Recipe for over-ball grease in BP revolvers


August 25, 2011, 05:49 PM
Ok,here's my recipe for grease,on old-fashioned way,step by step.
You need : beef tallow (fat) ,bees wax, 2 pots

Cook beef tallow for about 2 hours,while are you cooking,you need to remove junk like flesh,little bones etc.
In other pot in same time we cook same volume amount of bees wax,and while doing that,you need to remove foam and other
impurities.After that mix tallow and wax and cook it for next 2-3 hours,or how many you need to homogenize this mixture.
Then cool it down,see if viscosity (density) is good enough,and if you need,heat that mixture again and add a little amount of
vaseline if you want that mixture to be softer.
Do not add water.


If you enjoyed reading about "Recipe for over-ball grease in BP revolvers" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!
4v50 Gary
August 25, 2011, 07:27 PM
This merits placement in Black Powder Essentials. Thank you.

August 25, 2011, 10:29 PM
what heat temps you using?

August 25, 2011, 10:30 PM
thanks for the post, will try this on my old charcoal grill. Hence the heat question.

August 26, 2011, 02:45 AM
remember you can get a cheap aluminum pot for a nickle at most garage sales, that's what i use for making BP lube!

August 26, 2011, 03:52 AM
My stove has 6 different heat temps,so I usually cook at 3 or 4.Don't worry,first few times you need to determine which heat is best for you.If you find it hard,you need to soften mixture to make it softer,or after all,you may need to add a small amount of vaseline to make it softer.

Stope Rat
August 26, 2011, 05:58 PM
May not be "old-fashioned" or authentic, but I've used a mix of mineral oil and beeswax for years now.

Works good as an overball lube, and also as "furniture polish" on the stock of my repro Civil War musket. (And in a pinch I've used it as chapstick.)

Heat equal volumes of mineral oil and beeswax together and let cool. I generally heat the oil first, then shave the beeswax into it to reduce the amount of time it takes to melt the wax. More wax makes a harder lube. Once it's all melted, I pour it directly into metal cap tins and let it cool. Put the lid on and throw it into my haversack.

August 26, 2011, 06:30 PM
I used same,but stopped using because I need some tighter grease on hot days.

August 26, 2011, 09:07 PM
I was under the impression that mineral oils (petroleum) acted badly with the sulfur in black powder, creating tar. Is this not correct?


August 26, 2011, 10:27 PM
I mix up my ingredients, block off the barrel of a revolver with an ear plug, pour the mixture down the other end, let it harden, and push it out. Then I have lube sticks from which I can cut perfectly sized pills as I need them.

August 26, 2011, 11:26 PM
I was under the impression that mineral oils (petroleum) acted badly with the sulfur in black powder, creating tar. Is this not correct?
Yes and no.

In general, petroleum based oils leave a tar like substance when exposed to black powder combustion. However, the reason is that black powder combustion temperatures are too low to completely burn the oils; the incomplete combustion results in tar. Sulfur has nothing to do with it.

In addition, only the lower distillate oils need the higher temperatures to burn completely. Mineral oils are more highly refined and are completely burned leaving no residual tar. You can safely use mineral oil based lubricants such as Ballistol, Butch's Bore Shine, Hoppe's No. 9 PLUS, etc. without concern. Other oils with lower petroleum distillates such as the original Hoppe's No. 9 will leave a tar.

Loyalist Dave
August 27, 2011, 09:22 AM
I used same,but stopped using because I need some tighter grease on hot days.

I use 33% beeswax, and 66% olive oil, or in old school terms, "one part" beeswax, and "two parts" olive oil. NOW, when I use a 50/50 mixture it's plenty stiff, even in hot temps, but for folks going on a regular basis up to the 100+ degree mark, you might wish to try 60% beeswax or a tiny bit more, which would be 3 parts melted beeswax, and two parts warmed oil.

The melted tallow has a higher melting point than crisco, or lard, so that too is a good idea for keeping the lube stiff in hot weather. IF you get colder temps, though you have to go with something softer, or liquid like olive oil, or mineral oil.

You're not going to go above 160 degrees when heating, as both Tallow and Beeswax melt before that. At around 180 degrees the beeswax starts to change, at at around 205 it will combust, so low temps are the way to go.


August 28, 2011, 03:50 AM
whats wrong with something simple like Crisco etc?

August 28, 2011, 07:32 PM
Beeswax and Crisco, in equal volumes, works well for me in hot and cold weather.

August 28, 2011, 08:01 PM
i use two parts Crisco one part paraffin. paraffin may be petroleum based but it lacks hydrocarbons that cause the black tar deposits. it also isn't ignited or burnt much by the powder. i find lube splattered on my target sometimes around the bullet hole with 20 grains. you can also get a jar, fill it up with herbs and such, then cover the herbs with alcohol. let it sit overnight, boil off the alcohol, and you have some concentrated scents that smell great in lube. i used some elements of the forest near my house. pine bark, lemon balm, bay tree leaves, it smells great! i also found i can get some old man's beard that grows on the trees in there, and use that under my ball kinda like a wad. i like it for a filler between powder and ball on light loads. it's old timey and biodegradable meaning i don't have to pick it up after i shoot it.

August 28, 2011, 09:46 PM
Busyhands, would those bay trees happen to be bay laurel? If so, that's where bay rum after shave gets it's scent.
I wouldn't mind having bay rum BP lube.

August 28, 2011, 10:30 PM
i think they might be bay laural. the lube does smell good, it's like a woody, sweet, spicy smell. i added a lot of bay to the extract, more than any other ingredient and a lot of extract to the lube. okay, that will be tomorrows project, make Bay Laural scented BP lube and post a recipe here for all to enjoy! :P

August 29, 2011, 10:09 AM
I used various mixtures for grease,but I don't have idea on what "Crisco" stands for.I suppose it is something that is only in America.

August 29, 2011, 10:51 AM
Montengrin, Crisco is a brand name for vegetable oil that's been hydrogenated, which makes it a solid at room temp, looks like lard, but is made from vegetable oils.

August 29, 2011, 08:05 PM
Busy, I'd love to have a BP lube that smells the same as my favorite aftershave.
Maybe I need to order some bay laurel extract from you.
I've been wanting to make my own bay rum AS.

Back on topic, sorry. I've made my own BP bullet/over ball/patch lube from beeswax, lanolin, canola oil, olive oil, and Crisco.
Sometimes I use canola instead of olive. Sometimes vice versa.
Someties I use Crisco in addition to the oil, sometimes I use it instead of oil.

I'll share a little technique of mine. I melt my lube and then pour it into empty stick deodorant containers.
Sure makes it easy to apply it to your patches.
Not any help with applying it to conicals or revolvers. But it's great for patched round balls. Just twist the knob to raise you lube stick, and rub it on.

August 31, 2011, 11:10 AM
Sounds a lot like some stuff that Dixie Gun Works used to sell under the brand name "Old Zip". IIRC, they used mutton tallow instead of beef, but otherwise pretty much identical.

August 31, 2011, 07:51 PM
Olive oil and beeswax. I like pohills idea though. thats something i need to try. of course need to wait till everyone is out of the house again. Nobody likes the smell and mess. anytime im in the kitchen there is going to be a mess

August 31, 2011, 08:14 PM
just made a batch of bay scented lube! i used the bark instead of the leaves. you just grind that stuff up nice and fine, enough to fill a shot glass twice and it should be enough. then put it in a container full of alcohol to sit overnight or longer. then you strain the stuff out, then let some of the alcohol evaporate off, then put it in the bottom of the pan when under the wax and Crisco and it should heat up with the lube ingredients. it's real easy. i keep my lube in those wide mouth canning jars that are kinda short. they work well!

August 31, 2011, 08:18 PM
mix a lttle apple in there to help attract the deer,or orange zest

September 1, 2011, 09:16 PM
that sounds like a good idea! i will try that!

Shotgun Willy
September 2, 2011, 02:28 AM
I've got some lube pills over in my barn, I've never gotten around to using. They're made with paraffin, toilet bowl ring, and canola oil. I was needing something to put on a rat trap, so I smashed a lube pill onto the trigger lever. Worked like a charm.

September 2, 2011, 02:48 AM
I did not posted this recipe because it is more superior than others for prevention of chainfire,but I posted it also because after I shot 4 full cylinders with it,it still looks it is shot with Pyrodex,not with real black powder.In other words,it helps revolver to stay clean.

wild willy
September 2, 2011, 07:07 AM
Superior?Your recipe is not any better or any worse than the dozens or hundreds of differant recipes using lard,sheep tallow,crisco,toilet bowl rings,emu fat,castor oil,olive oil, bee wax, and who knows what else

September 2, 2011, 04:11 PM
Hey!You are not paying attention on what I said.I said it IS NOT superior than others,so read that post again !!!!!! I just said revolver requires lesser cleaning after it !!!

September 2, 2011, 06:52 PM
I am hooked on a grease that we used in the Tool Room and on Injection Molds called "Old Bull".
It works well on revolver chambers since it is easily dispensed from a large hypodermic needle and it also fills the bill for lubing conical bullets.

If you enjoyed reading about "Recipe for over-ball grease in BP revolvers" here in archive, you'll LOVE our community. Come join today for the full version!