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Massad Ayoob on Guns

Want to Comment on a blog post? Look for and click on the blue No Comments or # Comments at the end of each post.



Massad Ayoob

GUN AND AMMO SHORTAGE COMING?

Friday, April 6th, 2012

We’ve all heard that amusingly hypocritical line, “Lay in a big supply before the hoarders get it all!”  Indeed, we shooters all lived through that in 2008 and for a good time after.  People who feared the Obama administration would make good on the new President’s previously declared wishes to ban assault rifles bought up every AR15 and AK47 clone in sight, and ammo was so scarce people were waiting in line to buy the six measly boxes that WalMart allowed per customer.  Some of those folks in line were gun dealers, who took the six boxes back to their own shops to sell for inflated prices.

Whether you call yourself a survivalist, a prepper, or simply self-reliant, it makes sense to “buy it cheap and stack it deep” when it’s something you need, like food or medicine.  At least in terms of ammo, it’s too late to “buy it cheap,” but since I need a continuing supply of ammunition for training and match shooting, I’m stacking it deep right now myself.  The rumor mill whispers of coming shortages, due partly to the strongly-grounded perception that the Obama administration’s anti-gun leanings will come out of the closet once he’s re-elected. There are also certain other market factors.  Foreign countries fearful of the second term President pulling US troops out of their countries are rumored to be ordering small arms ammo in large quantities from US manufacturers, who have a finite production capacity.

Much has been made of Homeland Security’s recent contract with ATK for 450 million rounds of Federal HST 180 grain hollow point ammo, caliber .40 Smith & Wesson.  I don’t see that as a harbinger of martial law and civil war as some do. Being in law enforcement myself, I’ve seen the severe shortages that have plagued even police agencies in the last several years.  The contract is for up to all those millions of cartridges, and may mean nothing more malignant than that a huge government agency wants a contractual guarantee that they’ll be able to get enough to train and qualify their people, even if their actual deliveries never come close to the top level to which that contract holds the manufacturer.

If you’re a reloader, stock up on components, particularly primers.  Keep both components and loaded ammo in a cool, dry place.  If nothing else, if inflation runs rampant and turns hundred dollar bills into toilet paper, ammo is always worthwhile for barter…

What’s you folks’ take on the situation?

79 Responses to “GUN AND AMMO SHORTAGE COMING?”

  1. Qoholeth Says:

    I’m with you, Mas.

  2. Long Island Mike Says:

    “even if their actual deliveries never come close to the top level”

    Mas, have you been hiding under a rock for the last half century? Tell me one time that a government agency failed to max out a contract that they had. I worked for the Feds, and for big corporate America. The whole idea of refusing to order something as the cutoff date arrives was an anathema to them. No matter if its toilet paper or ammo. You always get whatever you can. That means the contract will be maxed out in the THIRD or FOURTH year. Then they will cry and extend it, up the volume etc for additional years.

    Also is there any way we civilians can write off ammo purchases as a business expense on our taxes like you guys do?

  3. Blaine Says:

    While I would be among the last to trust politicians and bureaucrats, I agree that the contract between ATK and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) isn’t a big concern. Consider that DHS includes armed officers in the Secret Service, Customs, Immigration, Border Patrol, TSA (thousands of armed airline pilots), and the Coast Guard. That’s a lot of personnel who need initial and recurrent training as well as duty ammo.

  4. Wilson Says:

    Sage advice Sir, but hopefully any gun owners that lived thru the last shortage learned their lesson already. New shooters should take heed though.

  5. Rich Says:

    I suppose your need to stock up depends a lot on how much you go through. If one is a person who stocks up for “the dark day” then I would tend to have a supply for use then and a separate supply that is practice use. Obviously not everyone goes through as much ammo as someone involved in competitive shooting but I can’t imagine not having a “basic” supply in the celler although I do know people who own a firearm and who I doubt have even 2 boxes of ammo in the house. Others on the other hand….

  6. Mas Says:

    Long Island Mike asks,

    “Also is there any way we civilians can write off ammo purchases as a business expense on our taxes like you guys do?”

    Oddly enough, brother Mike, there just might be. It will key on some element of your income deriving from guns and shooting. If you’re a firearms instructor, if you write or blog about guns, if you’re involved in armed security where you work, or if you declare income from winnings in competitive shooting…YES, your expenses related to that (including ammo, training, guns, match fees, relevant study/reading materials, etc.), probably ARE deductible.

    But it’s something you have to discuss with your accountant or CPA, ’cause that’s above my pay grade here…

    Best,
    Mas

  7. Sam Says:

    Interestingly enough I just went to my local dealer today to pick up a couple boxes of 9mm and he told me the same thing. Prices are up and supply is down. 223 is especially short of supply in both ammo and reloading components,

  8. Delmar Says:

    I’m with you fellers.

  9. Roger in NC Says:

    Mas,
    I also sense that tremor in The Force, and not just in that part that deals with ammo supply. I finally acquired my long sought after Kimber last weekend and began shopping for 45 ACP reloading components. I was surprised to see that dies and other pieces and parts were out of stock at many of the large online suppliers. I finally located what I needed but found prices trending upward. I noticed that Ruger production is backlogged and that they have stopped taking orders for some products. At the same time, their stock prices are skyrocketing. The number of NICS checks just this past March are 20% above last year. Prominent pro gun folks and agencies, including the NRA, are suggesting (and possibly provoking) new concern over increasing threats of gun and ammo regulation. You don’t need a calendar to tell that it is an election year. Even though I don’t believe most of the provocateurs, I feel I am being sucked into the resulting panic buying vortex. I will be restocking and stacking reloading components a bit higher and wider than normal this year. I am hoping for a change next year (God, slap me for using those two words).

  10. Tony Says:

    Primers are already hard to find in my neck of the woods. Bullets are going higher everyday, powder is about the only thing that has not tripled. I have watched ammo prices go up a dollar a week in Walmart. Just a few years ago I remember .22 going for $9 for 550. Now they are $22. Just ordered 1000 rds of 40 brass and I pick up all I can find at the range. I have some stacked up but I will buy more as I can. Ammo is like money, never can have enough.

  11. fmj Says:

    the walmart i went to in iowa had a 2 box limit. i couldnt find .380 for 16 months. the local dealer was charging $40 for 50 rds of fmj.

  12. FrankD Says:

    Better still don’t vote the guy back in! Who would believe 60 years later our country is gone to hell. All these American lives lost in two World Wars, Vietnam, Middle East. For what?? A Dictatoship! Every generation looses a little freedom. Stack it high but if the DOJ with Holder has his way we will lose the rest of our gun rights.

  13. Pete Sheppard Says:

    I’ve spoken with three shop owners in the last week or so, and it seems like most of the buying are first-time buyers. Complete guns (ARs in particular) are in very short supply, but components are still fairly easy to find, so those who wish can still build their own.
    The components also dried up in ’08, but for those with the resources and desire, the means to DIY are still there–for the time being, at least.
    30rd AR mags are getting scarce, but 20rd (my preference, BTW) are still available.
    Last thought: Back in the ’90s, ‘primer control’ was floated as a means of controlling firearms. The idea was quashed, but it showed that there is an awareness of where the choke-point is for firearms-related activity.

  14. TroyProgressiveinCA Says:

    Since crime by most statistics is at an all time low, no politician can justifiably can get up in their soapbox and declare that guns need to be restricted even further. Not unless more of these mass shooting gunmen continue to make the press. Otherwise, the whole panic is in my mind very much “2012 End of the World as We Know It” driven. Anyone else around during hmm say… Y2K? I think folks would settle down more if instead of focusing in on their gun/ammo stash they put more into getting to know their neighbors, joining the local Grange, and any other community of sufficiency minded folk that will give them a sense of resiliency. Otherwise, all the more reason to train and lean on my MK III .22 :-p

  15. Tim from CO Says:

    When I first got my CCW and rotated my ammo/magazines for the first time, I found myself without my choice defensive load for +6 months. I’ve learned my lesson and have a nice reserve stored in dry boxes with desiccants.

    Now whenever, I see my carryload on shelves, I buy it all up. I must admit it’s fun responding to “How many boxes do you want?” with “All of it.”

    I’ll probably grab a bit more ammo but I’m almost at my storage limit. There’s only so much room in my apartment…

  16. Tom606 Says:

    Not to worry! Our benevolent Dear Leader will protect use from any harm, so there’s no need for stocking up on such violent means of mass destruction as guns and ammunition. I trust The Messiah completely when he tells us he will defend our Second Admendment rights to possess guns for hunting non-endangered species and extremely radical conservatives, and any other legitimate purposes he and his pro-gun Attorney General consider appropriate. There’s no need to freak out and obtain massive quantities of serious caliber firearms, extra magazines, ammunition, reloading components and equipment, spare parts, cleaning and maintenance supplies, and other gun related accessories.

    Whoops! My mistake! I forgot today’s no longer the first of April.

  17. Nick Says:

    I think the rush on guns and ammo is likely more caused by the reporting on the impending shortage than by people worried about the next administration or end of the world. It is a self fulfilling prophecy. News reports that guns are getting short in supply, so everyone who was on the fence previously runs out and buys their guns. Ammo scares even easier. Some people can afford to purchase more than 10 X the amount of ammo they usually get to stock up. I’ve been hearing stories of retailers reserving ammo for family and friends, so it never even makes it to the shelves.

    I’m sure many people are a bit concerned about another 4 years of Obama, and the new prepping shows aren’t helping either, but ultimately, I’d be willing to bet that the rush on the market is primarilly caused by reporting about the rush on the market.

  18. Uncle Dave Says:

    As the military is being pulled out of places has always been a good time to buy. You can find hard to get items like tracer or penatrator rounds. Recent statments by high raking government officals have the public left people wondering what is really going on. A declining dollar is producing higher oil prices. Higher fuel prices are causing other prices to rise, sucking money out of the “recovery”. In short the idea of a “zombie uprising” once laughed, at now suddenly seems to make about as much or more sence that our political leadership. Don’t stash it all in one place ;)

  19. Jeremiah Says:

    Roger: change comes at the barrel of a gun :-)

    Mas, I agree. Ammo is always in demand no matter what the political or economic situation. Best to stash some while you can. I consider ammo and investment.

  20. Andy Says:

    I will try not to address anything too specifically here, because the general principles I’m trying to impress should be kept that way: general.

    Let me be the first here to say that I am DISGUSTED by the amount of fear-mongering I have seen from “conservative” political/news sources over the last couple years.

    That’s not to say that some fears/predictions are not justified- certainly many are ultimately proven to be righteous (the Constitution-destroying efforts of Obamacare and Gunrunner being the two most obvious in my mind)- but the fact of the matter is that the signal to noise ratio is something like 1:10 right now.

    Day after I day I find myself deleting some “conservative” warning emails outright just by the way the subject line is written. Anyone else here know what I’m talking about? It’s that type of behavior that we should be avoiding; never-ending, gratuitous, knee-jerk fear-mongering. You’ve surely heard of the term “war profiteers,” right? How does “desperation profiteers” sound?

    My suggestion to people being bombarded by these sources is this: figure out what they’re trying to get from you. If it’s a letter-writing campaign to your representatives or an invitation to attend a community meeting (at no out-of-pocket cost) and discuss grievances, great. If it’s the 45th request for a donation, or a demand that you pay an outrageous fee to add your name to a petition or fax-sending campaign, stop and think. If the source sends you only 50% political information and the other 50% is product/service sales info on the latest public and/or internet fad, stop and think.

    Everyone’s BS filter should have been on “very high” since early 2008 if it wasn’t already…and remember: a filter is useless if you don’t apply it to ALL incoming information. Friends and family sometimes unwittingly pass on fear-mongering garbage too, you know.

    I’d like to sum this up by saying I am no friend of the Obamanation administration- impeachment and prison time would be GENEROUS compared to what I think the majority of them deserve as a result of their actions- but by the same token, “conservative” sources doing incessant squealing about trivial things or building MASSIVE threats out of problems and issues that sometimes don’t even exist…well, they make us out to be a laughing stock to the left as well as among any other rights/liberty supporters who can think clearly and see through the BS being shoveled from EITHER side.

  21. Tom Berry Says:

    Gander Mountain online has the lowest number of firearms for sale that I can ever recall. As of this morning 56 handguns avaliable for online order. Usually there are 300 to 500 handguns there. You cant find a lower price semi auto rifle anywhere. 223 is getting hard to find as well. No wonder people are stocking up, the GOP is running their second and third string candidates against one of the most ruthless political machine that has ever existed in American history.

  22. Doc Martin Says:

    Don’t know what it’s like in other parts of this great land but here in Montana it’s a buyers market for both 223 ammo and ARs in general.

    My dealer friends are stocking up for the very same reasons Mas mentioned (hope its ok to cal you Mas), but oddly the biggest change is even our local (but big box-like) sporting goods store is going Class 3. Local competition between class 3 dealers is new territory for us.

    I predict some interesting times ahead both in the general ammo dept. and with class 3 items. Imagine the Sunday newspaper ads filled with ’06 rifles, sales on 9mm ammo from who-knows-where, and plenty of supressors.

  23. Ray Says:

    When all is said and done and either President Obama or whatever obama-lite candidate the republicans field is elected. We should all try and remember that a lot of the vocal minority dosen’t share our views on firearms and self-defense. Most of these people are happy to shirk their responsibilities and surrender their rights to have others protect, feed, and shelter them. The don’t see the need for me to own a .40 for self defense. Or understand my wish to buy a box of 30-06 for deer hunting. They don’t want to understand how I feel it is my responsibility to defend my family and myself. Even in a semi-rural area my local law enforcement is still 30 miniutes to 1 hour away. And that’s in an emergency when seconds count. I am sorry for the political bend to my post. Mr. Ayoob I have to whole heartedly agree that right now it is best to buy guns and ammo. Even at a box of ammo every payday. Or a couple of boxes of primers and bottles of powder with your tax refund.

  24. Paul Says:

    I started buying a few new black guns a few years ago, and had no problem except for the exact configuration I wanted, but rationalization allowed me to purchase them any way. Dunham’s has Eagle brand .223 on sale every other month or so, and I bought .308 surplus last fall, not always in stock and the price is climbing as well.
    I recently bought a Tanfoglio in 45 ACP and 22 LR. Pretty good deal for the money. I have gone to Ebay to find dies, and got a 4 die carbide set used. Still looking for a sizer die and top punch. Lee molds are very inexpensive and I will start casting again pretty soon. I have noticed that powder prices are a lot higher than they were a few years ago. Anyone have any recommendation on some of the surplus powder that I see for 45 ACP loads?
    My local Farm and Fleet store got some 380 ACP stuff in while I was there… I bought 100 rounds and so did the guy next to me. At that rate it would be gone in about 10 minutes…

  25. Steelheart Says:

    I’m another who doesn’t see anything ominous in the large DHS order due to the number of agencies under their umbrella. I also wouldn’t be surprised if there’s some padding to let them cover state & local agencies if another severe shortage It was nice having occurs.

    That said, I’m overdue to inventory what I have on hand for ammo & mags so I can remedy shortfalls or increase my stockpile as required.

    Back in 2008 I only bought a few bricks of 22 but shot as much as I usually did (which wasn’t anywhere near what I should be due to working too much). It was nice having the stock on hand to help out friends too.

    I’ve had low light concerns floating around the back of my head the last several months, no idea why. I’m good on lights & lanterns so have started looking into tritium sights for my defensive firearms. Since try to look long term I’m also looking at the tools I’d need to safely install them myself.

    Steelheart

  26. Sian Says:

    Since I’m in the ammunition industry…

    yeah, real shortages, 5.56 ammo prices are high enough that it’s not worth it to even stock the cheap stuff, as it’s no longer cheap. Better to just sell the domestic brass-cased stuff, as when you’re choosing between expensive ammo and expensive ammo, it just doesn’t pan out.

    The large DHS order is a non-event.

  27. Tom606 Says:

    I’m all for stocking up on ammunition, reloading supplies, and guns, especially semi-auto pistols and rifles in military calibers and scoped rifles that can hit small targets at long range.

    However, don’t forget other needed items also like food and water to last at least several weeks in case of dire situations such as natural disasters, power grid failures, transportation problems, a financial crisis, race riots, terrorist attacks, an EMP strike, etc. Keep a good supply of things you need everyday, such as batteries, toilet paper, flashlights, and maybe a few jerry cans of gasoline with fuel stabilizer added for your car or generator, just in case, and rotate them regularly. Some battery operated, handheld radios in case of a communications breakdown could come in handy too. Plus, don’t forget an alternative type of currency or bartering items, in case of a longer term, excrement-hits-the-fan type emergency as our current fiat money would be practically useless except for use as toilet paper.

    We live in dangerous times and it’s better to be called “paranoid” than be unprepared. Building an extensively stocked, bombproof underground bunker is optional of course. Who knows? Maybe the zombies will be attacking soon and coming to a place near you.

  28. WildBoarsUnlimited Says:

    As a friend of mines says.. if things go the way we all think it will.. bullets will be the new ammo and guns will be the new barter.. Ive stocked up on the ammo I need.. I like the 9mm 40S&W 45acp and all.. but Im more of a High Power shooter myself.. My 357 mag.. 7.63×25 and 22 mag have all the ammo I can ever need.. few thousand rounds each.. I have hundreds of 30-06 300 win mag 270 and hundreds of shot shells.. all accumulated throughout the years.. mostly reloaded myself.. but heres the kicker.. how much ammo is too much? When will I ever be able to carry even 1000 rounds of ammo let alone the amount I have.. the average person can only carry about 25lbs of ammo on a single haul.. and thats still a tough job..

  29. WildBoarsUnlimited Says:

    You guys have it all misconstrued.. 1) the government does not use Hollow Point ammo for Protection or Target Practice.. 2) DHS is not ordering these rounds to protect civilians, these are round that are purely made to cause irreparable damage and kill.. 3) even if there were 2.2 mil totaled agents in all branches of DHS thats 250 or so Hollow Point Rounds per person.. Why do they need Hollow Points??

    BTW air line pilots and air marshals cant use Hollow points.. they use specialized rounds that do not penetrate the inner shell of a plane

  30. WildBoarsUnlimited Says:

    Scratch that.. I thought they switched out from hollow points to frangible.. seems its the other way around..

    Question for Mr Ayoob..

    Mr Ayoob.. What would be the need for an officer to use a 357 sig round traveling at 1500 fps?? The penetration of a bullet traveling that fast is too high in my opinion

  31. Matt Says:

    Recent shows here have had PLENTY of semiauto tactical rifles – especially of ARs.
    Prices, though, are up considerably on AKs – but ARs are down in price for “no-prestige” brands.
    Ammo availability is fine – with great variety at shows. Availability also fine at Wal-Mart stores here – but variety there poor. Prices up – but same with EVERYTHING made from or with petroleum or with high shipping costs.
    Plenty of handguns – great variety – at shows around here.

  32. Aix Sponsa Says:

    Having followed the ammo market for some time, I note that Wally is behind the price curve because they are still selling their last train load purchase and seem to not be profitteering. It is fact that much of their brand name guns and ammo are of inferior quality as often reported. Why? Most stores and online pricing has doubled recently, and some common loadings are 4 x the price of 8 yrs ago on . Facts are that new and used gun availability has almost disappeared, as has ammo components at shows, stores, and online, and suppliers report recent acquisitions sold out in 5 minutes…. Also I reiterate that owning 40 guns and 400 pounds of ammo makes bugging out in minutes difficult. Defending your local perimeter is moot if 20+ thugs come to take your house, and rape your wife and teenage daughters. A better plan is needed. Paranoia? Think Gulf Coast, Watts, Twin Towers, earthquake, asteroid, EMP…. if nothing happens, what have we lost? Most believe the present administration will reign another term and that 21 Dec 2012 will be the “end of civilization as we have known it.” Civil war is imminent? The old BOOMERS have had the best time to have ever lived in the USA. God Bless America!

  33. Matt Says:

    Add this: “cop classic” K-frame and J-frame revolvers from the glory days of S&W abound – at great prices, well under those for most good new semiauto pistols. These revolvers are easy to shoot well, forgiving of ammo differences.
    SKS rifle no longer a good buy – as it’s pushing AK price range. Days of an SKS “used” for $160 with $40 of good Russian ammo included are long over. Get AK instead.
    AR prices way down due both to generic parts situation, glut of parts – and the demand for piston-type rifles now depressing demand for the older impingement design.

  34. Jaji Says:

    Regardless of why the panic buying is happening (2012 scare, Obama, reporting on same) it is happening. Buy what you need before you need it…but *always* pay cash. It’ll be way too easy to locate the “hoarders” of supplies (and not just ammo) via credit card records.

  35. Michigan Swampdog Says:

    You CAN trust the government. Just ask any Indian!

  36. Tom606 Says:

    I have hoarded a huge supply of Coca Cola and marshmallow Peeps of both chick and bunny versions in pink and yellow, so I’m all set for any kind of apocalypse, not to mention Easter.

    In addition to my Ruger 10/22 and a brick of .22 LR ammo, I have a couple of bags of bamboo darts for my Cold Steel blowgun and plenty of yellow tree frog poison and greasy bacon drippings to tip them with, depending on the religious affiliation of my target(s).

    If all else fails, I have a large color photograph of Janet Reno to easily frighten off all but the most hardcore, fanatical barbarian.

  37. ScottieG59 Says:

    As we prepare for home invasions, muggings and terrorists, we should also consider the likely things that will cause our individual demise. Heart disease, complications of diabetes, kidney failure, cancer and auto accidents will figure in many of our departures from this world. We look at all sorts of dangers that will impact our lives, but the most certain one you will see in your mirror. I expect most of us will bring our own end as a result of our lifestyles and a lack of exercise.

    Anyway, for those who fear the shortages, well, the adaptability of humans is one great strength. People will create shortages that will look bad in the near term, especially if people panic. It reminds me of the toilet-paper shortage joke made on TV years ago. It was just a joke, but the panic created real shortages for a few days.

    With this election, I hear the extremes on both sides. I have friends on both extremes and each are so deeply worried about dangers lurking out there. I guess it is just the way we are. We just have to worry.

    One day, we complain about not being able to heat our homes. We find vast amounts of natural gas in the United States. Are we happy about this? No, we are worried that we are creating earthquakes in the mid-west and maybe we need to scale back. People are not dying from many of the things they were of in the past. So now, there are too many old people and the medical system is unable to profitably serve their medical needs.

    The market will continue to fluctuate and we will continue to complain and fear.

    I think the last time we faced these fears and controls about firearms, I was stationed overseas. This time around, the greatest shortages I have seen are financial. Costs are up on food and fuel, my medical copay is increased along with my insurance cost, etc.

  38. Fruitbat44 Says:

    WildBoarsUnlimited, I’m not quite sure what your point is, but:

    ” . . . 1) the government does not use Hollow Point ammo for Protection or Target Practice.. ”

    The only online source I’ve found about rounds expended in training by Federal Officers is a document dealing with contract security officers for the FAA: https://faaco.faa.gov/attachments/Section_J_Att_J_10_Firearms_Qual_Std.doc which specifes, for a fifty-round qualification course, “the same type of ammunition that will carried on post ” I *gather* that training with what you carry is pretty much standard these days.

    “2) DHS is not ordering these rounds to protect civilians, these are round that are purely made to cause irreparable damage and kill.. ”

    Errr . . . what is, say, a .45ACP FMJ round is supposed to do?

    The contract is for a *maximum* of 450,000,000 rounds delivered over between one-and-five years. http://online.wsj.com/article/PR-CO-20120312-904181.html It’s not for 450,000,000 rounds in one year.

    As an aside I’m reminded of Frederick Forsyth’s novel ‘The Dogs of War.’ A very good read IMHO. In it there is question raised about a suspiciously small amount of ammo allegedly ordered by the Iranian Police (the novel is set in 1973) the suspiciously small amount of ammo? 100,000 rounds of 9mmP.

  39. MD Matt Says:

    If you’re a compeditive shooter, hunter, or large scale recreational plinker, I get why you need to buy a thousand rounds before the price jumps. If you’re going to shoot the ammo anyway, might as well lay it in at a good price while it’s still around. There is a point of diminishing returns though. As has already been noted, you aren’t going to be able to bug out of your home with 20 long guns, 40 hand guns, 25,000 rounds of ammo, replacement parts, reloading components, survival gear, and food stuffs. If you aren’t going to get the training to use your chosen shooting iron and aren’t going to use the ammo, then you’re basically laying it in as an investment.
    I’m all for reasonable precautions. I’m not for encouraging people who have no real need or desire to buy up stocks out of fear. That just drives up my cost to no purpose. I haven’t been able to find .45acp glaser around here in for ever (the suppliers just don’t have it.) If you have a reasonable need, that’s cool. Seriously though, if you don’t than stop bogarting my hobby.

  40. MK19gunner Says:

    Did we learn anything from the last two big shortages? One is get good and practice with your guns *before* ammo is hard to find. The other big one most people miss? Buy a gun or two in unpopular calibers. Back 4 years ago it was hard to find 9mm, 380, 38, 45, 40, caliber pistol ammo. But guess what? There was plenty of 41, 44, and 45LC still on the shelves. Same for calibers like 25.06, 303 brit, 300 savage 30.30, 22-250 etc. Expensive yes ,and probably too expensive to practice with. But there was still ammo on the shelves just in case. One of the items that fueled the big scares was the legislation that was trying to be pushed to serial number all ammo and register each box to the buyer. This is till being pushed by Bloomberg in New York. The law was drafted to make owning or shooting an un sreil numbered numbered round a felony. So if that is the case, what use is it to horde ammo? You can’t fire it, even to hunt with. You could not fire it at a gun club either. No legal gun club will allow its members to commit felonies on its property. If you went out in the hills to fire it and were caught you were facing years behind bars. If you were pulled over and even had one stray un-numbered 22lr round rolling around under the seat you are going to prison for years. Plus the fact that if you were caught with it they were going to do a SWAT raid on your home to look for more. Then do a asset forfeiture on your home, bank account and contents leaving you and your family destitute unable to fight them in court.. Everything you ever worked for would be gone and you’d be behind bars. So much for hording.

  41. john friese Says:

    I attend numerous gun shows every year and I really don’t see a shortage of AR’s. Every show I attend seems to have a good supply on hand.

  42. john of sparta Says:

    +1 Troy (above). i’m still shooting what’s left of my Y2K stash.
    it’s really sad to see the retail price stickers on the ammo boxes.

  43. Hanza Says:

    I was in Bi-Mart today (a Pacific NorthWest membership general merchandise chain) and asked at the sporting goods counter about ammo availability.

    The guy said they had good supplies of every thing except .223 and 5.56. He said the government is buying up all of those.

    I didn’t think to ask about prices on what they did have in stock but it is probably up like every where else.

  44. MJM Says:

    Regarding Massad’s advice to re-loaders, I have to add: the federal government makes shipping primers a hassle. That means fewer suppliers, and higher prices. The little, unseen inhibitors dry up supply–and that seems to be the intent.
    I expect ammo supply to “dry up overnight.” Except, we all seem to know it’s coming.

  45. quickjoeysmall Says:

    Can someone please produce the evidence of O’Bamas anti gun measures in this administration? Claiming everything he’s ever spoken about liking, is a firm commitment to ban everything next term is absurd.
    If you think every time a politician says ‘I’d like to….’ and expect that to be carried out later; you are in for a lot of dissappointments.
    My Ayoob; like the NRA is touting for the republicans based on exaggeration.
    qjs

  46. Tim from CO Says:

    “[Barack Obama and Joe Biden] also support making the expired federal Assault Weapons Ban permanent.”

    http://change.gov/agenda/urbanpolicy_agenda/

    Obama to Seek New Assault Weapons Ban

    http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/story?id=6960824&page=1

    Some might say “so what?” to a new Assault Weapon Ban. The previous AWB covered magazines with +10 ten capacity. Seeing how broad and general the last AWB was, it seems reasonable to think the next AWB would be just as bad, if not worse.

    Speaking of the previous AWB, Biden helped write that piece of legislation as well. Not to mention Holder’s whole ATF thing that just happened (did anyone see the piece about Holder saying he was willing you brainwash the public to be anti-gun?)…

    If your Vice-President and Attorney General are rabidly anti-gun. Even if we ignore part of your campaign included an AWB AND you mention working on gun control “under the radar”, it’s not too promising.

  47. Hanza Says:

    “Can someone please produce the evidence of O’Bamas anti gun measures in this administration?”

    Obamination is a Communist, and as other Communists and totalitarians such as the Nazi’s have banned private ownership of firearms you can take it to the bank that he will do the same when he thinks the time is right.

    I don’t have the item on hand any more but he was quoted saying to Sarah Brady that he was working on anti firearms issues on the QT.

    I take that to mean the “Fast and Furious” program that was going to be used by the administration to “prove” that firearms needed to have more regulations imposed because the Mexican drug cartels were getting their firearms from U.S. dealers.

  48. clark Says:

    First, I have a question I hope to get an answer for:

    I carry an extra mag in my front pocket, sometimes the hollow point in the top round gets packed with pocket lint.

    Is this considered a barrel obstruction?

    If so, is it a high priority worry, er I mean, concern, or is it a low priority concern?

    Second, I notice just about everyone on this website talking about stock piling ammo, as is true on many websites.
    Is it lost on People that those who might wish to boss around you all against your wishes didn’t notice that too?
    Doesn’t an alarm bell go off when bureaucratic organizations are equipped as if they were an army?

    Lastly, ScottieG59 wrote, “So now, there are too many old people and the medical system is unable to profitably serve their medical needs.”

    This is whatchya call a “meme of the Power Elite” … as if this is somehow a failure of the market and not a symptom of goberment meddling?

    If you haven’t spent a few minutes over at The Daily Bell, perhaps you should, and make up your own mind as to what’s what?

    Push will soon come to shove, as it does with all bullies. Submit or resist. At the same time, the ability for them to act like they can “protect” will diminish, so security is in your own hands, same as it ever was.

    Of course it would be far better if everyone wised up and walked away and started something new and better and more peaceable. Wouldn’t that be cool, secession and nullification:

    Secession: The Hope for Humanity
    http://www.lewrockwell.com/longcore/longcore17.1.html

    However; based on things like the lack of reaction the administration has towards certain things, and the intense hostility others such as the New Black Panthers and the Neo-Nazis has, things seem to be coming to a directed boil.

    See: Trayvon Martin and the Cult of Government Supremacy
    http://www.freedominourtime.blogspot.com/2012/03/treyvon-martin-and-cult-of-government.html

    Heck, Next Time: … They’ll Just Send In The Drones
    http://www.freedominourtime.blogspot.com/2012/03/hutaree-case-next-time-theyll-just-send.html

    Walter Williams wrote an article once about a neighbor building a cannon and aiming it at his house. How is this is any different considering everything else they’ve done i.e. V.I.P.E.R. checkpoints and the promise to expand them likely using newly purchased bullet resistant sheds with stop and go lights; thieving T.S.A. pervs gone berserk nonstop; the likelihood of being forced to buy health insurance; the possibility of having all older cars being outlawed; the solid reality of farmers having their livestock taken without compensation or due process; searches of innocent individuals everywhere without warrants? And on it goes…

    To think that things aren’t going to come to a head, and a collapse or default of some kind isn’t eminent, seems sort of naive.

    “There is going to be a government default at some point. Tens of millions of these people will lose their jobs.”

    http://teapartyeconomist.com/2012/04/06/tax-burden-40-million-government-workers/

    It seems to me the goberment is preparing for the inevitable:

    When Government Safety Nets Break

    “When the bough breaks, the cradle will fall.
    And down will come baby, cradle and all.”

    http://lewrockwell.com/north/north1121.html

    Anyway, I was just looking for an answer to my lint question. Hope you don’t mind my input and will consider the links.

    After all: We Are All Prisoners Now
    http://www.lewrockwell.com/roberts/roberts229.html

    And, whoa: How Things Change Out From Under Us
    http://www.lewrockwell.com/roberts/roberts266.html

    All I can say for certain is: Quietly, Quietly, The Revolution Arrives
    http://www.informationliberation.com/?id=38631

  49. Marc-Wi Says:

    Got 1000 rounds coming Fri. Damned expensive.

  50. Hanza Says:

    Whatever happened to ‘Fast and Furious’?

    New book dubs it ‘Obama’s bloodiest scandal’ and most ‘shameless cover-up’

    http://www.wnd.com/2012/04/whatever-happened-to-fast-and-furious/?cat_orig=politics

  51. quick joey small Says:

    Things he said he’d like to do before he was president and vague talk about ‘would seek to’ ‘would like to’ ‘is working on under the radar’
    If those aren’t promises made specifically so he doesn’t have to keep them; I’d like to see ones that are.
    If this fellow is so rabidly anti-gun as you claim; where is the evidence he has lifted a finger to ban guns in the 3 years he’s been in the white house. Why put forward these ridiculous arguments?
    It’s the reverse of the democrats problem with gun control. Why should anyone believe in their other policies when their gun policies are fact free? So why should anyone believe Mr Ayoob on guns, when his political pronouncements are invention?
    Some of your readers; the ones who think O’Bama is a communist and you are living in a dictatorship lol; obviously believe anything they are told.
    The rest are going to question your judgment.
    qjs

  52. Mas Says:

    quickjoeysmall, I’ll refer you to my blog post of March 28, 2012, and the reader commentary attached thereto. Follow the links. Stay tuned for the speeches that will be made this coming Friday through Sunday at the NRA National Meeting in St. Louis. I believe that will collectively answer your questions and provide the information you request.

    clark, no need to comment on your melange of links. A hollow point bullet “packed” with lint as you describe it will very likely fail to expand when it strikes, but does not constitute a barrel obstruction per se. You might want to consider a magazine pouch. Foreign objects do not belong in gun barrels or in the ammunition supply, whether they consist of dirt, metallic obstructions, packed snow, or lower life forms.

  53. clark Says:

    Thank you for the reply.

  54. Tom606 Says:

    Mas:

    When you refer to “lower life forms” do you mean Communists, Democrats, Marxists, Socialists, or all of the above? Must be a very small liberal to be lodged in a bullet’s hollow point, even a .45 caliber projectile.

    Seriously, methinks this blog has been infiltrated by slimy individuals sucking up to our Dear Leader and his anti-gun cronies. Anyone who does not know of The Anointed One’s radically liberal voting record during his brief political career cannot be enlightened by any amount of facts or reason. Those folks are like zombies, whose only thought is to eat, except devoted disciples of the White House occupier will always cling fanatically to his every word, no matter how blatant and ridiculous those lies may be.

  55. quick joey small Says:

    Thank you for your reply Mr Ayoob. I followed that blog and comments and in fact contributed with the same points I’m making now.
    Raking through a politicians past for any anti gun comment he’s ever made and then claming this proves they are going to be actively anti gun now there is no political gain; is an exaggeration. Politicians on both sides have more or less decided there is nothing in it for them from pro or anti gun moves. So both sides make vague comments to please their supporters and then do nothing.
    I’ll look for some hard evidence of his anti gun activity in the white house from the NRA; who so far have only used the same exaggerations as you and if they come up with some, I’ll apologise promptly
    qjs

  56. john dillinger Says:

    Germany had a “dept of homeland security” called the SS. In ours at this time 135,000 and growing. These bullets are someof the ammo they will be shooting the general population with while confiscating the guns. Now believe me when I say it. Any student of history will tell you the same. This man in the white house hates you and all whites, everything out of his mouth is a lie or 100 year old Marxist crap that did not work anywhere..Wake!

  57. john dillinger Says:

    If Obama is re elected, all hell will break loose right after. He has laid low on this gun thing to get the votes of the “necessary Idiots”, what commies call the little folk that they do not kill off right after they take over.

  58. gary van meter Says:

    well everybody expressed their thoughts on what obama will do. what we have to do is make sure he does not get another 4 years. we all need to get out vote. if your are not regestered,do so.. if you have kids get them to vote. there are many sportsmen clubs out there fighting for your guns & rights suport them. i still say he was born in africa and is illegail president .

  59. quick joey small Says:

    Actually I’ll tell you in advance what is going to be said at the NRA National Meeting in St. Louis:

    Every anti gun comment ever, or anything that can be construed that way (someone thinks another constitution might be good for other countries is purely an attack on the second amendment) by anyone associated with O’Bama, is going to be represented as a concrete set commitment by him to attack gun rights.
    Anything O’Bama has ever said that was anti gun or any vague promise to ‘do something’ is going to be presented the same way.
    The record of what actually happened on his watch: the right to carry guns in national parks is now allowed and it’s easier to carry a gun in DC is not going to be mentioned.
    This standard will not be applied to republicans.

    And I ask again: if the reverse of his record had happened: he removed a right to carry guns in national parks and made it harder to carry a gun in DC but made a vague promise to pro gunners to ‘possibly do something’ in his; second term. Would you be now saying ‘we can ignore what he actually did; because of what he says? You know full well you wouldn’t.
    qjs

  60. Long Island Mike Says:

    I am anxiously awaiting November. But just a reminder, as I have been reminded by others over the last half year of primary campaigning. Unlike any other election we participate in, the general election in November will be determined by the Electoral College. Remember that popular vote is NOT what elects the President. Just as we cherish and honor the Second Amendment to the Constitution, we should likewise cherish and honor the system our founders put in place. The Electoral College has some very powerful plus’s that safeguard our states and the general populace.

    You need to really look and study the electoral votes in your state and determine if your vote really matters. I live in an occupied republic and sadly it won’t matter one thin dime’s worth if I vote or not. Yeah, I’ll probably head to the polls but it is an academic exercise for me and my family.

    http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/electoral-college/about.html

  61. Dougded Says:

    Yep, agree with article, buy components, bullets and primers especially, brass can be scrounged anywhere there is a fight or a range, powder is a variable. Often you can use one powder for several calibers. Versitility is the key to powder….. Protect your reloading equipment, stock spares, and store you components and finished products in easily moveable moisture proof containers. Even a zip bag is better than nothing. Don’t tell every body you reload either. Keep enough to make movement easy and enough to protect what needs protecting. Stock pile only in your final secure spot. Otherwise you risk losing it to smarter better shots. or bigger firepower……….

  62. Jacob Morgan Says:

    There is a lot of talk about ammo for barter. But ammo is not only the one thing a lot of people have, it is usually the only thing people have as emergency supplies.

    How about water filters, rain barrels, kerosene and propane heaters and stoves, grain mills, non-hybrid seeds, soap, socks, garden tools, chickens, etc. How many people are going fight off the zombies only to starve sitting on ten thousand rounds of ammo? And if bartering, what better than to spread around means to build long-term solutions for food production, heating, etc.

  63. WR Moore Says:

    It would be interesting to see the terms of the DHS contract. As others have noted, there’s an impressive number of feds who are either part of DHS and are covered, and other agencies who can piggyback on the contract at the specified price.

    IIRC, NYPD used to go through some 3 million rounds per year themselves. Considereing the changes made in training since those days of yesteryear, the total is probably up.

    My employer once had a contract with Federal, I don’t recall the total number of rounds-if there was one. I do recall that it ran 5 years and stipulated lots of not less than 100,000 rounds per order.

  64. Outrageous Older Women Says:

    Ive been an NRA member most of my adult life. I have way too many guns (thanks Dad) and conceal carry. I really think some of you guys have been watching too many apocalyptic movies and “Doomsday Preppers” episodes. Yeah, ammo is expensive and firearm manufacturers are slammed. But too many people are churning up dubious scenarios that create these problems. Try to relax a little. Moderation in all things ain’t a bad thing. Yeah, we will have some planetary ELE (that’s an Extintion Level Event) at some point, but you won’t survive to shoot it out with rampaging neighbors. And, Obama is not a communist. That’s ridiculous, and I hear so much crap comming out of people’s mouths blaming him for the most inane things that happen in their lives, I have a hard time keeping from laughing. Try not believing everything uninformed and schizoid friends and aquaintances utter. Research it for yourself. That’s the greater part of self reliance. Nuff said.

  65. Richard Says:

    What insane thing health care system that counrty can not afford push down are throat make US all buy goverment run health care threatening those who do not fines jail time. Hand out billion dallors abrams tanks to unstable Egyptian govermt Obama aprove him self. Obama had Hillary Clinton sign Un treat which would allow him ban small arms from his owen people with Un treat allow him to do so becuase buy pass congress to do so. I am spit ball but I say wait for second term in White house before spring that on all of us. Obama main man Erick Holder run Doj in so many scandal that he been in more congressional hearing from what happen with fast and fours to salander than run Doj. White House Aft along with Obama try blame gun dealers for what happen across board in mexico when got caught when Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed one semi out rifles that Aft lost down there from Operation Fast and Furious. The fall out from that been really along with facts Obama give full apovel over matter how being handle buy Erick Holder. There fact Obama way in on matter Trayvon Martin case before all facts have been know state thing about if Florida laws had been way where writen this would happen. Be careful looking in Obama four year in White House there reason attack NRA people support. He can not run on his record for it sucks . He spent frist four years not pass goverment budget can not blame republican for that becuase Democrat ran both House and Senate with majority out number republican for frist 3 year of him being in white all that time only thing that majority pass health care bill no one read. He not provide any jobs any numbers that have matter. He spent trillions dollars that Obama keep spending. I find all people trying tell other people well should scare people should look at fours years Obama been in White House realize they have real reason be scare have four more years of him in White House base on record. Unless live in Obama state denyle. Research so called people claim if your not smart enough know Obama becuase your friends with NRA or claim to be with NRA they may not be who they seem.

  66. Jeff Winthers Says:

    If they were contracting for standard wad cutters or FMJ type ammo, with part of the contract being for the HST Critical Duty, I might not be too shook up about it. However, it is my understanding, that the entire order was for the new HST Critical Duty ammo. This ammo is for LE primarily, with the Critical Defense ammo for John Q Public. I’m not sure what the difference is, or even if there is a difference. But this ammo was designed for urban and/or suburban operations within a building, or to go through barriers with the polymer tip blocking foreign material from entering the hollow point, thereby preventing proper expansion of the projectile. I highly doubt they will use this ammo for practice, as expensive as it is.

  67. Richard Says:

    Russian and American airborne forces to hold joint training exercise at Colorado’s Fort Carson.

    Navy. Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff congratulates Gen. Nikolai Makarov, Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Russia after signing a memorandum of understanding to continue combatting terrorism at the Russian The Central Navy Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia on May 6, 2011. Mullen is on a three-day trip to the country to meet with his counterparts discussing issues of mutual interest. (Department of Defense photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Chad J. McNeeley/Released)

    For the first time in history, Russian and American airborne forces will hold joint drills in the US. The anti-terror exercises scheduled for May 2012 will get off to a flying start with a tactical landing operation and “terrorist” camp raid.

    ­“This is the first time such an event is being held,” Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Col. Aleksandr Kucherenko stressed, announcing the plan. “The Russian airborne will contribute a special task group that will exercise with US special service weapons.”

    Russian soldiers will receive preparatory training in Colorado’s Fort Carson with the US weaponry and equipment they are to use during the operation. The drills include parachuting, operation planning, reconnaissance, assault operations and evacuations by helicopter.

  68. Kurt Feigel Says:

    Sorry but I’m going to disagree that shortages won’t be here soon. ATK the worlds LARGEST supplier of ammunition was responsible for the last shortage. Their contract was up for renewal. They are 100% dependent on the government for survival of the company. 75% of their company is military contracts for rockets,propellant,etc, they run the lake city ammo plant and lots of others. They make the wal mart brands. ALL IT WOULD TAKE for them to create a cascade shortage across the market would be for them to short civilian supply 25%. Shortly after the supply problems started in 2008 their contract was renewed with the government. I can all but guarantee that the Obama admin told them to short supply or else. This created a cascade breakdown of supply. All the Primers, and Powder, and reloading presses vanished from the shelves. Yes some of this was panic or hoarding but that has a limited effect. Eventually people run out of room in their apartments. Stock up now!

  69. tonymac Says:

    Whether we like it or not the great gun and ammunition shortage of 2012 (and beyond?)
    has started.
    The reasons for it do not matter, its here and
    we have to deal with it !!!!
    You can thank the internet.
    Rumors or facts are instantly traveled around the
    world to billions of people.
    30 years ago all this would not be happening.
    We wouldn’t know what everyone else is thinking.
    Anyway its started and we have to deal with it.
    I used to buy a couple of boxes of 9mm/380/22
    just when needed. Now I buy 5 to 10 boxes at
    a time. And soon millions of others will be doing the
    same thing. And BINGO, empty shelfs everywhere.
    And you can bet that will happen !!!!!!

  70. Rald277 Says:

    Today I purchased 400 rounds of PMC Bronze .223 55 grain FMJBT right at 34 cents a round shipped. Three months ago I was getting Lake City XM855 penetrators on stripper clips in ammo cans for that price. Now that Lake City package is rapidly approaching 50 cents a round if you can find it. What is causing the shortage may be debatable but the impacts are not. Fortunately for me I got my base stock numbers up to what I wanted before the big jump. Todays purchase was for plinking ammo. To that end the PMC will work fine.

  71. Justin Says:

    Shortage or not all reloaders should be buying as many primers and projectiles that they can afford. I bought 20,000 primers and enough powder and projectiles back in 2007 and just recently did the same thing. Every time I look at any reloading component or ammunition it is more expensive than the last time I bought it. So it will never be as cheap as it is right now and I would stocking up. In 07 primers were 16-19 dollars per 1,000 when I just stocked up this year they were 33.00 a 1,000. In 5 years they are guaranteed to be well over 45.00 a 1,000

  72. Tom Ret Says:

    If you think Obama and his admin support individual gun ownership, you are delusional. Obama is the best reason to stock up on ammo and components before his views evolve.

  73. mikkel Says:

    in 2008 hillary clinton running for president in one of the debates made a statement (like) “THE CONSTITUTION GUARANTES YOUR RIGHTS TO BEAR ARMS BUT SAYS NOTHING ABOUT YOUR AMMO.” that made my hair stand up on end. i told all my shooting friends to start buying ammo and stock pile as much as you can. those who did not suffered badly during the ammo shortage a few years ago. now the liberals have full control and the congress is willing to wheel and deal with the president ( Speaker of the House
    John Boehner) willing to meet half way which means we are screwed.
    yes buy that new gun but by all means get lots of ammo ( if you shoot alot think of reloading) about 500 to 1000 rounds per weapon is needed and safley stored. remember one thing from history. never never never give up ( winston chruchill) the fight is just beginning and remember we and i mean we are not alone. there are 90,000,000 of us out there who own weapons and the guys i know have at least 20 of each rifle and guns.
    hang tight and store alot.
    big mikkel (doomer)

  74. Rich Ramsey Says:

    heh heh glad I am paranoid delusional old guy! It is now Jan 31 2013.no guns or ammo available. Obammy on his soap box. many soap boxes trotted out. I don’t have enogh cases to last forever, but I won’t be going down swinging a baseball bat. .22,9mm, .45 30-30, 7.62 54r, .38, .357, 20 ga. Come ‘n’ git it, Obammy! lol Catch me if ya can!! I’m an old fart but learned a lot over the years.

  75. Tyler Kent Says:

    Why doesn’t some credible sports or gun journalist simply call the ammunition manufacturers and ask them why their ammo is in such short supply? Is it simply because of panic retail buying, or because of huge foreign contract orders, federal government purchases, or what? All I see on the Internet is pure speculation by frustrated ammo buyers.

  76. Mitch Says:

    Dear shooters,

    I’ll tell you a couple reasons why we are short on ammo, because the industry is gouging and taking advantage of the fears, confusion and ignorance of the climate in America that the Oboma administration and liberal media have MANUFACTURED I mean, why is it we can’t even get freakin 22 shells and if we can they are about $50.00 a brick, that’s bull. In addition, some will say the military gets priority in the purchase of ammo, and they do, I spent 35 years in the Army and retired last year. We used to turn in all expended brass and it was in-turn sold to ammo producing industries for reload. As of 2009 all recovered spent brass in the military is ground up and so;d as scrap metal. I can’t even talk about this any more the industry and the Obama administration are generating the same outcome, but for two different reasons, one for power the other for money. The thing is they both only need one thing from the population of America and that one thing is in GREAT abundance, and that is stupidity.
    Mitch

  77. John Says:

    I remember getting angry at myself for buying up so much powder, bullets and primers during the last two years. Well, now it’s 2013 and my buddies can’t find any ammo and some are (shocking) wanted to try reloading! Trouble is, there’s nothing to buy…

  78. Marvin Motte Says:

    I have a friend in the service, SP, MSTSGT, that buyes Ammo for the unit and indicated that they were supose to double thier supply. And the reson they can get it, 1 GOV. & 2 the Gov has put a hold on any other sell. Meaning there is NO shortage, never has been. makes sense to me.

  79. Dan Says:

    Nevadabrass.com has .223 and 7.62 brass in stock right now.

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