medium and long term storage of ammo

Discussion in 'Technical Questions & Information' started by targetacqmgt, Sep 29, 2012.

  1. targetacqmgt

    targetacqmgt New Member

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    I am defining medium storage 1-5 years, long term 5plus years. Ok what works and what does not. I was taught in military that cool dry storage is the best, ie never get it wet and not above 72 degrees F.

    So how about these sealed tubes for burial?? any good?

    What about other methods? Any experience or Ideas.
  2. Country101

    Country101 Active Member

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    Cool and dry is always good. Humidity doesnt go good with powders and primers. I figure anything that seals air tight ought to be good if it is not too permeable and you seal it while in low humidity.

    I would think what you are talking about would work, but I dont know all that much about them.

    Something that wouldnt sweat much if the temp changes would be good. And if it is going to be moved around(ie changing altitude and such) a pressure release valve wouldnt be a bad idea. Kinda like the gun boxes Pelican makes. That way when the pressure builds up it vents and you have less chance of any moisture condensating.
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2012
  3. dad2thebone

    dad2thebone New Member

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    Will surplus boxes work? or work well?
  4. targetacqmgt

    targetacqmgt New Member

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    If you mean surplus mil spec ammo boxes? IMO only if the gasket in the lid is not dried out and brittle.
  5. GunHugger

    GunHugger Well-Known Member

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    Sealed tubes for burial...NO.

    Condensation is the problem with that. But, there is a way to make it work.

    If, you vacuum out all of the air and replace the air with nitrogen. There are many ways to do this. The easiest is to install a refrigeration type valve into the tube and use a set of HVAC regulators/hoses, a vacuum pump and a tank of nitrogen. You don't want to pull a strong vacuum so as to not unseat primers, just enough to pull out the air, then replace the air with the nitrogen. If you don't have the equipment and know how hopefully you have a friend that's a HVAC tech that can do it for you.

    I have ammo from WWII that still fires just fine that has been stored in military ammo cans. I store all of mine in them. A lot of people place a few moisture absorbing desiccant packets in each can. A good idea but I take it one more step to be sure if the ammo is to be stored long term. I wait until the humidity is real low like in the winter here, then open the cans and remove the ones that have been in the can with fresh ones. And then mark them "do not open except for emergency" so that I don't open them when the humidity level is high. I might be a bit anal about it but I have...a lot of ammo stored.

    The metal military ammo cans are getting scarce around here since the military switched to plastic cans. The small ones were around $5 and the larger ones $7, now they have more than doubled and they are harder to find.
  6. targetacqmgt

    targetacqmgt New Member

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    Yeah the last cans I bought were from Korea-old M-1 30 cal ammo if I read the korean right.
  7. Country101

    Country101 Active Member

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    I need to get a few more of the large ammo cans. I like keeping my spare pistol rounds in them. I think I can fit 10 boxes in them(without dumping them out of the original packages). Always handy to have around for storing other stuff as well.
  8. carver

    carver Moderator

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    I just keep mine in the house. As long as the centrail air, and heat, is working, nothing to worry about.
  9. aa1911

    aa1911 Active Member

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    wholesale sports was hocking some ammo cans for $20, couldn't believe it. Scoop 'em up when ya can for a good deal, cripes they're getting stupid expensive!

    I'm gonna experiment with some homemade wooden crates I think for some stuff, military cans or cardboard boxes sealed up inside for air tight, wood crate for moving/handling.
  10. carver

    carver Moderator

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    My ammo is in plastic containers from Wally world. The 26gt size is about all the ammo these plastic containers will hold. Anything heavier I wouldn't trust when moving them. One for each caliber, and some calibers get more than 1 container. They stack good too!
  11. soundguy

    soundguy Well-Known Member

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    I'll tell you what I just started doing with my ammo stores.

    I keep the bulk of mine in ammo cans. I only get ones with good gaskets,a dn I lightly lube the gaskets with mineral oil or vasolene.

    I have taking to bagging the boxed and or loose ammo in ziplock baggies. and am making dessicant packs using an old bed sheet and a container of kao kitty litter.. cut a square, att a table spoon, pull corners up and add a twist tie.. looks like a rice packet or birdseed packet at a wedding. I toss one in each box.

    I'm waering cotton disposable inspection gloves that have been mistd with a lil rod/reel spray ( silicone ) and have a silicone wipe towel that I am cleaning all my loose ammo before storing..

    I'm beginning to dot he same with my handguns that are not for regular use. IE.. if I don't touch it.. if it's for colelction or end times. I clean it.. and bag it with a dry packet..

    I'm doing many of my rifles in a similar less sealed fashion. IE.. cleaning and lightly greasing or oilang the metals, then using the huge contractor bags and duct tape A few of them are getting the bedsheet treatment similar tot he guns wrapped in muslin.

    this will keep humidity, condensation and finger print damage over the years down.


    while doing this I'm taking a pic of each lot of ammo and gun for archival purpose ( insurance or otherwise..e tc )

    huge undertaking.. but good for the winter..

    if them space bags weren't sooo expensive I might stick a few in each bag and vacume up.


    ALso say some 10g and larger ziplock style products available online... those could be promising...
  12. dad2thebone

    dad2thebone New Member

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    great idea carver. I can set myself up on the cheap and have plenty quick.
  13. jedwil

    jedwil Well-Known Member Supporting Member

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    It's what I do as well. And, I'm needin' more.
  14. targetacqmgt

    targetacqmgt New Member

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    Just KAO kitty litter or will any do???
  15. soundguy

    soundguy Well-Known Member

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    kao as in kaolin (clay ) based... which many are.

    no wheat stuff.. or yesterdays news...(recycled newspaper)
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