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9/19/2017 7:27:10 PM
Posted: 12/15/2002 4:17:54 AM EDT
Looking for advise on storing ammo. No real room for a safe. But have concerns about (what if ) a fire?
Link Posted: 12/15/2002 12:45:27 PM EDT
Outside of keeping ammo in a safe, there isn't much you can do. I am not sure if you are concerned about protecting the ammo from fire or the danger posed by the ammo. But heat will ruin ammo fast and even if inside a safe, it may or may not save the ammo. I can say this though, as a volunteer fireman I have been at house fires where rounds were cooking off.....and it's no picnic. I had a 30-30 casing come through a window about 2 ft from my head one night as the round cooked off. The cook-off generated enough momentum to propel the casing through the window and about 30 ft to the street. I'm sure that it wouldn't have been pleasant to have taken this thing to the face while it was on it's way out. So if your home catches fire keep a safe distance from it and inform the fireman of the ammo stash and it's location as they arrive. They (I) will appreciate it very much!
Link Posted: 12/15/2002 1:21:04 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/15/2002 1:30:08 PM EDT
I can't imagine what unusual circumstances propelled a .30/30 case through a window and 30 feet into the street. Both the NRA and SAAMI have conducted tests. Reported in the NRA Firearms Fact Book on pages 145-146 are one notable SAAMI test in which a "large quantity" of cartridge and shotshell ammunition was burned in a fire of oil soaked wood. The men conducting the test remained within 20 foot of the fire without injury. "The cartridges and shells exploded from time to time, but there was no general explosion or throwing off of bullets or shot to any distance." In a test done by the NRA rifle and pistol cartridges were cooked off on a hot plate underneath a corrugated cardboard box. "...neither fragments of the bullet cases nor the bullets penetrated the cardboard." The NRA concludes with this statement: "These tests and years of experience indicate that there is no appreciable hazard in storing any amount of loaded small arms ammunition in a dwelling." From my personal experience, I have burned off thousands of duds and bad reloads in backyard fires. I packed the ammunition into #10 cans and threw them in. I've never had anything exit the can. Telling the firemen about the stash when they respond is a prudent thing, but I wouldn't worry about their safety.
Link Posted: 12/16/2002 1:27:00 AM EDT
Thanks for the replies. Just want to be as safe as possible.
Link Posted: 12/16/2002 2:23:29 AM EDT
Originally Posted By bigdb1: I can't imagine what unusual circumstances propelled a .30/30 case through a window and 30 feet into the street. Both the NRA and SAAMI have conducted tests. Reported in the NRA Firearms Fact Book on pages 145-146 are one notable SAAMI test in which a "large quantity" of cartridge and shotshell ammunition was burned in a fire of oil soaked wood. The men conducting the test remained within 20 foot of the fire without injury. "The cartridges and shells exploded from time to time, but there was no general explosion or throwing off of bullets or shot to any distance." In a test done by the NRA rifle and pistol cartridges were cooked off on a hot plate underneath a corrugated cardboard box. "...neither fragments of the bullet cases nor the bullets penetrated the cardboard." The NRA concludes with this statement: "These tests and years of experience indicate that there is no appreciable hazard in storing any amount of loaded small arms ammunition in a dwelling." From my personal experience, I have burned off thousands of duds and bad reloads in backyard fires. I packed the ammunition into #10 cans and threw them in. I've never had anything exit the can. Telling the firemen about the stash when they respond is a prudent thing, but I wouldn't worry about their safety.
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I have no idea what caused this to happen either. It was the first and only time I ever saw something do this. However the fact that it did happen was enough to get my attention! LOL.
Link Posted: 12/16/2002 2:56:10 AM EDT
I'm actually more concerned about the cans Black and smokeless powders I have in there with my ammo. A can of BP can make a big BOOM!
Link Posted: 12/16/2002 8:51:57 AM EDT
I'd be more concerned about the firefighters that don't feel like entering your home because they saw too many movies that show ammo exploding a house. Since it is safe, I wouldn't tell them until after the fire is out, if at all.
Link Posted: 12/16/2002 12:19:08 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/20/2002 8:52:20 AM EDT
Troy - Does that go for pyrodex pellets too? I have a couple small boxes (100 pellets per box) of 50 grain pyrodex pellets stored in an ammo can. Is this an accident waiting to happen?
Link Posted: 12/20/2002 8:41:37 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/21/2002 4:48:41 AM EDT
I generally only have 2 or 3 cans of goex BP in my "safe" My safe is a big closet (solid wood door-old house) inside is a smaller safe (homak type, not fire rated) with guns in it. the powders, dies, bullets, etc are on shelves that are attached to the outside of the safe and the wall. If you have a lot of powder, Dixie Gun works sells containers designed for BP. They're big heavy metal boxes, designed to "give" if an explosion occurs. Most BP dealers use some sort of case like that. Troy: Thanks for the info- I used to keep my powder in ammo cans! They fit in there so nicely! I wonder how a powder horn acts in the same situation? I've seen a'lot of green re-enactors tending an open fire with a big Bomb (ie filled horn) hanging off their neck. We usually advise them not to, but if they refuse, we just stay away, and warn the others around them. I'm a big believer in Darwin...
Link Posted: 12/21/2002 9:02:51 PM EDT
I remember reading somewhere that the primer being blowed out of its pocket was more of a danger than the bullet exiting the mouth of the case, when the case was exposed to heat. That said, keeping ammo in ammo cans would contain errant primers, bullets, and case fragments during a fire. Also, the rubber seal on the can, I assume, would melt before any ammo would cook off, thereby not allowing any pressure to build up in the ammo can. Keeping ammo in a cheap safe, by itself should also work, since most cheap safes are anything but airtight. Keeping ammo safe from any heat exposure, so that it would not be compromised, could be done I suppose. Maybe a large metal container, with mutiple layers of foam and concrete, or for that matter a concrete bunker. Then again it would be cheaper to just replace the ammo than build the bunker, but having your own personal bunker would be super cool and make you the envy of all your friends.
Link Posted: 12/21/2002 9:31:01 PM EDT
When I was a teenager, my dad's garage burnt down. He had about 5 20mm ammo cans and several .30 and .50 cal cans fullof ammo and componets. I don't remember any cans being pierced by shrapnel or bullets. Some of the cans were bulged out, some so badly that the lids weren't fitting anymore. He didn't have any black powder. I think the 10 gallons of gas in the garage was alot worse than the powder and ammo. I have an article somewhere that compares gasoline vs. powder. It's amazing how much worse the gasoline is.
Link Posted: 12/21/2002 11:55:43 PM EDT
Link Posted: 12/22/2002 1:11:11 AM EDT
My father always told us kids ammo cooking off was not really dangerous. When we asked why he would tell us his story of being very close to the ammo dump at Iwo Jima when the Japanese blew it up THREE times and the last thing they were worried about was small arms ammunition.
Link Posted: 12/22/2002 6:38:55 AM EDT
For boxed ammo, I use a surplus mortor shell box. Put a latch and lock and loaded is heavier than my gun safe.
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