Ammo Cans
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Thread: Ammo Cans

  1. #1
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    Ammo Cans

    Another newb question, might be a dumb question, but I am going to ask anyway. Found a local ammo retailer that sells Remington 9mm in bulk of 1000 rounds for a good price. Only catch is it comes loose in ziplock bags. I leave the ammo in the ziplock so it has double the water and dirt protection.

    Anyone see a problem carrying loose ammo in an ammo can?

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    9mm ammo, probably not a problem.

    Pointed-FMJ-bullet rifle ammo? Well, if one of those pointed bullets gets lined-up on one of the primers, and you drop the can, things could get exciting. Probably not life-threatening, but maybe need-a-clean-pair-of-pants exciting. And (worst of all) some of the ammo might no longer be usable due to scorching/dents, etc.
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    Senior Member Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    Ammunition packaged in plastic bags: That sets off warning bells in my mind.
    To me, this means that they are inferior-quality reloads, ammunition with no provenance. Anybody could've reloaded the cases. Maybe even someone who wasn't paying strict attention to what he was doing.
    Each bagful could even have been reloaded by a different person. And from the buyer's perspective: No provenance, no control, nobody to sue when something catastrophic happens.

    There are companies which reload empty cases, and package the reloads in boxes clearly marked with a name and address.
    These people are proud of, and take responsibility for, their work.

    I strongly suggest that someone seeking to save some money either take up reloading for himself, or limit himself to buying boxed and labelled reloads.
    Don't buy bagged, unlabelled ammunition.
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    I'd be a little hesitant buying ammo "loosely packaged" in a ziploc bag.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ Niner View Post
    9mm ammo, probably not a problem.

    Pointed-FMJ-bullet rifle ammo? Well, if one of those pointed bullets gets lined-up on one of the primers, and you drop the can, things could get exciting. Probably not life-threatening, but maybe need-a-clean-pair-of-pants exciting. And (worst of all) some of the ammo might no longer be usable due to scorching/dents, etc.
    bought plenty of .556 in plastic boxes( from federal) never thought of your point. I use a plastic bag sometimes insid e the box just to keep those rounds tightly packed--great point great post.

    to the OP-- ammo in a plastic bag(as Steve points out in his post) is most likely reloaded . especially if they are suppose d to be from a known maker like winchester. I get mine in boxes from t hat company only..my preference solely

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    Ammunition packaged in plastic bags: That sets off warning bells in my mind.
    To me, this means that they are inferior-quality reloads, ammunition with no provenance. Anybody could've reloaded the cases. Maybe even someone who wasn't paying strict attention to what he was doing.
    Each bagful could even have been reloaded by a different person. And from the buyer's perspective: No provenance, no control, nobody to sue when something catastrophic happens.

    There are companies which reload empty cases, and package the reloads in boxes clearly marked with a name and address.
    These people are proud of, and take responsibility for, their work.

    I strongly suggest that someone seeking to save some money either take up reloading for himself, or limit himself to buying boxed and labelled reloads.
    Don't buy bagged, unlabelled ammunition.
    Answer the question, and Click the link

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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ Niner View Post
    9mm ammo, probably not a problem.
    1000 rounds - loose pack - 9mm Remington UMC 115 grain FMJ ammo - L9MM3BP

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    I buy the same box from cabelas . Never had an issue. I usually wait till I have some type of coupon as well. Before Christmas I was getting $25 off if you spend a hundred. They also have .45 ACP in a 500 round box that I will buy as well. They also have 40 S&W I would imagine it is just as good. If you can go to a cabelas you save shipping also sometimes they have free shipping offers.

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    Senior Member Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    OK, so about the question of carrying loose ammunition in a G.I. can...

    For the maybe 20 years of my competitive life, I always carried my practice ammunition loose in a G.I. 30-caliber can.
    I never had a problem with the ammunition or the carry mode.
    However, when competing I carried my carefully-loaded match ammunition in MTM plastic boxes, within the G.I. can, so it wouldn't get dinged up in transit.

    I subdivided my 30-caliber can into two compartments, using a piece of scrap aluminum and some screws. The left-hand compartment was for loaded ammunition, and the right-hand one was for reloadable empties, in a plastic bag so the dirt picked up with the cases wouldn't get into the ready-to-use stuff.
    I also carried extra ear plugs in the left-hand compartment, and, when there was room enough, my earmuffs too. (I was wearing my shooting glasses, as I normally did all day, every day.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by rustygun View Post
    I buy the same box from cabelas . Never had an issue. I usually wait till I have some type of coupon as well. Before Christmas I was getting $25 off if you spend a hundred. They also have .45 ACP in a 500 round box that I will buy as well. They also have 40 S&W I would imagine it is just as good. If you can go to a cabelas you save shipping also sometimes they have free shipping offers.
    Yes I have seen the same product at Cabellas, and I did my homework before buying. I ordered my On-Line from SG Ammo out of Stillwater OK, and I live north of Dallas so Stillwater is not but 170 miles away straight up I-35, so 2nd day UPS is cheap. SG Ammo list price is less than Cabella's and once you add on sales tax to Cabells's local store SG with shipping is less Net total price. Now if on sale and a $25 off coupon changes things.

    FWIW to the other readers, the Loose Ammo is Not Reloads, it is factory Remington sold loose in a no thrills carboard box inside a plastic bag. Same stuff you get in a bright colored White/Green Remington box with plastic shell holders. You save roughly 3 to 4-cents per round. That adds up when buying 1000 rounds.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve M1911A1 View Post
    OK, so about the question of carrying loose ammunition in a G.I. can...

    For the maybe 20 years of my competitive life, I always carried my practice ammunition loose in a G.I. 30-caliber can.
    I never had a problem with the ammunition or the carry mode.
    However, when competing I carried my carefully-loaded match ammunition in MTM plastic boxes, within the G.I. can, so it wouldn't get dinged up in transit.

    I subdivided my 30-caliber can into two compartments, using a piece of scrap aluminum and some screws. The left-hand compartment was for loaded ammunition, and the right-hand one was for reloadable empties, in a plastic bag so the dirt picked up with the cases wouldn't get into the ready-to-use stuff.
    I also carried extra ear plugs in the left-hand compartment, and, when there was room enough, my earmuffs too. (I was wearing my shooting glasses, as I normally did all day, every day.)
    Thank you, now that is an answer. Since I do not shoot competitively, I am not worried about anything getting dinged up. I only need two types of ammo; Practice & Self Defense. I buy inexpensive good quality Practice ammo, and top of the line Self Defense ammo. God willing, I will never have to use the Self Defense ammo except for the few rounds I have shot to become familiar with it. 50 round box of that is more than enough.

    Bottom line is I just want to know if it is safe or not to carry loose. For added moisture and dirt protection I keep it in the Zip-Lock bag inside the sealed ammo can

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    Throw some desiccant bags in there to absorb any moisture too. I store most of my ammo in 30 cal plastic cans. No issues here.

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    Quote Originally Posted by TAPnRACK View Post
    Throw some desiccant bags in there to absorb any moisture too. I store most of my ammo in 30 cal plastic cans. No issues here.
    Thanks already ahead of you.

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    Greetings to all.....just curious if I AM the ONLY one with this issue. Back in 1992, 1993, 1994, I purchase several boxes of Remington UMC (Yellow boxes) 45 acp ammo. I sealed them in ammo cans until recently. I opened several boxes and I see that there are an average of 20-25 rounds PER 50 round box, with hairline cracks in the cases. I have never seen this before. Now be reminded, this is NOT reloaded ammo, it's NEVER been out of the box before. Did Remington have a problem during that time period?? I have been reloading for over 25 years and I am EXTREMELY careful of case inspection during the process......so...can I actually shoot this stuff??? I know that this ammo if used is a one time deal but I sure hate to just toss it....
    Thanks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Heckler View Post
    Greetings to all.....just curious if I AM the ONLY one with this issue. Back in 1992, 1993, 1994, I purchase several boxes of Remington UMC (Yellow boxes) 45 acp ammo. I sealed them in ammo cans until recently. I opened several boxes and I see that there are an average of 20-25 rounds PER 50 round box, with hairline cracks in the cases. I have never seen this before. Now be reminded, this is NOT reloaded ammo, it's NEVER been out of the box before. Did Remington have a problem during that time period?? I have been reloading for over 25 years and I am EXTREMELY careful of case inspection during the process......so...can I actually shoot this stuff??? I know that this ammo if used is a one time deal but I sure hate to just toss it....
    Thanks.
    I can't say why those cracks showed up, but I do know that as long as your .45 ACP ammunition is not +P, or +P+, it is safe to fire it in any issue-grade M1911.

    You may have to discard the empties, rather than reload them...but, then again, maybe not.

    I have always reloaded and used cracked .45 cases among my practice ammunition. You'd be shocked to see what I comfortably use!
    If the case will retain a bullet properly, I'll use it for practice. No worries, mate.

    The .45 cartridge is low-pressure, low-velocity, low-stress. As long as the case doesn't contain a double charge, you'll be OK.

    (BTW: I use 230-grain RN and 200-grain SWC lead bullets, both over six grains of WW 231, with any available large-pistol primer. I full-length resize, bell very slightly for the bullet, and then taper-crimp all cases, including the cracked ones. Note that I do not necessarily recommend that you use this load formula: I present it here only as an example.)

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    Heckler, did you buy the ammo new, from a store or other retailer, or did you buy it from an individual in a private sale?

    Steve, if the cracks are caused by what I am thinking, then the ammo is probably NOT safe to fire.

  18. #17
    Senior Member Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DJ Niner View Post
    ...Steve, if the cracks are caused by what I am thinking, then the ammo is probably NOT safe to fire.
    Please explain.

    Could the cases be cracked from powder deterioration?
    It seems to me that the ammunition is too "new" for that kind of deterioration to have taken place.
    Did Remington/UMC load a batch of cartridges with bad powder, that prematurely deteriorated?

    Please teach me about something that I guess I don't know.

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    if I get bulk ammo not in boxes, I try to save some boxes and holder of that caliber from other suppliers (as I buy other brands of ammo) and reuse them-- better to be safe-- we are talking explosives here

  20. #19
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    Steve, I've seen brand-new factory ammo (bottle-necked rifle) with case-neck splits that ran one-third- to one-half-way down the case body after firing, and straight-wall pistol ammo with the same problem, and both were caused by the ammo being improperly stored near ammonia-based chemicals/vapors at some point in time.

    Cracks of this type are serious enough to reduce case-neck tension to near zero before the round is fired, allowing a bullet to slide back into the case during feeding/chambering, which can raise pressures to unsafe levels on firing.

    Investigation of the cases I had personal knowledge of, revealed the rifle ammo was stored on a shelf in an indoor storage closet which was also used to store house cleaning supplies and used cleaning rags. The pistol rounds were kept in a metal locker in the garage, also used to store general house/garage/car cleaning supplies and used rags. In both cases, there were ammonia-based cleaners and dirty rags with the same in the storage locations that filled the storage locations with vapors, and over many years, these ammonia vapors affected the brass cartridge cases, making them very brittle. It was so bad that every round fired split and directed gas/smoke into the firearms actions, and when we examined the remaining ammo, we even found some rounds with serious case-neck splits BEFORE they were fired, apparently caused by the case-neck tension on the bullet causing the now-brittle brass to crack just due to normal handling or transportation jostling. Some folks thought that heat and humidity could have also played a part in the brass becoming brittle, as the indoor storage location also housed the house's hot water heater (electric), and the garage was not climate controlled and heated-up/cooled-off with the outside temperature and the seasons. All in all, pretty horrible conditions for long-term ammo storage.

    Most ammo shippers/retailers know better that to store ammo near any chemicals, but gun owners are not necessarily knowledgeable on this point. In the cases I was familiar with, the rifle owner was only an occasional hunter, and the cracked ammo had been bought "on sale" and stockpiled in storage for 8-10 years, just in the cardboard boxes. The pistol ammo was about the same age or older, and had been bought from another owner who had sold all his guns in that caliber. The new owner of the ammo was a new-to-guns gun owner, and although he locked-up the gun, was concerned about his kids finding the extra ammo, so he hid it in the garage chemical storage cabinet, also left in the original cardboard boxes. In both cases, you could still smell a slight ammonia odor in the ammo box if it was recently opened and you stuck your nose in it and sniffed, which is what put us on-track to solving the mystery (one of my range co-workers noticed the smell).

    Although the ammo was factory ammo, that's why I asked Heckler if he bought it from a person. If so, it might have been stored improperly in the past, which could have caused his problem. It's a pretty rare thing, most folks have never seen or heard of it happening even once. I've been "lucky" enough to see examples of the problem twice, and voluntarily got involved in the investigation of what/why it happened to satisfy my curiosity as a gun owner who also stashes a box of ammo away for the future, every now and then. I didn't want the same thing to happen to my stored ammo, so I had to find out what caused it for my own peace of mind.

    When you work on a military range, and open it up for non-military use every other weekend or so, you see a lot of weird stuff like this. It's an interesting learning environment that most folks never get to experience. If you like learning from other folks' mistakes, it can be a gold mine.

    See also:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Season_cracking
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    Senior Member Steve M1911A1's Avatar
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    DJ Niner;
    Thanks!
    I'd heard of embrittlement before, specifically from long-term exposure to chemicals, but I didn't remember exactly which chemicals and conditions.
    I guess that I operate with the assumption that most shooters know about good storage techniques. But as we all know, "assumption makes an ass out of u and me." (Evidently, mostly me.)
    And now that you mention it, in the far back recesses of my embrittled memory is an age-crumbling Post-It note reminding me that I have seen embrittled cases caused by nothing more than the deterioration of the powder contained within them. (That, too, was probably caused by ammonia, I guess.)

    I'm never to old to learn...or to have my memory jostled.

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