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Another ultrasonic cleaning thread. Oh, joy.

Discussion in 'Shooting Gear and Storage' started by Mauser lover, Jun 22, 2019.

  1. Mauser lover

    Mauser lover Member

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    First off, let me say this: I do not intend to clean brass with an ultrasonic cleaner.

    I've been looking at the RCBS Ultrasonic Case Cleaner 2 (the bigger one) and contemplating purchasing one for cleaning gun parts; pistols/revolvers, as well as bolts and bolt carriers and miscellaneous rifle parts. Particularly that pesky black powder stuff that has to be cleaned after shooting or the whole thing will rust to pieces!

    I understand that an ultrasonic cleaner isn't ideal. I understand that it is not a magic box that I put dirty guns into and they come out sanitary and sparkling. However, I do expect some reduction in labor time.

    There is one thing that bothers me though. How do you all (those of you who actually use ultrasonic cleaners) get the water off your guns? Is there a solution out there that has rust inhibitors and lubricants in it so the water isn't an issue? Do you dunk your parts in a bucket of ATF after you clean them? I live in a very humid environment, so this question needs to be settled before I drop $300 or more on this thing.

    Thanks for your experiences!
     
  2. sparkyv

    sparkyv Member

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    Mauser lover, I dunk in fresh water to remove the chemicals/soap, then I use compressed air to blow the part(s) dry then spray on a lubricant, usually silicone oil, then wipe it off. GTG.
     
  3. P5 Guy

    P5 Guy Member

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    Rinse in distilled water, blow dry with heated air, reassembly and lube as needed, wipe with silicone cloth.
     
  4. Mauser lover

    Mauser lover Member

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    What do you guys use to "blow dry with heated air"? Hair dryer? Convection oven?

    Some of the solutions out there (thinking of the RCBS gun cleaner concentrate particularly) say that they contain a rust inhibitor to help avoid rust, but... I'm skeptical of it actually working to prevent rust if it has forty parts water in it to one part concentrate!
     
  5. P5 Guy

    P5 Guy Member

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    DRY compressed air, your compressor needs a good system that drys the air.
    Compressed air can be pretty wet.
     
  6. dh1633pm

    dh1633pm Member

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    I got my cleaning to mostly clean brass, but I have used it mostly to clean parts. It does a good job. Hot water works best with a degreaser. After cleaning, rinse then hand or blow dry depending on part. I find myself using the cleaner more than I thought almost never for brass. Put my entire Ruger Mini trigger group in the cleaner. Did a great job.
     
  7. Doublehelix
    • Contributing Member

    Doublehelix Contributing Member

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    I just bought the Harbor Freight Ultrasonic Cleaner this weekend for the same reason (small gun parts). Very interested in this thread as I had some of the same questions about rust and the proper cleaner to use.
     
  8. rdnktrkr

    rdnktrkr Member

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    One of my harbor freight cleaners has eds red in it for cleaning gun parts, I still use a nylon brush and a patch in the barrel and just wipe everything else down with one of the harbor freight oil soaked micro fiber wipes.
    I remove grips from revolvers and I don't put plastic frames in, I hit the frames with gun scrubber
     
  9. FlSwampRat

    FlSwampRat Member

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    I used to work repairing cameras and we had a large ultrasonic to clean mechanical movie cameras (16mm Bolex, etc. It was a long time ago.) and other fairly large parts. It was in a small cement room on a steel table. We used benzine as it was both a solvent and it left a fine film of oil on things, but, of course, there was a fire danger, hence the room having nothing else in it, a steel door and two large venting fans. Normally there was a lid on it that was tight fitting. For small parts like removable shutters on Graphic cameras, the regular ultrasonic worked fine with a mild soap solution and we'd put the shutter in a small can and put enough benzine in the can to cover the shutter plus about half an inch or so. That benzine was put back in a "dirty but still usable" labelled can whose benzine went into the big cleaner. I'd not recommend the big cleaner routine nowadays, but the smaller one with just a small can of benzine, on a table outdoors for the few minutes you'll actually be cleaning could be workable. Obviously NOT a good idea with optics.
     
  10. Rule3

    Rule3 Member

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    Save your money just buy a large container with a lid and get some solvent of your choice and clean stuff like a parts cleaner.

    Heck buy a bottle of Simple Green spray the stuff and rinse with fresh water. Use Iso alcohol. if you want to be the Green New Deal.

    Gads how do folks clean things before Ultrasonic (like Mechanics)?????

    Pistols revolvers?? What you plan on submerging them?? Take the side plate off spray with GunScrubber (see other thread) let dry. Lube as needed.
     
  11. Jack Ryan

    Jack Ryan Member

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    I wonder if those would clean a suppressor?
     
  12. mcmurry

    mcmurry Member

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    I was never impressed with Simple Green. I used some in an industrial application in a small water blaster to clean parts that had been exposed to various chemicals because it didn't react to said chemicals. I always figured the water pressure did the actual cleaning. When we had our bathroom remodeled, it was recommended that we use it to clean the shower. It doesn't cut soap scum and still allows mold to form in the grout.
     
  13. P5 Guy

    P5 Guy Member

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    Vapor degreasers with tricloreytholine111 (sp?)
     
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  14. Mauser lover

    Mauser lover Member

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    Thanks for moving this. I forgot we had a section for "shooting gear".

    I am also not terribly impressed with Simple Green, but a parts washer is also on my "possibilities" list.

    For my BP revolver, the last time I went and shot it I spent so much time cleaning the thing that it wasn't really that fun to shoot it anymore. I'm hoping that doing the whole ultrasonic thing will help with that. Particularly because I took it down to the last screw and pin (okay, not quite. I left the barrel in) to clean absolutely everything. I'm hoping that I can get it fairly clean (at least to the point of not being covered in corrosive residue, neutralizing at least that) without taking it down quite *that* far. I'm hoping that by taking the grips off, cylinder out, and maybe trigger guard off (Remington 1858 wannabe) I will be able to get it "good enough". But then the water will be an issue, because it's going to be tough to dry all that out.

    Of course I'd use it on other stuff as well. Like a suppressor.
     
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  15. Jack Ryan

    Jack Ryan Member

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    I'd like to read a review of how well it works for both of those.
     
  16. Mauser lover

    Mauser lover Member

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    So... how loud are these things supposed to be? I switched the thing on and nearly jumped out of my skin at the violent issuance of annoying sound that instantly assaulted my ears!

    Is that the "ultrasonic" thing going on? This thing is loud and the pitch is awful!

    We'll see if it works in half an hour! It'd better work really well to put up with that sound...
     
  17. Mauser lover

    Mauser lover Member

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    So... it works. Probably too well.

    Don't know if it was the RCBS Weapons Cleaner Concentrate, or if it was the ultrasonic thingy in itself, but it sure took the paint right off my FEG PA-63 frame!

    Otherwise... it did work. It wasn't magic, but it got by far the worst off of everything.

    On the other hand, I may have just figured out the one overarching reason that NATO won the cold war. Sort of. Our finish on our pistols is superior.
     
  18. tightgroup tiger

    tightgroup tiger Member

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    I put a second glass container in mine and put my gun parts in the second container. I use Hoppes to clean my guns parts by dumping it in the second container and having water around the jar.
    I take mine out on the patio or use it in the garage when I'm cleaning gun parts. Obviously, don't use it in the kitchen.

    You can fill the cleaner up 2/3 of full of water and set a mason jar in it and put the hoppes in it and fill it to the top if you want. I use a pickle jar for pistol barrels. The sound waves will transfer right through glass and conduct up through your solution with out loosing any effect.

    I take the cylinder assys out of my ruger and clean the whole assy in Hoppes in the ultrasonic.

    That keeps your ultrasonic cleaner clean to also use on your wife's jewelry if you want.

    I have some of the stamped aluminum disposable trays for picnics and such that I use for small pistols

    It's funny, when Hoppes is heated it drys pretty fast when you pull it out and blued surfaces look like brand new again.
    I also clean my shower head in it with CLR and that really cleans them out.

    I still clean all my pistol cases in it with Lemi-shine and dawn. one heaping tea spoon for every two litres and a squirt of dawn. As long as you clean your brass with it everytime you shoot them, they will always come out clean in about 16 minutes.

    The citric acid will combine with any lead that is cleaned out of the cases like the burnt primer mix and change it to a different compound that is non-toxic.
    The dirty water can be dumped down the drain in your house or down the toilet and not hurt anything.

    Everyone has their own way to clean their cases and their guns. This is the way I have deep cleaned my for some time now.

    I can't afford multiple cleaners so I learned how to use one to do it all.

    And paint doesn't survive in the ultrasonic cleaner with the heater on. So watch that.
     
  19. icanthitabarn

    icanthitabarn Member

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    I keep mine filled with Brownells Solvent. It just sat, unused for a yr. after being gifted an unwanted unit. and It was, still full. Last weekend I cleaned a few pistols. They came out and seemed almost dry, after setting a few minutes. They were very clean and got some oil drizzled down the triggers and hammers and elsewhere.




    PS There was a thin, o-ring, type seal in the lid that didnt dissolve but was totally distroyed
     
  20. earlthegoat2

    earlthegoat2 Member

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    I use mine to clean brass, carburetors, Remington 870/7600/etc trigger groups, glasses, brass,

    I generally use a 40:1 ratio of water to concentrated glass cleaner that you get at HD. I use compressed air (sorta dry. I have a filter and coil style moisture separator)then a hot air/heat gun to dry. Pretty nice.
     
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