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12/6/2019 7:27:02 PM
Posted: 6/1/2008 9:38:15 PM EST
I just got a can of Ballistol. I cleaned my AR and my Ruger 10/22 with it. It seems like a good cleaner but I don't know if it's a good lubricant. I still lubed my AR with BF CLP after I cleaned it with Ballistol. I'm looking for a good cleaner. I usually use WD40 for cleaning and then I lubricate with BF CLP. I don't want to use a degreaser type of cleaner every time I clean my guns. WD40 is cheap and it's not a bad cleaner but it stinks bad. Ballistol doesn't smell as bad but it's expensive.
Any advise or opinions on this subject?
Thanks.

Link Posted: 6/1/2008 9:51:34 PM EST
Get some Slip 2000 725 cleaner. It is 100% non-toxic and cleans carbon really well. Then rince with isopropal alcohol ( just drys everything fast) then reoil.
Link Posted: 6/2/2008 3:17:19 AM EST
Too many better cleaning and lube products out there other than Ballistol. That said, Ballistol does work well on wooden stocks as a wipe oil from time to time to keep from drying out. The fart smell just seems to fit right in with a bolt gun.
Link Posted: 6/2/2008 3:41:14 AM EST

Originally Posted By scottrh2:
Too many better cleaning and lube products out there other than Ballistol. That said, Ballistol does work well on wooden stocks as a wipe oil from time to time to keep from drying out. The fart smell just seems to fit right in with a bolt gun.


Link Posted: 6/2/2008 5:41:22 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/2/2008 12:52:40 PM EST by husker_t]

Originally Posted By Mihail:
I just got a can of Ballistol. I cleaned my AR and my Ruger 10/22 with it. It seems like a good cleaner but I don't know if it's a good lubricant. I still lubed my AR with BF CLP after I cleaned it with Ballistol. I'm looking for a good cleaner. I usually use WD40 for cleaning and then I lubricate with BF CLP. I don't want to use a degreaser type of cleaner every time I clean my guns. WD40 is cheap and it's not a bad cleaner but it stinks bad. Ballistol doesn't smell as bad but it's expensive.
Any advise or opinions on this subject?
Thanks.



Ballistol is a fine lubricant and is one of the longest-running continuous lube products in the market, for a good reason. Companies such as H&K have recommended Ballistol by name to use in caring for their firearms (see p. 34 of this HK UMP user's manual, for instance: www.louiscandell.com/pdf/hk/ump_man.pdf .) There's a reason for that, and it's because the stuff works! Just so you know, compared to other modern gun lubes though, Ballistol is actually one of the LEAST expensive per ounce, if you buy in bulk. Be prepared for sticker shock, if you go to something like Breakfree, Weapon Shield, CorrosionX, or Mpro-7 CLP.

IMHO, there are a few modern gun oils (just named) that are probably a bit better as LUBRICANTS than Ballistol. The main reason for this is, Ballistol while being a GREAT lube does not have quite the same range of operating temperatures before it gels up in cold, or breaks down (under high heat, for instance) compared to modern synthetic oils. That is the main reason that I chose to quit using it, though I'll still say that it would make a great lube for most average uses, I just wanted the best I could get. However, many people want an all-purpose, single CLP-like product, and Ballistol is still a decent lube, while also handling the cleaning and rust protection functions better than MOST other CLPs I have used. On balance, if I were going to use only 1 product, I'd probably use Ballistol exclusively. The only reason I don't use it alone is that I getter better results by using a couple of products in combination, such as Mpro-7 (a cleaner) and CorrisionX (lube and protection). If you want to use just one product, I think Ballistol is fine.

The comment about smell, though funny, is up to each individual user. The smell comes from a particular plant seed, and it smells a bit like anice. Actually many users say they like the smell, just as you'll find some that like Eezox and some hate it, some like Hoppes #9, and some hate it.

[Updated]
Sorry, tried to find that old Ballistol rust protection test online, but I guess it was previously online at the www.ctmuzzleloaders.com site, and today at least, that site appears to be offline. It was a great test as it had pics and everything of the rust test results. If that test does not come back online, here is another test that shows Ballistol being up there among the best at providing corrosion protection, after 7 days of salt water exposure (lower numbers are better (www.accuratereloading.com/rustest.html).
Link Posted: 6/2/2008 9:58:27 PM EST
Thanks for the advise.
Link Posted: 6/3/2008 12:22:24 PM EST
Use Ballistol for anything that does not have a chrome bore and that I would like to shoot under 1.498 MOA (left over from Bench rest days where we never put anything with Teflon down the bore ... don't know if it matters or not, however, better safe than sorry ;-).

For everything else that is not black powder or requires a light grease (aka M1/M14) I use a combination of CLP for over all lube and the discontinued Break Free 20mm auto cannon lube for the higher pressure / contact points.

For emergency cleaning in the field use either a Spray can of Break Free CLP possible following pre-cleaning with brake cleaner (shooting NFA a lot of they guys run until the gun stops, which for an Uzi is over a half dozen cases of ammo ;-).

Link Posted: 6/4/2008 12:19:30 PM EST
BTW, I got some more distinctive information on the smell of Ballistol. The distinctive smell comes from Anethole. I've given you a link, but Anethole is a compound from a plant that gives you a licorice or anice type of smell.

I've heard Ballistol's smell described variously as "old sweat socks", "farts" (in this thread--that was a first, but I was LMAO!), and also "licorice", "fennel", etc. The funny thing is, almost everyone who uses it regularly gets used to it and then starts to like it, sort of like old Hoppes #9 that so many of us who grew up around guns are used to.

I've actually gotten to like the smell (don't know if that suggest I'm crazy, but oh well :-)), it somehow kind of reminds me of a medicine-type of smell, and in fact, Ballistol gets used for medicinal purposes in Europe, so it fits right in. People use it for all kinds of crazy things (see here), and you'll find it's a pretty useful substance around the home and not just a gun oil. What I use it mostly for are:

- guns
- leather boots, belts, shoes, ball gloves. acts as both a cleaner and water proofing
- wood polish
- metal cleaner and protectant (for example, I coated my gun safe with it)
- good at cleaning metal wheels (removing brake dust)
- just about anything else that mineral oil is good at



Link Posted: 6/4/2008 12:40:43 PM EST
I've used Ballistol for nearly 50 years.... just say 'n.
Link Posted: 6/4/2008 12:43:04 PM EST
Link Posted: 6/4/2008 1:03:22 PM EST

Originally Posted By JTinIN:
Use Ballistol for anything that does not have a chrome bore and that I would like to shoot under 1.498 MOA (left over from Bench rest days where we never put anything with Teflon down the bore ... don't know if it matters or not, however, better safe than sorry ;-).

For everything else that is not black powder or requires a light grease (aka M1/M14) I use a combination of CLP for over all lube and the discontinued Break Free 20mm auto cannon lube for the higher pressure / contact points.

For emergency cleaning in the field use either a Spray can of Break Free CLP possible following pre-cleaning with brake cleaner (shooting NFA a lot of they guys run until the gun stops, which for an Uzi is over a half dozen cases of ammo ;-).



Why not use it on chrome bores?

I haven't read any precautions about ballistol harming hard chrome.

BSW
Link Posted: 6/4/2008 5:27:32 PM EST

Originally Posted By HeavyMetal:
Good stuff but bruns off too easy in an AR.


Can you give an example? When did you last use it, and what makes you think that it "burns off"? Not disagreeing with you, just that i haven't observed it in my AR's. Ballistol is actually a more slippery, "goopy" type of lube than some of the popular gun oils on the market, so it's just not intuitive to me that it "burns off."
Link Posted: 6/4/2008 5:27:54 PM EST
I went overseas for six years. The Army had my firarms locked in my safe and placed in long term storage in Norfolk VA. Before storage I washed them down heavily with Ballistol and sealed them all in VCI bags with tape. The movers were there and it was pouring rain and damp when I sealed them. When I unwrapped them there was not a spec of rust and the Ballistol was still wet, not gummed up. Maybe the VCI bags stopped the rust but i think the Ballistol helped a lot.
Link Posted: 6/4/2008 6:12:42 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/4/2008 6:14:00 PM EST by HeavyMetal]
Link Posted: 6/4/2008 6:26:25 PM EST

Originally Posted By briansmithwins:

Originally Posted By JTinIN:
Use Ballistol for anything that does not have a chrome bore and that I would like to shoot under 1.498 MOA (left over from Bench rest days where we never put anything with Teflon down the bore ... don't know if it matters or not, however, better safe than sorry ;-). ... <snip>


Why not use it on chrome bores?
I haven't read any precautions about ballistol harming hard chrome.
BSW


It is not that I am worried about Ballistol harming chrome bores, it is that CLP is sufficient (if even that in the short term) protection for the chrome bores. Since I get CLP by the gallon, use that where ever possible.

Link Posted: 6/4/2008 10:09:18 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/4/2008 10:33:04 PM EST by Blankwaffe98]

Originally Posted By HeavyMetal:

Originally Posted By husker_t:

Originally Posted By HeavyMetal:
Good stuff but bruns off too easy in an AR.


Can you give an example? When did you last use it, and what makes you think that it "burns off"? Not disagreeing with you, just that i haven't observed it in my AR's. Ballistol is actually a more slippery, "goopy" type of lube than some of the popular gun oils on the market, so it's just not intuitive to me that it "burns off."


Is does not persist well inside the bolt carrier. It simply does not stand up well in this high tem area.

Modern lubes like Weapons Shield eclipse it in this regard.

I have tested just about everything and the hardest area for a lube to persist is the gas expansion chamber inside an AR bolt carrier.

It works well in other apps but extreme presure and temps combined are not it's forte'.


+1 That was pretty much my findings as well.
Now dont get me wrong I freakin love the Ballistol oil and use it all the time..I mainly use it on all my Mil-surps and BP guns due to its performance characteristics in those areas.I use the Ballistol on every part including the stocks and leather.Certainly shines up my old K98K's.
I also use it for all my automotive and household needs as I replaced WD40 and liquid wrech in favor of it.
Now I would have absolutely no problem,and have,using the Ballistol on the AR or any other auto loader.The stuff works great in all areas of concern,but does tend to go away under high temps in the long term.But hey so does Break Free CLP.Not a real issue though as its easy to squirt some in the places getting dry.
That being said I only use the liquid Ballistol.The aerosols put way too thin of a layer oil to suit me and are expensive.I basically hate aerosol anything.
The thing with Ballistol is that once its applied and allowed to sit for a few minutes the alcohol evaporates and creates a light vaseline like film that is extremely slick and very long lasting in storage.So yeah I'd have to say its an outstanding lube overall.Excellent protectant as well especially considering it has the ability to neutralize acids.A gift from the oil gods for anyone who has acidic skin like myself.
As for the smell,I actually like it...but hey as strange as it might seem I like the smell of BP too..The longer Ballistol sits the better/sweeter it smells too.
Like Ive said before its the grandfather(long history) of all CLP's but still performs better than most.
Price...Midway has it for around $9.00 per pint and have it on sale cheaper than that every other month or so.Thats a cheap price for a quality CLP IMHO.

edit to add:

www.klever-ballistol.de/
Link Posted: 6/4/2008 10:21:49 PM EST

Originally Posted By JTinIN:
Use Ballistol for anything that does not have a chrome bore and that I would like to shoot under 1.498 MOA (left over from Bench rest days where we never put anything with Teflon down the bore ... don't know if it matters or not, however, better safe than sorry ;-).

For everything else that is not black powder or requires a light grease (aka M1/M14) I use a combination of CLP for over all lube and the discontinued Break Free 20mm auto cannon lube for the higher pressure / contact points.

For emergency cleaning in the field use either a Spray can of Break Free CLP possible following pre-cleaning with brake cleaner (shooting NFA a lot of they guys run until the gun stops, which for an Uzi is over a half dozen cases of ammo ;-).



Ballistol does not contain PTFE or any other type of friction modifiers.
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 5:55:24 AM EST
Thanks for the great info guys. I'll be buying a pint of Ballistol soon. I don't mind the smell.To me WD40 smells worse. I have to clean my guns inside so the ventilation is not so good. Ballistol smells different but the smell is not as strong as petroleum based cleaners and it's not as toxic.

Does Ballistol neutralize corrosive ammo salts?
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 6:12:00 AM EST
Yes, Ballistol neutralizes salts in corrosive ammunition. I do not use this type of ammo myself, but have read repeatedly that Ballistol works for this. For example, this guy says so:

Ballistol and corrosive salts

Another thing to note about the smell, if you are one of those who don't like it: after open contact with the air, within a few minutes the smell is gone. So when you wipe it on your weapons or tools, the smell does not stay around once it's out of the bottle.
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 7:02:43 AM EST
I use water/Ballistol mix (about 5:1) to clean my AK after shooting corrosive ammo. If I hit all the areas exposed to gas wash I don't have any problems with rusting. I clean everything at the range with the Ballistol emulsion, followed by straight Ballistol. The next day I go back over the rifle and reapply Ballistol. Any rust spots get hit with water/Ballistol mix. After week or so I recheck the rifle to make sure there isn't any corrosion slowly developing . One of the nice things about using Ballistol is as long as I have straight Ballistol I can make more corrosive ammo solvent by adding water.

The AKs run fine using Ballistol as a lube, as have the pistols I've tried it on. It leaves a waxy film once the alcohol evaporates off. I would say the film is about as durable as CLP, not as tenacious as LSA.

Ballistol has an odor to it, but it smells more like old time 'snake oil' medicine then like gun cleaning supplies. At any rate my wife likes the way it smells, it reminds here of some horse medicine they used to use.

BSW
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 8:42:32 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/5/2008 8:43:37 AM EST by husker_t]
For anyone interested in buying Ballistol in bulk, the best prices I've found consistently are at Wisementrading.com.

16 oz can: $8.00 (50 cents/oz)

1 gallon can: $49.95 (39 cents/oz)

5 gallon can: $170.00 (27 cents/oz)


Crunch some numbers on comparable gun solutions out there, whether BF CLP or whatever, and figure out the "per ounce" cost. You'll be amazed at how much more cost-effective Ballistol is than most of them. For instance, take the new "wonder products" like Weapon Shield, and even buying in bulk you tend to pay $1.50 to $2.00 an ounce. I don't buy Ballistol because it's the cheapest, I get it because it works. But the low bulk cost is a nice bonus!
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 9:07:48 AM EST
Good thread on a Great product ...
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 9:42:06 AM EST
Aaaahhh........fart in a can.......
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 10:00:59 AM EST
The thing that is interesting to me about this product is that it will emulsify with water. Oil (it's primary ingredient) won't do that (readily). I found an MSDS that shows Potassium salts of fatty acids. I wonder if this is the reason for the emulsification but I also wonder if these will hydrolyze (turn to water) in the presence of water. I have heard of the possibility before.

Thunderkiss, are you listening??
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 11:11:23 AM EST

Originally Posted By Mihail:
Thanks for the great info guys. I'll be buying a pint of Ballistol soon. I don't mind the smell.To me WD40 smells worse. I have to clean my guns inside so the ventilation is not so good. Ballistol smells different but the smell is not as strong as petroleum based cleaners and it's not as toxic.

Does Ballistol neutralize corrosive ammo salts?


Yeap it does infact have the ability to neutralize the salts from corrosive powders and primers,acidic finger prints etc..
I started using it years ago just for that purpose in the mil-surps as I shoot alot of surplus ammo from the 30's,40's and 50's.
The Ballistol is pure majic on the black powder guns.
In fact on the muskets the only way I clean them is to plug the cone.Squirt some Ballistol in the barrel and fill half way with warm water.Plug the muzzle and agitate.Pour out and repeat until I see clean Ballistol/water come out of the bore..Uncork the cone and dry patch which forces most of the mix from the breech out the cone...which also removes fouling from the cone with pressure..Then finish cleaning with pure Ballistol.Takes me about 5 minutes to field clean a musket using that method.I have yet to see any corrosion and have had comments on how clean my muskets are at reenactments during safety ispection from park rangers and officers.
For a corrosive ammo cleaner mix I like to use the Ballistol and water mixed at 50/50.I was told by Dr.Zettler at Klever-Ballistol all that is needed is a 10% Ballistol to 90% water.I personally think the 50/50 work best overall.
Ive got a small article that I wrote a few years ago on the subject over on the K98K page if you need more info.
HTH
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 11:47:21 AM EST
[Last Edit: 6/5/2008 11:55:12 AM EST by Blankwaffe98]

Originally Posted By Tempest45:
I found an MSDS that shows Potassium salts of fatty acids.


Tempest,
I believe that is where Ballistol gets its pH from.Mixed with water it has a pH of about 8.5-9.0 per Dr.Zettler at Klever.
Dr.Zettler retired a couple years ago or I'd ask him.I think I will write his son who is the CEO and see if he can explain further.
From what Ive been told the reason for the emulsification is the alcohol.I do know that once the Ballistol has been applied and the volatiles evaporate off,water will bead on the oil rather than mix.That is shown in trying to wash the Ballistol off of your hands after using the product.Which is not easy.
Strange as it might seem,even with the Ballistol mixed with water it does not allow corrosion to start.The water evaporates and the oil remains on the surfaces.I can also attest that rain beads on metal treated with Ballistol.Ive spent alot of time out in the open with little PM,weapons exposed to water and sweat.Water beads and absolutely no corrosion as a result.I also have acidic skin and I will etch a blued barrel in no time.Again not a single issue.
Now I dont know if it is the formula/chemistry used or what but the stuff works as advertised.
I do know that they use mineral and vegital oils.The vegital oils are used as oxygen binders,which to me means inhibitor package.The mineral oil used is more of a thin vaseline once the volatiles evaporate.So its not the same mineral oil as used in say baby oil as some folks say on the forums.The formula is a bit more complex than folks tend to believe on some of the other gun forums.
Its amazing though,that something formulated a 100 years ago can work so well.I guess the Wehrmacht had a product description that Klever was able to meet.
I look at it as our current CLP mil-specs of today.
Back then they were dealing with corrosive primers,wood stocks and leather.
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 1:54:01 PM EST
Thanks Blankwaffe. I know the alcohol will emulsify with water and the MSDS does deal with stock product, not product that has been out in order for the volatiles to evap., so you might be right. I read somewhere that Ballistol might have a hydrolysis problem, not sure where.

After a quick google:

Soaps are water-soluble sodium or potassium salts of fatty acids. Soaps are made from fats and oils, or their fatty acids, by treating them chemically with a strong alkali.

www.cleaning101.com/cleaning/chemistry/
So you are right about the source of pH and it is probably the thickener as well. Probably won't hydrolyse.
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 3:06:13 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/5/2008 3:17:31 PM EST by Blankwaffe98]

Originally Posted By Tempest45:
Thanks Blankwaffe. I know the alcohol will emulsify with water and the MSDS does deal with stock product, not product that has been out in order for the volatiles to evap., so you might be right. I read somewhere that Ballistol might have a hydrolysis problem, not sure where.

After a quick google:

Soaps are water-soluble sodium or potassium salts of fatty acids. Soaps are made from fats and oils, or their fatty acids, by treating them chemically with a strong alkali.

www.cleaning101.com/cleaning/chemistry/
So you are right about the source of pH and it is probably the thickener as well. Probably won't hydrolyse.


Ive seen no evidence of it.For instance I have bright steel polished barrels(1842 Springfields) coated in Ballistol,have been for years and they remain bright.Like I said it seems that once the volatiles evaporate the oil forms a solid film and repels moisture.
The base oil is coal/mineral and is similar IMHO to the Scheibe that Klever manufactures.I truely suspect the base oil is similar to a very light vaseline type lubricant.Which is probably why it stays put so well.
The pH is very low on the scale,just enough to be effective and similar to Hoppe's No.9 in that regard.Hoppe's No.9 is a slightly more potent.
Ballistol is one of the few gun oils I consider safe for the body...well other than the alcohol but thats a moot point really.Certainly does not affect my skin at all.
Interesting old formulations and thats for sure.
Link Posted: 6/5/2008 8:11:11 PM EST
[Last Edit: 6/5/2008 8:12:11 PM EST by husker_t]
Just as an example of how flexible Ballistol is, today I took several pistols to the range (this would have applied equally to an AR). When I got home here's all the stuff I used Ballistol for on the pistols:

* Put it on patches to pull through and clean the barrel initially. Then used the Wipe-Out bore cleaner to remove copper, then used Ballistol again at the end to protect the bore.

* Sprayed out the inside of the pistols with Gun Scrubber.

* Put Ballistol on Q-tips to clean small hard-to-reach places inside the pistol.

* Used a dropper bottle to put drops of Ballistol on internal lube points, rails, etc.

* Took a paper towel after reassembling the pistol, and wiped the whole exterior down with Ballistol: slide, plastic grips, sights, trigger, EVERYTHING. Wouldn't do THAT with most lubes on the market.

* Disassembled the mags, which are made out of plastic and steel parts. Washed them in soap and water, then wiped down the springs, metal, and plastic parts with a VERY light coat of Ballistol.


You could use Ballistol for similar purposes on your AR, and I often do. Just gives you an example of how flexible it is, and how you can use it on virtually every part of the gun.



Link Posted: 6/5/2008 9:02:00 PM EST

Originally Posted By Blankwaffe98:

Originally Posted By JTinIN:
Use Ballistol for anything that does not have a chrome bore and that I would like to shoot under 1.498 MOA (left over from Bench rest days where we never put anything with Teflon down the bore ... don't know if it matters or not, however, better safe than sorry ;-).

For everything else that is not black powder or requires a light grease (aka M1/M14) I use a combination of CLP for over all lube and the discontinued Break Free 20mm auto cannon lube for the higher pressure / contact points.

For emergency cleaning in the field use either a Spray can of Break Free CLP possible following pre-cleaning with brake cleaner (shooting NFA a lot of they guys run until the gun stops, which for an Uzi is over a half dozen cases of ammo ;-).



Ballistol does not contain PTFE or any other type of friction modifiers.


Which is the exact reason I use it on those firearms that I worry a little bit more about (i.e. the crome lined M16 barrel is not something that I worry about accuracy .. that much ;-).
Link Posted: 6/6/2008 8:50:45 AM EST
By the way, the rust test I wanted to link to earlier, but couldn't because the site was offline, is now back and available.

It's a test at the Connecticut Muzzleloaders site, and shows that Ballistol and Eezox are outstanding at providing corrosion protection. Note the various pieces of steel, the one marked "B" is the Ballistol, and even after a week it has less rust than all the other types tried, except for Eezox and some other stuff they used (Lehigh Valley lube).

Rust test
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