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Old 03-06-2011, 02:56 PM   #1
plstu
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Default What bore cleaner to use

I shoot lots of lead in my pistols, the corrosive ammo in my AKs, and copper in my 9mm and 30-06. Hoppes #9 cleans all of my guns but with LOTS of effort and time. Anyone recommend one solvent that will clean everything or solvents to use on each that works better then the Hoppes? The Hoppes works pretty good on my pistols and the lead but I bet there is better solvents to use. Have read good things about Bore-tech, butch's, and Montana but would rather hear it from some of you guys. Please include the name brand AND the formula.

Thanks!
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:36 PM   #2
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Bore Cleaners
Ed's Red
As a general bore cleaner, plastic wad remover, and carbon solvent the following formula, a creation of C.E Harris, and dubbed "Ed's Red" works quite well. In fact many folks claim it is better than anything they've tried. The original formula is:
1 part Dexron II, IIe or III Automatic Transmission Fluid - GM Spec D20265 or later
1 part K1 Kerosene
1 part Aliphatic Mineral Spirits federal spec TT-T-2981F (CAS# 64741-49-9) or Stodard Solvent/Varsol
(CAS#8052-41-1)
1 part Acetone (CAS#67-64-1)
Formula Addendum
It has been reported that methyethylketone/MEK (CAS#78-93-3) can be satisfactorily substituted for the acetone if desired.
It has been reported that Turpentine can be satisfactorily substituted for the Mineral Spirits if desired. The original Frankfort Arsenal formula upon which Ed's Red is based used turpentine rather than mineral spirits which were substituted for lower cost. Turpentine aslo tends to leave a gummy residue.
It has been reported that Kroil penetrating oil can be satisfactorily substituted for the kerosene if desired.
It has been reported that the lower numbered "JP" jet fuels can be used in place of kerosene.
It has been reported that Goo-Gone (a commercial citrus based solvent) can be satisfactorily substituted for the mineral spirits if desired.
It has been reported that commercial automotive "engine flush" can be substituted for the ATF (but you lose the red color).
For each gallon of Ed's Red produced you can also add 1 pound of anhydrous lanolin (CAS#8006-54-0), which helps to neutralize fingerprints but it's really not necessary. You can also leave out the acetone but then it doesn't remove plastic wad fouling as well. Store in airtight chemical-proof containers as the acetone, if used, will evaporate. Two sources for bulk anhydrous lanolin are http://www.selectoils.com/item--Lano...O-Lanolin.html and http://www.thesage.com/ .
According to Ed, "Ed's Red" will flow at -65oF and won't carbonize at 600oF. It has seen use by both the FBI and the Army Marksmanship Training Units.
MIXING INSTRUCTIONS
Mix outdoors, in good ventilation. Use a clean 1 gallon metal, or chemical-resistant, heavy gage NFPA approved plastic gasoline storage containers. Do NOT use light weight, thin, high density polyethelyne (HDPE), which is breathable, because the acetone will gradually evaporate. Don't use PVC containers as they will dissolve. A possible online source for metal 1 pint and 1 quart screw top metal containers suitable for storing Ed's Red is http://www.taxidermy.com . This site appears to be some sort of frames based design that does not allow you to link directly to containers, but you can find them via the following site links Products | Molding and Casting | Containers, Cups and Tools. The Blitz USA line of approved gasoline containers can be obtained at Auto Zone, Home Depot, Walmart, Target, and other retailers and are what I use. (www.blitzusa.com).
Add the ATF first. Use the empty container to measure the other components, so that it is thoroughly rinsed. If you incorporate the lanolin into the mixture, melt it in a hot water bath (lanolin melts at about 107 degrees F), or use a double boiler and avoid exposing to open flames. Pour the melted lanolin it into the larger container, rinsing the lanolin container with the bore cleaner mix, and stirring until it is all dissolved. (It will also, but slowly, dissolve in mineral spirits if you want to avoid using heat.)
You can divert a small quantity, up to 4 ounces per quart of the 50-50 ATF/kerosene mix for use as an "Ed's Red-compatible" gun oil. This can be done without impairing the effectiveness of the mix.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR USING
a) Insure that the firearm is unloaded and that all magazines are removed. Cleaning is most effective when done while the barrel is still warm to the touch from firing. Saturate a cotton patch with Ed's Red, wrap or impale on a jag and push it through the bore from breech to muzzle. The patch should be a snug fit. Let the first patch fall off and do not pull it back into the bore.
b) Wet a second patch, and similarly start it into the bore from the breech, this time scrubbing from the throat area forward in 4-5" strokes and gradually advancing until the patch emerges out the muzzle. Waiting approximately 1 minute to let the bore cleaner soak will improve its action.
c. For pitted, heavily carbon-fouled "rattle battle" guns, leaded revolvers or neglected bores a bronze brush wet with bore cleaner may be used to remove stubborn deposits. This is unnecessary for smooth, target-grade barrels in routine use.
d) Use a final wet patch pushed straight through the bore to flush out loosened residue dissolved by Ed's Red. Let the patch fall off the jag without pulling it back into the bore. If you are finished firing, leaving the bore wet will protect it from rust for up to 30 days. If the lanolin is incorporated into the mixture, it will protect the firearm from rust for up to two years.
e) Wipe spilled Ed's Red from exterior surfaces before storing the gun. While Ed's Red is harmless to blue and nickel finishes, the acetone it contains is harmful to most wood finishes and it could damage some plastics if left in prolonged contact.
f) Before firing again, push two dry patches through the bore and dry the chamber, using a patch wrapped around a suitably sized brush or jag. First shot point of impact usually will not be disturbed by Ed's Red if the bore is cleaned as described.
It has been reported that when Ed's Red is used exclusively and thoroughly, that hot water cleaning is unnecessary after use of Pyrodex or military chlorate primers. However, if bores are not wiped between shots and are heavily caked from black powder fouling, hot water cleaning is recommended first to break up heavy fouling deposits. Water cleaning should be followed by a thorough flush with Ed's Red to prevent after-rusting which could result from residual moisture. It is ALWAYS good practice to clean twice, two days apart, whenever using chlorate primed ammunition, just to make sure you get all the residue out.
Thanks to Jim Dodd for the above instructions
An unusual use for Ed's Red. Several correspondents report that an application of ER to an ant hill, especially fire ants, kills 'em dead.
Also, Ed's Red is very penetrative and makes a superior penetrating oil for loosening rusted parts.
Eds Red Plus
This variation on the Ed's Red formula gives it a copper removing ability similar to the commercial bore cleaner Marksman's Choice MC-7. You will need:
11 ounces of basic Ed's Red
2 ounces of 10%-20% industrial strength ammonia
2 ounces of Rustlick WS-11 cutting oil or suitable alternative
1 ounce of Murphy's Oil Soap
Mix the oil soap and ammonia in a separate container. In a suitable 1 pint container containing 11 ounces of Ed's Red, add the cutting oil and mix together. Then add the oil soap/ammonia mixture to Ed's Red/ cutting oil and shake the container to mix the ingredients. You will end up with a pink opaque liquid that for the most part remains in solution, but some components may settle out over an extended period. It is always best to shake well before using. The resulting solution will remove mild copper deposits in bores if allowed to work about 15-20 minutes.
Water soluble cutting oils and rust inhibitors can be obtained online from http://www1.mscdirect.com/cgi/nnsrhm or locally from your industrial supplier. NAPA auto stores carry a soluble oil listed as NAPA Soluble Cutting and Grinding Oil," part number 765-1525. Metal screw top containers can be obtained from http://www.taxidermy.com under | Products | Molding and Casting | Containers, Cups and Tools.
Thanks to Bill Mecca for this information.
You can link directly to that frame by putting this URL there http://www.taxidermy.com/cat/18/tool.html, but there's no link back to their home page from there.
Thanks to Patrick Larkin Jr. for this tip.
...And For Historical Reference--The Original Hoppes No. 9
The original "Eau de Gun." If you don't like this smell you ain't a real shooter! This formula came from Hatcher's Notebook and the amounts are rounded from the original formula to make 1 quart. Any resemblance to the current "environmentally correct" No. 9 is accidental.
Original component Notes
Ammonium oleate (CAS #544-60-5)aka
Oleic Acid CAS #112-80-1 5.0 oz (also known as ammonium soap) Could substitute lanolin but this would sacrifice its mild copper removal qualities
Amyl Acetate (CAS#544-60-5) 8.5 oz ("banana oil")
Nitro-benzene 2.0 oz (the racing fuel additive)
K1 Kerosene 8.5 oz
Neutral Saponifiable Oil 8 oz (Not identified, probably sperm oil, but ATF could be substituted
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:22 PM   #3
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For my shotgun I use Brownells Wad Solvent
http://www.brownells.com/.aspx/pid=1...UN_WAD_SOLVENT
For my handguns and rifles I use Sharp Shoot R Wipe Out
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewProduct...tNumber=784639
For really fouled up barrels you can start with Sharp Shoot R Accelerator
http://www.midwayusa.com/viewProduct...tNumber=461265
I still use hops to scrub down my rails and such but when its gone I might start using the Brownells stuff.
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:49 PM   #4
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Looking for liquid solvents. Thanks BKMe but I would rather just buy something that is already made. The AKs seem to take the longest to clean.....
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Old 03-06-2011, 11:05 PM   #5
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You can get the Ed's Red at brownells already made, I've never tried it but I hear a lot about it. The Wad Solvent was the only thing that would get the plastic out of my shotgun when it built up a little too much. The Sharp Shooter works great, they tell you to use it on a barrel that you think is clean and it will get it cleaner, I did this on one of my AR's and it got a lot more fouling out.
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Old 03-07-2011, 02:31 AM   #6
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As some folks here are aware, I occasionally put a large number of shots down range at the trap and skeet fields, often 500 to 1,000 in a day. Wad fouling can be a real problem, especially on a warm day, and/or with a lot of doubles fired.

Over the years I've found two ways to remove wad fouling easily.

You can soak the barrel from both ends with a 2-3 second spray of WD 40, kind of swirl the barrel around to make sure it runs down the entire length of the bore, coating it fully, then let it sit in the sun for 2-3 minutes, and then clean with your favorite bore cleaner.

The WD40 doesn't dissolve the wad fouling, it gets underneath it and lets you push it out more easily with your brush, and then with tight fitting patches.
The OTIS® gun cleaning system with its rubber ring that pushes the patch tightly against the bore walls is the most effective system I have ever found for this purpose.

The other method is to use MEK (Methyl Ethyl Ketone) or Acetone to dissolve the plastic fouling, by soaking a wool cleaning mop in either, then liberally soaking the inside of the bore with it.
Again, let it set, but this time only for a minute or so, you don't want the solvent to evaporate, just soften the fouling and lift it a bit so that your bore brush will remove it.

Quick note about wads and fouling. I've found that the factory wads in the Winchester AA loads will foul a bore faster that most other factory loads, particularly if the bore isn't real smooth.

The Federal factory wads are almost as quick to foul the bore for me.

Having the shotgun's bore polished to a high mirror finish (working up to a 20 micron grit) will help with this a great deal.

For reloading, using Claybuster wads, BP (Ballistic Products) wads or Remington wads seems to help, they appear to have a higher resistance to temperature and bore friction, I get quite a few more shots from those before having to remove the fouling than I do with reloads built with Winchester or Federal wads.

Just my .02 worth, your results may vary.
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Old 03-07-2011, 02:35 PM   #7
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Thanks for the reply but I do not shoot shotgun. Everything is rifle and wheel guns.
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Old 03-07-2011, 05:12 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plstu View Post
Thanks for the reply but I do not shoot shotgun. Everything is rifle and wheel guns.
WHAT!!!! HERESY!!! BLASPHEMY!! Plstu I'm shocked!

You're missing out on the third best thing in life, right after shooting rifles and handguns.

Becoming a good wing shot will improve your rifle and pistol shooting,enhance your sex life, lower your income taxes and stabilize your feng shui.

OK, so maybe those last three are a "bit" of a stretch, but learning to hit a moving aerial or ground target with a shotgun actually does help improve most folks rifle and pistol shooting, at least as far as shooting at moving targets goes, or shooting at stationary targets when you are moving.

If you ever decide you want to learn to shoot a shotgun, I would be happy to teach you.

Actually my post regarding the shotgun wad fouling (which I apologize for being off the original topic) was in response to Mdashoot's post just before it.

Shooter's Choice Lead Remover has always been my favorite for removing lead from my revolver barrels, and from the chambers as well if I have been shooting a lot of .38's in my .357's, or .44 Spl in my .44 Mags.

A Lewis Lead Remover Kit from Brownells can be very handy also, if the lead fouling is extreme.

But maybe I should be talking about what could be causing your leading problem, instead of how to clean it up.

Lowering the velocity of the slug, using gas checks, or increasing the hardness of the slug are the "normal" causes everyone generally cites for being the cause of leading in revolvers.

Those could/can be the cause, but in my experience are not all the causes that there are likely to be. There are other things that need to be looked at to solve a leading issue with a revolver as well before we decide that the load is at fault.

For example, having a bullet that is too small for the bore by 0.001 inch or more can lead to the propellant gas blowing past the projectile, melting the tail end of it and leaving behind lead smears in the bore.

If the throats of the individual (can be just one, or more, or all chambers) chambers are too large for the projectiles being used, you will also get blow by, the evidence of this will be found by looking at your barrel's forcing cone, to see if you have lead being deposited there.

And while we are talking about the forcing cone, it should be smooth, and centered (concentric) with the bore, for greatest possible accuracy and the least lead smear transfer. If its rough, or off centered, then you get more leading no matter how good a fit the projectile is to the chamber throat, or to the bore.

As far as bullet hardness goes, that's a real variable, based on the load recipe being used. The bullet needs to be hard enough not to smear just from the friction of passing down the bore (and the bore should not be rough by the way) BUT it also needs to be soft enough that it deforms (obturation is the fancy word for this) or "upsets" as the muzzle loading crowd says, enough that it fills the grooves and grips the lands as it is being driven down the bore.

If it does this, two things happen. Accuracy is increased, assuming that it obturates EVENLY and doesn't become "lopsided" for lack of a better term as it goes down the bore.

Secondly, if it fills the bore smoothly and symmetrically, it seals the bore so that none of the propellant gas escapes from behind it, over the length of the projectile, to melt it and let it smear lead down the bore.

So the higher the pressure and speed of the projectile, the harder it needs to be, the slower, and lower, the softer.

Most reloading manuals generally have recommendations on what hardness level to use with each load. The hardness is measured on the Brinell scale, and you can buy a tester for this for under $50 from Midway USA or Brownell's.

On the Brinell scale hardness for lead projectiles runs from a low of 5 for pure, or "dead soft" lead, to around 27-30 for really hard cast bullets.

Some reloading manuals also give a formula that lets you make a SWAG (Scientific Wild Assed Guess) as to what Brinell hardness bullet you should use with a given load.

You need to know the pressure rating of the load for starters, and this information is in the reloading manual as well.

Actually, there are two of these "approximation" formulas, neither is cast (pardon the pun) in stone, they are just guidelines. I don't know where they come up with the constants in the formulas, some day I will have to ask a buddy who worked for Spear for many year.

But if I had to guess, I suspect the one for the "maximum hardness level" comes from converting the pressure in Kilo grams per square millimeter (the Brinell scale is based on this) to the pounds per square inch we here in the USA are more familiar with.

I say that only because when I do the math here to convert the millimeters squared to square inches and the pressure in Kilo Grams to PSI I get 1,422, roughly.

There are 25.4 mm per inch, and 2.2046 Kilo grams per pound:

25.4mm x 25.4mm x 2.2046 =1,422.3197.

Where the constant for the perfect or ideal hardness comes from I haven't a clue.
Anyway, the formula for the "best" or most "ideal" level of Brinell hardness for a projectile is the pressure of the load divided by the constant 1,920.

For the maximum usable level of hardness, its again the pressure rating divided by a different constant, this time its 1,422.

The maximum hardness level would be the hardest slug that you could get to upset and seal the bore. The ideal hardness level would be one where it does to and completely fills the bore symmetrically.

On another note, did you know that the Brinell hardness of cast bullets will change as they age?
True statement.

Ones cast of a tin-lead alloy take about 3-4 weeks to stabilize, but over that time period, they will lose hardness, the loss varies based on the alloy being used. A 1:16 tin to lead alloy will lose about 2 Brinell hardness points over that time, a 1:10 tin to lead alloy will lose twice that in the same time period.

BUT, if you use antimony to harden the alloy instead of tin, over that same 3 week period, the bullets will GAIN approximately 6 Brinell hardness points as they age. They get harder over time!

BUT if you are one of those folks who cold quench your bullets as you cast (drop them out of the mold into a 5 gallon bucket of cold water for example) then the ones that you cast out of antimony and lead (like wheel weights, Linotype, etc.) will be just about twice as hard as they would be if you didn't cold quench them, AND they will lose 2-4 BHN (Brinell Hardness Number, or points if you prefer) over the first 6 months or so after they are cast, then they stabilize and stay put. Since they start out twice as hard, losing 2-4 BHN isn't really much of a concern.

All this info can also be found in a good casting manual, like the old Lyman "Cast Bullet Handbook", or "Bullet Casting For Beginners and Experts", etc. although I think the latter is now out of print.


OK, I've bored you enough for one day/subject. Hopefully you will be able to get the lead out, and then figure out how to keep it from coming back.

Good luck!
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Old 03-08-2011, 03:09 PM   #9
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and I was hoping NYECO was gonna say it would realign my "Chi" also... another bummer.
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Old 03-08-2011, 08:48 PM   #10
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Actually I have a strong shot gun shooting background from bird, duck, and close deer hunting in Maine. Since I have moved out here though, it has been all rifle and wheel guns. I did buy a nice skeet thrower a while back and now i am looking for an inexpensive 20 gauge single shot for my boy so I can teach him how to shoot clay pigeons. I have a nice 12 gauge Ithaca pump that I use. As soon as someone finds it in their heart to part with their old single shot 20 gauge, my boy and I will be into shooting clays!
My wheel guns clean pretty easy and i don't get a lot of lead build up. What is taking all the tme is the darn AKs. I bought some ammonia based solvent from NFA yesterday and I am going to try that.

Thanks
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