Corrosive 7.62x54R?


October 13, 2004, 10:42 PM
I had a bad experience tonight. I was digging through my gun safe when I noticed that there was some rust on the end of my Mosin 91/30 that I bought about a month ago. I looked down the barrel and it was coated with rust. :( After I shot it a couple of weeks ago I cleaned like I normally do but did not use the procedure I use for corrosive ammo. Seeing how I haven't had this happen to any on my other guns I was wondering if the ammo I shot was corrosive. What I shot was Hungarian Silver/Yellow tip 174gr from AIM Surplus. It was produced in 1975 so I assumed it was non-corrosive. Was I wrong?

Anyway, I cleaned the barrel but it looks like there is some pitting that wasn't there before. It made me kind sick when I saw that but I guess I'll just chalk this one up to experience. I told myself that it wasn't worth getting worked up over a $70 rifle.

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October 13, 2004, 11:04 PM
You can assume pretty much any and all surplus is corrosive.

October 13, 2004, 11:08 PM
It still sucks to find out about it the hard way.

Come to think of it though, I have a case of 7.62 NATO that is absolutely not corrosive. After shooting 500 rounds I think I would have had the same problem by now.

October 13, 2004, 11:09 PM
I'm sure you were expecting this reply, but if you're going to assume, err on the side of caution by assuming foreign surplus to be corrosive.

As for that particular ammunition, I'm fairly certain it is considered corrosive. The best way to clean up after shooting corrosive fodder is first to swab the barrel with a patches soaked with hot or warm soapy water until you end up with a clean patch. Swab with some dry patches and then clean as you normally do.
I've been using corrosive ammunition for some time now with no ill effects.

BTW, as bad as pitting may make a bore look, it seldom ever seriously effects accuracy. A simple nick on the crown can effect accuracy far more than a pitted barrel. I've seen rifles with slightly pitted bores shoot better than an identical model with seemingly pristine bores. I'm sure your rifle is no less a shooter.

October 14, 2004, 01:02 PM
Yep, its corrosive. Good shooting (silver) but corrosive. To save my guns (they may only be $70, but thats always $70 I could put towards a different one), I always assume surplus is corrosive, until I know otherwise. It doesn't take much longer to clean, and it's just smart.

Speaking of which, use water down the barrel. Corrosive ammo produce salts when it is shot, and that salt sitting in the barrel will absorb water. And I assume you know now what salt water does to metal :p Anyway, large amounts of water will dissolve the salts, then just clean regularly.

October 14, 2004, 02:45 PM
Hmm I should have specified that I meant 7.62x54R surplus. Same for 8mm.

I know some .308 isn't, the 7.5 Swiss isn't, I think that Lake City M2 30-06 isn't. Seems like a lot of the eastern bloc stuff though is.

Anyway, better to assume and be wrong than not.

And as mentioned, the pitting might not mess accuracy up too much, if at all. Only way to know for sure is to shoot it.

October 14, 2004, 03:40 PM
I've always had good luck using a no name window cleaner that contains ammonia. I have a Turkish mauser that I've shot corrosive 8mm through for about 2 years and I've never had this happen.

The biggest thing that bothers me is that I was always rised to take care of what I have. I just wish I would have noticed this earlier.

October 14, 2004, 08:59 PM
Ammonia does NOTHING for "corrosive" primer residue. It wil remove copper, but it's the water that's disolving the salt. Plain hot water is all you need, no soap or any other additive is necessary. After firing corrosive ammo, run a couple of dry patches throug the bore to remove any superficial fouling, then pour 5-6 pints of boiling water into the bore from the chamber. A automatic transmission fluid funnel works well. Dry the bore, then clean normally. Leave a light film of oil in the bore for storage. Ed's Red with lanoline works great for this part.

October 15, 2004, 12:25 AM
SMLE, this is not my area of expertise, and I am not saying you are wrong, but I thought that an ammonia/water mixture was the preferred solution for cleaning corrosive residue. Are you sure the ammonia doesn't do something "good" to react with and remove the corrosive salts? I'm just curious; I've never read this before.

October 15, 2004, 12:41 AM
Ammonia dries very quickly even if it does not help with the corrosive stuff at all. I just don't like the idea of pouring a few pints of water down my gun. Just kinda goes against years of "uh oh!" instinct.

October 15, 2004, 02:20 PM
The good news is your gun is probably fine. Clean it up, of course, but you probably haven't ruined anything except perhaps for the bright shiny bore. It might be a bit dark from now on, but accuracy is probably no worse off.

As far as 7.62x54 goes, all military is corrosive, as everyone has said. Be careful, however, because most commercial ammo made in Russia and Hungary is also corrosive. The Barnaul, IMI, and LVE ammo is certainly corrosive, as well as older Wolf (which is the new name for LVE ammo). Only Sellier and Bellot (also Winchester), Norma, Lapua, FMP, Hansen, Privi-Partisan, and any other brass-cased, boxer primed ammo is safely non-corrosive.


October 15, 2004, 04:30 PM
If ammonia has any effect on the salt, it is minimal. It is really only useful for removing copper.


Have no fear of pouring water down your bore., just keep it in IN the bore and avoid letting it get under the wood. HOT water will evaporate fairly quickly. One reason the use at least 5 pints is that this will get the barrel good and hot too and will speed evaporation as well as get more stuff out of the pores of hte metal.

October 15, 2004, 05:07 PM
I use a mixture of 50/50 ammonia and water. I run several wet patches through the bore, dry, then a few patches of solvent and oil.

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