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Old 07-11-2017, 11:54 PM
belvedere belvedere is offline
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Default best way to protect SS barrel

My wife sometimes goes running after dark, and when she does, carries a 638 in a belly band. The end of the barrel can come in contact with her skin, and is starting to show a small amount of pitting/corrosion. What is the best thing to apply to protect it?
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Old 07-12-2017, 12:20 AM
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To the gun or her belly? Sorry, couldn't resist.
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Old 07-12-2017, 12:29 AM
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When my guns come into contact with sweat I wipe them down good with an oily rag. Then I put a bit of furniture wax on them.
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:03 AM
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I use renaissance wax on my guns.No idea that sweat would pit stainless.
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:24 AM
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"Stainless" should be labeled "stain resistant". Depending on the carry conditions, the individual sweat composition and maintenance it will rust and pit as much as carbon steel. Agree on regular oil or waxing for prevention.
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:25 AM
reddog81 reddog81 is offline
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I'd clean it afterwards. Any time the gun comes in contact with sweat it should be wiped down with some type of oil/cleaner. Basically anything will work - any gun oil, motor oil, mineral spirits, denatured alcohol, ATF, sewing machine oil, would all work just fine.

Even the best protective method will need to be cleaned and reapplied regularly under the conditions mentioned.
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:31 AM
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Many years ago a fellow shooter showed my his "maintenance" kit, it was a handkerchief sized piece of chammy leather into which he had rubbed in a quantity of Rig grease. It wasn't heavily greasy, but just enough to wipe off a handgun and leave a fine coating of protection on the gun. He had been a police firearms instructor and that's what he taught to his students.
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Old 07-13-2017, 10:56 AM
nachogrande nachogrande is offline
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Wink "IT'S STAINLESS AND IMPERVIOUS TO ANYTHING" RIGHT?

It's stain-LESS, not stain-impossible. Salt/sweat exposure would require some extra TLC. After the run a wipe down with a simple oil rag to a more fancy dry lube, ballistol, breakfree, etc. +1 for the car wax.
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Old 07-13-2017, 12:50 PM
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I can't fully endorse car wax. Most car waxes are cleaner/wax or wax cleaner. Or even wax/polish. The cleaners or polishers in car wax are abrasives. One can get pure waxes such as pure carnuba or some synthetics. Pure carnuba (white as snow) is difficult to obtain outside of Brazil. It can be had in the US, but it's hard to find and spendy. Plus it's rarely pure white. Even Renaissance wax is "wax polish". That implies there there are abrasives in the formula. The ramification of using these wax/cleaners or wax/polishes is that given enough applications, the gun's finish will wear away.

Of note, unfinished steels shipped in bulk are usually shipped with some sort of oil or grease applied. Carbon steel shipped "in the white" or unprotected is considered perishable. Less so with stainless steel. Typically, the higher the chromium content in stainless the stronger, higher rust resistance and brittle it is. Higher carbon content in the stainless results in strong steel with good rust resistance. The lower grade stainless steel that S&W (still a "good" steel) uses is a balance of ease of machineabiliy and rust resistance and other factors. It just isn't perfect. Given the right circumstances the stainless that S&W uses will rust. I believe a good light weight oil is called for in instances where rust is observed.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:04 PM
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Since Renaissance Wax is used by the finest museums to protect priceless wood artifacts, I seriously doubt it will do any harm to a firearm....
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:15 PM
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The finish on the Airweights alloy frame is also pathetic , a flood left two submerged in rainwater for a few days and the finishes started to corrode in places on both , this was just fresh water . Sweat is very corrosive , my sweat will make a blued gun rust in hours.
A wax job or treating the gun with Birchwood Casey Barricade might help but being vigilant about wiping the barrel and frame down after every run would be best . I keep Barracade and a rag handy and wipe them down after handling and/or carrying . Barricade isn't greasy and doesn't stain or rub off as easily as grease or oil .

Gary

Last edited by gwpercle; 07-13-2017 at 01:23 PM.
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Old 07-13-2017, 01:59 PM
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I have carry guns, fun guns, and hunting guns, some blued and some stainless. Not one has a speck of rust on it, despite being carried in my sweaty waistband or carried while hunting in numerous rainstorms, some after decades of use. My secret? Whenever I bring one home at the end of the day, I pull out the slightly oily rag I keep in a ziplock bag and give them a quick once over. Takes maybe 10 seconds, and the oil used has never really seemed to matter.
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Old 07-13-2017, 02:23 PM
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Storage in a silicon impregnated gun sock/sleeve/whatever you want to call it is useful, too. I will often put a gun I just handled back into its sock and then literally rub the gun with the sock. Gun socks have two great uses. One is to protect the finish of your gun; the other is they are way more useful for long term storage than a typical gun rug because they take up less space whilst they continue to protect the firearms.

One has to remember that sweat, fingerprints, similar body "exudates" are more than just water; there are chemical elements, salts and such, that are not good for gun finishes.

Last edited by ISCS Yoda; 07-13-2017 at 02:25 PM.
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Old 07-15-2017, 06:32 PM
belvedere belvedere is offline
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Thanks for all the replies!
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