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Favorite bore rust preventative?

What do you use as a rust preventative in your rifle bores? I've heard products with teflon begin to build up and may require lapping to remove. Thanks!

[ This Message was edited by: schunter1128 on 2004-03-01 11:27 ]

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Favorite bore rust preventative?

Short term storage Marvel Mystery Oil (MMO) available in the automotive section of Walmart, etc. Long term storage Outer's Gun Grease.

expatriate's picture
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Favorite bore rust preventative?

My favorite rust preventative is silica gel. In my line of work I've done a lot of research on corrosion, because it can cost you a lot in tropical climates. Humidity is your greatest enemy. Through it, water invades your gun as a gas, penetrating everything. If the temperature fluctuates, you get condensation. Even if it's only in microscopic amounts, you have increased levels of moisture at the metal's surface. Seams like lap welds, etc, tend to wick moisture inside, yet not let it out.

Furthermore, dust on any surface tends to attract condensation because dust particles respond to temperature changes more quickly than the item they're sitting on, and moisture condensates on dust easier than a large surface. I've been inside storage structures full of bombs, and over a period of years in a humid climate they get a patina of rust on the top -- like it fell from the ceiling.

You don't have to have great fluctuations in temperature to get corrosion caused by condensation, and don't even have to get to the dew point necessarily. At a microscopic level, metal molecules will react with water molecules -- it doesn't have to be liquid. Even before you get to the dew point, the cooler gun increases the relative humidity in the air immediately adjacent to it (in microscopic terms)and this increases corrosion. The more water molecules you have in contact with the metal, the more corrosion you get. So even a few degrees of temperature fluctuation can have effects over time.

Bottom line is that I keep my guns in a steel cabinet. I caulked up all the cabinet's seams, screw holes, etc as much as I could (except the door, obviously) to minimize air exchange. I use rechargeable silica gel packs out of Cabela's to absorb humidity, but otherwise just give the guns a good cleaning and wipe them down with a silicone-impregnated rag before putting them away.

An important note on the silica gel is to place it at the bottom of the cabinet. Humid air is heavier than dry air, and as the silica gel dries things out you get convection inside the cabinet -- the dry air rises and less-dry air sinks. So silica gel isn't that effective on things placed below it when there's no air movement. It can't dry air that never reaches it.

That's basically how the military stores missiles and cluster bombs -- dessicated in a sealed container. Rust is impossible in the absence of moisture. Oils and greases just put a barrier between moisture and metal, and only protect what they touch. Remove the humidity and you protect everything.

[ This Message was edited by: expatriate on 2004-03-06 23:03 ]

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Favorite bore rust preventative?

I read up a bit on this teflon stuff. While I have never used it, I can see where it might build up, once the teflon particle solvent evaporates off. Teflon is usually only great when its bonded to the surface it protects, which is no simple trick since the stuff doesn't want to stick to anything.

Just my two cents on that, I may be wrong.

Ex, if your not an engineer, you've gotta work with a bunch of them.

Question: How do you prevent rust?
Answer: Remove the water!

If your into desiccators, lookup any of the hygroscopic materials. Had a chance to work with some in a humid environment once and was just astounded at how rapidly they would liquify just sitting out in ambient conditions.

Some other compounds:

NaOH pellets (Great desiccator, bad results in concentration: lye)

CaCl2 pellets (calcium chloride).

Here's a crazy idea too, using a peltier device in the bottom of your cabinet. Had a chance to mess with a few peltier chips once and at room temperature in fairly arid environment, the cool side would cause condensation. Admittedly a bit far out, but just think of the gee-whizz factor!

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Favorite bore rust preventative?

Guess I kinda built a watch on that one rather than saying what time it was. I sometimes wonder about "teflon" products. It seems like they throw the term around a lot and it markets like crazy -- but how effective is it? Just because there's some floating around in there doesn't necessarily means it'll bond to the metal and gain something. I'd look for some independent data to back up claims.

[ This Message was edited by: expatriate on 2004-03-07 22:09 ]

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Favorite bore rust preventative?

If its pure teflon (PTFE) it isn't going to stick to jack. Simply putting a few drops down the barrel won't do anything to get it to "stick" to the barrel.

Here is some great straight forward info on ptfe. Note the special page that talks about the contortions dupont goes through to get ptfe to bond to a metal surface.

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Favorite bore rust preventative?

That's what I thought. It won't necessarily stick but you'll pay for it anyway.

BTW, I guess I'm a bit of a fanatic about corrosion after spending a few years on a subtropical island in the past. I had clothes get moldy in closets and bikes turned to junk in months. After a good storm you could go outside and the air would taste salty from the sea spray. Leave a piece of unprotected steel outside overnight and in the morning it'd be covered with rust. Moisture control is everything, and while compounds help, they're not 100 percent. All it takes is a chip or a bare spot and corrosion crawls under the coating.

I guess I'm a little sensitive, too, because as much as I've tried to get the point across, my Dad still has guns stored above his garage, subject to temperature changes across four seasons -- and we're talking things like a 1920s vintage Model 11 that's rarely been fired, etc. sad

[ This Message was edited by: expatriate on 2004-03-07 22:46 ]

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Favorite bore rust preventative?

That's what I thought. It won't necessarily stick but you'll pay for it anyway.

Highly doubtful if your just putting drops down the barrel. Might make an interesting lubricant, but I doubt it has any anti-rust properties. Now some of the teflon blend carpets and such are probably great, but then the chemical process has probably been engineered so that the teflon is bound to the fabric.

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