Monday, April 20, 2009

Prepare: Guns SHTF Which Gun

The headlines scream about the numbers of AR this an AK that which are "flying" off the shelves at the gun stores nationwide. It's true, there have been a lot of semi's being sold in the past 9 months.

Next, the gun stores are reporting high sales in every other type of rifle and handgun as well. One could estimate that millions of weapons have been sold in the past year alone. All of those firearms are going home to first time buyers as well as several into the hands of savvy investors too.

Then comes the kicker: Ammo. There is none to be had say the arms merchants. Stories abound of Walmart stocks being bought out on the loading docks by greedy gun store owners. Of whole cases being auctioned off in secret sales before a single round makes it to the shelves.

True or not, ammo is indeed hard to get and only small amounts have been available when at all.

Since last year, I have been keeping tabs on the best locations, due to sheer number of stores and volume, in my area - Walmart. Walmart typically carries in the glass case any number of caliber desired and generally, the prices are good on most major manufacturers.

Starting last fall, the shelves started getting some holes in the stock. First went 5.56 (they kind fired by semi rifles like the AR15) and 7.62 x 39, the kind used by AK rifles.

Then the handgun calibers ran low. .380 and 9MM went first followed by .38, .357 and later .45. All this occured slowly, over a 6-8 month period by my calculations.

Over this past weekend, I stopped off at two Walmarts in my area. Let me temper this by saying, I live in one of the top gun-friendly states in the Union so firearm support i.e. retail availability has never been a problem.

At both Walmart locations, here was the scene. The glass ammunition case was stocked on each shelf, except for the top shelf and one of the middle shelves, with 12 gauge shells. Bird shot, slugs and buckshot.

There were three boxes each of 30-30, 30-06 and 270. There were about five boxes of 7MM. The top shelf had about ten boxes of 22 magnums. That was it. Everything else was 12 gauge.

Need a box of 9's? 38's? Forget it. Judging by the stocking, this was the case at most Walmarts and will probably remain this way for several months.

So what's the verdict? In all seriousness, if you have not purchased a firearm for preparedness, my advice is to pick up a pump action 12 gauge shotgun in short order. Not only is the shotty a versatile and handy firearm, there is plenty of ammo to feed it obviously.

Now, you can still purchase several types of handguns and other long guns, but there simply is not enough ammo to feed it beyond range time. Which means either your practice takes the hit or your stocks for post-SHTF. Not a fun place to be.

So consider getting a shotgun and take advantage of the plethora of ammo for that particular beast while it is available.

An interesting side note: There are more AR and AK available from the big online retailers once again. Before, places like Impact and Classic were reduced to only having Mosin Nagants, an odd Mauser and some knock off accessories. Not the case now. In fact, Classic has CETME's in stock again! Wow.

However, most of the ammo and nearly all the surplus ammo is gone and I hate to say it, it won't be back any time soon. Forget about South African and Lake City leftovers. It is not coming back.

So stock up on what you can get now and keep your eyes open for extras when it comes available. Ammo is definitely coming to be, as Col. Jeff Cooper calls it, ballistic wampum for the new world.


merch said...

i've been seeing the same thing with empty shelves. i live near a cabela's and was there yesterday helping my mother-in-law choose a pistol(that was fun) but while waiting for her backround check i wondered into the accessory isle and noticed every space for hi-cap mags for AK or AR-15 variants were empty so were the ammo shelves for them, but they and rows of shotgun shells and nothing clears a room faster than the pump 12. did note too that there is still plenty of .38 and .45, not sure if people don't realize the effectiveness of said rounds or are overlooking them. i don't know but most people that i have seen buying the AK/AR guns are first time buyers and if you don't know how to use the weapon effectively it doesn't matter how many rounds you can put down range. and for the price of one bushmaster i can get a decent 12ga, rifle and pistol so i don't see the point. i've used the M4 in combat and i love it, it's a fantastic weapon but not for people who haven't trained on it. just my thoughts

John said...

I have checked a few other outlets such as Academy Sports in my area. They have a few more types of ammo naturally, but the .223 and 7.62 (all variants) are now behind the counter. Little piles of each to boot. If you can't get water, that squirt gun aint gonna work!
You are right about the complexity of the AR system. I think many of these rifles will end up unfired or used once at best.
Reading more carefully, I think the market is being kept high by the investors and speculators wishing/praying for a ban. Impact had "bundles" of Colts I think in 10 packs specifically for those customers for sale. Crazy, but I think the market is glutted with AR and AK rifles right now and if we remain ban free, we might see a buyers market come as early as this fall.

Thanks for reading and your comments,

Staying Alive said...

I get pretty much the same story on ammo as you. I just took care of my 12 gauge nutition first! HAH! I have never heard of bundles of 10 paks of COLTS. A new critter to me!


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