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Old 02-11-2018, 01:13 PM
MartyH
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How Long can I store Norma,SK, Geco 22lr?



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I have a lifetime supply of the typical average plinking ammo with wax lube or copper washed. As I begin to use and replace the average stuff with the better target and match ammo, does anyone have personal experience or knowledge as to how well the lube on SK, Norma, RWS and Geco stores?
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  #2  
Old 02-11-2018, 01:38 PM
Empe
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I have a couple of bricks of the old gold boxed SK Standard Plus that's probably 5 yrs. old . The lube still looks fresh on it .
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Old 02-11-2018, 05:51 PM
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I have some thirty year old RWS that looks horrible now. Bullets covered with white stuff.
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Old 02-11-2018, 05:59 PM
Empe
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The best solution is to use it for what it was intended for ...shooting , not storing.
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Old 02-11-2018, 07:04 PM
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I'd store a good amount and just rotate stock... and if the SHTF you have ammo to shoot
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  #6  
Old 02-11-2018, 08:03 PM
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Frankly, all this concern about how old ammo is fascinates me. Ammo stored at room temperature should be fine for longer than you will live. In fact, just last weekend I shot a box of 12 gauge that I reloaded when I was in high school, and it shot just fine. When was I in high school? Well I graduated in 1961.

I don't have an .22 left from that time period, but if I did I wouldn't worry about shooting it. I've shot military surplus .30-06 that was in excess of 50 years old and it shot fine.
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Old 02-11-2018, 08:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RED HORSE View Post
Frankly, all this concern about how old ammo is fascinates me. Ammo stored at room temperature should be fine for longer than you will live. In fact, just last weekend I shot a box of 12 gauge that I reloaded when I was in high school, and it shot just fine. When was I in high school? Well I graduated in 1961.

I don't have an .22 left from that time period, but if I did I wouldn't worry about shooting it. I've shot military surplus .30-06 that was in excess of 50 years old and it shot fine.
The issue is lubricant, and being externally lubed, the .22 rimfire is very different than center fire metallic cartridges, and obviously little in common with shotshells. Primer and powder compositions in the latter categories, stored in reasonable conditions, should last virtually forever. In the case of the .22 rimfire, many different lubricants are used, and their life spans are different. I have some Eley BR Gold ammo bought about 20 years ago, stored indoors, and the lube has largely dried up to a white residue. It shoots good, but not precision good, and I clean the barrel after shooting it. I've tried cleaning/re-lubing by wiping with different substance, can't tell much difference. The top line Eley stuff uses a beeswax lube, which might be less durable than others. So, in answer to the OP's question, it's anyone's guess. You could ask the makers, but they probably don't know. They build it to shoot, not store. And there might not even be a lube compound that has been in use long enough to offer meaningful data. It presents a dilemma for those seeking rimfire precision accuracy. When you find the magic lot of ammo for your rifle, you want to buy all you can, but, it might not last. Based on various brands of ammo in my supply, I think one can be reasonably confident about most lubes lasting 4 or 5 years, some much longer.
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Old 02-11-2018, 09:07 PM
MartyH
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Thank you elh0102, you get it.
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Old 02-12-2018, 08:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elh0102 View Post
The issue is lubricant, and being externally lubed, the .22 rimfire is very different than center fire metallic cartridges, and obviously little in common with shotshells. Primer and powder compositions in the latter categories, stored in reasonable conditions, should last virtually forever. In the case of the .22 rimfire, many different lubricants are used, and their life spans are different. I have some Eley BR Gold ammo bought about 20 years ago, stored indoors, and the lube has largely dried up to a white residue. It shoots good, but not precision good, and I clean the barrel after shooting it. I've tried cleaning/re-lubing by wiping with different substance, can't tell much difference. The top line Eley stuff uses a beeswax lube, which might be less durable than others. So, in answer to the OP's question, it's anyone's guess. You could ask the makers, but they probably don't know. They build it to shoot, not store. And there might not even be a lube compound that has been in use long enough to offer meaningful data. It presents a dilemma for those seeking rimfire precision accuracy. When you find the magic lot of ammo for your rifle, you want to buy all you can, but, it might not last. Based on various brands of ammo in my supply, I think one can be reasonably confident about most lubes lasting 4 or 5 years, some much longer.
I shot the last of my Bench Rest Gold a couple of years ago, and although it wasn't shinny like new, I didn't find any difference between it and the lot of 10X I was shooting at the time.
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Old 02-12-2018, 10:16 PM
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This might seem odd, but about 8 years ago we were doing some bulk canning using a borrowed machine that was set up for #10 cans. We were doing some long term storage stuff, so we used oxygen absorbers in each can. No need to discuss the why of all the canning, suffice to say it made the wife feel good so.....

Anyways, we had finished up our canning chores, and were left with two cans. In a fit if both silliness and curiosity, I empty bricks of Winchester (T22?) into each can, along with the end flap from a carton. Popped a few oxygen asborbers in each can and have settled in for the long term test.

Not sure when I will open them, but I am curious about how the ammo holds up.

Having written all that, I would be remiss if I didn't mention that a family friend gave my dad a few boxes of .22LR that had been purchased prior to WWII. This was when I was in junior high, so around 1967. It was without a doubt, the most greasy ammunition I've ever encountered, and even being over 20 years old, the worst that had happened was that the lube was stiffer. It was a real chore to run it through a Winchester 69, as the lube although still greasy, wasn't very soft. But it had not deteriorated in any other way.

If I had been little more thoughtful, I would have stored it someplace warm for a day or so to soften things up, but even so, the actual amount of lube was remarkable. The brass itself was lubed, and amazingly enough, I had zero duds. Go figure.....
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Old 02-12-2018, 10:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyH View Post
I have a lifetime supply of the typical average plinking ammo with wax lube or copper washed. As I begin to use and replace the average stuff with the better target and match ammo, does anyone have personal experience or knowledge as to how well the lube on SK, Norma, RWS and Geco stores?
Store it sealed in a cool dry place and it will last a long time (decades?). The better the seal, the better it will keep. For instance, I have some old Federal 22 LR that I had lying around for 30 years; some in ammo cans, some in bricks and the shelf, and some partially used boxes sitting open. The open boxes are just starting to form the white corrosion on the projectile. The bricks on the shelf look pretty good, still can feel the lube coating, and no corrosion. The stuff in the sealed ammo boxes looks like new. I have a bunch of SK + and GECO stored in ammo boxes, but several unopened cases, but all my 22LR is in a big steel ammo cabinet. The stuff in ammo boxes has a handful of dessicant packs in each. I'm planning on wrapping the unopened cases in industrial plastic wrap with a few dessicant pack, to seal them as tight as possible for long term storage.

I compared some old CCI MiniMags that were in the old orange sleeves against some modern sleeves a couple years ago, and they shot exactly the same. I also shot some Eley that an old guy at the range gave me to try out that was at least 3 or 4 decades old, and it shot great. I have some 25+ year old PMC Zapper ammo that where the bricks were sealed in plastic wrap (still marked $7/brick), and it looks and shoots like when I bought it. Keeping it cool, dry and sealed is the trick, but it will last a pretty long time, even on the shelf if the brick is unopened.
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Old 02-13-2018, 02:05 AM
MartyH
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Thank you for the responses guys but you are for the most part not really helping. This is not a general "how long does 22lr store". I am asking specifically about SK, Geco, RWS and Norma that have the really slippery, oily type lube on them. How long does that style lube stay effective? As I use up my bulk junky wax type lubed 22lr, I am replacing it with ammo my 5 22lr rifles prefer. I'm just debating if I should shoot down my inventory some before I buy these oily Ammos because the reality is that if I'm rotating stock, it could be several years before I start shooting the oily stuff in any quantity. I have identified a couple lots of ammo that's not always available that are working for me.
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Old 02-18-2018, 09:13 AM
flatlander
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I've been doing a lot of testing of various lots of SK, Lapua, Eley - even three lots of Federal UM22 made in Germany by RWS - in Benchmark, Krieger, & Lilja bbls. I pulled a few lot samples of SK Rifle Match out of where I had them stored in my basement to compare to the newer stuff - these older SK boxes were the gold colored with the actual hole in the bullseye. The only real difference between the 10yr old, gold-box & fresh black box Rifle Match I noted while handling this ammo was that the old lube had solidified somewhat, and didn't even begin to come off on my fingers while handling, whereas the fresh SK lube gets all over my fingers every time I load magazines with it. The older ammo still shot well, and I haven't seen any increase in lead fouling while shooting it.

OTOH, I bought several sealed bricks of Eley Match black box from Champions Choice back in the late '90s - early 2000. I had bought it hoping to find it accurate in a CMP Rem 540X, H&R M12, or Win 52D, but was disappointed with it. So, it's been sitting in my basement ever since. The lube now has a frosted appearance, and when I tried running it in a repeater, it flaked off and fouled the action rather quickly. And it causes lead fouling, no surprise since there are bare spots on each bullet after the lube flakes off.
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Old 02-18-2018, 01:04 PM
Bob.
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Lead will oxidize over time without some protection from air, moisture and extreme temperatures changes, lube and wax on most 22 ammo helps prevent it.
If you take a close look of a oxidized bullet under a 20X magnifier there are little crystals on the surface.
Those crystals can be abrasive almost like a lapping compound, I won't use em if the oxidation has progressed to far.
I'm referring mostly to cast bullets but rimfire can degrade the same way.
There are all kinds of methods for LTS, I have a few bricks vacuum sealed and stored in ammo cans.

I like the # 10 can ideal
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  #15  
Old 02-18-2018, 02:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MartyH View Post
Thank you for the responses guys but you are for the most part not really helping. This is not a general "how long does 22lr store". I am asking specifically about SK, Geco, RWS and Norma that have the really slippery, oily type lube on them. How long does that style lube stay effective? As I use up my bulk junky wax type lubed 22lr, I am replacing it with ammo my 5 22lr rifles prefer. I'm just debating if I should shoot down my inventory some before I buy these oily Ammos because the reality is that if I'm rotating stock, it could be several years before I start shooting the oily stuff in any quantity. I have identified a couple lots of ammo that's not always available that are working for me.
7 years 4 months and 8 days then it's toast
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