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S&W-Smithing Maintenance, Repair, and Enhancement of Smith & Wesson and Other Firearms.


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Old 09-28-2020, 03:11 PM
Pondoro Pondoro is offline
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OK, I have read to never use steel wool or sandpaper on a blued gun that develops rust spots. Copper is considered OK. Is this true? (The gun is not my gun, a local youth organization owns it. They are required to clean the guns with alcohol between shooters during COVID). Are Scotch Brite copper pads the right medium?

Please do not slam the youth organization. They tried to oil the guns, they knew alcohol was a bad idea. They missed a spot. Not teaching the kids to shoot is a worse idea, and the rules are the rules. We simply need to get this gun restored as much as possible without further damage.
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Old 09-28-2020, 04:41 PM
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The alcohol, of course, is removing any protective oil. So, probably a good idea to do a follow-up wipe down with Rem-Oil or some other protective oil after the alcohol.
It won't negate the virus policy.
Club guns are always subject to these sort of issues, so don't feel too bad or that you have anything to apologize for.

You're on the right track, though. People will advocate Scotch brite pads, bronze wool, an old fashioned copper penny, etc. used in conjunction with a good penetrating gun oil. Kroil is a great choice.
It will probably clean up better than you might expect!

Jim
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Old 09-28-2020, 07:00 PM
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#0000 steel wool and oil can be Carefully used , don't scrub down to bare steel ... lightly rub just untill active surface rust is removed .
Copper 0000 wool is safer , but harder to get .
After the De-Covid alcohol wipe , let dry and then spray the guns surfaces with RemOil or any general purpose gun oil , clp or lube on hand ... spray lubes wont carry any germs the sterile guns will still be safe . Just wiping them down with an oily rag would work too but it might not be acceptible to the powers in charge of the Covid rules .
Some Covid regulations seem to be based on un common sense and twisted logic . Hang in there we shall over come this too .
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Old 09-28-2020, 09:23 PM
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I usually applied a liberal coat of Kroil or CLP Breakfree and gave it a couple of days to penetrate and soften the rust, then applied more and "scrubbed" the area with a brass toothbrush.

If you use a coin, make sure it's not a newer one, those are not made of real copper and will scratch guns.
I keep hearing people recommend a "Big 45 Frontier" pad to remove rust without damaging the surface....

Big 45 Frontier Metal Cleaner | Remove Rust from Gun Bluing and Clean Dirty Gun Bores Easy!
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Old 09-28-2020, 09:47 PM
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As mentioned, Big 45 is great stuff! Well worth the like $6 for 3 pads.
Anything you use, you can't use too much oil!
A lot of what's packaged as brass or bronze wool is just plated steel. Always check it with a magnet before using it on a gun. If non-magnetic, it works well and is very gentle.

If you have to scrape an area (after soaked with something like Kroil), use the lip of a spent brass cartridge case or a pre-1983 U.S. penny.
Any copper or brass marks can easily be removed and won't go through the blue.

Yes, soak any rust for a few days. Use the least aggressive tools first.

Flitz polish if used sparingly and gently can bring the shine back.
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Old 09-29-2020, 07:08 AM
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For light, surface rust, a soaking in something like Kroil, WD-40, or automatic transmission fluid is good for getting into the pores of the metal and displacing the moisture. Once soaked, gently polish the metal with bronze wool, a pure copper Chore Boy pad could also be used, but be gentle. Once the rust is removed, thoroughly oil. Rem Oil is actually an excellent rust preventive oil.


In the future, thoroughly oil the metal after each range session. Alcohol is pretty darned good at stripping away oil. It can also take the oils out of a wooden gun stock.
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Old 09-29-2020, 08:48 AM
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You can order bronze wool from Brownells and several other places. I never used steel wool unless I know I'll be following up with cold blue. Someone mentioned a penny, I've also used a nickel on rust spots. It will scrape off rust, but no harm the blued finish.
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Old 09-29-2020, 09:12 AM
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I found Four-Ought Bronze wool at my local Lowe’s... that’s about as gentle as it gets. That reminds me, I’ve got some Fall gun cleaning to do so they’ll make it through the Winter.

Froggie
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Old 09-29-2020, 09:12 AM
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I understand the concern and practice of Alcohol wiping of the guns due to Covid. That said, it is imperative that the guns we wiped down immediately afterwards with a 100% cotton flannel rag containing a good amount of your favorite Gun Oil! I'd keep a bunch of oil treated Rags in a safe place so it becomes an easy "second nature" task to do for the kids.

!00% Copper or Bronze very fine wool and gun oil will remove the rust - but unfortunately leave some of he staining from the rust.

Unfortunately, Alcohol won't help the wood stocks either - so that will have to be cared for as well. Maybe some Bee's wax treatment.
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