Pellet Gun Lube

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  • Last Post 25 January 2019
Hoppy posted this 17 January 2019

This question is out there on the edge (maybe beyond the edge) of any cast bullet topic, but here goes. I've been doing some wintertime pellet gun shooting, and wanting to keep the bores from rusting in my damp basement, I looked at the pellet gun oils available from Crosman and Gamo. Turns out both of these products have stern warnings NOT to use them in the barrels of air guns--particularly in break-barrel guns. I sent messages to both of the companies, asking why the warning was there, and got the royal runaround (and some lies) in both cases. I also asked what kind of lube or preservative should be used in a pellet gun barrel, and I got no answers there as well.

So here's the question for my knowledgeable and well-informed colleagues of the CBA: (1) What is so dangerous or stupid about using ordinary preservative anti-rust oil in a pellet gun oil? (2) If using oil is such a bad idea, what kind of product should be used in pellet gun barrels?

Any and all assistance is welcome!

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Scearcy posted this 17 January 2019

I have similar questions. I am getting an old break barrel out of moth balls and it seems that some maintenance makes sense. I have been putting a few drops of Eds Red here and there but maybe shouldn't be.

Jim

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rmrix posted this 17 January 2019

This warning is for springer type rifles;  I have never used oil in the barrel or tried lube on the pellets because it is claimed the compression will cause ignition - diesel - in other words and causes damage to the rifle.

 

I don't know....? 

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tony1960 posted this 18 January 2019

Yes it certainly does ignite. Put your finger over the end of the barrel and discharge air, hot? I have had it demonstrated, but am unable to do it myself, a good friend cleaned her air pistol with petrol to get rid of any oil from a previous storage, fired a shot and there was a small (albeit quick) blue flame from the muzzle. I believe that the petroleum based products can also damage seals. But really, if it is completely clean and dry how much trouble can it be.

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 18 January 2019

There are new gun lubes that are water based, would they work? 

David Reiss - NRA Life Member & PSC Range Member Retired Police Firearms Instructor/Armorer
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M3 Mitch posted this 18 January 2019

I may be wrong here, but I think at least some air gun barrels are made from copper, so don't need any sort of corrosion protection?  As to the original question, why store the gats in the basement?  Bring them upstairs where the air will be drier.

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RicinYakima posted this 18 January 2019

I don't use anything on my bronze Sheridan Blue Streak. Nor on my steel ones either for the bores, there should be enough wax on the pellets to keep them conditioned for rust prevention. I use olive oil or synthetic motor oil for the mechanism. Or Crossman lube if I can find it cheap enough.  FWIW.

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David Reiss CBA Membership Director posted this 18 January 2019

I have only one pellet gun and have never felt a need to lube the bore. Ric is right about the waxing lube though, same situation with .22 rimfires. 

David Reiss - NRA Life Member & PSC Range Member Retired Police Firearms Instructor/Armorer
-Services: Wars Fought, Uprisings Quelled, Bars Emptied, Revolutions Started, Tigers Tamed, Assassinations Plotted, Women Seduced, Governments Run, Gun Appraisals, Lost Treasure Found.
- Also deal in: Land, Banjos, Nails, Firearms, Manure, Fly Swatters, Used Cars, Whisky, Racing Forms, Rare Antiquities, Lead, Used Keyboard Keys, Good Dogs, Pith Helmets & Zulu Headdresses. .

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RicinYakima posted this 18 January 2019

mrix, You are correct, springers fired generate a high heat and will ignite most oils. You have to research what system you are using to compress the air. EVERY system has different requirements.

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Hoppy posted this 18 January 2019

Thanks for the insights, guys--I had some suspicions that dieseling might be a culprit here, but I'd never actually experienced it. Actually, I had been using the pellet gun oil for cleaning the crud out, not so much for lubing the pellets (and pellet gun bores do accumulate some black stuff. But maybe I'm being too anal about cleaning it out. About other lubes (such as water-based): any specific recommendations?

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OU812 posted this 18 January 2019

Lots of videos on YouTube showing how to gain more velocity with Springer air rifle and diesiling. Yes they do it on purpose.

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Scearcy posted this 18 January 2019

The web sites I found confirmed the petroleum based lubes could damage the seals. They suggested Crossman lube also. White lithium grease for the barrel hinge.

Jim

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Ken T posted this 19 January 2019

Goo gone is commonly used to clean air gun barrels.Followed by a dry patch.

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rhbrink posted this 20 January 2019

I've always used Ballistol followed by a dry patch both for cleaning and as a preservative works for me out here in the humid Midwest at least I don't know of any problems yet and my main springer is 14 - 15 years old. I don't shoot it a lot mainly used to thump squirrels that like to chew on my cedar porch!

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Wineman posted this 20 January 2019

I was shooting my MAR 177 (AR Pellet Upper PCP) quite a bit and I thought I should clean it. Watched a couple of videos (different rifles) and got a 177 bore snake. I just used a light oil but then the gun started to malfunction. I sent it back to Crossman and they fixed it N/C. I have come around to the school that air and waxed pellets are fine on their own and do not need any removal assistance. Somewhere I read a story about a 22 LR found in the bush in Alaska. The rifle was a rusty mess, but the bore was perfect from years of bullet wax and no cleaning.

Dave

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Hoppy posted this 25 January 2019

Hey, Mitch: Good point about taking the guns out of the damp basement--which we do as a matter of course. I guess I was trying to emphasize the point about avoiding rust that might be caused by dampness, and I did it wrong. Also, I do have an old Benjamin single-shot pellet pistol that has what I think is a bronze barrel--these won't rust, of course, but they might develop a coating of verdigris--the same kind of corrosion that gets on brass-cased ammo that is left in a gunbelt too long. Thanks for your thoughts!

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Hoppy posted this 25 January 2019

I like the idea of using Ballistol for this application--it's a pretty good cleaner, and it is supposed to be kind to materials like rubber (like the seals and O-rings in a pellet gun), so it should be safe as far as the materials of the gun are concerned. As long as the barrel is thoroughly wiped dry before shooting (so that there is no "fuel" for dieseling), it should be OK. (Ballistol, like most other cleaners, does have a petroleum-based component, and it will burn very readily.) Some of those who responded to my original post have suggested that it's best to not clean and depend on a wax coating that might be on the pellets to prevent rust. I'm grateful for their contributions, but I don't think benign neglect is the way to keep guns in good condition. . . .

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