Rust is bad to a firearm as mud is bad to clean water. You cannot use any if they are contaminated or tainted. Rust can quickly turn a perfectly good functioning firearm into an inoperative piece of crap metal.
The good news is that there are many preventative measures you can take to protect your beloved firearm from rust and corrosion. Most often than not, a gun becomes rusty over time because of a lack of proper care. Other than negligence, high humidity is another major cause of rust on firearms.
If you live in a high humidity area, you need to check your firearm constantly for rust. So here are few methods that can help keep the rust off your firearm.
Store in a cool, dry place
Condensation, humidity, and water are the number one causes of rust on metal. To keep these elements away from your gun, you need to store it in an area that is completely dry.
You should also avoid leaving your firearm in its case for an extended amount of time as it can trap moisture, causing rust and corrosion. Some cases are designed to keep moisture away. They usually have some foam padding on the inside, and they are metallic on the outside.
If you can afford such a case when you feel that you won’t have the time to keep checking your gun for rust, you should consider getting one. Some of these watertight cases come with advanced features like pressure equalization valves and O-rings to help keep dirt, water, and dust from entering the case.
Lube your firearm
An excellent way of protecting your firearm from rust is lubing it with quality gun oil. Not cooking oil or some other oil as that may cause certain problems. Using good quality gun oil is essential.
Plus, excessive oil attracts fouling and dirt. If you use a minute amount, it might not be enough to keep rust from forming. So you have to keep a balance when oiling your gun. Don’t use too much and don’t use too little.
Products that can help protect your firearm from rust
Cosmoline is not a lube or oil; it is a wax-like substance made from petroleum that does an amazing job of keeping rust away from metal. It is quite thick, and you would need to heat it to be able to use it.
Cosmoline is so effective at keeping rust and corrosion away, you can store your firearm coated with this magical rust inhibitor for years, and it will still be free from rust and corrosion. It literally can save you hours of having to lube your gun every other time to prevent rust.
However, when you use it on your firearm, make sure to wipe your gun down well not to leave any residue of this substance. Failure to do this will leave a waxy residue after some time, which is hard to remove. Cosmoline solidifies after an extended period of time, years in this case, but once the volatile part of it evaporates, it leaves a waxy residue that requires laborious scraping to remove.
So make sure only a thin film of the rust inhibitor is left when you wipe down your gun. Also, it is important to point out that lubing your gun with this substance does take time and effort, but when you think about it, you’ll only need to do it only once in a long, long time.
Silica Gel is a drying agent, and it is often packed in small packets. It absorbs moisture keeping the products like shoes, clothes, and even food dry. That way, moisture cannot find its way into your stuff, causing all manner of problems.
To protect your firearm from rust, you should place a few packets in your gun case or the place you store your gun. It’s easy to use, convenient, economical, and cheap. However, it would not be ideal to use in a large gun vault since it doesn’t do a good job at controlling the humidity in large spaces.
Give your gun proper care and maintenance
If you go out every weekend to shoot targets or hunt small or big game, make sure to clean your firearm after every shooting session to avoid rust. If you allow your gun to stay dirt, not only will the dirt reduce its accuracy and overall performance, some parts of your gun will start to rust away.
Therefore, take the time to give your firearm a good clean and make sure to lube it afterward to ward off moisture and dirt. It a tedious and boring process, but essential if you want to keep your gun in good working condition and if you want to extend its lifespan.
While rust inhibitors can help protect your firearm from rust and corrosion, it also helps to store your gun in controlled conditions. Store your gun in a cool, dry place, but don’t store it when it’s dirty, particularly if you shoot corrosive ammo; you have to clean your fire afterward to prevent rust. If you can afford a watertight case, consider buying one, as this can go a long way in protecting your gun from rust. You can use a combination of the methods and products we have mentioned. The bottom line is, do what you can to protect your firearm from rust because rust-related damage can be expensive to repair. On top of that, if a gun is too rusty, you might need to replace it with a new one, which is also costly.