Today's Gunpowder/Smokeless powder Will not Rust your Gun right?

Discussion in 'Ammunition & Reloading' started by CAMCHAMPION1988, Oct 30, 2011.

  1. CAMCHAMPION1988

    CAMCHAMPION1988 New Member

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    Yes i know black powder what was used back then would rust your gun because the residue and/or unburnt powder would attract moisture. Then there was Mercury primers which mercury would attract moisture not the powder residure and/or unburnt powder. It was the Mercury from the primers that would attract the moisture not the powder and or residure or unburnt powder right? I hear of ammo from the 1950's being the type that would rust your gun.

    I only hear of black powder being used by musket enthusiasts, civil war renactors and experimental firearms.

    But Today's smokeless powder that is used in todays cartridges will not attract moisture no matter what even if the gun has not been cleaned. So you could leave a gun dirty forever and it would never rust right??? Also nobody uses Mercury Primers anymore right? Just wondering i actually do a 100% take down ( Not Just a Field Strip ) of all my guns after every single time i shoot them. I Know that is a little to over obsessive unecessary for any firearm.
     
  2. fmj

    fmj Active Member

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    Yes, todays smokeless powder is non-corrosive.

    Pyrodex and other black powder substitututes are.
     

  3. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

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    The basic premise would hold true except for that little problem of copper fouling. This comes from dissimilar metals, the steel/chrome moly of the barrel and the small, copper particles that come off the bullet due to the lands and grooves of the rifling.

    They don't live well together and cause "pitting", which is metal pot marking inside the lands and grooves on the interior of the barrel itself, especially closer to the muzzle.

    In a modern .22lr round, assuming it's not copper jacketed, you can get away without cleaning for 100's of rounds and a lot of shooters do exactly that.

    Outside of that limited application I would recommend against shooting and storing a modern firearm without running a brush and set of pads down the barrel.

    JD
     
  4. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Just to clarify- smokeless powder is based on nitrocellulose, or nitrocellulose and nitroglycerin. It is not corrosive. Beginning in the 1920s, primers switched from fulminate of mercury (which damaged the brass due to forming an amalgam with the copper in the brass) and was replaced with primers based on potassium chlorate. When fired, those "corrosive" primers form potassium chloride- a first cousin to table salt. In the 1950s, the US began to replace those with primers based on lead azide- the "non-corrosive" primer. The Soviets and the Chinese were a LONG time changing over.
     
  5. Dillinger

    Dillinger New Member

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    ^^^^ Your in-depth knowledge of small arms history never ceases to amaze even me, and I have read A LOT of books. :eek:

    Thanks for the education once again C3!

    JD
     
  6. fmj

    fmj Active Member

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    Asked a simple question, gave a simple answer and was left feeling stupid. :eek: SHEESH! :)
     
  7. hiwall

    hiwall Well-Known Member

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    Just because the residue won't promote rust does not mean that it will prevent rust. When you shoot it removes any oil in the bore. And the residue left behind might slightly protect to some small degree but the bore can still rust. If you live in an area of high humidity I would think the bore would start rust after a reasonably short time.