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Old January 8, 2013, 06:41 PM   #1
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Ammo production

Is there really a shortage, or more of an artificial scarcity.

I find it hard to believe that the big ammo mfg normally operate at close to their max capacity, so how much more can they produce.
Normal production X, ramped up production 3X? Did demand go up from Y to 10Y, I can't see demand going up by an order of magnitude.
Would be interesting when this all dies down to see how much ammo was purchased between mid Dec till whenever it settles down vs a historical chart.

I'm wondering if the ammo mfgs are looking at it this way. Would you rather produce 100 units at X or 60 units at 2X. If they churned out enough for supply to meet demand and bring prices down to Nov 2012 levels, then they would have over saturated their market and most people would be sitting on stockpiles (more than they normally would have) of ammo with no real need to buy more in the short term leaving the mfg with a lower demand than normal.

Any thoughts?
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Old January 8, 2013, 06:58 PM   #2
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I assume they were already running at capacity before the Conn. incident because the bulk sellers I have bought from for years were occassionally out of popular calibers. There are only 24 hours in a day and machines can only run at a certain capacity. You get a quick demand for 300% of capacity and something has to give. I have acquantences who haven't shot their guns in years running around buying anything at any price and this is why this artificial panic is in full swing. Those that planned ahead aren't buying anything at these inflated prices.
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Old January 8, 2013, 07:09 PM   #3
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There are less than 4000 people employed in the entire US making small arms ammunition.
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Old January 8, 2013, 07:10 PM   #4
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There isn't anything artificial about the current ammo shortage any more than a battery and bottled water shortage during mass power outages is artficial. Demand rapidly increased overnight, and has stayed far above supply. There were similar discussions after the 2008 election, but the demand is even higher now than it was then, fueled by panic buying.
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Old January 8, 2013, 07:39 PM   #5
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A manufacturer pays for their equipment whether it is making product are just sitting there, so most of them run pretty much at maximum capacity all the time. I also doubt that in this current climate any of them will be investing a lot in capital equipment to increase production.
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Old January 9, 2013, 06:13 AM   #6
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Hornady states on their main ammunition site that they have extra shifts & are working around the clock.
People need to understand that gun & shooting industry firms want to make $$$. They can't grind out the staffs or burn through the materials to manufacture ammunition.
I recall a printed ad from about 2 years ago where a Black Hills employee said he worked 60hr work weeks making ammunition. That sounds far-fetched but in 2013 I'd bet a lot of US factories have OT, .
These big companies(Winchester, Dakota Arms/Corbon, Hornady, Federal, etc) have huge profits too!

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