Inert Rounds


Must inert cartridges have the primer fired as well as the propellant removed to satisfy U.S. Import- Export regulations.



US Postal Regulations prohibit the mailing of primed cases so that would pretty much pre-empt any import/export regulations, on this side of the pond at least.

I don’t claim to know the regulations of the different countries regarding the sending and receiving of inert ammo. I have only dealt with collectors in 5 other countries and have found that each seems to be different. But more importantly, there are many Customs and Postal agents who are ignorant of the laws and regulations, and even more that are remarkedly ignorant when it comes to ammuntion. My policy is to completely remove the primer when possible, inert it when it’s not possible to remove it, drill out the primer pocket if the other collector does not mind, and include a note in the package saying that everything is inert and all laws and regulations of both countries have been followed to the best of my knowledge. JMHO



I have been successful in simply oiling the primer. I usually pull the bullet (or drill rimfire cases), empty the powder and put theree or four drops of penetrating oil in the case. Whether or not this truly kills the primer I don’t know, as I have yet to actually try one. Most of the cartridges I am sending are quite old, so there is a good chance that they are inert already. I send them off in small zip lock bags with the oil still in the cases doing its dirty work. Perhaps the sight of those oily cartridges in the baggies is enough to convince the inspectors that they are indeed inert, or perhaps they just don’t want to get their hands messy. I include a note in the package explaining how the cartridges were made inert and imploring ‘to whom it may concern’ to please speed the package on to its destination. I indicate on the customs form that the package contains ‘inert cartridges for research and display’. I have mailed quite a few packages this way, and have so far experienced no problems. Perhaps its just luck. Coincidently, I have a package ready to start on its way to the Czech Republic tomorrow.


Fellows have had excellent results inerting even the toughest primers with an old standby. Marvel Mystery Oil. Also is a good gun preservative. Will actually remove rust but will not harm blue.