Keep the powder dry

Discussion in 'Handloading and Reloading' started by leadchucker, Feb 7, 2017.

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  1. leadchucker

    leadchucker Member

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    In addition to heat and cold, moisture can contribute to smokeless powder deterioration. I keep my powder sealed in the containers it came in, and I keep it in a basement where the temperature is pretty steady, but it can get pretty humid down there. Some seldom used powders could stay there for years.

    What would be the harm in putting a couple of the little silica gel desiccant packages in each jug of powder? Think it would help?
     
  2. rg1

    rg1 Member

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    Not being a chemist, I wouldn't put anything into the powder container. Don't know what the chemicals in the powder would do to the silica gel packs. May ruin the powder. I'd try the big chest sized Tupperware type containers and keep the powder off the floor?
     
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  3. Ed Jaws

    Ed Jaws Member

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    Build or buy a smokeless powder approved container and pick up a couple of
    Eva-dry E-333 Renewable Mini Dehumidifier from Amazon. They also come in 500 cu. ft. and larger. Works for me in my basement.

    I also use the larger electric dehumidifiers to keep the bad things humidity does in the summer down in the whole basement. The furnace takes care of it in the winter.
     
  4. Havok7416
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    Havok7416 Member

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    You aren't doing yourself any favors by putting a desiccant in there. If you have the powder in it's original container, it is as protected as it needs to be. I have powder that has been sitting around awhile and I have shot up powder that has been sitting around awhile in environments similar to the one you describe. No problems.
     
  5. GBExpat

    GBExpat Member

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    Keep them tightly sealed and they will be fine.

    Quite frankly, I would be much more worried about the condition of my basement and its contents because of the high RH.

    I would focus on solving that asap. ;)
     
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  6. clearcut

    clearcut Member

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    powder kept in it's original containers lasts for decades. the smell will be your best indicator if it's bad.


    CC
     
  7. SC Shooter

    SC Shooter Member

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    When ever I have finished reloading, I always put the unused powder from my powder feed back into its original container and make sure the cap is on tight. Some of my powder is a few years old, and never misses a beat.
     
  8. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    I just don't know what else is in silica gel desiccant packages and I don't know how it will react with gunpowder. Since gunpowder is not shipped with silica gel packages, I would not put them in the container.
     
  9. GBExpat

    GBExpat Member

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    Just thought that I would follow-up on this aspect ...

    Awhile back I noticed that the basement of my house, as years passed, was slowly getting more humid during the warm/hot months.

    At first, just developing an "air-flow" plan mitigated the issue ... but I finally decided that I needed a dehumidifier for seasonal use.

    I got a "70 Pint" Frigidaire and ran it to-full overnight, that first night. Next morning as I entered the basement I stopped ... something was different ... after that one night the air smelled & felt different. Fresh. :)

    Since then I have developed a routine. I constantly monitor the RH down there and when it starts to creep up towards 60%, I will turn on the DH prior to going to bed. There are rare, terribly-humid periods when I find I need to double-up on that pattern, running the DH to-full during the day, also.

    The DH in conjunction with the air-flow plan does a great job in my basement.

    =================

    Relative to propellant storage in a humid area ...

    I have some propellants that have been survived for decades while spending long periods in HUMID areas.

    So long as they are in properly-sealed, good-condition containers, any degradation that occurs will not be due to the humidity levels outside of the container.
     
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