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Does old ammo go bad?

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Stored reasonably well and no corrosion evident they are probably OK.

Recently had a 45 Colt round accidently get into my reloading to-be-cleaned pile. Ran for 45 minutes in my ultrasonic cleaner :s0001:.

When I took it out and dried the outside I took it apart and there was no evidence of water intrusion at all. It was not worth it to me to re-assemble and fire just to see so I discarded the primer & powder but am guessing that it would have been OK.
 
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Stored reasonably well and no corrosion evident they are probably OK.

Recently had a 45 Colt round accidently get into my reloading to-be-cleaned pile. Ran for 45 minutes in my ultrasonic cleaner :s0001:.

When I took it out and dried the outside I took it apart and there was no evidence of water intrusion at all. It was not worth it to me to re-assemble and fire just to see so I discarded the primer & powder but am guessing that it would have been OK.
A good crimp probably prevented that water intrusion. I wonder for semi-auto rounds like 9mm that are not crimped, if any water would have made it in.

There are some youtube videos out there about shooting 10, 20 year old ammo... most of the time it should work. However, do be prepared for the off-hand chance of a squib.
 

AndyinEverson

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I have shot ammo that was WWII vintage and it worked fine...
If not subject to extreme fluctuations in temperature and excessive dampness , you should be good to go.

Now you may have some variations in velocity and such over time...but not enough to matter for most shooting.
Also as noted , be watchful for a squib...
Andy
 
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Just to add to the consensus, it's all in how it was stored. The oldest ammo I've shot was dated 1914. It fired fine.

I have a bunch of WWI .45 acp ammo in my meager collection. Two years ago I picked out 7 loose rounds from 1917. They were all dull and some had a little tarnish. All 7 fired and cycled fine through a 1911. I shot one across the chronograph and the rest at a target. The velocity measured right what it should have and accuracy was acceptable. Not bad for 100 year old ammo.
 
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Not that I've found, and I'm not even so sure proper storage has much to do with it.
Now if you happen to find the gear one of the members here claims he lost in a boating accident, :rolleyes: well, under water stuff might be another story. Even then, only maybe.
 
The main issue with the military stuff 70's on the back is they may have corrosive primes in them. Just something to keep an eye on when shooting the old military stuff.

As for my Grandfathers 270 hand loads he did in 67' four years before I was born? Shoots great, thanks, Grandpa!

My son loves the 50+ rounds of 9mm we found in an old box, I hand loaded on my single stage RCBS press back in College 26yrs ago. I shot and loaded the h3ll out of that brass. You can find 8+ ejection marks on the headstamps! Stuff still shoots but keeping it as a reminder of the simple days. (Fit and had hair on my head, not my back)
 
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I did have some trouble with some old 30-06 rounds that I reloaded when I was first starting out 30 years ago. A high percentage of them had cracks in the necks. They were all fine back when I loaded them, but it was old GI brass that I didn't anneal and I guess it got brittle over the years. A lot of them I could just pull the bullets out by hand, so I salvaged the components on those.
 

saxon

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have shot 100 year old ammo in 90 year old guns... no problem if stored properly,
have also shot 50 year old WWII ammo that FTF almost every round,,,, all about storage and manufacture...
 

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