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Thread: What do these dirty patches mean?

  1. #21
    Eggman's Avatar
    Eggman is offline Banned
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    I have I guess a somewhat different view of this cleaning patch phenomenon. Way way WAY back I was taught, or I formed the view, that part of the residue left over from black powder shooting is a salt compound. This is the highly corrosive residue that must be "got out." You do this with water,
    So you give the barrel a good soaking/scrubbing. This eliminates the salt thing. So what you've got now is some iron with some carbon residue, or lead residue, or whatever still on it. This stuff is what is showing up on your cleaning patch. This stuff without the salt is "so what?????"
    The iron still wants to rust. Put the new WD-40 gel on it - seal the metal off from the air. The gel will still be there three months from now - without any rust under it.

  2. #22
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    I ran a patch down the smoothbore today (day 3) and nothing came out but Ballistol residue, so that is nice.

    Right now my leading thought is flash rusting. Next time I shoot I'm going to try cleaning with cold water and see if it makes a difference.

    Steve
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  3. #23
    Muley Gil is offline
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    I clean with 50/50 Ballistol/water. When the bore is clean, I lube with Bore Butter. When I get ready to shoot, I run a dry patch down the barrel and then pop a few caps. No rust. I brush between relays at skirmishes, holding the musket upside down.
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  4. #24
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    So I cleaned my Armisport M1842 last week with cold water only.

    With the breech end submerged in my utility sink full of cold water, I scrubbed it with a soapy brass bristle brush, and then followed pumping action with a patch and also used my breech face scraper. The patch was clean in the water. This was my usual cleaning routine.

    Then I ran 2 patches down to dry the barrel.

    The 2 patches on the left are from drying:


    Then I ran a Ballistol patch down. That is the patch on the right above.

    Next I used a pure-copper Chore Boy scrubber over my cleaning rod jag with a patch between the jag and the copper mesh.

    I then ran another Ballistol patch down twice. This is what that patch looked like after scrubbing with the Chore Boy:



    So, I don't think the issue is heat-related.

    My ammo is an RCBS .678 round ball roughed up and double-dipped in Lee Alox.

    All I can think here is leading. I did not think that our velocities were high enough to get appreciable leading.

    I've got a couple of other muskets I don't shoot much hanging on the wall. I'm going to go clean their barrels the same way and see if I get similar dirty patches after "cleaning" the barrel.

    Steve
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  5. #25
    Don Dixon is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maillemaker View Post
    All I can think here is leading. I did not think that our velocities were high enough to get appreciable leading.
    Black powder ignites at 392 F (200 C) and burns at 801 F (427 C) according to GOEX's data sheets. Lead melts at 621 F (327 C). So, you are going to have some vaporization of the lead in the bullet from the heat of the burning powder. Some of he vaporized lead will deposit on the cooler surface of the barrel. Lead from vaporization and from primers is largely why one has a lead "dust" problem in indoor ranges. The higher teperatures of smokeless powder only makes it worse.

    Then you have the roughness of the barrel. Even the smoothest barrel will have tool marks which will catch lead from the passing bullet. The more roughness, pitting, or fouling that you have in the bore the worse the leading.

    A simple solution is to use greased paper cartridge wrappers as the British and Continental armies did. That materially reduces leading. But, the N-SSA quite stupidly won't let us use those original cartridge designs.

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  6. #26
    bobanderson is offline
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    "My ammo is an RCBS .678 round ball roughed up and double-dipped in Lee Alox."

    I stopped using alox 3 years ago. It seemed like it didn't help with accuracy and greatly added to the fouling. I rough my balls a specific number of "passes" between two Farrier's files and pass each ball down a 6" length of barrel as a gauge before I load it in the tube. I concluded that the fouling was the fault of the alox and the powder I used at the time, Goex 3f and then Swiss 3f. Once I switched to Goex Express, now Olde Eynsford, the fouling almost stopped completely. I remember my on first test, I fired 24 consecutive shots in my H&P without brushing or wiping.

    I've told this tale here in the past. Not sure if anyone really believed me but I've demonstrated it here in the NWT and I've got some converts.
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  7. #27
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    I'm using 70 grains 3F Goex.

    I can tell that fouling is an issue and you can feel a ring in the barrel where it hits.

    But, I get fantastic accuracy, so I can live with the fouling. Who knows when Goex products will be readily available again. Hopefully when I run out of what I have they will be back in action again and maybe they will sell Goex Express.

    Steve
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  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maillemaker View Post


    So, I don't think the issue is heat-related.

    My ammo is an RCBS .678 round ball roughed up and double-dipped in Lee Alox.

    All I can think here is leading. I did not think that our velocities were high enough to get appreciable leading.

    I've got a couple of other muskets I don't shoot much hanging on the wall. I'm going to go clean their barrels the same way and see if I get similar dirty patches after "cleaning" the barrel.

    Steve
    I have been using cold soapy water for cleaning lately (soap used is "Awesome" all-purpose cleaner) and haven't had an issue with flash rusting since. Plain water seems to work ok too. Only had flash rust issues when using HOT water, and also with the cleaner below.

    I received this stuff pictured free with an online order from Midway, i'm not necessarily recommending it! I cleaned two rifles and a smooth-bore with it and it seemed to work fine. Patches were clean on the rifled bores after a reasonable number of passes. Took a few extra on the SB. Went to lunch for about 30 minutes and came back to run Ballistol through them. All three had red rust on the patches, my error for letting them sit I guess. This was worse than the hot water flash rusting i've had in the past. Much faster, I think.

    It seems this "MZL" bore cleaner is alcohol based by the smell, so im guessing it evaporates quickly after stripping the crud out. Lesson learned here for me, oil immediately after drying no matter the method!

    Since this was your smooth bore, I'm curious what your results will be with cold water on rifled bores. It does look like some leading... could it be the Alox causing issues?

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  9. #29
    MR. GADGET's Avatar
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    I don't even clean my guns and never seen a patch that bad...... LOL.
    :grin:

    I will say this. I only use distilled water. No tap,.no well water.

    I have seen the metal,.iron and other minerals along with chemicals react and cause problems and rust in barrels.

    I do a mix of 50/50 Ballistol and distilled water. It works great.
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  10. #30
    hawkeye2 is offline
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    When I lived in Winchester I cleaned in a bucket of hot tap water and Dawn and got flash rusting and a discoloration on the polished exterior of the barrel which cleaned off with WD-40. Since I live here in the woods I still clean the same way except I use hot well water. No more flash rust or discoloration.

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