Anyone paying much attention to the news lately knows that gun sales are ‘booming’ so to speak. (Bad pun, I know 🙂 As it turns out a gun of any description, such as my favorite AR show above, a hand gun, a long gun, a shot gun or what have you is pretty much useless without ammunition.
Ammunition has run a cycle from relatively inexpensive and readily available to now more expensive and in many instances in short supply. All those millions of new gun owners are going to want ammunition and somewhere to shoot that ammunition to build, hone or develop some level of skill at arms.
A relatively few years ago, surplus military grade ammunition was both abundant and inexpensive. I know this because I bought and shot a whole heck of a lot of it. I bought cases of 7.62 NATO ammo for $0.14 a round and remember thinking I probably paid too much. Go figure. I still have some of that ammo by the way.
Anyway, I’ve been hand loading my own centerfire ammunition since the 1970’s while I was still in high school. I could only guess at how many rounds of I’ve produced. It will be well into the hundreds of thousands however. Suffice it to say I have the knowledge and have acquired an excellent assortment of tools (once in a lifetime purchase by the way) to produce a round of ammunition that is consistently more accurate and produces consistent velocities well beyond typical ‘factory’ ammo. I’ve tested it on a chronograph, so I know. Statistically, my hand loads are superior to factory loads.
I recently (early 2016) bought a 5 gallon bucket (~3000 pieces) of once fired .223/5.56 for USD $50. Shipping it in added some cost and all in, it cost me about $.03/piece for the 3000 pieces. Primers cost $39/thousand. I’m using surplus BLC-2 propellant that cost me $500 for 40 lbs and projectiles (excellent Berry’s FMJ for example) cost $0.085/each. Doing the math….I’m ‘making my own’ for under $.25/round and since I use the brass several times before recycling, I’m actually well under that number.
Current over the counter prices for a round of .223 for use in my Remington 700 VTR or AR on the low end for ‘plinking’ ammunition starts at $0.45/round and goes up quickly from there for hunting rounds on up to ‘match grade’ rounds.
Aside from the substantial monetary benefit of loading my own, there is, at least for me, a deep personal satisfaction in producing a shiny new round of ammunition with my own two hands and then using it!
You could correctly surmise that I’m an avid, high volume shooter and defender of the second amendment, life member of the NRA and outspoken critic of those who would deny me my 2nd amendment rights.
As our founders enshrined in our US Constitution:
‘A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.’
God bless both you and the United States of America.