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 Post subject: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 11:33 pm 
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Location: Busch Wildlife Area St Charles Mo
I have some old boxes of shells can they be to old to safely shoot.
Thanks Mark

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 12:00 am 
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If they have been kept dry and are not corroded, they should be good to go.

Jeff

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:12 am 
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only when you shoot them:)
the above post is correct!

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 5:34 am 
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shotgunnut is right on the money...

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 8:30 am 
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No, you should not shoot them. Please send them to me for proper disposal. :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 9:32 am 
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I've never been able to keep any around long enough to find out. Dry and corrosion free should be OK.

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:38 pm 
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They won't expire until you pull the trigger on them! Send them to me and I'll put them out of their misery.

Dan


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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 1:57 pm 
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Some shells that are on the shelf too long should have a deep discount when sold. Many of the non lead shells should expire after hunting season and the stores should discount them so there is fresh stock on the shelves for sale.


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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 9:58 pm 
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Location: Busch Wildlife Area St Charles Mo
I have seen that some people collect them.
I should make sure they are not worth more than new ones.

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late 60's Win 410 370 Youth
1956 12ga Win Mod 50 IC
1961 12ga Win Mod 50 Cyl
1959 20ga Win Mod 50 IC, FULL, POLY
1961 12ga Win Mod 12 Cutts
2011 .410 BPS (poor mans M42)


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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 10:07 pm 
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are you talking three years old, ten years old or thirty years old?

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2011 11:27 pm 
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If the shells are black powder, say from the 1880-1920 period, i'd advise that you not use them. However, if they have stored properly and not corroded, they should be just fine. I regularly shoot 50 year old shells.

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2011 3:23 pm 
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While I don't regularly shoot 50 year old shells, I'm still going through some 16G paper shells that I inherited from my father-in-law that are older than I am.

I was born in 1973.

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2011 9:15 pm 
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Shotgun shells, like most other things become valuable to a collector when they are unique and/or rare. It doesn't necessarily have to be paper, brass or old but neither do those qualities make a shell valuable. Many folks offer old paper shells on sale at auction sites for ridiculous sums and yet they may buy a box of shells today and throw the empty box away while in 10 yrs it could be worth more than they paid for the whole box!

Wanda shells sell today for $3-$5 each (reasonable price) and yet, not long ago, I encountered a fellow burning several boxes up at clay birds! I traded him a box of new shells for 1 of them and both of us came away happy (I was probably happier because I never told him the truth about the value.)

As for shooting old shells, if it fits properly in the gun and fires when you pull the trigger, you are probably OK but I see many, many old shells that likely will not easily fit a chamber or if they do, will probably stick after fireing. Carry a cleaning rod!


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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Fri Apr 29, 2011 10:22 pm 
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If they have been exposed to high temperatures like being stored in an attic for a long time I would'nt shoot them They could be dangerous. When I was a teenager my uncle gave me four boxes of 20ga. shells that had been in his attic for about 20yrs. They still looked new but some wouldn't shoot at all, some shot so weak the shot didn't go but about 15ft out the muzzel Then I got one that shot so strong it knocked me flat on my a** . The rest of them went in the river.


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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2011 3:07 am 
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Somewhere in my pile of old gun magazines I have an early 1960's American Rifleman that has an ad for the then new Remington plastic shells. One of Remington's selling points for the new plastic shells was their claim that paper shells lost significant velocity after just a few years storage,,,and the new plastic shells wouldn't. And I've seen a fellow pheasant hunter in South Dakota have lots of squibby sounding 40 year old plastic pheasant loads.

I've shot 50 year old paper shells with no trouble, and regularly shoot 30 year old 16 gauge plastic shells from a big stash I bought back then. How the shells are stored makes a difference, I think.


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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2011 4:52 pm 
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I've seen old paper shells that were exposed to a moist environment swell up so much they wouldn't fit in the chamber. Other than that, I've never seen any problems with old ammo as long as it stayed dry.


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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2011 3:21 pm 
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"How the shells are stored makes a difference, I think."

Agreed. I've only been back at shotgunning for about 16 years. I took a break during my college/early career days. But I still had some stuff from back in my teens, and I stored it and anything I've bought, been given, etc. dry and at living-quarters temp. Never had a problem to speak of.

At the club, I do carry a shell-knocker. Mainly, I lend it to reloaders. :)

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 Post subject: Re: do shotgun shells expire
PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2011 4:30 pm 
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If they are kept right,they will almost positively go off!


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