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Old November 27, 2011, 08:13 PM   #1
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old powder?

I was reading the labels on some of my powders and the dates on some were from 08 and such. I want to ask a question how long should powder be kept? opened and in its original can of course. when should powders be disposed of?
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Old November 27, 2011, 08:17 PM   #2
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You are probably going to get lots of different answers.
But I can tell you that I use Unique powder that has been stored in its own container for 18 years and it works as well as it did when brand new. Never had any problems.

I suppose I should explain that I bought a huge quantity of the stuff and have some 8 lb containers un-open and one currently open and in use ...but all are the same age.

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Old November 27, 2011, 08:32 PM   #3
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I've got some powder that was packed in the '60s. IMR 4895, I bought a bunch of it bulk and surplus from gummint stocks. I'm down to my last couple of pounds and dreading having to buy more. However, it's still good and I still use it. Powder from '08 I wouldn't worry about it, all other things being equal.

Now that I think about it, I've got a jug of Unique and a jug of Reloder 15, both from about '08. I consider it new stock.
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Old November 27, 2011, 09:58 PM   #4
William T. Watts
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I have been using H4831 that is dated 1993, I still have one 8 pound jug that I opened a few weeks ago that is also dated 1993. Powder has a long life providing it is stored in a low humidity/cool environment. I have seen powder go bad in as little as 10-12 years that was improperly stored. William
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Old November 27, 2011, 10:02 PM   #5
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As long as it hasn't gotten damp, it should be good for a very long time.
From what I've heard Dupont powder from WWII was still being used up till just recently.
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Old November 27, 2011, 11:31 PM   #6
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Check out this recent thread for some advice on checking older powder;

I would not consider 2008 powder old. It's still fresh as the day it was made, and likely will be for a long time yet. When I go into a smaller shop and see older powder packaged in the metal cans I always buy it, and it always shoots fine.
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Old November 28, 2011, 12:12 AM   #7
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Good thread! I found a half can of Accurate #5 on a shelf in my gun room. It’s at least 8 years old. I opened it and the smell about knocked me over. Kind of an ammonia smell, maybe? I’m thinking about sprinkling it out in the corn field behind my house on a rainy day.
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Old November 28, 2011, 04:00 AM   #8
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Yeah, the sniff test will tell you if the powder's still good.
Not all powder smells the same, but if you got a can of x powder from 1998, and another can of x powder from 2007-they should smell the same. If they don't-one of them is probably bad.
Powder from as recently as 2008 I wouldn't even bother smelling it-it's fine.
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Old November 28, 2011, 07:51 PM   #9
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thanks folks. and im sorry it didnt occur to me that somethig similar to this was aready posted on another thread. probably shouldve looked before post. great news anyhow.
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Old November 28, 2011, 09:23 PM   #10
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Oh I thought you meant 1908. Yeah 2008 powder is probably about the same stuff as found on my LGS shelf today.
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Old November 28, 2011, 09:30 PM   #11
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I've got a can of Unique from the late 50s that still works fine. 2008 is not old powder in any way. It's all but brand new.
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Old November 28, 2011, 11:57 PM   #12
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I just loaded 1000rds of 45 with Winchester 452AA. I don't think that has been made for 25 years. Shot great. I have 8 lbs of it.

Now for some old powder I have. I don't intend to shoot these.

1 can of Dupont 4227 Lot #26
1 can of Dupont 4320 Lot #30
1 can of Dupont Bulk Smokeless from the same era.

Anyone have a guess on how old these are. They have never been opened. I am guessing they are over 50yrs old.
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