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View Full Version : More shortages on the way ?



blacksmithden
05-31-2012, 09:08 PM
Hi guys....I just got this email from Brownell's.


Dear Folks,

Looking back a few months to November 2011, we predicted certain products might become hard to get in 2012. Well, unfortunately the industry currently is having trouble getting ammunition in calibers .223/556mm and .40 S&W, plus many AR-15 parts and some other accessories. So our predictions have happened. No great talent on our part, actually. All we had to do was watch the shelves empty way faster than factories could supply. In fact, now those factory folks are experiencing increased demand, causing delivery dates to be pushed quite a way out there for the most popular, most wanted products. We're still in as great a shape as possible - better than most other sellers because of our supply-chain connections and management. But deliveries to you, our customers, are just not where we want them on all the things we carry and show in the catalog and on the web. Pete and I hate it as much as you do. After all, our entire mission is to get you what you want as fast as possible.

Although at an initial look, it seems again like a repeat 2008’s politically-driven reactive surge brought on by the Obama election, we don't feel that’s the whole story. We think the demand for these calibers and these parts and accessories is quite a bit different – and a lot more sustainable – than that post-election “political bump” we saw in 2008.

Why? Well, basically the marketplace has changed in important ways since 2008-2009. Back then, many new people were introduced to or came back into the firearms market. They were buying AR-15s for fear they may be banned, and handguns of various types for the same reason. Next, the conceal carry movement really caught fire across the United States, and many more new people entered the market for that, too. Now, two to three years later, all those new shooters are pretty much "in the firearms sport", and are enjoying themselves and creating a whole new level of demand for accessories and gadgets to trick-out their favorite firearms from the 2008-2009 purchases.

The conceal carry market rages ahead, getting ever stronger as more and more products are developed specifically for it. Many more people have become concerned about protecting their families and their way of life, and are buying conceal carry firearms. This increase in gun ownership requires greater quantities of ammunition as these new shooters go to the range to practice - and then realize shooting is fun! Therefore, there are more gun owners, who need more ammo. They're not buying it because they fear it might be banned – they're buying it because they have guns they want to shoot, hunts they want to take, and ammo reserves they want to build up. So, this demand for products is not all from "fear" or "reactionary" purchases based on future political possibilities. Folks started out thinking "I need to protect my family and I need a gun to do so", and then make further purchases because "I've got a gun I want to shoot".

In addition, because of recent world conflicts, we find our military’s reserve levels of ammunition appear to be at an all-time low. So the military is restocking, which puts huge additional demands on the civilian ammo supply chain.

Now, with all of these conditions stacked on top of each other - plus a little bit of a political bump for fear of some ban which may or may not happen – we have a "perfect storm" of significantly more demand than the supply chains in the ammunition market and AR market are currently able to keep up with. In fact, it was a perfect storm in 2008, too, but with different events driving it. The effect is the same, tho . . . we can't always have on hand some of those limited-supply products you want!

There is a mighty strong light at the end of the tunnel. Factories are delivering at a much more frequent pace now. We have done, and will continue to do, a much better job of informing you folks about where your orders are, if there is a backorder, when you can expect delivery, and if we have good alternatives when there’s an out-of-stock situation on a product you want. Here at Brownells we will take your backorder, or you can choose to be notified when it comes in. And of course, we won't bill you for the merchandise until we ship it.

Further, we've been around long enough to have super-strong relationships with all of our suppliers, and we work very hard with them to get "head of line" or "big share of shipment" status when they make shipments. Yeah, it can be a crap shoot, but with us at least you're gonna be at the head of any line that is forming for these few hard to get items!!

So, find what you like, get it on order – or backorder if we happen to be out at the moment - and we'll ship it to you just as soon as possible. Reality is, as I write this today, we're actually out of only 3,167 items, only 4.3% of the 72,000+ products we have in stock in the warehouses. And the trend of outages of even those few is dramatically dropping – more stuff coming in every day. So, your chances of hitting a home run with us are mighty, mighty good, even on some of the tough-to-get items.


I sure don't want to start any rumours or stampedes, but history does repeat itself from time to time. The lead up to the last US election saw primers and in some cases, powder availability drop WAY off and prices go WAY up. If The Big Zero gets elected again, it'll be his last term no matter what, and he knows it. There is talk of a huge anti-gun push from the white house because Zero won't have anything to lose. This will inevitably cause a surge in pre-election buying on the Americans part. Everybody might want to grab a few thousand extra primers now, and a few pounds of your favourite powder before things get stupid again. I can tell you this much for sure. WSS in Edmonton hasn't had a delivery from IMR powders in lord knows how long, and hasn't had a lot of stuff in stock for at least 4 months (yea...much more so than their usual crappy stocking levels)

Redhouse
05-31-2012, 10:49 PM
I've been warned at 3 different retailers about current and soon-to-be-worse shortages of certain stuff, powder being an 'already' item.

blacksmithden
05-31-2012, 11:05 PM
Well there you go. I picked up another 1k Federal 215 primers today (like I need them...LOL). Better to build a buffer supply than to be without when the crunch comes. Time to find some powder too I guess.

blacksmithden
06-02-2012, 07:57 AM
I finally found some IMR3031 for my 30-30 yesterday. I was told that nobody is getting any significant shipments of powder out of the US right now, and haven't for the past few months. I guess as long as Obama is a threat to US gun owners, they're going to stockpile. It's times like this that I'm glad I'm a bit of a hoarder. LOL !

BrotherRockeye
06-02-2012, 08:07 AM
yep...time to stockpile some favorites.

FlyingHigh
06-02-2012, 11:32 AM
crap. i don't reload yet, but i don't wanna get caught with my pants down either. I plan to reload mostly for my 7mm to start. Any suggestions on powder I should grab? Or is powder something that is very load specific for my particular gun where i'd have to try a bunch to see what works best?

Redhouse
06-02-2012, 04:10 PM
If you're talking about 7mm Rem Mag, Reloader22 and Reloader 25 are classic powders, H4831 will work for most loads too. Depends on bullet weight, ie., 130, 139, 150, 160, 175, etc., to a certain extent. My personal fave was RL22 with 160/162gr bullets.

JustBen
06-02-2012, 07:24 PM
Ah, crap. I should probably stock up before hunting season...

Drache
06-02-2012, 07:32 PM
This isn't a rumor. On multiple forums I'm on, US members are screaming out for ammo. When they heard how much my local gunstore has in stock in these calibers they wanted me to buy them and ship them down to them for a hefty profit on my part.

blacksmithden
06-02-2012, 08:50 PM
This isn't a rumor. On multiple forums I'm on, US members are screaming out for ammo. When they heard how much my local gunstore has in stock in these calibers they wanted me to buy them and ship them down to them for a hefty profit on my part.

If that's not an advertisement to reload, I don't know what is. I've got an assortment of bullets, powder, and brass on hand for all of the calibers I shoot. Primers...bahaha...no longer a problem ! :) LOL. Some obviously see a lot more use than others. I'm now in the process of casting up a giant pile of bullets for various toys. I have no intention of being caught with my pants down like a lot of people did when they were asking 60+ dollars for a box of primers IF they could get them at all.

I think I'm going to do a little brass shopping next week. I don't really need it, but it's the only thing I don't have a bunch of new stuff sitting on the shelf. My goal...be able to ride out a 5 year drought without going to the store once. Still a little way to go, but not too far.

FlyingHigh
06-02-2012, 11:18 PM
If you're talking about 7mm Rem Mag, Reloader22 and Reloader 25 are classic powders, H4831 will work for most loads too. Depends on bullet weight, ie., 130, 139, 150, 160, 175, etc., to a certain extent. My personal fave was RL22 with 160/162gr bullets.

yeah, it is 7mm Rem Mag. 160 grain bullets, probably Hornady. i'll swing into the shops tomorrow and see what they have for those powders.