Bob Owens

The saddest truth in politics is that people get the leaders they deserve

CorrosionX for Guns Review

Written By: Bob - Mar• 12•13


One of the small perks of blogging is that you occasionally cross the path of someone who has a product that they think is pretty neat, and they’d like to give you a free sample review.

That works great if the product in question is something you know how to use and explain, but doesn’t work real well if you can’t understand what makes it tick.

That the position I find myself in reviewing CorrosionX for Guns (, a cleaner/lubricant/rust preventative (CLP) that a nice gentleman by the Richard Watson sent me to try out. Actually, he sent me two formulations, two bottles of CorrosionX for Guns with the narrow precision applicator tip, and a spray bottle of regular CorrosionX.

There is quite a bit of science behind how CorrosionX, CorrosionX for Guns, other CLPs, and other gun oils and bore solvents work. The problem is I’m not remotely a chemist, I’m an English major with a college science background in geology. The CorrosionX Product Data Sheet and CorrosionX-Material Safety Data Sheet might make sense to those of you with a background in chemistry and engineering, but all I can do is look at them and go, “uh-huh.” When it comes to trying to explain molecular chemistry to me, you may as well be trying to explain it to a goat.

The bullet-point marketing stuff is more my speed:

  • cuts through stubborn bore deposits for easier, more thorough cleaning
  • Decreases fouling, even after hundreds or thousands of rounds
  • Lubricates and protects mechanisms and bores even better and longer than products fortified with Teflon*
  • Ideal for semiautomatics and automatics
  • Sticks to metal like a magnet to prevent rust … even in the rain

That is the kind of stuff I can grasp, and luckily, I rarely clean my guns the way I should, so I had very dirty toy to work on.

Bob with Templar Custom rifle, "Gretchen."

Bob with Templar Custom rifle, “Gretchen” in 2011.

I’ve had my Templar Custom MCWS “Gretchen” since 2011, and I’ve pretty much ignored her maintenance. I’ve simply shoot her, and put her away. Templar owner Bob Reynolds does that with his R&D guns because he wants to see how much abuse his rifles can take. I do it because I’m lazy and hate to take guns apart, but I justify it as an endurance test. In any event, I’d put about 900-1,000 rounds through this particular precision AR-15, and it was due for a cleaning.

As you might expect, it was pretty filthy, especially the bolt and chamber, and there was a bunch of burnt powder built up in the trigger assembly as well. I used carb cleaner to blast the gunk out of the trigger assembly, and gave CorrosionX for Guns it’s chance on my upper receiver parts.

Cleaning-wise, the CorrosionX for Guns worked well enough to get the burnt carbon off, but it wasn’t a magic bullet, and it still required quite a bit of work to scrape off the crud. The same held true in the chamber, and to a lesser extend when I bore-snaked the bore. Frankly, I was expecting some serious nastiness out of the bore, and after running the bore snake through a half dozen times, I was expecting the dry patch I ran through next to come out filthy… and it was.

But the next patch I ran through with CorrosionX for Guns was much better, and the doped-up patch after that seemed to be clean over everything other than the CorrosionX for Guns on the patch. I ran one more dry patch through the barrel to soak up any excess goop, and decided I was done with barrel. What will be interesting is my next cleaning session, which I plan in another thousand rounds or so. If it lives up to other reviews or CorrosionX for Guns that I’ve read, the next round of cleaning, with CorrosionX for Guns protecting the metal, should go much smoother.

While it wasn’t the best cleaner, CorrosionX for Guns was a funky, snot-slippy consistency that wasn’t light gun oil and wasn’t grease, but a slimy in-between. As a lubricant, it seemed like a winner as I soaked key bolt parts in it, and then reassembled the rifle after wiping off the excess with a clean rag.

The next time I took “Gretchen” to the range she shot great, though there was a slight bit of smoke after a rapid fire string… perhaps I hadn’t wiped off the excess as well as I thought. That was a very damp weekend in January that was icy on Saturday morning that changed over to a cold rain before drying out. The next time we went to the range after that was another soggy weekend in February, where she was shot a little and sat racked, presumably absorbing moisture, the rest of the time. Between trips, I didn’t crack open the rifle, clean it, or wipe it down in any way shape or form.

As of this morning, after more than two months in the safe after two weekends of being exposed to significant moisture for hours at a time, the CorrosionX for Guns seems to have done a great job as a lubricant and especially as a preventative. The metal it touched is still slimy-slick (again… maybe I put it on a little thick?), and there is no sign of any rust or other corrosion.

Bottom line? CorrosionX for Guns isn’t a magical cleaning product, but it gets the job done. Where it seems to excel is at a lubricant and especially as a preservative/moisture inhibitor. I think this is good stuff to use as a lube, and if you are going to store your gun for any length of time, particularly in damp environments, I would certainly recommend trying it.

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  1. 4strokes says:

    Been using this product for about 4 years now. As a cleaner, it is about the same as most other CLP stuff out there, Where CorrosionX really shines is the protection part of CLP. This stuff is the bomb for keeping rust away from your guns. Not a spot in 4 years.

  2. Comrade X says:

    I like the name!

    Death before slavery!

  3. Catseye says:

    So how do you think it would work for swords and knives? Mine could use some cleaning.

  4. J.D. Hill says:

    CorrosionX is a unique technology. So when you compare it to other CLPs, it’s like comparing apples to potatoes. The core technology of the product – what we call POLAR BONDING – causes CorrosionX to be attracted to and bond with any metal or metal alloy that can oxidize. This phenomena is particularly interesting on firearms, because all its unique benefits come into play. For instance, as a lubricant, you can wipe off the excess “oil” but you cannot physically remove the monomolecular Fluid Thin Film Coating (FTFC) layer bonded to the metal. So you can essentially wipe off the excess and fire (literally) thousands of rounds on a “dry” weapon. As a corrosion inhibitor, you can go duck hunting in the rain or get your sweaty hands all over your weapons without any fear of rust because unlike other oil-based products, CorrosionX cannot be displaced by moisture.

    With respect to cleaning, CorrosionX is ONLY interested on bonding to unoxidized metal. So the thicker the accumulation of “crud” the less strong the attraction is (which translated into the longer it takes to work). Think of it like two magnets. CorrosionX to metal is like two magnets being attracted to each other. When the magnets get close, they snap together and won’t budge. If there’s a bunch of trash in the weapon, it’s like slipping a piece of cardboard or a 2 x 4 between the magnets; the attraction is still there, but the force is reduced so it takes longer. CorrosionX is a great product for storage because it’ll pull all the trash out of your bore between outings (just make sure to run a few dry patches through prior to shooting, as CorrosionX will change velocity between rounds significantly). So here’s the cleaning challenge. Clean a your weapon with the bore solvent of your choice. Heck, go out and sonically clean your weapon if you like. Then spray some CorrosionX, wait a minute and then run a patch though, and I guarantee CorrosionX will pull more trash out of your weapon.

    Lastly, because CorrosionX forms a Polar Bonding Fluid Thin Film Coating (or FTFC) – the monomolecular layer referenced earlier – fouling won’t stick. So not only does it clean better, it keeps your weapons cleaner. That’s why all the black powder guys are switching to CorrosionX.

    I just wanted to relay all this because even though it looks like oil, it works very differently, so I wanted everyone to have the correct expectations, so you can try it and see how cool this product really is on firearms.

  5. Eric says:

    I couldnt find a post exactly on topic to my question so I picked one in the firearms category. I’ve searched the nets for the answer to this but nobody seems to have a definitive answer, and I’m hoping you might have something to say: BTW I’m not a shooter but have an interest in the subject, however I have to balance living in a gun unfriendly state with the desire to learn to shoot.

    It’s about the great AK vs AR debate. Our troops, esp in sandy environments, have issues keeping their AR pattern rifles properly lubed and cleaned, making me wonder if the Army insistence that “properly maintained M16/M4 rifles work just fine” is realistic. The common perception is that AK pattern rifles are more rugged, and AR pattern guns are more accurate. How much of that is due to part tolerances and how much to the gas operating system? How would an AK built to AR part tolerances compare in reliability to a gas piston AR (HK416?)?

    Here are some straws in the wind I’ve gathered during my research:
    1) The AKs long stroke piston is attributed slightly more reliability than a short stroke more common in recent designs, but at the cost of greater perceived recoil due to greater shifting mass during firing. The AR DGI gas system is smoother due to less shifting mass. In multi-shot situations, this would impact accuracy.
    2) The heat generated by the gas bleed in a DGI system is absorbed by the bolt carrier group, leading to fouling and drying out of lubricant, but the heat from a piston system concentrates at the regulator, which is near where your support hand goes during firing. The bolt carrier group is also better equipped to tolerate the heat, being metal, whereas designing a forestock to handle it can become an issue.
    3) The AK appears to have features other than part tolerances to deal with harsh environments. I’m defining tolerances as how closesly they fit together, and the AK appears to have empty spaces inside designed to allow fouling to accumulate without affecting the operation. I havent read anything about AR pattern rifles having that.

  6. Catseye says:

    Sounds like it may be what I’m looking for and it won’t bother blade function on a sword or knife. Manufacturing a product that can replace blade oil(Cleaning and lubricating) and Blade wax(anti-oxidizing protection)would be nice. I’ll have to try it and see how it goes.

  7. louielouie says:

    my next cleaning session, which I plan in another thousand rounds or so.

    i clean after every session/100 rounds.
    there must be something wrong with me.

  8. jdunmyer says:

    I’ve used C-X for a number of years, as a penetrating oil and on electrical connections. It’s great on the latter, solving more than one mysterious problem for me in automotive electrics. There’s a bottle of C-X for Guns sitting here, will have to put it to use.