With Bullets Scarce, More Shooters Make Their Own

Photo Credit: Justin SullivanGun stores around the country have had difficulty keeping up with demand for ammunition in recent months. Fears of government tightening of gun and ammunition controls have meant that retailers, from Wal-Mart to mom-and-pop gun shops, haven’t been able to keep bullets on the shelves.

Cliff Poser’s gun shop, Cliff’s Guns, Safes and Reloading in Boise, Idaho, is one of them. Business has been so crazy lately that he has to keep a special stash of ammunition, just so customers who buy guns from him can also buy bullets.

Poser says the current ammunition shortage is the worst that he’s seen. “I’ve been doing the business for 33 years, and, I mean, as big as we’ve gotten, we still can’t take care of all the people that are coming in.”

Shopper Robert Nicholson says buying cheap ammunition for target practice on the Internet used to be easy. “You know, buy a thousand-round steel case, .223 [caliber] for 150 bucks,” he says. “Now, you can’t touch it for less than $400.”

So Nicholson, like thousands of other shooters, is going a different route. He’s making more of the bullets he shoots. Shop owner Poser says the scarcity of ready-made bullets has frustrated shooters to the point they’re spending between $200 and $1,000 to get into the hobby known as “reloading.”

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