Read the Beforeitsnews.com story here. Advertise at Before It's News here.
Profile image
Story Views
Now:
Last hour:
Last 24 hours:
Total:

Does Ammo Expire? This Man Fired His 60 Years Old Ammo And This Is What Happened

% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.


Does Ammo Expire? This Man Fired His 60 Years Old Ammo And This Is What Happened

As preppers, we’re all used to rotating our food supplies. When you come home from the store with five cans of soup they go to the back of the shelf, and when you decide you want soup for dinner you take a can from the front.

That keeps your food supplies as new as possible, and you should do the same with your ammunition. New bullets in, old bullets out.

What if you slip up, though? If you’re running low on ammo, and all that’s left on the shelf is a faded box of rounds you picked up when Reagan was in the White House, what should you do? Is that old ammunition still going to work – and is it even safe to try?

Factory Loads Only?

First, what kind of ammunition is it? If you have old factory-loaded ammo, hold on to it.

If you have old handloads that you didn’t load yourself, get rid of it.

Old handloads

You don’t know how accurately it was charged, and firing it risks damage to your guns or even injury to you.

If you’re a reloader you can break it down and reuse the cases and bullets, otherwise take it to your local range or police for safe disposal.

It’s just not worth the risk.

Related: Top 13 Survival Uses For Fired Ammo

On the other hand, if you have commercial ammunition you can be pretty confident every round has the right charge in it and should be safe to fire. Ammunition isn’t like food; the chemicals in it will degrade over time – everything does – but very slowly.

Ammunition that’s years, even decades, old could work as well as the day it was made.

What About Corrosive Primers?

Many shooters are worried about the primers in older ammunition.

Starting in the 1920s commercial ammo makers started switching to non-corrosive primer fillings, but anything made before that used primers that contained Potassium Chlorate and Potassium Perchlorate. These leave a residue that attracts water, and that can cause rust.

Does Ammo Expire This Man Fired His 60 Years Old Ammo And This Is What HappenedMilitary ammunition was made with corrosive primers for much longer, and there’s still a lot of surplus ammo on the market that uses them.

Before you reject ammo made with corrosive primers it’s worth asking why the military kept using them so long. Simple – they’re very reliable, and they’re particularly stable in long-term storage.

If you’re considering using very old ammo corrosive primers are actually a good thing, because the primers are probably still as reliable as the day they were made. As for the residue, if you clean your guns properly after firing this won’t be a problem.

Ammunition Storage

The most important thing about ammunition isn’t its age or what sort of primer it has; it’s how it was stored.

Ammo box

If ammo has been kept in a sealed box, protected from moisture and extreme temperature changes, it will last more or less indefinitely.

If it hasn’t been protected from moisture and temperature changes, of course, you might have some problems.

Related: How And Where To Store Ammo

Ammunition won’t be harmed by a quick dip in water, but if it’s kept in a damp place for a while it’s going to suffer – and every component is vulnerable. Primers, propellant, cases and even bullets will all degrade in a moist environment. And any one of them can cause a failure.

You can’t really tell the condition of propellant without breaking down a round, but visually checking the outside will tell you a lot about the state of the ammo. Corroded primers are likely to be defective or unstable, and those rounds should be discarded.

Light corrosion on brass casesLight corrosion on brass cases isn’t always a problem, although you might get failures to feed or eject depending on how bad it is, but heavily corroded brass means you shouldn’t try firing that round.

If there are any signs of splitting or cracking on the case, discard it.

It’s vital to check the actual bullet on old ammunition. If the bullet is loose, or pushed back into the case, get rid of that round. Loose bullets are likely to cause stoppages; deep-seated ones can raise chamber pressure and cause a dangerous breech explosion.

Watch out for heavily corroded bullets too – if the corrosion is bad enough they can stick in the barrel.

Related: How Much Ammo You Need For Practice Just To Keep Your Shooting Skills In Shape

Some people worry about squibs with old ammo – where a round doesn’t have enough power to push the bullet out the muzzle, and it stays stuck in the barrel. If that happens, the next round is likely to cause a breech explosion.

Squibs are very rare, though, and when they do happen it’s usually because of careless handloading. If an old round fires at all, it’s as likely to fire properly as a new one.

Firing Old Ammo

Does Ammo Expire This Man Fired His 60 Years Old Ammo And This Is What Happened

So in theory, old ammo should work fine as long as it’s been properly stored. How does that stack up to the reality?

I’ve fired .303 British ammunition that was well over 30 years old, and it worked perfectly.

The internet is full of videos of people using even older ammo. This rifleman is firing German 8mm made in 1942 – 79 years old, and as effective as ever.

Another shooter loaded his pistol with 96-year-old .45 ACP and every round fired. Even 88-year-old .22 long worked perfectly most of the time in an old revolver and a semi-auto rifle.

How about 50-year-old 12-gauge or 60-year-old 7.62mmx39? That’s no problem either. Got some 70-year-old Swedish 9mm? It’s probably as good as new. Even this 125-year-old black powder 11mm Werndl round fired.

If you don’t know how ammo has been stored there’s always a risk of misfires with older rounds, but if it looks to be in good condition it’s definitely worth trying. Even if one round in ten fails to fire – and that’s on the high side – it’s a lot better than having no ammo at all.

Rotate your ammunition supply and keep it as fresh as possible, but if old ammo is all you have left, use it and make it count.

You may also like:

house-bphYou Pass by This Plant Everyday Without Knowing How to Use It When SHTF

US Nuclear Target Map. Do You Live in The Danger Zone? (Video)

10+ Steps to Take Now for the Upcoming Economic Collapse

How to Make Shotgun Shells at Home? (With Pictures)



Before It’s News® is a community of individuals who report on what’s going on around them, from all around the world.

Anyone can join.
Anyone can contribute.
Anyone can become informed about their world.

"United We Stand" Click Here To Create Your Personal Citizen Journalist Account Today, Be Sure To Invite Your Friends.

Please Help Support BeforeitsNews by trying our Natural Health Products below!


Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at https://mitocopper.com M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Order by Phone at 888-388-7003 or online at https://www.herbanomic.com M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Order by Phone at 888-388-7003 or online at https://www.herbanomics.com M - F 9am to 5pm EST


Humic & Fulvic Trace Minerals Complex - Nature's most important supplement! Vivid Dreams again!

HNEX HydroNano EXtracellular Water - Improve immune system health and reduce inflammation

Ultimate Clinical Potency Curcumin - Natural pain relief, reduce inflammation and so much more.

MitoCopper - Bioavailable Copper destroys pathogens and gives you more energy. (See Blood Video)
Oxy Powder - Natural Colon Cleanser!  Cleans out toxic buildup with oxygen! 
Nascent Iodine - Promotes detoxification, mental focus and thyroid health.
Smart Meter Cover -  Reduces Smart Meter radiation by 96%!  (See Video)

Immusist Beverage Concentrate - Proprietary blend, formulated to reduce inflammation while hydrating and oxygenating the cells.

Report abuse
Loading...

Comments

Your Comments
Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

Total 1 comment
  • Wity

    OLD AMMO DOES WORK AS LONG AS IT HAS DRY – P0WDER AND PRIMAS….

MOST RECENT
Load more ...

SignUp

Login

Newsletter

Email this story
Email this story

If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.