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Posted: 3/6/2006 1:46:34 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/6/2006 1:49:02 PM EDT by Firelotus]
Guy in a gun shop told me 1 yr, but I think he was blowing it out his arse so I'd buy more overpriced ammo from him. I wanted to know the real deal from the boards here on how long does it take for ammo to become unsafe for usage or use at all? My guess would be over a couple of years at least before the primer wears (or what ever it would do to cause it to become less active) Wanted to get everyone's opinion. Thanks Guys

Note: No, I will not send any of my ammo to anyone for long term testing.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 1:47:34 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/6/2006 1:50:14 PM EDT by gus]
Decades.

Many decades for military ammo.

ETA: Even when it gets kinda old (decades) it usually only loses a little power. It's not like it becomes an explosion hazard or anything like that.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 2:01:48 PM EDT
Sealed Military ammo will last a long time if taken care of. I just tried to shoot some 10mm PMC the other day in a Gock I bought in the 80's. I have not shot the gun in a few years but never had any problems with it. Alot of the ammo malfunctioned. There were misfires as well as jams. I attribute it to the ammo which was over 10 years old.
JRandyH
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 2:09:41 PM EDT
87 years, depending on storage methods.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 2:12:43 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/6/2006 2:13:14 PM EDT by gus]
That's very true - storage conditions are important. Stored in a bad environment, I can see how commercial ammo would be bad after 10 years. Sealed military ammo would outlast it, but both benefit greatly from a litttle climate control.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 2:39:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/6/2006 2:44:20 PM EDT by jaymeister99]

Originally Posted By Firelotus:
Guy in a gun shop told me 1 yr, but I think he was blowing it out his arse so I'd buy more overpriced ammo from him. I wanted to know the real deal from the boards here on how long does it take for ammo to become unsafe for usage or use at all? My guess would be over a couple of years at least before the primer wears (or what ever it would do to cause it to become less active) Wanted to get everyone's opinion. Thanks Guys

Note: No, I will not send any of my ammo to anyone for long term testing.



It takes at least 60+ years if stored right. Even if it isnt stored in ideal conditions its usually fine. But store it in an ammo box with some dessicant and it will last a lifetime.

I had used some 1950s dated 30-06 found in a damp crawl space on Long Island. It was in a bag that had the '68 Nixon election on it, so apparently it had been there for over 30 years. It shoots fine. So IMO even ammo stored in less than ideal conditions works ok. 8mm ammo from WW2 pops up that is now 60+ years old, and it still works. I tried some 1944 dated German 8mm a few years ago.

The guy telling you one year is 100% full of , get yourself one of these next time you talk to him:


Link Posted: 3/6/2006 2:46:10 PM EDT
^^ ^^
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 2:46:15 PM EDT
I've shot 20+ [probably 25+] year old reloaded ammo stored in less then ideal storage and tho I tossed the ones who cases had corroded, every one I fired went bang just fine. If it looks good it IS probably good.

I don't worry in the least anymore, heck the Military is using WW2 ammo in Iraq and it works fine. [fiddy cal] I have USGI Match Ball .45 acp ammo fron the mid 60s and it is just as accurate and reliable [probably more so] then new stuff on the market today.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 3:01:59 PM EDT

Considering that WWII corrosive primer ammo is still reliable, It's a safe bet that your ammo will out last you.

Unless you store it outside in the sun, rain and snow, which would cut down it's useful life to a few years.

Link Posted: 3/6/2006 3:13:20 PM EDT
Store it in a cool, dry environment and it will last longer than you do, if you die when you're supposed to.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 4:02:45 PM EDT
I have 8x56R ammo from 1938 for my Steyr M95 and it has gone bang every time I have pulled the trigger.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 4:18:56 PM EDT
I have some 17 year old reload for pistol and rifle, that has been through three cross country moves.
Still shoots good and accurate enogh to kill deer.
Alway been in stored in a box inside the house.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 4:24:23 PM EDT
I had some ammo that was pretty old. at least a couple of decades. I got it from a friend and kept it for about 5 or 7 yrs. I gave it to a friend at work and he said it all fired perfectly and was very accurate. It was some 30-06 and 243 and some other stuff. It didn't look sealed it had just been kept in a stable environment.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 4:24:40 PM EDT
I have fired amoo manufactured in the 40s without a problem. Had some Czech 9mm with 1948-1954 head stanps all went bang, no duds.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 4:35:00 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Firelotus:
Guy in a gun shop told me 1 yr, but I think he was blowing it out his arse so I'd buy more overpriced ammo from him. I wanted to know the real deal from the boards here on how long does it take for ammo to become unsafe for usage or use at all? My guess would be over a couple of years at least before the primer wears (or what ever it would do to cause it to become less active) Wanted to get everyone's opinion. Thanks Guys

Note: No, I will not send any of my ammo to anyone for long term testing.




You have 2300 posts and you dont know the answer to this?

Methinks you should talk a little less, and listen a little more.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 4:39:59 PM EDT
I was shooting some 30+ year old .22 ammo the other day. My rifle went bang every time I pulled the trigger.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 6:44:35 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/6/2006 6:49:40 PM EDT by tonybelding]
My estimate: 60 years.

Unless it was packed and stored in Guatemala. heard
A collector was hosting a dinner party at his home, when one of the guests paused to admire his ancient wheel-lock musket. They couldn't quite figure out how it worked, so the host decided to demonstrate the mechanism. He primed the pan, wound up the clockwork, and let it fly. Wheel spun, sparks flew, priming powder flared as expected. Then the centuries-old charge of powder in the chamber went off and blasted a centuries-old lead ball through his window.

"Oops! I didn't know it was loaded." hock.gif
Link Posted: 3/7/2006 5:53:02 AM EDT
I have fired lots of WW2 and post WW2 surplus from my Kar-98k with no problems.

*EXCEPT*
Turkish 8mm - lots of FTF and wait-a-sec rounds in that stuff

Scary Stuff
Link Posted: 3/7/2006 7:05:31 AM EDT
The youngest ammo that I've ever had age-related issues with was made in the 60's.
Link Posted: 3/7/2006 7:11:06 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/7/2006 12:22:40 PM EDT by jaymeister99]
I remember somebody posting on here who claimed he was at the range next to an old timer with 30-06 dated 1918 ammo! Said it shot great through the guys rifle!

At the time it made this ammo 85+ years old!
Link Posted: 3/7/2006 7:19:20 AM EDT
In my view ammo life is indefinite.

For survival purposes, I'll keep fresh stuff around.

But for range use, as long as not corrosive, I'll shoot any ammo no matter how old.
Link Posted: 3/7/2006 7:25:14 AM EDT
When it's moldy and/or clumps up and smells funny... oh wait that's food.

I didn't know there was. As long as you store is properly I would think your ammo will last longer than you.
Link Posted: 3/7/2006 7:42:54 AM EDT

Originally Posted By HBruns:
87 years, depending on storage methods.



87 hours for this guy.
Link Posted: 3/7/2006 12:09:52 PM EDT
It's good for about 2 weeks.... maybe 3...
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