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old powder?

Old 02-09-2008, 11:09 PM
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Default old powder?

I have some IMR 4320 and 4350 which has been on my shelf for about 6 or 7 years. How long do you guys store powder before throwing it out? What about primers?
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Old 02-09-2008, 11:44 PM
Typical Buck
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Default RE: old powder?

I have a can of Unique and Red Dot that were bought in the 70's .As long as the cans are sealed and in 50-80 degree storage a very long time . The corp I work for does that sort of storage I see TONS of both black and smokless new and recoveredthats over 30 years old every day . In fact I saw some 16" howidzerpowder charges just a year or so ago that were loaded in 1946 .
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Old 02-10-2008, 12:09 AM
Fork Horn
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Default RE: old powder?

As what harter66 said as ;ong as it is sealed it should be good. Only one time that i have gotten rid of powder is because it look rusty in color. I just did not trust it.
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Old 02-10-2008, 03:58 AM
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Default RE: old powder?

I'll go one better. I have loaded and shot the rusty looking powder. But the "rust" really gooked up my powder measure. I finally dumped it. For the layman, I think the rule of thumb is, "If it looks like gunpowder and if it SMELLS like gunpowder, shoot it." Just be aware some powders naturally smell differently. A lot of the Hercules powders smell sort of like "black pepper" to me.
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Old 02-10-2008, 09:08 AM
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Default RE: old powder?

It is not the LENGTH of time you stored it that determines IF you need to throw powder out, it is CONDITION! IF the powder was made correctly (all solvents removed in processing), and you stored the containers tightly shut in a cool, dry pplace, the powder SHOULD still be good.

Examine it visually and with the "sniff test". If the powder flows freely, does not clump up, has NO reddish dust or red flecks in it, and it smells like ether, it is OK.(As Pavo said, some Alliant-Herc. powders have a non-ether smell, but the smell is NOT that of an acid)If it has a powdery red dust or red flakes in it, and also if it has formed clumps, plus ithas an acrid or acidy smell, it is decomposing. Dump it out on the lawn as fertilizer!! Usually, when a smokeless powder deteriorates in storage, it is because all the solvents weren't properly removed in the manufacturing process. Most well-made powders will virtually last forever, if stored right.
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Old 02-10-2008, 11:41 AM
Typical Buck
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Location: Wide open Nevada
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Default RE: old powder?

I believe the smell was best described as chicken manure to me . I haven't run across any to say for sure . As for the primers shoot them up unless they're mixed in a can box and are unidentifiable . Then unofficially I would hose them down in WD in a zip lock and if possible hand carry to a land fill or animal pit or in a post hole they may dry out and become viable but if buried time and moisture will break them down to inert .
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Old 02-10-2008, 12:20 PM
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Default RE: old powder?

If it's still Black and smells like Ether, it's still good. If it is Grey and does not smell like Ether, it's no good.
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Old 02-10-2008, 02:34 PM
Typical Buck
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Location: n.e. pennsylvania
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Default RE: old powder?

ditto what rebel said. i go by how it looks and how it smells. stored rightpowder willkeep for a very long time.
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Old 02-13-2008, 11:36 AM
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Default RE: old powder?

i had a lady i did some work for give me about 30lbs of powder that her husband bought in the 60's. it still looks new and shoots fine.
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