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Storing ammo in the garage? Login/Join 
Don't Panic
Picture of joel9507
posted
Thinking about putting an ammo cabinet in the garage.

NC gets pretty humid, and I'm a bit concerned about potential long-term degredation. I don't have an epic amount, but I did stock up a bit during the recent unpleasantness, so some of it is likely to be there a while.

Should I be looking into putting the ammo (all factory loads, in original paper boxes) into something like this and throwing dessicant packs inside and putting the sealed boxes into the cabinet?

link - "Solid Tactical" tested .50 cal ammo can"

I'm open to alternatives. Any thoughts will be most appreciated.
 
Posts: 11596 | Location: North Carolina | Registered: October 15, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
Picture of az4783054
posted Hide Post
I'm in northern AZ with winter snow and monsoon summers of high humidity and daily rain.

I have amassed a bit of ammo since 2008. I store it in the oem boxes, with several DAMP RID tubs and a GOLDEN ROD within one of my safes in the garage.

None of the ammunition has exhibited any signs of deterioration.


*************************************************

16% of all internet posts are intended to bolster post count...and add to the credibility of the anonymous writer. Per a recent Russian Research Group study.
 
Posts: 7759 | Location: Somewhere north of a hot humid hell in the summer. | Registered: January 09, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Non-Miscreant
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Anything we tell you could be wrong. There are few guarantees in life. Military ammo is made to work. Its known going in that sometimes the storage conditions won't be good, the temps won't be too hot or too cold, humidity can be anywhere, including under water. Its all just a guess and commercial ammo isn't designed to be stored in as bad conditions as military.

The general rule is American made ammo is about as good as it gets. Commercial ammo made back in the 1950s is almost universally still good. Some exceptions for terrible conditions. Just keep all that in mind.

Now the variables start to come into play. Some ammo cans are better than others. Most are darn good, but the failure point is the gasket around the lid. It needs to be soft and pliable and not cracked. The more often the can is opened, the worse it gets. We can even argue about the various qualities of the moisture absorbing materials and if they work so well they suck more into the can, then hold it there.

I'm kind of foolish and stack mine in the basement. The bottom cans are on the floor, anyway. I'm old and weak and don't stack them over 6 high. Above that and it becomes hard to lift them. A lot depends on how heavy you make them. Some ammo is produced and sold in styrofoam separators, then into the cardboard. Some calibers seem to just fit into the .50 cal cans, while others waste space. Worst case is handloads dumped directly into the can. Its a chore to even lift 44 cal when the can is near full. Its better to put them in zip lock bags with the reload date, and reloading data. I've not had a problem.

Many folks new to the sport consider 3 or 5 years long term storage. I've still go some of my dad's reloads from the 1950s. I shoot them from time to time, just as an experiment. I expect them to go bang every time. As they always have. He never gave another thought to them being good or storage conditions.

If it were me, I'd try to figure out a way to keep the ammo indoors. Move a kid out to the garage instead! Smile OK, maybe not. Wives get pissy about that sort of thing.

My concern with your metal cabinet idea is ammo is heavy and can easily collapse the cabinet over time and temp changes. Maybe the biggest benefit will be hiding them from curious outsiders when the door is open. No one should see that you have ammo.


Unhappy ammo seeker
 
Posts: 15848 | Location: Kentucky, USA | Registered: February 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
Never any issues here after decades of ammo storage.

Ammo cans work great for this if you want to take that step.

------------------------------------


Proverbs 27:17 - As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.
 
Posts: 6043 | Location: Eastern NC | Registered: September 20, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
I keep ammunition indoors where it's climate controlled.

If you have it in a sealed can, humidity is irrelevant.
 
Posts: 1402 | Registered: September 13, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Don't Panic
Picture of joel9507
posted Hide Post
Thanks for the thoughts! Smile

Even after putting a cabinet in the garage, I will still have a decent amount indoors, climate controlled. The thought is use the garage cabinet for overflow for what won't fit in the indoor space, and put the oldest ammo out there and use from that first.

It's not so much a safe as a security cabinet - it isn't really sealed from outside air.

I like the ziplock idea a lot. I already have a couple of .50 cal boxes and will use those, and am now thinking of putting the rest of the ammo cartons individually into ziplock bags, each with a small desiccant pack that changes color when needing recharge. That will be a more efficient use of the shelving than just using .50 cal ammo boxes, which would leave a lot of empty space.
 
Posts: 11596 | Location: North Carolina | Registered: October 15, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Avoiding
slam fires
Picture of 45 Cal
posted Hide Post
I spread my ammo around,garage,kitchen,furnace duckwork closets and basement by firing range.
ammo cans mostly but cardboard boxes and zip bags
and some in one bathroom.
Reloading and buying is a sickness I have had for decades.
 
Posts: 21150 | Location: Georgia | Registered: February 19, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
Picture of sigfreund
posted Hide Post
Long ago I read a claim that the continuous temperature changes from storing unloaded cartridge cases outdoors would cause the brass to work harden and become brittle in time. A few weeks ago I ran across the same claim on a different site, and it was accompanied by photos of cases (300 Win Mag, IIRC) whose necks had cracked or separated during reloading after prolonged storage in outside varying temperatures.

I’m not sure of what to make of the claims and how they may relate to new unfired ammunition. It could be if the claims are valid that the problem doesn’t show up until the cases are resized, or perhaps it’s exacerbated somehow by the firing residues in the cases.

I have thousands of empty cases that I almost certainly will never reload. As long as I’m keeping them, though, I will nevertheless store them inside.




“Most men … can seldom accept the simplest and most obvious truth if it … would oblige them to admit the falsity of conclusions … which they have woven, thread by thread, into the fabrics of their lives.”
— Leo Tolstoy
 
Posts: 37255 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Member
posted Hide Post
I store my ammo on shelves in the basement. No ammo on the floor. Ammo mainly in original boxes. I also run dehumidifiers in the summer. Has worked well for me.


davemercer
 
Posts: 920 | Location: NE USA | Registered: July 02, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Non-Miscreant
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by sigfreund:


I have thousands of empty cases that I almost certainly will never reload. As long as I’m keeping them, though, I will nevertheless store them inside.


Maybe you have wider temp swings than many here. At least on the low end. Those living in AZ or TX maybe on the high side.


Unhappy ammo seeker
 
Posts: 15848 | Location: Kentucky, USA | Registered: February 25, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Private Dick
Picture of StorminNormin
posted Hide Post
If I was going to store ammo in the garage, then I would definitely put it in ammo cans with dessicant.

I keep all of my ammo inside the house. 5.56, 7.62x39, and .22 is all stored in ammo cans. All other ammo stays in factory packaging.




NRA Endowment Life Member
 
Posts: 5769 | Location: The Lone Star State | Registered: July 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
For real?
Picture of Chowser
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Some of my ammo is stored in the garage. All are in ammo cans and I toss in a pack of dessicant. The ammo is not in boxes. I usually dump a case of ammo into a can and cut up one box with the lot number and I write the date I bought it on. This way if there is an incident, I have the lot number of the ammo and approximate date.



Not minority enough!
 
Posts: 5114 | Location: South of Cleveland, OH | Registered: August 09, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
A Grateful American
Picture of sigmonkey
posted Hide Post
Every round is a 50/50 deal.

You never know, until the trigger is pulled.





"the meaning of life, is to give life meaning" I could explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you.
 
Posts: 36210 | Location: My Happy Little Tire Swing | Registered: December 20, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Freethinker
Picture of sigfreund
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by sigmonkey:
Every round is a 50/50 deal.



Sorta like the lottery: I have a 50 percent chance of winning, because either I’ll win or I won’t.

Wink




“Most men … can seldom accept the simplest and most obvious truth if it … would oblige them to admit the falsity of conclusions … which they have woven, thread by thread, into the fabrics of their lives.”
— Leo Tolstoy
 
Posts: 37255 | Location: 10,150 Feet Above Sea Level in Colorado | Registered: April 04, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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