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October 23, 2006

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Ammo Shortage: Panic Now! Beat the Rush!

In case you haven’t noticed, the price of ammunition has been rising slowly, and it is not about to stop. Not by a durn sight. The reason is that the prices of the metals that go into almost all ammo—lead, copper, and zinc—have risen exponentially. Here are some examples:

In 45 days this year, the price of lead went up 31 percent.
In one day this year, the price of copper went up 7 percent.
The prices of lead, zinc, and copper have gone up 300 percent in the last three years.

There are a couple of reasons for this: China and India are now manufacturing stuff that requires the three metals, and they want their share. And, as with oil refineries, there are only so many smelters that can transform ore into metal.

So if you think that ammo and components are expensive now (actually, they aren’t), YOU AIN’T SEEN NOTHIN’ YET!  And if that isn’t depressing enough, consider this: It seems highly likely that the Democrats will regain control of Congress in November, and it is also probable that Hillary will run for President. And when that happens, you will see a wave of panic-buying of firearms and ammunition that will beggar the imagination.

And so: Beat the rush and begin hoarding now. And remember that you read it here first.

(On a somewhat brighter note: A young West Virginia lady named Hannah whom I know went to see the moronic movie Open Season. Her reaction to it was that if bears were as dumb as the one in the cartoon, she wanted to go bear hunting.)

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Comments

Ralph the Rifleman

Althought we have raised our prices slightly in the store, we still have sales on most of the popular calibers(9mm,.45ACP,.40S&W, and a number of rifle calibers to mention a few) and Remington Arms currently has a $5 per box, 2 box max, rebate in effect thru 12/06.
Check out Dick's sporting goods. I am sure our prices are reasonable by market standards. Seems like reloading is making better sense, now more then ever.

Mike Diehl

The price changes do not seem to me to have much to do with the raw material costs. A dollar a shot for, say .30-06 cartridges is pretty common. I doubt that more than a nickel of that is accounted for by component metals.

Price is probably being driven more by limited production lines (sounds silly when we're talking about hundreds of millions or billions of rounds per year), many different kinds of cartridges in production (so scale effect for some rounds is not making prices drop), and market demand for production lines dedicated to the .223 round (for obvious reasons).

JA Demko

...and don't forget, if we all rush out to panic buy now, the additional demand will drive the price up still higher so we can pay even more! Win-win situation any way you look at it!

Matt

Well, I will certainly be rechecking my ammo stockpile. By the way Dave, the chances the Dems will retake the Senate are very slim. They have to pick up six seats in order to do so. Actually, its more like pick up seven since they are assured of loosing Conneticut to an independent Joe Libermann. If they do retake the House, things there would be just as gridlocked as they are now. Having Hitlery win the White House (as unlikely as that is) is enough to give me the cold sweets, though.

craig j. curtis

i was shopping a small store just today and noticed prices were higher than last season . but my reloads are shrinking my groups anyway. the price increase was just minimal a couple dollars for premiuim winch.and fed. and as of this weekend hillary has some competition ,and if i know this country like i think i do he has got her nervous. split the party please and everybody vote this year so we dont lose those seats in the house !!!!!!

Wayne Husted

This begs the question: How long can we store ammo before it goes 'stale?' For instance, if I run down to the the local Dick's and take advantage of their appx. $29.00/flat (3 dram 1 1/8 oz. 12 gauge) sale prices, do I need to refrigerate my booty? -grinning-

MattWV

My brother noticed this weekend that at Wal-Mart the price of a box of .243 Core-Lokts went up about $4 from last year and the Winchester Supreme BTs went from $20 to $26. The 7mm Accubonds I buy for reloading have went from $15.50 to $18 and with me being but a poor college student I fear that I may not be able to afford them before long. Thankfully I ran into one of those deals where something is too cheap to pass up but you'll never have a use for it and grabbed two boxes each of Partition Golds in .30 and 7mm for a scant $8 a box. I guess I can always load them and shoot multiple deer at once, thus saving even more money.

Mike Shickele

Dave
Tell Hannah they're even dumber in real life, that gophers are cannibalistic, and that bucks attempt to stab each other as so they are the only ones with a chance at the does.

As for hoarding; inflation causes everything to go up, and so does supply and demand. When a large portion of a population attempts to hoard, supply goes down, and demand goes up. To suggest that there will be a shortage is a self fulfilling prophesy, if others believe you.

Mike

 tom

Dave,

I guess I will have to stock up on some bullets. I have a quick question? What would the lightest bullet for the 300 win mag be that would shoot flat and accurate? I have heard a few schools of thought and maybe I just need to buy a bunch to find out for myself.

I would like to go with a Nosler bullet. The only bullets I have shot now out of my 300 Win Mag are in the 200 and 220 grain weights. I want to go much lighter, possibly 165-175 grain.

I have talked to a few local experts (remember I live 10 miles from NYC). Some people have stated the 168/170 grain is the most accurate. Others have stated the 220 grain bullet is the most accurate. I am looking to make a load for small to medium sized game.

Do you have a recommendation for a starting point?

 tom

Dave,

I guess I will have to stock up on some bullets. I have a quick question? What would the lightest bullet for the 300 win mag be that would shoot flat and accurate? I have heard a few schools of thought and maybe I just need to buy a bunch to find out for myself.

I would like to go with a Nosler bullet. The only bullets I have shot now out of my 300 Win Mag are in the 200 and 220 grain weights. I want to go much lighter, possibly 165-175 grain.

I have talked to a few local experts (remember I live 10 miles from NYC). Some people have stated the 168/170 grain is the most accurate. Others have stated the 220 grain bullet is the most accurate. I am looking to make a load for small to medium sized game.

Do you have a recommendation for a starting point?

 tom

Dave,

I guess I will have to stock up on some bullets. I have a quick question? What would the lightest bullet for the 300 win mag be that would shoot flat and accurate? I have heard a few schools of thought and maybe I just need to buy a bunch to find out for myself.

I would like to go with a Nosler bullet. The only bullets I have shot now out of my 300 Win Mag are in the 200 and 220 grain weights. I want to go much lighter, possibly 165-175 grain.

I have talked to a few local experts (remember I live 10 miles from NYC). Some people have stated the 168/170 grain is the most accurate. Others have stated the 220 grain bullet is the most accurate. I am looking to make a load for small to medium sized game.

Do you have a recommendation for a starting point?

tom

I have no idea why that posted three times........

ford

Now I know we should have bought the ten-box case of .270 130-grain Core-Lokts at Gander Mtn.

Also, a question about Core-Lokts. I recently shot a deer from a quartering away position at about 90 yards with the above metioned bullets. The bullet entered about a foot in front of the hind leg and traveled diagonally through the deer and was stopped by a front rib without damaging it, leaving no blood trail. Does this make sense for a 130 grain?
(And this was during a special early season, not poaching.)

ford

I found the deer and it is currently being processed.

aguiterman

Tom - i use hornady 165 BTSP for my 300 win mag and my groupings are about a 3/4" @ 200 yds.

Dan

Bullets do funny things when striking flesh and bone.....and flesh and bone do funny things when hit by a bullet. I shot a deer at 120 yards that was quartering slightly away, with a .30-06, 180 gr. Core-Lokts. After blowing up a rib and passing through the lungs and exiting the far side, there wasn't a drop of blood to be found. The bone splinters peppered the heart, lungs and liver. The deer went 30 yrds. The bullet stayed together, but it didn't expand correctly after hitting that rib. I base this on the size of the exit wound. Found the deer though after a little looking. When I cut it open, it was like a 5 gallon bucket of blood got dumped out, it bleed completely internally.

Mike Shickele

Ford
As the fellow below you pointed out, that does make sense.
If a bullet only produces a small entrance wound, and no exit wound, through muscle, there might not be any bloodtrail.
muscle tends to seal up on smallish wounds such as bullet holes, though the damage beyond can be massive.
even if the bullet expands normally, hitting bone creates massive damage.
I once hit a deer in the clavicle, and bone fragmentation destroyed the entire shoulder, not the bullet.
Incidentally; I have never used the Core-lokt bullet, but it has a very good reputation.

Mike

Ralph the Rifleman

..a Remington rep once told me that, in his opinion of course, the Core-lokt bullet would probably meet 95% of the average hunter's needs, but even 5% of the market is worth making something the shooters are willing to buy because it's all about the market share. Bullets are a competive business. I would agree with him, and extend that logic to Winchester's silver tip bullet. If I had to choose only one premimum bullet, however: it would probably be the Nosler partition. It may not be the most accurate, but very respected on the target range, it has always taken game cleanly for me.

tom

Ralph,

I have killed every one of my big game animals with the Partition. I do not plan to make any changes in the bullet choice. The longest search for an animal after shooting it was 30 yards, that doe was tough........

I am just curious about weight.
tom

Ralph the Rifleman

I here ya Tom, and I think the "all around" weight for the .300 Mag(.308 bullet)if I were hunting in Bear country would be the 180 grain, and the 165 grain would get my vote as the next all around winner. BUT lets wait to see what our gun Guru has to say about it...

tom

Ralph,

The theory about the 165 grain bullet is that the larger 300 win mag capacity may push it too fast and it may not be as accurate, as a 180 gn bullet. I could go out and buy a range of bullets and see what my gun likes, but there is a handfull of "experts" that may have already done this research. This may save some time and headache in reloading.

Ralph the Rifleman

I helped a friend load-up his 300WM a few years back, in 165 grain, but for the life of me I cannot remember the powder type or grain wt? You are correct,however; in saying one needs to find the load that fit's their rifle, right.
BTW-Good Hunting once you find that load!

Mike Shickele

Ralph
I agree with you that the Partition is a good bullet; I'd be an idiot not to. The partition has proven itself anywhere there are animals to be hunted.
My personal choice is the Hornady Interloc. It is a very reliable bullet as well, also, it is very accurate, and inexpensive enough that I can afford to buy 8-10 boxes per gun to shoot every year.
My own personal take on magnums (cartridges that hold more powder than the norm) is that they only start to really shine with the heavier bullets.
as an example (I won't quote ballistics, look them up if you wish), the 7mm-08 does well with 140gr bullets (others are too long for the short actions anyways), the 280REM does well with the 160gr. bullets, and the 7mm REM MAG is at it's best with 175 gr bullets.

Mike

craig j. curtis

ford im curious as to why you want to use a lighter bullet in your 300? we all know it will shoot flatter and with a little more velocity . but i dont think your 200 gr. and or ect. would be that damaging to deer size game ? i use this wheight out of my handguns obviously flying slower than your 300 but with good results ! it seems to me that those lighter bullets would be screamin out of a 300 and be a little harsh for the barrel? im hoping the gun guru lets us know ive been eye balling a nice 300 mag and im curious as well what you can do with different bullet configurations! and weights. as far as nosler partition bullets are concerned ive never found a better bullet for my 270 hands down and ive tried them all !! oh and ralph how bout those TIGERS !!

craig j. curtis

oops this was for tom not ford !!




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