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/Brownster/Blk Dynamite
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My sr9c and CZ sp01 barrels both have light copper fouling lining the rifling which looks like this: http://i1223.photobucket.com/albums/dd502/njdivertony/IMG_1445.jpg
Is it a big deal at all? I've read it can cause higher pressure in the chamber and also electrolysis. Would you all recommend as periodic copper solvent cleaning {TOS Violation} or just leaving it until the copper becomes more noticeable? Thanks.
 

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When my SR9 started to look like that I got some Pro Shot Copper Solvent Iv and it worked really well, no bad smell, no Ammonia and cleans up with water.

Got my barrel the cleanest I have ever seen it.
 

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I would give them periodic cleaning the longer you go with out the longer it will take to clean.
 

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Hoppes no 9 benchrest or just plain no 9....brush it through and swab it out...its therapuetic plus it smells great ...its a great way to relax after a days shooting whilst nailing a beer.
 

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/Brownster/Blk Dynamite
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Discussion Starter #6
Yep I'm cleaning after each outing. I Use hoppes elite gun cleaner with patches then a copper brush about 6 times through.
 

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Also, I am sure this goes with out saying but it's probably a little better to use a nylon brush with a copper solvent.

I have a whole separate cleaning kit with nylon brushes that I use when cleaning out copper fouling.
 

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Wow what ammo are you using? I got Sweet 7.62 copper solvent after getting my second rifle. I cleaned my SR9 and I have almost no fouling after 4000 rounds
 

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Yep I'm cleaning after each outing. I Use hoppes elite gun cleaner with patches then a copper brush about 6 times through.
Use the brush first then patches, sounds like you might be cleaning backwards and leaving stuff in your barrel from the brush?
 

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Brewster, The copper looking fouling you are seeing is from "gilding metal", which is a copper and zinc alloy used for the jackets on bullets. For the most part, it is pretty harmless; however, if you store your guns in a humid climate, it could result in bore pitting. What happens is moisture from the air mixes with powder residue and acts as an electrolyte, which starts a process called "galvanic action". This is a process much like electroplating where the steel in the bore actually transfers to the particles of the gilding metal, leaving microscopic pits in the bore. In extreme cases where the bore was not cleaned and humidity is very high, pitting can be severe enough to cause permanent bore damage.

Normal cleaning with a good powder solvent such as Hoppie's #9 will remove the powder residue, which is an essential ingredient for the electrolyte. Without powder residue, it reduces the chance for galvanic action to start .... unless there is a high humidity level. Powder solvent does not remove gilding metal ... it just disguises it until the solvent dries. The best product for removing gilding metal is Sweet's 7.62. It contains ammonia, which will totally dissolve brass, bronze, copper, and zinc with a few applications.

Here's the process ... soak a patch (very wet) with Sweet's 7.62 and mop the bore. Let the gun sit for several minutes to allow the product to start working. Apply more Sweet's to the bore then use a nylon bore brush to scrub the bore. Again, let the gun sit for several minutes then use a clean cloth patch and swab the bore. The patch will turn blue from the presence of gilding metal. Repeat the process until the swabbing patch no longer comes out blue. This normally takes two or three applications, depending on how much gilding metal has accumulated. Bronze or brass bore brushes will react with the product and give you a "false positive", turning the swabbing patch blue and will also eat the brush.

Once you have removed the jacket fouling (patches no longer come out blue) the bore will be very clean but it is totally unprotected for rust. Follow up and mop the bore with a patch soaked with gun oil. In this condition, guns can be stored for many years without fear of bore pitting or rusting.

If you shoot the gun frequently and clean the bore with powder solvent after each shooting session, there's really no need to remove jacket fouling except for pride. However if you put the gun in storage for more than a few weeks, it's best to take extra precautions and remove the jacket fouling.

Jacket fouling has a desirable property ... it tends to fill in striation marks in the bore that were a result of the manufacturing process. Striation marks in the bore (scratches, rough spots, etc) act like a file and remove some of the jacket each time a round is fired until they are filled in, which typically takes three or four rounds. Because striation marks actually file away some of the jacket, accuracy will not be as good for the first few shots from a foul free bore. After the bore is "conditioned" by firing three or four "fouling shots", accuracy will be optimum. Bench rest shooters and even some hunters fire several fouling shots before competing or hunting to get the best accuracy possible.

If you have a stainless steel barrel, there's really no need to remove jacket fouling because stainless does not react with gilding metal, even with a dirty bore. That said, I still run Sweet's 7.62 through my stainless bores before putting them in storage just as an additional precaution.
 

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Good info thanks Iowegan. Good to know.
I use Hoppes 9 after every firing and sometimes clean and oil the little rascles just to relax.
 

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/Brownster/Blk Dynamite
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Discussion Starter #14
Use the brush first then patches, sounds like you might be cleaning backwards and leaving stuff in your barrel from the brush?
What I do is run patches first then the brush then patches again. I'll be running the brush first now. Thanks Shootist.
 

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/Brownster/Blk Dynamite
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Discussion Starter #15
Brewster, The copper looking fouling you are seeing is from "gilding metal", which is a copper and zinc alloy used for the jackets on bullets. For the most part, it is pretty harmless; however, if you store your guns in a humid climate, it could result in bore pitting. What happens is moisture from the air mixes with powder residue and acts as an electrolyte, which starts a process called "galvanic action". This is a process much like electroplating where the steel in the bore actually transfers to the particles of the gilding metal, leaving microscopic pits in the bore. In extreme cases where the bore was not cleaned and humidity is very high, pitting can be severe enough to cause permanent bore damage.

Normal cleaning with a good powder solvent such as Hoppie's #9 will remove the powder residue, which is an essential ingredient for the electrolyte. Without powder residue, it reduces the chance for galvanic action to start .... unless there is a high humidity level. Powder solvent does not remove gilding metal ... it just disguises it until the solvent dries. The best product for removing gilding metal is Sweet's 7.62. It contains ammonia, which will totally dissolve brass, bronze, copper, and zinc with a few applications.

Here's the process ... soak a patch (very wet) with Sweet's 7.62 and mop the bore. Let the gun sit for several minutes to allow the product to start working. Apply more Sweet's to the bore then use a nylon bore brush to scrub the bore. Again, let the gun sit for several minutes then use a clean cloth patch and swab the bore. The patch will turn blue from the presence of gilding metal. Repeat the process until the swabbing patch no longer comes out blue. This normally takes two or three applications, depending on how much gilding metal has accumulated. Bronze or brass bore brushes will react with the product and give you a "false positive", turning the swabbing patch blue and will also eat the brush.

Once you have removed the jacket fouling (patches no longer come out blue) the bore will be very clean but it is totally unprotected for rust. Follow up and mop the bore with a patch soaked with gun oil. In this condition, guns can be stored for many years without fear of bore pitting or rusting.

If you shoot the gun frequently and clean the bore with powder solvent after each shooting session, there's really no need to remove jacket fouling except for pride. However if you put the gun in storage for more than a few weeks, it's best to take extra precautions and remove the jacket fouling.

Jacket fouling has a desirable property ... it tends to fill in striation marks in the bore that were a result of the manufacturing process. Striation marks in the bore (scratches, rough spots, etc) act like a file and remove some of the jacket each time a round is fired until they are filled in, which typically takes three or four rounds. Because striation marks actually file away some of the jacket, accuracy will not be as good for the first few shots from a foul free bore. After the bore is "conditioned" by firing three or four "fouling shots", accuracy will be optimum. Bench rest shooters and even some hunters fire several fouling shots before competing or hunting to get the best accuracy possible.

If you have a stainless steel barrel, there's really no need to remove jacket fouling because stainless does not react with gilding metal, even with a dirty bore. That said, I still run Sweet's 7.62 through my stainless bores before putting them in storage just as an additional precaution.
Excellent info Iowegan. What you've said should be made into its own gun maintenance thread and made a sticky. Cool I'll run with your expertise. Thank you.
 

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BRL, You can Google "galvanic action" for all the scientific information but without going into full detail ... here's what happens when 2 dissimilar metals come into contact and an electrolyte is present:

Basically, the two metals form a small battery where current flows from one to the other. When current flows, the metal that is the most cathodic (negative charge) will transfer ions to the metal that is the most anodic (positive charge). In gun bores, this means ions from the barrel transfer to the gilding metal and because ions leave the barrel metal, it leaves a small pit.

Each metal has a "galvanic number" related to how negative or positive they are. Conditions where metals that "don't play well together" would be a metal with a high negative number mated with a metal that has a high positive number. There are galvanic charts that show these in detail. Turns out, stainless steel is close to the middle of the chart (neutral) where it tends to get along quite well with most other metals. It can be slightly anodic with some metals and slightly cathodic with others. Gilding metal has very similar anode properties to stainless steel so there is minimal ion transfer. With conventional steel, there is a notable difference where steel has a higher negative number than gilding metal so when moisture mixes with powder residue, an electrolyte is formed that will allow steel ions to transfer or "plate" on the gilding metal, thus forming pits in the steel bore.

Sorry, probably more information than you needed.
 

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I use Butches bore shine...it contains less amonia than sweets...I use sweets when the bore is really fouled and I want to make quick work of it...

I alway make sure to dry the cleaning solvents from the bore with a dry patch and follow it up with a light coating of light oil or preservative such as breakfree.

Amoina also eats the copper in the brush bristles...One can have a clean bore and still get blue/green residue on their patches from the amonia in bore solvents eating the brush bristles...I usually switch to a nylon brush for the last few cleaning passes. When a patch comes out clean after using the nylon brush (i.e) no green or blue on it, the bore is clean and ready for oil.
 
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