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Old October 5, 2007, 12:23 AM   #1
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Best grease for actions/slides?

What should I be looking for when purchasing gun grease? I have seen too many on the shelves today to know what to use. All these choices have just confused the gray matter. Should I be using different types for semi-autos, bolts, levers, long guns and pistols? Or can I just go out to the barn and use the sticky old wheel bearing goop? It says all purpose.


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Old October 5, 2007, 01:03 AM   #2
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If I use grease, it's Tetra Gun Grease, a white flouropolymer grease.

But, I only use grease on my M-1A and on the roller block of my CZ-52 pistol. For most applications, either a light oil/CLP or dry lubricant will be more appropriate.

Grease has the advantage of not migrating or getting slung around and providing long term protection from metal/metal contact, which is why it's great for Garand-type actions. High-tech greases (like Tetra) provide better film strength to protect things like the roller/cam in a CZ-52.

The down side is, greases also suspend all the carbon and nastiness if they're anywhere near the chamber. Also, some greases are thick enough to slow down the action of an automatic. I had a nice, tight Springfield 1911 that would not tolerate grease, but worked flawlessly with Rem oil, Breakfree, Gun Butter (although it didn't "coat" the stainless well), and even Rem Dry-lube.

What's your application?
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Old October 5, 2007, 01:11 AM   #3
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Oh oh!

-Geez! Here we go! That's like asking what the best beer is!!!

Seriously, however, I know that some custom gun builders recommend petroleum jelly, of all things!! 'Course those weapons don't see as many rounds go through them as some of ours do. I'm sure they never have a round cook off 'cuz the weapon is so hot.

I think the secret of using gun grease is to use very little. Anyway, grease is a blessing and a curse for obvious reasons of its inate lubricity and its propensity to collect filth that can cause wear and tear on your weapon. It needs to be flushed off frequently and reapplied.

There are some dry lubes out there (KG makes some I want to try; get them from KG on the web or from Brownells and maybe others) that consist of (I believe):
--- an extra-super-fine Teflon powder that goes on dry and bonds to the steel.
---a wet-base Molybdenum lube that drys quickly and bonds molecularly to the steel. Supposedly it can be built-up with multiple applications.

Also, I was thinking of trying a high grade CV joint grease. When I say high grade, I DON'T mean this goop you get from Wally-World or the car parts store. I'll go to the VW or Mercedes dealer and get their branded product. It will be probably a lithium/moly blend and stinks to high heavens and will almost not come off your hands. Won't break down or flow off and remains stable under ultra high pressure, 1000 degree F temp. I wouldn't try to substitute it for cheaper, generic substance. But, it is still a grease and needs to be removed and replaced fairly often under high usage conditions.

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Old October 5, 2007, 01:16 PM   #4
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For steel on steel sliding contact, a thin moly based grease is about as good as it gets. Moly should never be used on rolling surfaces.

For sliding contact where one or both surfaces are not steel, any light grease is good, I typically use white lithium grease for steel on aluminum contact.
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Old October 7, 2007, 01:44 AM   #5
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"Seriously, however, I know that some custom gun builders recommend petroleum jelly, of all things!!"

Vaseline has water in it's make-up, a fact I learned the hard way. It will rust whatever steel gun parts it comes in contact with.
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Old October 7, 2007, 08:38 PM   #6
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"Moly should never be used on rolling surfaces."

JohnKSa: I never heard this. The arcania of lubrication can be complex and interesting to some so I just have to know why.
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Old October 7, 2007, 09:58 PM   #7
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I've seen several sources report that moly can build up irregularly in roller/ball bearings and cause failure or seizing.

Interestingly enough, I did a search looking for a cite and found several recommendations of moly grease for ball bearings. I don't know if those are special formulations, if ball bearings have been changed to avoid this problem or if my original source was incorrect. If you poke around on the web, you can find both opinions...

Here's one:

"Second, not all of the gooey black "moly" greases really have molybdenum in them, and if they do, you probably don't want them. If you examine the container closely, you will find a few that say "not for use in wheel bearings." That's because a true moly grease is suitable for *sliding* contact, like in plain bearings, and not *rolling* contact, like in roller or ball bearings. A true moly grease has chunks in it, feels sorta like sand, and it will eventually destroy wheel bearings."

I don't really agree that moly grease has to feel like sand, there are some with VERY fine moly particles that can not be felt, however this cite does agree with some other sources I've seen stating that true moly greases shouldn't be used on rolling surface contact.
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Old October 8, 2007, 12:19 AM   #8
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I have been using Mil-Comm TW25B with great success. I started trying it on my AR-15. I then began using it on my 3 870 shotguns. I now use it on all my firearms wherever there is sliding type contact.

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Old October 8, 2007, 10:42 AM   #9
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I use Super Lube, a synthetic grease with Teflon in it. It is not as thick as some greases (almost like very thick oil), and it coats parts well. You can buy small tubes with a needle applicator for just putting a spot on small parts or into holes.

I just recently picked up a tube of Mili-Tec grease. We'll have to see about that one.
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Old October 12, 2007, 09:26 AM   #10
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The "Gun Greases" are pure marketing. Few if any "Gun Grease" sellers make their own. I know of at least one expensive grease seller repacking industrial synthetic base grease from 55Gal drums into 2cc syringes, at a 100,000% markup (give or take). God bless!

I agree with the above posters re. using good oil, and using grease only when called for, eg. rollers/cams on the M1A or Garand.
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