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Thread: Revolver lead fouling

  1. #1
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    Default Revolver lead fouling

    No doubt this is at least the 1,000th time the question has been asked, but what do you use to clean up the lead residue/deposits from a revolver (or any firearm I guess).
    I've got a Ruger SP101 22 that I was cleaning last night. I noticed on the rear of the barrel, and the frame area in front of the cylinder, that there appeard to be quite a bit of build up. I started digging and found lots of lead packed in that area around the barrel. I picked at it with a sharp point carefully, and got most of it. A bronze brush with Hoppe's 9 seemed to help a bit.
    What do you guys use for chemicals and/or tools to remove lead deposits like that?
    thx,
    ARR

  2. #2
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    Copper Chore Boy wrapped around your brush along with some elbow grease.

  3. #3

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    Sounds like the revolver is out of time or the forcing cone needs some work.

  4. #4

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    For areas outside the bore, mechanical picking is hard to beat. Ports at the muzzle can be bad, just like the forcing cone and barrel face. For bore cleaning, I haven't found anything, chemical or mechanical, that works as well as a Lewis Lead Remover. For light leading one quick pass does it. For the heaviest lead, it might take 3 or 4 passes. Takes me longer to find mine in a drawer than it does to clean a bore.

  5. #5
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    Leading is not allowed. I shoot for a year without cleaning and get no leading.
    When you blow lead from the gap your boolits are too soft and are slumping however with a .22 it is caused by out of line chambers and you are needing to get the gun timed. There should NEVER be lead on the frame or back of the barrel.
    I would call Ruger. You have a gun issue, not a leading issue.

  6. #6
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    Default Oh, did not know about timing

    Thanks for that info on the timing. Do I need to leave the gun fouled, or leaded to have it repaired/fixed/timed or just tell them what the issue is? And does the gun have to go to Ruger, or can it be fixed by a gunsmith?
    As the gun is stainless, I felt it ok to pick at it with a tool. The lead was thick enough that it flaked off as I carefully worked at it.
    After I got the majority, I used the brass brush on it. That seemed to help, but there is a small space between the top of the barrel and bottom of the top of the frame where the brush does not work.
    How much lead residue will be seen in the cylinder? As the cylinder is slightly larger than the bore, do you use a larger brush? If so, for a .22, what is your suggestion?

  7. #7
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    Here's the way I do it, and\or determine if I've got it.

    I discovered this method by accident, and I hope I can explain it to where it makes sense.

    The times I've had leading in a revolver, I couldn't see it in the barrel but I FOUND IT, anyway.

    After I clean the barrel in the usual manner, solvent, brush, solvent etc.

    I push a clean patch through the barrel from the muzzle, and stop when the patch, and jag, is just out of the other end enough to be very tight when I pull it backwards.

    It sorta wrinkles the patch, which is what makes the patch tight, and won't come out,

    BUT I get a good grip on the gun, and the cleaning rod, and pull it back anyway. If there's leading, I can see it on the patch. I keep on keepin on, until the patches come out without streaks of lead on them.

    Smitty of the North
    Walk Slow, and Drink a Lotta Water.
    Has it ever occurred to you, that Nothing ever occurs to God? Adrien Rodgers.
    You can't out-give God.

  8. #8
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    Clean the gun super good, get everything out and off it. Then use a strong flashlight to look down the bore, you might need to light at the side of the cylinder but find a spot that you can see the chamber throats. You should not see any edge of the throats through the barrel. Cock the gun to every chamber and look at each.
    Timing can be done several ways from working with a new wider cylinder latch to offsetting the hole in the frame and opening it in the other direction. A problem is when the top and bottom are off, nothing can be done.
    Another cause when throats are aligned OK is a forcing cone not cut right and that is an easy fix.
    Once you find the problem, call Ruger and explain it. They will send a pre-paid box if you ask so you can return it. Make sure you put what is wrong in a letter in the box with the gun.
    A .22 is the hardest caliber to make straight in a revolver, there is just no room for error.

  9. #9

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    I just reread this thread and see that I missed a detail. It's a 22. I agree that there should be zero leading if things are right with the gun. Over the years I've seen three different 22 revolvers with leading problems (1 each, Smith, Ruger and Colt). All of them shared a common flaw. They slipped out of the factory with no forcing cone. Ship it to Ruger and let them sort it out.

  10. #10

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    Then use a strong flashlight to look down the bore, you might need to light at the side of the cylinder but find a spot that you can see the chamber throats.
    To make this easier take some small pieces of aluminun foil, roll into a ball that till fit into the back of the chambers, then use the light to illuminate from the bore, the foil will really brighten things up and helps see any misalignment by casting a shadow on the bore if the cylinder chamber face is out of align with the bore.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmckenney View Post
    To make this easier take some small pieces of aluminun foil, roll into a ball that till fit into the back of the chambers, then use the light to illuminate from the bore, the foil will really brighten things up and helps see any misalignment by casting a shadow on the bore if the cylinder chamber face is out of align with the bore.
    That is a great idea. I'll try that with and old JP Sauer and Sohn 22 Revolver I have. It has what I suspect to be timing issues.

  12. #12
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    Default Curious

    Will Ruger fix this problem free, or is there a charge? I'll call Ruger too, but thought maybe some of you had dealt with them in the past.

  13. #13

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    I would contact Ruger, describe the problem and include a picture or two if you can. My experience with Ruger, Smith and Colt is they will do what it takes to fix the problem or replace the firearm if necessary. They will send you a prepaid box/label for shipping the firearm to them if they will fix it, then return the firearm to your door.

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