Best Way To Store Ammo


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BigGuy52
May 24, 2009, 06:37 PM
What's the best way to store ammo for long periods of time?

I use Army surplus steel ammo cans that have a rubber seal on the lid.

I know they are waterproof, but is there a better way?

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Dunkelheit
May 24, 2009, 07:11 PM
I would shrink wrap them then put them in ammo cans.

wrs840
May 24, 2009, 07:36 PM
In NC, where the humidity right now is 100% outside, and 72% inside, I throw in a desiccant pack when storing in rubber-sealed surplus 50-cal cans, because any airborne moisture closed in, stays in.

Les

jhco
May 24, 2009, 08:34 PM
I have found that its best to store ammo in hi cap mags stuffed in a duffle bag ready to roll for when the zombies come.

donato
May 24, 2009, 09:12 PM
Store mine (in their original boxes) in a dresser drawer. Earlier this year I shot a box of .30-30 ammo that was about 36 years old and they went off just fine.

Also some .22 magnums that were about the same age - worked 100%.

si vis pacem
May 24, 2009, 09:47 PM
I think shrink wrapping your ammo boxes is a good idea for very long term storage, and that's probably what I'll start doing. Right now, I use the ammo can + desiccant approach (we also have high humidity here in Atlanta). My father stores his ammo the same way, and reloads he made 30 or so years ago still go boom.

Mags
May 24, 2009, 11:05 PM
You can store your ammo at my house but I have no gurantees on whether or not it will get fired. :)

Cajun
May 24, 2009, 11:40 PM
I have found that its best to store ammo in hi cap mags stuffed in a duffle bag ready to roll for when the zombies come.



OOOOKKKAAAAYYYY!!!!

22-rimfire
May 24, 2009, 11:47 PM
Earlier this year I shot a box of .30-30 ammo that was about 36 years old and they went off just fine.

But would you stake your life on that ammo if you had a choice? Or would you even take it hunting as your only available ammo?

I store mine in ammo cans in temperature controlled place (ie home with AC), but I still have some in ammo cans stashed in the garage that I need to move out.

Walkalong
May 25, 2009, 12:04 AM
GI ammo cans...hard to beat...tough, watertight, designed for it....

wayneB
May 25, 2009, 12:26 AM
Any military ammo can that's not damaged is the best way to store ammo for long periods of time.
Our DOD will tell you that ammo stored in an United States ammunition canister will still function after being submersed in fresh water for over 15 years. That's what they were tested for.
I can personally say that when I was in Viet Nam we used .223 ball ammo, ammo cans more then once and I'm still here to talk about it.
Funny thing is I just can't remember any one unwrapping the canisters from shrink wrap prior to us pulling them close to us during a fire fight.
I guess bottom line is just what is considered long term storage? I mean if were going to make the ammo into a time capsule we can take a mil. ammo can, wrap it shrink wrap, coat it with liquid tar,and incase it with concrete in a 55 gallon drum coated with epoxy ! ! !
I personally will stick with the used military cans I get from Sportsman's Guide for $14.99 a can, easy in, take what I need, close it & it's air tight................ Fast too.

Si vis pacem, para bellum ...... Latin, Meaning: ......
If you want peace, prepare for war.

musick
May 25, 2009, 12:59 AM
What's the best way to store ammo for long periods of time?

I use Army surplus steel ammo cans that have a rubber seal on the lid.


I think thats the best way myself, w/ a desiccant pack (if applicable) and in a cool/dry area. I smear the gasket with some rubber conditioner as well, just in case. Cheap and effective. After all, those cans are meant to store what?

Ive shot some 8mm ammo from the 30's that was stored like this w/ no problems.

I dont like storing them in the cardboard boxes though...seems like they could become a moisture sponge, depending on your climate of course.

wayneB
May 25, 2009, 01:10 AM
Asking the question of ammo storage.
Does anyone have any information on how long can a ammo clip stay max loaded for a semi-auto weapon? Example, my .45 holds 10 +1, ( although I NEVER chamber one for storage )
since I have a CC license I keep the pistol loaded 24/07, clean it once a week and put it back into the leather holster for the following weeks cleaning. And pray GOD I never have to use it.
What I want to know is how long can the factory clips stay loaded? By keeping it loaded does it weaken the spring, or will it eventually break the spring? Again, I use factory clips only, and NOT the aftermarket type. I've had my share of problems with aftermarket clips, and if your life is dependant on shells electing properly, it just isn't worth saving a few dollars to find out the cheaper clip may not function properly in time of need ! ! !

Si vis pacem, para bellum
Latin, Meaning:
If you want peace, prepare for war

musick
May 25, 2009, 01:17 AM
What I want to know is how long can the factory clips stay loaded? By keeping it loaded does it weaken the spring, or will it eventually break the spring? Again, I use factory clips only, and NOT the aftermarket type.

My understanding is it is the repetitive loading/unloading that weakens the springs. Storing loaded will not tire the spring to the point of failure.

To test your mags, take an empty one and load one round. If the round is pushed and touches the opening like it is supposed to, the spring is good to go.

flrfh213
May 25, 2009, 01:18 AM
i have 7 mil ammo cans in my safe with 22/38/357/9mm/45 and shotgun, i think they will work for years to come, i have personaly fired 45 year old reloads with 0 out of 200 ftf....

wrs840
May 25, 2009, 01:19 AM
Does anyone have any information on how long can a ammo clip stay max loaded for a semi-auto weapon? Well, first, expect the verbage-correctness nazis to swoop in and give you a ration of sh*t for using "clip" when "magazine" is the proper term.

Second, it seems to be well documented that fully-loaded (or partially loaded) mags don't diminish the spring. Don't worry about that. Cycling between compressed and uncompressed wears them out, after a few thousand cycles, that is...

Les

wayneB
May 25, 2009, 01:43 AM
wrs840,
Well excuse me sir, I guess 22 years in the military and the last 12 as an Indiana State Trooper didn't teach me a D**N thing.
Clip, Magazine, whatever ! ! ! How about how long will the springs last in that thing that holds all those bullets.
Just kidding .......... To all thanks for your input I do appreciate it ! ! !

Si vis pacem, para bellum
Latin, Meaning:
If you want peace, prepare for war

Is Latin Not German.

wrs840
May 25, 2009, 01:47 AM
Well excuse me sir, I guess 22 years in the military and the last 12 as an Indiana State Trooper didn't teach me a D**N thing.
Clip, Magazine, whatever ! ! !

Seriously, Thank-You for your service. Didn't mean to dog you...

Happy Memorial Day!

Les

wayneB
May 25, 2009, 02:01 AM
wrs840,
I sincerely Thank You for your appreciation.
AND BY THE WAY I TOOK WHAT YOU SAID AS A JOKE FROM THE START.
You sir, and your family have a safe holiday.


Si vis pacem, para bellum
Latin, Meaning:
If you want peace, prepare for war.
Again this is Latin and Not German.

wrs840
May 25, 2009, 02:08 AM
^^^ Thanks, and no prob.

Welcome to THR!

Les

runrabbitrun
May 25, 2009, 02:33 AM
GI ammo cans...hard to beat...tough, watertight, designed for it....

That's what I use for my bulk ammo.

Suicide*Ride
May 25, 2009, 05:46 AM
I use the DOD ammo cans too. I found that I can get 1/5 - 1/4 more rds. in each DOD ammo can if the rds. are put into plastic ammo cases first.

A lot of factory fodder comes in boxes that will have styrofoam or plastic trays holding the ammunition, & will take up more space than a plastic case from say... MTM Caseguard, that holds the same number of rds. in a smaller package.

I'll cut the flap off the end of the factory box, & write on the back how much I paid & the date of purchase. I also transfer the batch/lot # if not already printed on it. The bullet information is already on the outside of flap so I save the labels that come w/ the cases for my reloads.

500rds. of 357Sig was all I could fit in a 7.62 ammo can. Switched the rds. to the plastic Caseguard cases & now the same green DOD can will hold 700rds. Easy peasy Japaneesy! :rolleyes:

Oh, FWIW.... I store 5K .22lr loose in a DOD ammo can. I know this will sound ANAL to some, but I re-use my yellow plastic Speer bullet cases from reloading (I have a ton!) to hold my .22lr rds. When buying the little 50rd. boxes (remember those? :confused:), I noticed how the factory stacked the rds. up, down, side by side, etc..

1 Speer bullet case will hold 150 rds. of .22lr! Perfect amount of rds. for a day of hunting or plinking & I don't wind up wasting the bullet containers by throwing them away. It's nice to grab 1 or 2 of those than grabbing a handful of loose rimfires & throwing them in a zip-lock bag.

Just a thought... :rolleyes:

SR:)

.cheese.
May 25, 2009, 08:28 AM
I've got mine in repainted/refinished ammo cans, with desiccant in each can.

works pretty well it seems. Heavy as all hell, but works.

djs764
May 25, 2009, 09:46 AM
All my bulk ammo is stored in .50 cal ammo cans. You can fit 13 Winchester 500 bulk pack .22's in one can :D. In my safe I have a Eva-Dry dehumidifier that only needs to be plugged in every couple months to recharge the crystals.

As far as the whole loaded mag issue,it's fine to keep them loaded. Think of it as a coat hanger, if you bend it back and forth it will weaken and break...same principals with the mags. :rolleyes:

thesolidus
May 25, 2009, 10:23 AM
a large, wheeled igloo cooler with dessicant.
Don't know about mil spec or airtight but holds water without leaking so should hold it out too, doesn't look like ammo so no one will immediatly think to steal it, I can wheel the whole thing out to my truck without advertising that I'm going shooting.

Walkalong
May 25, 2009, 10:38 AM
I mean if were going to make the ammo into a time capsule we can take a mil. ammo can, wrap it shrink wrap, coat it with liquid tar,and incase it with concrete in a 55 gallon drum coated with epoxy ! ! !That should do it. Does that come with a can opener like the surplus tins? :D

firesafety3
May 25, 2009, 10:38 AM
One thing to keep in mind. Whatever you wrap it in, smear it with, or box it in, store your ammo in ONE place. A closet, a safe, a reloading shed...store your ammo together. It makes it much easier to control, take inventory, and in the event of a fire it is very convenient to tell responding firefighters where your ammo/powder is stored.

Redneck with a 40
May 25, 2009, 11:01 AM
Buy 2 gun safes, one for the guns, one for the ammo.:D Fill that sucker up, put some dessicant in there, good to go.

jpwilly
May 25, 2009, 11:01 AM
Best Way To Store Ammo

In large quantities!

BossHaug
May 26, 2009, 11:32 AM
I like the igloo idea, as it seems the ammo cans are getting harder to find, heh. I would like to know where to get the dessicant suitable for a gun safe, as I just got one. Thanks

answerguy
May 26, 2009, 01:15 PM
Not something I've tried but what about those vacuum sealer thingies? I've seen a demonstration where they punch a hole in a canning jar lid and suck the air out. Would something like that be adaptable to ammo storage?

chuckusaret
May 26, 2009, 01:32 PM
I am still using .38 and 12 ga ammo that my father bought back in the 50's. Using some on the range, the stuff that looks bad, but keeping the rest for my great grand kids. I also store my ammo in 50 cal ammo cans. I can get 600 rounds of 40 cal in their boxes in each can plus the desiccant. I have 30 ammo cans filled with assorted ammo plus 2 cans with cleaning supplies and a few spare parts. I try to maintain a 1,000 rounds for each gun that I have. The Obamanation has made it pretty hard for us to maintain a stockpile and maintain a shooting program.

maskedman504
May 26, 2009, 01:46 PM
I keep mine in the complimentary plastic storage boxes I get from Cabela's every order. :D

KBintheSLC
May 26, 2009, 01:52 PM
Store mine (in their original boxes) in a dresser drawer. Earlier this year I shot a box of .30-30 ammo that was about 36 years old and they went off just fine.

The ammo might fire just fine, but if it is not stored properly it will become acidic. Needless to say that acidic residue in a gun is not a good thing. It is best to store ammo properly... that means sealed in a water/air tight ammo box with desiccant to absorb the moisture. That is how the military does it, so it should work for you.

Bill H 40
May 26, 2009, 02:11 PM
Hello Wane,
New guy here.
I recently ran 4 magazines through my S&W 659 that sat loaded for well over 20 years. That's roughly 56 rounds without a single problem.
I always wondered about the whole "week spring" concept but they worked perfectly.
I'm no expert, this is just my experience.
Bill

ARNETT44
May 26, 2009, 02:37 PM
Have used military ammo cans for years, and have never had a problem, even with them stored in the garage. I recently fired some rounds stored from 1978 and they all went bang.

jakemccoy
May 26, 2009, 03:07 PM
I store some in ammo cans with desiccant.

I store some in magazines ready to go.

I store some in the original box they came in because there's no more room in the cans or magazines.

BCC
May 26, 2009, 08:22 PM
"Buy 2 gun safes, one for the guns, one for the ammo. Fill that sucker up, put some dessicant in there, good to go."

If this works, I think it would be the way to go for me. I have my son's friends in the house all the time and I like the idea of secure storage.

SquirrelNuts
May 26, 2009, 08:27 PM
G.I. ammo cans. No plastic wrap or dessicant. When you open one to inspect for purchase, buy one that stinks inside. The stink means it seals up tight.

JohnBT
May 26, 2009, 08:29 PM
"Store mine (in their original boxes) in a dresser drawer. Earlier this year I shot a box of .30-30 ammo that was about 36 years old and they went off just fine."

I agree, ammo isn't very fragile at all if stored indoors with heat and maybe ac. And 36 years isn't all that long really. If I stored ammo outdoors like the Army does I'd worry about it, but I don't.

John

Straight Shooter
May 26, 2009, 11:35 PM
When you open one to inspect for purchase, buy one that stinks inside. The stink means it seals up tight.

Good tip. Thanks

ghoster
May 26, 2009, 11:39 PM
a cupple of weeks ago my big brother came home to visit an we were looking around in the old cattle medicine cubbard in the barn (we were a dairy farm till i was 14) and found a stash of shells on the top shelves. several of the boxes were from the hardware in town that closed in 57.:eek:

.22 killed a few groundhogs we found.
12 guage killed lots of dove ( yummy)

before anyone gets wound-- anything that can be shown to damage crops is a varment and can be killed. (bellies full of my seed corn).
i kill it, i eat it , i dont care what any one thinks.:evil:

so at a min. it was 53 years old and fired fine. old open barn in a not so tight cubbard on a shelf in a box.:what:

i think the hipe of storage is a little over rated. :D
ps i'm in ohio so plenty of climate change.

shotgunjoel
May 26, 2009, 11:51 PM
I'll cut the flap off the end of the factory box, & write on the back how much I paid & the date of purchase. I also transfer the batch/lot # if not already printed on it. The bullet information is already on the outside of flap so I save the labels that come w/ the cases for my reloads.

Nifty idea, I'll have to do that.

NotSoFast
May 27, 2009, 12:07 AM
GI ammo cans work best. If you're buying military surplus ammo, leave them in the containers they came in.

Ohio Gun Guy
May 27, 2009, 12:41 AM
The best way......

At my house :D

Seriously, another vote for GI ammo cans. I picked up a .30 cal ammo can in servicable shape for 3.00 last weekend.

Deus Machina
May 27, 2009, 08:17 AM
My local shop told me it's going to be impossible to get new cans, for the same reason the military can't sell used brass. :rolleyes:

I've got half a dozen 7.62 cans I'm working at filling with various calibers.

Ammo is inert enough that it's simple to save. Put ammo in the can. Toss in a handful of little desiccant packs. Close can.

Voila. You can wrap it in duct tape or put a lock on it (with seals) if you want it harder to open.

DHJenkins
May 27, 2009, 10:30 AM
Don't laugh, but what about using a vacuum bagger like the foodsaver?

The material comes in rolls 12"x20' long so you can size your own bags.

Seems like no air at all would be the ideal solution.

JohnBT
May 27, 2009, 11:20 AM
"it was 53 years old and fired fine."

"i think the hipe of storage is a little over rated."

I've been saying that for years, especially when ammo is stored in a residence. Of all the old ammo I've shot, or that I've seen my relatives shoot, the only bad rounds were from a half a box of .32 S&W blanks from the late '30s or maybe 1940 or '41. As far as I could determine they'd been stored on a shelf in an unheated smokehouse that was used for storage and half of them were duds.

John

runrabbitrun
May 27, 2009, 01:43 PM
I'm off to the military surplus store today.

There're gonna think I'm nuts sniffing
the ammo cans, but I'm going to do it. :scrutiny:

Good tip. :)

chuckusaret
May 27, 2009, 02:24 PM
I like the gun safe storage for safe keeping but to hard to rotate the stock. I have 30 50 cal ammo cans filled with ammo. I inspect 3 or 4 cans each month and check the desicant. I have not had a problem with ammo storage in the last 40 or 50 years that I can remember

answerguy
May 27, 2009, 08:07 PM
There're gonna think I'm nuts sniffing
the ammo cans, but I'm going to do it.

Good tip.

Wish I knew what this was in response to.

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