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Old April 28, 2021, 08:54 PM   #51
valleyforge.1777
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Unclenick, et al:
So, how does the breakdown of powder change, if at all, in loaded cartridges? The gentleman's comment above this one states what had been my approach for many years: keep the powder until I want to load the cartridges. But lately I have been trying to load up as many of my components as I can for the "routine" cartridges that I shoot without ever changing long-ago settled-on load data, such as 9 mm, 223, and 357 Magnum. Should I expect that the powder in the loaded and stored ammo (cool, dry place, etc) will last longer in the loaded cartridges than if it remained, unloaded, in the stock bottles in which it came form the retailers over the years? Does it make any difference at all in terms of powder "longevity of useful life" if it is in loaded cartridges or unloaded in stock bottles?

Assuming non-corrosive primers and optimally stored finished loaded cartridges, should my ammo be useful for a very long time? We often hear of people shooting 30-'06 and 30-30 etc rounds from the 1960's that always go bang, right?
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Old April 28, 2021, 10:56 PM   #52
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Quote:
Should I expect that the powder in the loaded and stored ammo (cool, dry place, etc) will last longer in the loaded cartridges than if it remained, unloaded, in the stock bottles in which it came form the retailers over the years? Does it make any difference at all in terms of powder "longevity of useful life" if it is in loaded cartridges or unloaded in stock bottles?
depends on how you store your ammo . Mine is stored in ammo cans with a desiccant inside . If that can gets opened often-ish the desiccant gets changed out . I'd think that loaded ammo will last quite awhile . IMHO the bigger issue is not keeping track of the powder lot numbers once the bottles are loaded into cartridges . Do you label your loaded rounds with the powder lot number as well ? If not "oops" because when ( and it will happen at some point ) you will have used a powder that has been recalled in those stored loaded cartridges and now what ??? You just hope it's been all shot up ???

Yes I do add the powder lot number to my ammo that is designated for long term storage . There's a reason they have lot numbers on factory ammo and it's not only if they were loaded wrong . They need to be able to track there loaded ammo incase the powder manufacture calls them up and says "we may have a problem with powder-A lot # 12345 . You might want to recall all the ammo you loaded that in .
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Old April 29, 2021, 01:29 AM   #53
rc
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I have powder that is 20 to 25 years old from when I purchased it and some newer. I've used powder I got with reloading equipment and if I have any questions about a powder, I burn it in a pile without constriction. Most modern powder stored in stable environment can last many decades and still be good for reloading as long as you keep it sealed when not in use. Powder will draw moisture from the air over time. I repackage powder from kegs I've bought in the past into smaller containers I label after I use a few pounds with as little air as possible. That way it stays fresh for longer.
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Old April 29, 2021, 01:54 PM   #54
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Seems like a cop-out ... But I keep it until it runs out.... The only powder I had that I turned into fertilizer was a can of rifle powder once in all the years of reloading. Had a bad smell and a 'rust' colored powder dusting over the normal black. It was in a metal can. Our climate is dry and cool even during the summer, so have no concerns.
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Old April 29, 2021, 02:45 PM   #55
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Had a bad smell and a 'rust' colored powder dusting over the normal black. It was in a metal can.
The metal cans are the major problem. Seems to be some chemical reaction going on there with the metal.

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Old April 29, 2021, 03:06 PM   #56
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A friend had a few hundred .357's to load, so we used most of an old one pound can of PB to create a mild 125 gr. hp load. That powder was in a metal can, purchased in 1983...and worked fine. The only powder I've seen eat through a metal container, was RE-7, and others of the same age, sitting on the same shelf, still look fine, 20 years later.
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