Mark II without a single one failing to fire on the first strike.

If the ammo stays dry and there are no signs of corrosion on the projectile or the casing, it should be fine.

CSACANNONEER
01-03-2008, 1:39 PM
A few months ago, while working at a range, I found a 20rnd box of 45LC that some MORON shot! They were original rounds in the original box. The date on the headstamp was 1913. I would have given him a brand new 50rnd box in trade! At least, I've got the box and empty brass!

metalhead357
01-03-2008, 1:40 PM
You probably do not have to worry about the ammo going bad (expire) but I think you should practice with the HD ammo from time to time. Also, if you chamber these rounds you should be looking for bullet set back.

My .02 cents.


+10000000 on that one

ar15barrels
01-03-2008, 2:38 PM
Ammo goes bad after 3 months.
Send it all to me for proper disposal. ;)

Joe Register
01-03-2008, 4:08 PM
I have been plinking with Turk 8mm made in the 1930s for the last three years with no problems. I have had lead nose ammo get crusty after a while. Also if you handle the ammo a lot it can tarnish and start to corrode.

hawk81
01-03-2008, 5:08 PM
Ammo lasts for as long as you will live, as long as it is kept dry.

retired
01-03-2008, 5:43 PM
I know I should have checked the WWII ammo given to me with the WWII Garand given to me about 14yrs. ago. I'd probably still have the rifle.

Stupid mistake on my part. Actually, I only needed to check the 9th round as the first 8 fired fine. The 9th and last one cracked the receiver, the stock and damaged the barrel. No more rifle.:(

ar15barrels
01-03-2008, 6:06 PM
I know I should have checked the WWII ammo given to me with the WWII Garand given to me about 14yrs. ago. I'd probably still have the rifle.

Stupid mistake on my part. Actually, I only needed to check the 9th round as the first 8 fired fine. The 9th and last one cracked the receiver, the stock and damaged the barrel. No more rifle.:(

More details please.
Was the 9th round an 8mm?

tankerman
01-03-2008, 6:46 PM
Shelf life is until I take it off the shelf and shoot it

FEDUPWBS
01-04-2008, 2:11 PM
It better last a longtime Its going to take awhile to shoot it. Hell I've got ammo stockpiled for guns I havent built yet.

retired
01-05-2008, 2:38 PM
More details please. Was the 9th round an 8mm?

ar15barrels, no it was the right round, I don't know why it did what it did. I didn't get hurt, but it ruined my weekend of shooting rifles since that was the only one I had 14yrs. ago.

More importantly, I lost a weapon that had a bit of history and had been given to me for free. I can't tell you anymore about it as too many years have passed; I don't even recall who the manufacturer was.

Basically, I screwed up; I should have looked at each round before using any, especially since they were from WWII and I didn't know anything about them.:(

Fjold
01-05-2008, 3:31 PM
I would be careful after about 100 years.

ar15barrels
01-05-2008, 4:49 PM
ar15barrels, no it was the right round, I don't know why it did what it did. I didn't get hurt, but it ruined my weekend of shooting rifles since that was the only one I had 14yrs. ago.

More importantly, I lost a weapon that had a bit of history and had been given to me for free. I can't tell you anymore about it as too many years have passed; I don't even recall who the manufacturer was.

Basically, I screwed up; I should have looked at each round before using any, especially since they were from WWII and I didn't know anything about them.:(

If the ammo was WWII ammo and this was 14 years ago, that ammo was only about 50 years old.
It certainly should not blow-up a gun.
Something else was up here.

DVSmith
01-05-2008, 4:59 PM
Ammo goes bad after 3 months.
Send it all to me for proper disposal. ;)
You guys just impress me more and more each day with how you are willing to go out of your way to help a fellow enthusiast! :notworthy:

hk-p2000
01-05-2008, 5:06 PM
where can you shoot hollow point ammo, what range is it here in L.A. county

DrjonesUSA
01-06-2008, 10:57 PM
For the past six months,ive kept a glock 17 with three 10 rd mags loaded with black hills hollow point 9mms next to my bed.

When i take the glock shooting,i unload the Hp's and shoot Winchester White Box.

Then i load the HP's back into the magazine when i get home.

Now,i am not cheap and i am not broke either......

But when should i "recycle" ammo?

The money spent on new HP"s doesnt really matter but should i worry?

I personnaly dont think so but i am no ammo expert by any means.I just wanna know what you guys think.


Well, the question you ask in your title is not what you should be asking.

In response to your question of "what is the shelf life of ammo", the response is that it can be stored virtually indefinitely as long as it is stored properly: cool and dry with no wild temperature/humidity swings.

Now as far as the question in your post, which is "how often should I change ammo that I swap in & out of my firearm" that is a whole different question.

I'd say that defensive ammo should be changed every 6 months or so, and about the same for carry ammo, UNLESS you frequently chamber and eject rounds, as bullet setback can occur, particularly with the .40 S&W.

I'm not too familiar with the 9mm round and how susceptible to setback it is, so you should either research it or keep an eye on your rounds.

Setback is when the bullet literally gets pushed back into the case. This can cause geometric increases in case pressure and lead to KB's, again, particularly with the .40, but it can happen to just about any round that is chambered & ejected enough.

How often do you shoot & cycle those rounds through the gun? Once a month? Once a week?

Army
01-07-2008, 12:00 AM
Much of the incindiery .50 ammo we have in-country, is 1943 & 44 stamped. No hiccups, and all bullets detonate all sparkley and pretty upon impact.

DrjonesUSA
01-07-2008, 10:20 AM
Much of the incindiery .50 ammo we have in-country, is 1943 & 44 stamped. No hiccups, and all bullets detonate all sparkley and pretty upon impact.


Yep, that's exactly what I had heard - thanks for confirming!

Stay safe!!!

retired
01-09-2008, 11:15 PM
If the ammo was WWII ammo and this was 14 years ago, that ammo was only about 50 years old.
It certainly should not blow-up a gun.
Something else was up here.

I'm not saying there wasn't ar15abarrels, but since the 8th casing ejected, I don't know what it would have been.

And to think, I could have had a possible 62+ year old Garand if it had not done that.:mad::( I have had an RV black water tank empty on me, among other things. so it really is not that surprising.:shrug:

ar15barrels
01-09-2008, 11:19 PM
I have had an RV black water tank empty on me, among other things. so it really is not that surprising.:shrug:

I used to have to empty RV waste tanks at my old job.
Damn I'm glad that I am not an RV service tech anymore....