Ammunition Storage

Discussion in 'Firearms' started by ntech, Jul 9, 2007.

  1. ntech

    ntech Member

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    I have 3 boxes of Federal .40 hollow point rounds I keep in my home for self defense. I anticipate this ammo to be stored for a long time (hopefully) in a safe.

    First of all, how long can ammunition be stored and still be considered worthy?

    Secondly, is it acceptable to keep two Glock 22 15 round clips loaded indefinitely? Will it wear the spring? Will the pressure of the clip spring be detrimental to the bullets over time? I am talking years here.
     
  2. foshizzle

    foshizzle New Member

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    Modern ammo should last forever, basically. I routinely shoot stuff from the 30's from my Mosin and I've never had a problem. Keep it at reasonable temperatures and don't get oil in the primer i.e. keep it in the box.
     

  3. ptsmith24

    ptsmith24 New Member

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    +1 on the box. I assume it's cool and dry in the near your safe anyway. I invested in a few ammo cans to store my stuff. I wouldn't worry about the magazines, but if you are it wouldn't matter if you unloaded the mags and reloaded them or unload the SD ammo and reload practice ammo and use it at the range to make sure it all cycles properly.
     
  4. Mafuta54

    Mafuta54 Active Member

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    I have some 7.92X57 reloads that my father loaded more than 40 years ago that still go boom everytime I pull the trigger!
     
  5. USMC - Retired

    USMC - Retired Active Member

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    Get some gov surplus ammo cans and be sure to drop some desacant packs in to keep everthing nice and dry. Wouldn't keep magazines loaded myself...
     
  6. Rammstein

    Rammstein New Member

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    There is nothing wrong with keeping magazines loaded. It is the working of the spring that shortens the life.

    I don't have time to go into the technical side of it right now, but suffice it to say that you do more damage (near negligible) to your magazine spring when you use it at the range then you would if you let it sit loaded in the safe for 100 years.
     
  7. Thorsen

    Thorsen New Member

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    To second Ramm on this, it is an old wive's tale (or old shooter's tale, take your pick) that keeping magazines loaded reduces their reliability. As long as your magazines, like your weapon itself, are not exposed to moisture, therefore rust, they should work as intended. Just keep in mind that when you clean your firearm you should also clean your magazines and you are good to go.
     
  8. CoolHand

    CoolHand Active Member

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    Leaving a mag loaded will weaken the spring. I've got 2 pre 1994 ban Glock 17 mags that I had left loaded and forgot about in 1995. I found them when I was cleaning out some old moving boxes about 6 months ago. Neither one would feed reliably til I replaced the old springs. Both of these mags have less than 500 rounds through them since new. They had been 100% reliable before they were packed up for moving.

    I have always been taught to rotate my loaded mags every month. That training came from folks with decades of real world experience in the Marine Corps and law enforcement.

    YMMV. It's your life that's gonna depend on wether the weapon goes BANG! CLICK :cry: or BANG! BANG! BANG! etc... :D

    edited to add: These are OEM glock mags. The old springs were not rusted or dirty at all.
     
  9. ber950

    ber950 Active Member

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    :-k My revolver doesn't have that problem. :D
     
  10. ptsmith24

    ptsmith24 New Member

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    It must be defective. I'll give you $8 in quarters for it.
     
  11. Rammstein

    Rammstein New Member

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    Ok...the science behind it.

    Springs made of good metal are designed to withstand the tension from a specific range of motion. Firearms engineers know and understand this concept and have designed their magazines to be able to reliably function through this range of motion.

    Point X is minimal compression; that is, the point where the only tension on the spring is the resistance from the follower pushing on the feed lips of the magazine. Point Y [fatigue limit] is near maximum compression; that is, the point where the magazine is loaded to full capacity. Point Y+1 is when the spring is stressed passed its structural limitations. When this happens the atoms in the metals shift and the lattice changes. When the lattice changes, any imperfections in the metal becomes more pronounced.

    Magazine springs using quality metal will have less imperfections, thus they will be harder to deform.
     
  12. ntech

    ntech Member

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    Would that include Glock 22 15 round stock magazines by any chance?
     
  13. Rammstein

    Rammstein New Member

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    Yes.
     
  14. Macktee

    Macktee New Member

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    As far as storage is concerned, ammo is not something that reacts well to fire and/or heat... Consequently, it should be stored in a fire-resistant environment.

    A few years ago, I built a paint locker to store oil based paint safely should the house ever catch fire.

    I knocked together a frame of 2x4s and covered it with fire-resistant sheet rock, which is available at HD, Lowe's, etc. The cabinet is 2' wide x 3' deep x 3-1/2' high with a drop-down front door hinged at the top and a couple of interior shelves.

    Each layer of the sheet rock is supposed to be good for a half hour at 1200 or 1400 degrees, so two layers should give me about an hour's worth of protection. Hopefully plenty of time for the fire dept. to arrive!

    I store paint, wax, oils and ammo in it. Pretty simple design that anyone could duplicate or reinvent in a design of their own.