Cleaning a rusty rifle?


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Old 10-15-2011, 05:50 PM   #1
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Default Cleaning a rusty rifle?

Hello I have a .22 Marlin Golden 39-A Lever Action. This rifle has survived a lot. It’s been in an apartment fire were only a hand full of items even made it out. This gun was my first and it’s noting special but I would like to restore it to a point. The gun was in a cheap fabric case in between a mattress and box spring. During the fire the metal started heating up that cause the wood to warp and change color. Wherever the metal touched the wood it turn black but it looks like it kept the finish. I love the look of the gun and its still working great. The rifle sat in water for two months. But there is no rust in the barrel only everywhere else. But its just surface rust there is hardly pitting. I was wondering how to I go about cleaning off the rust and stop it from coming back. You can see all the pictures of the Rifle on my profile .



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Old 10-15-2011, 05:54 PM   #2
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Wow, it doesn't look bad at all considering what it's been through.

I would scrub the rust off with Hoppe's or an oil based solvent (motor oil will help loosen it up too) and a stiff bristled brush, and then if the finish is too messed up or the rust keeps coming back, have the metal refinished.



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Old 10-15-2011, 05:55 PM   #3
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I just removed a bit of surface rust off my Dad's Marlin with #0000 steel wool soaked in oil. The surface rust came off very nicely. I then cleaned and oiled the whole gun. The bluing is gone from where the rust is but I don't think it will rust any further after removing the rust and oiling. I may get it reblued sometime in the future.

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Old 10-15-2011, 06:05 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doomrus26 View Post
Hello I have a .22 Marlin Golden 39-A Lever Action. This rifle has survived a lot. It’s been in an apartment fire were only a hand full of items even made it out. This gun was my first and it’s noting special but I would like to restore it to a point. The gun was in a cheap fabric case in between a mattress and box spring. During the fire the metal started heating up that cause the wood to warp and change color. Wherever the metal touched the wood it turn black but it looks like it kept the finish. I love the look of the gun and its still working great. The rifle sat in water for two months. But there is no rust in the barrel only everywhere else. But its just surface rust there is hardly pitting. I was wondering how to I go about cleaning off the rust and stop it from coming back. You can see all the pictures of the Rifle on my profile .
im sorry to here that you had this loss. But im even more sorry to bear the bad news this gun is now unsafe to fire ever again. the temper of the the metal in the receiver is now changed and is most likely very britel. a very good chance it will crack and go off in your face now. If you are just cleaning it up for looks than i would say use some CBC rust remover along with you oild steel wool. when you done removing the rust get some cold blue and dip the gun and oil it every day for a month.
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Old 10-15-2011, 06:16 PM   #5
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What are the first two digits of the serial number?


The 39a is the finest shooting 22 out there imho. I think you should send it to a reputable gunsmith and have it professionally refinished.

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Old 10-15-2011, 06:18 PM   #6
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im sorry to here that you had this loss. But im even more sorry to bear the bad news this gun is now unsafe to fire ever again. the temper of the the metal in the receiver is now changed and is most likely very britel. a very good chance it will crack and go off in your face now. If you are just cleaning it up for looks than i would say use some CBC rust remover along with you oild steel wool. when you done removing the rust get some cold blue and dip the gun and oil it every day for a month.
Could be right, but considering the firearm didn't quite get hot enough to actually burn the wood (451 degrees Fahrenheit right?), personally I wouldn't have a problem shooting it. And the OP has already been shooting it.

That being said, I will not be held liable if it does hurt someone. What I would do is one thing, and I take no responsibility for anyone's actions except my wife and son.
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Old 10-15-2011, 08:31 PM   #7
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if the springs still work then it did not hurt the temper in the metal. a 22 rifle is almost all made from soft steel anyway. The springs are hard and the firing pin is hard, but that is about it. barrel steel on US guns (even deer rifles) are most all quite soft. I've drilled and tapped or cut dovetails etc in many many guns. Thank goodness the metal was all soft except for rare exceptions.

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Old 01-22-2013, 08:42 PM   #8
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Thanks for the all the info its been a little over a year and i took all the advice. I cleaned the gun my self with a little steel wool and a lot of oil. I have to keep it oiled up nice and good all the time because I don't have the funds at the moment to re-blue it. But i will say it works great i have shot a few hundred rounds and it works flawlessly.

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Old 01-27-2013, 02:59 AM   #9
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Whenever I need to deal with rust on a gun, generally use Blue Wonder cleaner with some steel wool. Nice thing about Blue Wonder, does a good job on rust and does not harm blueing. It is a good bore cleaner too. By the way, RB17 and Blue Wonder are basically the same product.

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Old 01-27-2013, 03:14 AM   #10
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I would not tell anyone to use a firearm that has been thru a fire. This was not heated evenly. There is no way of knowing what heat treat damage that may have occured. If gas should escape in the shooters face around the firing pin the results could be real bad. I know of no real gunsmith who would recover that rifle for shooting.



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