Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The 'Ammo Shortage'.... what's your thoughts?

Folks, Carteach is trying to get a sense of what people are seeing across the country right now.  Regarding the ammunition supply issue, a few questions in hope of generating discussion...

Can you get what you want, only at higher prices?

What are you seeing happening at the stores you normally buy from?

What are you hearing through the rumor mill about this?

What are your thoughts long term?

I'll chime in first, of course, to get the ball rolling.  Can I get what I want? Mostly, yes. Prices are higher, no doubt.  It helps that I can load almost anything I wish myself.  Rimfire prices are a bit vexing, and there is no such thing as "I'll come back tomorrow" when you find it for sale.

The stores I normally buy from are running thin, leaning towards bare shelves on most everything.  Prices have jumped.... a LOT.... but that is to be expected.  Wholesale prices on ammo has also jumped, in some cases by 100%.  

I've been watching the wholesale websites, and supplies that do show up vanish fast... very fast.  Sometimes within minutes.  The only thing generally readily available are the high ticket items, like buck-a-round premium defensive ammo and such.  I see the same on reloading supplies as well.

What I am hearing, from the most credible sources I have, is that this is likely a typical politically generated run on the supply, and will probably ease up in a few months as people lose their fear.  On the other hand, should Pres/Congress/States do more silly grandstanding, it could really extend that period.   I hear short term = a few months, and long term = well into next year.

Meanwhile, Think I will replenish my supply of primers and powder ..... today.


David said...

Here in Houston area, finding 9mm, .223, and 22LR (don't understand that one) is next to impossible. The stores that seem to still be getting regular shipments have started posting rationing policies. Academy Sports' policy is 1 box per customer per day. It does not appear that they have raised prices. Reloading? Hah, I can't find bullets or primers locally or online. Unfortunately for me, 22 Hornet uses many of the same bullets as the "scary" .223 round, and the hoarders have stripped the shelves bare of those.

Hartley said...

Replenish your primers & powder? A little late, from what I can see. I'm real glad I did that in October..:-)

Around here, 5.56 is buck-a-round for plain ol' M193 - the same stuff that was $.35 in early December. You can get dribs and drabs of 9mm, 45ACP, 308, 5.56 if you keep looking, but the price is outta sight. Same thing for AR-15s and AKs - there seem to be a fair number of folks wanting to cash in their "extras", so you can find 'em - but they are priced into the stratosphere.

ASM826 said...

If you have some local source for powder and primers, you might do that today. On-line? Not an option. No primers, no common powders, no bullets.

The stores in our area are picked over like a 3 day old wildebeest skeleton. Handguns cabinets, bare. Bolt and semi-auto rifles, gone. A few lonely O/U shotguns and lever actions still available. Ammo, the same. No 9mm, .45ACP, .223, 30.06, or .308 at any price.

They made a lot of money since mid-December, but the supply pipeline is empty.

Carteach said...

Through the magic of the innertubes, I was able to turn two 10 round AR magazines into enough cash to buy 2000 primers and 2 pounds of powder, and did that thing today. I can still buy powder/primers/bullets, but they are clearly in short supply.

Yesterday I was able to purchase 3 bricks of my favorite .22 ammunition, but it was the last three. I expect to burn one next weekend alone, at Appleseed, mostly by giving it away to shooters if they arrive short on ammo.

Visited three local shops yesterday/today. Two are limiting purchases on what stock they have, and the other simply jacked prices through the roof.

Anonymous said...

Drove out to Cabelas twice in the past month. The ammunition shelves are completely bare of commonly used centerfire rounds and .22 rimfire.

The exasperated salesmen say the rimfire ammo is leaving the shelf as quickly as they can put the stock out.

I may have to stop shooting for a period of time until I can secure a source of ammo.

Sherm said...

We've one store town that had a pallet or two of 9mm as recently as a week ago priced fairly reasonably. Another puts a few bricks of .22 out every morning and saves the rest for the next day. Most everything else is gone there and anywhere else in town. I haven't looked for reloading supplies much since I'd stocked up on primers and powder last year. I am going to run out of bullets soon, however, so may have to order some since I see lead times of 4-6 weeks.

Boat Guy said...

You won't be replenishing primers where I live. I'm VERY glad I made it a policy over the last year to never walk out of our big box store without a brick.
No brass. VERY few bullets (I picked up the last box of 7mm on the shelf; no .308, no 6.5mm, no .45, no .357, no .40/10mm.
I bought three boxes of 185-gr JHP .45I wanted four, but there was a limit
There is NO common caliber rifle ammo (.30-30, .30-06) available from major producers. Some Barnes on the shelf. If you're looking for .416 Rigby you are still in luck.
No .22LR's.
This is the big box store that had a pallet stacked three-high of 5.56 green tip for abuot $120 bucks in late 2011.
Again, VERY glad I've been buying steadily for "some time"

ZerCool said...

Walmart here is stripped. There were a few boxes of trap loads, a handful of .410, and a few boxes of sabot slugs. Even the .357Sig was gone...

Talked with my regular dealer last week, who has a small bit of common defensive calibers left on the shelf, but no idea when he'll be able to resupply.

Anonymous said...

SW WA state here. No primers, no powder, no bullets in all common calibers anywhere in town. No 22LR either. My favorite small local gunshop did have PMC 5.56 X-TAC for $14.99/box and PMC 150 gr 308 for 17.99/box but with a limit of 5 boxes total. I got 5 and will be back in the morning. He did have a good supply of 9mm and 40 S&W.

Eainsdad said...

Gonzales LA.
No rifle other than 'classic' calibers (you would love it but I can't find anything for my long guns {5.56 mm and .308 and 6.8 SPC} unless I hit the small boutique gun shops and pay MUCH money). 45-70 and 8mm Mauser and some Swedish and the like.
Pistol ammo is trickling in so I can get 9mm or .40 or .45 enough to be able to have short range days but it COSTS. Absolutely no .22 but large-ish amounts of .17 did show up this week.

Rob Taylor said...

Here in Greenville County SC there's nothing. Shelves of the big boxes are basically empty. No .22 left and no handgun ammo to be had. 12ga and 20ga are basically gone and .410 is jacked up. The Academy Sports by me has limits on how much you can buy.

But I noticed shortages well before the Dems started talking about new bans. You can still get deer gun calibers and some .223 varmint loads around here. No slugs or buckshot that I've seen and oddly all the cowboy loads in .45 are gone. I used to be able to get them anywhere.

hank said...

Nv. Some stores have fairly good supplies, some don't have anything. Not much .22LR, Bought a 250 rd box of 9mm the other day for $99. Most stores not raising prices unless supplier does. Walmart has fair amount of 20 ga but not much 12. Bass pro has lots of shot shells and rifle except .223. 22lr and pistol ammo disappears within an hour of stocking the shelves. They have a 10 box limit

Anonymous said...

My buddies and I are putting together a day to train a half dozen guys we know on the basics of reloading. The plan is to start with some homeworka (reading) and then setup some equipement and use single stage presses and have each guy go through every step of the process, we'll do a box of 38 and 9mm each and then go to the range and shoot the stuff they reloaded.
Education: "the more you know" and all that...

treefroggy said...

Wonder what will happen to the price of 5.56 as the Afghanistan adventure dies down and there is a surplus ?

Also, since both the Army and Marines have "outlawed" PMags, wonder if there will be a glut of bring-backs.

Wally said...

No 223 or 22LR to be had. Primers and powder are gone too.

Tons of 7.62 nagant and 32long though... Fair supply of x39 and x54 in steel case.

But it's a tough market and I have been naughty about letting my .22LR supplies run low - double shame as I have taken a new shooter under my wing.

Matt said...

$80 dollars for a G19 mag? Insanity! Definitely not buyinh jack squat until the stupidity dies down.

Ryan said...

Hartney's comment of "Around here, 5.56 is buck-a-round for plain ol' M193 - the same stuff that was $.35 in early December. You can get dribs and drabs of 9mm, 45ACP, 308, 5.56 if you keep looking, but the price is outta sight. Same thing for AR-15s and AKs - there seem to be a fair number of folks wanting to cash in their "extras", so you can find 'em - but they are priced into the stratosphere." pretty much goes for Southern Arizona as well. .223 and 7.62x39 are next to unavailable at halfway sane commerical prices. The private market has them but at loony toons prices starting around a buck a shot for .223 and .50c for 7.62x39 for bulk pack type stuff and going up from there. Plenty of AR's and AK's available but at crazy prices. Almost no AR's under $1,400 and the $1,400 ones were either $650 Oly/ Del-Ton/ PSA's 2 months ago or are franken guns. Folks seem to think 1k is a sane price for a WASR-10 AK. Mag availability is OK if you will pay stupid prices.

Most hunting type centerfire ammo and shotgun shells are generally available. Premium handgun ammo (defensive JHP type stuff) is still plenty available though the bulk FMJ's have gone up considerably in price and for 9/40/45 you can't be picky on load/brand.

.22 ammo in little 50 and 100rd boxes is trickling in. You can probably find some but maybe not your favorite flavor.

Ryan said...

Treefroggy, The Materiel Command directive saying PMAGs were verboden was backpedaled on almost immediately. I suspect it was something that got a bit out of hand before the massive backlash and they they were nicely reminded that the dog wags the tail, not the opposite.

Roger said...

In south Florida, the shelves are bare. All ammunition is hard to find, reloading supplies are non-existant. .223, 9mm, .45 and all .22rf bulk ammo is not to be found.
At my local public range, attendance is down by at least 50%.
Prices are meaningless if there is none to be found.
Obama, arms & ammunition salesman of the decade.

Firehand said...

Oklahoma, forget it. Unless you happen to get into a Wally World right after they get a delivery, the ammo disappears FAST. Regular sporting goods stores, the same. And everyone has one or two per customer limits. And that's on about everything except shotgun shells.

Place I usually get reloading stuff at is VERY thin on bullets, powder and primers are one each type per customer; and they've broken primers down to packs of 500 to spread them around more(same price as usual, no rise there).