Mineral spirits and cosmoline


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JamisJockey
December 9, 2004, 05:23 PM
Here's the story:
I've got a new (to me) pretty good condition SKS with a fair ammount of cosmoline in the action. I've been told by several sources to use acetone, so I got started. Don't have alot of time, so some of the parts are soaking outside. I headed in to clean up and used some mineral spirits on my hands, it ate the cosmoline right off!
Can I use mineral spirits to clean the cosmoline without damaging the gun?

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Chipperman
December 9, 2004, 05:37 PM
Yes. A lot of people use Mineral Spirits.

R.H. Lee
December 9, 2004, 06:04 PM
I used mineral spirits on my Yugo and it didn't hurt anything, BUT, I wasn't real impressed with its ability to remove the cosmo, either. It took a LOT of scrubbing. Be sure to get ALL the comso out of the bolt, too. The firing pin should 'rattle' when you shake the bolt. Failure to do so could cause slamfires! :what:

George S.
December 9, 2004, 07:27 PM
Detail strip and let the parts soak in mineral spirits overnight. Use something like an old toothbrush to clean any cosmo residue from the parts.

You can also use mineral spirits to clean any cosmoline, grease or dirt from the stock. Denatured alcohol also works on the stock if you intend to refinish it.

HSMITH
December 9, 2004, 07:54 PM
WD-40 works well on cosmoline too, about as well as anything else that won't eat finishes anyway.

spin180
December 9, 2004, 07:59 PM
Lemon oil works fairly well too... and it smells good.

;)

Zundfolge
December 9, 2004, 08:01 PM
I also keep hearing about how soaking in Simple Green works ... haven't tried it but it would be the least toxic method if it works.

JamisJockey
December 9, 2004, 08:34 PM
I might have to take a whack at the simple green on the stock. I use simple green to clean my bicycles, and it works pretty good on the drivetrain grease.

7.62FullMetalJacket
December 9, 2004, 08:40 PM
Mineral spirits is a much better choice than acetone. Simple Green is water based. So long as you oil her up afterwards.

yesterdaysyouth
December 9, 2004, 08:41 PM
i use soap based stuff to clean up all my milsurps... wood and steel both, just spray on and wipe off... or you can just let it run off if you're busy... i use an iron and wet rag to get out the deep soaked in stuff...

USP45usp
December 9, 2004, 08:54 PM
I use purple stuff (purple power?). It takes the cosmo and makes it history quickly.

One word of warning DO NOT GET THIS ON YOUR WOOD (FURNITURE) BECAUSE IT WILL DRY IT OUT BADLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wayne

Standing Wolf
December 9, 2004, 09:09 PM
I've been using mineral spirits on firearms for decades without harm—but only after removing all wood, plastic, and rubber components, of course.

LynnMassGuy
December 10, 2004, 01:15 PM
Mineral spirits, a brush, a rag, and a bucket. That's all I ever use for cosmo.

dleong
December 10, 2004, 02:07 PM
Brake cleaner does a wonderful job of removing cosmoline. Just be sure to lubricate everything after you're done, as the brake cleaner will leave all the parts bone dry.

DL

JamisJockey
December 10, 2004, 11:29 PM
Update:
The mineral spirits are doing a bang up job on the sks. I am almost finished, and its cleaning up nicely.

cracked butt
December 11, 2004, 01:55 AM
Mineral spirits works just fine.
I've also used denatured ethanol.
Boiling water works great also.

One word of warning DO NOT GET THIS ON YOUR WOOD (FURNITURE) BECAUSE IT WILL DRY IT OUT BADLY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This can be a good thing -such as when the wood is soaked with cosmoline or oil.

oweno
December 11, 2004, 07:53 AM
A while back on The Firing Line, I asked the same question about a new Bulgarian Makarov I'd just picked up. The answers I got included: Put it in a toaster oven; Run it through the dishwasher, boil it in water with some Mr. Clean added, etc. What I finally did was:

Field strip, remove grips.
Put all the parts in a black paint roller tray, put tray in the hot August sun for 3 or 4 hours (not much help in December I'll grant you).
Remove parts, shake dry. Blast with CRC Brakcleen. Work the nooks and crannies with toothbrush & toothpicks.
Give the entire piece a quick shot of Remington spray gun oil...wipe off excess.
Lubricate with your favorite grease and oil, reasseble, and you're good to go.

btw, the cosmolene on that Mak was as hard as a rock and found its way into places that I didn't know were possible - for example, the firing pin channel - I'm really glad I took the firing pin out and cleaned both it and the channel well. Slamfires are a Bad Thing (tm),

ChairborneRanger
December 11, 2004, 11:38 AM
If you REALLY want to clean it, use lacquor thinner---that will clean ANYTHING! IMHO, mineral spirits are for "girlymen"......just kidding!!

ToxicSports
December 11, 2004, 03:01 PM
Hey all,

Those are some good suggestions and I have used many of them in the past.

However, I found a site that gives an interesting alternative to the chemicals suggested and review on how to clean that good ol' cosmoline from your rifle.

Check this out:

http://www.surplusrifle.com/shooting/cosmoline/index.asp

I don't have any first hand knowledge but this guy has never let me down when it comes to cleaning my other toys.

TS

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