Nine billion rounds isn’t that much

I’m trying to do my part to stimulate the economy by upping the number of rounds I’m putting down range each month and getting new shooters to the range. I figure we just about have to do it. The ammo factories hired new people and if we don’t keep buying the ammo they will get laid off, right?

Here’s the background story:

Bullet-makers are working around the clock, seven days a week, and still can’t keep up with the nation’s demand for ammunition.

“We are working overtime and still can’t keep up with the demand,” said Al Russo, spokesman for North Carolina-based Remington Arms Company, which makes bullets for rifles, handguns and shotguns. “We’ve had to add a fourth shift and go 24-7. It’s a phenomenon that I have not seen before in my 30 years in the business.”

Americans usually buy about 7 billion rounds of ammunition a year, according to the National Rifle Association. In the past year, that figure has jumped to about 9 billion rounds, said NRA spokeswoman Vickie Cieplak.

Nine billion rounds in one year with about 80 million gun owners in the U.S. works out to about only about 112 rounds per gun owner. I went through that many rounds both last night and the night before. I’ll go through probably another 200 rounds tonight and then another 150 on Sunday. What the heck is going on here? I’m figure I’m just doing my civic duty here and it turns out I’m doing the job of about 100 other people as well.

If every gun owner were going through just 100 rounds a month that would be nearly 100 billion rounds a year. That is a way to stimulate the economy and have something to show for it afterward–an armed and well practiced citizenry and respectful politicians.


7 thoughts on “Nine billion rounds isn’t that much

  1. I would have bought more ammo if I could get it. .40 range ammo is just now starting to show up on the shelves recently.

  2. When I started shooting a decade ago, range time cost $10 for an entire day, 22LR cost ~$1/100, 9mm cost ~$4/50, 12gauge cost ~$2/20 and .308 cost ~$10/20. Those costs have doubled to quadrupled today. And until recently, I could not find practice ammo on sale at all, just premium hollowpoints, in defensive calibers.

    My range time now costs $20/hour. That really sucks the contents of my wallet dry, even though I still have practice ammo bought in 2005 left to shoot (replaced as possible with more recently loaded ammo).

    So I shoot less often, and use less ammo, and shoot more 22LR instead of larger pistol or rifle calibers, and plan my shooting practice before leaving home. I now own, and take to the range, lotsa pre-loaded magazines, and they paid for themselves in time saved on just a few range trips!

    Cost is one reason I don’t practice as much as I would like.

    However, whenever I get the chance to take a new shooter or my kids to the range, cost be damned and a good time is had by all….

  3. You know what’s cool? That 9 billion rounds figure doesn’t take into account people that reload their own BBs either.

  4. Caleb,

    Do you have a reference for that? I know some people have said that but I was never sure if it was a hard fact or just speculation.

  5. You could simply count the primer sales. Primers and percussion caps if you want to count muzzleloaders. You still miss the flintlock shooters and those who homebrew their caps. Did you know the white tip of a matchhead goes seriously “bang” when you hit it?

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