Save $$ and Survive

  • Last Post 11 March 2019
jchiggins posted this 26 February 2019

Don't want to talk politics, but I do have a question regarding the ever tightening noose around our firearms interest.

Lately I have been pondering the ever rising costs of reloading components and in some cases the slow erosion of availability.  In some cases, retailers have had restrictions or conditions placed on them that makes doing business in our hobby less profitable or more difficult due to administration overhead. I'm speaking generally in regard to the entire Country. 

In thinking about the situation and it's impact on my shooting budget, I'm trying to come up with ideas to save money (use less powder, less lead, extend life of brass, etc.).  Considering the difference in quantities of powder needed for some calibers, should I consider trading off "component hogs" and focusing on small bore and pistols?  Example: 30-06 for 357 magnum rifle??  Single shot vs M1??

I would like to be able to pursue this interest for many more years; it seems a strategy may be needed to survive and still have fun.

Any thoughts, ideas?  Just wondering what some of you are doing in this regard.  BTW, I'm in Oregon. 

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erj145 posted this 26 February 2019

As a resident of a Marxist state in the northeast, I have become fairly successful in accumulating reloading components online. Your instincts are correct.:simplify and accumulate! For now there are vendors on the net that will provide currently available components.  The ones I utilize will accept orders if you can provide some form of documentation (ex: a license to carry) that the purchase is legal in your state. I don't know if Oregon has blocked off that avenue of supply.

Meanwhile you might consider exactly what you need for your activity present and future, and provide for that need. Purchase what you can where you can and keep it simple in terms of logistics. I agree with you that the day is coming when shutting down the source of supply will be more effective than political efforts to gut the 2nd Amendment.



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RicinYakima posted this 26 February 2019

jc in Oregon, I live in WA and you know what the situation is here, I hope. I am done hunting so am only keeping hunting rifles that I like, a 275 Rigby, 30/06 and 35 Whelen. Keeping a 20 and a 12 shotgun, but never reloaded or used them much the last 20 years. One varmint gun, a few 1903's to play with and two black guns. .32 pistols and revolvers and a couple of .45's. When I go to the range I try to get in 20 - 40 good shots at the rifle range and not more than 50 at the pistol range. I shoot about 40 times a year. I figure to have about 10 or 12 more years of shooting.

So, I calculated out how much powder, lead and primers I need. I have been hoarding and buying at yard sales and closeouts for over 40 years, so it was not a big expense at any one time.   I have enough of everything but small pistol primers. I am already giving reloading equipment away to youngsters that want to take up the hobby.

HTH's Ric

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Scearcy posted this 26 February 2019

I have plenty of ammo and / or components for any big game. My bird hunting buddies have all died off as have my dogs so I don't need very many shotgun shells. That leaves prairie dogs and CBA.

The thing I would worry most about is primers. I have 13# of 4759 and am going to buy an 8# of 4198 this spring. If I can get an ample supply of large primers, I am good for quite a while. 

So far there are plenty of components available for my 223s. I should buy an 8# of Benchmark and 3,000 primers just to be sure.

I do shoot way more 22 LR than I did in the past.

Cost won't really be the issue as very few of us shoot THAT much but I can see regulations drying up the supply of primers pretty easily.


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RicinYakima posted this 26 February 2019

Jim, for us in WA we have a different issue. The City of Seattle passed a $.25 tax on every round of loaded ammunition. Our Supreme Court says it is only a tax issue and therefore OK. Now other cities and counties are considering doing the same on reloading components. This includes internet and thru the mail sales. 

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Scearcy posted this 26 February 2019


Is this a tax at point of sale or are they taxing everything in your possession. Either is insane.


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RicinYakima posted this 27 February 2019

Jim, Point of sale. As of March first the last FFL is closing his store in Seatle. There are no businesses that I can find in the city of Seattle that will then be selling ammo. However, it has been a blessing for the little gun shops in King County, as all are reporting booming business. At least until the new State gun laws go into effect July first. It is a crazy world up here. Ric

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R. Dupraz posted this 27 February 2019

Well if there was a SD politician who voted for that kind of legislation, let alone introduce it, he or she, whichever the case may be, would likely get strung up at the nearest  cottonwood.

Guns and ammo can still be found at hdw, farm stores, gun and pawn shops as well as at Walmarts. And our new Governor just signed a no permit concealed carry bill into law.

So keep all those "progressive" air heads out where you-all are. We are perfectly happy just the way we are all by our own selves. 



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  • RicinYakima
RicinYakima posted this 27 February 2019

I'd live in Yankton if it didn't rain so much and the winters weren't so cold!

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max503 posted this 01 March 2019

Buy a bunch of Unique.


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Brodie posted this 01 March 2019

If you are into saving money, NOE has a sale on the next 3 days for all gas checks , seaters, expanders, in stock. 

Just thought I would pass it along.


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jchiggins posted this 04 March 2019

I appreciate the feedback, everyone; gave me some ideas. 

Did an inventory of components and then worked out estimated usage for the next five years. Although I plan on being in this pastime for more years than that, it gave me a target to calculate against.  One bit of fallout from this exercise was realizing what powders I really use and which ones were acquired and weren't beneficial.  Now I know what to focus on and what will give me the best cost/benefit.  Discovered 2000 large magnum pistol primers for which I have no use and never did; will be useful for future sell/ trade.  The plan is to cover components for pistols first, since they use the least amount, then ensure rifle needs are covered.  Also going to consider selling a couple of rarely used rifles to acquire something more economical to shoot, such as a rifle in 357 mag/maximum; which I would like to have regardless.  


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max503 posted this 06 March 2019

A 357 rifle has to be one of the best investments a caster can make.  I've got an H&R with a cheapo shotgun scope on it.  I've shot it so much one of the inner springs wore out and broke and it ain't that old.

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onondaga posted this 09 March 2019


Prudent shopping has helped me. My best deal on gas checks, aluminum or brass is from member Sages Outdoors:


I only use certified alloys for bullets and orders over $100 from Rotometals ship free:



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mashburn posted this 10 March 2019

Is your jchiggins handle  in anyway related to the 40's & 50's firearms sold by Sears? We would welcome you to move to Oklahoma, just as long as you vote like we do. Good luck to you. We just passed constitutional carry.


David a. Cogburn

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jchiggins posted this 11 March 2019

Yes, I acquired a JC Higgins Model 50 in 30-06 about 10 years ago.  It's quite accurate with jacketed, has been my mule deer rifle until this past season when I switched over to a 7x57 rifle I built. Using the Model 50 for the coyote hunt, hopefully my new loads will be up to the task; the first ones weren't .

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