Old Posts - Cleaning & Lubrication

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Old Posts - Cleaning & Lubrication

Post by Zeliard »

Consolidation of old forum posts. Various authors, as listed.

Note: This has been edited, in that I removed short questions, quotes and the bore guide stuff (sticking with lubrication & cleaning only). If that's not cool let me know and I'll repost as-is.


[/b]Burner says[/b]
Uncle Sam used Lubriplate, I use Miltech, But any name brand gun grease will work. Some will last longer than others.

mike 55
After being an armourer for many years I have found that the amount of shooting the avergeguy does is nothing compared to being in a combat setting, that includes the mud & grime. I there fore would recommed that the best & easyest & cleanist way to fir a semi or full auto weapon is to use "Breakfree" or something that would compare, under no circumstance use WD10-40 at any time. You will find for the amount of rounds you will be firing the breakfree will work excellent & will keep you weapon clean. This is also used by one of the major firearms Mfg. of semi & full auto weapons whee I learned to be an armourer.

(Breakfree / CLP) Sorry I just don't like the stuff. It should be ok just shake it up well.

One caution with BreakFree...while the new stuff is great, the BreakFree that is older than say 1-2 years, not sure when the product improvement was done, has a tendency to settle some of the essential ingredients to the bottom and keep it there despite shaking (gets worse the older the stuff is). According to my gunsmith and verified by several military armorers, the old stuff would never mix well no matter how much you shook it, therefore it didn't clean, lubricate, and protect as well as it should.
If you have BreakFree that is over 1-2 years old I would recommend buying a small bottle of the new BreakFree CLP and try it. You still need to shake it up good, but now it mixes 100% and you get a great product. I have been using the new stuff exclusively and love it.

Use grease where the M1 requires grease. Breakfree will lube up an AR just fine, but you want grease for the M1.

Best bet is to go to the Militec-1 website (web search will get you there in a hurry) and ask for a free sample. They will send you a small bottle of Militec-1, which is great stuff, but they also send a tub of Militec grease. They send enough grease to last 10 years.
In a pinch, use cartridge grease like you lube your truck with. GM Lubriplate is great and works good on car door hinges and about anything else you can imagine too. They actually recommend Lubriplate for the M1.

This is something I found that may be of interest:

Image Missing

Many a Marine Recruit got lumps on his head when he insisted (to his disbelieving Drill Instructor) that he had cleaned and lubricated his faithful "M1 Gun" properly even though his ejected brass was flying well off to the right and to the rear.

A properly lubricated M1 will almost always eject the brass to the 1 – 2:30 (o’clock) position of the shooter (the direction of the muzzle indicating 12:00 o’clock). The dirtier (and less well lubricated) the rifle becomes, the further to the rear the brass will be thrown!

This allows you to perform a sort of self-diagnostic analysis if your rifle seems to be acting up. Before you head for the armorer in a state of panic if you are having trouble with feeding, extraction or ejection, be sure to "check your brass"! This little truism may well have gotten lost in the "mists of time", but for the dedicated "M1 Gun aficionado", it’s a piece of trivia well worth remembering.

NOTE: For those of you wondering what the best lubricant for the M1 is, remember that in the jungles during WWII, the M1s were occasionally locking up during torrential downpours. The "fix" turned out to be a marvelous lubricant called "Lubriplate". This pale yellow stuff was issued in little "itty-bitty" plastic containers that would fit in the butt well of the M1. Lubriplate is still one of the all time great lubes and is available from Brownells (among other places). My personal favorite is a lube that came along in the latter days of the M1 (and also works great on the M14/M1A). The stuff is called "Plastilube". It's a dark brown lubricant (originally issued in the same "Lubriplate type container") that is sorta' like "Lubriplate with steroids" and would be my lubricant of choice for either rifle. This is absolutely fantastic stuff, won't wash off in the rain and lasts longer than it should be expected to. The only source (that I am personally aware of) for "Plastilube" is from Scott Duff (check his page out from the Gun Talk Links).


One should clean his, or her, rifle at the end of the stage, the course, or the day. I don't know about combat, but those who did, and taught me, claim to have cleaned their weapons whenever the opportunity presented itself, and those who failed to do so lived to regret it. But not long. A metal oil bottle, similar to those issued with the K98, will hold enough dilute detergent to clean an M1, just after firing, and can be carried in a pocket, or a compass pouch. Dried off, the bore and action should be oiled and the bearing surfaces greased as shown above. We're talking minutes here, and following the routine is easier than trying to remember when one last cleaned his, or her, rifle.


I just posted on cmp forum and was wondering what you folks thought about copper removers...

I have passed several patches (50) through my var barrel (new to me) and continue to see green I am using hoppes9 and CLP my local gunsmith said to use ammonia I tried it and it works but still not very efficiently.

the following products were highly recommended


barns cr-10

and wipe out bore foam

What do y'all use... and how often... should I even be concerned with a little copper build up? after how many rounds should I use these solutions.

I don't want to cause any premature wear on my pristine barrel as I would love to hand this rifle over to my son someday! he just turned 1.


I would suggest maybe having a rifle holder of some sort so you can lay the thing horizontal and upside down for cleaning. Then perhaps those strong cleaners will not run into the gas port or the receiver. I guess that as long as the patches come out green or blue, there is copper in the bore. I got one of those electronic bore cleaners that you put a solution in the bore, and then a metal rod. It is supposed to clean down to the bare metal, but I have not used it yet. On the Garand, you would probably need to take off the cylinder and plug the gas port in the barrel, with that. In normal cleaning, I would just be careful and use a bore guide on the rod, so you don't rub the muzzle when cleaning. And don't leave any ammonia cleaner in the bore for a real long time. Should be neutralized with regular bore cleaner I suspect. Just keep at it till the patches come out clean, and don't forget the chamber. I also use JB bore cleaner paste to clean up cruddy barrels, but you better clean all of that out with solvent after you are done with it.


As a side note, my VAR barrel has a real love for copper fouling, too, more so than other rifle I own.

I don't have a miracle cure for you. I uses Hoppe's, a brass bore brush and non-embedding bore paste like the J&B mentioned below. The VAR takes more time and elbow grease than any other I have.

I have some Sweet's on order and will post results as available.


I was under the impression that an EBC would not work due to the Garand's gas cylinder and subsequent "bleed" hole in barrel? or does it just not work on the last few inches?


Well I suppose you could use an electric with the Garand, if you took the gas cylinder off and somehow plugged the gas vent in the barrel with something. Something that would stand up to the chemicals in the cleaner. Or comprimise and clean up to the hole, leaving a bit of the end of the barrel uncleaned? Did I say bore guide, well I meant one of those brass things that goes over the steel cleaning rod, and slides up and down on it. It is brass and it sort of comes to a point, so that you slide it down against the muzzle, and it prevents the cleaning rod from touching the muzzle, and pretty much centered in the bore. You can get them in those blister packs at most gun stores along with the cleaning jags, and brushes, mops, etc. that go on the rods. Has a knurled rim on it. I am not gonna post a picture, you will know it when you see it. Better get one as you clean semiautos from the muzzle end. You clean bolt guns by taking out the bolt and putting the patch and rod in the rear, so muzzle wear is not a real problem, unless you are lazy like me, and sometimes clean from the muzzle end during storage inspections.


Lubri-Plate (sometimes called "white grease") can be found in most GM dealer's parts dept. I've heard before about not using WD-40 or silicone sprays on guns.

I lucked onto a gal. can of old mil spec "artillery" grease being thrown away at an old trade school. The real stuff in an olive drab can. looks just like the grease in tiny cans you find at gun shows for $0.50 ea. Has the govt. stenciled classification markings on the can. Neat find.

Lubriplate WILL semi-harden over time or the heat of intense use. It's not great for long term storage.


Here's a nice chart to see where to apply grease to the M1:



The picture from FM 23-5 neglects to mention 2 places that benefit greatly from greasing - the clamping recess of the rear receiver legs (or the bottom of the trigger guard lugs), and the surface of the lower band where it mates with the stock ferrule. (Reduces wear of the ferrule and dampens more stock vibrations). YMMV :mrgreen:


I use a plastic syringe for applying grease on my M1's. Really allows good control of the grease. I have been using Lubriplate for many years, but recently picked up a tube of Miltech grease and applied it to the last M1 that I acquired, but haven't had a chance to shoot it yet....


I use fingers on brake jobs and any firearms. The high temp moly brake grease has worked well for me in both capacities.

Fingers are good for wrenching and cooking, and they clean up quickly. I personally don't want any cotton swabs in my duck confit.
Proud alumni of Transylvanian Polygnostic University. "Know enough to be afraid."

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"Send lawyers, guns and money." -Warren Zevon
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Re: Old Posts - Cleaning & Lubrication

Post by jones0430 »

The Plastilube is great stuff. We called it goose grease. Wouldn't freeze up in the winters of Colorado either.
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Re: Old Posts - Cleaning & Lubrication

Post by Gunny »

I've always used Lubriplate for many years with great success
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Re: Old Posts - Cleaning & Lubrication

Post by Smokey »

Thanks for posting this. One of my "pet peeves" is the "dry is good" fad (and stupidity).

Several years ago at a DCM match a new guy showed up with a Garand. It was dry as a bone. He probably used a whole can of carburetor cleaner to remove every trace of oil and grease, as he was going to be "with the big boys". Right at the first timed fire stage his rifle froze up. He was shocked. We shut the line down, field stripped his rifle and gave it a thorough greasing and oiling right on the line. The look on the guy's face was priceless; shock and horror ("you shouldn't do that"). When the rifle was reassembled we restarted the match and his rifle worked the way a Garand should. We patiently explained how and why the rifle should be lubricated, and why the bore and chamber needs a thin film of oil. He was still in a state of shock but did admit his rifle worked a lot better.
Arguing with someone who denounces reason is like administering medicine to a corpse.
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