How much is too much? (Ammunition)

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Hurricane, Jan 27, 2013.

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  1. Hurricane

    Hurricane Member

    Aug 17, 2010
    I was curious how other members felt in regards to stockpiling ammunition. I find the quandary to be that I want enough for myself but I don't want to die sitting on top of thousands and thousands of rounds I never used. By the same token I don't want to have a lot of my money tied up in said stockpile that I never used.

    I've seen guys that have tens of thousands of primers and supplies just for reloading. My reloading supplies is anemic in comparison. As for ammunition, depending on the gun I have anywhere from a handful to thousands of rounds. With the current scare I haven't done much shooting, it almost feels like we're in a bad harvest year.

    It would be nice to have 10,000 rounds of 9mm but I don't even think I'd get through it all in a lifetime. Granted if there were more shooting events in my area I may. But for pure recreational shooting I have never felt I didn't have enough.

    I realize enough and more are obvious answers. But what is considered practical or safe?
  2. JRWhit

    JRWhit Member

    Sep 13, 2012
    usually it's enough all the way up until you ask that question.
  3. murphys_law

    murphys_law Member

    Dec 31, 2011
    I feel like no matter how much I have the price is never going to go down. I've just started shooting regularly in the last year or so, and was caught off guard by this panic although I do have a press for 9mm and components for about 1k rounds. In the future I will slowly start building my supplies to a level I think is appropriate(probably somewhere about 5k) and I will probably get a single stage press so that I can load rifle rounds and start getting components for those calibers. I'm thinking with the exception of .223 I will probably keep enough components on hand for 100 rounds for my rifles and have that much already made or bought.
  4. ball3006

    ball3006 Member

    Dec 26, 2002
    I just stacked it deep when it was cheap. I have no idea how much I have.....The price of ammo is beyond my means now.....chris3
  5. dragon813gt

    dragon813gt Member

    Jun 30, 2011
    No such thing as to much. Now your insurance company might beg to differ. NFPA only allows for 10k primers and 50#s(in correct wooden container) of powder to be stored in a residential home. Most reloaders are well over this. There is no NFPA limit for small arms ammo storage in a residence. But your municipality might have limits.

    The more you have the more you're likely to shoot it up. So the chances of you leaving a lot behind are slim. Barring a random accident that causes an unnatural death.

    Buy as much as you can afford as it's not getting any cheaper.

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  6. berettaprofessor

    berettaprofessor Member

    Mar 25, 2008
    For your heirs, it'll be like leaving gold bullion behind....and it has gone up faster over the last 5 years than gold (which has doubled itself). So buy what you can afford to set aside and don't sweat it.
  7. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Member

    Jun 11, 2005
    Buy as much as you can afford and think in terms of what you actually use on a monthly or annual basis in deciding what is enough. If you never shoot a particular caliber and you own a gun in that caliber, one box is probably enough.
  8. glocking26

    glocking26 Member

    Apr 7, 2004
    Glen Mills Pa.
    15.000 rds of FMJ 9mm here. I have two sub machine guns to feed. Oh yea and a glock 19.
  9. NickEllis

    NickEllis Member

    Jun 8, 2003
    Arlington, TX
    Ask yourself this: when is the last time ammo prices went down?

    Would you ask yourself: "how much gold is too much gold"?
  10. Twmaster

    Twmaster Member

    Jun 5, 2011
    Dallas, Republic of Texas
    I have about a thousand .223 rounds loaded and the components to load another 2500. I look at it as a savings account. I have thousands of rounds of 9MM and .45ACP loaded. I'll not have to buy ammo for a long time.

    What ammo shortage?
  11. nathan

    nathan Member

    Feb 4, 2003
    Buy as much you can afford, is the mantra since the 1990s when Clinton enact the 1994 AWB . That is enough to tell you it can come back when the right forces are at work. I have a few thousands of 8 mm mauser surplus . I got them when they were literally cheap , 900 rds for $ 60 from Century Arms.

    And that was like nine years ago .
  12. bobinoregon

    bobinoregon Member

    Jan 20, 2012
    OR coast
    The guns I rarely shoot I still like to have at least 200 rounds each. For a few of the collection that is a lifetime supply, for others that is an afternoon of fun. Reloading makes it easier to have more on hand than you might readily use but it never hurts to buy when you can afford a few extra if you have room.
  13. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

    Apr 24, 2007
    Honestly I don't believe I will ever feel like I have too much ammo, though I'm sure that when the floors start to sag I may have to rethink my storage options.

    Buy whatever you can afford (or find right now), and keep adding to it whenever finances and availability make it possible to do so.
  14. bikerdoc

    bikerdoc Moderator In Memoriam

    Jan 8, 2008
    Southern Virginia
    Enough plus 100 is too much if your looking for a definition. Usually for the last 45 years I bought 2, shot one, weather it be box, brick, pack or case, Since retiring I have slowed down but I still get some and reload also.
  15. Jorg Nysgerrig

    Jorg Nysgerrig Member

    Apr 13, 2006
    Those are two very different things. Loaded ammo is pretty safe. Practicality is in the eye of the beholder.

    10,000 rounds sound like a lot. But it really isn't. At only one range trip a month, shooting only 100 rounds a trip, that's 8 years worth. Hopefully, you're planning on being around a bit longer than that.

    But, it really depends. If you're like a large number of gun owners who like the idea of owning guns better than shooting them and make it to the range a handful of times a year, 500 rounds can last for years. My father used to buy a box of .30-06 and expect it to last about 10 years. (1 per year to check the scope's zero, 1 per year for a deer.)

    If you do any training classes, 500 rounds lasts a few days. Likewise, those who shoot any of the competitive sports, even on just a recreational basis, can blow through ammo at an alarming rate.

    You don't have to be a hardcore shooter or a serious competitor to go through quite a bit of ammo.

    I have a decent supply of ammo, but that's because I shoot it up. I don't have it just to have it.
  16. Jim Mac

    Jim Mac Member

    Jun 13, 2012
    after the ammo scare in 08. when we went to walmart, if they had .223 or 9mm I would pick up a box or two. Not sure how much I actually have. Bought 3 tins of 54R for the PSL and nagants, but to be truthful, I went shooting exactly twice last year at the range and only once so far this year, even though Im hoping to go more often. jim
  17. Lex Luthier

    Lex Luthier Member

    Mar 7, 2011
    Twin Cities
    You stack it up in good times and have fun with it. If you are worried about dying, make a will and make a friend very very lucky indeed.

    When I go to Jesus, the executor of my estate will make a phone call to one of my best friends who will inherit my entire arsenal; weapons, ammo, tactical gear, everything. Hopefully he will miss me a little bit, but will probably be having too much fun all suited and booted and blowing stuff up. My wife will not have to deal with it and my legacy will carry on in my brother in arms.
  18. Romeo 33 Delta

    Romeo 33 Delta Member

    Apr 17, 2011
    Lex ... you're a good friend. I'm certain he will fondly remember you every single day he goes to the range ... I know I would! I'm getting up there myself ... not just ready to quit shooting ... but realize that time is NOT on my side and time is NOT my friend!

    How much ammo is enough? If you don't run out ... that's enough. If you do run out ... then you didn't have enough.
  19. RetiredUSNChief

    RetiredUSNChief Member

    Jul 9, 2012
    SC (Home), VA (Work)
    How much is too much is every bit as personal a decision as how much is enough.

    For starters, what are your shooting habits? What is the intented use for the ammunition? What is the availability of the ammunition you shoot?

    When ammunition is readily available, obviously one can buy what one needs whenever they need it. There is no need for large stores of ammunition beyond some amount for self defense and a few extra boxes.

    If one is heavy into shooting sports, then the need to have large amounts increases dramatically. Buying in bulk saves money. Precision reloads in bulk for accuracy and shooting schedule means a larger stock on hand.

    If one shoots routinely to maintain a certain level of proficiency, for whatever reason, than a larger amount of stock is generally called for, for the same reasons as for sport shooting.

    If all a person does, or cares to do, is occasional plinking, target shooting, or hunting, then smaller amounts are generally called for.

    If one is planning for the Zombie Apocalypse, then stockpiling like you're Burt Gummer is in order.
  20. BSA1

    BSA1 member

    Apr 20, 2011
    West of the Big Muddy, East of the Rockies and Nor
    How much is too much?

    When I have one more round of ammunition than you.
  21. Queen_of_Thunder

    Queen_of_Thunder member

    Jul 28, 2012
    Where God purifies the soul. The West Texas desert
    When the floors sag you either reinforce the floor or move into a home with a stronger floor or ship the ammo to me.
  22. Rembrandt

    Rembrandt Member

    Feb 1, 2003
    Once hunted with an old timer in Wyoming that only needed one round each year to bag his deer. He reached into his jacket and pulled out an old worn 20 round box of 30-06 which had five loaded rounds remaining. The 15 spent cases represented 15 deer bagged each of those years.

    How much is too much?.......depends on how good a shot you are.
  23. wooly bugger

    wooly bugger Member

    Dec 8, 2009
    I used to think stockpiling was for kooks. Now I wish I'd been a kook.

    I'm in catch up mode, buying whatever I can now. Thankfully match quality .22LR (~$10/box) is still available. I don't shoot that much, and my guns are snobby about the bulk stuff, so I've been buying what I can. I'd rather shoot 50 rounds of Lapua Center-X than a brick of Remington Thunderbolts.

    I'm getting an M1 Garand as soon as CMP ships it to me, and once I figure out what it likes, I'll buy a ton of that as well as learning to reload and buy components.

    My two biggest ammo-related fears (in descending order) are:
    1) FFL + NICS to purchase anything but the run of the mill stuff. Enhanced by a NYS-style reporting to the state of quantity purchased, which will make bulk purchases uncomfortable. So, basically a $100 surcharge on my Lapua and M2 ball.

    2) High taxes on ammo. They're proposing 5% in NJ, but if that passes, it's just the camel's nose, I'm sure.
  24. 4v50 Gary

    4v50 Gary Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 19, 2002
    Too much is never the issue.
  25. dfsixstring

    dfsixstring Member

    May 10, 2011
    I've been putting ammo away for a while, now I'm glad I did. It's like buying stocks - buy low, sell high. In this case, buy cheap and hold tight when its as high as it is now.

    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD
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