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Old June 19, 2015, 11:59 PM   #1
elktrout
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AR15 lube

I recently bought my first AR. I cleaned and lubed it with Slip 2000 EWL, based on recommendations from a reputable local shop.

But, WOW, is that stuff expensive. $13 for a small bottle.

I have seen some posts on various forums in which guys said they use Mobil 1 synthetic motor oil.

What do you use and why? Does the lube that is used actually help to reduce the carbon build up and "welding on" of carbon to the working parts?

Thanks.
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Old June 20, 2015, 12:07 AM   #2
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Pretty much use motor oil and automotive grease for all gun lubrication anymore.

The only "gun oil/lube" that I have either came with a gun or it came with the respective garage-sale 'box of stuff'.
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Old June 20, 2015, 12:09 AM   #3
M1key
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Slip 2000 EWL--best

Slip 2000--good

Break Free CLP--also good. cheaper. Mil Spec and Nato Spec

There are others, but I would stick with lube designed for firearms like the above three. Running 'em wet also helps to minimize/loosen carbon build-up. Good luck.

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Old June 20, 2015, 12:14 AM   #4
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Personally, I don't believe in all the gun lube hype, simply because I refuse to believe there is any significant amount of research going into gun lube applications as compared to the automotive industry. You want to minimize carbon build up? Seems like there's nothing better than engine oil. I use a 50/50 mix of motor oil and ATF. After all, if you're really running your guns that wet (which isn't a bad idea), it seems to me that its even less necessary to use excessively expensive "gun" lubes.
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Old June 20, 2015, 12:17 AM   #5
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I use EWL. It seems like it stays in place real well for a CLP. I've used the other usual suspects like Breakfree, Hoppe's, and RemOil, but EWL does stick around noticeably longer, in my experience.

If you want to go cheaper, you could go Frog Lube. It is more per container, but that stuff will last you forever. I've used it with excellent luck on just about every type of firearm.
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Old June 20, 2015, 01:18 AM   #6
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I keep a bottle of CLP in my range bag because it's convenient. I use 50/50 mix of motor oil and ATF for regular lube after cleaning. There is a video with a well known instructor, I believe Clint Smith, wiping dry a AR rifle, squirting some "personal lubricant" into the bolt and shooting. A lot of shooting. He concluded with the statement that some lubes are indeed better than others but any lube will do.
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Old June 20, 2015, 01:28 AM   #7
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Quote:
I use a 50/50 mix of motor oil
Ok inquiring minds need to know

what weight motor oil ?

10w/30

5w/30

what ?????????
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Old June 20, 2015, 01:35 AM   #8
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I use 10w30 and Dextron II because it's what I buy anyway for vehicles. A quart of each makes a half gallon of gun lube and lasts for, well, I'm not sure. I haven't run out yet. I past the five year mark on my jug-o-lube and still have some left.

I do use solvents for cleaning, though. Shooters Choice for most things and Sweets for copper fouling. But lube after cleaning is the oil/atf mix.
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Old June 20, 2015, 01:41 AM   #9
RustyShackelford
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AR gun care, products ...

I don't use auto industry products on my firearms. Some do, I do not; .
In 2015, there are many great non toxic and strong lubes, oils, CLPs, etc.
Some gunners and gun shop staff say; oh, this great or this is #1(this week ) but there are a few tried & true products worth the $$$...

I'd look at these brands-CLPs: Froglube, Slip2000, Gunzilla; www.gunzilla.us , LPX; www.mpro7.com , Ballistol, Hornady One Shot, Eezox, Weaponshield, Rand CLP, SEAL-1, IGG: www.italiangungrease.com .
I've used Froglube liquid CLP since the summer of 2014 & I'm very impressed with the quality. It's not cheap but it is non toxic, has no harsh odors, is easy to use & protects the metal very well. Some gunners buy the Froglube grease but I'd purchase the liquid 4oz CLP or get a few sample Froglube packets, .
I've also bought & cleaned my guns with Ballistol. Like Froglube it's safe, no fumes or strong odors, non toxic, and works well. Ballistol is handy around the camp or home too. It's safe for wood, plastic, metal, rubber.
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Old June 20, 2015, 02:07 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Da Yooper View Post
Ok inquiring minds need to know

what weight motor oil ?

10w/30

5w/30

what ?????????
Whatever I have on hand for car oil changes. Usually 5w30. Old fashioned dinosaur stuff. I don't use synthetics in my vehicles or my guns, to the best of my knowledge anyway.

When I do an oil change, I always have extra left over in those 5 quart jugs the auto parts stores sell. I put some of the extra in those plastic zoom spout oilers. I use that oil for more than just guns. ARs included of course.
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Old June 20, 2015, 02:18 AM   #11
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The only lube I have used that I didn't like was Slip 2000 EWL. Everything else, Tetra, break free clip, gun butter, and motor oil have worked well.
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Old June 20, 2015, 08:45 AM   #12
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It's your choice and a lot of time and posts over the years haven't narrowed it down one bit.

There are those who have even tested lubes on bare metal strips and left them out in the rain for a year. Some work pretty good and it's not the ones you expect. If you happen to plan on leaving your lever action under a cedar in the Rockies for 100 years, tho, nothing will be good enough.

Since NONE of the working parts of a firearm are highly stressed reciprocating systems then auto lubricants are overkill - guns only need simple oils to keep them working. But the auto grade lubricants add a lot of detergents and can have much better retention on surfaces without draining, which aids rust prevention.

AR's need lube in the upper cam pin channel, the rest is apply and wipe down. More than that in a recommendation quickly boils down to a lot of internet locker room posturing about who's the Man. Pick one and use it, regular maintenance is more important than some highly recommended expensive super lube and letting it sit for months at a time neglected.

No doubt that lever gun left sitting under a cedar tree in the Rockies for 100 years would look the same regardless of whatever it was lubed with. Cleaned and humidity free storage is what works, not what lube, as the museum grade guns that come up for sale prove. Old mint grade guns from the 1800's were lubed with rendered animal fat, not petroleum distillates. Maintenance and storage have far more influence.
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Old June 20, 2015, 09:50 AM   #13
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I started using Remington dry lube to lubricate my AR and found it stays cleaner longer than it does when I use a "wet" oil.
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Old June 20, 2015, 10:06 AM   #14
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What weight? It doesn't matter. I've used dipsticks from peoples cars to lube pistols a hundred times. We'll never outlive the run a Glock dry mentality. Even Glocks run better with lube.

Try:
STP/ATF mixed evenly.
Then add Mobile1 or Lucas Red&Tacky bearing grease to get the thickness you want.


The ATF allows dirt to flow away from sliding areas, carbon shouldn't really stick. The STP is sticky as hell and coats good. And the grease is a simple thickener and load bearing to keep it all in place. Use as lube only, do not use inside barrel, use BF CLP for that.
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Old June 20, 2015, 10:41 AM   #15
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A quick search will reveal that there are plenty of threads on this subject. A couple of quick notes-
-Using lube is more important than which lube you use
-ARs are designed to run on oil, not grease
-The most important place to lube is the piston, which is the tail end of the bolt. Place a few drops in the exhaust ports of the carrier to keep your AR running smooth.
-Motor oils and ATF can cause skin problems with some folks
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Old June 20, 2015, 12:43 PM   #16
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Buy a quart of synthetic motor oil. Now you have enough lube for years. Engines are built to much tighter tolerances than most of our guns. If its good enough for camshafts, bearings and valves, your AR will run like a clock.
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Old June 20, 2015, 01:17 PM   #17
Welding Rod
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Although I agree that auto oils are just fine, the auto analogy is a bit off base as as a firearm is not operating with a pressurized (or filtered) oil system. An AR operates its entire life in the equivalent of a "cold start" for an auto engine. So as has been mentioned, the regularity of application becomes quite important.

BTW, while I use oil myself, I find it interesting that new BCM uppers come oiled, but with white grease on the can pin and in the cam pin hole.
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Old June 20, 2015, 01:50 PM   #18
sawdeanz
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Not to hijack the thread but having got my first AR I'm having trouble finding an authority on how to lube the AR properly. I'm guessing you would save a lot of money if you didn't bathe the gun in the stuff. For example MistWolf says:

Quote:
Originally Posted by MistWolf View Post
A quick search will reveal that there are plenty of threads on this subject. A couple of quick notes-
-Using lube is more important than which lube you use
-ARs are designed to run on oil, not grease
-The most important place to lube is the piston, which is the tail end of the bolt. Place a few drops in the exhaust ports of the carrier to keep your AR running smooth.
-Motor oils and ATF can cause skin problems with some folks
I'm not saying MistWolf is wrong, but I've seen just as many guides/videos that specifically say not to do this as there are guides/videos that say to do this. Some say you only need to lube the bearing surfaces of the carrier i.e. the 4 flat rails, while others get much more complicated. I'm sure that you could pretty much get away with a lot of techniques and still have a gun that functions fine, but I'm looking at long term wear resistance. So who should I be listening to? Can anyone point the way? BTW I'm using froglube at the moment cuz I have a tub of it already.
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Old June 20, 2015, 04:04 PM   #19
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Mobil 1 0w40 "European Formula" Class IV true synthetic.
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Old June 20, 2015, 05:23 PM   #20
JO JO
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I have settled on ballistol been working just fine I really feel the whole lube thing is overrated just think how long firearms have been around working reliable how many wars in all environments with out the new best and newest snake oil it's just fun oil keep it clean and oiled it will work
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Old June 20, 2015, 08:19 PM   #21
dfariswheel
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Can anyone point the way? BTW I'm using froglube at the moment cuz I have a tub of it already

NO ONE knows more about it then the US military.
Here's a site that has current USGI military Field Manuals.
NOTE: the information at the page top about what password and username to use to get in.

http://www.biggerhammer.net/manuals/

Take a look at the M16A2, M4, M4A1 Operator' Manual - TM 9-1005-319-10 and the US Marine Corp Rifle manual.
These have all the cleaning and lubrication info you might need.
There are other ways to clean and lube but these are as good as any.

As for using motor lubricants in guns, note that most motor oils offer little to no protection against rust and may not ply well with human skin or some plastics.

There are no "magic" lubricants and no lubricant stands noticeably above any other of the great many on the market.
The USGI standard CLP as sold by CLP Breakfree is as good as anything and isn't that expensive.

CLP has been used by the US military since the early 70's and has a well-proven track record of working very well.
Since it's still in use says it works very well.
Unlike many other lubes CLP Breakfree has a solvent in it that keeps carbon fouling soft and allows the moving parts to sweep fouling out of the way. This allows the rifle to keep working longer.
It's also one of the top at preventing rust.

And as above, WHAT you lubricate with is nowhere near as important as that you DO lubricate.
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Old June 20, 2015, 08:41 PM   #22
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Quote:
Since NONE of the working parts of a firearm are highly stressed reciprocating systems then auto lubricants are overkill - guns only need simple oils to keep them working. But the auto grade lubricants add a lot of detergents and can have much better retention on surfaces without draining, which aids rust prevention.
Self loading firearms and Otto cycle engines are both heat engines that use reciprocating motion to do work. A gun uses a one shot piston (the bullet) in a cylinder (the barrel) with gunpowder providing the fuel and oxygen. Extra energy can be tapped off in various ways to repeat the action.

Guns are much more stressed than Otto cycle engines. Pretty much any gun would be worn out after 100,000 rounds, with possible receiver damage, the barrel shot out, and many other parts needing repair or replacement.

An gasoline engine, OTOH, with its external cooling system and filtered, pressurized oil supply fed into bearings, has it easy. If I'm running at 3000 rpm my engine has made 180,000 revolutions in one hour (and fired each piston 180,000 times, if it's a four cylinder) yet I expect my engine to last much more than one hour under load, and without replacing parts too!

Engine oils are designed for engines, and they have additives that are good for engines. They also don't have additives that are bad of O2 sensors and catalytic converters, which most guns don't have.

Guns are static most of the time, but when they are used they experience very high temperatures and large shock loads. You want an oil that's good at protecting metal, has good EP additives, and is creepy, since the oil has to seep in between parts that aren't disassembled.

Any gun oil that meets military standards is a good place to start. And Royco CLP is available for around $80 a gallon online.

BSW
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Old June 20, 2015, 09:56 PM   #23
Fishbed77
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I've never had nor seen the need to use anything other than Breakfree CLP.
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Old June 20, 2015, 10:09 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishbed77
I've never had nor seen the need to use anything other than Breakfree CLP.
Me neither, I love that stuff.
I am intrigued by the motor oil/ATF mix though.
But what stops me is the fact that new oils no longer contain much, if any, zinc.
And any good gearhead will tell ya that zinc is what protected any engine parts that slide metal to metal together under pressure. Like on a flat tappet camshaft.

So on my older engines, I add a bottle of STP, or just use an oil like Brad Penn that has high quantities of zinc.

Any of you motor oil gun lubers take that into consideration? Not nitpicking, just wondering.
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Old June 20, 2015, 10:24 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by briansmithwins View Post
Self loading firearms and Otto cycle engines are both heat engines that use reciprocating motion to do work.
As an aside, real trucks do not have Otto cycles.

While gun related lubricants do perform well, they are expensive, relatively speaking.

I've shifted to a synthetic automotive/tractor grease in lieu of petroleum base gun greases. I have found the petroleum evaporates over time leaving just the clay behind which gums up the firearm's action. The synthetic seems to maintain its lubrication properties for longer periods of time.

Gun lubricants probably do work better than automotive lubricants.
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