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Stock up on ammo or stock up on reloading gear/components?

Discussion in 'Survival/Preparedness Forum' started by RMTactical, Aug 19, 2012.

  1. RMTactical

    RMTactical CLM

    Oct 7, 2000
    Behind an AR-15
    I think there is a place for both, but curious to see what you guys think. Any of you SHTF'ers reloaders?
  2. Carry16


    Sep 7, 2004
    SW Missouri
    I have a good supply of both, though I can't imagine being around long enough to need to reload for survival. My primary reload was in .308 where I was doing it for accuracy not cost savings. I wouldn't consider putting my reloads thru my M1A. As such I buy factory ammo for all my semi-auto firearms. Much more factory than reload on hand.

  3. Maine1


    Jul 20, 2007
    Come SHTF, you need AMMO, not components.
    Ammo assembled when you were focused on the task, not jittery from the zombies and canibals beating on the door.
    That said, definitley have the ability to reload everything you shoot, and plenty of primers, powder, ect.
    What you do not need, others will.
    Of course, once you aquire all this, load it up. It stores more compactly as ammo then in components.
  4. TangoFoxtrot

    TangoFoxtrot OIF 04-05

    Sep 10, 2008
    Nowhereville, USA
    Ammo on hand. No reloading in my plans. No time or equipment.
  5. Johnny Cache

    Johnny Cache

    Feb 16, 2012
    Good question.
    I actually have a reloading kit that I've never taken out of the box.
    I also have a ton of ammo saved up, but it is ultimately finite since I went with the most non-domestic round possible-the 5.45.:blondmoment: The 5.45 surplus has been cheap for a good run, but if outside supply is ever cut off, I'm simply ****ed. There's not even a domestic source for reloading components for that caliber.
    Anyway, that's why I've been considering a switch to a 5.56 AK, or possibly even an AR.
  6. Mr.Pliskin


    Apr 10, 2009
    For hunting calibers (308) I figure 500 rounds will last a very long time. For the fighting calibers I dont think I'd want to stay to collect the brass.
  7. Myth

    Myth Ornery Old Man

    Jun 3, 2005
    Go with ammo. Ammo is easier to transport, less susceptable to contaminations (moisture, oils, etc) that would render it useless, takes up less room in storage, requires less skill to work with, and most is always ready to go at a moment's notice.

    I do reload, and have for over 40 years, but I do so only for accuracy in certain rifles, for rifles chambered in wildcat rounds, or for those chambered for rounds that are too hard to find commercially. And frankly, factory ammo has improved so much in quality since I started handloading that I really don't see enough accuracy improvement anymore to warrant the time invested, so most of my reloading these days is for the wildcats and hard-to-find ammo. For combat, I would always recommend factory-loaded ammo where it is an option. Still, all of that said, I have dies and components for every caliber I own other than .22 rimfire, and I have equipment to take used .22 rimfire cases and process them into jacketed .224" or .243" bullets (Corbin is where I got this equipment if you are interested). Waste not, want not!

    Last edited: Aug 21, 2012
  8. IMO if you practice/use your weapons regularly then reloading can make sense depending on what caliber.

    If you are just storing for FUBAR times then just store factory ammo.

    I started reloading a few years ago because there was no ammo on the shelves.

    That is not the case these days.
  9. quake

    quake Millennium Member

    Aug 4, 1999
    Arkansas, USA
    My take on it, from a year or so ago

  10. kirgi08

    kirgi08 Watcher. Silver Member

    Jun 4, 2007
    Acme proving grounds.
    :goodpost: :agree:

    That being said,I gave up "reload" space for food/ammo and other needs.We have ammo and BP and other means ta reload.We do have components for barter.'08.
  11. mac66

    mac66 Huge Member Millennium Member

    Oct 28, 1999
    Blue Planet
    I would say ammo first. However, having the ability to reload is a plus in my book. Not only from the "I can make my own ammo" perspective but also the "I can make lots of different loads to fit my needs". I think it would have some value in the long term to have the ability to create custom loads. Sub sonics for example.

    I retired a year and a half ago and am now just dragging out all my reloading stuff. I now have time to play around again and create different kinds of loads.
  12. pugman


    May 16, 2003
    Like nearly everything, I have put way too much thought into this and settled strictly on stocking up on ammunition.

    It also depends greatly on what type of S is hitting your fan, how extensive (or paranoid) your plans are, do you have a stable AO, how much you shoot now, etc.

    To me, the only two reasons to reload are 1) cost 2) the skill set you acquire by reloading.

    Do you have children or an extended family? Do your stockpiling thoughts extend to them? I don’t know how long properly stored powder lasts…but I’ve shot 60 year old ammunition without a hiccup.

    If you have a reloading station, do you ever think you may need to move it? It would really suck living in a suburb of Atlanta, Chicago or any major metro area to find out due to some situation (riots, nuke, biological attack, whatever) you have 20 minutes to leave a house

    How much do you think you might be able to find, beg, borrow or steal in case the SHTF?

    Imagine a “reasonable” emergency happens right now in the form of a major biological attack, the inevitable failure of the Federal Government, terrorists set off a dirty bomb somewhere, etc. On a going forward basis, how much ammunition do you really think you will need for hunting, training and defensive purposes? Considering most people I know feel in this type of environment their main goal would be to avoid conflicts at all costs 1,000 rounds each of a defensive rifle and pistol caliber, shotgun rounds in slugs/shot mix and 5,000 rounds of .22LR would go a long way.

    My personal stash goes way above this but I have the financial means to buy it, the place to store it and the means to move it fairly quickly if I needed to.
  13. JDSTG58


    Feb 4, 2008
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2013
  14. Carry16


    Sep 7, 2004
    SW Missouri
    For me the only reason to reload was to gain the accuracy of hand loaded ammo. I only reloaded rifle ammo, mostly .308. I can consistently hit a 6" paper plate at 300 yards with my ammo, but not with store bought. YMMV
  15. Ruble Noon

    Ruble Noon "Cracker"

    Feb 18, 2009
    If you stock up on reloading gear and components, you have stocked up on ammo.
  16. actionshooter10

    actionshooter10 CLM

    Dec 29, 2006
    That's only 2 moa. ALL of my ammo shoots 2 moa out of my bolt guns. My reloads shoot .5 to 1 moa. Something sounds off in your setup.

    OP-Have both. I agree with Myth. Keep factory ammo on hand but have the means to reload everything you shoot.
  17. JimIsland


    Aug 1, 2011
    Re-loading is fine and dandy but whos going to be standing post while you are re=loading?? I gotcha Back!!
  18. cowboy1964


    Sep 4, 2009
    Not many keep tens of thousands of rounds of loaded ammo sitting around. Many here keep that much in components.

    It's analogous to keeping prepared food vs having a garden. The well-prepped person has both.
  19. I have Factory ammo for SHTF but I do reload. I reload for competition though. Now, if time permits I can kick up the powder charge and store them up before I have to leave, but reloads are for competition and factory for everything else.

    Do what I do, if you go to Walmart, every time you go there buy a box of ammo. It will add up quick.

  20. SDDL-UP


    Dec 4, 2006
    I have both.

    For SHTF you really want LOADED AMMO - you might never even get a chance to a magazine change in a serious SHTF scenario, much less reload components.

    In an EOTWAWKI you'll want both - components allow you to be more flexible for your end purpose. It's also cheaper once you get setup, but it takes a new reloader thousands of rounds to recouperate the initial expense.