How come some rounds cost more than others?


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Nightcrawler
February 10, 2003, 05:18 AM
And I don't mean super-rare oddballs like .470NE that cost $20 a round.

This also excludes the huge quantities of surplus ammo out there.

How come .45 Colt costs more than .44 Magnum? Sure, the .45 Colt supply is (supposedly) smaller (doubt that's true anymore, with CAS as big as it is), but there are less .45 Colt guns out there than .44 Mag ones (again, not necessarily true anymore). Yet .45 Colt "cheap stuff" retails for considerably more than comparitive .44 Magnum.

For that matter, why does .44 cost more than .357? Why does .45ACP cost more than 9mm? It seems that in many cases, the bigger the round is, the more it costs. Not always, though.

Why does .45-70 cost more than .30-06?

Why do shotgun shells cost any more than typical centerfire rifle ammo? If anything, they should be cheaper; their hulls are plastic, which costs a lot less to manufacture than brass. Note that some shotshells ARE very cheap; Wal-Mart's 100-packs for $15.00, for instance. But buckshot and slugs are always expensive.

Just curious. Any ideas?

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Kharn
February 10, 2003, 08:20 AM
Buckshot and slugs are expensive because most people only use a few boxes (if not just a single box) a year, unlike us gunnies that will blast until we can no longer pick up the shotgun.

Another factor is shipping weight, shotgun shells weigh a lot compared to some (most?) centerfire rounds due to the ~1oz lead payload.

Kharn

Hand_Rifle_Guy
February 10, 2003, 08:24 AM
Personal opinion and first guess is probably brass production. Brass is the single most expensive cartridge component. Some calibers are produced in larger quantities due to demand. Lots-o-guns = lots-o-brass = lower cost. That'd be .44 mag in the big-bores, and 9mm and .38 special in the medium bores. Less available chamberings make for scarcer brass.

Bullet costs can jump around a lot, too. JHP's cost more than FMJ's to produce, and the big-bore bullets also weigh around twice as much. (115-125 vs. 230-250, for instance.) Lead isn't free, and fifty rounds is a hunk of weight. You buy metals by weight for the most part.

BigG
February 10, 2003, 10:18 AM
It's the miracle of the marketplace at work. Lots of production = cheaper prices. Limited production = higher price. Economies of scale and all that.

MitchSchaft
February 10, 2003, 11:23 AM
How come some rounds cost more than others?

It's called supply and demand.

gk1
February 10, 2003, 11:26 AM
While I expect that economy of scale is a factor, I think most of it is the arbitrary markup. The difference in cost of lead in 230 grain .45 ACP is not significantly greater than the cost of lead in 200 grain 10mm, and 10mm production volume is certainly nowhere near .45 ball, yet the .45 is still more expensive. The reason? It still sells well. 9mm is about the same cost as .25 ACP; again, the .25 is purchased at $8/box, so why lower the price?

George

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