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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  The Darksider's Den (Moderator: Cuts Crooked)  |  Topic: I give up -- Gonna have to clean guns DURING match 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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Author Topic: I give up -- Gonna have to clean guns DURING match  (Read 3592 times)
August
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« on: February 06, 2012, 10:05:12 am »


Well, after two years of February Foul Outs, I surrender.   I'm going to have to clean my rifle and pistols during a match. 

I didn't want to do this and wanted to believe it wasn't necessary with proper preparations.  But, yesterday with temps in the 60s and relative humidity in the teens, the rifle developed the nastiest fouling I've seen in over five years of shooting black powder.  The last ten inches of the rifle barrel was a combination of hard fouling and lead that was as solid and slick as any interstate hiway surface.

There is something about our weather in February that the gunz don't like.  Fouled out of a big match on the last stage last year in February and yesterday on the last stage bullets started going everywhere except where the rifle was pointed.  The rifle in question is a .38 special loaded to the top with 2F and topped with a 158 Snakebite, Biglube bullet.  This set up gets me through six stage matches regularly during every other time of the year.  So, I believe I've done all I can in the preparation department.

So, today, I got up bright and early and dragged the bore-snake through the rifle.  No effect on the hard fouling at the end of the tube.  Several pulls later with the bore snake, several wet patches with the rod, and a few passes with the brush, and there is still fouling in the end of the rifle barrel.  Clearly, I pushed things past the point of no return.  I give up.  I'm going to have to clean gunz during a match, which is something I really, really, really didn't want to have to do.

So, my dear colleagues, what is the least obtrusive, fastest, and best routine for keeping gunz running in February during a match?

Do I want to put a case in the chamber and run a rod down the barrel every other stage?  Do I want to try to find a place to lay the gun while pulling a bore-snake through the barrel after every other stage? 

What's the best way to deal with keeping the gunz running?   (I really don't like using the bore snake because it is hard to pull, doesn't do a great job, and requires finding a place to use it -- which is dang near impossible at a big match).

Save me !
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« Reply #1 on: February 06, 2012, 10:19:14 am »

Howdy August,

I NEVER have to clean my guns during a match.  Accuracy and function never fall off.  Here's my secret. . .

I'm shooting genuine black powder under Big LubeLLC bullets.  These bullets haul so much lube that the fouling stays WET and blows out with the following shot.  Your second and your last shot encounter the same amount of fouling.  In other words, your guns run with SECOND SHOT accuracy and function regardless of how many times you fire them.  I frequently shoot annual SASS matches which can run as much as Four days without cleaning until I get back home.

Let me know if any of this helps.

DD-MDA
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« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2012, 10:24:42 am »

Perhaps not what you want to hear but I think you should get a good black powder sub, APP or 777, but not Pyrodex, to use during those periods causing the problems.  Pyrodex does not work the same as the other two subs, which are self lubricating, and would probably clean themselves from shot to shot.  I have no experience with 777 but understand that it works the same as APP just more powerful.  I have not found what I consider to be a redeeming feature yet for Pyrodex, other than some fokes claim it is the only smoky powder available in some areas?  I do not understand that situation, but??
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« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2012, 10:25:42 am »

Howdy August, first I would try some 3f Schuetzen with the 38, burns much cleaner than 2f or Goex. Only load enough to give an 1/8'' compression when seating the bullet. I can shoot 12 stages without any problem. Make lube a little softer, add more Crisco. Squirt a little Ballistol down the bore every few stages. If you still need to pull a wet patch every now and then get the Otis cable breech to muzzel system, much easier than anything else. Good Luck Smiley
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« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2012, 12:03:59 pm »

Sounds to me like your lube is not functioning properly.
What you are describing is what I saw with my guns shooting with crayon lubed bullets.  the smokeless lubes lasted in  my rifle about 16" and then went to the crusty fouling you are talking about.
Try some SPG, DDs Pearl Lube or Pearl Lube II or any of the old formulas. 50/50 bees wax and vegetable shortening wold work better than what you describe.
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« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2012, 12:53:44 pm »

Here in the Desert Southwest we do a barrel wipe every other stage. For my 73/44-40 I just keep a cleaning rod with a nylon brush and patch on the cart , give the patch a shot of Simple green & water mixture and do a one swipe sweep.

When we have shooters come from other parts of the country they always have fouling issues, till they adjust to the climate change.

I shoot APP in my Rifle and Revolvers, BP in my SG. Sometime's I use BP in the Rifle, and I do the barrel wipe.
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« Reply #6 on: February 06, 2012, 02:45:27 pm »

Ho August...
You say yer pill  of choice is a snakebite Big Lube, I should have thought that it would hold enough lube to keep you runnin real sweet, What does your Lube mix consist of??

Paladin (Whats kinda nosey intrigued  Wink ) UK
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« Reply #7 on: February 06, 2012, 02:54:03 pm »

Are you also maybe running smokeless rounds through that rifle at other times?

I have seen some shooters who had not cleaned their rfiles completely after shooting smokeless have horrible issues after mixing residues of smokeless lwith BP rounds...

I shoot 38spl with 158 big lube snakebites over 1.00 cc of 2f or 3f and have used Scheutzen, Goex and Diamond Back.  Scheutzen burns cleanest in my experience but I have never had those fouling issues...

PR
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« Reply #8 on: February 06, 2012, 05:03:57 pm »

Howdy

Back when I was pan lubing smokeless bullets with 50/50 Crisco/Beeswax, they did carry enough lube to keep my rifle bore completely free of fouling. I would get a bit of hard caking towards the muzzle. I always have a cleaning rod in my cart anyway, and a small bottle of Murphy's Mix. A quick swab down the bore a couple of times with a bronze bore brush dipped in the M Mix always did the trick for me. I don't think I put an empty in the chamber, I think I just did a quick couple of swabs, probably followed by a dry patch to mop up the moisture. I used to do it about half way through a match. No big deal, it only took about three minutes.

Your mileage may vary.
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« Reply #9 on: February 06, 2012, 06:25:38 pm »

Before I switched to 777 I would do a "pull through" between stages or at least every other stage because the last 4-6" of my 20" barrel got fouled if I didnt. I used a 158gr RN (Lyman 358311 I think), with SPG or other BP lube I made up (BW & olive oil). I found if I put two discs of beeswax (brood core sheeting or hobby/craft shop rolled candle wax pressed onto the powder charged cases) under the bullet I could shoot all day long without the pull throughs BUT(!) the groups at 50yds opened up from 1.5-2" to 5-6" patterns. Back then the targets were often much farther out so I declared the accuracy unacceptable and went to a variety of subs such as Black Canyon, Black Mag 3, CleanShot, ClearShot, and finally 777. All the subs shot accurately with minimal fouling. 777 meters through my loader, shoots clean and accurately so I never went back. I use BP in the revolvers and the shotgun though. The pull throughs with a moose milk (Ballistol/water mix) worked fine but I got tired of the swab splatting onto my shirt sleeves and the soiling would not come out in the wash.
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« Reply #10 on: February 06, 2012, 07:17:15 pm »

I would also have to suspect the lube mixture.  I regularly shoot two days (12 stages) with no problems.  The rifling is still sharp and clear after 12 stages and I clean the rifle with no more than 4 or 5 patches and a pass with the bore snake.
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« Reply #11 on: February 06, 2012, 10:08:47 pm »

When I bought my 44-40 Uberti '66 rifle from a guy he had been using Moly coated bullets and smokeless. For the next  6 months I would get some hard fouling near the end of the barrel arund teh 4th stage. After I shot it about 10 times this stopped happening. I blame teh moly and the smokeless loads he was using. Been working fine the last 5 years with BP. According to some guys with way more BP experience than me, when the temp and humidity level drops past a certain point no amount of lube will help with fouling and you will have to swab the barrel. I live in California so neither happens arond here.
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« Reply #12 on: February 06, 2012, 10:10:13 pm »

Pards,
Something you may have overlooked .....August reported "humidity in the teens".  That is a real problem with b.p. fouling!

Many of us shoot b.p. in 40+% humidity without any issues using "Big Lube" bullets. Single shot B.P. shooters who blow tube /clean their barrels after each shot have reported very hard fouling when humidity has dropped into the teens as compared to humidity in the 30% range.

I have had correspondence with a fellow who shoots NRA Cowboy Silhouette in Texas that has told me that he has experienced  hard fouling with the 38 Snakebite bullet, SPG and Goex powder when the humidity drops into the teens. He did not want to switch to a sub so started using SWISS which produces a minute amount of moisture when fired due to the creosote in the charcoal.  He told me that made a big difference in fouling control. He was able to shoot many more shots accurately.

Springfield Slim,
Well said! " When the humidity level drops past a certain point no amount of lube will help with fouling and you will have to swab the barrel."    I will add that switching to a powder that produces a bit of moisture when burned will certainly help.

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« Reply #13 on: February 07, 2012, 12:18:02 pm »

Fortunately I live in an area with high humidity so I won't have to buy more expensive powders to keep shooting. Being the cheap SOB that I am I would just do the extra work and swab or blow tube if I had to.
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« Reply #14 on: February 07, 2012, 12:40:49 pm »

The only time I've experienced fouling buildup in my 44-40 '66 Carbine has been in low humidity conditions (4th of July in Cheyenne).  I shoot Goex or Grafs with 200 grain Big Lube bullet and some nice soft BP lube.  Need to run a couple patched through the bore after 5 stages at HOW when humidity was in teens.  Also had to relube the arbors on my Navies.
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« Reply #15 on: February 07, 2012, 03:01:38 pm »

  Need to run a couple patched through the bore after 5 stages at HOW when humidity was in teens.  Also had to relube the arbors on my Navies.

Gee! That sounds like an excessive amount of effort jist ta shoot BP! Wink
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« Reply #16 on: February 07, 2012, 04:47:24 pm »

Gee! That sounds like an excessive amount of effort jist ta shoot BP! Wink

Well Cuts, sometimes sacrifices must be made  Grin
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« Reply #17 on: February 07, 2012, 05:50:42 pm »

I'd switch to Swiss powder for February. Super clean burning stuff. Other wise a quick wipe with a patch and jag takes less than 30 seconds...leave it wet and sloppy for best results.
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« Reply #18 on: February 07, 2012, 10:55:45 pm »

You could sacrifice a little powder space for either a lube cookie or homemade lubed wonder wad under the bullet.  In AZ humidity <10 did not encounter fouling shooting Bear Creek Moly Coted (I know Moly and BP are not supposed to mix, but sometimes ya shoot what ya got) Over 1.9 cc of FFg Schuetzen
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« Reply #19 on: February 08, 2012, 06:16:10 am »

Go with Swiss as has been suggested, it's a whole new ball game, totaly worth the extra cost and since it's hotter than goex you use a little less.  I melt the lube out of the biglube bullets and panlube my own, it just seems to work better.  I mainly shoot vintage winchesters where the bores are not always the best so keeping fouling soft and minimal is very important, Swiss turned everything around for me and made it very enjoyable.  And it's still real BP.

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« Reply #20 on: February 09, 2012, 12:00:04 am »

1860: If you are going to melt the lube out why don't you just buy them unlubed, it would more than likely be cheaper.
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« Reply #21 on: February 09, 2012, 07:32:54 am »

Slim,

Next time I will-the original lube probably dried out a little, I bought quite a few and don't shoot Cowboy matches so they are lasting quite awhile.  I still have some 45s that are pre-styrofoam tray era...LOL...I don't shoot 45-Bp all that much...Great bullets from a great pard...I'll be intouch..

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« Reply #22 on: February 10, 2012, 02:08:16 pm »

Those 45's must be over 6 years old. I only didn't use the trays for a month before I gave up on the loose bulk shipping. How old are the 38's, the lube is a different formula now.
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« Reply #23 on: February 15, 2012, 11:00:13 am »

Thanks for all the help you guys offered in this tread.

I followed Jefro's advice and purchased an Otis cleaning cable.  They have a "starter" set for 15 bucks and that worked out just fine.  Boy, howdy, they are sure proud of the full kits!!

I used the Otis cable after every stage, or two when posse chores piled up.  It worked flawlessly.  It was simple, fast, and safe to use.  I didn't have to move the gun from the cart to operate it and it took less than a minute to carry out the whole operation.

Thanks especially to those who have experienced the "February Foul Out" and took the time to report it here.

I did use some fresh bullets from Slim this weekend and they seemed to perform better than the brand I used for the match that started this whole conversation.  But, in spite of the new bullets, I still opted to clean the gun rather than risk the match.  Got the first place award to prove the concept.

Thanks everyone for all your help and support.
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« Reply #24 on: February 16, 2012, 02:51:41 pm »

Hmmmm, interesting threads.   I just started to convert over to Black Powder. OK, not quite there with the real holy black as a buddy of mine gave me 1/2 dozen cans of pryodex. What can I say, free powder is free powder.  BUT I have had a lot of success with it.  My rifle is a uberti 73, 24 inch barrel, 45 colt.  I started out using Lymans 250 grain cowboy bullet (452-664) but with spg, (It does have a large than normal lube grove, though not quite as big as DD)  and 32 grains of pryodex, WLP pistol primer.  One thing I make sure of is a day or two before the match, I pretty much scrub out the barrel. Yeah Yeah, I've been know to "over clean" my firearms. (Gunny Sgt Camp, my DI years ago would be proud)  Its a Marine thing. Then I run a couple of patches saturated with bore butter and let it sit overnight. Then run a clean patch thru it.  My brass is RP and I've annealed the mouths with an annealing maching I got years ago when I was shooting NRA High Power.   I've made it through about 150 to 160 rounds with no problems.  Before I started annealing, I'd get all kinds of blow by into the action that I's have to stop and do a quick cleaning about the 4 or 5 th stage.  Not any more.

I do have DD ROA mold also (the new on too)  I use that primarily for my pistol loads in my vaqueros and my ROA.  Its about 210 grains.  I havnt tried it in the rifle.  I have a preference for a longer heavier bullet in the rifle.

The key to my world is bullet lube, lots of it, and barrel prep
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