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Silicone oil...

Discussion in 'Anything Airgun Related' started by cloverleaf, Aug 15, 2014.

  1. cloverleaf

    cloverleaf Honorary Member

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    This synthetic oil seems to divide people. It's often sold as a water-repelling exterior treatment for rifles, as well as for use internally on O-rings and other rubber seals that are allegedly degraded by natural oils.

    Critics often cite that it's terrible for metal-metal lubrication; causing seizing, galling and general horror. In addition it's extremely tenacious and difficult to remove once it's found it's way onto a surface.

    Personally I see no reason to use it on my guns; a good quality mineral oil has never let me down in terms of corrosion protection while the same oil or Molykote 33 works nicely on O-rings. While it's true that oil will swell and degrade natural rubber, Any O-ring you'll find on an air rifle will most likely be Nitrile (synthetic) and hence impervious to the solvent effects of natural oil.

    So.. Silicone oil; ultimate protector of finishes and saviour of O-rings, or pointless snake oil that needlessly risks working its way into and wrecking your gun?

    Am I missing something or are we all just better off playing it safe and using mineral oil exclusively?


    Interested to hear some opinions :)
     
  2. SteveO

    SteveO Top Poster

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    Clover,

    Yesterday while at Machine Mart I saw cans of WD40 PTFE for sale. have you encountered the product yet and will it be of any use for us gun enthusiasts?
     
  3. fatbob

    fatbob Engaging Member

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    Cloverleaf, you've got it spot on as far as I know silicon oil or grease has only one useful purpose in guns and it's to protect the seals & "o" rings in co2 guns for heaven's sake don't get it anywhere near any moving metal to metal surfaces such as bolts, probes or hammers etc it has nearly the same effect as super glue, I'm a mech fitter to trade and can remember an apprentice completely seizing a pallet wrapper using silicon products while carrying out a simple lube job initiating a complete strip down & cleaning job, it's not easy stuff to get rid of. ;)

    Atb
    Bob
     
  4. lanciamug

    lanciamug Well-Known Member

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    I,ve just replaced the 'o' rings in my target pistol and the guy in the bearing shop told me to lube them with siliconee oil as mineral oil will degrade them. It struck me later that the old ones had lasted 33 years with a regular dose of 3 in 1!
     
  5. fatbob

    fatbob Engaging Member

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    Forgot to mention earlier what I use for both lube and external rust protection is Ballistol "GUNEX" oil great stuff with many uses ;)

    Atb
    Bob
     
  6. Hoodster

    Hoodster Engaging Member

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    I use a purpose bought silicon coated cloth to rub down and protect the exterior of my rifles bought from my local rfd so far I'm rust free and problem free I also use silicon grease in my springers its provided with vortek tuning kits if its good enough for vortek it's got to be ok.
     
  7. Meteor62

    Meteor62 Major Poster

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    Ballistic oil for me for metal protection. Done hear much about this stuff now it was all the rage on agf 18 months ago
     
  8. cloverleaf

    cloverleaf Honorary Member

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    Thanks guys - think I'll stick to the mineral based stuff I've always used, in the absence of a compelling argument for Silicone.

    It surprises me that something capable of causing such damage is still available; however we all know that suppliers rarely place the customer's wellbeing before their own profit margin.

    Steve - not seen the WD40 with PTFE; although tbh WD40 is hateful, thin, poorly-lubricating stuff that leaves a nasty sticky residue behind if left for a while - so best avoided on guns full stop tbh.

    IMO you can't go wrong with a decent mineral oil, moly grease and molykote 33 for 99% of jobs on air rifles :up:
     
  9. Akita177

    Akita177 The Absolute State of Britian podcast

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    "Steve - not seen the WD40 with PTFE"

    Ive not used it on guns but GT85 contains PTFE and is very cheap.
    I never use WD40 but i always have a can of Ambersil 40+ in the cupboard for WD type jobs.
     
  10. terry1001

    terry1001 Major Poster

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    As I remember the silicone oil was reccommended for use on leather piston washers primarily because it isn't going to cause dieselling. It does also give a shiny, water repellent coating on walnut stocks. Silicone is extremely persistent and it's very dificult to remove from a surface, it used to be used as a core ingredient in some car polishes giving a good shine with very little effort. Unfortunately it's terrible stuff to have anywhere near a paint shop and minute traces in the air would cause bubbles to appear in the finish when cars were sprayed. Some car dealers even polished the windscreen with this type of polish which would make it very difficult to see out through the streaks and smears when the wipers were used.
    Like most lubricants it is ideal for use where intended but not anywhere else, most people seem to over-oil and that's as bad as not lubricating at all. Parts should be kept clean and dry (free of water) and lubricated sparingly with a suitable material. There are plenty of lubricants sold specifically for air gun (or gun) use but quite often they are over priced and cheaper, generic ones could well be used instead.
     
  11. Steve K

    Steve K Posting Addict

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    I was told a few years ago, to avoid silicone oil on any moving metal parts, in a rifle or otherwise.

    There was a big thread on the dark side a few years ago by Ben Taylor showing and telling of his experience with silicone oil in air rifles, it was enough to put me off for life and i keep it well away from my guns ;)
     
  12. oliver13

    oliver13 Donator

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    I get small pots of Silicone grease sold for SCUBA gear for about 3 or 4 quid a go, it stays where you put it. Comes in handy for O rings on torches & stuff as well.

    I used to put the occasional drop of silicon oil down the transfer port for years then I saw a few photos of what happens when it gets in metal to metal joints...
    I also believed it wasn't flammable so wouldn't Diesel but now know that's not strictly accurate, it may have a high flash point but it does have one.
     
  13. lanciamug

    lanciamug Well-Known Member

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