Summer Pocket Carry Cautionary Tale


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GCBurner
August 23, 2011, 12:10 AM
This time of year here in Florida, the uniform of the day is shorts and tee shirts to cope with 95+ degree heat and 90%+ humidity. For comfort and concealment's sake, I switched from carrying a stainless steel J-frame .38 Special in a inside-the-waistband holster to a parkerized Kel-Tec .380 in a pocket holster. The little .380 just disappears into the nylon sleeve in my pocket, and I hardly notice it's there, a big contrast to the S&W 640 revolver. I generally run a magazine or three through the Kel-Tec at least once a week when I'm at the range, and it's proven pretty reliable, and I've gotten used to the long trigger pull to the point I can keep everything inside a 8" bullseye at 7 to 10 yards. I'd been keeping it loaded in condition 1 in its holster on the dresser, where I could just pick it up and slip it in my pocket on the way out the door.
I didn't get to the range last week, due to other comittments and pouring rainstorms, but I did still carry it daily, and did a lot of walking (and sweating) in the heat and humidity during the day. When I took it by the range to fire off a few rounds day before yesterday, I was surprised and disappointed that the first shot failed to eject the case, and jammed the next round tight against it. Dropping the mag and letting the slide slam forward, I was able to eject it manually, and feed the next round, which also failed to eject. Three out of six rounds in the mag jammed, which is unacceptable in a self-defense pistol.
I took it home and broke it down to examine it, and noticed little speckles of rust on the extractor spring. There were also little speckes of rust on the breech face, and little speckles inside the chamber. The nylon pocket holster is not waterproof, and in spite of the fact that the gun was well cleaned and oiled after the last time I used it, the humid, sweaty environment in my pants pocket had turned it into a jam-o-matic after two weeks of carry without use.
After a thorough cleaning, scrubbing, and relubing, I took it back to the range today and cranked off 40 rounds without a single failure, which made me feel a lot better about it. From here on out, it comes out of the holster when I get home, unloaded, and swabbed with Breakfree CLP inside and out, until the next time I load it up to carry it.
I'd recommend the same procedure to anyone else who carries concealed on their person in the Sweaty Lattitudes this time of year. It could be right embarrassing in some situations it you could only fire a single shot, when you needed to fire two or three.

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J_McLeod
August 23, 2011, 12:15 AM
A similar thing happened to my wife's LCP after a long vacation in the Southeast. It took me a lot of work to get it clean again.

thefamcnaj
August 23, 2011, 12:20 AM
I carry my glock 27 iwb in a leather holster. It's a wild bills concealment holster. It's bull hide. I've never paid attention to wheather sweat penetrates to the gun. I sure hope not because it only gets cleaned and lubed after range visits. I'll have to keep a closer I on it.

armoredman
August 23, 2011, 12:35 AM
I had a PPK I pocket carried one day in AZ heat. The side of it was solid rust when I pulled it out. I carried an alloy revolver next time I pocket carried.
My current CCW, CZ SP-01 Phantom, has a poly frame and a VERY thick leather sweat shield between the metal and the sweaty skin. Carried for two months in AZ heat and monsoon humidity, shot it today, no issues what so ever.
Can I suggest a Robert Mika pocket holster? Cheap and worth 5 times the price.

Safetychain
August 23, 2011, 01:09 AM
That is why I will not buy any gun that is not stainless or some other material that is pretty much rust proof/highly resistant. I spend 5 months a year in the Keys when I'm not in the Carolina lowcountry which is just as bad. My compromise in pocket carry is the TCP-380 in stainless. Not everything is stainless but the barrel and slide are at least. I carry every day and have cleaned it maybe 5 times in the last year and no rust specks yet.

GCBurner
August 23, 2011, 01:32 AM
In a hot, humid environment, even stainless steel isn't rust-proof, only rust-resistant. Preventative maintenence is my new religion, including the blued steel magazines and mag springs.

chihuahuatn
August 23, 2011, 01:49 AM
BTW, LA (Lower Alabama) and East Tennessee my guns see alot of humidity and sweat. I condition my guns with Eezox, never had problem with rust.
Mike

Pud
August 23, 2011, 08:07 AM
Can you elaborate on the "Eezox"??
Pud

FLAvalanche
August 23, 2011, 09:08 AM
Another product that I use is Inox. I use Inox grease and oil on all of my firearms, rods and reels, and everywhere on my boat and truck. Love the stuff.

It doesn't evaporate or rinse off with water like other oils and lubes. Believe it or not the stuff is food grade and even kosher certified.

The only downside is that they recommend using the grease and oil together as other brands of oil and/or grease can break down the Inox.

herkyguy
August 23, 2011, 09:29 AM
Live and carry in FL. I've never had rust appear on a CCW gun. I keep them oiled, but not to the point where it's dripping - I use Breakfree or CLP exclusively. I am really perplexed by these tales of rust that surface from time to time. The way I see it, either people's sweat is different or we're all cleaning our guns differently. I'm cautious now with my pistols because these threads pop up from time to time.

ForumSurfer
August 23, 2011, 09:55 AM
I carry my glock 27 iwb in a leather holster. It's a wild bills concealment holster. It's bull hide. I've never paid attention to wheather sweat penetrates to the gun. I sure hope not because it only gets cleaned and lubed after range visits. I'll have to keep a closer I on it.

Your 27 will be fine. I've carried my glock for quite some time in the hot, humid southeast. Sweat, direct exposure to water, falling off a boat...it is good to go with minimal effort, trust me. :)

I was just looking at the Kel-Tec and thinking about picking one up. I guess I'll need to surf a few forums and find out what others here in the humid south are saying.

JohnBT
August 23, 2011, 10:17 AM
I pocket carried a P-32 in a leather holster everyday for many years. Of course, it was hard chromed. :) It's as humid here as anywhere.

Alex23
August 23, 2011, 10:20 AM
"Your 27 will be fine. I've carried my glock for quite some time in the hot, humid southeast. Sweat, direct exposure to water, falling off a boat...it is good to go with minimal effort, trust me. "

Seconded. I have carried Glocks in hot and humid Texas and they seem to hold up. If I'm carrying one I like to apply a little Ballistol to it every couple of weeks but that's all.

USAF_Vet
August 23, 2011, 10:42 AM
It's been pretty humid here in Michigan this summer. I don't have central air in my house, just fans and window units. I ended up with a nasty rust problem. I keep my guns oiled if they are put up for long term storage. I went out and bought a bunch of desicant and placed them in the gun cabinet, and some small packets for the pistol case. I also have the foam in the pistol and rifle cases lightly oiled. The dessicant lasts for about 3 months, and I was surprised how much moisture it pulled.

Waterproof/ water repellant treat your nylon holster. You can get camp dry spray at Wal Mart, and it works as a nice waterproofer.

Dogguy
August 23, 2011, 11:38 AM
Pocket pistols need cleaning and relubrication frequently, especially in hot, humid weather. It doesn't really matter what type of holster you use, what miracle gun oil you use or if the gun is stainless steel or wonder metal. The gun needs to be inspected daily. Pockets are dirty, sweaty environments. Holsters collect crud and moisture. You may need to field strip, clean and relubricate autos every few days under those conditions. Otherwise, you're asking for trouble.

PabloJ
August 23, 2011, 01:19 PM
Going to the range at least once a week and cleaning that thing daily would be way too much work for me.

thefamcnaj
August 23, 2011, 06:57 PM
I have a can of break free Clp. It says its a dry lube. I bought it as a reccomendation from a friend. I use hoppes 9, hoppes elite gun cleaner, and rem oil. I clean with the hoppe's products and lube with the rem oil. What I'm wondering about this break free is this: As you clean with it, is it lubing the gun as well at the same time thus ruling out the need for an oil. This is why I don't use the break free because I don't know if its a cleaner or a lube or both. Is it a one product does all? Sorry if that was an elementary question guys.

bhk
August 23, 2011, 07:33 PM
I have a can of break free Clp. It says its a dry lube. I bought it as a reccomendation from a friend. I use hoppes 9, hoppes elite gun cleaner, and rem oil. I clean with the hoppe's products and lube with the rem oil. What I'm wondering about this break free is this: As you clean with it, is it lubing the gun as well at the same time thus ruling out the need for an oil. This is why I don't use the break free because I don't know if its a cleaner or a lube or both. Is it a one product does all? Sorry if that was an elementary question guys.
CLP = Cleaner, Lubricant, Protectant. Breakfree CLP has worked great for me for decades. It is not worlds best bore cleaner, but works ok for most handgun cleanups. Removing copper from a rifle bore takes a harsher cleaner.

thefamcnaj
August 23, 2011, 07:46 PM
So after I clean the rails and barrel and such with the break free there is no need to go back with oil down the rails or on the barrel? After I clean the gun to my satisfaction with the break free I can just put it back together because it was lubed as I cleaned correct? Sorry guys I'm headed to the other room now to get my dunce cap.

chihuahuatn
August 23, 2011, 11:07 PM
Hey Pud,
I condition my guns with Eezox to prevent rust (note I don't rely on it as a cleaner). Here is a link to a good test btw CLP and Eezox
http://www.thegunzone.com/rust.html

Eezox website
http://www.eezox.com/gun-care.html

hope this helps,
Mike

hardluk1
August 24, 2011, 02:12 PM
bhk clp's good stuff over all. I carried a taurus 85SS for almost 11 years down in sw fl in my right front pocket. Worked as a carpenter used a sythetic holster and still do today. Many of those summer days i had to change pants as they were soaked. Tool pouchs too My revolver was between me and the pouch. That SS taurus look almost as good today as when i bought it new. There are different quality of SS, some maybe tend to show wear and rust more than others maybe. I have used Breakfree CLP since 1975. I do use a good cleaner when needed but once you get a barrel broke in the cleaner is not needed often. I found with break free I could get away with more abuse and not show any problems. I grew up hunting in those S FL swamps with low cost blued shotguns and rifles and couple good handguns . Still own them and no rust. It does seem over time to leave a film on finish's that just soaks in, maybe. maybe not. But its allways there. Eezox may be better at stopping rust but if you take desent carry of your fireams they will be fine with clp.

two gun charlie
August 24, 2011, 02:17 PM
thanks for the reminder GC , funny how rust has a tendency to sneak up on a gun :scrutiny:

msparks
August 24, 2011, 02:43 PM
I had been carrying my glock 26 IWB most of the summer in a MIC holster. That thing would be covered in sweat even after 10 min of wear. If it's over 90 I now carry mostly OWB in a Blackhawk CQC holster. I don't care if someone sees it or not.

tpelle
August 24, 2011, 04:32 PM
I have a stainless 1911 that I carry in a leather IWB holster. I discovered that the wood stocks would soak up and hold enough moisture to cause pitting under them, and a normal daily wipe-down wouldn't alleviate the problem.

I went to Staples and bought a cheap report cover with a clear plastic front. I traced the stock panels on to the plastic, then cut the plastic slightly smaller than the stocks, and cut holes for the grip screw bushings. I reassembled the stocks on the pistol with plastic sandwiched between the wood and the frame. Problem solved.

KodiakBeer
August 24, 2011, 09:19 PM
Hey Pud,
I condition my guns with Eezox to prevent rust (note I don't rely on it as a cleaner). Here is a link to a good test btw CLP and Eezox
http://www.thegunzone.com/rust.html


Wow! What a thorough test! I've been using Eezox for 10 or 12 years in some pretty harsh conditions and don't use anything any more.

orionengnr
August 24, 2011, 11:03 PM
Can you elaborate on the "Eezox"??
Read this test and see what you think.
http://www.6mmbr.com/corrosiontest.html
I've been using it for about five years now. It has two downsides:
1. It can be hard to find.
2. It can be a bit pricey (especially if you have to pay shipping).

The other one was posted previously, but is validation of the one I posted.
http://www.thegunzone.com/rust.html

I buy enough to last me a year or two at a time, and it's all good.
We can argue all day long about how good a "cleaner" and "lubricant" Eezox is, but if corrosion is your issue, I submit that as a "protectant" it has no equal.

engineer88
August 24, 2011, 11:35 PM
I had a blued gun I carried iwb that got rusted once. I live in Florida. I think some of us have corrosive sweat for sure. My blued P3AT would hiccup occasionally when dry or pocket lint filled. Switched to a hard chromed P32 and rust issues as well as any reliability issues went away. In fact it has been three months since I have cleaned or lubed it short of blowing it out with canned air. Friday, I will pull it out, shoot my carry mag, plus a full box of 50. If it performs flawlessly as I expect it will, it will be the third time it has passed this test and I will feel almost as confident with it as one of my jframes. Almost. ;)

The hard chrome reduces friction allowing smoother cycling and helps with the rust issue. I highly recommend that finish, especially in these little pocket rockets. Short of doing that send it off to Jack F. For nickel plating or another similar shop that will do a quality job at a good price.

Yo Mama
August 24, 2011, 11:48 PM
I always recommend when someone asks about a great pocket carry that they instead carry IWB. With a sweat guard if possible. I hate carrying a spare mag in my pocket during the summer, as the bullets have changed color.

If one is comfortable and set on a small "pocket" pistol, carry IWB the same weapon. With the size, you have about no chance of printing, and it's easier and quicker to draw.

GCBurner, did you clear out the rust? Is it still an issue? Does the gun now function?

GCBurner
August 25, 2011, 12:09 AM
I always recommend when someone asks about a great pocket carry that they instead carry IWB. With a sweat guard if possible. I hate carrying a spare mag in my pocket during the summer, as the bullets have changed color.

If one is comfortable and set on a small "pocket" pistol, carry IWB the same weapon. With the size, you have about no chance of printing, and it's easier and quicker to draw.

GCBurner, did you clear out the rust? Is it still an issue? Does the gun now function?
I polished off all the rust, everywhere, broke it down completely, removing the extractor, firing pin, and firing pin spring to clean inside the slide openings and underneath the extractor spring. I cleaned the chamber and slide face with brushes and CLP, and made sure everything had a coating of CLP before it was reassembled.

After shooting the 40-round string the other day, I just did the normal cleaning with CLP, and took it out for another session with some Remington factory .380s this evening. No misfires, and no failures to feed or eject. So far, so good. I've never used Eezox, but Breakfree CLP seems to be pretty close in the corrosion prevention test. I also washed & dried my nylon pocket holster, just to get out any salt that might have built up inside from carrying in sweaty jeans and shorts. From here on, I definitely won't be letting it go 2 weeks of pocket carry without at least giving it a close inspection, and a wipedown with CLP. As long as it's clean and lubed, it shoots fine.

Yo Mama
August 25, 2011, 12:20 AM
Good to hear it's back in action. Try to look into IWB holsters for that puppy, you may be surprised how comfortable it is. Plus you can fit other stuff into that free pocket. :)

I love CLP, never used Eezox, but also saw how comparible they were.

Good luck to you buddy.

MICHAEL T
August 25, 2011, 12:26 AM
I carry and wipe my pistol kelTec with a silcone cloth be fore I put in holster and pocket I use a leather holster. when I pocket carry.

Ben86
August 25, 2011, 01:09 AM
I've carried an LCP and PM9 often with pocket carry in the Southern MS heat and humidity and never had the insides rust. I do re-lube my guns every month if I haven't shot them. The LCP started getting a tiny bit of rust on the outside before I started wiping it down after every time I carried it. I use Breakfree CLP on my guns. After leaving CLP on that spot for a day it disappeared.

Although I'm risking getting flamed by saying this, Kel-Tec guns seem more rust prone than others.

GCBurner
August 25, 2011, 01:47 AM
I've carried an LCP and PM9 often with pocket carry in the Southern MS heat and humidity and never had the insides rust. I do re-lube my guns every month if I haven't shot them. The LCP started getting a tiny bit of rust on the outside before I started wiping it down after every time I carried it. I use Breakfree CLP on my guns. After leaving CLP on that spot for a day it disappeared.

Although I'm risking getting flamed by saying this, Kel-Tec guns seem more rust prone than others.
I don't know that they're any more rust prone than any other blued steel handgun under similar conditions, but if I had to buy another one, I'd probably go for the hard chrome finish, rather than the Parkerized or blued. The P32 or P3AT would be real winners if they came in stainless steel, or a Glock style Tennifer finish; I've never seen a speck of rust on my Glock, and I don't clean it nearly as meticulously as the Kel-Tek. Of course, I don't carry the Glock nearly as much, and it rides in a Kydex holster on my belt, instead of stuck in my pocket.

KodiakBeer
August 25, 2011, 03:22 AM
I've never used Eezox, but Breakfree CLP seems to be pretty close in the corrosion prevention test.

Read the text. The Eezox was many times more effective than the Breakfree.

heeler
August 25, 2011, 01:05 PM
I picked up a brand new standard blued LCP yesterday from my FFL.
Being I intend to shoot it throughly today I broke it down and decided to clean it.
Ruger throughly oiled this little pistol at the factory.
It was all blue and shiney.
After blasting the well oiled gun with a non clorinated break cleaner within minutes of bringing it back inside the house(it was over 100 degrees yesterday and hotter than that in my garage) I was getting ready to use the CLP on the LCP (wow,the same letters) I noticed the gun had already started rusting!!
Obviously these things need to be kept well oiled.
So after todays range session I wont hesitate a minute to start cleaning it and reoiling with the CLP.

Yo Mama
August 25, 2011, 02:20 PM
Kodiakbear, the problem I had with the test when I read it was that the metal used to test were nails, not finished firearms. I'm no metal expert, but I'm guessing some factors would be steel type and heat treating.

One test I was looking at wasn't much better using carbon steel for their testing, and still not a real firearm, but none the less: http://www.6mmbr.com/corrosiontest.html

Big difference in 19 vs. 43 hours in salt water exposure where Eezox excelled. However, I won't be subjecting my guns to this torture :) so 19 hours looked excellent.

Ben86
August 25, 2011, 04:43 PM
I picked up a brand new standard blued LCP yesterday from my FFL.
Being I intend to shoot it throughly today I broke it down and decided to clean it.
Ruger throughly oiled this little pistol at the factory.
It was all blue and shiney.
After blasting the well oiled gun with a non clorinated break cleaner within minutes of bringing it back inside the house(it was over 100 degrees yesterday and hotter than that in my garage) I was getting ready to use the CLP on the LCP (wow,the same letters) I noticed the gun had already started rusting!!
Obviously these things need to be kept well oiled.
So after todays range session I wont hesitate a minute to start cleaning it and reoiling with the CLP.

Good grief, do you people have acid rain hanging in the air? Which part of the gun?

heeler
August 25, 2011, 04:44 PM
I can only assume it's the finish Ruger uses.
My Diamondback does not do that.

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