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Thread: How long until you disgard your ammo?

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    Default How long until you disgard your ammo?

    I have a question about ammo that rides in my .44 mag revolver. How long do you keep it in the gun before you should put it on the shelf or replace it with new ammo? The reason I ask is I don't shoot my .44 every year, it is on my side all the time while hunting and fishing and it sees a lot of elements from rain, sleet, snow and sun/heat. I clean the gun regularly. It would really be a bummer if I get in a pickle and need to touch a round off and it does nothing.... I have the 330 grain HSM ammo. Wondering what others have done or suggest.

    Thanks,

    MTfisher

  2. #2
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Don't worry about it. If you don't know your gun fires each year new ammo adds nothing to the mix.JMOFO
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Member AK Ray's Avatar
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    In your regular practice at a range you should fire off your carry ammo so that its fresh each season. So every year is what I am saying.

    Antidotal story: a LA cop cleaned his issued revolver daily with a solvent gun cleaner. In nearly 20 years he had never drawn and used his side arm in the line of duty. For his yearly qualification at the range he used ammo provided at the range. He died on duty when his revolver went "click" and the perp shot him. Post mortem showed that his duty ammo was completely saturated with solvent from nearly 20 years of daily cleaning the same 6 rounds over and over again.

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    When I first got my 357 I bought some buffalo bore 200 grainers, it was and is my carry gun for fishing, bowhunting etc. and like others it was carried in all kinds of rough weather. I didn't use it for awhile but then started to carry it again. A buddy asked me if I knew the ammo was good, I figured why not but then since we had to wait for the bird to pick us up I figured we'd do some stump shooting. Out of my remaining 14 rounds, three went click. I now have a fresh box and retire anything that was in it when it gets really wet for range use.

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    Quote Originally Posted by AK Ray View Post
    Antidotal story: a LA cop cleaned his issued revolver daily with a solvent gun cleaner. In nearly 20 years he had never drawn and used his side arm in the line of duty. For his yearly qualification at the range he used ammo provided at the range. He died on duty when his revolver went "click" and the perp shot him. Post mortem showed that his duty ammo was completely saturated with solvent from nearly 20 years of daily cleaning the same 6 rounds over and over again.
    Sounds like just a story

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    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    How can you go that long without sqeezing lead through the barrel? That'd drive me nuts.

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    Member winibezold's Avatar
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    i agree with bullelkklr, I would go crazy. I run my 454 carry ammo about every 2 weeks and load more just as often. I've had rounds about as old as those pop the primer and lodge in the barrel, so I think its alot safer to cycle thorugh frequently. also, if you are carrying that gun for defense but aren't burning any of your defense loads in it, how do you know what to expect and how to handle it when the stress runs high??

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    Member Bullwinkle50's Avatar
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    At least every year and I will dispose of they old for you. Forward all old ammo directly to me for proper disposal. PM me for delivery instructions.

    Randy

  9. #9

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    I shoot a lot of guns, just haven't had the chance to shoot the mag lately. The price of ammo these days I can't afford to shoot it every 2 weeks... I think what I will do it keep an empty box labeled "field loads". Once I carry them for a few weeks I will put them in the "Field box" and rotate to new ammo. Use the field ammo as range ammo when I can. Shooting the gun, or any of my guns in stressful situations shouldn't be a problem, depending on where I am or what im doing I carry the 45-70 or 12 gauge or .44.

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    Member Happily's Avatar
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    Doesn't need to be rotated every couple of weeks but how long would you carry the same condom in your wallet if you we're hanging around crack ho's and vast amounts of tequila. You gotta shoot occasionally, nothing worse than one in the "air" and one in the "hair" with dangerous game.

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    Member shimano 33's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Happily View Post
    Doesn't need to be rotated every couple of weeks but how long would you carry the same condom in your wallet if you we're hanging around crack ho's and vast amounts of tequila. You gotta shoot occasionally, nothing worse than one in the "air" and one in the "hair" with dangerous game.
    Great Analogy! Really sewed the meaning together for me lol.

  12. #12

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    Sitting in a chamber, cylinder or magazine or on the shelf, the life of the ammo is the same as long as it is not contaminated. I have some .44 mag. ammo that is several years old. I am sure it will fire just fine in my revolver.

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    Member pacific23's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by .338 mag. View Post
    Sitting in a chamber, cylinder or magazine or on the shelf, the life of the ammo is the same as long as it is not contaminated. I have some .44 mag. ammo that is several years old. I am sure it will fire just fine in my revolver.
    You did read the part about on his side ALL OF THE TIME, RAIN SLEET OR SNOW?

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    Member tzieli22's Avatar
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    Can be a trick question so to speak. I have ammo from the 60's that shoots just fine. I honestly have never had a miss fire due to bad ammo that was properly cared for season after season. I also dropped my 45/70 in the drink bake in 2009. Was in the water for a few minutes while I recovered it. Took those rounds out and marked them. Since I shoot the same round out of it, I put those rounds into a bag, and once a year I have shot 1 round along with my other brass. Saw no change in my shots.

    Basically, i think I'm saying if it's been properly loaded and crimped, I don't think you would see an issue. If your concerned, shoot the rounds. As mentioned, in retrospect, you don't want to wait until show time... to find out your bullets don't shoot.
    Tony

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    Amno will stay good in some cases a normal life time if kept in a cool/ dry can. What kills ammo is cleaning solvents, and moisture over time. If you clean your firearms on a regular basis but leave ammo in and the weapon real oily there is a chance that a round will go click when you need it. Cycle your ammo out when in doubt, if you down load and find oil on the primers that may be a good idea that you may be putting too much oil / solvent on the gun and change out the ammo. The loudest sound you'll ever hear is click when you need it to go bang.

    Sweepint
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    I rotate the ammo in my carry guns, three/four times a year. I just want 'fresh' ammo for the 'just in case'. How long will ammo stay good? Under the proper conditions, years, but that is not the same ammo that I would rely on in a 'defense of life position'! I have ammo that was reload several years ago, that still 'goes bang' when needed and is fun to shoot for practice.

  17. #17

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    Thanks for all the replies with insightful information. Much appreciated.

  18. #18
    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    You can still fine national match ammo made in the 50's used in matches today.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Member GrassLakeRon's Avatar
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    My mosin shot 200 rounds from 1927!

    Ron
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    AK RAY - " ... Antidotal story: a LA cop cleaned his issued revolver daily with a solvent gun cleaner. In nearly 20 years he had never drawn and used his side arm in the line of duty. For his yearly qualification at the range he used ammo provided at the range. He died on duty when his revolver went "click" and the perp shot him. Post mortem showed that his duty ammo was completely saturated with solvent from nearly 20 years of daily cleaning the same 6 rounds over and over again. "
    If the "LA cop" in your post refers to Los Angeles and the Los Angeles Police Dept., then it is as another poster wrote, "Just a story." The Los Angeles Police Dept. and the Los Angeles Sheriff's Dept. have for many, many years, been issuing new factory duty ammo, every six months. If the six months "old ammo" has not been shot, it is turned in and used for practice and qualification. The new ammo is used for duty.

    After 15 years with the Los Angeles Sheriff's Dept., including five years in Weapons Training, plus knowing many L.A.P.D. officers, I've never known, or heard of an officer or Deputy cleaning his issue sidearm every day.

    Hell, with some, it was hard enough to get them to clean their handguns after qualifying every three months at the range.

    Just my take on that anecdotal story.

    L.W.

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