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One day I left Jon Wayne Taylor alone in TTAG’s secret above ground bunker. He re-arranged my ammo stash. Why wouldn’t he? JWT’s military experience taught him that proper organization can be the difference between life and death.

In my experience, most gun guys share Jon’s need to keep everything squared away. Clean guns properly organized. Ammo stashed by caliber. Kit where it should be. Are you one of these or are you like me: stuff generally stashed in assigned areas? Or are you OCD? If so, how “bad” is it?

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  1. Damnit Robert that’s not how I left it. Shotgun shells go on the right, by caliber. Jesus….

  2. Yeah…but I’ve accomplished a lot with it?An hour ago I unloaded several guns and lubed them even though none needed it…

  3. I am the opposite of OCD. My house is a wreck and I have bullets and gun stuff everywhere. I know where I keep stuff so I can find it whenever I need it though.

  4. If you’re OCD about your guns and ammo…. or aspire to be OCD, I’ve got your “fix.”

    It’s a guns and ammo inventory / logbook app called “The Second Amendment Firearms Database.” Pretty nifty.

    Do a google search for it. I love it. I have no personal interest in the product…. just a very enthusiastic user.

      • For everything! My life would come crashing down around me without Excel. I travel a lot as a government contractor and we file expense reports weekly. EVERYONE who travels in my company is using my spreadsheet to track their ERs, payments, and daily expenses. I H8 Word, loved WordPerfect. But Excel rocks my world.

      • +1 on excel also. I’m pathetic with excel, ocd-wise.

        I can tell you everything about every round of the 32k cartridges I’ve handloaded; how each round crono’ed, what my end cost is, etc. I should probably seek therapy.

  5. My ammo is defiantly organized, but not in “caliberbetic” order. (yes I invented that term just now) It’s unimportant as to the order as long as the person knows where the stuff is and it isn’t disorganized so not even they can readily find what they are looking for. There is a term for that, they’re called an unorganized slobs. We all know the type, you look at their tool box and it’s a hodge podge of disorganized, missing garbage, their vehicle has dirty oil, corroded battery cable terminals, the drive belt is old and cracked and the cabin filter has never been changed.
    A person doesn’t have to be OCD to have things organized and maintained so they know what’s missing or out of place and can efficiently locate it.

    I absolutely despise looking for things or replacing it because it’s lost, loaned or misplaced. It’s a horrendous waste of time and or money.

  6. I wouldn’t say OCD, but organized.

    I do keep my ammo stash organized by caliber, because I want to know at a glance exactly how much I have and not have to fumble around finding it, only to discover that I’m heading out the the range with less than half what I anticipated. That’s also partly due to the fact that I don’t have the $ to build up a really good stash; I have to replenish my range ammo (and build the shtf reserve) a box or two at a time when the price is good, so I need to know in advance what I need the most.

    Each gun has its own special spot in the safe. (The .30-30 always in the first slot of the rifle rack, in case I need to send a 2-legged predator to Jesus and a pistol just won’t do.) My emergency flashlight is also in there, always in exactly the same spot.

    I don’t clean my guns on schedule like I used to; it’s not new or special anymore, just necessary from time to time. Haven’t actually cleaned any of them in more than a year. Range trips are few and far between these days, so they just don’t get that dirty. I do wipe them down with a silicone cloth every time they’re handled, though. Gotta keep them looking good. Which reminds me, I need to run an oil patch down the bore of the rifles. They’ve been sitting too long.

    Okay, maybe just a *little bit* OCD.

  7. Dammit, OCD is a diagnosis. It’s a disorder you have, not something you are. The headline makes no sense in that context, and should be rewritten to appease pendants like me.

    Which I guess puts to rest any question about my having or not having obsessive or compulsive behaviors.

    • I disagree. It’s a way of life.

      I don’t know how people can go through life living in chaos.

      OCD = Serenity

      • Have to disagree again. One of the last words I would use as a synonym for OCD is “serenity”.

        • Have to agree with you here (I hate it when that happens).

          OCD is a clinical term that gets thrown around far too casually, and being organized/efficient has nothing at all to do with it (in fact, it’s frequently the opposite).

          Using OCD (which I definitely don’t have) as a metaphor for organization makes about as much sense as using diabetes (which I do have) as a metaphor for sugar intake. But it seems we’re stuck with it…

        • Agreed.

          My bit of OCD is an itch. An itch that gets worse if I don’t scratch it. Thank God it isn’t terrible, and doesn’t affect everything.

          If things are clean and organized, it certainly makes me feel happier (not just FA-related stuff, but my home in general), and I can deal with chaos, as long as that chaos has a purpose. Otherwise chaos must be killed with fire 😀

    • Well unless you’re swinging at the end of a chain, that’d be ‘pedant’. 😉

  8. I’m fairly organized, but not obsessive about it. I just don’t want to spend an excessive amount of time finding stuff.

    • I think I get it…i have islands of high level organization within a sea of chaos. There is an advanced medical kit, carbine, and other emergency gear in my Tahoe, all neatly organized in kits…that are randomly tossed around the cargo area. I know what each contains by sight, and internally they are organized, but the kits get thrown around randomly as needed, or as space is needed for something else. Thus the little time it takes to make good kits let’s me function efficiently within the chaos of life.

  9. “…are you OCD? If so, how “bad” is it?”

    Absofreakinglutely. Baaaad. I’m also a sailor. A place for everything and everything in it’s place. If I suddenly went blind I could put my hands on any one of my guns, already know it’s condition, grab spare mags, and put a cap in your ass before the dog started chewing on your leg. OCD isn’t a diagnosis or a condition, it’s a way of life.

    A man’s got to know his limitations.


  10. I’m only OCD about my firearms, ammunition, and accessories. I like everything gun-related to be neat, organized, and ready to grab at a moment’s notice. All ammo resides in appropriately labeled ammo cans according to caliber and bullet type (FMJ, HP, etc.) and neatly stacked on a heavy duty shelving unit. Same with magazines. I even have a catalogue of every firearm in the collection with date of purchase, caliber, serial number, value, and pictures.

    Meanwhile, my tools and Jeep parts/accessories are a mess and all over the place.

    • Do you keep the food on your plate separate? Do you eat one thing until it’s gone and move on?
      Do you count how many sheets of TP you pull off?
      Do you count things? Things regular people don’t? Like how many slabs of concrete in your walkway or how many steps in the stairs at work? Do you count the same thing all the time?

      • Yes to all of those but my yard and garage are a train wreck. Too many projects, too little time or money.

      • No to all of the above and thank goodness. I am happy about only being particular with the firearms.

  11. I’m OCD thanks to the draft Army. Ammo is segregated by caliber. Weapons are cleaned daily if they are carried. At a minimum a bore snake. All weapons are in the safe are cleaned monthly.

  12. I’m insanely meticulous about cleaning, but that’s about it. With ammo, as long as I can Tetris it all into my ammo cans, that’s all that matters to me. I’m generally pretty disorganized.

  13. My ammo was at one point arranged by caliber nicely and neatly. As time went on, some of the more popular calibers had to be relocated to the larger shelves and the rarer calibers were relocated to the smaller shelves. It drives me a bit crazy but at least there’s a reason for it.

    My ocd really shines when it comes to yard sales, flea markets and clearance bins that have misc. gun parts and knick knacks. If it’s rare or the price is REALLY cheap(or free) it goes home with me in the hopes that one day I’ll find or buy something that needs it. I have shelves, boxes, peg boards and drawers full of random gun stuff that I have no gun for… My friends love it but I could really use more space(can’t we all).

    The real hitch in my organizational gung-fu is the gray area firearms that won’t fit a category(or safe rack) like good little soldiers….. Crossbow, compound bow, black powder ducksfoot replica, Rossi mares leg, rifle caliber pistol, pistol caliber rifle….. Damn I like weird stuff.

  14. My stuff is” organised” in the sense ” I know it’s here somewhere”. But I’m working to improve from chaos into just messy.

  15. Why don’t these posts all line up ? some are further right than others….. Damn

  16. I’m not OCD. I’m CDO. It’s just like OCD, but the letters are in the proper alphabetical order.

  17. Yes. I’m OCD. But I am also the world’s worst procrastinator. Might explain why I owned my first gun at 48 years young.
    The other day, I was walking back to the house from my creek. As I crossed my range, I drew and took a pot shot (whatever that is) at a bowling pin from 40 yards. I missed.
    Back at the house, I couldn’t stand not having a topped off magazine. I went into my ammo stash and grabbed a Speer Lawman 147g round and shoved it in the mag. Wait. Was this mag the Speer or the Federal? Better check. Yep! Federal HydraShock. Wait. 124+p or WTF?
    The stamp on the case matched but I still had to weigh the round and compare it before loading it in the mag.
    Maybe I’m not OCD. I don’t do press checks after all.

    • I would get a rash if I didn’t go home and clean my weapon and top off the magazine again. I ALWAYS have a chambered round plus full mag, or in my case, 12+1.

          • Instead of calling me an idiot, how about offer a better comparison.
            Maybe your the idiot that doesn’t understand the comparison.
            Guns run fine without being spotless. Just like car engines run fine with some carbon present. At some point, preventive maintenance is prudent. But cleaning a gun after just one shot is analogous to changing the oil after each prolonged drive.
            You may not agree, but to use the term idiotic was a bit rude.

  18. My gun safe is the one corner of the house that is consistently neat and tidy and organized. It may help that the kids can’t get in there and rearrange anything.

    • indeed.
      the double whammy: teenage tornadoes come through only to be followed by their dear mother who proceeds to ferret everything into cubbyholes, for appearances sake.
      i was never at the “just checking” level, but i have for now given up outside of the safe, the garage or my dresser.

  19. My personal defense tools and supplies are organized just enough so that I can find what I need and grab it in a hurry, should the need arise.

    My office desk does not match that description.

  20. Count thing? Yes. Organized? Yes. Attention to detail? Yes. OCD? No way, I’m just an engineer.

  21. Yes. I’m the same way but I generally won’t organize other people’s stuff. It drives me a bit nuts when organization is trumped by space.

      • If they line up it doesn’t bother me. What annoys me is when I try to put, say all of a specific type of ammo in one place and end up with one extra box that doesn’t fit or, in some cases one rifle/pistol that has to go over with “unlike” rifles/pistols because there isn’t room.

        As to tilting pistols on a shelf; that argument revolved around using something through the trigger guard to prop them up which was seen by some as being unsafe because it introduced a foreign object into the trigger guard and was farther argued to have no value to the gun store.

        I said at the time that I don’t really see the safety issue and I still don’t. It does save space on a dealer’s shelf and could be argued to give customers a better view of a gun. If you don’t think it’s a safety issue then it becomes a space issue where, if you know your customers, you’re showing significantly more products (as I demonstrated with some arithmetic at the time) and probably getting more sales. From the business perspective that’s great. From a 2A perspective, it’s more guns in more law abiding hands which is also great.

        Good memory on your part there!

        • so often a minor storage victory is ruined by somehow locating “one more.”
          “certain” items that fit perfectly into common household disposable containers are an elusive source of slack and bring satisfaction.
          i think a good info share would be to list perfect matchups.
          tidy cat buckets will fit a large number of compact discs with space leftover for a holstered piece under the hinged flip top (makes a decent van console for between the bucket seats).

  22. I literally have two loose 9mm rounds rolling around with my checkbook and an empty .45 casing in my dresser. And I dont even own a 9. Several people in this thread would simply implode if they saw my organizational skills.

  23. Well, I like my guns and ammo a certain way. However, other occupants who also shoot tend to keep things fast and loose. There’s a lot of last minute “Where’s my (whatever gun I want to take to the range) &^%$ gun? right before we need to leave. Drives me crazy.

    I clean my guns, put them in their gun box, that I got when I bought them. I put them in a soft case meant for guns when I go to the range. Sure wish others would follow this procedure. Nope, got to clean, put them back in the unmarked soft gun case and then can’t find it.

    My way makes sense to me. Ammo stays in shipped boxes until I need it. That seems to work well for the other occupants.

  24. Eh, one of my shooting buds is really OCD but still managed to blow up a rifle with a handload. He is OCD about the wrong things. I have found that you have to have unlimited to space to become totally organized. I don’t but the space I do have is crammed full of gun stuff. It is what I like to call organized chaos.

  25. The stuff i have for shtf is well organized. Unfortunately, all the trial and error stuff i ocd purchased to get to my shtf kit is not…

  26. I wash my hands 4000 times a day in 100 degree water, scrubbing left hand over right fifteen times in a counterclockwise direction, using exactly two squirts of liquid Palmolive. Does that count as OCD?

    • THAT’S OCD. The rest of you guys are mixing up OCD with the old Freudian term “anal retentive.” In other words, being hyper-organized or a “neat-freak.”

      There’s no significant overlap between OCD and anal retentiveness and they have nothing to do with each other. You can wash your hands 400 times a day while tapping your foot 3 times or whatever and still live like a slovenly pig . . .

      • Thank you. This is why I posted a link to a clinical definition of OCD above. Most of the commenters misunderstand what comprises OCD. Ralph has a very good example of true OCD.

  27. I’m particular, in general, but probably not fully OCD. I just prefer to be somewhat organized (not militarily so). My ammo is sorted by caliber and manufacturer for the most part, and when I buy new boxes of ammo I put the new boxes at the bottom of the stacks and use ammo first from the top.

    I don’t clean my guns that haven’t been shot. I’ve heard of people doing that – cleaning their guns from the safe even if they haven’t been shot. I don’t always clean my guns immediately after the range either; I usually will get to cleaning all of them within a week or less after shooting them. I do clean my EDC first and within a day or two after shooting, usually.

  28. Bunker? What bunker? Idk what you’re talking about…
    My safes are organized by purpose and my ammo is organized by caliber. I don;t touch my “stash” much, so it pretty much stays that way.

  29. OCD, actual OCD? Yeah, a small bit. Thankfully not problematic. (Hey, I can come back and check that light as many times as I want…)

    FA-related stuff? Just like to keep things organized and clean.

    • Have to clean guns after each range trip. I know that has its downsides but that is what it is.

    • Keep extra accessories in their own bins.

    • Keep build parts in their own labelled drawers in parts organizers.

    • Keep ammo in cans by type and manufacturer, with ammo can magnets (used to use labels, but I love ammo can magnets now)

    Its my retirement, I can fiddle with stuff as much as I like 😀

  30. I keep the ammo loose, dumped in ammo cans by caliber. They’re all neatly stacked in a closet. Consolidation of calibers makes this possible, and much easier for inventory. Other than that, everything else is fairly scattered in bags elsewhere.

  31. I actually am OCD but for some reason it doesn’t extend to guns, or for organizing everything immediately after returning from any kind of outing. It’s really intense when it comes to taking care of the grounds, though — mowing, trimming, weeding.

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