Tag Archives: lake city factory

Army issues huge handgun ammo contract– including .38 and .45

Mississippi-based Olin Winchester this week secured a nine-figure Pentagon award for assorted handgun ammunition.

Based in Oxford, Olin-Winchester was awarded a $145 million fixed-price contract to make .38 caliber, .45 caliber, and 9mm ammunition for the Army. The contract was issued by the Army’s Rock Island Arsenal in Illinois.

The company has been making M1153 and M1152 9mm loads as part of the U.S. Army Modular Handgun System (MHS) program since 2016, but the inclusion of .38 and .45 is interesting and points to stocks of specialized or legacy firearms still in use by the military.

While the Army used M1911s in SF units as late as the recent trips to the sandbox, the last “official” 38s bought by the Army were Ruger Security Sixes for use by Dept. of the Army guards at assorted armories and depots in the 1980s…but the Army is still buying .38-caliber ammo

More in my column at Guns.com.

What is Lake City Anyway?

Across 3900-acres of sprawling land just outside of in Independence, Missouri lies the US Army’s primary factory that produces almost all of its supply of small arms ammunition. Founded just months before the United States’ entry into World War 2, the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant (LCAAP) is still churning out the brass.

Founded in 1940, LCAAP was put into service in October 1941 producing small arms ammunition, mainly 30.06 caliber– then the military’s standard rifle and machinegun round. By the end of the war nearly 6-billion cartridges left the city for the GI’s in the field. It was a drop in the bucket of the estimated 100-billion rounds that were produced for the military during that great war by dozens of private companies and publicly owned ammunition plants.

It is currently a Government-owned, contractor-operated (GOCO) facility, in which the Army still owns the 485 buildings, property, and machines, while a contractor staffs and operates it. Remington ran the plant for the Army from 1941-1985, and Olin (Winchester ammo) ran it from 1985-2001. The contractor since 2001 is ATK, a company that you may know best for its commercial line of ammunition that includes CCI and Federal…..

Read the rest in my column at Firearms Talk