Rotating your Ammo. Does it expire?

This is a discussion on Rotating your Ammo. Does it expire? within the Defensive Ammunition & Ballistics forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Hi folks, I'm still new to the game so forgive me if this sounds weird. My question is, does ammo have a shelf life? I've ...

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Thread: Rotating your Ammo. Does it expire?

  1. #1
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    Rotating your Ammo. Does it expire?

    Hi folks, I'm still new to the game so forgive me if this sounds weird. My question is, does ammo have a shelf life? I've never heard either way, and I know plenty of people who have more ammo than most of my LGS's. The Winchester JHP's currently in my Sig are several years old. Only reason I have them is because they were given to me, and 9mm is still tough to find reasonably priced, and my budget is very tight. Shot about half the box before I started carrying them and all went well, no malfunctions.

    Is my concern silly, or justified?

    Thanks

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  3. #2
    Ex Member Array DetChris's Avatar
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    Nope. Keep em dry and don't fiddle with them and they'll last years. Decades. The more you cycle your mags and springs and the more you rechamber a round the more damage you do. Load it and forget about it.

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    Senior Member Array Fausty's Avatar
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    Well, I think most of us rotate out about once a year. I don't know if I would consider it necessary, I just do it every year in March (the date on my permit). If you carry in hot humid climates you could feasibly get sweat on it.

    I guess my view is that a box of carry ammo is like $20-30. Not that much when you consider it could be the difference between life and death.
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    Distinguished Member Array lionround's Avatar
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    I have friends who are shooting ammo they "borrowed" from the Army during the Vietnam War.
    The early bird gets the worm, but the second mouse gets the cheese.
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    Member Array warbirds's Avatar
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    Your ammo is fine. I sure hope you have been shooting, maintaining your weapon, and increasing your personal profficiency in the last 2 years.

    You didn't clarify one way or another- if you haven't shot in the last 2 years you may as well not bother carrying at all.

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    Distinguished Member Array sealteam20001's Avatar
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    KEEP your powder dry. I've shot some of granddads ammo. no problem, He passed at 98 young.

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    VIP Member Array LimaCharlie's Avatar
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    If you keep it cool and dry, it can last for several decades. I was shooting ammo and eating c-rations in Viet Nam in the 1960s with dates from WWII in the 1940s. Yesterday, I shot six boxes of .357 magnum ammo at the range that I bought in 1992 when Bill Clinton won the election and there was a run on guns and ammo. It has been stored in four different homes in three different states since I purchased it. If it is not corroded, it is probably good. I do not shoot reloaded ammo by someone else unless I have known them for many years and trust their reloading skills.
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    Ex Member Array IndianaSig's Avatar
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    If it has been kept in a proper environment it will be fine. Anyone carrying a gun needs to practice regularly and they also need to do at least a minimum amount of that practice with the ammo they are carrying for SD. The best way to do so is to use up what you've had in the gun for a while and then put new ammo in it. At least for a while, you'll be replacing it with more from the old stash but, as stated earlier, it all should be ok if it has been in a proper environment. The unfortunate part of this plan is that you eventually need more ammo. In today's market, depending on what you want, that can range from expensive to impossible. Happy shooting.

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    Good question OP, I had wondered the same.

    BTW, welcome to the forum
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    Distinguished Member Array Madcap_Magician's Avatar
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    If there's no visible damage to the cartridges, they're probably fine.
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    VIP Member Array Kilowatt3's Avatar
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    Be careful shooting anything over 60-70 years old - it might suffer from slightly reduced velocities.
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    VIP Member Array mprp's Avatar
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    Beings that you're talking about 9mm, (not revolver ammo) I would concern myself more with ammo that has been cycled through the weapon repeatedly than to worry about the age of the ammo. Make sure that you're aware of bullet setback as a result of cycling ammunition in autos. Here's a video from MAC Bullet Setback and Your Defensive Handgun - YouTube
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    Distinguished Member Array Hodad's Avatar
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    Everything has a certain shelf life, but it so happens that ammunition has a very very long one.

    Yogurt not so much!!!
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    Member Array jscottjr's Avatar
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    Man I wish I had that problem. Seems like the more ammo I get the more I shoot. Just started reloading a couple months ago, and am up to all three calibers I shoot regularly. As soon as I get a comfortable amount of ammo built up it seems its time for a trip to the range. Then the cycle starts all over again lol

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    Senior Member Array Brent95's Avatar
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    I watched a show not long ago called Cold Case Files.The one i was watching happened in the 90's can't remember exact year.Anyway someone was shot and killed and they found the box of bullets,the BG used.The bullets according to them,were manufactured in the 60's.

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