How to Buy Ammo and Firearms when Supplies are Tight


In this post, I'll discuss some ways to help you purchase ammo and defensive gear when supplies are tight. This is not really advertised but the methods in this post really work. I know, I use them all the time.

Secrets to buying in tight supply markets

There are a number of Internet aggregators such as AmmoSeek.  Simply enter the description of the ammo you're looking for and AmmoSeek will show the current suppliers that have that ammo in stock. As far as firearms, the best way is to go Buds Gun Shop and join their “Team Bud's Membership” – it's only about $30 a year. Log in with your membership and search for the firearm you want. Then register to be informed when that gun is back in stock. You'll be the first to know and their inventory and costs are among the best around.

There's more below, but that's two of the best ways to defeat tight supplies.


More on finding ammo


This is a short answer to a tough question. The best way I've found to find ammo is to use an aggregator such as AmmoSeek.  Simply enter the description of the ammo you're looking for and AmmoSeek will show the current suppliers that have that ammo in stock.

Another way is to stop at gun retailers in smaller out-of-the-way towns. In some of my visits, where major locations were simply bare, the smaller and out-of-the-way locations had fuller shelves.

That's it. I know of no better ways to do this.

Oh, by the way, your first priority should be defensive rounds. Here you only need a reasonable amount of ammo. You're not going to war, you're just making sure you are prepared for a potential threat.

With target rounds, you can be the judge. One school of thought is that you can just buy enough to support your practice efforts, and it may even be possible to pick these up at the range when you practice. Another thought is to buy what you can and stock up but try to buy when prices are reasonable. No doubt, the constant demand puts increased pressure on the price of ammo. Buy what you need, but hoarding just increases the price and reduces availability for everyone.

More on finding firearms

handgun and light
handgun and light

This is a little tougher problem. Sometimes it seems that no one has any available firearms, especially those that are in higher demand such as Glock and Sig.

But I do have a suggestion.

First, do your research and make sure you know what you want. This becomes even more difficult since it's likely you'll have to rely on written recommendations only.

A few pointers. I try to stay within one caliber. Such as 9mm. The problem with numerous guns with different caliber ammo is that you have to stock multiple rounds in target, snake, and defense for .380, 9mm, 22lr, etcetera.

Stick with fewer calibers and make your life easy.

Second, I even try to stick with one firearm manufacturer and type.

Personally, I like Glock and Glock has everything available from 22lr to 10mm. You might not know this but different manufacturers have different angles on the grip of their handguns. For example, the grip angle on the Sig P365, a very popular everyday carry gun, is different than a Glock. When you train, you get used to the muscle memory of a particular grip angle, and changing to a different grip angle can really mess up your accuracy. Just keep this in mind.

Third, check out the YouTube videos of the various firearms that you might be interested in and even go to the range and rent one to determine if it's for you. There are a ton of good videos and some really qualified reviewers. You might want to check out Hickok 45 as he has over 5 million subscribers and covers almost every hand and long gun available.

So, now that you've decided, here's what you do.

Now just to forewarn you, I'm not making any money on this recommendation, so it's just my tested but unbiased opinion. Go to Buds Gun Shop and see if your desired handgun is available.  I'll assume your local dealer doesn't have any in stock (as you should probably try that first). If it's sold out at Bud's, join their “Team Bud's Membership” – it's only about $30 a year. Log in with your membership and search for the firearm you want. Then register to be informed when that gun is back in stock. You'll be the first to know and this will allow you to get the handgun you want, sooner and easier than constantly hunting around. You can register without joint the Team Bud but in high-demand periods you can easily miss out – so your choice.

Why Buds?  I've dealt with them for years. They are a large dealer and get a lot of stock. Other dealers just won't have the inventory they have. Also, they offer great prices and excellent service. Delivery is fast, and your local FFL is probably already registered which will make the transaction smooth and painless.

Has it worked for me? Absolutely. I've received a number of advanced emails from Buds stating that a specific quantity of a particular product is available and that a substantially larger list of people desiring to purchase would be notified the next day. I was placed at the front of the line for a day only because of my membership. It does work.

Basics for new gun owners

It used to be, people grew up with guns. It was part of our heritage and parents taught their children how to handle firearms safely and effectively.

Now, too many don't have the foggiest ideas of how to safely and effectively handle a gun.

Here are just a few comments.

  • First, always assume your gun is loaded.
  • Second, Hollywood is such a poor example but, keep your finger off the trigger until you're ready to fire the gun.
  • Third, never point your gun at anything you don't wish to destroy. Keep it pointed up or down in a ready position but away from any person or object you don't wish to hit.
  • Fourth, only fire in a direction where there is nothing behind that which you wish to shoot.
    • This is going to be hard for those who want to follow Biden's suggestion to shoot in the legs – if you miss, make sure no one else is behind the perpetrator you aim for and miss (since more than likely, you will miss)…

There are different types of ammo you may want to consider:

  • Target rounds – which should be full metal jacket brass (not steel) rounds. Get the cheapest, most reliable ones you can get, and don't worry about stocking up too much. Don't use this for defense purposes.
  • Defense rounds – these are what you need to have pre-loaded in your firearms and locked in a convenient but accessible safe. A good choice here is Federal HST defense rounds. Because these rounds expand, they are more effective at stopping a threat and not traveling through the target and past walls which might endanger loved ones.
  • Specialty rounds – snake rounds are an example. These are effectively shotgun pellets that are calibrated for your firearm. You can use these to take care of poisonous snakes and in an emergency, birds, and small animals for survival.

Practice recommendations

Don't let the first time you fire your weapon be at a time when it's a life and death situation.

There are two reasons for this.

First, you need to practice to be safe and effective.

Second, it's not uncommon to have a new weapon that doesn't work correctly. You need to determine that and resolved it before you are in a life-threatening situation.

You don't need much to go to the range and practice. Bring your unloaded handgun and target rounds. I've recommended a bag that I use that you can read about here – the Osage River Tactical Bag. Finally, ear and eye protection and some targets that are fun to shoot at.

Here are some recommendations that are both inexpensive and effective:

Final Recommendation

Now that you've learned how to acquire ammo and firearms when supplies are tight,  you need to commit to training to safely and effectively protect yourself and your family. Hopefully, you'll never have to use them but in case you do, you'll be prepared.

If you would like to read more about what to do with your new firearm, check my post that goes into detail here.