There were some panicked posts earlier this week in some other firearms-focused sites which claimed the ATF had redefined wetted nitrocellulose as a high explosive, and that this redefinition would dramatically affect the availability and cost of ammunition.


Wetting nitrocellulose is (apparently, I don’t claim to be an expert here) the primary means of rendering this material non-explosive for shipping and storing nitrocellulose. When nitrocellulose is then needed for the manufacture of firearms propellant, it is then dewetted (dried out) in the requisite amounts for making batches of propellant.

Someone had a question about wetted nitrocellulose, the ATF tried to answer that question in their newsletter, and did so in a manner that drew an unintended and unexpected “the sky is falling!” response.

They’ve now issued an addendum to their newsletter which amounts to, “Dudes, chill.”


There is no threat to the ammunition industry.