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zephyr
I've always been interested why shooters use various types of alcohols as degreasers, either before shooting, or to neutralize aggressive cleaning compounds before oiling and storing their weapons.
Here's what I think I know.....
Alcohol is a marginal degreaser, there are better products available.
Rubbing Alcohol is mostly water, I don't think I have any desire to put water in my barrels, especially my carbon steel barrels.
Alcohols such as denatured alcohol evaporates very quickly leaving condensation and once again water in the barrels.
Wouldn't a product like Mineral spirits be a better degreaser before shooting, a couple of wet patches than wiped dry before shooting, as well as using to "neutralize" any aggressive cleaner....
Leave me your thoughts....
Thanks....... Zephyr








tackrifle1
After I use copper cleaner I run a swab of alcohol down the barrel followed by clean patches. I then use oil until I go shoot again at which time I swap the oil out of the bore with clean patches.

An SF guy in my unit swore by hot water and soap (inside and out), let dry, and then oil. Is it right? Dont know but cut my cleaning time in the desert by 1/3 and never had a malfunction or rust. Also had about the cleanest weapons on return home.
Gunner5607
QUOTE (tackrifle1 @ Aug 27 2010, 21:08) *
After I use copper cleaner I run a swab of alcohol down the barrel followed by clean patches. I then use oil until I go shoot again at which time I swap the oil out of the bore with clean patches.

An SF guy in my unit swore by hot water and soap (inside and out), let dry, and then oil. Is it right? Dont know but cut my cleaning time in the desert by 1/3 and never had a malfunction or rust. Also had about the cleanest weapons on return home.



Ah, the old shower with your rifle. I understand! wink.gif
cmshoot
You do not use standard isopropyl alcohol that you buy in the pharmacy, as it is 70% alcohol and 30% water. Folks that use it are using 99% isopropyl alcohol.

Personally, I use denatured alcohol, comes in the metal cans at the hardware store.
Boanerges
During WWII hot soapy water followed by hot clear water was the standard mass field cleaning method. It's a good way and it works. If you can get you hands on the grade of alcohol that printers use to clean their printing press, you'll have gotten the best alcohol there is. There's nothing stronger.
citizen
I use Acetone. Easy to find (even wally world has it). Just keep it off anything you like such as bedding compound, or paint.
Acetone is the organic compound with the formula (CH3)2CO
E.Shell
Isopropyl alcohol is isopropyl alcohol (as opposed to "edible" grain alcohol like Everclear), and it's a standard chemical compound. The only difference at the consumer level is in the amount of adulterants, usually H2O.

No, it is not the "best" degreaser out there, but is very commonly available and relatively safe to use.

As posted above "rubbing alcohol" is typically 70% alcohol and the rest is water. This is because when alcohol is used of external medicinal purposes, a very strong concentration damages tissue, so it must be diluted to tolerable levels. We would not use this for our firearms stuff.

There is a slightly stronger concentration, the 91% alcohol sold in grocery and drug stores. It contains only 9% water. This is often recommended as a final wipe through the bore, and is relatively efficient for this undemanding and extremely limited use. The relatively small amount of water evaporates quickly.

Denatured alcohol is as close to pure as possible, and is marketed as "99%" alcohol, as posted by Shep above. This too works well for that final pass to remove *traces* of solvent left after dry patching. Because it is rather awkward to handle (usually sold in gallon tins) and is less easily acquired for most folks, it is seldom specified, but works fine.
cmshoot
I buy the denatured alcohol in the metal tins and put it in a flip-top bottle that I keep in my range box.
gunderwood
Don't forget that the directions for using it specify runing a dry patch or two through afterwards. Thus, even if you are using the 91%, the amoung of water that must evaporate is only 9% of what the dry pathes didn't get. Of course, we tend to either put oil down the bore or shoot it shortly there after, so rust isn't an issue.

QUOTE (E.Shell @ Aug 28 2010, 10:11) *
Isopropyl alcohol is isopropyl alcohol (as opposed to "edible" grain alcohol like Everclear), and it's a standard chemical compound. The only difference at the consumer level is in the amount of adulterants, usually H2O.

No, it is not the "best" degreaser out there, but is very commonly available and relatively safe to use.

As posted above "rubbing alcohol" is typically 70% alcohol and the rest is water. This is because when alcohol is used of external medicinal purposes, a very strong concentration damages tissue, so it must be diluted to tolerable levels. We would not use this for our firearms stuff.

There is a slightly stronger concentration, the 91% alcohol sold in grocery and drug stores. It contains only 9% water. This is often recommended as a final wipe through the bore, and is relatively efficient for this undemanding and extremely limited use. The relatively small amount of water evaporates quickly.

Denatured alcohol is as close to pure as possible, and is marketed as "99%" alcohol, as posted by Shep above. This too works well for that final pass to remove *traces* of solvent left after dry patching. Because it is rather awkward to handle (usually sold in gallon tins) and is less easily acquired for most folks, it is seldom specified, but works fine.
Dihedral
Denatured alcohol is ethyl alcohol with some methyl alcohol added so you can't drink it. Methyl alcohol dissolves steel. I would never use anything that dissolves steel in a barrel.
Flea
When speaking of using alcohol. We are talking about running a wet patch through the bore after using various solvents. Then if the rifle is going to be stored we use a light patch of oil down the bore. Before going to the range we run a patch of alcohol down the bore to remove the oil. Then it's off to the range to shoot. There's nothing wrong with 91% alcohol in a bore when it's only in there for a day or so at best.


Shoot well, flea
cuacctmaster
Ok so sort of on topic...what about diesel? I have not used it, but I have a buddy who swears by it. Just uses diesel and an air compressor...any thoughts on that?
Boanerges
QUOTE (cuacctmaster @ Sep 3 2010, 8:44) *
Ok so sort of on topic...what about diesel? I have not used it, but I have a buddy who swears by it. Just uses diesel and an air compressor...any thoughts on that?


Diesel is a less refined version of kerosine.
It's OK as a cleaning agent, but as a finishing and storing lubricant.... no way! In a damp climate, rust will form quickly.
Years ago, the manufacturers of EEZOX did an in depth study of all the major weapons cleaning products. They found that kerosine was the major part of the stuff being used in the cleaners, with additives being the minor part.
Flea
I've been cleaning rifles the same way for 33 years. Up until then I cleaned the Military way which my Grandfather taught me. Once a paid a visit to Clay Spencer (Spencer Custom Rifles) 52 World Record Setting rifles. I thought I knew how to clean a rifle. He ran his bore scope down my barrel and I learned real quick I didn't know how to clean a rifle.

Once he taught me I've used the same method ever since. The solvents have changed but the process is the same. I've used the bore scope to continue to make sure it's working and it is.

I quit trying everything under the sun and just use Montana Xtreme Copper Killer now. It cleans the powder fouling, carbon, and copper out of my rifle. Without having to use more than one solvent. Plus, it doesn't harm my bore. After cleaning rifles for 55 years I hate having to do anything extra. So this works and it's safe. Click to view attachment


Shoot well, flea
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