View Full Version : Unusual barrel fouling

May 15, 2012, 04:13 PM
I have had good results cleaning old and neglected firearms found at gun shows and pawn shops. This one has me at wit's end.

Remington 510 Targetmaster, .22 caliber, 1942 vintage. After cleaning, I found the walnut stock and all metal parts to be in very good original condition. The exception is an unknown crud deposit about 7 inches long measured from the muzzle. Grooves are filled and lands in this portion of the are barely visible. Hoppes #9, Kroil, and Lead Remover have been tried. The barrel was soaked overnight in each of these solutions, brushed with a phosphor bronze brush, and swabbed with patches. Black residue on the brush and patches. Tried to scrape the mystery fouling from the grooves nearest the muzzle with a steel probe but nothing was removed. So far the lands are becoming a bit more pronounced but the going is very slow.

Any educated or experienced guesses about what this fouling is and how it can be removed?

May 15, 2012, 05:29 PM
I'm guessing it is lead fouling baked on with powder residue. I think you are just goint to have to worry it of like you've been doing. Great rifle by the way - I've got the 512 (same action with a tube magazine).

May 15, 2012, 05:34 PM
Powder fouling and lube residue that has varnished, from the sounds of it. If it really needs to come out, try a solvent like Hoppe's. And it is a good idea to not scratch at the bore with anything metallic, rifling is only about .002" deep on a 22 rimfire and old rimfire barrel steel is very soft.

May 16, 2012, 11:31 AM
Plug the barrel, fill with hope's and let it sit for a month. As you said, the solvent does something, just takes time. The crud had 70 years to build up ;)

May 16, 2012, 05:24 PM
Set the barrel in a capped PVC tube filled with enough solvent to cover the crud. Kroil has not worked too well after 48 hours of soaking. Tonight I'll immerse the barrel in Hoppe's 9 for another two days and hope for good results.

By the way, most of the barrel is sparkling clean. Just those pesky 7 inches from at the muzzle end.

May 16, 2012, 06:38 PM
Have you considered that the spot may be corrosion, not fouling.

A good way to clean a badly fouled bore is to buy a jar of JB Bore Paste from Brownell's.
This is a special non-embedding super fine abrasive used by benchrest shooters to deep clean bores. This will remove anything in there that can be removed, and will not harm the bore.

May 16, 2012, 06:45 PM
Have you tried Hydrogen Peroxide?
It will dissolve lead pretty good and fairly quickly, too.

May 16, 2012, 06:59 PM
I did that to my 10/22 before and waited so long to clean it that the rod pushed a plug of lead into the bore. The way I cleaned it was to plug the bbl and fill with Hoppes for a couple days, come home after work, take a couple swipes at it and get some out, refill and do more tomorrow or Friday. It took a couple weeks to come clean.

Personally, I wouldn't use the JB paste until after it was clean and very sparingly. It prolly has a rough spot in the bore catching lead in that one spot.

James K
May 16, 2012, 11:33 PM
If that crud is 7" or so from the muzzle, it might not have anything to do with firing the gun. A gun stored in a closet or some place like that seems attractive to certain kinds of insects which make their nests in the barrel. They can make a real mess that is hard to clean out and can eat away the steel.


Bill DeShivs
May 17, 2012, 01:59 AM
Bugs don't eat steel.

May 17, 2012, 04:59 AM
I inherited an old .22 revolver that was leaded so badly you could not tell it was rifled. The previous owner must not have noticed it was out of time by about a quarter caliber... I wound up wrapping a lead-away cloth around an old bore brush and working it through many dozens of times.

May 17, 2012, 06:39 AM
Try soaking in Ed's Red.

May 17, 2012, 08:00 AM
Measure the outside of the barrel where the rifling appears "fouled". I have seen a lot of .22 rifles with bulged barrels that appear like what you are describing.

May 17, 2012, 08:20 AM
Try soaking in Ed's Red.
Seems to work better for me than Hoppes #9

May 17, 2012, 08:31 AM
Bugs don't eat steel.

That's true, but bugs nest in tubes. I found a .30-30 barrel once that had been a nursing home for dirt daubers. The mud plugs hold moisture in the barrel. When I finally got it cleaned out, there was almost no rifling in the end of the bore. About the last four inches as I recall. We shortened the barrel, re-crowned and it turned into a shooter.

May 17, 2012, 09:35 AM
24 hours in Hoppe's 9, about 20 brush strokes, and the lands are beginning to emerge. The rinse water from cleaning brushes contains extremely fine black material. This black material results from soaking in either Hoppe's or Lead Cleaner.

In my opinion the barrel has no bulge because you can feel the restricting crud when passing either a brush or patch through that area of the barrel. Plus my sensitive little finger tips feel no external bulge. I am leaning to the idea that the rifle was stored barrel down and somehow a portion of the barrel was fouled.

Thanks for all the replies and help.

May 17, 2012, 09:43 AM
Tuzo, keep this up and you may be done in a week or so. :)

May 17, 2012, 10:46 AM
Try Bore Tech Eliminator.

May 17, 2012, 02:37 PM
Try Bore Tech Eliminator.
What he said, but gt the rimfire version.

May 21, 2012, 01:28 PM
No more buying chemicals (suggested and not suggested), no more pushing and pulling bore brushes (wore out 11 of them), no more sleep deprivation due to worry about a fouled barrel, I have recognized a point of diminishing returns and surrendered to a superior force.

Even soaked in Naval Jelly for two days. Beyond a little black residue, no mystery fouling has been removed. Reached a break even point 3 days ago signaled by almost no black residue. I have no idea what has fouled about 7 inches of this barrel. Whatever it is, it is refractory and impervious to all removal efforts. Must be an unknown space age material.

Thanks for all comments and suggestions. A replacement barrel will cost about the same as my investment in cleaning supplies.

May 22, 2012, 07:26 AM
A replacement barrel will cost about the same as my investment in cleaning supplies.
Tuzo I feel your Pain… Have done that on a lot of things not just guns. It’s like poker, to much in the pot to quit and not enough in your pocket to stay. . . :(