Whats a good copper solvent?


February 16, 2008, 11:05 PM
I just bought a new 12FLV 22-250 and want to keep the barrel in tip top shape as it should be a tack driver. i have not shot it yet as i am waiting for my Weaver Grand Slam 6x20 to show up on monday. Any way what is a good copper solvent. I have used sweets 62 but am out of it and have a new jar of gunslick copper solvent. I have not tried it yet however. What are your thoughts

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February 16, 2008, 11:07 PM
i use sweets on my mosin and it works great, but also use my hops copper solvent in everything.

February 16, 2008, 11:20 PM
For Copper I use Sweets exclusively.

Ol` Joe
February 16, 2008, 11:43 PM
Wipe out.

Don't Tread On Me
February 17, 2008, 12:06 AM

Stuff should be a chemical weapon.

February 17, 2008, 12:18 AM
I prefer Barnes, but the Gunslick stuff dissolves copper the way you want it. I used it to break in a new Rem 700 barrel in January. It works perfectly good, even though Barnes is stronger and works faster.

Brand new barrel? Go to the Ed Brown rifle website http://www.edbrown.com/cgi-bin/start.cgi/customrifles.htm and scroll down to the bottom. Click on the button that says View/Print Owner's Manual. At the end of the manual it has a procedure for rifle barrel break in. It will make the barrel as accurate as that particular barrel can be. Of course, some barrels are more accurate than others. But that break-in procedure will make sure yours gets the best accuracy it is capable of producing.

Be sure to have at least two boxes of ammo. The procedure is a pain and it takes 40 to 50 rounds, but it works.

35 Whelen
February 17, 2008, 02:02 AM
If this doesn't sell you, nothing will!


i ordered some from Midway after seeing this test.

February 17, 2008, 02:14 AM
I always question "tests" done by the company that sells the product. I have several bottles of copper solvent including KG-12, Sweets, and CR-10.

Personally I use those in no particular order and I don't notice a huge difference. They all seem to work for me.

February 17, 2008, 06:53 AM
I rather like Barnes. Works well, decent price, and it stinks so bad you just know it's working.

35 Whelen
February 17, 2008, 10:27 AM
<QUOTE> I always question "tests" done by the company that sells the product. I have several bottles of copper solvent including KG-12, Sweets, and CR-10.

Personally I use those in no particular order and I don't notice a huge difference. They all seem to work for me. <QUOTE>

The test was performed by a distributor. If I were a distributor, I would want to sell what works. Wouldn't you? I would assume that is why they performed the test. And actually, it's a very simple test. Surely someone on the boards who had a few different types of copper solvent could try it themselves. I only have one brand at the time, but as soon as my KG-12 comes in I may try it.

February 17, 2008, 11:04 AM
I think ammonia is the ingredient in all these solvents that dissolves copper.

The best copper removal agent isn't chemical in nature--JB Bore Cleaner, a mild abrasive.

February 17, 2008, 11:11 AM
Correct. But any abrasive will also be abrasive to steel. And because every single stroke of a long, flexible rod cannot be perfectly straight and even (not in my hands anyway ;) ) I avoid the use of abrasives unless there is no other choice, if only to avoid accelerated wear at the chamber mouth/throat and crown.

February 17, 2008, 11:30 AM
Sweets 7.62 bore solvent works great and is used by many ppc shooters ect. Also JB's bore cleaner works well too (after the sweets) Some #9 works on carbon fouling but not on copper.

February 17, 2008, 12:12 PM
Some #9 works on carbon fouling but not on copper.

Sure it does. Leave it in 10-15min-->green/blue patches.

50 Shooter
February 17, 2008, 03:49 PM
Boretech's Eliminator copper solvent, no ammonia in it so it's safe to use inside your house. http://www.boretech.com/introducing.htm

February 17, 2008, 08:59 PM
Markbo......this is why they make a bore guide. I use JB's when I think my service rifle needs it and have not noticed any decrease in points.

February 18, 2008, 08:50 AM
Guys, at benchrest matches,the predominant solvent is Butch's Bore Shine. And we like 'em clean and shiny. If I was going to pick the _only_ solvent I'd get to use, it'd be the one.

February 18, 2008, 10:48 AM
50 Shooter - that boretech looks interesting. How does it do on everyting else? Thinking along the lines of lead and carbon deposits on revolvers.

P-32: Absolutely correct. And if more people used them and knew how to use them correctly it would never be an issue... but I have seen it many, many times as I am sure you have.

bogie - I use Butch's Bore Shine almost exclusively, except when obvious copper deposits are the culprit, then I use Sweets. Overall it is a great cleaner, but I have never noticed it being THAT good on copper. Then again the vast majority of my shooting is lead bullets. Extended range sessions with rifles typically is only testing loads.

What do you find at matches mostly anyway? Carbon buildup first or copper? I would think in benchrest guns that are highly polished copper would have a hard time building up unless you are at an extended shooting session and can't stop to clean. My experience with copper is almost exclusively with AR's.

February 18, 2008, 11:27 AM
It's a mix, really... You'll get a carbon ring ahead of the chamber, along with some copper plating. This is with select match barrels, with under a thousand rounds through them. Keep in mind that we're spankin' the things pretty hard - A 6ppc pushing a 68 grain bullet at 3450 fps - do not try that in a "factory" rifle like a Sako...

It's amazing what you'll see with a bore scope. You get most of the nastiness at the chamber end, but you'll get copper all the way...

If Butch's shows green, that means it's doing copper.

I tend to use plenty when brushing, and let it set 15 minutes or so.

February 18, 2008, 11:38 AM
I use sweets alot but recently found Gunslick Copper kleenz...it has a pleasant smell and doesn't seem to work at first but when the patches dry some they ar e a great blue color

February 18, 2008, 01:14 PM
I now use Montana Extremes Bore Solvent. While working on a buddy's 243 that was fouling badly I put a wet patch in and let it set for a few minutes and it came out as blue as fountain pen ink. (for those of you that remember what that was):)

Anyway it works great.

February 18, 2008, 04:10 PM
I agree with tjj Montana Extremes is good stuff on badly plated bores. The smell however limits it use to outdoors only. In the past I have used non-sudsing ammonia with good results.

May 13, 2008, 08:31 AM
I know this is an older thread but I recently had to remove several layers of copper fouling in a couple of rifles and tried several products after recomendations on this site.

I originally used Hoppes Benchrest copper solvent. It did o.k. for mild fouling if I left the bore wet overnight. But it seemed to build up faster than I could take it out in my .223, which seems to foul pretty quickly.

I tried CR-10 from Barnes, wow, this stuff will clear your sinuses and your copper fouling really well. I always thought soak time was needed for proper disolve time, but you can only use this product for 15 minutes before you must attend to it. I wore some rubber gloves with this as it is a very strong ammonia based solvent. It worked very well.

Butches Bore Shine. It worked almost exactly as the CR-10, without the time limitations according to the directions. Anything that comes in a glass bottle and then packaged in a plastic container for fumes must be good is what the guy at the sportsmans warehouse told me, he was right. I put the gloves on again for this one. This product worked as well as CR-10 with a few less limitations (time).

Wipe out foaming. This is something I will certainly buy again, it worked great, without dealing without the awful fumes too. Very minimal work on my end, just let the foam do the work. At first the can seemed over presurized and I got foam all over the place. But after I got a good seal around the nozzle and got a feel for the "trigger", all was well. Great product I will definately be using this again.

Bore Tech Elemininator by gunslick. I bought this at the same time as the wipeout because I wasnted to go home with at least one that would work. This product, IIRC, was not ammonia based and not toxic and I had doubts. This worked as good as the wipe out. Same amounnt of effort to work with too. It was a more cost effective purchase, bigger can for not much more than the wipe out. Worked great. I will be using this again too.

Last but absolutely not least, Sweets 7.62. It was similar to the CR-10, and was very effective on the copper fouling. It was also limited by working time, but like CR-10, does exactly what its supposed to in that time frame. If I get some tough to remove fouling that the foams wont get the first time, this will be my go to black skull and crossbones bottle. I wore the gloves with this one too, as it seemed pretty toxic like the other ammonia based solvents.

Maybee this will help someone who was in my situation who is looking for a copper solvent and thinking of trying a new product. Everybody has their favorite method and product, and this is what worked on my rifles. All in all, I would say that all the products except the Hoppes Benchrest (because it takes soo long IMO), are good recommendations. I think the foam products are what I will continue with as they dont require a lot of work to use, no fumes, I can soak the bore overnight, and no spills to worry about.

May 13, 2008, 08:59 AM
hoppes or shooters choice for me.

Savage Shooter
May 13, 2008, 08:59 AM
I have a savage 12fv and all i trust is hoppes #9

May 13, 2008, 09:12 AM
Another Butch's Bore Shine user here....

May 13, 2008, 10:26 AM
I like Sweets for tough deposits but normally I use Gunslick CopperKleenz. I doesn't appear to work but when the patches dry they are bright blue

uk roe hunter
May 13, 2008, 10:33 AM
I used butches for ages, then i changed to forrest bore foam. I can't recomend it highly enough. wait until you clean a barell with it after using butches. it is an eye openner


May 13, 2008, 11:31 AM
Savage Shooter - I have the same rifle in .223, it fouls after 50 rounds and is the reason of my quest for a good copper solvent/foam. Im jealous that Hoppes works for you, after letting it sit overnight it still wouldnt get the copper out.

May 13, 2008, 11:34 AM
Boretech Eliminator

May 13, 2008, 05:17 PM
Those of you who use Hoppe's No. 9 exclusively and shoot copper bullets really owe it to yourself to try anything else. Don't get me wrong-I'm a hardcore Hoppe's user from way back, but for lead and copper it doesn't measure up to the dedicated solvents for those metals. I just tried Butch's Bore Shine on my Savage 12VLP, and man, you should have seen how much copper I got out of that bore.

After reading this thread, I stumbled upon this review/test of the previously mentioned KG-12 and how it compares to the better known products; I have no experience with this product, but it certainly looks to be effective:

May 13, 2008, 05:24 PM
Shooters choice works for me.

May 17, 2008, 04:38 PM
Another one here for Butch's Bore Shine. I've heard of people cutting it with Kroils...haven't tried that yet.

May 17, 2008, 05:09 PM
cp1969 is correct. Ammonia is the agent that does the copper removal. I work in a metallurgical laboratory in a copper producing facility and we us ammonium persulphate to etch our copper based samples. This is a very strong alkali that attacks copper. Any of the solvents that have ammonia as an ingredient will work well. Some may have to soak longer than others to get satisfactory results.

May 17, 2008, 07:06 PM
For copper removal I use either Sweets 7.62 or Barnes CR-10.

Hoppes9 is my every day bore cleaner. It will take copper out if you leave it inside soaking for awhile. Just not as good as the others for that.

May 17, 2008, 09:48 PM
personally, i use __________, but it really doesn't matter.

as per danjet500's advice, and others before him, ammonia is what eats the copper up. if your flavor has ammonia, it'll work.



an FFL who dealt out of his house in this area used to shoot 1911 competitively at camp perry for about 10 years. back when he did so, lead bullets were all they used. he kept a jar of mercury to soak the bbl in overnight, and after letting it hang an hour or so to let the excess drain back into the jar, he'd run a brush through it. really works, and much easier on the rifling.

keep the brush wrapped up in plastic, or in a jar as a designated mercury brush. wear gloves when handling mercury. spray bbl with cleaning agent over a container to catch remaining mercury. shoot first round UPWIND from firearm at next outing, NOT indoors. application of heat to mercury will make it airborne, and easily inhaled.




XD-40 Shooter
May 17, 2008, 09:58 PM
I just ordered 2 bottles of Montana Xtreme copper killer, 4oz bottle, on sale from Midwayusa for $3 each. I haven't used it yet, but I'm sure it will eat the copper.:D

I also have the Montana Xtreme bore solvent on hand, I agree, that stuff works, but the vapors will clean out your sinuses, lol.

May 17, 2008, 10:21 PM
I have been using Tetra for years.

May 18, 2008, 12:45 AM
In bolt guns, the Milfoam (Forrest, back when a BR shooter turned me on to it) products which are branded/marketed under Hoppes and Gunslick, work best. Check the labels. I have used all that other stinky mess and all I use is the foam now. Saving the liver and kidneys to be killed by something else. Most of the other brands mentioned have been sitting on my shelf for a few years. The foam stuff just flat gets it done. I'll leave it sit for hours and it strips carbon and copper fouling out of the bore effortlessly, no scrubbing/brushing (which has probably damaged more bores than chemicals). I fill the bore up 4-5 times, patch it out and no noticeable carbon deposits ahead of the throat either. It has never done a thing to damage a barrel and the barrels are spotless.

M-Pro 7 products also marketed under Hoppes Elite are made by Pantheon Chemical. I have used the standard cleaners with very good success on many a rifle. Even on an old M1, it stripped it down to the bare metal removing all remnants of cosmo etc. and carbon doesn't stand a chance. It does not work all that well on copper but I'm going to try their copper gel in my gas guns to see how it does as I don't like the foam in the gas systems. By the way these cleaners will attack a wood finish so I cover the stock with a towel.

May 18, 2008, 12:51 AM
Who uese the Birchwood Casey Bore Scrubber 2 in 1 bore cleaner ?
My groups have went down hill.I went all over my Rifle,why is this happening,I thought well maybe its my scope.I just couldnt figure it out,went through all sorts of thoughts,I had did that break in sesson,last fall.did the cleaning,shot it the way they said to do to break in the barrel,did it all.in one day,but my group went down hill.I went out today,it wont group.maybe softball size group,I took this rifle to the work bench,Here it took me 2 hours. to clean the copper out of the barrle,when i thought i got it all.I put another wet patch down it,let it sit for 15 mins,then i used a brush,then patch after patch,untill I finely stoped getting the blue color on my patches,I neevr would have guessed, that i would of had so my copper fouling in this rifle.Now I cant wait to get back to the range to try it out.
I dont know if my bore cleaner is making it,I may have to look for something dif,

May 18, 2008, 01:02 AM
I tried something new recently that worked great - Hoppes Elite Copper Terminator. It's non-amonia and strong stuff. Would tell you more about it, but it's eaten the label off it's bottle.

May 18, 2008, 01:24 AM
this birchwood stuff has a lot of amonia in it,
I will hit the range tomorrow.I need to know if the copper fouling is the problem i m havng keeping a group.This rifle used to shoot 1/2 min before all this fouling,And the next time I clean it,I'll soak the bore,and let it sit for 20 mins,then run patches,but for 2 hours to get it clean,is a tad much,

Ol` Joe
May 18, 2008, 10:44 AM
Wipe Out is now makeing a product called "Patch Out" it`s supposed to be the same as Wipe Out but, you apply it the same as other cleaners and don`t have the possible mess some find with the foam.


I have`nt tried it yet, but I plan on it when the can of Wipe Out I`ve got is empty. So far the foam has been the easiest cleaner I`ve used, and works as well or better then any other, except for removeing carbon (JB or Rem Clean is the best for this). I always follow a clean barrel with Butches after useing Wipe Out and find a little more carbon comes out. I think this is from the heavier build up in the throat that needs a bit more work then the rest of the bore.

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