Damage Mitigation - Help Me


Wes Janson
November 5, 2007, 10:46 PM
Okay, so I've been an enormous frigging idiot. The week before last I took my new M1A out to the range to see what accuracy I could get from it, and a friend of mine gave me some of his ammo to try out. He told me it was surplus, but didn't mention that it was corrosive. I, being a complete imbecile, shot like normal, but didn't clean when I got home, because I was extremely pressed for time. I was out of town for the past week, and just got back yesterday. This morning I decided to pull out the gas plug for the first time, and when I did I saw lots of greenish-blue patches inside the plug and piston. Pulled back the bolt, looked into the chamber, and orange rust covered nearly half the interior.

At this point in time, what should I do? I'm pulling it apart right now and trying to clean up the rust, but don't know how bad it really is in the bore. The bolt and receiver do not appear to have been affected. Assuming I can clean the surface rust off, use corrosive ammo cleaning procedures, and get it squeaky clean, how badly am I screwed? Is it safe to fire? How badly is the accuracy likely to decrease by? Will having Springfield re-barrel the rifle fix things, or will it likely need new gas system components as well?

If you enjoyed reading about "Damage Mitigation - Help Me" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!
November 5, 2007, 10:50 PM
Clean it, lube it, shoot it and see. It's frustrating and makes you want to cry. You may have no problems, so don't panic yet. Report back. Good luck.

November 5, 2007, 11:11 PM
Greenish-blue is more likely copper fouling. A GI barrel will be more resistant to rust than will a Springfield Arms barrel. It's probably okay. The chamer area isn't critical like the barrel will be.

November 5, 2007, 11:15 PM
Were it a few months, I'd be worried, but two weeks isn't going to kill a service rifle. Maybe a match rifle. wrap some #0000 steel wool around a 22cal nylon bore brush and have at it with some hoppes lubricating oil. 15-20 passes and that rust will be almost entirely gone. Clean as normal and inspect again. If there's still some red on a white cloth patch, wash repeat rinse. Use a patch of the steel wool on the rusted internals. Careful with any part that's blued, but then again, the rust has already hit that and gotten past it.

Steel wool, oil, elbow grease. The only way to get rid of rust.

Wes Janson
November 5, 2007, 11:35 PM
What I'm most concerned with at the moment is the chamber...I've made 4 or 5 passes with a chamber brush, with and without patches, with and without CLP, and still I can clearly see rust blooms on one side. What's the best way to clear that out?

November 5, 2007, 11:39 PM
Get a little bottle of bluing and rust remover, and CAREFULLY run a patch through and let her sit before running a nylon brush through.

November 5, 2007, 11:55 PM
When i was getting the rust out of my .22s that had sat in my attic for in the area of 20 years i used a graphite-based penetrant that is intended for cars. I couldn't remove all of the the rust but after sending about 200 rounds downrange i couldn't tell where the rust was. So basically after you shoot some rounds it should smooth out most of the rust and pitting in the barrel.

November 6, 2007, 12:40 AM
You laid out all those bucks for a new M1A and didn't bother to check what kind of ammo you were shooting through it? :eek:

I am not aware of ANY .308 surplus ammo that is corrosive...anyway, isn't your barrel chrome lined?

I seriously doubt you have damaged your barrel...

November 6, 2007, 12:50 AM
wes, no doubt about it ....... the rifle is trashed. No need to worry though. Just send it to me and you won't have to worry about that nasty ole' rust bucket anymore :)

November 6, 2007, 01:16 AM
Is it wrong that the fastest, most effective way I have removed that light, fuzzy surface rust in bores is by shooting a few times??:D After a few rounds, the bore has no rust left.

If you enjoyed reading about "Damage Mitigation - Help Me" here in TheHighRoad.org archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join TheHighRoad.org today for the full version!