As a certified “gun nut” I have a bushel basket full of them. And to keep my firearms from being nothing more than expensive brickbats, one needs projectiles. And that’s what this is about…projectiles, or the purchasing of them online. Gone are the days of going to the local sporting goods shop and paying through the nose.
Of course a great place for ammo is still Wal-Mart. I have been stocking up on ammo of all calibers for some time now and no matter how much I search I cannot find .22 long rifle ammo on line cheaper than I can get it at Wally World.
But now there are awesome options, cause Wal-Mart is not the cheapest place in town for all ammo all the time, as well, it is hard to get Wal-Mart to order large quantities of ammo in bulk. If ya want to stock up a box or two at a time Wal-Mart will do fine, so go for it. I prefer to buy mine by the thousands…it’s cheaper and far more efficient in the long run, even with the shipping costs of buying ammo online.
For the novice online ammo buyer, there are a few “bewares.” Is the outfit reputable? Most ammo sales are known as “FINAL,” meaning once the ammo is shipped you own it. They cannot resell ammo that has been “in the hands of the public” as the phrase seems to pop up at most online ammo sites. Buy from an outfit that has been reviewed…such reviews can be found all over the Internet, so buyer beware. A tiny bit of due diligence may save you a headache and some cash. I suggest gun blogs as the best place…the online retailer’s website “testimonials” could be fake ya know.
The other two real “buyer’s beware” are price of the ammo and shipping costs. Price is relatively self-explanatory. For the uninitiated, the price of identical ammo from site to sight can be drastic. Sometimes as much as 50% or more difference in price for the exact same ammo from site to site, so do your research!
But the real ripoff can be found in the shipping costs, and this is the point of my tale. I just ordered a massive amount of ammo – 9300 odd rounds from and the shipping price on it was $180 USD. Sounds like a princely sum, no? And it is, but consider that unless you have a local retailer who stocks or will order ammo for you in case sizes, you are paying far more for it in 20 and 50 round boxes. A 20 round box of almost any rifle ammo will be far more expensive on a per round basis by the 20 rounds at a time then to make a case sized purchase. Same for pistol ammo that is usually sold in 50 round boxes.
And the $180 I paid in UPS shipping was still way CHEAPER than another online ammo retailer tried to charge me. The other online ammo store wanted $360.00 in shipping for the exact same order – exactly the same quantities of the same ammo, and it too was coming from the Midwest area, so the shipping costs should have been similar. Clearly the other ammo supplier is charging a premium to be put back into their own pocket. Bear in mind though some online ammo retailers charge almost nothing for shipping, but they often mark up the ammo very high.
For example, part of my ammo shipment was 300 9mm rounds – Federal 115 gr. Full Metal Jacket. It’s easy to go to Wal-Mart and pay $18.00 for 50, so do the math. I paid $75.00 for 300 rounds and the exact same ammo at Wal-Mart (6 50 round boxes at $18.00 each) is $108.00 + $10.00 and change in tax – that’s quite a savings. For the record, if I had purchased the same 9300 rounds here in a local store I would have paid over $200.00 in sales tax alone, so the shipping cost is a wash in that respect, in fact cheaper.
The real beauty of ammo online though can be found in the choices. For the most part one cannot buy military surplus ammo anywhere except a gun shop or online and a gun shop will usually not be on the cheap side. The choices of bullet grain, metal jacketing, energy and speed of the projectile vary greatly. One’s local sporting goods and Wal-Mart will not have the selection.
The ammo online is much cheaper often times due to the fact that it is worldwide manufacture. I buy my assault rifle ammo from Russia and Yugoslavia. Both are makers of fine ammo. Of course there is the argument “foreign made ammo might not be reliable.” True. Same for foreign cars, electronics and all the rest though, right? If one is really concerned buy the cheap mil. surplus and keep a box or two of the “good stuff,” the expensive American made ammo, for when the zombies come. Do whatever makes one comfortable, but trust me…I have fired more rounds than I wish to count of mil.surplus ammo from around the world and have no complaints or concerns about it’s reliability at all.
Be aware ammo prices do often vary. Soon after Obama’s election and his chatter of “500% taxes on guns and ammo” (paraphrased), ammo skyrocketed by 50% and more for a time. With the SCOTUS ruling on the Second Amendment prices have returned to about where they were before the scare. A few years ago one could get 1000 rounds of Wolf, Russian manufacture 7.62×39 (AK47 & SKS ammo) for about $175.00. That same Wolf ammo is about $200.00 or so at present.
In conclusion, after much exhaustive research, I buy my ammo online. The prices cannot be beaten unless you have a pal with a gun shop who is willing to pass it along to you for a song.