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Old November 29, 2011, 10:20 AM   #1
Habaz72
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Condition of surplus ammo

This isn't really a reloading topic so I apologize in advance and please move it to the correct forum if it requires it...

Over the weekend I opened a bulk pack of Mil Surp 7.62 NATO ammo that I purchased online a while back. It was a 200 rnd pack and I've only checked 6 of the 10 20 rnd boxes so far, but I'm pretty depressed at the results. I found that about 1/3 of the ammo I checked seemed in good condition, no signs of discoloration or corrosion. 1/3 had discoloration which I suspect may be the starting of corrosion on the brass and 1/3 had definite corrosion and I think is unsafe to use.

I'm at work right now and can't post pictures but I shall try to describe the ammo. The discoloration I'm referring to is a darker color and still feels smooth. The corrosion is green or white and feels rough. The corrosion and discoloration is toward the bottom of the cases and some is on the rim and even onto the primer in some rounds. I think that would be a good chance for a case rupture and blowback into my face or at the very least, a good bit of damage to my very fine PTR 91.

I think I'm going to pull the bullets from the corroded pile and possibly fire off or soak the primers then scrap the brass. I'd like feedback on whether the discolored ammo is safe or if I need to post more info or pictures when I get home. I may keep the discolored lot and just use my food saver to vacuum seal it and hope for the best. I will also vacuum seal the good ammo. I don't currently reload .308/7.62N, but I do have some brass laying around. I'd have to do a bit more reading and buy more equipment to put the salvaged bullets to use, or I may ebay/craig's list them.
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Old November 29, 2011, 02:23 PM   #2
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I would pull a couple of the ones with the corrosion on them, if the power is clumpy I would dump the whole lot. If it's good, try picking the corrosion off and see if it's into the brass. If it isn't then shoot it up, if it is don't use it and put it in the recycle bin.
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Old November 29, 2011, 06:42 PM   #3
Shotgun693
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I used to buy a lot of surplus ammo, mostly .308. I never had problems like this. I even got 200 rds of Tracer picked up at the range at Ft Hood that was in great shape. You might look for a better supplier.
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Old November 29, 2011, 11:35 PM   #4
Charlie_98
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There is some spotted (and corroded) surplus running around right now, including either DAG or MEN (certain lots.) Most of the folks just use steel wool and clean it off (unless it's etched into the brass) and shoot it.

To me it would depend on the headstamp and age; when in doubt, do what the others suggested... pull a few bullets and see how it looks inside.
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Old November 30, 2011, 01:08 AM   #5
hk33ka1
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I would pull some of the corroded bullets and look at the powder and inside of case. Mybe deprime one or two and tumble them to see how bad the corrosion is then make a decision based on the findings.
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Old November 30, 2011, 08:40 AM   #6
Habaz72
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I was considering using a polishing bit on the dremel to clean off the corrosion but then thought could turn disastrous quickly. I'll clean it with steel wool to check it out, then maybe pull a few to see. I can't deprime them, they're berdan and I don't have anything I could use to do it.

The ammo came from cheaper than dirt, the 200 rnd bulk pack sealed in the green heavy duty plastic material. I don't remember the headstamp, I'll check that when I pull some and try to clean off the corrosion. I'm beginning to think the Federal softpoint ammo from Walmart is a better deal.

Thanks for the replies. Truly a great source of information.
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Old November 30, 2011, 10:20 AM   #7
Charlie_98
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Quote:
The ammo came from cheaper than dirt, the 200 rnd bulk pack sealed in the green heavy duty plastic material. I don't remember the headstamp, I'll check that when I pull some and try to clean off the corrosion.
I think that's the DAG/MEN ammo... it's recent manufacture (1990's) and the general consensus was to go ahead and shoot it after removing the obvious corrosion blooms with steel wool (and discarding anything that has deteriorated into the brass.) The corrosion is hit or miss, some have it and some don't; it's one of the reasons I've been avoiding it, even though I live about 10 miles from CTD and those nice green battlepacks stare at me from the shelf everytime I go in.

I stick with RG from AIM...
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Old November 30, 2011, 12:57 PM   #8
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Did you save your receipt? Call them up and ask for a refund if it's not to late.

Be safe!
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Old November 30, 2011, 01:00 PM   #9
rex_lee
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You couldn't pop this in the tumbler for an hour? I know there is some debate as to tumbling live rounds (not so much being unsafe but changing the consistency of the rounds by making the powder finer), but it IS done. Might be a thought.
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