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Thread: Corrosive Primer Question

  1. #1
    Boolit Master

    avogunner's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Northern Va

    Corrosive Primer Question

    First off, I have no concerns about shooting corrosive primed surplus ammunition (if WWII M2 Ball was still as plentiful and cheap as it once was, I'd buy a ton of it). As we all know, with proper cleaning it's really a non-issue but with that said .... a question -- if one was to shoot a few non-corrosive rounds after shooting corrosive, would that "blow" out the corrosive salts (potassium chloride or sodium chloride) left behind in a barrel? Some? None?

    Again, I ask not to suggest a replacement for proper cleaning, but only for academic purposes. Thoughts?

    Thanks and Semper Fi!

  2. #2
    Boolit Grand Master Outpost75's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2013
    over the hill, out in the woods and far away
    Shooting non-corrosive after corrosive simply makes the cleaning task more difficult as you have corrosive primer fouling impacted into the bore surface under a layer of other fouling so that it is more difficult to remove. ALWAYS clean after corrosive before changing ammo.

    The WW2 era ammo has great shelf life and I still use cal. .30 and .45 ACP from the 1930s and 40s. Use your Natick cooker to heat water in a canteen cup and use cake Bon Ami, Calgon, Fels - Naphtha or GI salt water soap to clean your Garand just like Grandpa did. Ivory will also work, but is not "traditional".

    In my experience Ballistol is not as good as hot, soapy water, but is OK for the lazy Sad Sacks who don't dry and oil separately. Maybe that is why the Wehrmacht lost the war?
    The ENEMY is listening.
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  3. #3
    Boolit Master

    GregLaROCHE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Southern France by way of Interior Bush Alaska
    After shooting BP rounds in my 45/70, I often shoot a couple rounds of smokeless through it. I think it makes the clean up faster. Seems like it would help with corrosive primers to. However, I would still run a patch of bore cleaner followed by a dry one and then one with oil on it.

  4. #4
    Moderator Emeritus

    georgerkahn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    South of the (Canada) border
    First, I agree with Outpost75's comments 100%! The can of Ballistol indicates a 10% Ballistol/90% water mix is good for removing corrosive ammo residue. My experience is to heat up a teapot of plain-Jane water, and fill a cup with a squirt of Dawn in it which is then funneled down the barrel. I make certain the firearm is upside down to not get much into action. Then, I run a swab through, from breech to muzzle, pulled with an Otis wire. I follow with -- now almost boiling -- plain water, straight from teapot through a funnel into barrel.
    After a few patches pulled through to dry it, I follow with a patch or two wet with Isopropyl alcohol. Next, I do a "normal" barrel clean using Butch's Bore Shine -- or, Holland's Witches Brew is barrel got real dirty -- followed by a patch or two saturated with Lighter Fluid followed by a thin coating of Butch's Gun Oil.
    Several 1903, 1917, 03A3's -- this has worked quite well. Some of ammo I have shot is DEFINITE corrosive, with quite a bit, too, "most probable!".
    To my way of thinking, it is the SALT residue which is problematic -- and, to my thinking, the *HOT* water is the best solution to dissolve it and keep it's moisture attracting characteristic from causing barrel rust/corrosion. The added detergent reduces surface tension, perhaps enabling the salt to be better dissolved and flushed. (?)

  5. #5
    Boolit Master
    TNsailorman's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Northeast Tennessee Hills
    I have to agree with georgekahn, hot water and a good soap (dawn or some other grease cutter). I no longer use corrosive ammo (I replace any corrosive primers with Federal or Winchester). But when I did shoot that stuff, I used a method almost identical to George's. The hotter the water, the better and his boiling water is great. I use the same methods of cleaning on my black powder rifles. my experience anyway, james

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check