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Best Gun Oil & Grease [Tested]: Lube it Up!

Gun oil is a necessary, but often mystifying and perplexing part of owning a firearm.  

Oil where the barrel goes through the front of the slide itself

Some will say you should never ever use such-and-such. Others will tell you only idiots use anything but such-and-such.

We know it’s confusing. We’re here to help.

I'm from the internet meme
You’re in good hands here folks.

We tested, evaluated, and finally narrowed down the best gun oils and lubricants out there. We’re going to go over everything we learned, and maybe drop a little knowledge about the whole thing along the way.

Curious about what we found?  

Need some help picking the best gun oils and lubricants? (Gun lubricants, that is. This isn’t that type of site).

Wink

By the end, you’ll know everything about gun oil…and the best one for you.

If you’re looking for all-in-one kits…check out Best Gun Cleaning Kits where we got the most popular ones and put them through the test.

All Gun Cleaning Kits
All Gun Cleaning Kits

Table of Contents

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Why You Need Gun Oil

Modern firearms, especially combat-focused ones, can run for a really long time without any maintenance at all, but that doesn’t mean you should.

could-should
This goes for cloning dinosaurs as well.

You wouldn’t drive your car for tens of thousands of miles without an oil change, and you wouldn’t let your house become too filthy to live in.

Just like your car, your gun needs an oil change every so often too, and just like your house, you have to clean things up when it gets dirty.

For the full rundown on cleaning say, an AR-15, be sure to check out our guide to get an idea of how the whole process goes.

This is the same process you’ll use for all your firearms, it’s just the disassembly and where you lube that differs from one gun to another.

(Be sure to check your owner’s manual for the disassembly procedure and recommended lubrication points of your specific firearm). 

We also have a general cleaning and lubrication guide for firearms if you need a refresher.

Cleaning PAP M92
Cleaning PAP M92

Basically, you start with a solvent to break everything loose, then a wire bore brush to scrub everything out. Then follow up with some more solvent to make sure everything is cleaned, followed by some sort of protectant.

I know, it’s a pain to clean your guns, especially if you shoot often, but it really is something that will extend the life of your firearms and will keep them working when you need them most.

Need to clean your Glock? We got you covered there too!

Remington 870 needs a scrub down? John can help with that!

Types of Gun Lubes and Cleaning Products

Now, there are a few different types of gun oils/lubes/solvents out there.

First, you have dedicated products that do just one job, such as a dedicated solvent or a dedicated oil.

Then you have three-in-one products that act as a solvent, protective oil, and lubrication all in one.

Oil the rails of the frame

Traditional wisdom says to avoid these products where possible, as most three-in-one products tend to either not offer the corrosion and rust protection of traditional oil, or they tend to run.

While that is true, and like most things a “do it all” product isn’t going to be as good as a product that has one job it does well, most modern CLP (Clean, Lube, Protect) products will work just fine for the average shooter — especially when combined with another product here or there.

After the triple-action CLP products that do it all, you have dedicated oils like the famous and beloved (for good reason) Hoppe’s #9 oils that are just for lubricating.

Editor's Pick
10
at Amazon

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Editor's Pick

These oils, when combined with a proper solvent, are an excellent way to protect and lubricate your firearm.

They’re also…kinda expensive. You can get by with regular ole motor oil in a pinch, or if you want something cheap.  

In fact, I know of at least a few high-speed, low-drag operator types in the military and professional door-kickers in law enforcement who all swear by 5W-20 motor oil.

motor oil (Auto Guide
(Photo: Auto Guide)

Now, these are people running M4s and actual honest-to-God machine guns with at least the capability of full-auto fire, so they’re not exactly what I’d call typical users. But if that sort of thing matters to you, it’s worth noting.  

It also means that if you’re ever stuck in the zombie apocalypse and have to keep your rusty, trusty SHTF rifle running, you can get by on some good ole motor oil from your zombified neighbors minivan.

off-road minivan
I’m just assuming that unless your minivan looks like this, you aren’t making it past day three of the zombie apocalypse.  Sorry.

Grease is the final option for keeping your firearm from frictioning itself to death, and it’s another option for keeping your firearm running smoothly.  

It’s a bit thicker than your typical oils, and it can attract grime if you’re not careful. This will, of course, make your gun run worse, but it can also last a very long time. And it doesn’t tend to run like some of the thinner oils out there.

That’s because most grease is just a thickened oil with some kind of polymer or silicone added to it to help it not attract dust, dirt, and carbon and to improve lubricity (yes it’s a real word).

A good example of gun-centric grease would be Tetra Gun 004B11.

Three-In-One versus Oil versus Grease

So, which one is the best?  

Like most things, it comes down to preference and what trade-offs you’re willing to accept. In general, there are pros and cons whichever way you go.

In the end, whatever you use is probably fine, especially if it seems to work for you.

I know you probably came here expecting me to tell you to use this product with that product, and then maybe chant this one particular Latin phrase over the gun, and then it would run for a thousand years.

And there’s a shit ton of people out there who will tell you that this product or that product or this other product is the undisputed best thing out there, and it only costs *some totally unreasonable amount*.

Gold bullion with money on table close up
You don’t have to take a second mortgage out or anything.

In the end, you have to decide what you’re looking for, and how much effort vs cost you’re willing to accept.

Are you looking for one product that may very well last you a lifetime and will probably do everything you need it to, even if it won’t do it as well as other, more expensive products? Get a can of Ballistol or Break-Free CLP, call it a day.

9
at Amazon

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

If you’re prepping for the apocalypse or otherwise have a bunch of firearms you want to bury in the desert and dig up in working order later. (I’m not here to judge, but this is in no way meant to be legal advice) go with a nice grease.

Are you an average shooter who wants to spend a little more to take the best care of your gun? Maybe start with a solvent, a dedicated lubricating oil, and then wipe the gun down with a good protective oil.

Remember, you’re very unlikely to ruin a gun with any relatively sane thing you put on it, you just might find it doesn’t get as clean, or it develops a bit of surface rust, or it gums up faster. In that case, change up what you’re doing.

Try new things.  

Look for a better way of doing things. I think you’ll find that the people with the best setups are the ones that are constantly changing what they do and using the best products on the market — not the guys that heard you should only use Ballistol back in the ’60s and ran with that knowledge like it was the one true path to firearms nirvana.  

In short, try a few things, spend a little too much money, and figure out what you like best, and what works best with your level of gun use and abuse, and your budget.

Now if you need a place to start your search, here’s where you should be looking.

Best Traditional Gun Oil

These products are dedicated lubricants specifically designed for firearms use.  

Does that really mean anything?

I dunno. Nobody does. There’s a lot of marketing hocus pocus surrounding everything firearms-related, but especially gun oil, which isn’t regulated like motor oil and machine oil. They don’t have to really test it and put meaningful numbers on the bottle for you.

snake oil
Lots of gun oil is more snake oil than anything I’d put on a firearm.

Not to say there aren’t excellent products out there.  Products like…

Hoppe’s #9 Lubricating Oil

Good ole Hoppe’s #9 (pronounced “hops” for those unfamiliar) is always going to be a part of the conversation when you start talking about gun oils, and for good reason.

Editor's Pick
10
at Amazon

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Editor's Pick

This old standby is great for lubricating and protecting your firearm, and it won’t gum, harden, or evaporate unless you bake it in a kiln. Protip: don’t bake your gun in a kiln. Especially if you’re a Glock owner.

melted glock
No, I don’t know why they did it, I just know that it’s not a good idea.

The only problem with it is it may run a little bit, but the precision applicator on most bottles means that you’ll have an easier time putting it just where you want it.

Also, it smells a little, which may be a good or bad thing.

What do you think of Hoppe’s? Rate it below!

Readers' Ratings

4.92/5 (816)

Your Rating?

Best Three-In-One Gun Oil

Three-in-one gun oils are for the shooter that is just looking to spend as little time cleaning and as much time shooting as possible.  

If you’re looking for one product that does it all, you’re in luck because that’s exactly what these products do.

Break-Free CLP

If Hoppe’s #9 is the standard for oils, Break-Free CLP is the standard for 3-in-1s. This stuff will do it all, and do it well — from cleaning fouling from the inside of the gun to protecting a variety of surface materials from rust and corrosion. 

It’s available in an aerosol spray and in wipes that you can find below. 

Most Convenient
7
at Brownells

Prices accurate at time of writing

Prices accurate at time of writing

Most Convenient

Best of all, it works at any sane temperature without gumming or hardening, so no worries about using it in a gun that gets hot under rapid fire.

Finally, it’s been used by militaries around the world for decades, so it’s got a pretty good rep and has been literally battle-tested in some truly inhospitable places.

Honorable Mention: Ballistol. The only problem with Ballistol is that it isn’t a copper or lead solvent. So it may leave tiny bits of either in the rifling of your barrel, requiring a dedicated solvent for those things. It is non-toxic (unlike Break-Free) and just as battle-proven however.

Best Gun Grease

I’ll be honest, I don’t like gun grease unless I’m putting a firearm away for a long time. That said, there’s something to be said for a product that can keep a firearm running for a long time in the field, and under really adverse conditions.

Mil-Comm TW25B Gun Grease

So, if you’re walking off into the bush or are an operator operating operationally in some capacity, or just want a product you don’t have to reapply often (even if you should) Mil-Comm TW25B is for you. It also costs about $20 an ounce, so make sure you know what you’re getting into.

This formulation has the approval of US/NATO forces, and is found anywhere firearms have to keep running, no matter what.

TW25B 1.5 oz
TW25B 1.5 oz

Honorable Mention: Now, if you’re a more sane individual and you want a grease that doesn’t require a second mortgage, Tetra Gun 004B1 is about $5 per ounce and is going to be just as good in almost every possible real-world application, but I did say “best” grease, so we had to talk about the Mil-Comm stuff first.

Conclusion

Remember, you’re very, very, very unlikely to really screw up your gun if you just read the package directions for what you’re using, so feel free to experiment a little.

Oiled cleaning patch
Now get to cleaning!

Find what works best for you. But if you need some guidance, any of the above recommendations should work.

Got any thoughts about gun oil? What’s your preferred product? Let me know in the comments below! Want more? Check out our picks for Best Gun Cleaning Kits.

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74 Leave a Reply

  • Commenter Avatar
    Retired guy

    20 years military, CLP and LSA
    Motor oil in a SHTF emergency

    January 11, 2022 6:16 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Wannie

    Im a TW25b guy. Or lucas oil.

    January 11, 2022 3:06 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Mark Lautenbach

    Is this a troll article?

    January 11, 2022 11:36 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Jeff

    I have been using breakthrough clean technologies products for a couple of years now. I started with their grease and then used their gun oil. Their product keeps my weapons happy.

    January 2, 2022 4:36 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    R.Scott

    Hoppe's is indeed NOT pronounced "hopps". Source from Youtube:
    /watch?v=ebogB1HocRA

    November 30, 2021 3:45 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Talmerian

    Just recently received Black Rambo Carbon Destroyer and Accuracy Oil. I have been very impressed with the cleaning ability, lubing ability and aromatics! I will be trying the copper destroyer and crystal clear optics cleaner at some point.

    September 19, 2021 9:27 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    YMS

    Hoppe's No. 9 gun bore cleaner (seen in the pics) is not a lube!!! Jesus Christ. How could the author and the editor mix it up with Hoppe's gun oil?

    July 11, 2021 8:53 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    TJ

    Good old high temp red lithium soap grease you get at WalMart is all you need for an AK. A $5 can will last generations.

    July 11, 2021 8:42 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Gerry

    It's pronounced Hop-ees. Young people these days....I swear.....

    June 27, 2021 11:17 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Ed

      People who pronounce it Hop-ees also say ambidex-tree-us...

      August 22, 2021 4:55 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    DLloyd

    Much BS without any testing or bonafide recommendations...

    March 27, 2021 8:03 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Mike

    Wd 40 has always work aim avoid hunter and my buddy or to it just works

    February 7, 2021 5:24 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Brandon

    Oh yeah, I will use Motul fully synthetic motor oil in a pinch. I figure if its made to the German standard to handle turbos or superchargers, it can handle some use out in the field. That being said, I wouldn't use motor oil for storage as it is good to keep in mind that motor oil is continually pumped to keep it in place. Great for some quick shooting though.

    January 19, 2021 12:08 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Brandon

    Honerable mention...Eesox. Been using it for years "only on certain parts that I deem CLP to be used on", but it has never failed me and has also beaten out Ballistol as well as Break Free, in a salt water mist test for rust.

    January 19, 2021 12:04 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    JOHN CARTER

    N Pro 7 cleaner....slip 2000 EWL oil....Milcom TW25B grease....EEZOX long term storage.

    December 29, 2020 1:29 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    GARY48

    Weapon Shield. Nothing better.

    October 13, 2020 1:59 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      GlickityGlock

      Just discovered it while digging deep into some online research to better maintain my 10 firearms without having to worry about missing this or that, harsh chems, safe disposal etc. Seems a lot of people are cool with just the bare minimal. Personally I want the most comprehensive care while not having to hunt down a bunch of different clps, degreasers, solvents etc. Used Weapon Shield for the first time last night with my OTIS tactical cleaning kit on an absolutely FILTHY M70 AK... Its over. This is it right here. WEAPON SHIELD

      February 14, 2021 1:38 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Green Eyes

    I just saw an old commercial from Hoppe's and the company pronounces it with 2 syllables, as in Hop-eez. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z3eRGnXhkbk

    October 5, 2020 4:10 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Wade

    I’m seeing Shooter Lube all over the net. Does it live up to the hype?

    July 13, 2020 2:52 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    shorty

    I been using synthetic motor grease (sparingly) on my guns for a short while. Attended many beginners and intermediate courses with pistols and rifles lubed by Valvoline moly-fortified grease and never had any issues. One pound cost me six dollars and will probably last several lifetimes.
    Once tried using white lithium grease on a rifle. Took it to the range, it belched giant smoke clouds in just about every color of the rainbow. made me sick. I was alone so I didnt look stupid, but will never make that mistake again. Also it left yellow hard gunk all over the insides that was a pain to clean off. I had to experiment with several cleaners to get it looking decent again. White lithium is great for moving parts that dont get too hot. Guns get hot.
    I recommend NOT experimenting unless its with a weapon you dont mind damaging.

    June 9, 2020 6:38 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Bull o' the Woods

      Jim Fuller, formerly at Rifle Dynamics, used to recommend white lithium grease for AK47 lubrication.

      June 11, 2020 4:12 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    TiredOfApathy

    TW25B info - Temperature range: – 89°F (- 67°C) to +450°F (+232°C) $17.99 for 1.5oz
    Super Lube info - Temperature range: – 49°F (- 45°C) to +450°F (+232°C) $6.99 for 3oz.
    I've been using Super Lube forever and its never not impressed. While I am not going into the Artic, Afghanistan or a jungle, it is really good for most people's needs. I use a solvent like kroil penetrating oil to break up foiling and after everything i s spotless I place some Super Lube on the metal on metal areas. My guns seem to like this. I just shot my 10/22 using 3 different dirty brands and I didn't start getting failure to ejects until after 1600 rds. I did mag after mag after mag and finally got some hiccups with the rifle. I may buy the TW25B for special occasions I guess, but for most things Super Lube is awesome. At least in my opinion.

    April 8, 2020 8:30 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Bull o' the Woods

    Mobil 1 synthetic grease, Mobil 1 synthetic oil (0W-40 or 5W-50), Wipe-Out Bore Foam, Kroil and Breakfree CLP as needed, and Eezox for rust prevention. I used to use Shooter's Choice bore solvent, but since that brand became MC-7 the formula changed and they added too many variants: "lead remover," "copper remover," "bore cleaner," "extra strength bore cleaner," "shotgun cleaner." I cannot tell who is on first. A quart of Mobil 1 oil and a tube of Mobil 1 grease is enough to last a lifetime. Ballistol mixed with water is useful when cleaning after shooting corrosive ammo.

    March 11, 2020 11:54 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    David Branchcomb

    I'm with you as to the pronunciation. I've been shooting for nearly 60 years and that has always been the way it was pronounced. Plus the smell evokes memories of good times. When my dor smells it she know fun is about to happen.

    January 23, 2020 5:17 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Jack Ryan

    Funny. It says Hoppe's (pronounced "hops" for the unfamiliar). No, it's actually pronounced "Hop-eez". Now I'm wondering about the value of the rest of the 'familiarization'.

    January 22, 2020 4:43 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Armadillo Leader

    We originally used (Issue) CLP, good stuff but attracted dirt and dust. Switched to Tetra Gun OOB411. Didn't dry out (evaporate) like CLP, but attracted static dust, and froze in the cargo hold. Worked with Tetra Gun to develop the TW-25B, didn't freeze in the plane, didn't attract static charged dust when landing in dusty jungle environments. TW25B transferred to Kleenbore, then to Mil-Com. Best lube ever. Just smells bad. You can lube a gun with it, put it away for 20 years, pick it up and it will be ready to go.

    January 18, 2020 3:06 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    john theis

    Learned years ago about using good motor oil for a lube. If it's good enough for engines and turbos, it was good enough for me, my co-workers and students. No problems and approaching 2 decades of high use in all temps.
    Cost is about 20 cents an ounce.

    November 18, 2019 9:31 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Bill

      I’ve also heard a 50/50 mix of motor oil and transmission oil. The tranny oil helps break down carbon build up for easier cleaning and the motor oil; well we know what that does.

      January 23, 2020 3:10 am
      • Commenter Avatar
        Mark

        Transmission fluid is a hydraulic fluid for use in a closed (clean) system, it is not meant to be a lubricant or a cleaner. Do not use transmission fluid.
        Oil for a turbo diesel engine is however designed to lubricate and will have additives to deal with carbon and other particulate. Full synthetic oil can also be blended with synthetic bearing grease to make a thick oil (or thin grease if you prefer).

        January 11, 2022 5:59 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Francis

    I use Hoppe' s Bore cleaner to clean, Hoppe's gun oil on the barrel and usally Lucas Extreme Duty on the slide rails

    October 11, 2019 11:20 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Matt

    G96 is the best, and best smelling CLP. GREAT stuff.

    Also, be careful what you use to clean certain lined barrels with.

    September 15, 2019 7:28 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Ol'salt

    Has anyone ever tried Boeshield T-9? It is by far the best anti corrosion lube for extremely salty areas. I use it on some pretty expensive boats but never tried it on a gun. I have compared it side by side with a ton of marine sprays and non work like it for corrosion prevention. I just do t want to experiment on my firearms.

    June 15, 2019 2:39 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      john theis

      Use it on table saw tops. Great stuff.

      November 18, 2019 9:33 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Paul

    Carburetor cleaner for bore scrubbing.
    Then Lube with motor oil. Lite touch of clear heavy duty grease. On slide rails on bore in places where it touches the slide. And that is it. Do not invent things that worked. Gun is a tool, it is not your d..ck to lube it whole day long.

    April 14, 2019 4:35 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Joshua Barker

    Battleborn grease is pretty good and one small jar lasts a long time.

    March 2, 2019 7:05 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Johnny Invisible

    I clean with Kano Kroil and Hoppe's #9 in a 50/50 mix. Air compressor blowgun to remove left over solvents. Rubber gloves and eye protection necessary.
    Lubricate with Mil-Comm MC2500 oil and TW25B grease. Besides their synthetic components Mil-Comm's "magic ingredient" is teflon which bonds to the metal surfaces and provides lubrication even when dry.
    Note: MC2500 has less teflon and is thinner than MC3500. MC3500 is midway between a grease and an oil and again has less teflon than their TW25B grease.
    After finding Mil-Comm products, I now use my left over Break Free CLP for automotive and yard tools.

    You can also mix one part TW25B grease four parts 99% isopropyl alcohol is a spray bottle. Give is a shake each time you use it and generously spray it into hard to reach places. The alcohol quickly evaporates leaving a thin coating of the protective grease behind. This is not my idea. It was posted on Mil-Comm's old website.
    They also suggested using straight 99% alcohol for cleaning, and it works well, especially for nasty 22LR's. Since the 99% alcohol has NO lubrication or protective properties, the freshly cleaned metal is vulnerable to rust or corrosion. It is IMPERATIVE to follow up with the grease/alcohol spray and further lubrication.

    October 24, 2018 1:42 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Fred

    No, it's not prounced "hops." Call the company and ask them, doofus.

    October 2, 2018 3:54 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Mike

      Even if you’re right, does name calling solve anything?

      August 7, 2019 2:31 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Drew

    What about a solvent recommendation? You did lubricant, 3-in-1, and grease. I think we’re missing other starting points for the protectants you mentioned as well.

    September 13, 2018 8:52 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Leo

    Don't use Tetra products it has a bad reaction when exposed to salt. Guns have rusted in as little as two hours from my sweat.

    August 27, 2018 8:39 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Chris

    "Good ole Hoppe’s #9 (pronounced “hops” for those unfamiliar)[...]"

    It's actually pronounced HOP-eez. I wondered myself until I watched a couple of their videos on YouTube.

    August 16, 2018 12:03 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      overdriver999

      youre right..i never would have thought that until i watched the Hoppe's youtube channel...i always corrected ppl and swore it was pronounced "hops"...i stand corrected and now i know..thanks!

      October 21, 2018 10:36 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Ken in Dallas

    The article makes no mention of air temperature. Lubricants perform differently at different temperatures. Some freeze; some run. And a firearm is like any other machine: If it spins, oil it; if it slides; grease it. No mention is made of which ingredient dissolves lead and which copper. Snake oil never says what it contains. If you're going to stake your life on a firearm, you want to know what you're lubing it with - no? The Internet is full of people who make claims for this and that, so I won't claim to have the answers, but you need to do the work and find them for these questions and a few others.

    August 5, 2018 9:14 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Chad Carroll

    WHAT NONE OF YOU INCLUDING THE AUTHUR GETS IS THE FACT THAT ALL THESE RECOMMENDATIONS ARE COMPLETELY A WASTE OF MONEY BESIDES THE DEDICATED SOLVENTS ONLY. AUTHOR STATES HE DOESN'T KNOW AND NOBODY KNOWS WHAT TYPE TO USE. THAT IS INCORRECT, FACTUALLY INCORRECT!! I'M HERE TO DISPELL THE BULLSHIT SURROUNDING THIS TOPIC. ALL YOU WANT IS SIMPLE PLAIN OLE LAXATIVE OIL (MINERAL OIL) YES THE STUFF THAT MAKE YOU SHIT!! THE OIL THAT'S SAFE INSIDE YOUR BODY AND OUTSIDE YOUR BODY. THE OIL THAT COST A FEW BUCKS AT WAL MART OR ANY WHERE ELSE AND 1 BOTTLE WILL LAST FOR YEARS ALL AT A FEW BUCKS. THAT IS THE BASIS FOR EVERY OTHER OIL OUT HERE. I'VE ONLY BEEN USING MINERAL OIL FOR 25 YEARS. I'VE USED OTHERS AND NONE DO BETTER THAN PLAIN MINERAL OIL. IT'S WHAT THE MANUFACTORER USES. IT'S WHAT HOPPES LUBE OIL IS WITH PERFUME. THAT'S IT PEOPLE. THIS IS NOT A SECRET OR SOMEONE LOOKING FOR SOME SPECIAL SAUCE. I'M NOT KIDDING YOU PEOPLE. I HAVE A METALLURGY BACKGROUND AND I DO KNOW WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT.. HERE'S WHAT YOU NEED TO DO FROM HERE ON OUT UNTIL YOU ARE DEAD. GETS SOME GOOD FLANNEL CLOTH AND CUT IT INTO 20 INCH OR SO SQUARES, TAKE A COUPLE TABLESPOONS AND DOUSE THE NEWLY CUT CLOTH YOU'VE CUT WITH PINKING SHEARS AND GET YOURSELF A PLASTIC ZIP LOCK BAG AND ALLOW IT TO DISPERSE INTO THE CLOTH INSIDE THE BAG OVER A FEW HOURS AND BOOM YOU'VE GOT YOUR PROTECTIVE RAG. SIMPLY REAPPLY OIL TO THE RAG OVER TIME WHEN IT FINALLY GETS DRY. WIPE DOWN YOUR "METAL" GUNS AND GUN PARTS WHEN YOU ARE ABOUT TO PUT THEM AWAY AND THAT IS ALL YOU HAVE TO DO FOR PROTETECTIVE MEASURES. ANOTHER TRICK ON THE SOLVENT CLEANING SIDE IS USING MINERAL SPIRITS FOR CLEANING. HOPPES 9 SOLVENT IS OK TO USE IN THE BARREL, BUT PARTS CLEANING ETC SHOULD BE DONE WITH PLAIN CHEAP OLE MINERAL SPIRITS (PAINT THINNER, BUT USE MINERAL SPIRITS AS ITS CHEAPER AND LESS STINKY) WITH A TOOTH BRUSH OR A BRASS BRUSH. THIS IS ALL YOU NEED. NOT WHAT THE AUTHUR SAID ABOUT CONSTANTY CHANGING WITH THE BEST PRODUCTS ON THE MARKET WHATEVER THAT NONSENSE MEANS. YES, THE GUYS IN THE 60'S THAT ARE PROBABLY USING MINERAL OIL ARE RIGHT. THAT COULD BE CALLED THE BEST TRADITIONAL GUN OIL. SIDENOTE I WAS BORN IN THE 80'S. THIS IS METAL WE ARE TALKING ABOUT AND THIS IS WHAT WILL NEVER CHANGE ABOUT GUNS THEY ARE ALWAYS JUST METAL AND YOU ARE JUST PROTECTING METAL NOT GUNS, METAL!! TO HELL WITH THE BEST PRODUCTS ON THE MARKET. THESE PRODUCTS ARE BASED WITH MINERAL OIL AND HAVE SOME PERFUME IN THEM AND SUDDENLY ITS HOPPES LUBE OR THIS OR THAT!! I HATE THE MYSTERY AROUND THIS TOPIC. IT'S SO SIMPLE REALLY. LEAVE THE MARKET ALONE. THEY ONLY EXIST TO TAKE YOUR MONEY FROM YOU AND HAVE NOTHING TO OFFER YOU THAT MINERAL OIL AND MINERAL SPIRITS CANT GIVE YOU. ALWAYS REMEMBER GUN METALS ARE SO HARD, UNBELIEVABLY HARD AND THAT FRICTION IS NEVER THE ISSUE. THE PARTS WILL RIDE TO TOGETHER FOREVER AND BURNISH (MARRYING OF PARTS ETC). SOME PARTS WILL WEAR OVER TIME AND LOOSEN UP BUT THEY DIDN'T WEAR BECAUSE THEY DIDNT HAVE OIL FLOWING THROUGH THEM. DO NOT SOAK YOUR GUNS IN OIL PEOPLE. ONLY KEEP A MICROSCOPIC FILM ON THE METAL PARTS ONLY. ALUMINUM DOESN'T NEED PROTECTING SO KEEPS THE OIL AWAY. WE DON'T NEED OIL EVERY WHERE ACCUMULATING DUST, DIRT ETC CAUSING AN ABRASIVE PASTE THAT WILL ACTUALLY WEAR THE PARTS. THAT IS ALL THAT IS NEEDED FOR THE PROTECTION OF THEM. ON AR FAMILY RIFLES YES IT'S OK TO USE ENOUGH TO PREVENT THE PARTS FROM FREEZING ETC BUT NOT TO MUCH. I PERSONLLY USE A 27 GAUGE SYRINGE NEEDLE THAT I CUT THE TIP OFF OF IT TO PREVENT STABBING AND A SYRINGE FULL OF MINERAL OIL FOR PRECISE APPLICATIONS LIKE ON EVERY TYPE OF FIREARM MECHANISM POSSIBLE. THIS IS GOOD TO CONCENTRATE THE OIL INTO A CERTAIN AREA ONLY TO PREVENT IT FROM GETTING EVERYWHERE.. IVE BEEN USING THE SAME SYRINGE AND NEEDLE FOR 12 YEARS ON ALL MY COUNTLESS NUMBER OF GUNS. THE WHOLE USING MOTOR OIL FALLACY IS JUST SOMETHING PEOPLE DO TO SATISFY THERE BELIEF SYSTEMS. THEY THINK MACHINE GUNS ARE LIKE CAR PARTS THAT NEED OIL FLOWING THROUGH THEM AND THAT'S JUST BULLSHIT THINKING. I HAVE A MACHINE GUN AND I KEEP IT AS DRY AS POSSIBLE WITH ONLY WHATS NEEDED WITH MINERAL OIL. JUST USE MINERAL OIL WHERE NEEDED IT'S JUST THAT SIMPLE PEOPLE. PLEASE BELIEVE WHAT I'M TELLING YOU. IF YOU INSTITUTE THESE PROCESSES YOU WILL FIND THAT IT NOT ONLY WORKS BUT WILL SAVE YOU SO MUCH DAMN TIME AND MONEY. I HAVE NOTHING TO GAIN FROM THIS OTHER THAN GETTING PEOPLE TO STOP FOLLOWING THE GUN OIL MARKET.

    August 4, 2018 4:18 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Drew

      So what do you use for a solvent then? He doesn’t mention any that aren’t 3-in-1.

      September 13, 2018 8:49 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        TungstenCarbideProjectile

        He said mineral spirits (paint thinner)

        July 1, 2020 5:39 pm
        • Commenter Avatar
          Jerry harrell

          Mineral spirits is non paint thinner

          September 9, 2020 5:12 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Richard

      Agree with the mineral oil. Cheap and non toxic. A little dab will do ya.

      December 25, 2019 12:28 am
    • Commenter Avatar
      Kev

      Some good info here, much taken from gunblue490, its good to give credit to people whos ideas you respect .

      January 12, 2020 5:08 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Bull o' the Woods

      STOP SHOUTING! I can't even read this.

      March 11, 2020 11:34 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Henry E.

    Anything Lucas oil makes, I've had great luck with. Their CLP is top notch, high Timken rating on gun grease, and their oil in the needle tip bottle allows for precise application. Last I heard it's what Sig uses in their factory and my Sig 516 came boxed with a sample pack of the oil.

    August 3, 2018 2:52 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Jeff

    Gotta give the nod to M-Pro 7 products. I've used many different oils, lubes and greases to found M-Pro to work great!

    August 3, 2018 9:15 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Lorenzo

    M-Pro 7 Cleaning Kit from Eric's article on Best Gun Cleaning Kits is the best one I've used. It has both the M-Pro 7 Cleaner and Oil in the kit along with the brushes. It's my favorite cleaning and lubricating kit of all time.

    August 1, 2018 9:10 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Eric Hung

      Thanks Lorenzo...it's what I take in my large range bag!

      August 2, 2018 1:30 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    G Willackers

    Kano KROIL........I can't believe nobody has mentioned it.

    August 1, 2018 3:55 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    jim

    Mr Collins, I love your sassy and humorous writing style.. Thanks for helping make pew pew entertaining as well as informative

    August 1, 2018 7:44 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Leigh

    Ive Found Lanox works well for most guns has lanolin which is good for protection and also as a lube also water resistant
    dont over use it but is also good for your wood stock allways wipe off excess comes in a spray like WD 40

    July 31, 2018 10:43 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Craig Hunter

    A huge fan of your write-ups, please keep them coming.
    I like to use Ballistol or a good 3-in-1 to clean the average range day fouling, followed by a rub of some fantastic oil I have found made by Aquila in South Africa. Grew up with Ballistol and the smell takes me back to childhood and army days very quickly, but it costs a bit to be using every week, so I alternate with the 3-in-1. On the Aquila oil I bought a second hand rusted rifle once and a scrub with steel wool and that oil restored it to brand new condition in no time. All my guns go to sleep with that oil on since then.

    July 31, 2018 10:11 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    SJaggard

    i just use birchwood grease on sliding and Rem oil on everything else and shoot a lot so I don’t tear down every time-sprey n clean what I can reach then more thoural once a week or so- I find myself running more and more wet - is there any downside to running really wet ?

    July 31, 2018 7:12 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Chad Carroll

      Yes, it's a terrible idea to run guns soaking wet. You are creating an abrasive paste being dust, dirt etc that will cause the parts to detoriate overy time. FACT! Keep the gun dry!!!! Only a microscopic level of protection is needed for the most part and if you need oil to prevent freezing of parts only use mineral oil. READ my reply above to this article.

      August 4, 2018 4:34 am
  • Commenter Avatar
    Chris Jar-Head

    Absolutely fantastic article. As mentioned; it's all about what your experience is and what works best for you. As a side note, back in the late '90s when there was relative worldwide peace (i.e. no huge troop deployments), my 81's platoon used Diet Coke to clean the Mortar Tubes. The U.S.M.C.'s budet at that time was about ten cents a year (there was somewhat serious talk about disbanding the Corps at that time), so cleaning supplies were no existent. For lube / protectant before we turned the systems back into the armory, I remember vaguely we used one Marine's Canola Oil that he used to cook is own meals with this really tiny electric stove in the barracks.

    July 31, 2018 6:49 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Notalima

    TW25B grease for your AK pattern rifles all day. Works fantastic.

    I'm not an operator operating operationally, but Safariland CLP has done yeoman's work for the last few decades for me for my pistols and AR-pattern rifles. Hotter hell desert, cold ass Flagstaff winters, it just works.

    I've tried a handful of 'wonder oils', and outside of M=Pro7, I've not really been impressed with one or more qualities in each one tried. Dries out too fast this one, too gummy that one, cakes up this one, works like crap on suppressed applications that one (big thing since I shoot a lot of suppressed range days)

    Gunzilla is next on the 'try it out' list, however.

    July 31, 2018 6:36 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    PFJ

    Tube of Mobile SHC grease, quart Mobile synthetic 5w20 and bottle of Hoppes solvent, The tube and quart will last a life time of weapon lubing.and get them at Walmart for chump change. Much cheaper than buying 1oz tubes of oil. Scam. A bag of qtips and some bristle brushes and old cut up T-shirts good to go. Air compressor is not necessary but is a huge help. Wear glasses or goggles.

    July 31, 2018 6:35 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Mark Wynn

    I too, try stuff ... and currently like, for pistols anyway, Hoppe's Elite Foaming Gun Cleaner and Remington Rem Dri-lube. Non messy, non-toxic, both work great ... and don't attract crud. The teflon dri-lube is light, but I clean and lube after every range visit so I feel it protects adequately.

    July 31, 2018 6:08 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Charlie Hector

    Slip2000
    Slip EWL

    July 31, 2018 5:29 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Gary Wolff

    I like Gunzilla, I use it on all my firearms.Been using it for years now

    July 31, 2018 5:16 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    DON MINIET

    For basic cleaning "Hoppe's Elite" works great, but for lube "Militec-1" is my weapon of choice! First thing I do with a new gun is take it totally apart and strip all the oils and grease with brake cleaner or acetone; any good degreaser, then brush on Militec on all metal parts,Take a blow dryer and heat the parts, then brush on more oil, then I take compressed air and blow the oil in every nook and cranny. Heat again then wipe off excess. Reassemble lubing as normal with Militec. After this cleaning is a snap; nothing stick and many times all you have to do is wipe it down and re-lube normally,

    July 31, 2018 4:59 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Matt

    G96 all the way!

    July 31, 2018 4:45 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Chris S

    What about the old Ed's red formula for gun cleaning and lubrication? Or in a pinch, how about kerosene or automatic transmission fluid for lubrication, two of the ingredients in Ed's Red. Has anybody ever actually looked at the ingredients or the safety data sheet of Hoppe's number 9? The ingredients might be eerily familiar if you've ever made Ed's Red.

    July 31, 2018 4:39 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    Bruce W

    Nope.
    Best 3 in 1 is G96.
    Smells great and can be used as a man's body spray.
    Chicks will love it.

    Oh, and never had a problem with using it on guns.

    July 31, 2018 4:08 pm
    • Commenter Avatar
      Matt

      Amen! Been using it since the 80s. Never a problem. Love it!

      July 31, 2018 4:45 pm
      • Commenter Avatar
        Mark Wynn

        ... on you or guns?

        July 31, 2018 6:22 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    barry

    anyone have any experience with shooter lube? i bought a bottle of their oil and cleaner and put it on my poly80 glock, but i am not so sure i see a difference between this and some other oil

    July 31, 2018 3:59 pm
  • Commenter Avatar
    7seasdiver

    At the risk of creating a firestorm of hate mail, shooting is one of my hobbies, but not my only one. I also build clocks and work on old clocks. Hoppe's GunMedic is the absolute best product anywhere for cleaning and un-gumming clock movements that haven't run for years. Hoppe's #9 is the go-to for lubricating clock movements. Heresay, I know, but just saying . . . .

    July 31, 2018 2:02 pm
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