Moving Powder and Primers OUT of the House


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Gary H
June 5, 2003, 04:19 AM
Has anyone heard of insurance companies refusing to pay for fire damage when reloading powders, or ammunition burn?

I'm thinking of building a 14' x 32' shed with 2/3 dedicated to my reloading and ammunition storage. Currently my reloading room takes up much of a 12' x 12' bedroom in my house. O.K. - 14 x 14 of the shed is for a new jacuzzi..hey it is California.

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Thirties
June 5, 2003, 10:58 AM
Gary, why are you wondering about this?

Just ask your insurance broker for some definitive answers.

What can anyone here tell you that would be nearly as accurate or appropriate in your case?

Steve Smith
June 5, 2003, 11:07 AM
I see that you're behind the fence so your laws may be different. When I started geting worried about this, I found out that following the NFPA's recommendations were satisfactory. That means for <50 lbs of powder, I could make a magazine box according to their recommendations and I would be a-ok. Should cost a lot less than a shed!

Gary H
June 5, 2003, 11:39 AM
Thirties:

I suspect that policies are rather uniform, so asking allows me to get some idea of what to say when I approach my agent. I really don't want to stir the hornet's nest.

Thirties
June 5, 2003, 11:42 AM
Gary, your broker is on your side. Stirring the hornet's nest would be asking your insurance company.

I was trying to warn you that what you get here may not apply to your case. If you are concerned, you should go to the logical source of accurate information: your written policy, and your insurance broker.

uglymofo
June 5, 2003, 11:44 AM
Don't ask your agent. Call a different agent in the state with the same company. and find yourself a couple of broken refrigerators. They make good storage bins.

Steve,

What's NFPA?

RON in PA
June 5, 2003, 12:52 PM
Won't comment on the insurance question, but if you put up a shed what about the storage environment for the powder and primers. I'm thinking of the heat and humidity, both of which will shorten the life of powder, primers and cartridges if on the high side.

Johnny Guest
June 5, 2003, 12:52 PM
Gary H, It sure appears that what members Thirties, Steve Smith & ugly mofo have written above is really worthy of note. We are all flattered that someone else might value our input on various topics, but we must be realistic . . . .

The situation in your home state may be quite different from New England, Texas, or elsewhere. Heck, it is sometimes different just across county lines or city limits, depending upon population, political climate, and multiple other factors.

I am a little dubious about members seeking legal and other advice from total strangers, in far different areas, and expecting it to apply. I can tell you what MY insurance agent says about MY company's policies, which informaiton may be entirely worthless to you. What would you do, tell your company's rep, "What do you mean, you won't pay my claim? Ol' Johnny Guest told me that HIS company says . . ." ???

As a Texas CHL instructor, I'm qualified to discuss many aspects of licensing and legal carry. I can make some logical deductions about the law in Oklahoma and Arkansas, but for a definitive answer, I'd need to do some research, or, better still, would refer quesitons to the licensing authorities in THOSE states.

As a career peace officer, I can discuss some points of the grass roots level application of criminal law, but, really, points about prosecution in court are shunted to the District Attorney's Office.

Being an administrative Lieutenant in the sheriff's office, I can field many questions about THIS SO's policies and procedures. Can I address queries concerning P&Ps at Cooke County, Illinois? Hardly.

The others, and I, are not trying to ignore your concerns, amigo - - Just trying to be realistic about providing any information from OUR situations which would be useful to you. :)

On another point altogether - - - you write, 14 x 14 of the shed is for a new jacuzzi..hey it is California. I'd hope the two rooms are well isolated by sealed walls and a tight, weather stripped, door. The humidity developed by the Jasuzzi won't do primers and unsealed powder in a neighboring room any good a-tall.:p

Best regards,
Johnny

Johnny Guest
June 5, 2003, 01:00 PM
Simultaneous posts - - -
Great minds think along the same lines, huh?:D

JPG

Steve Smith
June 5, 2003, 01:03 PM
National Fire Protection Agency. :)

Mike Irwin
June 5, 2003, 01:05 PM
"find yourself a couple of broken refrigerators. They make good storage bins."


One VERY important point needs to be made.

Under no circumstances should you store powder in an old refrigerator with a mechanical door lock!

Use ONLY fridges with the magnetic door seals!

There are still a number of old fridges floating around with the mechanical locks. In essence, these could become a bomb if the powder inside were to ignite as the door couldn't just pop open to vent the powder gas.

larryw
June 5, 2003, 03:08 PM
Hmmm, my homeowner's insurance company (State Farm) has no problems with primers/power here is sunny CA.

The fire dept will happily fine me if I exceed the legal max for residential storage of powder and primers (24#, 10K).

Certainly not a state issue, sounds like a company-specific issue.

Poodleshooter
June 5, 2003, 03:37 PM
The fire dept will happily fine me if I exceed the legal max for residential storage of powder and primers (24#, 10K).
It's VERY important to check you state and local regulations. I've found that most suburban and urban regulations START with the NFPA guidelines, and are usually more stringent.

uglymofo
June 5, 2003, 07:13 PM
"National Fire Protection Agency"..... Thanks for that.

Only broken refrigerators with "weather strip locks" should be used, andI haven't seen one of those old metal-handled latch-lock refrigerators in 30 years.

Nevertheless, Mike is right on about that "minor" distinction. A lock on a storage bin of any kind, for primers, powder, or ammo would be disasterous in a fire. As I understand it, ideally, the bin should insulate your reloading-related items from temperature fluctuations, but these containers should 'open' easily under expanding pressures without restriction.

Mike Irwin
June 6, 2003, 01:58 AM
"Only broken refrigerators with "weather strip locks" should be used, andI haven't seen one of those old metal-handled latch-lock refrigerators in 30 years."

You need to look around a little more...

Many of them, such as the 1955 GE in my parent's basement, are still perfectly servicable and keeping soda and beer cold. :)

I was at an antique shop a few weeks ago where they had an old Westinghouse for sale. Didn't work though.

Gary H
June 6, 2003, 11:46 AM
Thanks for all of your posts.

I must agree that getting legal advise from the Internet is questionable, but I simply asked if anyone had heard of such a problem arising.

Now, the idea of using an old refrigerator really sounds great. I have a perfectly good freezer sitting in another shed in my backyard. I use to use it for additional cold storage, but have had it disconnected for the last few years. I'm going to put my powders in the freezer. Great idea..

I wasn't aware of a 24 pound limit on powder in California.

Does anyone know where I can find this regulation?

Johnny Guest
June 6, 2003, 01:19 PM
Mike Irwin makes a good point about the hazards of confiningpowder in a fire.

Another point concerning automatically latching doors, and the reason mechanical lock were discontinued years ago, as to do with children playing and locking themselves (or playmates :D ) inside them. Of course, I'd HOPE that kids wouldn't be allowed unsupervised play in an area where powder and primers are stored . . . ;)

Johnny

Alan Smithiee
June 9, 2003, 02:50 AM
wasn't there some great flap a couple of years back with a insurance company canceling a guys policy because he set up a private range on his property and owned firearms? State Farm? All State? something like that...

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