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GUNS Magazine January 2012 Digital Edition - Page 78

STORY: John Connor Pinchin’ Pennies in the New Year. ’m not really a cheapskate—not in my heart, anyway. It’s just that I decided to have kids rather than cash, y’know? But I admit, when I look at some price tags, I hear bagpipes wailin’ and the Scottish blood runs in me like the Rogue River at spring thaw. The way the economy is going—or not goin’—2012 is lookin’ like a great year for penny-pinching, ain’t it? Recently, I barely dodged the bullet tape strips. Voilà! Cheap, highly effecon some serious flooding damage. tive desiccant. And yes, they can be I had to rescue and repack enough refreshed on a baking sheet in the ammo to make Hillary faint dead oven at 170 degrees F for an hour or away and Eric Holder issue a fatwa on so. If you don’t mind the mess, you me. They’d call it an “arsenal.” I call it can pour it in loose, but since I was “a good start.” Anyway, it was so wet discarding damp paperboard boxes you coulda wrung out the air into a and packing loose rounds, the teabags bucket. I bought new airtight contain- were a great choice. Note: Do not let ers, but if I packed that ammo with- Fluffy use the litter before you bag it. out desiccant it would be destroyed Penny squeezin’ ‘Til anyway. I needed powerful desiccant honest Abe squeaks and lots of it, preferably cheap! Have you ever tried to buy desiccant packs A quick survey of some premium in bulk? And as a chemical-savvy synthetic gun lubes show retails of friend cautioned, often they’ve lost $2.50 to $7 per ounce. At about $8 considerable effectiveness by the time per quart, Mobil 1 synthetic motor oil you get them. runs 25¢ per ounce. I recently joined a “Follow me, pal,” my buddy said, 1/2-dozen shooters I know and more and led the way to a grocery store. I’m acquainted with who service their There he grabbed an 8-pound bag lube-thirsty ARs with Mobil 1. Most of kitty litter, two also very selectively boxes of storeapply dabs of light brand teabags withsynthetic grease on out strings and tags, the hardest wear and a cheap roll of points. 2-inch wide packing Will it stand up tape. The primary to an AR’s heat and ingredient in Fresh friction? Oh, yeah. Step kitty litter is Those I’ve spoken silica gel—desicwith have had cant!—and no fillers outstanding results. which would break Now, whether down and fail. Reguyou’re using highlar kitty litter won’t end gun-goop or cut it. The teabags Mobil 1, you want were 200 for 2 bucks. to avoid wastage We slit the by excessive lubing teabags, poured the and greasing. A Try tea into a canisPak of six syringes ter, filled the bags Kitty litter, teabags, motor oil and a in 10, 30 and 50cc with silica gel, then Corning tempered glass Tactical Banana—a sizes costs $14.99 sealed the ends with good start to a New Year! from Brownells, 2012 on The cheAP I and they’ll put just the right amount exactly where you need it. They’re cleanable and reusable almost indefinitely, saving both time and money. If you shoot a DGI—Direct Gas Impingement—AR, consider purchasing a FailZero or NP3-Plus treated bolt and carrier group. You’ll virtually eliminate wear, and save countless hours of carbon-scraping and cleaning. Several shooters I know lube their receivers with Mobil 1 and run FailZero or NP3-Plus BCG’s lubeless for thousands of rounds between easy, wipe-off cleanings. If you’re devoting way too much time to soakin’ and scrapin’ carbon fouling and too much money on goop, try a home-brewed batch of “Ed’s Red.” It’s sold commercially, but like its inventor, C.E. “Ed” Harris, you can mix some yourself. Ed’s updated formula calls for equal amounts of Dexron automatic transmission fluid, K1 (deodorized) kerosene, aliphatic mineral spirits, and acetone, with an optional dollop of anhydrous lanolin. Ed wrote that the acetone was also optional, resulting in a less volatile though somewhat slower-working mixture. It’s not very effective on copper fouling, but kicks butt on lead fouling and caked carbon deposits—and the better you eliminate the latter two in rifle bores, the less copper fouling you’ll get. A widely-used simpler variation of the mix calls for equal amounts of diesel fuel, ATF and mineral spirits, and it’s said to work very well. Just be very careful to take proper ventilation, flammability and handling precautions with these potions. snakes, swabs & cents I’ve kept a couple of Boresnakes in my range bags for years, erratically using them to make a quick solvent pass through still-warm barrels before heading home to bust out my expensive, eclectic collection of rods, brushes, patches and gizmos—to do a “real cleaning,” y’know? When Hoppe’s introduced their Viper Boresnake, claiming 50-percent greater efficiency, I decided to do a semi-scientific test. I found first, it’s 78 W W W. G U N S M A G A Z I N E . C O M • J A N U A R Y 2 0 1 2

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