Cosmolene Remover?


August 15, 2007, 07:17 AM
Are there any suggestions for a safe Cosmolene remover? I guess thats what I'm dealing with. I recently purchased an AK-47. It has a lot of this stuff on the inside. I'm tempted to use gas, outside of course, but I'm concerned that gas might harm the finish. The finish is not much to brag about. But I woud like to keep what there is. Thanks for any suggestions.

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August 15, 2007, 07:25 AM
Warm the parts in your oven or with a hair dryer. Wipe off the melted cosmo with Mineral Spirits (cheap in the paint dept at Walmart or Lowes). Use a toothbrush to scrub the tough spots. It won't harm the finish on the metal or wood (unless it's painted).

You don't need a lot of heat to melt cosmoline. I've used a black plastic bag in the sun, put the parts in the car on a warm summer day, or in this heat wave we're currently having, simply laying on my workbench by a window melted the cosmo on two Mosin-Nagants I just bought

August 15, 2007, 08:12 AM
For the summer months I throw the stripped gun in a plastic bag out on the deck to heat up then spray with brake cleaner or powder blast

Dave in PA
August 15, 2007, 08:31 AM
I use Brake cleaner, get it $1.50-$2.00 cheap store brand, DONT get it on the wood if the wood. Make sure you use oil/grease right after you are done cleaning because the brake cleaner will remove ALL of the oils.

August 15, 2007, 09:42 AM
When I got my AK, I removed the parts I could and soaked them in mineral spirits. Be sure to do that with the bolt, at the very least. You don't want dried cosmo messing with the firing pin, causing a slam fire. I then used a paintbrush to apply/brush off cosmoline that was in the receiver and such. I put a little down the bore, then some Hoppes #9, then a boresnake. You'll go through a lot of rags no matter how you do it.

August 15, 2007, 09:43 AM
I've used WD-40 in the past to clean up cosmolene. Works well for me.

August 15, 2007, 09:54 AM
Hot water, Dawn dishwashing soap, and a Brillo pad worked for me.

August 15, 2007, 11:29 AM
I use the oven method and mineral spirits. For the hard to get spots I use a steamer.

August 15, 2007, 12:20 PM
Brake cleaner works great. I used it to clean up my SKS. It strips the cosmoline (and everything else) right off.

August 15, 2007, 12:37 PM
Use of gasoline for cleaning is like playing Russian Roulette with five of six chambers loaded and ranks as one of the absolute worst ideas imaginable.

Gasoline is for engines. When you've seen burn victims that are disfigured for life by using just a "little bit of gas" you'll not even consider such a foolish idea.

Kerosene will do just as well and does not present the problems gas does.

Don't become a contender for the Darwin Awards.


Tully M. Pick
August 15, 2007, 01:42 PM
I put mine in a dishwasher with no detergent for a couple cycles.

August 15, 2007, 01:56 PM
I put mine in a dishwasher with no detergent for a couple cycles. This is not for those of you who are married.

Tully M. Pick
August 15, 2007, 02:06 PM
This is not for those of you who are married.
Yeah, I say no detergent now. I didn't realize what happens when you put regular dish soap in. Or what would happen if you put fabric softener in to kill the suds. She nearly killed me out of hand for that one.

On the plus side, I had the nicest smelling SKS ever.

August 15, 2007, 02:08 PM
Mineral spirits and a couple of old rags/ragged t-shirts...or whatever you happen to have that will work as a rag.

August 15, 2007, 02:13 PM
Wrap it good with paper towels, then put it inside a black plastic trash bag, sit it out in the sun for a day. I did this twice, and ALL the cosmoline is gone from the wood (doesn't seep anymore.).

Rex B
August 15, 2007, 02:21 PM
Take it down to the local coin-op car wash, and work it over good with the high-pressure wand. No kidding. Then wash the water out with WD40, couple of cans of the high-flow variety works best.

Bwana John
August 15, 2007, 02:25 PM
Steam pressure washer.

Or oven cleaner, boiling water, and elbow grease.

August 15, 2007, 03:24 PM
Hot water in the bathtub.

August 15, 2007, 04:02 PM
Mineral spirits

August 15, 2007, 04:18 PM
Also, check out for ideas.


August 15, 2007, 04:28 PM
Simple Green (full strength) followed by an abundance of warm water.

August 15, 2007, 07:21 PM
I'm a vote for the dishwasher,not only does it do a great job one the wood. It also pisses off the wife as well.:cuss: Hee Hee!

August 15, 2007, 07:40 PM
Nothing beats boiling water.

August 15, 2007, 08:01 PM
Hoppes 9 does very well, but mineral spirits ( a component of Hoppes 9) is cheaper in cans.

August 15, 2007, 08:33 PM
Mineral spirits, brake cleaner, sun, oven (low heat), warm water, wd 40, basically anything that has petroleum distillates will take it off. For the bolt and small parts you can boil it. It will stink up the house.

August 15, 2007, 10:01 PM
Another vote for BOILING WATER ... it melts the cosmo, and, because the metal gets so hot from the water, it evaporates all the water off in a few seconds. Wipe it down with some CLP, bingo ...

August 15, 2007, 10:01 PM
Time and a lot of patience.

August 15, 2007, 10:16 PM
There must be different types of cosmiline out there becuase I never had any luck with the boiling water (other than making a nice mess and taking a long time)

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