Ammo Sticker Shock

I had planned a range day late last week, so I decided to make a trip to my favorite gun store in the world, Adventure Outdoors in Smyrna, Georgia. They recently moved about a quarter mile down the road and across the street, into a renovated old grocery store, and it’s very impressive.

To give you an idea of how reasonable their prices are, comparatively, when I lived in Alabama, 4 hours away, I would wait until we visited family in the Atlanta area to buy ammo.

I went in looking for a couple of venerable Russian loads, 7.62×39 for my SKS, and 7.62x54R for my Mosin Nagant. Boy, was I surprised.

While the 7.62×39, which is the standard round for half the world’s fighting arms, used to be had for $2.99 per box of 20, it was now $6.99. My brain didn’t wrap itself around that until I translated it into a standard “per 50 round” price, more like $20.48. Yikes.

The 7.62x54R was even worse, at around $20 for a box of 20. I’ll save you hunting for your sliderule – that’s $50 for a box of 50.

Worse still, they were completely out of bricks of normal, lead .22LR ammo. Yes, they had stingers, and they had 50 round boxes, but I like to spend $20 for a brick of 500. None.

I know there’s the beginnings of a run on ammo, in anticipation of post election shenanigans, no doubt. It has to be all on the demand side, though, as there isn’t any import restrictions that I’m aware of.

Of course, looking at 9mm prices, now around $14 a box, I am tempted to finally break down and learn to reload. the problem, though, is that I’m not sure it would pay off for the Russian rounds, given that the cost of reloadable brass cases probably approaches the cost of imported loaded ammo.

So I’m faced with a dilemma – do I give in and buy ammo and stock up along with others, in the fear that re-election of Obama will bring even higher prices and lower stock? Or do I forego competing and fun shooting this summer, and wait for the market to come to its senses, as it did in 2008 and 2009?

Decisions, decisions . . . . .

2 thoughts on “Ammo Sticker Shock

  1. It's déjà vu all over again. I shoot mostly 9mm so have yet to convince myself to invest in reloading equipment. Still finding my fav 9mm 124gr for $11/box, by the case. I'm looking to pinch pennies in other areas, rather than sacrifice trigger time; those are skills we need to keep fresh. Frankly, I suspect the shenanigans are going to start pre-election.


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