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Old January 27, 2009, 10:53 AM   #1
RetiredMajor
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What's the best way to Store Ammo for longer periods?

I'd like some advice from those of you who have figured this out. I want to store 9mm, 38 special and shotgun shells in my home. What containers work well? Do you do anything special with the ammo? It won't be a ton of ammo, but I want to keep it safe and dry.

Thanks for any advice!
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Old January 27, 2009, 11:24 AM   #2
Bud Helms
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Military ammo cans with the gasket seal still intact are the cheapest, best way to store ammo of all kinds. Just make sure the ammo won't see the temperature excursions experienced in outside weather. The mil ammo can does a good job of keeping humidity away, but where you store the containers is important.

Military ammo bunkers for long term storage are built into the ground for a reason. Basements in houses with earth on all four sides of the basement experience less temp change day-to-day and from night to day than above ground. The best environmental control is in the house, but then you add serious danger to a house fire.

The milsurp ammo cans are your best bet, no matter where you decide to store them.
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Old January 27, 2009, 11:33 AM   #3
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Mil-surp ammo cans are definately a good way to store them. Just out of curiousity, how long is 'long-term' storage?

I keep my ammo in a wooden cabinet next to my safe in my basement and have never had any trouble. Most of my ammo gets rotated fairly often, with none of it sitting around for (in the extreme case) more than a few years at most. All of the mil-surp ammo I have bought is kept in the cans, since it tends to sit around longer (since theres more of it).
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Old January 27, 2009, 11:34 AM   #4
johnwilliamson062
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I can't seem to find any surplus ammo cans that are in good condition. Does anyone know of a place that has them in stock? Lots of places have them back order or not in stock.
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Old January 27, 2009, 11:34 AM   #5
levrluvr
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I agree- go with the military cans IF you can find them with an a good seal. Many have deteriorating or missing seals, so buyer beware.
Plano makes a good ammo case with rubber o-ring seal and a good latch at the end; it holds quite a good bit of ammo, and can be found at most sporting goods depts for around $12-14.
It never hurts to throw a dessicant bag in there with your ammo.
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Old January 27, 2009, 12:05 PM   #6
Al Thompson
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If you have a garage, I've known several people who used old non-working refridgerators for ammo lockers. Put a light inside for moisture control and add a chain or hasp for security.
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Old January 27, 2009, 12:27 PM   #7
johnwilliamson062
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Old refridgerators was recommended by someone to me who has used it for years with great success. Keep the light bulb running and you are really in good shape.
armygear.net has them in stock.
No idea on their reputation, price is good. Will post up here once I receive mine if they are in good condition.
Shipping was atrocious b/c the size is large, I just bought some cheap surplus soft goods to fill up the boxes and the shipping did not increase.
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Last edited by johnwilliamson062; January 27, 2009 at 08:26 PM.
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Old January 27, 2009, 12:31 PM   #8
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Some of the plastic ammo cans that are sold by Kmart and others work well. Just look for the gasket in the lid to keep moisture out. I generally use metal army surplus ammo cans, but have a few plastic ones as well. You can often buy cans at gunshows or order them from places like Cheaper than Dirt. Shipping is a bit expensive for what you are buying. Use 5.56 or 50 caliber cans. Larger ones such as for gernades are a bit heavy if you fill them up. The metal cans stack nicely.

If your house is temperature controlled (heating and AC), you could probably just use a metal case such as you find at Home Depot and Lowes. You can buy quite large ones such as the Contractors version. Just depends on the volume you envision and if you have room.
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Old January 27, 2009, 06:38 PM   #9
fat old gun nut
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ammo cans

I buy mine at either flea markets for $3-5 or Army-Navy stores at $5-10'
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Old January 27, 2009, 07:36 PM   #10
brickeyee
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Metal cans with a decent gasket, and throw a desiccant pack in also.

Plastic is not nearly as water vapor tight as metal.
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Old January 27, 2009, 07:44 PM   #11
Kreyzhorse
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Is there any thing better than a surplus ammo can?

But as mentioned, those babies are flying out of gun shows every where.
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Old January 27, 2009, 08:06 PM   #12
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What about Grenade boxes?
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Old January 27, 2009, 08:26 PM   #13
johnwilliamson062
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grende boxes seem to be heavy from the descriptions i read on websites. I went with tall 50 cal boxes.
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Old January 27, 2009, 09:03 PM   #14
fastshotivy
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Do you know where I can order the Grenade boxes from?
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Old January 27, 2009, 09:05 PM   #15
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I prefer ammo cans, stored in a cool, dry place.
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Old January 27, 2009, 09:06 PM   #16
johnwilliamson062
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I honestly can't remember seeing an ammo can at a gun show since early October.
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Old November 1, 2009, 05:13 PM   #17
ceebee
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Homer bucket for ammo storage?

I know this is an OLD thread, but I just like other posters, I am finding it difficult to locate good used mil ammo cans. Because of this, I was wondering whether or not the orange "Homer buckets" may be a good ammo storage can. When purchased at Home Depot, they come with a well gasketed lid that can be hammered down with a mallet, totally sealing the bucket. I have used these buckets to seal small gas engines. To open it after sealing, you must tear the plastic strip around the lid circumference, just like on a new can of paint or spackling paste. For longer term storage, could one use a Homer bucket with a couple of packets of dessicant, or am I missing something here?
Thanks.
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Old November 1, 2009, 05:17 PM   #18
johnwilliamson062
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I don't think there would necessarily be a problem with that, but...

Most of us like to be able to get in and out of our ammo more easily than that. I guess if you are putting back 2k rounds of 556 for a rainy day that system would work well.
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Old November 1, 2009, 11:17 PM   #19
RockyMtnTactical
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You guys don't live near any military surplus stores? Most of them carry ammo cans and such...
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Old November 2, 2009, 12:21 AM   #20
FyredUp
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I am not sure if there are Fleet Farm stores in Ohio or not, but a few months back I bought ten 7.62mm ammo boxes for $3.99 a piece. They were all in great shape with only a couple of them having minor surface rust. Normal price was$5.99.

My luck at military surplus stores was that the ammo boxes were overpriced and in crappy condition. Pretty much the same experience at gun shows. Your experience may vary.
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Old November 2, 2009, 07:58 AM   #21
johnwilliamson062
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Well, there was a period around me, this thread being started during that period, where both the surplus stores and gunshows had very limited stock and low quality.
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Old November 2, 2009, 08:15 AM   #22
MTT TL
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Locating is not hard. Paying the ridiculous prices is the hard part.

Here for example:

http://www.thefind.com/sports/info-cal-ammo-cans

$8-20 a piece for .30 caliber cans? That is crazy talk.
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Old November 2, 2009, 11:32 PM   #23
reloader28
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Not everyone has a Foodsaver, but that forum came up a few days ago. Vac-pacing works good for ammo to and I put mine in wooden ammo crates I built. A little more time in building boxes but I needed them and they are cheap. Military boxes around here aint.
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Old November 3, 2009, 07:31 PM   #24
nolmsted
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military ammo cans with good seals is the way I store them. They are available at most gun shows.
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Old November 3, 2009, 07:39 PM   #25
FishersJohn
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vac packing

I tried vac packing loose 9mm ammo with the thought that it would keep it dry in any situation. Unfortunatly the bags I did lost their seal and allowed air into the bag. I believe the plastic was stretched too far over the rims of the casings and it made small holes. I could have just used zip lock bags and had the same result.
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