Over many posts read here, no one seems to use WD-40 as a lube or cleaning solution due to different issues I have read.
So it was kind of strange reading an old May 1993 Guns & Ammo Mag about the H&K USP to find an ad for WD-40, What every gun owner should be shooting. Stating how it protects, light, quick drying, etc.
So did anyone used to use it? Or what's up with the change in use?
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April 1, 2003, 03:07 AM
I'm sure I don't want to use it on my carry/home defense weapons. WD-40 is a penetrating oil (WD=water displacement). Last thing I need is for it to get into my primer and ruin it. As they say, the only thing louder than that reasuring "BANG!" is that little "click".
Will it happen? Can't tell you. But I see no reason to take the risk.
April 1, 2003, 03:54 AM
Your quote of the Company's description/ad is the best reason--
It dries out and there is no lube--(also granted the Primer contamination problem listed above by Croyance)
The first Ill State trooper to die from gunshot wounds holding a Jammed S&W Mdl #39 used WD40 (1970's) and it was generally believed that the products drying capability left the weapon without lubricatiion and prevented theTrooper from defending himself.
If you use WD40 you need to relube regularly--
April 1, 2003, 04:21 AM
So even though a jammed gun in 1970 happened, they were still advertising in 1993 as a lube? Scary...
Glad I didn't see this Guns and Ammo until I had read from the forum a lot, might have actually tried it. Though it does work on lots of stuff around the house!
Random question, random thoughts, thanks for the middle of night responses!
April 1, 2003, 04:44 AM
it's my understanding that the rust prevention in wd40 is shellac or varnish
April 1, 2003, 05:09 AM
WD-40 has been one of the biggest marketing scams ever. First the company did not develop make or package it , they only marketed it. It was originally only a penetrant ( it will penetrate and kill a primer). But they marketed it for everything . Those that used it on steel, guns , tools etc found the steel rusted. There were so many complaints that they added some rust preventative. In any case WD-40 has no place in guns since you don't need a penetrant. There are many fine lubes for firearms some specifically designed for the job so throw out the WD-40.
April 1, 2003, 05:39 AM
WD-40 is a 'rinse' when cleaning my gun.
Then I lube it.
April 1, 2003, 07:13 AM
I use WD-40 as a pre-rinse on my autos, to get crap out of trigger mechanisms, without harshly removing greases, field strip gun, hold frame assembly over trash can, spray into top of frame, trigger area, etc.
I don't trust brake cleaner on polymer guns, or guns with wood grips. Matter of fact, I would only use brake cleaner as a prelude to a very intensive disassembly, where I could relube the parts after they were cleaned.
Lay parts on small stack of paper towels, go get a beer, and start cleaning.
As a lube, I don't know anyone that I trust that would actually recommend using WD-40 as any type of gun lube.
Maybe lightly spray into bore 1/2 hour before shooting, then let pistol sit barrel down, to drain residual oil before shooting?
Double Naught Spy
April 1, 2003, 08:29 AM
One should NOT use WD-40 on guns unless you have had some water issue, such as dropping your firearm in the lake (like during duck hunting) or caught in a flood. Then it is great to do what it is designed to do, displace water.
WD-40 can be used as a lube, but it is a very short term and light lube. It can serve best as a lube when trying to free up parts rusted together. So a gun jammed in the 70s and they were still calling it a lube in the 90s. So what? It wasn't used properly. All lubes will eventually fail when not used properly.
The one really big problem is not so much that the WD-40 dries, but that it dries and leaves a residue behind that is a light petroleum varnish. Over time, that layer of varnish can build up on the gun and can negatively impact the functioning of the gun.
caz223, if you are looking for a good product to blow out crap from around the trigger and what not, I suggest you get a spray can to Tetra or Rem Lube for the process. I use them as a pre-wash as you noted for WD-40 and they work just fine, do actually provide lube, and are fairly inexpensive.
April 1, 2003, 10:20 AM
I've only found 3 uses for WD-40 ever.
1. Cleaning cosmoline off milsurps.
2. A final treatment down the bore of milsurps---that's after shooting corrosive ammo then using soap and water.
3. Getting rust off a bicycle chain--that I stupidly loaned to a buddy when his car was broken down---he rode the heck out it and didn't take care of it one bit---so it came back to me completely rusted.
April 1, 2003, 10:45 AM
That horrible coating WD-40 leaves when it dries is OUTSTANDING for rust prevention on firearms. It works nearly as well as the heavy wax coating CLP will leave.
Everyone should take at least 5 rounds of your best factory ammo and hose it down with WD-40 every day for 2 weeks minimum. A month, 100 rounds and twice a day would be better. Then take it to the range and shoot it. Note the number of misfires and report back.
WD-40 on guns is a huge deal made about very little. It works fine if you are not an idiot, and is LESS prone to buildup than CLP. As you have guessed I use it for over 20 years, and on some guns in heavy quantities. It has never caused a problem for me.
April 1, 2003, 11:08 AM
Learned along time ago to keep my firearms and WD-40 separate. There are PLENTY of very qualified & proven alternatives on the market to keep WD 40 out of the mix.
April 1, 2003, 01:23 PM
About the only thing I use WD-40 for is for squeaky hinges, freeing rusted screws and bolts, and occasionally in conjunction with a butane lighter to torch an agressive mosquito on the deck.
I've done the "hose down the ammo" trick some years ago. 6 dead shells after 1 hosing and about a month's wait.
My Father is a civil engineer, and years ago bought a rather precise instrument (I'll be darned if I can remember what it was, but it had a series of rollers and a dial read out, so it was some sort of measuring device for drafting table use), that was completely crusted up.
The previous owner had regularly "lubricated" it with WD-40, had then retired and not thought about it for several years.
Dad and I took it apart (lots of small parts) and went through hell trying to clean it.
That's when I decided that WD-40 had no real place around my precision mechanical devices, such as guns.
April 1, 2003, 02:05 PM
WD-40 is mostly kerosene with a dab of machine oil thrown in to provide light lubrication. You can brew up a reasonable facsimile by taking a 5 gallon can of kerosene or diesel and adding 1/2 a quart of Marvel Mystery Oil (use a little less MMO if you start with diesel).
The kerosene base in WD-40 evaporates quickly. Since kerosene is relatively "dry" it only leaves behind a light residue of varnish. The teensy bit of lubricating oil it contains will also evaporate in short order. This means that WD-40 will work as a passable rust preventive, but fails to make the grade when it comes to long-term lubricity.
Although WD-40 still has many uses around the home and shop, it's days as a fix-and-protect-all for your guns have come to an end. Decades of research and product development have given us products that are far better for our appliction.
For more info see the following impromptu test of several cleaning and protectant products. (http://communities.prodigy.net/sportsrec/gz-rust.html) WD-40 fared well, but several products did much, much better.
April 1, 2003, 02:39 PM
I usually use WD-40 for water displacement, as it was intended. Just like it was mentioned before, WD-40 is good to displace the water after cleaning for corrosive salts and prior to regular cleaning.
I often clean the WD-40 out with a little contact cleaner, then lube.
April 1, 2003, 05:04 PM
I have an aquaintance, who like HSmith, swears by WD-40 for cleaning and lubricating his guns. He is a LEO with many years experience. He has a huge collection and one of the most knowledgeable people that I know on about any firearms subject. He does clean well and often - maybe that is the difference. I shy away from WD-40 myself for all the reasons that have been listed.
April 1, 2003, 05:21 PM
I used to use it on slip joint knives and slowly they all got to the point that you had to push the blade closed. Used gun scrubber on them along with a good soaking in gasoline, dried them out reoiled with regular machine oil and they work good. There is something to the varnish rumor.
April 1, 2003, 05:32 PM
I used to use Weapon Destroyer-40. Came home from the range and didn't feel like cleaning my Para-Ord/GoldCup frame kit 45 so I hosed it down with WD-40 until tomorrow when I could get to it. The WD attacked the Para-Ord frames finish overnight! Ruined it. The guys at PO were top notch about it and warrantied the frame for me and I dont let WD around my guns anymore.
April 1, 2003, 06:15 PM
I like WD as an occasional cleaner because it's relatively mild, so I can spray it directly on to my skin (holding parts). I wouldn't leave it on, displacing it with gun oil and wiping clean.
April 1, 2003, 06:30 PM
I've used WD-40 over decades for all kinds of jobs.
However, I've never had any inclination to use it on guns.
April 1, 2003, 07:25 PM
I have a piano hinge on a medicine cabinent mirror in my very moist bathroom. For years the thing would rust up, I would WD-40 or 3 In One oil it, it would be okay for a few months and then rust up again. Five years ago I put CLP Breakfree on this hinge and it has been free of rust ever since, and I have not had to put another CLP application on it since then.
WD-40 is fine for a quick drying out of a rusty lock, but even that is a misnomer. I put CLP in my hot tub lock, outside, all the time, and I never had to lubricate it again. CLP - quite amazing stuff. WD-40, just a temporary anti-humidity agent. Not a lube at all.
April 1, 2003, 07:42 PM
Been using it on my guns since they called it WD-39. Never had a problem or a rusty barrel.
April 1, 2003, 07:49 PM
Use it to displace water in places you can't get compressed air into effectively. Also, use it as "contact cleaner" for electrical switches and stuff. Last time I priced some genuine electrical contact cleaner in a spray can, I darn-near fainted.
April 1, 2003, 08:46 PM
Thank goodness my guns were dumb too and never rusted or reacted badly to it. I never had rust or any problems.
I now use Hoppes oil, because my smartness has made me read this forum.
But never had any trouble of any sort with WD-40.
April 2, 2003, 10:10 AM
I've used it as a cleaner, not as a lube.
You know you're a gun geek when you use FP10 on hinges. Think about this. How many times have you used WD-40 on a certain hinge more than once? I've never had to reapply FP10. ;)
Honestly, I've never had a problem with anything rusting with WD-40 use... I just don't understand why some folks are trying to pinch pennies that tightly. I mean, you have a bunch of guns, that add up to a lot of money, but you don't want to pop $5 for 4oz of FP10? Unless you're cleaning them just to be playing with them, it means you've been shooting them. And if you're footing the bill for ammo, or even reloading, proper lubricants are a teeny tiny itty bitty portion of the cost of firearm ownership. Get the good stuff.
In my humble opinion. ;)
April 2, 2003, 10:24 AM
I use WD-40 as a penetrating oil kind of stuff.
Does anyone else here remember when cars ignition systems had "Points and Condenser" mounted in the distributor ? ?
OK, OK...I hear all you under-30's going "Points? Condenser? Distributor? What is that old coot talking about? ? ? "
When those cars would get splashed under the hood from driving into standing water, etc, the distributors got soaked, and no more spark. A quick pop of the hood, and then remove the distributor cap, a fast spray and wipe, then you were on the road again.
But I don't use it on my weaposn, except as a very quick get the water off, and then clean it good.
April 2, 2003, 01:29 PM
Points and condenser, eh? You're showing your age - :D .
Next you'll probably try and teach us how to use a dwell meter, how to convert a flathead to an OHV, or set the metering pins on a Stromberg.
Not that I am old enough to know about these things.... :neener:
April 2, 2003, 01:42 PM
Remember, the plugs fire when the points OPEN...
April 2, 2003, 02:08 PM
Points, condensers, dwell, idle, you name it.
I helped a friend set all that on his Corvette a few months ago.
April 2, 2003, 02:58 PM
Have used for displacing moisture, from vehicles, machinery and guns. Last time I went duck hunting I fell not once--but twice.
Some hunt, WD -40 used on the points/condenser, the winch and my gun.
Kinda miss the old vehicles...especially the price tags:D
April 2, 2003, 08:49 PM
WD-40 is ideal for cleaning duck hunting shotguns.
April 3, 2003, 01:07 AM
Had a 82 dodge p-up which had a problem with condesation under the Distrbutor cap and I carried some wd40 with me and used it to dry out the cap when the truck would start to miss and sputter. I also like to spray it on my chrome bush guard to prevent surface rust esp in winter with all the salt used on our roads. Its also very handy to loosen rusted bolts and as a general metal protectant.
However, I use gun scrubber and sentry solutions on my firearms. :cool:
April 3, 2003, 01:15 AM
April 3, 2003, 09:23 AM
Wow, some good discussion about the WD-40... hope no one thought I wanted to use it as a lube though... I may be cheap, but I'm not that cheap!
April 3, 2003, 10:28 AM
Good for only three things.
1) Getting carbon jammmed pistols back in action in short order while on the range.
2) For flushing grit and other loose junk out when cleaning guns.
3) Is an excellent starting fluid for diesel engines. Far superior and much safer than ether.
April 3, 2003, 02:08 PM
I haven't found anything that i can do with WD-40 that i can't do better with other products. Kroil oil beats it all to heck for a penetrating oil and has other uses, CLP is a better lubricant and preservative. I don't care at all about its "water displacement" properties which i suspect is hype, i mean if i squirt oil or CLPin an area that it can penetrate to then it will displace water just as well. As soon as i use my present stock on my garage door fittings (where it does a poor job) i won't be buying anymore.
April 3, 2003, 02:42 PM
I only use WD-40 to clean cosmoline off milsurp rifles, including the stocks.
Then I clean & lube as usual with other "stuff".
April 3, 2003, 10:42 PM
Not only do I not use WD-40 on guns, Rem-Oil w/ Teflon has taken it's place on all my household lubing chores...:D
April 5, 2003, 08:15 AM
For a quick clean- I use WD-40 for both pistol and shotgun. Let soak for about 5 minutes, then wipe clean. This is followed by a wipe with a cleaning patch soaked with CLP, wipe with a dry patch and finally relube. Good for like when you are at the range, or when gun fired but a detailed clean is not possible.
Their really is a residue that is left so be careful you do not get it in spots that you cannot access to wipe clean.
I like it because it is a mild cleaner (I do not like the strong cleaners like Gun Scrubber or brake cleaner).
For detailed cleaning I use kerosene or mineral spirits and the parts are soaked here for up to 15 minutes. When I do a routine clean (clean done even though gun has not been fired) I only use CLP.
April 5, 2003, 09:45 AM
Man, this thread will not die... :rolleyes:
OK, my 2.5 cents...
Like a few other posters here, my gun cleaners and lubricants have almost superceded the use of WD40 in my house, although I do have a can of it on the bench.
Breakfree CLP is the best door hinge lubricant... bar none... :D
Birchwood Casey Sheath is the best household lubricant overall... and it smells good too... :D
Tetra Gun Grease is the superior lubricant for manual choke cables... :rolleyes:
I still use WD40 as a gentle cleaner... for a stronger one I reach for my can of ED's Red.......
I do use WD40 to clean the frame and flat black paint on my motorcycle.... :D
April 5, 2003, 12:23 PM
how much is it gonna cost to change my oil in my truck to fp-10 ?? its only 8 qts?? well you guys say its sooooo goood .. :D
April 5, 2003, 08:20 PM
Break Free CLP
Ala Dan, N.R.A. Life Member
April 5, 2003, 09:59 PM
Brad's got it right about WD-40 being kerosene. I didn't know that there was anything else in it though. For what it's worth, check out a product called Tri-flow. It's teflon on a propellant. When the propellant evaporates, it leaves dry teflon behind - which doesn't attract dirt nearly as well as petroleum bases lubes do. 900F
April 5, 2003, 11:30 PM
I thought it was flammable:confused:
April 6, 2003, 12:37 AM
Which 'it', WD-40 or Triflow? I know, being kerosene, that WD-40 is flammable. I'm not sure that the propellant of Tri-flow isn't. But I don't think that the lubricating residue of Tri-flow is. 900F
April 6, 2003, 01:20 AM
The prob with WD 40 as a lube is that it penetrates...enough to get inside a bullet and ruin the powder...
If you are going to use it....make sure none comes in contact with your ammo.
April 6, 2003, 10:27 AM
If you want to learn more about M-Pro-7 gun cleaner and their new lube, you can talk to the president of the company.
Martin Niner, from M-Pro-7, will be on Gun Talk radio today, Sunday, April 6, at 2:00pm Central Time.
www.guntalk.com if you don't get the show on local radio.
He will take questions about gun cleaning. Interesting guy, too.
April 6, 2003, 10:36 AM
Yall quit trashing WD-40.
It works GREAT on my knee. After two surgeries and not much cartilage left in it, it gets to aching when Im running up and downt he Ozarks looking for turkeys.
A quick spary to the knee, rub it in till it dries and FIXED !
Simple, but effective...
April 6, 2003, 09:16 PM
Got rained on turkey hunting this morning. When I got to the truck, I was glad to find a can of WD-40 to wipe down the 870 before casing it.
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