Estimated reading time: 10 minutes
The world will never forget 2020. One of the many standout things that happened that year was a serious shortage of some of the most popular calibers of ammunition out there. It did not take long for all the 9mm and .38 ammo to be sold out. These were hardly the only calibers of ammunition affected but it really spoke to the shortage and its effect.
What was most alarming is that production lines were shuttered for a short period of time so people and even the stores themselves had no idea when the ammunition would be back in stock. What would happen if America was dealing with a crisis that lasted years? Decades?
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The answer is the ammo would dry up very quickly and you would never see it again.
Let’s look at the state of affairs right now. We have America in a proxy war with Russia. We have China and a growing contingent of nations attacking the US Dollar and testing the waters and American temperament, with Taiwan. We also have total chaos in the Middle East.
Should we face a World War, the birth of a World Government, Cultural Revolution in the States (already happening), and the fall of the US dollar, there is no doubt that ammo is going to all but disappear. What you have now is what you will have.
Do you have enough?
Let’s look at the 9 calibers you should stockpile right now.
The Big 3
The only thing more contentious than writing about firearms is writing about ammunition. That said, we are not here to talk about which calibers are better than others, but I do think we have to come to realize that The Big 3, if we are to pick 3, will be the most in demand and will be the most used.
If I could have only one firearm for the rest of my life, it would be a 12-gauge shotgun. These are incredible weapons, but they are so common that people can often forget about what a great gun the 12 gauge is.
The most popular caliber for this firearm is 00 Buckshot. That said, when the ammo crunch comes, it won’t just swallow up buckshot, but it will take birdshot and slugs and everything in between. So, stocking up on 00 buckshot is a very high priority for me and it should be for you, too.
The economy and utility of this round makes it a no brainer when it comes to stockpiling. While the .22 LR does not have the pointed tip, psi, or the amount of powder that similar sized rounds like the .223 Remington, it is still a deadly round with good placement.
The .22LR is lightweight, easy to pack and carry, great for killing small game and livestock, great for dealing with predators both four legged and two legged and of course, cheap to stockpile.
Right now, the .22LR is the ammo that is always around and it’s always cheap. Now, it is not as cheap as it was but still a great deal compared to 5.56 or even 9mm. Not that I would substitute one for the other. That said, there will come a time when .22LR is gone, too. Do you have enough?
The most popular handgun ammunition today is 9mm. Chances are you have a 9mm in your own arsenal. As gun ownership has increased in America so has the demand for 9mm ammunition. The US Military also uses a lot of 9mm ammunition for things like training.
The overwhelming demand for this caliber of ammunition means that it will be gone from the civilian world in a hurry in the face of a supply chain disruption or even a serious war. Not only will these things limit the amount that is available, but panic will drive people to buy more.
Popular Rifle Rounds
The modern sporting rifle, known to the ATF as an “assault rifle” is one of the most popular firearms in the United States of America. I think the calibers are going to be in high demand for sporting rifles and several come to mind. Now, I am biased on the 30-06 because that is what I shoot for deer hunting. You might shoot a .308 or something else.
This is another military round and one that is very popular. The price of 5.56 skyrocketed in 2020 and I distinctly remember purchasing a box of PMC X-TAC that cost around $20 before shipping and taxes. I was well over $1 per round of 5.56 in 2020.
That was what they were charging when it was available! This is a very popular caliber and one that you should stockpile plenty of if you do not have it already.
Are you a hero or a villain? Are you an AK or an AR shooter? That is a joke but if you do shoot an AK-47 or a similar style weapon that fires 7.62 caliber then you should stock up on this ammunition, too. This is another round that was hard to find in 2020. With the slight disruption we saw this stuff all but disappear or become so expensive that it was a better idea to wait it out.
This powerful hunting round is a must have. As I mentioned earlier, you may not have a 30-06 caliber rifle but whatever caliber you have you need to treat it as I do the 30-06 caliber for my hunting rifle. When you can really reach out and touch someone or something with a scope a devastating round like this makes a huge difference.
As far as availability, I noticed that the quantity of hunting calibers was in better shape than the more common personal defense calibers like 9mm and 5.56 but that doesn’t mean you should wait till they aren’t. Start stockpiling now so you don’t have to worry about what could be.
Some types of ammunition are on this list because they are in high demand, others are here because I don’t really know how much longer you are going to be able to buy them. Those types are the outlaws and if they hold any weight in your mind then you should be after them now while you can still get them.
Green Tipped 5.56
The aim of green tipped 5.56 is to punch through body armor, right? Wrong. In fact, it is black tipped ammo that is armor piercing. While the green tipped M588 round is called a penetrator round, and is packed with 62 grains of powder, this round is not as dangerous as the uninformed make it out to be.
That of course is where the problem lies. The uniformed are the people writing up gun control legislation these days. They see a green tip and they think it can shoot through anything. They see a 30-round magazine and they think you pull the trigger once and the gun shoots thirty rounds.
Green tipped 5.56 ammo was targeted years ago by the ATF and I think we will see it targeted again in the near future. It is a round with tremendous stopping power. If that is important to you then you should get it while you can.
Russian Ammo was banned in 2014 by Obama, banned in 2017 by Trump, and banned in 2021 by Biden. Every president for the last 10 years has put some kind of ban on Russian Ammo coming into the nation. Of course, we are still able to buy Russian ammo.
As the war in Ukraine broadens and drags more and more nations into it, Russia may not only have its ammo banned here, but they might also stop selling it to the enemy, or it might not have enough to sell at all!
The reason for buying Russian ammo is because it is inexpensive and reliable. If you do a lot of shooting, then Russian ammo can save you a lot of money.
In the prepping community we have known about dragon’s breath for a long time. It has always been something to shoot off for fun. Not a great home defense round because it would likely burn the whole house down.
Now that it has gone mainstream in the movie John Wick 4, I think we will see it more and probably some violent instances with it. This will immediately garner the attention of the uninformed gun control crowd and they will likely come after this type of ammo and maybe even some of the other fun stuff shotgun rounds out there.
As you can see there are many different calibers to stockpile right now and there are a number of reasons to do so. If this article really hit home with you then I would also suggest getting yourself an ammo reloading setup and stocking up the components for your most used ammunition.
The combination of an ammunition stockpile and the capability of reloading can go a very long way in keeping your firearms fed and shelves stocked with viable ammunition.
If ammo reloading seems too far afield for you then you need to start stockpiling the calibers on our list right now to assure that you have what you need when the prices jump, or the shelves empty out.
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