Something for the Shooters – Homemade Bore Cleaner

This formula has been around for years. I’ve never gotten around to trying it but it keeps turning up so I thought I’d pass it on. Be safe with chemicals!

CONTENTS: Ed’s Red Bore Cleaner
1 part Dexron II, IIe or III Automatic Transmission Fluid (ATF), GM Spec. D-20265 or later.
1 part Kerosene – deodorized, K1
1 part Aliphatic Mineral Spirits, Fed. Spec. TT-T-2981F, CAS #64741-49-9, or may substitute “Stoddard Solvent”, CAS #8052-41-3, or equivalent, (aka “Varsol”)
1 part Acetone, CAS #67-64-1.
(Optional up to 1 lb. of Lanolin, Anhydrous, USP per gallon. It is okay to substitute Lanolin, Modified, Topical Lubricant, from the drug store)


[JWR Adds This Warning: All of the usual precautions for handling caustic and flammable solvent fluids must be taken, such as wearing goggles and rubber gloves.]

Mix outdoors, in good ventilation. Use a clean 1 gallon metal, chemical resistant, heavy gauge PET or PVC plastic container. NFPA approved plastic gasoline storage containers are also okay. Do NOT use a HDPE container, which is permeable, because the acetone will eventually evaporate. The acetone in ER will also attack HDPE, causing the container to collapse, making a big mess!

Add the ATF first. Use the empty ATF container to measure the other components, so that it is thoroughly mixed. If you incorporate the lanolin into the mixture, melt this carefully in a double boiler, taking precautions against fire. Pour the melted lanolin it into a larger container, rinsing the lanolin container with the bore cleaner mix, and stirring until it is all dissolved. Divert a small quantity, up to 4 ounces per quart of the 50-50 ATF/kerosene mix for optional use as an “ER-compatible” gun oil. This can be done without impairing the effectiveness of the remaining mix.

Label with necessary SAFETY WARNINGS: RIFLE BORE CLEANER, CAUTION: FLAMMABLE MIXTURE, HARMFUL OR FATAL IF SWALLOWED. KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN. Flammable mixture! Keep away from heat, sparks or flame. FIRST AID, If swallowed DO NOT induce vomiting, call physician immediately. In case of eye contact immediately flush thoroughly with water and call a physician. For skin contact wash thoroughly.

The lanolin can be found at better pharmacies like CVS or Walgreens. Ask the pharmacist, they usually have it in the back, not out on the shelves.

Ed’s Red will not dissolve copper fouling, so have some copper remover solution on hand. Be aware that the ammonia in the copper remover can damage stock finishes, and will dissolve brass bore brushes. Have some extra brushes on hand, or use a stainless steel brush.

Silver Coin Info

If you are interested in silver as an inflation hedge, for barter or sale then check out: has great info based on recent silver prices to figure silver coin values. If you are new to silver then remember this. CHINA CURRENTLY MAKES COUNTERFEIT MORGAN SILVER DOLLARS THAT ARE WORTHLESS. They have fooled lots of people and a personal friend of mine lost hundreds of dollars buying the coins and then paying for appraisal. Money Wasted.  I’ve seen these fakes for sale as genuine in North Carolina Pawn shops. Ebay used to allow the sale of these if they were sold as replicas. Don’t get burned. If you are a rookie then buy only from trusted sources. Some auction companies will bring a supply of coins to local estate auctions giving the impression that the coins belonged to the estate.

MRE Storage Life

Hello All! This is my first posting and I hope to follow it with lots more useful and interesting information. The subject of surplus military MREs has been discussed and a shelf or storage life is one of the big grey areas. The info in the link that follows is supposedly from an official US Army source. I’ve seen this same info in other sources. KEEP THIS IN MIND: When buying MRE’s from Flea Market/ Gun Shows etc you don’t know the storage history of the items. If they were stored in hot conditions the remaining storage life may be much, much shorter than you expect.

Doug KS4TI