Apocalypse Gun Porn
To wrap this puppy up and move on to better things, a brief discussion of emergency reloading, homemade powders and the rimfire/revolver combo. The following is a partial reprinting of a much earlier article you can read in its entirety in my book “Bison Newsletter Book”. It was a five thousand word article but much of that has already been covered here so would be redundant.
THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTIONS ARE MEANT TO BE USED IN EMERGENCY,
LIFE AND DEATH SITUATIONS ONLY. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO RELOAD WITH
ANYTHING OTHER THAN FACTORY COMPONENTS TO HELP ELIMINATE
ACCIDENTS. THESE METHODS ARE TO BE USED IN A SITUATION WERE
THERE ARE NO MORE RELOADING SUPPLIES AVAILABLE. IF YOUR ONLY
OPTION IS TO BE WITHOUT AMMUNITION TO DEFEND YOURSELF, ONLY
THEN SHOULD YOU FOLLOW THIS ADVICE. THE FOLLOWING COULD BE
Again, this warning. This is serious stuff, people. The section on powder is were you are
going to run into the most problems. Explode a primer reloading and at most get a minor
injury. Screw up on powder and your gun explodes and takes you with it. Powder jerry
rigging is dangerous, pure and simple. Use common sense and take every precaution.
This is only to be used in an emergency.
To get a round of one caliber and use its powder in another is generally safe if you follow
the three guidelines:
1) if cases are generally the same size
2) if the “new” bullet you are firing is the same weight or LIGHTER
3) if you go from a smaller bore to a larger bore
So, you could use the powder interchangeably in 30-40
Krag/303/7.62x54R/308/8mm/7.65x54/ 30-06/ 223. A 223 bore is smaller than a 303,
which is good, but a 22 has a much smaller bullet so you could not use the powder from a
22 in a 303.
Another guideline is fast/slow powder burn. A 50 BMG has slow powder and could be
used in just about anything simply because you couldn’t stuff enough powder into another
case to be dangerous. However, powder from a 223 is fast burning and if you filled that
50 cal case with it it would blow up on you. Based on this, I would avoid using pistol
ammo powder in rifles since the case size is different, and avoid shotgun powder since you
are going to a smaller bore. Avoid putting 9mm in a 45 since the bullet weight is greater
in the 45. Just remember the three guidelines and you should be okay. But remember, the
general consensus is that substituting powders is a stupid thing to do. You will only want
to do this if it is your only option.
Another idea is to use black powder although I would be uncertain which is the better
idea. Using a substitute smokeless power might blow you up, using black powder will get
you spotted and killed by the enemy. If you do use black powder which should be simpler
to make than guncotton, keep in mind that it will corrode your firearm if you don’t clean it
a few hours after use. You can use black powder in a smokeless powder gun, but not vise
Use another rounds powder, make your own primitive powder, or use black powder.
These are your options to reload after civilization crumples. As is the rest of life, all
choices involve sacrifice to some degree. I would say it’s not fair, but fair is where you go
to sell your pig.
Primers are about as bad to manufacture, high tech wise. You can old school it and go lower tech and use mercury, but we won’t cover that here. As far as reusing, or salvaging primers, you can use a de-priming tool and get a live primer from another round. If the primer is the wrong size you can pry open the anvil and use rubbing alcohol to remove the chemical and place in another already fired primer. As for cases, you can play around with paper cartridges once your brass has been beat up past usefulness. A reloading press that neck sizes only will increase the life of that brass.
Black powder weapons are often recommended for long after the Apocalypse, and while a charcoal burner is better than a bow and arrow, a hunk of rebar or a spear, they also really suck in comparison to modern arms. If you are inclined to think you might live long enough for first all your battle rifle ammo to be used up, then past the point you run out of tens of thousands of rounds of rimfire, you might plan now on blackpowder. If you stockpile extra primers you can force a modern gun with brass cases to go blackpowder for a time. After that, it is back to those crappy front loaders. Setting aside the whole issue of manufacturing capacity ( the Foxfire series of books has an overview in one volume on making your own rifle, but I believe the barrel was store bought. The mountain man dude during the Depression in Idaho made his own, even smelted his own ore, but I think that is beyond most of us ), a quick word on the powder. If you want your nitrates, reference the US Army TM 31-210 ( free e-book at my web site ) for extracting from manured dirt. And if you use human excrement as the manure ( as apposed to animal manure which needs to be returned to the fields ) you solve two problems- getting rid of your waste and robbing field fertility.
Way back in the pre-Internet days when I was first force feeding my poorly written drivel onto an unsuspecting public through “zines” ( amateur newsletters ), a fellow survivalist writer came up with the rimfire/revolver concept. Your rifle was a 22 and your personal sidearm was a high power revolver. This allowed for a cheap arsenal that allowed you mobility as you needed very little total rounds ( with little weight ). The whole idea was to be all ninja like and stealthy, avoiding confrontation. You could harass and stalk both meat and humans. In case of in your face up close attack ( say, by a mountain lion or grizzly or an ambush by humans ) you could use the superior firepower of your pistol. I’ve always liked this concept, and it plays well with the post-Apocalypse ammo scarcity issue. If you used rimfire and avoided combat whenever possible, a few bricks would last years ( assuming most hunting was snares rather than shooting, obviously ). And assuming you only used the revolver for the occasional emergency, a few boxes would last likewise.
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