Does Bore Butter Rust?


Elbert P . Suggins
October 16, 2008, 03:22 PM
This has probably been answered in other threads and am sorry to post this question if that is the case. But after cleaning my BP I have been finishing with a clean patch of bore butter down the barrel and cylinder. Is this wrong and am I looking at a rust problem. I haven't seen it in 2 years so is it something that others have seen to exist? And if it is true what are you using besides petroleum base products to coat the bore?

If you enjoyed reading about "Does Bore Butter Rust?" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
October 16, 2008, 03:34 PM
i dont know if it was the bor butter but i had my 45 inline breech rust shut and rust in the barrel, it may been due to the bore butter an maybe not but now i just use rem oil an it works fine.... its called bore butter 1000 cause it takes at least 1000 shots for any "seasoning" to take effect... just what a friend told me anyone, else hear this before?:scrutiny:

October 16, 2008, 04:18 PM
You 'season' a cast iron skillet. Rifle barrels are steel, not cast iron. Bore Butter does not 'season' a barrel.

It also does not rust, or cause rust. However, as a rust preventative it does leave a bit to be desired. If there is any water left in the barrel when you apply the Bore Butter it will likely remain in place and cause rust. Bore Butter won't replace that. It does not displace water. It's sole rust preventative feature is that it coats the steel to prevent oxygen from reaching the surface; if there is water present it can prevent the Bore Butter from coating the surface in that area and thus rust can occur.

I've used Bore Butter for years with no ill effects, that is, no significant or discernible rust. However, I've seen cases where rust occurred with other people's guns. In those cases they've all said they took no extra effort to remove water beyond running a dry patch after cleaning; I think that was not sufficient and the Bore Butter was thus applied on a wet surface and thus was not fully effective.

BTW, I now use Ballistol full strength and am pleased with the results. Mineral oil based solvents such as Ballistol and Butch's Bore Shine do not exhibit the problems associated with petroleum based oils.

Others use olive oil or other vegetable oils; these are short term however as they can turn rancid over the long term.

October 16, 2008, 04:55 PM
My experience is the same as Mykeal. Ballistol is my answer, it is so hydrophilic that it will capture any latent moisture. I was never completely happy with borebutter I would rinse my guns with alcohol after cleaning, letting them throughly dry and then coat with borebutter only to find them slightly rusty when I inspected them later. That has not happened with Ballistol.

October 16, 2008, 05:12 PM
All of the barrels i stored with bore butter always were rusted within a few days. Switched to rem oil and no problem-o.

I only use bore butter on my shooting patches for the traditional rifles.

Elbert P . Suggins
October 16, 2008, 07:16 PM
Ballistol must be a product that you have to order because I have not seen it on any BP shelves including Cabelas. I can't give up on Bore Butter entirely because the odor of it is intoxicating to me. In fact I can get cross-eyed over the green stuff in the BB tube.

October 16, 2008, 07:27 PM
Put the Bore Butter behind both ears, and for good measure smear a little Gorilla Grease on your fingers - she won't be able to leave you alone.

Ballistol also has a unique 'fragrance', but it doesn't draw raves at the cosmetics counter. Many mail order houses sell it, and some well equipped local gun shops. I'm sure I've seen it at Cabela's in Dundee, but I know it wasn't there the last time I stopped. It's also used by many fishermen to keep rods and reels working, so you might find it at the local hardware or rod/reel shop.

October 16, 2008, 10:44 PM
This was the first website to come up on Google:

I don't know anything about them, just the first on the list.

October 16, 2008, 10:55 PM
i jus put the thing in about seasoning to see if anyone else heard about it taking a thousand shots or more.. an i probably didnt dry the barrel well enough to make bore butter work correctly lol anyhow, just a few patches, rem oil works good an i wipe it off before i shoot so for none ill effects.:cool:

October 17, 2008, 05:38 AM is a good company I get my Ballistol & a few other things from them from time to time.

I've never seasoned a bore with Bore Butter & only used it as a bullet/patch lube but otherwise it's not much for anything else.

If you really want your rifle or pistol clean & know it's moisture free, use some WD40 in & around it & wipe it down then lube as usual the WD40 will displace the moisture along with dry patches & once you use your preferred lube it shouldn't rust due to moisture left behind.

BTW I'm one that'll use Virgin Olive Oil as a parts lube & rust preventive if I know that within 7-20 days I'll be shooting that piece but otherwise I'll use Ballistol as my parts lube & Rust preventive.

October 17, 2008, 05:40 AM
duplicate please delete

October 17, 2008, 05:41 AM
Please delete, #@%& connection

October 17, 2008, 07:43 AM
wash your barrel out with very hot waterand some bubble bath soap dry out with a swab then spray wd40 inside ,dry out again and use a good quality gun oil on a patch to preserve the bore .

Mike 56
October 17, 2008, 11:02 AM
I had no luck with bore butter. Started using W-D40 after drying then apply a thin coat of bore butter no more rust.


Elbert P . Suggins
October 17, 2008, 01:32 PM
Warder, can you still use gun oil as the final application because it is known and been said that petroleum based products are not conducive to good cleaning in BP weapons because of what occurs after running BP thru it?

October 17, 2008, 01:51 PM
hi as long as you clean the bore really well with water and mild soap , dry it well swab with wd40 and then, i use army light machine gun oil in the bore .i have a harpers ferry musket that sits in the safe most of the time and after months the bore is still shining and lubed not dried up .a lot of guys over here use 50-50 car anti freeze and water to clean their bore then dry and qil as i said no problems at all .Dont forget your not cleaning with oil your storing with oil .

October 18, 2008, 03:45 PM
I also use military machine gun oil in my bore for storage, never any problem and it's cheep.

October 18, 2008, 08:52 PM
The issue isn't the use of petroleum based oils during storage - they're fine for that. The issue is having the oil in the bore and then shooting the gun with black powder. That's when the problem occurs. You can certainly use petroleum base oils for storage, just be sure to thoroughly clean it out with soap/water, alcohol, or bp solvent before firing it.

October 19, 2008, 05:32 AM
the only way i clean mine out before fireing is with a dry patch i've been doing this for nigh on 30 years and never had a problem as a matter of fact if i was honest i have never even heard of some of the things talked about here using petr. based oil,i still have some of my guns from when i started and can honestly say the bores in them are great.GOOD cleaning after use is the most important thing

October 21, 2008, 11:30 PM
if its gonna sit season to season like rifles do at times ballistol is the best i've found and works well for about 6 months at a pop, then you must reapply. bore butter works great for sealing chambers and lube for patches. i've used it before to store rifles by adding a thick coat to the bore but it doesnt hold up for nearly as long as ballistol. where they came up with the "seasoning" stuff i dunno but it's bs.

October 22, 2008, 02:33 AM
Well now I gotta add a lil' sumfin to that...seasoning ain't BS. It was done is done and can be done.
To season a barrel is to wipe it clean of fouling with patch and brush and load it back up, and not to scrub the bore with hot soapy water. It was done by using Bear grease or lard goose grease or beaver fat you choose. But they did not scrub with soap, solvent or anything...and barrels became naturaly seasoned. Just like you treat an iron skillet...don't add water.
Some of you must be Historians or have tried that while in Camp hunting or Rondy...I am quite surprized.

Oh and you can do it with Bore Butter but get the moisture out first or BB will seal that rinse water in and it surely will rust in a closet or safe dehumidifier or not.


Lt. B
October 22, 2008, 06:43 AM
I would recomend Getting a copy of TC,s instructional DVD. Some good info about all this as well as some good hunting videos. It covers seasoning, bore butter, WD 40, and all kinds of good stuff. Just my 2 cents

October 22, 2008, 07:40 AM
Well, there's a bit of a difference between the metal in an iron skillet and a rifle bore.

Must be I don't understand metallurgy and the characteristics of iron and steel as well as I used to. Would someone care to explain what 'seasoning' is and what the physical process is? Seeing as how TC's video doesn't go into that...(by the way, they sell the stuff - is it possible they are taking a little marketing license in the video, hmmmm - no, they wouldn't do that, would they?).

Elbert P . Suggins
October 22, 2008, 09:50 AM
I remember in the early fifties when growing up that mom would always use here cooking grease which most of the time was bacon grease to season her pans which were iron. Dad bought her some new fangled steel pans and she tried to make him take them back to the store six months later because she couldn't get them to season properly and she went back to her old stuff. She said it was easier to control temperature and have better cooking results and also easier to clean. Besides, that's the way her grandma did it. I'm guessing that iron is more porous then steel thus allowing Crisco, BB, or whatever to permeate more so. Wouldn't the early gun barrels been made of iron which seasoning could have been accomplished? Just don't know!

October 22, 2008, 02:57 PM
as far as i knew it was just to keep metal slicker, like before mentioned.... easier to clean less friction all around.... i wonder if you could get enough oil/bore butter permeated into the barrel to semi waterproof it:rolleyes:... or some of that waterproofing stuff for tents lol:evil:

Lt. B
October 22, 2008, 09:29 PM
Well lemesee....When we talk about heat and metal of any kind we seem to talk of "breakin" or "seasoning". Hell..we could even use these terms when talking about a woman but Im wandering now.
Stainless steel cooking pans without a doubt require sesoning. Ask any professional cook. An aluminum softball bat requires seasoning. Not with Bore butter but Google Rolling a bat and you will be fasinated....I was. Then we can think about harmonics of a barrel. I think I can embrace "seasoning" a barrel with Bore Butter, Even if TC does make it. Im kind of funny about using Johnsons own blend of 2 stroke motor oil in my 97 150 Oceanrunners. Eleven years old and theyve always brought me home. Is it the oil or something else? I dunno but what Im doing works so Ill keep doing it. Kind of like the way you load your rifle. You get a routine down that gives you the groups you want and you keep on doing it. Hmmmm....women.... anybody wanna talk about women?

October 22, 2008, 10:33 PM
The steel used in modern firearms well not be seasoned or permeated by Bore Butter. It's snake oil. Bore butter is a great bullet lube, and keeps the fouling soft so it's much easier to clean, but permeate the steel at the molecular level....Bah ha ha ha ha.
That's just to funny.

October 23, 2008, 02:33 AM
For the Divine Creator's sake, Steel is made with Iron, no? Metals all have porosities, yes? Do the math try it if you need proof or jus' keep scrubbin' yer barrels with Hot soapy water of solvent of your choice.
Perhaps this is jus' sumthin' some don't know...well I jus' told ya...
If that ain't good enough buy a book or surf the net cause I could care whether you "Believe It Or Not".
I already know :O)


English Bob
October 23, 2008, 06:08 AM
I've been using 'Bore Butter' for a good while without getting any rust in the barrel of my BPCRs. Maybe I've just been dead lucky and got all the hot rinse water out before adding it. I never actually realised that it could hold the water in..I'll be taking even more care from now on to get it out before putting the yellow stuff in.

I also tend to apply it while the barrel is still warm, maybe that's a helping factor to get it properly covering to stop rust. I have to admit though that I wouldn't consider using it for any long term storage.

As for 'seasoning' the barrel, well I know that's what the old timers reckoned they were doing with sperm oil and the like. I never really thought that much about it until reading this thread. I do find that with the bore butter I no longer bother with a 'fouling shot' as the first shot is usually well withing the group after the string of thirteen as per MLAIC type rules.


October 23, 2008, 11:21 AM
Interesting thread glad you asked Elbert. I have been using crisco mostly, I shoot fairly often and clean my Walker very thouroghly after every trip to the range. ( I do Love shooting that thing) My cleaning always involves baking it in the oven on low heat and then applying copious amonts of crisco to the hot metal. I have experienced no problems with rusting but the crisco sometimes does get gummy and causes difficulty in rotating the cylinder. I raised this problem on the walker thread and was advised to try bore butter instead which I did and had a satisfactory result. I think now though I'll give the Ballistrol a try. should I apply it to the metal hot as I did the crisco or just room temp?

October 23, 2008, 12:32 PM
you can just clean the weapon as you normally would then coat it with ballistol. you can also coat the weapon prior to cleaning, let it sit a bit and it will loose up the fouling and it makes it a breeze to clean. no heat needed...

October 23, 2008, 12:37 PM
Thanks Ghost I'll get some Ballistrol before my next trip to the range

Elbert P . Suggins
October 23, 2008, 01:14 PM
Well, I saw the question about BB on another BP site, so thought I would ask it on this one. Got me concerned because I put mine away with the bores and cylinders swabbed with BB after I get them dry with a hair dryer and I just haven't seen any corrosion or rust of any kind. I can see how it would seal in moisture but I have always tried to apply it after things were dry. I have to admit I do have one BP CB that I have used as an experiment on corrosion and haven't visually seen any sign of it yet. That being a Uberti 5 and 1\2 58 Remmie which I shoot all the time and clean once a month. I take the pin out once in a while and wipe clean and swab with BB and shoot some more. It always fires, and I mean always. Not as accurate as 2 Pietta 7 1\2 Remmies that I use for CAS but better balanced and just fun to sit and fondle while watching a classic on the Western Channel. I know it is firearm abuse and I should be prosecuted but maybe because I live in Idaho and humidity is not like the South or Coastal areas I can get away with it. And I always bring it in the house and never leave overnite in a rig. I only use Goex BP which should be the most corrosive but just haven't seen it. Remember, I am not lazy, this is only a test. But it has relieved my anxiety of cleaning within a few hours after usage. God, I just love these things. Like I said once before on a post. There is nothing like standing out on your deck at 5 in the morning just as the sun is poking thru and settin six of them holes off and the smell of that smoke as it hangs on a windless morning with an inversion in full bloom. And I know what inversions are because I am a crop duster and have been since 1983. Now I am just rambling, sorry.

October 23, 2008, 02:45 PM
Elbert, I now use the BB on my Walker it's the only BP I have a soon to be remedied problem, I hope. Like i said I always bake mine before applying the BB or Crisco so that should take care of any moisture. I live in San Antonio which is pretty humid and so far no sign of rust at all. As far as inversions and cropdusting I was an Ag Pilot for 7 years before moving to Alaska to fly,did my dusting mostly in Louisiana, Arkansas and Texas and the souteast. I quit dustin' in '77 yep I am a bit of an old timer, LOL so I I hope the folks here will take that into consideration before condeming MY rambling.

October 23, 2008, 05:19 PM
Just ordered some Ballistol from Brownells. Be advised, you will be charged a hazmat fee for shipping. Still seems worth it from reading all these posts on the product.

December 5, 2008, 04:40 PM
I saw this video on some rifle slings on youtube ( that had to remove rust. They have an organic rust remover you can use it on guns. I never tried it, but it looks like it can help.

December 5, 2008, 04:59 PM
i am using it to store my barrel with, twice for just over 5 months at a crack. both times when i cleaned the b.b. out of the barrel prior to shooting, there was no evidence of rust either time. so i guess it works, at least for me. i have tried using it to lube the sabots i am using also. it does make them start easier, but by the time the sabot is 1/3rd the way down the barrel, it has all been wiped off the sabot. some day, i will rough up the outside of some sabots so they will hold the b.b. and i will do a chrono test to see if there is any difference. but it WILL be in warmer weather than this! it has been 14-18 degrees all day( i hunted out in it), and i am already tired of it.

December 5, 2008, 08:10 PM
over kill it

Yep i over kill it. i used to use bore butter to lube everything but then i got a rust spot. as what was mentioned. if the gun is warm and dry all the way then its ok. but if it is at all wet or moisutre wet then thats where you will get the rust spot. so now i just stick to the basics and use gun oil. and i oil the heck out of everything when i know they are not going to be used. then when i want to use them i take out some alcohal and some patches run a couple down the barrel and then shoot of some caps. then im good to go. ya as far as alcohal. JACK DANIELS. Yep has never let me down.

December 6, 2008, 12:26 PM
I would like to take on the 'Seasoning'.

I have used cast iron cooking pans like Lodge brand, long enough that cooking with oils and fats have gone right thru the porous cast iron.

The bottoms of these pans are sort of greasey to feel, and the cooking surfaces shine. These pans may be wiped clean with a paper towel and might be washed in plain hot water with NO Soap, and most certainly no detergents!

Water won't touch the iron on a well seasoned pan, and water simply beads up just like it does on a freshly waxed car...

Older real antique guns were made if a different metal, and most of the time out of what ever a barrel maker had on hand, and I mean when a smith hammer formed and welded a strip of metal part iron and part steel around a mandrel.

I can't say for sure, but I bet some of these barrels were sort of porous. So bear grease and oils like it may have soaked deeply into the metals.

Todays modern steels are not much like then, and most certainly are not like cast iron pans, but still I believe because there are open pours some oils like bore butter may penatrate maybe to a depth of 0.010" maybe.. I can't prove that.

But anyway, I think you can build a 'Seasoning' in the grooves and on the lands that is smoother than bare steel, and fill open pours, if you use a product like bore butter, bear grease, racoon fat, beaver fat and the like.

Once there IS this 'Seasoning' / Patena plain hot water shouldn't remove all of it. When I clean my BP guns I use hotter water than my skin can stand, and in the hopes the heat will drive off excess moisture.

After cleaning I add natural oils of what ever I have on hand, making sure there is no salt added! In a days time I check the guns for signs of water by wiping them down inside and out again. And once more in a week.

After that, use them or not, they get attention once each month.

So far I have never heard of not using water, and that idea scares me.. But perhaps it is possible to dry mop and brush a gun totally clean, and I would like to know more on that idea.

December 6, 2008, 04:30 PM
Only lube that sees my barrels is bore butter thats on a prelubed patch. then for storage its Rem oil with teflon.

December 7, 2008, 08:00 AM
Another vote for Ballistol . I have been using it for years and I never looked back.Good stuff.

December 7, 2008, 01:48 PM
right, water won't touch a well seasoned iron skillet. when you clean that skillet you just wipe it out. as most of use know cast iron is rather porous and thus soaks up grease etc. heat kills the bacteria rather than soap. you don't clean them with a copper or brass bore brush either. it also takes a long time to get a well seasoned skillet.

steel while it may hold a very small amount of grease or bore butter will never season like cast iron. it will never hold enough grease to truly season the barrel. every time you run a bore brush down the barrel you will scratch up whatever grease you have in barrel anyway. maybe some folks don't use bore brushes to clean up their barrels, i don't know. i never use water to clean mine.
December 7, 2008, 02:33 PM
I use windshield washer (The blue Stuff) to clean, and WD-40 to oil. No
problems in 45 years of doing this way. I always clean at the range.

December 7, 2008, 08:24 PM
Oddly perhaps I don't use a bore brush on long BP guns. I use a worm wrapped in jute twine, plain hot water, and save the jute to dry. Then it gets used again, and when it can't be used anymore I dry it and add it to my tinder box..

The barrels are hard to pull on my long guns, so I don't other than once a year.

The first step to my cleanings is to stick a feather in the vent, after the rod and lock is pulled. Then with a tea pot I pack, I fill the bore to with in 1/2 " with water that was just boiling. I use a wine bottle real cork made to fit which ever gun and it is in that guns bag, and stopper the bore.

I wait for the barrel to get hot, and find a tree limb to hang the gun by the trigger guard. When the barrel is hot I hold a rag to the feather and remove it.

A drop of water comes out on my rag, and then I pull the cork and black water comes out.

Then a dry mop on the worm of jute goes in and I repeat that till the bore is clean and dry.. I can tell when it is clean with a white cotton patch, and the patch is dry...

The only time I use any Rum is for a stuck object with a fouled bore.

Try any kind of alcohol on a power dirty surface and feel that snot like feel.... ewwwww but man is that ever slippery...

December 10, 2008, 06:52 PM
What I've found is if the gun is stored over a period of time say 3 or 4 months the Bore Butter actually turns a lite brown color. I found this in my Hawkens barell and thought it was rust. I also use it in my revolvers and this is where I discovered that it changes color over time. I found no rust just the brown Bore Butter, so maybe that is what people are seeing on the patches they run down the bore and think that the barrell is rusting.

Elbert P . Suggins
December 12, 2008, 11:52 AM
And now the question is, which turns brown, the yellow or the green bore butter? Or both? Inquiring minds want to know!

December 12, 2008, 02:30 PM
The yellow turns brown, I don't know about the green I've never used it.

December 16, 2008, 01:20 PM
Thank you Mr. MyKeal. If I had told them that about the 'seasoning' they would have called me a damn liar! A little gun oil or a little 3in1 machine oil will work just fine. Cabela's Muzzleloading Lube will work good to....

December 18, 2008, 12:28 AM
While I collect and cook daily with 100-year-old iron (and have re-conditioned such with electrolytic and alkali methods), I won't touch the "seasoning" debate because that would incite total thread hijack.

What I want to dump in here is for us home-brew type folks and is Ed Harris' roll-yer-own bore cleaner. Haven't made any yet, but surely will. Yes, it's not "period correct" for reenactment, but I'm not into that aspect.

December 18, 2008, 07:14 AM
Aways up this thread someone talked abt outboards-well a good 2cycle marine oil has a good dose of rust preventatives and is easy to obtain. This stuff DOES penetrate pores in steel or iron. Doesnt turn to goo like wd40. A pint will last forever.

If you enjoyed reading about "Does Bore Butter Rust?" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!