Copper scouring pads for cleaning chambers and barrels.


G. Freeman
July 23, 2009, 07:25 PM
Hi Guys,
I used to buy these copper scouring pads (no-name brand) and they used to work well for cleaning revolver chambers, and gun barrels from lead fouling.

Recently, the ones I've been getting have been scratching my bores. The old ones I used to get really felt like copper and easily bend when folded or wrapped around a bore brush. The new ones I get from Walmart and the like are very elastic and almost feel like steel although the packaging states it's made of copper.

My question is this: Is the brand name Chore Boy a better option than these generic brands I get at wallyworld??

Thanks in advance.

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steel shooter
July 23, 2009, 07:57 PM
I have used Choreboy and Choregirl often to clean my revolver when I was shooting bullseye leagues with soft wadcutters.Choreboy is copper and Choregirl is brass.Both did a good job of cleaning without scratching.To be on the safer side,it probably be a good idea to use a wetting agent such as a bore cleaner to help lube the bore as not to do it dry.

July 23, 2009, 07:58 PM
You're ruining your barrel.

If you want to use this stuff buy ONLY genuine copper Chore Boy.
Many of the others are steel with a copper coating that will absolutely destroy a bore.

steel shooter
July 23, 2009, 08:01 PM
Try useing some JB bore paste to polish the bbl again.That stuff does a really good job.Just follow the directions on the container

Jim K
July 23, 2009, 08:14 PM
I have often recommended copper or brass wool for removal of light rust from guns without scratching the bluing. I will now be specific that it NOT be copper or brass plated steel. I have not seen any of the latter, but want to avoid it for that purpose.

The easy way to tell would be to test with a magnet.


G. Freeman
July 24, 2009, 01:26 PM
Thanks guys so much! My first set was definitely copper many years ago and I've never had problems with scratched bores. Lately, it appears many large stores like Target, Walmart, and the like carry the generic type scrubbers that looks like copper but in actuality may have been steel with a copper coating--which I have suspected, but never really asked anyone to ascertain this. Your replies have clarified this.

Unfortunately, I've already put a scratch in a few barrels. The scratch in my Sig P239 is definitely not superficial--it went down into the metal.

Finally placed an order for Chore Boy from my neighborhood hardware store.

Thanks again!

July 24, 2009, 08:00 PM
Jim hit the nail on the head (as usual). About two years ago I started reloading and using lead bullets. I read here or elsewhere about the Chore Boy pads, bought some "equivalent" at WalMart and thought to grab a magnet--guess what? The "copper" pads attract a magnet! I took them back, went to an Ace Hardware and found the genuine article. They work great.

July 24, 2009, 08:13 PM
Has anyone tried Homax (that's the brand name) coarse bronze wool, from the hardware store?

Uncle Mike
July 24, 2009, 09:22 PM
You know what works pretty good is Scotch-Brite pads.

Pick them up in bulk at Sam's, About 5"X10", green in color.

You can get them in many different 'grit' at places like Grainger, McMaster-Carr or MSC.
The different grits are different colors.

Cut off a small piece, roll it up so as to tightly fit in your barrel and go to it, it will remove lead, copper, carbon and any other fouling and if your not using the 'harsh' grit, won't scratch your barrel.

July 25, 2009, 12:33 PM
Chore Boy pads, bought some "equivalent" at WalMart and thought to grab a magnet--guess what? The "copper" pads attract a magnet!

Interesting, in that I buy my genuine Choreboy brand copper pads from our local WalMart.

July 25, 2009, 12:41 PM
You know what works pretty good is Scotch-Brite padsI got news for you partner.

Green Scotch-Brite pads ARE very definitely abrasive.
And they very definitely will scratch the snot out of steel.

I use them for cleaning rust off saw blades and such, and they leave fine scratches on even the best heat-treated steel.

I would not get one anywhere close to a gun barrel.


July 25, 2009, 12:48 PM
rc...i was going to post the same thing when i read he was using the scotch brite pads. those pads have PUMICE inpregnated in them to make them scratchy and clean well. what do you think thats going to do to the inside of your barrel?.....choreboy works wonderful ( but of course, thats already been stated a hundred times), BUT if you cant find any, hoppes bore gel is the best thing on the market for removing lead and copper, bar NONE (besides choreboy of course). swab the barrel wit it, let it sit a few munites, brush with a bore brush,patch and watch the slivers of lead fall out. scrub a couple more times with the brush, dry patch it, and check for copper/lead. works wonderfully.

July 25, 2009, 12:51 PM
oh and for ease in future cleaning, get yourself some mothers billet polish, put it on a dry patch and brush the bore a few times, dry patch and clean as usual. polishes the bore up like a mirror without screwing things up. next time you go to clean, youll notice A HUGE difference.

July 25, 2009, 01:11 PM
I have used Tornado bore brushes for about 40 years with perfect satisfaction.

I use JB Bore Paste for through cleaning.

And JB Bore Shine for polishing.


Hans Esker
July 28, 2009, 05:31 PM
+1 on Abrasive being in most Scotch Brite pads.

However, the Blue Scotch Brite pads, and their imitators, (as long as they are rated for use with non stick pans) do not have any abrasive in them, but still have good scrubbing power.

4v50 Gary
July 31, 2009, 11:22 PM
Chore Boy for me. It's wrapped around an old bronze brush that's worn out and it works well in scrubbing out the lead.

August 1, 2009, 05:58 PM
I feel your better off cleaning chemically rather than using an abrasive. Takes longer but your not going to scratch the heck out of anything.

August 1, 2009, 09:41 PM
I feel your better off cleaning chemically rather than using an abrasive.

me 2

Jim K
August 2, 2009, 12:13 AM
FWIW, a fellow who fired on the USMC rifle team cleaned the copper fouling out of the barrels of his M1 and M14 rifles with - ready? - Gleem toothpaste! He swore by it and insisted it improved his scores. He is retired now, possibly because he can't get Gleem any more.


Joe Demko
August 4, 2009, 10:32 AM
Toothpaste contains silicaceous abrasives. Some brands have more than others. I've known a couple old timers who used toothpaste on guns when a mild abrasive was required.
Cleaning, whether mechanical or chemical, is not (as one manufacturer notes) an entirely benign process. Abrasives can scratch the bore. Chemicals can etch the bore. The more aggressive the process, the higher the risks.

August 4, 2009, 06:45 PM
3M has a product called synthetic steel wool. I used it to remove surface rust off an old Stevens double barrel shotgun. The owner of a gun store swore by it. It looks like scotch brite but is easy on metal. I soaked the wool with Remoil and worked all the spots off,with no sign of scratches. The synthetic wool is green in color. Joe

Brian Williams
August 4, 2009, 07:44 PM
For Goodness sake, break down and get a Lewis Lead remover now sold by Brownells.

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