“This one time when I was pinned down behind my desk while filing papers for the chief of deans of my political science program; I was quickly made aware of the shortcomings of civilian firearms because I didnt use CLP, man.”
I am not going to argue the benefit of lubrication, cleaning and firearms care. I am well aware that there are literally hundreds of thousands of firearms owners who rarely if ever clean their firearms. In fact there are many currently popular “bloggers” who I know from experience that cannot even field strip an AR or Glock handgun let alone clean it. But, this article is not a tell all regarding these idiots who have so many hooked with their lies, it is to help you the realist find lubricants/cleaners that work best in the environments you find yourself in. The following review is a direct result of tests completed or engaged in by the author.
Because weight is essential in a go bag or survival situation the object of the testing which led to this review was to find a working lubricant/cleaner that functions well in hot, dry, cold and even occasionally wet environments. (More frequently in hot, dry and dusty environments) Several brands and types were tested and disposed of following issues experienced.
- CLP products – tested Frog Lube and Break Free
- Rem Oil – aerosol and non
- Ballistol – non aerosol
- Slip 2000
All were tested over the course of three years, 2009- 2012.
The test beds were selected from several common firearms, Glock 19 (3 different ones), Keltec/ Ruger/ Mak style micro pistols, Several varieties of the AR platform, two different bolt guns and an SKS.
Between applications of said lubricant to necessary points of contact on the firearms tested they were cleaned completely dry with no residuals showing up on contact with white cotton cloth.
Regular use during windy conditions in high desert environments along with no wind, dry, excess heat (triple digit days and shooting extended amounts) and cold as well as rain and snow were tested in.
- CLP products – worked well until faced with a somewhat dirty action after which they tended to gum up the works and collect dirt in spades versus repelling it, they also did not work very well in hot runs, eg., over a hundred rounds expended quickly in an already hot environment
- Rem Oil was similar to CLP, a decent product, however, it became stiffer the hotter it got and eventually evaporated completely causing the need for additional application during drills.
- Ballistol – so far it is the best with no issues with excess loss due to heat and friction. It works well during cold weather AND acts as a solvent to continually free powder residue and even dust from where other lubes tended to hold it in.
- Slip 2000, honestly this one is simply too expensive to continue using regularly. Especially considering it tended to become thicker during colder weather versus the far less expensive Ballistol or Tri-Flow.
- Tri-Flow, a really solid lubricant that withstood extremely high temperatures and long term shooting without evaporating completely. Sadly, it is only a lubricant and does not also include a truly solid solvent in the mix.
My opinion is that you are better off purchasing Ballistol in large containers as a non-aerosol. Empty out the previous lubes and refill containers with this. It works well as a cleaner, lubricant and even a fire promoter in an emergency. It functions when it is cold, hot and regardless cleanliness of the firearm.
As an aside, if you live where snow is up too your neck and temperatures are sub zero several months out of the year, a simple axle grease will work quite well! (Or bear grease if you plan on being attacked by them and are forced to use your building collapsing handguns.)
You have probably gathered I do not enjoy snow, there are several reasons and none of them you need to know.
Free the mind and the body will follow