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Old June 8, 2009, 02:44 PM   #401
Jekyll
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OK, here's a number for you: I haven't been active with handguns for 10 years, concentrating on rifles and shotguns instead. Since January of this year, I've shot 5,000 rounds of 9mm, .38 special and .44 special. My new wife started shooting handguns this year when I restarted. She has shot about 3,000 rounds of 9mm and .38 special. We have 2,000 rounds of 9mm and .38 special in stock for the summer. That is 10,000 rounds of demand that wasn't there last year, not to mention the primers and powder I'm now adding to sustain the added handgun activity and get ready for the winter handgun season.

As we became more active with handguns, our rifle shooting picked up as well because we are going to the range more. We have increase rifle activity by an additional 1,000 rounds of centerfire and another 1,000 of rimfire in the last 3 months.

I'm just one guy who got more active due to the Obama administration. We each bought a high capacity 9mm (XDm-9) with 10 mags each - just in case.

I'm an example of the increase in demand and I offer no appologies. I pay my way now instead of shooting free ammo provided by the Marine Corps. As a retired Marine, I cherish my right to shoot as much and as often as I can afford.
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Old June 8, 2009, 04:40 PM   #402
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You are paying your way and doing nothing wrong. It is great your wife is into it. That is a A plus in my book. My wife also hunts with me. I feel sorry for the new reloaders, comp shooters, and folks who just like shooting alot. They have always been there, and that is not causing this. I use to be able to get what I needed when I ran out. No problem. You cant do that anymore. I am not saying to hoard but you need the componets to reload. It is hard just buying 22 rimfire bullets. I do believe this will pass but when. Like I said before what is causing this?
1.) Is it folks hoarding?
2.) Is it the war? We been through those before?
3.) Is it some type of plot?
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Old June 9, 2009, 08:10 AM   #403
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About 2 months ago I would buy any primer that came my way. I've now got about 7,000 primers in every variety (not separating Magnum from non-Magnum) and have stopped buying. Yesterday Natchez had a bunch of stuff in all at the same time and Midway had small pistol magnum in. Grafs called and wanted to know if I wanted a partial order. For the first time in 2 months, I bought none and I declined Grafs.

I think the crunch is letting up. The bigger dealers are getting shipments and I suspect people are reaching their limit. Natchez had primers listed for 2-3 hours before they all got bought out. It used to be less than an hour.
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Old June 9, 2009, 09:09 AM   #404
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What I am talking about is a simple matter of data. Show the data of where all the ammo is going. It's no more difficult than that (anecdotal evidence is simply that). Please remember that in both of my previous posts, I freely admitted that I do not know the data. If I have missed the ammo industry or NRA or NSSF or Army press releases of the ammo "demand" data then I sincerely apologize to all who felt "uncomfortable" with what I said. You may calm your nerves over the future availability of ammo by referring to those press releases (please send me the link to that data when you find it).

You said, "your argument has nothing but your own supposition to back it up" That's absolutely true. This thought or supposition came to me just a couple of weeks ago. Prior to this thought I was blaming the American people like everybody else. Simply because someone has a thought doesn't make them (or the thought) a conspiracist. True conspiratorialists don't desire to be wrong. I want to be wrong!

But of O-N-E thing I have no doubt. The Democrats (with some Republican help), Obama and all Socialists, Marxists and big government liberals are firmly in the anti-gun camp and that is NOT a conspiracy theory.
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Old June 9, 2009, 11:03 AM   #405
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The military consumption can be checked by looking up their past RFQ's. Those are public. I do know they placed several times normal order levels at one point (I'm thinking 2007) because the stockpiles had diminished. The military is undoubtedly the original source of the shortages. This Army Times article from two years ago has some details explaining the situation.

Gunweek's June 1, 2009 issue, page 3, Business section, reports a number of relevant things:
The excise tax collection for firearms is up. They are an indicator of gun sales and they show the fourth quarter of 2008 tax revenues were up 31% from the same period in 2007.

For this year, quarterly reports from the manufacturers are all you can go by. Ruger reported a 55.5% increase over the same quarter in 2008. Olin says Winchester sales are up 20%. Sig got contracts from the U.S. Military worth $306M, so they will be busy and their prices are unlikely to go down any time soon.

Some of the makers are addressing the added demand. Colt has over $3M in new equipment. Modern CNC stuff they say they should have got a decade ago, and expect to increase production from 90 guns a day to 150.
I've heard elsewhere that CCI has a new primer line coming up either this month or next.

So right now, the extreme shortages are due to extra high consumer demand added on top of military demand. None of that investing in factory capacity would be done if demand was expected to fall completely back to old levels. So I expect we will be competing to buy supplies for awhile yet.

Incidentally, if you had invested in gun company stock in November last year, you would be sitting pretty right now. S&W went from just under $2 to a little over $7 last month. Currently about $5. Ruger bottomed at about $5 in mid-November and is currently $12. Wish I'd had the foresight to sell my IRA stocks and funds off before the election and to buy gun companies just after. Hindsight is indeed 20/20.
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Last edited by Unclenick; June 9, 2009 at 09:51 PM. Reason: typos fixed
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Old June 9, 2009, 12:19 PM   #406
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"The Army’s demand for small caliber ammunition has soared from 426 million rounds in 2001 to 1.5 billion rounds in 2006"

AMAZING........that's over 350% increase!!!!! I had not read nor heard any numbers like that before.

Thanks unclenick for that link to the Army Times article. It comes very very close to what I am thinking about who is responsible for the lion's share of this ammo problem....and that was 2 years ago. If we only knew what the Army's 2009 demand is..... AND what the civilian demand (in number of rounds) is. You said, "The military consumption can be checked by looking up their past RFQ's. Those are public." I will try to do that but I wonder if there is any published data from the ammo companies themselves about their output (of loaded rounds) and down which conveyor belt those rounds go? In my simple way of thinking, if the gov't continues buying like this, the waiting line for components and finished ammo in the consumer market will not decrease anytime soon and prices will only continue to rise.
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Old June 9, 2009, 05:55 PM   #407
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If you want some more information on what is going to happen with ammo supplies in the future, this was just posted over in General Discussion.

The page of interest is page 7:

http://www.dtic.mil/ndia/2009infantr...iiGrassano.pdf

Obviously, that presentation is based on the US winding down combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Those plans, of course, could go to hell if something else brews up. Like North Korea.


As I've said before, have said repeatedly, and will say again, the ONLY grand, vast, Government conspiracy that is keeping ammo in short supply right now is the Government's desire to ensure that our troops overseas NEVER see the kind of ammunition shortages that hit the European and Pacific theaters at various times during World War II.
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Old June 9, 2009, 10:03 PM   #408
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Mike,

You're last point deserves double exclamation points!! We got very close this time, too. The jump in 2006/2007 orders apparently occurred because the stockpiles diminished to the point the National Guard had to start canceling live fire training exercises to conserve the supply for our troops in theater. The Clinton administration apparently let the stockpiles decline. I hope we don't make that mistake again.


Ilbert,

I think a decisive factor has been that Lake City buys its powder and mil-spec primers on contract. AFAIK, they just make the brass and some of the bullets then assemble and inspect and package the ammunition. That's why primers have been scarce. CCI has been up to its ears making its M41, M34, and No. 35 Mil-Spec primers for military demand.

The thing that jumped out at me in the Army Times article, though written in the first quarter of 2007, is it already mentioned commercial outlets being told there would be a year's delay in shipment of some products. That means we not only have post-2008 election panic, but even without that there was already pent-up demand waiting to be satisfied.

This has simply been a perfect storm for shooting supply shortages. We'll just have to weather it.
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Old June 10, 2009, 10:58 AM   #409
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Primers........ The Truth

I cannot/will not give the name of the source, but its a very large Distributor and we're a long time Vendor with them.
Primer manufacturers have not slowed down production one iota. The perceived shortage is specifically because of new, never before reloaders who are in a panic. Shipment amounts to our distributor have not changed at all. They still come in in the normal numbers and frequency, but the numbers of would-be reloaders has increased literally 20 fold.
These are first time buyers who have never reloaded but don't want to miss having the option to roll their own ammo. Add this to the normal reloader demand and you have what now is. Based on years of normal sales and supply, there is no shortage. Based on the new demand, there is a supply wait.
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Old June 10, 2009, 11:18 AM   #410
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You may be right.
I have posted this query on other forums, and have yet to get an affirmative reply; does anyone know someone who is hoarding ammo or ammo components? And by that, I don't mean someone who shoots 500 rounds a week and has 50,000 primers, I mean someone who sold their timeshare and bought a million primers? Or reinvested their retirement in Belgian surplus .30-06? I don't, and don't think I know anyone who does. That would tend so support the theory that it's not SHOOTERS who are causing the problem, but speculators.
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Old June 10, 2009, 12:20 PM   #411
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I know several people who made rather dramatic purchases of ammunition and/or components in the days after Obama won the election last November.

I made a number of lesser purchases, including a bunch of magazines for my AR.

Hoarding doesn't have to be huge purchases. It's purchases above and beyond what a person would normally use in a given time span.

If someone shoots 500 rounds a year, but purchases 5,000 primers, that's hoarding.

A lot of people making relatively small purchases like that can have a huge impact on availability.
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Old June 10, 2009, 01:13 PM   #412
verti89
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"Based on years of normal sales and supply, there is no shortage. Based on the new demand, there is a supply wait."

So current supply doesn't meet current demand, and that is not a shortage??
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Old June 11, 2009, 12:52 PM   #413
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What I am sick of is all the %$#^9 guessing about why this is happening? Others have asked:

1). Is it hoarding?
2). Military ramp-up?
3). Metals price paid for brass\steeel by ammo makers?
4). Lack of materials?
5). Global warming, el nino, voodoo, George Bush, Obama? (fill in the blank!!!)

There HAS to be a straight MAIN cause of this, and the folks who should be answering are the ammo comanies, but they ain't saying SQUAT! Any gun shop or dealer you talk to has a different theory. SOMEONE knows the real reason why I cannot get any primer, online or local!!!!!

I am a simple gunowner who like to go to the range every other weekend and squeeze off a couple hundred rounds and protect my property. If there is something wrong with that, then I need to move to the %##^&%$ moon because America is no longer the place I used to love. :barf:
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Old June 11, 2009, 12:57 PM   #414
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And what really steams my clams? If these ammo manufacturers cannot keep up with demand, here is a novel idea:

HIRE MORE WORKERS AND DOUBLE YOUR LINES!!!

You will make a KILLING!
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Old June 11, 2009, 01:18 PM   #415
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The machinery needed to produce small arms ammunition takes quite awhile to build and costs tens of millions of dollars.

I sincerely doubt that the manufacturers would want to double their lines simply to draw down a temporary situation only to be left with surplus, idle machinery when everything returns to normal.
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Old June 11, 2009, 02:43 PM   #416
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Fishman,

Thanks for making a simple statement in a colorful way. It goes straight to the point I have of "where's it all goin ???!!!. Most are content to blame themselves and their fellow shooters (mostly their fellow shooters). There is little doubt about the multi-faceted nature of this problem and I think that your list of items are all part of the mix. The more I find out that we don't know the numbers, coupled with your point......."the folks who should be answering are the ammo comanies, but they ain't saying SQUAT!" The more worried I get.
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Old June 11, 2009, 03:38 PM   #417
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You know, there's a lovely conspiracy theory board on the other side of the internet, where everyone blames Obama, the Tri-Lateral Commission, the Build-A-Burgers, the Illuminati, the Masons, and others, for all of the various ills, foibles, excesses, incidents, etc., of modern society, and where no talk that dares dispute the very essence of the conspiracy foundation is permitted, because the purveyor is a tool of "The Establishment" that serves only to keep everyone and everything down...

This is a statement from the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

You may have heard of them, they're one of the industry groups serving the FIREARMS and AMMUNITION industries. They work closely with the individual corporate entities.

There's some interesting data...

ANSWERS TO AMMUNITION AVAILABILITY QUESTIONS
NSSF has received numerous calls regarding shortages of ammunition. Many of these callers have expressed concern that the supply of ammunition is not able to keep up with the current demand.

In order to provide the best information possible on the issue of ammunition availability, NSSF interviewed ammunition manufacturers across the United States. Here's what we have learned:

Is there truly a shortage of ammunition?

The shortage of ammunition is real and is caused by several factors including:

A significant spike in consumer demand

Law Enforcement demand for training and readiness

Department of Defense demand for training and readiness

Higher prices from commodities

What calibers are in the highest demand?

The high demand for ammunition extends across caliber lines. The increase can be seen in most handgun, rifle and rimfire ammunition and on certain shot shell products such as buckshot.

What are manufacturers doing to keep up with demand?

In order to help keep up with demand for ammunition, manufacturers are working at full capacity (24/7). It is believed that any ammunition shortage is likely a temporary issue; however, it will take time for supply to catch up with demand.

How long will it take for supply to catch up with demand?

While it is believed that supply will be increasing, the great unknown is what demand will be later in the year. Since there is no way for manufacturers to predict how long consumer demand will be sustained at its current, unprecedented level, it is impossible for manufacturers to forecast the timeline for when the current backlog will begin to improve.



Then, there's this article and graphic, which shows the rather incredible increase in the number of NICS checks from April 2007 to April 2009.. There is similar data for other months that shows a similar significant increase as well.

I'm sure, however, that this is going to fall on deaf ears, that it will just be seen as another obfuscation by the nefarious forces of evil that are conspiring to strip us of our Second Amendment rights by allowing us to buy guns but by drying up the supply of ammunition and components...

As for your final contention that the ammunition companies should be spilling their guts about where every round of their production is going...

That's foolish.

If they were doing that, you'd likely be screaming bloody damned murder about how they're spending FAR too much time talking and not enough time producting, and how THAT is a conspiracy that's being pushed by the Obama-Tri-Lateral-Shriners Tricontinium.

The manufacturers participate in industry groups specifically for things like this. These groups speak for the ENTIRE industry. SAAMI, NRA, NSSF, and others are, on various subjects, spokes organizations for the ENTIRE industry.

It's not beneficial for the individual companies to issue a cartridge-by-cartridge, minute-by-minute accounting for where the proceeds of a PRIVATE CORPORATION are going. They have better things to do than hold your hand and mop your brow.

But, each of the individual companies has a PR office. Since you're so damned sure that this is a conspiracy and that these companies are participating in a furtherance of evil, why don't you give the individual companies a call and sweat it out of them?

Or is it simply easier for you to make unfounded claims of conspiracy and cry wolf instead of believe what the industry representatives, the news media, and your eyes (if you've gone to a gunshow and seen the crowds and the sales that are taking place) are telling you already?

No matter what you learned from the individual companies, I'm sure it wouldn't be enough "proof" for you and would only be seen as an indicator of the further existence of an evil conspiracy designed only to strip us of our Second Amendment rights.

Enough. Just enough.

You've had your say, you've cried conspiracy, you've claimed to have seen the wolf in all of its evil, soul sucking glory, but yet you have NOTHING to back it up.

So ENOUGH.

Anything further on the unfounded claims of conspiracy will be summarily deleted.
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Old June 11, 2009, 05:16 PM   #418
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As I said in my earlier post, this is simply a perfect storm for shortages the same way the banking and finance and housing situations created a perfect storm for fiscal trouble last year. An unfortunate coincidence of different market forces all showing up at just the wrong moment. It will eventually go away. Right now there would be so much money to be made by anybody selling components that if there were a magic switch somewhere that could speed up production, it would already have been pulled.
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Old June 11, 2009, 08:06 PM   #419
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Mike is 100% correct. That is what I have been getting at. Fine if you shoot that much, but if your a casual reloader shooter like myself who maybe reloads 1,000 per year and buys 10,000 primers that is hoarding. A few weeks ago I could have bought some large rifle primers, but thinking about what I had I passed on it. Just did not need it.
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Old June 11, 2009, 08:24 PM   #420
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Hum. I shoot about 5000 rounds a year. I have 30,000 primers and 20 pounds of powder. I guess I'm hoarder? Oh well. Guilty as charged. Or perhaps I'm just a guy who likes a little insurance? I'm glad we've got the primer police out and about.
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Old June 11, 2009, 08:38 PM   #421
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SwampYankee, did you buy all of that material because Obama was elected, or have you been buying it all along?

I ask, because many of us noticed the price increases of things some time ago and began purchasing then. Now, many of us have no need to try and buy what is not now available.

Point is, you can take what Mike said out of context and be offended, or you can view it in context and not worry one iota.

Me? I've got lots of ammo loaded up, in several calbers. Handgun and rifle. I've got lots of powder, primers, brass and bullets, waiting to be loaded. I'm just not shooting quite as much as I used to, in order to preserve my supplies.

That doesn't make me a "hoarder" nor am I offended by what Mike wrote.
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Old June 11, 2009, 11:14 PM   #422
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If one has a general idea of how the ammunition industry works then the shortages make a lot of sense.

The absolute BEST way to keep the shortages going is to keep screaming about (nonexistant) conspiracies. The more concerned & freaked out gun owners there are, the more panic buying there will be and the longer the shortages will last.

When everyone calms down, ammunition will become available again and the prices will come down.
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Old June 11, 2009, 11:37 PM   #423
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Quote:
When everyone calms down, ammunition will become available again and the prices will come down.
I've been counting to 10 and taking deep breaths, trying to remain calm. Just 3 weeks ago, I saw 3 boxes of .45ACP rounds and 2 of 9mm sitting on the shelves at Walmart and I kept going.

But then last weekend I had a relapse when I saw two bricks of .22LR. I was going to buy just one but I was weak. I bought both.
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Old June 11, 2009, 11:50 PM   #424
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Well said, Mike

Well said. Thank you. My thoughts on it are the shortage is indeed created and being sustained primarily out of fear and speculation. Lately, I have been seeing handgun ammo on the shelves of Wally World that have been bare for the better part of several months. I believe that many people have been speculating and have either run out of money to buy more or are starting to take their profits. Many of the hoarders (and even low-volume reloaders) have reached their new comfort zone for quantities on hand, and many others can no longer afford to purchase reloading supplies. AND THAT'S JUST FROM THE RETAIL SIDE! I have recently seen many signs that the gap between supply and demand is shrinking. It will probably still be a while before prices get back to where they were even one year ago, but at least they are headed in the right direction.

Everybody just needs to take a deep breath or two and relax a bit. THINGS WILL RETURN TO A MORE NORMAL STATE SOON.
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Old June 12, 2009, 03:34 AM   #425
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Ain't got no primers.... A little advice

I learned during the last shortage that supplies go poof when people panic. Primers are the most important single component to keep on hand. You can cast your own bullets, recycle your lead, recycle your cases and cut back on your powder charges but you can't light off a single round without a primer. It's no wonder they are in short supply. Primers take up much less space than loaded ammo to store and are less costly to aquire. If stored properly primers will last a lifetime. Hopefully you yungins will learn so that when this happens again, you won't be caught with your pants down.
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