Cost of primers and powder


Steve H
March 15, 2008, 08:26 PM
Does the cost of shipping hazardous materials stop you from buying primers and powder thru the internet, do you find the bottom line to be less if you buy at a local store?

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March 15, 2008, 08:29 PM

I still get primers from a guy at the gun shows around here. I would have to buy 10K instead of the 4 to 6K I usually get from him to even out and I would rather buy from him. If he has what I want as far as powder I will get it from him as well. I can get powder about the same over the internet, but have to buy at least 4 pounds to spread out the haz mat fee.

March 15, 2008, 09:23 PM
If you only need a few of something, the local store is THE way to go.

However, if you are a volume kind of person, the Internet works wonders. Example: 1lb fffg black powder locally=$17.50 (last time I bought some...last year). Just had a box of black delivered from Graffs @ $12.70 lb. Substantial savings buying in bulk online for sure.

March 15, 2008, 09:28 PM
I get mine local, the Hazmat fees are too high.

March 15, 2008, 09:39 PM
local gun shops or gun shows only.

March 15, 2008, 09:41 PM
It is more than just the Haz-Mat Fee that keeps me from buying powder and primers via the internet. Let us keep that "Shipping and Handling" charge in mind as well. I can usually find primers within $1 or so of the "net Pricing" at local outlets. Same with powder. Add $20 for Haz-Mat to the $10-15 S&H that the Internet Dealer charges and the Local Dealer's prices are very close. The way I see it is that $20 is being added to my order for no appreciable benefit to me.

Don't hesitate to buy bullets over the net though as my favorite supplier (Montana Gold) pays the shipping. Sure makes the mailman unhappy though.

March 15, 2008, 10:18 PM
Unless the price is really good and I'm ready to buy a large quantity, the HazMat shipping fee kills the benefits of online shopping. I usually find primers and powder at local gun shows for about the same price as on-line, and sales tax is way less than HazMAt and shipping costs.

Bullets I usually get on line as the gun show guys I was buying from no longer are there :(


March 15, 2008, 10:50 PM
The above pretty much covered it. Unless buying in large volume, or no local source, the shipping & Hazmat fees make it not worth buying online.

March 15, 2008, 11:20 PM
Lasy year I made a big order with Powder Valley ( I don't remember exactly how much I ordered but I think it was 10,000 Primers and ~10lb/12lb of powders. With an order like that of 20 plus pieces that adds less than a Dollar to each item. The $20 hazmat fee doesn't hurt with an order of that size. That was the only time I ordered powder and primer online though. Everything after that has been local shops and shows.

March 15, 2008, 11:24 PM
I stockpile this stuff to last me into tight times like today.

Last time I purchased primers 1000 primers cost about 10 bucks.

XD-40 Shooter
March 16, 2008, 12:19 AM
Gun show's is where I buy, winchester small pistol primers are $22.95/1000 and plated 40 S&W bullets are $100/1000. I can't come close to that on the internet, especially with the hazmat on primers.

March 16, 2008, 12:25 AM
I buy both local and mail order. When I need a pound or two of powder or a one box of bullets I buy local. If I need a bunch of powder and primers I buy from Powder Valley. When I order several hundred bullets I get them from Shooters Pro Shop.

March 16, 2008, 12:37 AM
I buy local....Unfortunately I don't(the wife won't let me) shoot enough to require Hi volume buying. Trying to talk her into stockpiling bullets and brass however cuz of these prices lately

evan price
March 16, 2008, 01:52 AM
I buy online, usually from Powder Valley, $90/5K Wolf primers is the best deal out there today.

As far as hazmat & shipping goes, group buys, baby. Team up with the local reloaders and stock your selves up. If you get 50,000 primers in one order that's only pennies per sleeve in hazmat. Add in a few 8# kegs of powder and it's practically a nonissue.

March 16, 2008, 01:58 AM
cost of fed match primers at powder valley are around 30/k. at carters here in the Houston area they are 37/k. If you order enough of them with some powder you can easily make up the diff in haz mat cost and shipping. shipping is just like the tax anyways. the more you buy the less the cost on the shipping anyways. I just got 58lbs of primers and powder shipped to me for 19 dollars and that was with insurance. The cost of the order was 800 dollars. tax on that here would have been in excess of 64 dollars. buy getting it online and paying for the hazmat and shipping, I still saved over the tax I would have had to pay. that does not ever include the savings on the products. 8lbs of varget/benchmark from powder valley was 116.75. The same from Carters which is one of the only places here in Houston that I know to get it from was 21/lb. they did not sell it in 8lb jugs. When I asked them to order it for me it was 150 dollars for the 8lb jug plus they wanted me to pay the haz mat on it also. That is a rediculous price and I will not buy much from them in the future. RG

March 16, 2008, 03:27 AM
I use to buy local until Varget ran me $23 and Accurate Arms products were over $20 per pound :rolleyes:

Now I save my pennies and order from Powder Valley. It really doesn't take much of an order to get my savings back. I also get the benefit of a great selection and they almost always have my primers. They are a first class operation to say the least. Great Service & Great Prices.

If I need a pistol powder I will buy a pound locally if really needed. However, bulk loading of rifle calibers mandates buying the 8 pounders to save money. Those are not really available near me. Factor in a 20 mile drive each way and the cost for gas must also be considered.

All this talk of reloading supplies makes me realize I need to take an inventory.

March 16, 2008, 07:50 AM
The hazmat fee is $20. I find the "locals" charge somewhere between $8 and $10 more than on-line retailers for a pound of powder. The gun shows are $5 to $6 more. There is also a price differential in primers, but it doesn't seem to be as grea maybe $4 to $5 per thousand. The math is simple. I try to keep adequate stocks of the components I use on hand so that I won't run out and have to pay for the local merchant's next vacation. I also have several buddies who reload and we all have been known to borrow a pound of this or some quantity of primers. Typically, any combination of 4 items, be it powder or a brick of 1000 primers covers the Hazmat fee. Anything above 4 = savings.

Rollis R. Karvellis
March 16, 2008, 08:12 AM
The locale guy here is a good freind, so I try to send as much bussness to as I can, but when a good deal comes up I, jump.

XD-40 Shooter
March 16, 2008, 03:12 PM
I buy 8lb keg's of Unique for $104 at Sportsmans Warehouse, out the door.

March 16, 2008, 03:56 PM
Its about 108 out the door at the SW in Austin. I buy here because the SW sells winchester primers for about 25 per k and mag tech for about 20. Their 1lb for alliant pistols powders in about 16 plus tax. Their close enough to powder valley and such I would have to buy a whole lot to off set the price. I am going to have to order some black powder sometime soon. I will have to see if there is anyone is Austin using it and get together on a group buy. Either that or I will just be sitting on 25 lbs of black powder.

March 16, 2008, 06:10 PM
I buy powder and primers on line. It is a lot cheaper for me that way. Primers local for me are in the high twenties per thousand and after hazmat and shipping I can get them for $18 to $19 per thousand. Same with powder, when it's all done it cost me around $12 per pound.

Well Regulated
March 16, 2008, 08:49 PM
It all depends on where you live in relation to a retail store. The closest retail store to me would cost about $20+ in gas at today's prices so, there is no real savings in driving there.

evan price
March 16, 2008, 09:07 PM
Here in Central Ohio I have seen primers up in the $36/thousand range and powder is up in the $24/lb range for the most common stuff like W231 or 4895. There are still shops selling primers for $26/k but you have to look and see what little they have, usually not much inventory.

March 16, 2008, 10:28 PM
I am surprised that no one has mentioned not having to pay sales tax if you order online. Where I live buying local can't even come close to the prices I get online. My local dealer wants $141/8lbs Varget. Powder Valley wants $116. Just buying that one item alone more than covers the cost of the hazmat fee. Anything else you buy is just icing on the cake. I maxed out the 48lb limit on hazmat on my last PV order. Probably saved over $400 compared to local.

March 17, 2008, 12:33 AM
As a Kansas resident, I do not "escape" the state sales tax by buying from Powder Valley. (I am envious of you folks who can order from out of state.)

I have bought small quantities of powder and primers from my "local" (35 mile round trip) gun shop, but found Graf & Sons prices to be substantially lower. Their S/H fee is a flat $4.50, regardless of how much or how little you are ordering. If I order several pounds of powder and/or several thousand primers, even with the $20 HazMat fee I come out ahead compared to buying locally.

March 17, 2008, 12:46 AM
I buy most of my powder and primers from Powder Valley, but I also buy from the local gun shop. The savings on one keg of powder is enough to break even on the hazmat, then I save money on the rest of the order.

But if I just need 1000 primers (or 100) or want to try a pound of a new powder, I drive over to Dale's Gun Shop.

March 17, 2008, 07:35 AM
I try and buy from my local dealer unless he happens to be way off in price from the web dealers. I'd like him to stay in business for when I need something and don't want to wait for it to come by UPS.

March 17, 2008, 04:23 PM
I used to buy a pound or two from my local shop but when I had some loads worked out and wanted several pounds of the same lot powder (2400, H4198, Unique) dude offered to order me the kegs and charge me a Haz-Mat. Wouldn't even check for same lot 1lb. containers in their stock for me. I didn't feel like begging them to take my money so now me & two buddies go in on a big Powder Valley buy a time or two a year.

March 17, 2008, 05:37 PM
Usually order gun powder shipped in. Generally 32 lb order. Primers, best prices have been at gun shows.

March 18, 2008, 08:49 AM
I figured that to get past the $20 hazmat fee and the $10 s&h of powder valley, you need to order about $140 of primers/powder to make it worth while. Last time I figured it, I bought 5 lbs of powder and 3000 primers. It was $170 from powdervalley (with hazmat/shipping/handling) vs. $200 (with tax) at my local store.

March 18, 2008, 05:45 PM
I just ordered 25k Wolf Primers and 2 8# jugs of Ramshot Xterminator from Wideners today. Price came to $687 after shipping and hazmat. That puts the primers at about $95 per 5k and the powder at $107 per 8#. I also ordered 4 8# jugs of 844 from Pat's today. Should be around $410 after shipping. He pays the hazmat if you buy enough jugs.

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