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Thread: Is powder and primers ever coming back?

  1. #1
    Boolit Master Stopsign32v's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Is powder and primers ever coming back?

    It’s been what, 2 years now? I haven’t seen stocked powder and primers in 2 years. Does anyone know anything? Are brighter days coming?

  2. #2
    Boolit Master

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    The issue now, is the supply chain a economy are about to collapse. If not for that, I would say we would see things freeing up soon. I expected this. I argued with several people here two years ago who said I was crazy when I said 2-3 years minimum. I've been buying up anything I can find, though spotty. In the last 6 months I've been able to get around 4,000 assorted primers, all at $5.50 per sleeve. It takes persistence and patience. Powder Valley has had a ever growing list of available powder. They have maybe 25 or so right now. Hang in there. Good luck.

  3. #3
    Boolit Master Stopsign32v's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hanzy4200 View Post
    The issue now, is the supply chain a economy are about to collapse. If not for that, I would say we would see things freeing up soon. I expected this. I argued with several people here two years ago who said I was crazy when I said 2-3 years minimum. I've been buying up anything I can find, though spotty. In the last 6 months I've been able to get around 4,000 assorted primers, all at $5.50 per sleeve. It takes persistence and patience. Powder Valley has had a ever growing list of available powder. They have maybe 25 or so right now. Hang in there. Good luck.
    Yea I've been seeing Powder Valley's emails, which is promising. My problem is I slept on primers and here I am...It's very frustrating. It's even further frustrating knowing where we could be had Trump been elected again and the Democrats were the same Democrats from the early 2000's. I truly believe Obama changed how the Democratic party believed and acted.

  4. #4
    Boolit Master Baltimoreed's Avatar
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    I’m seeing some powder and bullets in shops. What primers are out there are 3x pre pandemic prices. My personal thoughts are that companies only make money if they are selling their products. With the pandemic closings, give away gov’ment subsidies and people leaving their jobs? companies are having a hard time producing anything and then greedy reloaders who clean off the shelves as soon as they have anything on them rather than only buying what the need. All of the above are creating the lack of components. But reloading components will return. They will cost more but then everything will.

  5. #5
    Boolit Master



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    Greedy reloader is a misnomer. If one follows your logic; producers would dramatically expand production to keep those shelves full (despite Greedy Reloader); because that is how they make a profit. Following same logic; others will see empty shelves and say "I can make and sell that"; and they start filling the shelves, with greedy reloaders eventually being overwhelmed with product.

    The above is a simplistic description of what has been termed "The Free Market". Why is it not working? The answer is because we do not have a FREE MARKET! We have allowed the Federal and State governments to incrementally invade our lives, privacy, and businesses over the last 100 years to where everything is regulated and controlled. Couple this with "Business/Government" partnerships (Seems to only happen with Mega Corporations), and we see tremendous impediments to entry into a market.

    Any start up would have difficulty entering the market to compete in a "Free Market"; but nothing like what they encounter in today's Federal/State stranglehold on what used to be the "Free Market".
    Mustang

    "In the beginning... the patriot is a scarce man, and brave and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot." - Mark Twain.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master Hannibal's Avatar
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    There is already a trend in that the cost will continue to rise and sooner or later shooting and reloading will become hobbies of those with well-lined pockets.

  7. #7
    Boolit Master

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    Maintain an "emergency stash" below which you could not tolerate to be without. Rotate new stock into and old stock out of that stash. Purchase wisely (easy to say, more difficult to do). Today's high price is offset - through averaging - with stock already in hand, which was purchased at a lower price. If today you purchase the same quantity as already on hand, your "realized cost" is exactly in the middle of the two. Prices will "eventually" fall, but it is doubtful they will fall far enough to regain the "prices in heaven" we will talk about as the "Good Old Days".
    If it was easy, anybody could do it.

  8. #8
    Boolit Buddy
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    Lots of opinions on all of this, here is mine FWIW.

    There are plenty of primers available. Go to GB and similar sites and if you have the cash, buy to your hearts desire.

    Without doubt people contributed to this mess.by their willingness to pay whatever for products. This just encourages the high prices.

    Powder in my area is plentiful. Sometimes I have to wait for R 10 to come in. I can't count how many times I have read a person's post about buying such a such powder and then asking what it's good for. Lots of powder bought up that will likely never be used.

    Then there are the cries that manufacturers are price gouging. This may be true, I don't know. What I do know is that their input costs, like everyone’s has gone up significantly. Throw in Remingtons bankruptcy.

    I was in several places lately and saw 22 ammo everywhere and prices have come down, supple way up. Remember when we couldn't find any 22 ammo?

  9. #9
    Boolit Buddy

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    I wonder at what point in the evolution of American Society did the generation "in their vigor" say in the 1940-60's say ""this is the new normal" or the generation in the years " of their vigor" 1980-2000's say "this is the new normal" etc etc etc. Re-Read Mustangs comment above: This is the ("our") new normal moment and it is here to stay. The "Why?" means little now, cause its the way it is. World economics Global politics effecting resources at all levels have moved on, whatever. We need to just suck it up and get busy how ever, where ever we can find the components we desire. We can still have it all, just now it's based on our tolerance for recreational expenditures.
    “You should tell someone what you know. There should be a history, so that men can learn from it.

    He smiled. “Men do not learn from history. Each generation believes itself brighter than the last, each believes it can survive the mistakes of the older ones. Each discovers each old thing and they throw up their hands and say ‘See! Look what I have found! Look upon what I know!’ And each believes it is something new.

    Louis L’Amour

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  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy ACC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hannibal View Post
    There is already a trend in that the cost will continue to rise and sooner or later shooting and reloading will become hobbies of those with well-lined pockets.
    That is exactly how I see it.

    ACC

  11. #11
    Boolit Master
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    Mfg prices on powder and primers is up ~30% over pre-covid. Due to the high demand there are a lot of people buying at mfg prices and reselling at double that. But, it is available.

    CCI and Federal primers have both been showing up in the local Sportsman's. And in more quantity than pre-covid. They disappear faster because of those stocking up (like me ). I have bought 2400 CCI SR match primers in the last 2 months. Price is about $8.50/100 vs $5.50/100 pre-covid. Std primers were $6/100 .

    Hodgdon also seems to be catching back up. If you aren't picky there is powder available. I am patient and wait for the powder that I want. It is working as my stockpile is increasing.

    Hornady bullets are almost back to pre-covid levels as well, and not much higher in price (if any).

    I have heard of at least one company start up for manufacturing primers here in the US. As long as the high demand lasts that might cause one or two others to try to overcome paperwork to start such an operation.

    For those of you who are dependent on internet purchasing you are probably going to be suffering from the pricing issues longer. At least until the demand drops enough that the 'scalpers' can't make a good profit.

  12. #12
    Boolit Master Shawlerbrook's Avatar
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    It does seem that stock is getting slightly better but the prices are still crazy. May be the new normal.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by MUSTANG View Post
    Greedy reloader is a misnomer. If one follows your logic; producers would dramatically expand production to keep those shelves full (despite Greedy Reloader); because that is how they make a profit. Following same logic; others will see empty shelves and say "I can make and sell that"; and they start filling the shelves, with greedy reloaders eventually being overwhelmed with product.

    The above is a simplistic description of what has been termed "The Free Market". Why is it not working? The answer is because we do not have a FREE MARKET! We have allowed the Federal and State governments to incrementally invade our lives, privacy, and businesses over the last 100 years to where everything is regulated and controlled. Couple this with "Business/Government" partnerships (Seems to only happen with Mega Corporations), and we see tremendous impediments to entry into a market.

    Any start up would have difficulty entering the market to compete in a "Free Market"; but nothing like what they encounter in today's Federal/State stranglehold on what used to be the "Free Market".
    This is very true. A 300% profit increase in primers would be a signal to produce more and for others to get in on it. I check Ammoseek all the time and domestic primers are almost non-existent. There's a lot more than simple supply and demand going on here. We know our rulers don't like us having guns and ammo so maybe they found a way to keep most of use from having the means for self-protection.

  14. #14
    Boolit Grand Master


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    I can only tell you a general trend that I'm aware of in manufacturing at the moment is that it is going to get worse this fall. Realize I am not in the ammo, or even firearms manufacturing, but the problems we face are shared by all manufacturers at the moment. We can't even get raw goods right now. I work in a printing factory, and the forecast is that we will not be able to get the rolls of paper needed for the jobs we could be getting. Employee wise, we can't hire any more good workers. I'm not aware of any industry at the moment that is any different. The positions are there, but there are no more skilled workers to be had. It's a good time to move up in a company though, they will train you.

    I would not expect anything to change in the next few months. There's no way to increase production right now. Nobody can get the materials or skilled workers. I'm guessing they won't let someone make primers for production until they are certain they know what they are doing, and it's not a job easily automated from what I've seen. Just keep your fingers crossed elections go good this fall, things smooth out with the supply chain, and ammo demand slows this fall. Then maybe next spring things will be better. We also possibly have a new primer factory in Texas opening, but we all know the backstory there.

  15. #15
    Boolit Master

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    its simple economics with supply and demand. the manufactures use primers themselves to make ammo that is in demand, they only sell the extra and then to the highest bidder. as long as demand remains strong in the ammo end of things the supply of primers will remain low. i doubt we will ever see the 15 buck bricks of primers like a few years ago. it could get much worse so if you find primers at a cost you can stomach, better stock up.
    if you are ever being chased by a taxidermist, don't play dead

  16. #16
    Boolit Master


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    I have seen more primers available but at scalper prices!
    $9-10/100!

  17. #17
    Boolit Grand Master


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    Quote Originally Posted by deltaenterprizes View Post
    I have seen more primers available but at scalper prices!
    $9-10/100!
    There never was a shortage of primers at those prices. At any point you could always buy primers for $100-$150 a thousand, but that's not a reasonable price to anyone except those who can't buy factory ammo. Everything is up about 30% right now from a few years ago, so I would expect at some point in the future primers will get below $50 a thousand again.

  18. #18
    Boolit Master
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    Quote Originally Posted by megasupermagnum View Post
    There never was a shortage of primers at those prices. At any point you could always buy primers for $100-$150 a thousand, but that's not a reasonable price to anyone except those who can't buy factory ammo. Everything is up about 30% right now from a few years ago, so I would expect at some point in the future primers will get below $50 a thousand again.
    Not sure about the $50 line. Current CCI prices seem to be just over that.

  19. #19
    Boolit Grand Master GhostHawk's Avatar
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    I don't consider 100$ per thousand scalping prices. 150 to 200$ per K probably is.

    I have enough of everything I need to last me quite a while. But, as noted, everything is going to cost 2 to 4 times as much to replace.

    So I have pretty much quit shooting powder burners. Air rifles at under 2 cents a shot, yeah I'll burn those to keep my eye sharp if needed.

    .22mag price per round is almost back to where it was. I bought before the crunch at 24 cents per round. It is now available at 28 to 30 cents per round for the same brands and bullet weights. Considering that to reload to shoot would cost half of that just for primers. .22mag does not seem so bad a deal to me. And I can shoot with no time invested to replace. Just cash and patience to go find the good bargains.
    I truly believe we need to get back to basics.

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  20. #20
    Boolit Grand Master
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    Ghosthawk, too many people are unwilling to adapt like we have.

    Folks do not need to use expensive primers and powders to get lots of trigger time and to stay proficient.

    Friday, I shot 250 pellets for less than $4. I was shooting in a 13 mph wind and it was challenging and fun. If I had broken out the 1894 carbine, it would have cost $25 just for primers. Plus the work to cast, clean cases, and reload them. News flash....the paper could not tell the difference. And the darn air rifle is more accurate!!

    I was one of those guys who shot over 300 rounds a week for years. Just not affordable now. I love to shoot and have adapted to enjoy my hobby. I see guys here talking about leaving the hobby. It is the only option left for folks who do not want to adapt and do not have deep pockets.

    Guys like us will keep shooting until we are too crippled up or the Father brings us home. Keep on keeping on my friend!
    Don Verna


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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check