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Thread: Cleaning exterior of rifle barrel

  1. #1
    Member Anythingalaska's Avatar
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    Default Cleaning exterior of rifle barrel

    I just got a Stainless .270 WSM Tikka recently that was brand new; only bore sighted. The previous owner bought it, and then never used it. Have hunted with this rifle several times now and love it, it's a tack driver. That's beside the point.

    After gaining ownership of this rifle, I noticed it had a couple rust spots on the end of the barrel. This is my first stainless rifle, my other rifle is Teflon coated so this finish is new to me. Is there any solvent or method to remove this rust spots and restore the barrel finish? They aren't overly large and don't bother me too much, but if there was an easy fix, I would do it.

    Other than that, I went on an extremely brushy/wet/dirty hike last weekend and the exterior of the barrel has a little bit of dried dirt and I guess you could say streaks/blemishes from rubbing against bushes/branches, etc. Again not a big deal, and I can kind of rub/scrape it off with a rag without too much work. However if there is a type of solvent that could be used to easily wipe down/clean the exterior before oiling maybe that would be a better choice. I have read that using solvent like Hoppes on the outside of rifles is not a good idea for whatever reason.? Or maybe I should just rub it down and then just oil it. Maybe I am over thinking this. Anyways, any advice would be appreciated.

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    Member hodgeman's Avatar
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    You can take minor surface rust off with a bit of 000 steel wool.

    For cleaning the outside a rag with a little WD40 works good...WD40 is a lousy oil, but a pretty good mild solvent for dirt and so forth.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    Might try Goo Gone first for the natural stuck on crud.Then a thorough rubbing with CLP on a patch.

    At a minimum, CLP will retard any further surface rusting.

    PS: did you check the bore for any junk inside?

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    Member Anythingalaska's Avatar
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    I cleaned the bore out, it was fine and just hard normal fouling from firing. The outside just got a little dirty from the hunt I went on.

  5. #5

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    I can usually remove light rust stains from stainless using one of those green plastic scrubbing pads from the kitchen along with a little WD. If that doesn't work, I really like JB paste (yeah, the bore scrubber) on a toothbrush. Rust has to be awfully bad before I need to resort to steel wool. You can always see the spot where you used the steel wool, but the JB removes the rust without marring the finish.

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    Quote Originally Posted by hodgeman View Post
    You can take minor surface rust off with a bit of 000 steel wool.

    For cleaning the outside a rag with a little WD40 works good...WD40 is a lousy oil, but a pretty good mild solvent for dirt and so forth.

    I bought a used Remington 700 SS .300WSM in January, and had to use the steel wool and WD40 to clean it. I found some light surface rust that I took the steel wool to as well, and got it off around the action area once I pulled the stock. Whoever owned the gun must have smoked heavily, as it was coated in a smoke looking film. I have also used the 000 Steel wool and WD40 on blued rifles as well to remove rust and never hurt the bluing. One other thing, FLitz works great for this as well.

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    I like to use Flitz- works great on removing minor rust and scratches. I use it on stainless guns and all of my knives if they need it and have been happy with results.

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    After rubbing a stainless exterior with steelwool and wd40 does anything other than oil need to be applied to it?

    I've had hoopes #9 all over the exterior of guns am never notice any ill effects.


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    Default CLP?

    Quote Originally Posted by 7STW View Post
    Might try Goo Gone first for the natural stuck on crud.Then a thorough rubbing with CLP on a patch.

    At a minimum, CLP will retard any further surface rusting.

    PS: did you check the bore for any junk inside?
    what is it?

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    Member 1Cor15:19's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by limon32 View Post
    After rubbing a stainless exterior with steelwool and wd40 does anything other than oil need to be applied to it?

    I've had hoopes #9 all over the exterior of guns am never notice any ill effects.


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    There are much better metal preservatives than "gun" oil. In fact, I've not found a single use where "gun" oil is the best choice.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1Cor15:19 View Post
    There are much better metal preservatives than "gun" oil. In fact, I've not found a single use where "gun" oil is the best choice.
    What do you recommend?


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    frog lube clp www.froglube.com
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    I've been using TC 1000, the ML bullet and patch lube.

    I got the Idee from onna EKC's posts.

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    Member 1Cor15:19's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by limon32 View Post
    What do you recommend?


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    Can't top ATF for a rust preventative on a firearm in the field.
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1Cor15:19 View Post
    Can't top ATF for a rust preventative on a firearm in the field.
    Awesome, thanks!


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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    I never use steel wool on stainless. Steel wool is high carbon soft steel, and particles of it can impregnate/contaminate the surface of stainless and promote rusting. The better choice for scrubbing stainless is bronze wool.

    +1 to ATF as a good all around inside and out gun lube.
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    Member Doug in Alaska's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKBEE View Post
    I like to use Flitz- works great on removing minor rust and scratches. I use it on stainless guns and all of my knives if they need it and have been happy with results.
    Same here, this stuff is great. It takes a little elbow grease really, really works well.
    Someday someone may kill you with your own gun, but they should have to beat you to death with it because it is empty.

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    I never use steel wool on stainless. Steel wool is high carbon soft steel, and particles of it can impregnate/contaminate the surface of stainless and promote rusting. The better choice for scrubbing stainless is bronze wool.
    I agree, but there's also stainless steel wool in all courseness grades. It's fine and dandy for use on stainless.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BrownBear View Post
    I agree, but there's also stainless steel wool in all courseness grades. It's fine and dandy for use on stainless.
    Stainless steel wool is actually what I have used the last couple of times and its fine. After I wipe it down with the steel wool, I use a cloth to make sure all is removed and then reapply a small amount of gun oil with my hopes gun cloth.

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    Didn't we pin the post from Rancid Crabtree? Turtle Wax Chrome Polish work well on stainless.

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