Special Interests - Groups & Societies > 1860 Henry

black powder cleanup for the 1860 and the 1866

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Montana Slim:

--- Quote from: Will Ketchum on April 18, 2010, 11:33:14 AM ---Personally I have had problems with Hydrogen peroxide.  It is an oxidizer and can cause nearly immediate rust if not oiled right away.  I once was using a mix with it and was interrupted by a family emergency by the time I got back, just a couple of hours I had rust growing out of my Henry.  Cleaned up fairly well but have never used it since.

I use some type of plug in the chamber (usually just a spent cartridge case) while cleaning the bore to keep the gunk out of the receiver area.  Montana Slim is the expert on cleaning BP guns.  I hope he joins in.

Will Ketchum

--- End quote ---

That about explains it..... briefly, here is what I do:

At the end of the day, I insert an empty case from the day's shooting. Then run 3-5 damp patches (I use windshield solvent) down the bore. I use a rod with  a muzzle protector and a .44 jag on the nd (44-40 rifles/carbines). The case captures most, if not all, of any liquid that would otherwise run into the action. You'll need to verify that your jag and patch thickness allows you to NOT stick your jag in the case....and/or you'll need to develop a "feel" for how far to run it down the bore. I've never had a big issue with this..maybe I'm just lucky. When the patches look reasonably clean, eject the case (carefully, in case it's retaining liquid)...then close the action and run a dry patch down the bore. Follow with your favorite lube. I use the lube patch to wipe the breech & bolt-face, too...done.
Takes longer to describe than to "do".

I used the same technique years ago when I shot a Rossi 1892, .38 spl & BP loads. Cleaning method worked well on it, too.

Regards,
Slim

Driftwood Johnson:

--- Quote ---Personally I have had problems with Hydrogen peroxide.  It is an oxidizer and can cause nearly immediate rust if not oiled right away.  I once was using a mix with it and was interrupted by a family emergency by the time I got back, just a couple of hours I had rust growing out of my Henry.  Cleaned up fairly well but have never used it since.
--- End quote ---

Howdy

I suspect something other than the Hydrogen Per Oxide caused your rust problem. Drugstore H2O2 is only about 3% H2O2, the rest is water. When you mix it up in equal parts with oil soap and alcohol, the concentration goes down to 1%. Hardly enough oxidizer to rust anything. As a test, a few years ago I took a piece of low carbon steel and painted it with Murphy's Mix, and let it sit in my basement until the Murphy's Mix completely evaporated. Took a couple of days. When the Mix had totally evaporated only an oily film was left. There was no rust. H2O2 gets a bad name because in highly concentrated form it can be used as rocket fuel. But the drugstore variety is pretty harmless.

As far as cleaning is concerned, I use the same method that Montana Slim does, with an empty case in the chamber to keep the gucky fouling out of the action. The only difference is I use the slotted end of my cleaning rod, to hold a patch, not a jag. The slotted end is narrow enough that I can run it all the way into an empty 44-40 case and it will not jam as a jag might. Makes it simpler, no need to carefully keep track of how deep I have gone.

Buck Stinson:
I use the same method as Grizzly Adams except for the Windex.  I use mild detergent in warm water.  I use white vinegar to clean BP cases.  If you turn the gun upside down in a gun cradle, with the action open and the lever pointing to the sky, you won't find in necessary to use the empty case in the chamber.

Montana Slim:
Well, I will add back in the "day" we didn't have easy chairs or gun cradles...least out in the field  ;D

The ups/down method works "ok" most of the time....been there & done that...anything less than complete attention will result in a splash to the innards or at least the carrier...which can run into the action or elsewhere once the piece is "righted".

"gun cleaning specialist" - I came by this title honestly...by making lots of mistakes :D


Jest funin' ya,
Slim

Buck Stinson:
When I started cleaning black powder out of Winchesters 45 years ago, I never thought about using an easy chair.  Learn something new everyday.   I agree that in the field on day shoots, the cradle isn't the most practical tool to carry along.  However, even 32 years ago, when we started shooting long range BP cartridge here in Montana, many of these shoots would last a full week and everyone took a cleaning cradle along as standard equipment.    We shot every type of vintage single shot rifle and big bore Winchester you could think of.  You don't have to clean BP rifles many times, before you find easier, cleaner ways to do it.  I also learned that when cleaning a lever action in the upside down position, you clean and wipe the bore first.  This way, it is impossible to get any liquid residue in the action once the gun is righted.  Then once the gun is righted, it's easy to clean out what little fowling is in the action.  If you have fairly tight headspace on any rifle, there should be very minimal cleaning necessary in the action.  JMHO

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