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Old 06-17-2011, 11:17 PM
mjp28 mjp28 is offline
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Default AMMO QUESTION for all you gun gurus:

AMMO QUESTION for all you gun gurus:

How long is ammo safe and reliable?

I remember as a kid firing very old .22 cal rimfire bullets I found out in our barn. I guess some were about 50 years old. They were dusty and even the copper heads needed cleaned up before I put them in my dad's old single shot rifle. Some didn't fire on first try -BUT- I think that may have been due to a very worn firing pin.

I have some .38 specials that might be 40 years old, same with .22 LR rimfire, .25 centerfire, some slightly newer .22 MAGS and some old 20 ga. shotgun shells.

These all were put way back on a shelf and escaped my blowing them all off.

Would you stick 40+ year old ammo in a revolver? Comments please?
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Old 06-18-2011, 12:16 AM
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I would, as long as it looked like it was in good shape.
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Old 06-18-2011, 01:20 AM
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Rockwolf66 Rockwolf66 is offline
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My dad is a collector of WWII rifles and I've used period ammo in period guns. Basically as long as they are not corroded you can use ammo. Durring 1972 an SAS member restored a Nordfelt gun in .45 Martini-Henry. They found a batch of ammo from 1890 and needed something to use up the ammo so they restored the gun as a idle project. Not all the ammo worked but most of it did fire. Basically it was a problem of a gun designed for solid brass cases being fed rolled cases.
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Old 06-19-2011, 05:06 PM
FIVETWOSEVEN FIVETWOSEVEN is offline
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I have some literally ancient .32 S&W short in my locker that must be over 100 years old and it still fires reliably.
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Old 06-20-2011, 12:26 AM
Nyles Nyles is offline
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As long as it's been stored properly it should be fine, I've shot ammo from the 20s without incident. The primer in rimfire ammo tends to degrade more than in a centerfire, but even then the most unsafe thing that would happen would be a hangfire, mostly you'd just get duds. Be aware of the possibility of a hangfire and react accordingly and you'll be fine.

That said, if you are going to clean it up, don't use a tumbler. It seems obvious, but working at Cabela's you'd be amazed at the questions I get.
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:28 PM
FIVETWOSEVEN FIVETWOSEVEN is offline
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With .22 rimfire, I've noticed that some brands don't fire reliably even brand new.
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Old 06-22-2011, 08:26 PM
mjp28 mjp28 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nyles View Post
As long as it's been stored properly it should be fine, I've shot ammo from the 20s without incident. The primer in rimfire ammo tends to degrade more than in a centerfire, but even then the most unsafe thing that would happen would be a hangfire, mostly you'd just get duds. Be aware of the possibility of a hangfire and react accordingly and you'll be fine.[/b]
That's one thing I was thinking about, in .22 I think they're all rimfire, the rest are all centerfire.

Quote:
That said, if you are going to clean it up, don't use a tumbler. It seems obvious, but working at Cabela's you'd be amazed at the questions I get.
I have several .22 tumblers and one Winchester .22 rifle with the tube feed, the most I'd get would be a stuck shell I could eject.

The rest are centerfire, plus the shotgun shells, no problem there.
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Old 06-30-2011, 04:14 PM
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When I first got my hands on my grandfather's Taurus PT92 and S&W 4506, he provided me with lots of ammo that he'd never used. Much of it was purchased 10-15 years ago. That's the oldest ammo I've ever shot.
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