Author Topic: lapping to remove rust  (Read 14763 times)

Offline mikeyr

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lapping to remove rust
« on: May 12, 2016, 12:20:30 AM »
Ok, first post and yes I have done a search on this and read everything I could find.  I am getting back into black powder, I started way back in the mid-1970's and moved away from BP.  What got me going back was a rifle I started to build back in the 70's, I got as far as inletting everything and didn't know how to proceed, then met a girl, then had a girl and work along with both girls kept getting in the way, well I found that rifle a month ago  (in attic) and I am going to finish it now, along with a Jim Kibler kit :)

 So here is my question...I have a T/C 50cal Hawken percussion that I bought late 70's ish and shot the heck out of it.  Being a teenager at the time, I didn't always clean it like it should have been. Then I put it away for 20 years and didn't protect it for its long sleep.  I took it shooting a month ago and about 2/3rd's of the way down the barrel is something that grabs the maxiball (never shot patched balls, just Maxi and I poured my own) and gives resistance.  I am assuming its rust.  After 4 or 5 rounds you really have to shove hard to get past that spot, or use a brush and clean it up some.  It has not affected accuracy in any way that I can tell, the rifle is still more accurate than I am.  But I am not sure its safe anymore, I am always worried its going to grab the slug on the way out and make it stick in the barrel.  No amount of brass brushing or solvents seems to make any difference.   I have not tried removing the 40+ year never been removed breech plug, not even sure I could get it out.

 My choice would be a new barrel to drop in but what about lapping the barrel to get rid of the rough spots ? I never have done a barrel refresh but I know the concept and could handle that except for removing the breech plug part.  What is lapping and how is it different ?  I can handle lapping valves on a motor so I going to guess same thing.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2016, 12:24:49 AM by mikeyr »
...let's finish a rifle I started back in the 70's...

Offline WadePatton

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2016, 12:55:21 AM »
Yes, lap the heck out of it.  Mostly in the middle. 

It can't get worse, but can certainly improve.  If no improvement, replace the bbl.

But of course as cheap and useful as the "bore scope" type devices are these days, it'd be good to look at it before and after.  Especially after.  That might guide your decision to continue with the use of the bbl.
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Offline SCLoyalist

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2016, 04:03:37 AM »
 What is lapping and how is it different ?  I can handle lapping valves on a motor so I going to guess same thing.

I use the term 'freshing' or 'refreshing' a barrel to mean cutting new rifling with a cutter, and 'lapping' to mean casting a bore-sized lead slug and running the slug up and down the barrel many times, coated with a grinding compound.   Here's a thread reference that illustrates lapping:
http://americanlongrifles.org/forum/index.php?topic=31245.0   

And, you can  use the search engine on ALR here to find other references and discussions of 'lapping.'   Good luck with it.  SCL

Offline Ky-Flinter

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2016, 04:39:09 AM »
Hi Mikey,

Welcome to ALR.  When you were shooting 20 years ago, were you shooting Pyrodex or other substitute powder?  They are really bad news if not cleaned right after shooting.

-Ron
Ron Winfield

Life is too short to hunt with an ugly gun. -Nate McKenzie

Offline mikeyr

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2016, 07:39:41 AM »
cool, thanks Loyalist for the link on lapping I will try that this weekend.  And no, I never shot pyrodex in the hawken, I only started using pyrodex in my Ruger Old Army in the last few weeks, I like their pellets.  I will cast up a lead plug this weekend and try lapping the barrel.

 If I can get this taken care of, then I can work on my gun parts from long ago and make a gun while I wait for the Kibler gun kit and I will have 3 BP rifles soon.
« Last Edit: May 12, 2016, 07:45:50 AM by mikeyr »
...let's finish a rifle I started back in the 70's...

Online Dave Marsh

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2016, 02:49:54 PM »
If the lapping does not work rather than replacing the barrel send it to Bobby Hoyt and have it reamed out to a 54.  I picked up a TC Hawken 45 cal kit gun that was a mess.  The barrel was rusted.  Had Bobby apply his magic and it is like new.

Dave
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Offline WadePatton

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2016, 05:39:03 PM »
cool, thanks Loyalist for the link on lapping I will try that this weekend.  And no, I never shot pyrodex in the hawken, I only started using pyrodex in my Ruger Old Army in the last few weeks, I like their pellets.  I will cast up a lead plug this weekend and try lapping the barrel.

 If I can get this taken care of, then I can work on my gun parts from long ago and make a gun while I wait for the Kibler gun kit and I will have 3 BP rifles soon.

I pitted the bore of the Ruger I used to own and ruined completely the bore of my first BP rifle, using Pyrodex. 

It was years and years later on this site when I learned exactly how/why that happened.  I fully expect to never use any of that stuff again. The fact that "pellets" are still being sold tells me that most shooters don't think as I (accuracy first).
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Offline Scota4570

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2016, 06:10:41 PM »
The problem you will face with a TC is that the breech plug is insanely tight.  Getting it out will require a special wrench, to be made or found, that fits the patent breech plug.  You will also need to make fitted maple blocks fo the barrel.  Those will need to be rosined and held it a real barrel vice.  Once you get the plug out will will want to face off the barrel a little to make the plug install with normal torque.  I have pulled one TC plug.  IT was tough.  The snout of the plug was not fitted to the internal shoulder in the barrel as made.

Once the plug is out you certainly can lap it.  See the attached links.  I have lapped one TC.  It shoots great and wins local shoots. BTW, You can do a decent job lapping from the muzzle.  

If it is just rust, try scrubbing it with steel wool. 
« Last Edit: May 12, 2016, 06:12:00 PM by Scota4570 »

Offline mikeyr

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2016, 07:20:08 PM »

I pitted the bore of the Ruger I used to own and ruined completely the bore of my first BP rifle, using Pyrodex. 
I have been reading that on this forum about Pyrodex, I was not aware of it when I bought the pellets a month ago and I so far I have no visible on my Old Army (Its stainless), I better not damage it, I bought it new in 1976.  I thought the pellets would work well to get re-started on BP shooting, guess I will stop with Pyrodex.

 I would hate to try and remove the TC breech plug, I hope to recover the barrel by lapping this weekend.  I will cast up a lead slug and use valve lapping compound and see where that takes me.  Its pretty fine compound, but I have quite a bit of it.
...let's finish a rifle I started back in the 70's...

Offline D. Taylor Sapergia

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2016, 07:25:13 PM »
...or a 1" square of green Scotch Brite on an undersized jag.
D. Taylor Sapergia
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Offline T*O*F

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2016, 08:15:59 PM »
Go to an Oreillys Auto Parts store and buy a gallon of EnviroRust.  Clean the bore so there is no remaining oil in it.  Plug the nipple and pour the bore full.  Let it sit overnite.  The next day pour the solution back into it's container (its reuseable until its all used up)  Wash the bore with soap and water and oil it well.  EnviroRust ONLY removes the rust and harms nothing else.  It is non-toxic, biodegradable, and you just dump it out when it's all used up.  Your bore will be as rust-free as it's gonna get.

It is no longer necessary to lap or steel wool a bore to remove rust.
Dave Kanger

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Offline Daryl

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #11 on: May 12, 2016, 08:18:01 PM »
I would not bother with lapping - a new, properly rifled barrel is in order. You should be able get that from Track- they are inexpensive compared to re-barreling a long rifle with a blank.  I just paid $400.00 for a .36 bl. blank to replace the .32, then another $350.0 for the work. So- my re-barrel cost $750.00 - I think the replacement barrels, which are already blued and come in 32" (28"?) for slugs, or 60 to 66" for round balls AND are under $200.00 - cheap and they are good GM barrels.
Daryl

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Offline Ky-Flinter

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #12 on: May 12, 2016, 08:32:05 PM »
Go to an Oreillys Auto Parts store and buy a gallon of EnviroRust.  

I've used a product labeled EvapoRust that works the same as TOF has described.  Harbor Freight and some hardware stores carry it.  The stuff works like magic removing rust, but it won't help pitting.

-Ron
« Last Edit: May 12, 2016, 11:44:59 PM by Ky-Flinter »
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Offline bgf

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #13 on: May 12, 2016, 10:43:46 PM »
...or a 1" square of green Scotch Brite on an undersized jag.

And load with polishing compound for extra effect.  When I do this, I do something like 10 quarter strokes from bottom/breech, 10 half strokes, 10 3/4-strokes, and 10 full strokes.  My theory is that it prevents creating bulge or flare by focusing on one spot, though that would take a LOT of scrubbing.  If it needs more, repeat series with fewer strokes each time.


Offline WadePatton

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #14 on: May 12, 2016, 11:19:39 PM »
Am I the only one who is thinking that this is more about pitting/etching than rust?

Yes, I agree that bbl replacement is likely going to be the most efficient option.  There's no point in pulling the plug, if lapping from the front doesn't clear it up then it's toast. I'd start with scotch-brite or steel wool, if that improves things much, I'd feel fortunate.  

The few pits I put in the pistol bbl where the perchlorated-powder "deep cavity" type and were never going to brush or lap out.  A proper re-freshing would be necessary.  I sold it.

I hope yours cleans right up. I know a fella who has paid to have his cleaned up-twice (bp residue).
« Last Edit: May 12, 2016, 11:20:34 PM by WadePatton »
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Offline mikeyr

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2016, 12:28:57 AM »
Well as I mentioned in my original post, replacing the barrel would be my first choice, its just finding a T/C 50cal percussion barrel available that is the hard part.  I figure if I can't fix the damage then I have to some how removed the breech and put a new barrel on hopefully using the old breech  so I have no stock inletting/finish issues and blue the new barrel.

I happen to have evaporust in the garage, I will do that tonight.
...let's finish a rifle I started back in the 70's...

Offline Scota4570

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2016, 06:44:53 PM »
If you are going to scrap the old barrel removing the patent breech plug is easy.   Make a relief cut using a parting tool with the lathe.  Simply turn a ring of metal out of the breech end of the barrel right next to the plug.  This will remove the tension.  The plug will screw off easily.

I have heard that if you are really careful you can do it with a hacksaw.  I never tried myself.  Trying to remove the plug without doing this is an extreme uphill battle one some TC barrels.   

Buying a new barrel blank and transferring your parts over would be a good option.  You could fit the breech plug in the normal way.  It would give an opportunity to solder the rib and install proper ramrod pipes that are secured  with solder.  The original pipes with high of the rib and are secured with screws, they look stupid IMHO

Replacing the sights with low profile ones is not as brilliant idea as it sounds.  The stock comb is too high for that. 

Offline Daryl

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2016, 06:53:06 PM »
As Scota4570 notes, I have used the relief-cut method to loosen barrels from mil. actions - it works and should work perfectly with breech plugs that were put in by heavy handed employees with 4' long 'helper' bars used to align flats with the plug.
Daryl

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Offline mikeyr

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #18 on: May 13, 2016, 07:28:10 PM »
 WOW what a GREAT idea to remove the breech plug, I can understand why and how it would work and I happen to have a lathe to do it on.  I am surprised I didn't think of it myself, but if I get to the point of scrapping the barrel, I will do it.

Still hoping to save the barrel, it has evaporust in it right now from last night and I will do some minor lapping and go shooting over the weekend and see how it goes.
...let's finish a rifle I started back in the 70's...

Offline Bob Roller

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #19 on: May 13, 2016, 08:54:14 PM »

I pitted the bore of the Ruger I used to own and ruined completely the bore of my first BP rifle, using Pyrodex. 
I have been reading that on this forum about Pyrodex, I was not aware of it when I bought the pellets a month ago and I so far I have no visible on my Old Army (Its stainless), I better not damage it, I bought it new in 1976.  I thought the pellets would work well to get re-started on BP shooting, guess I will stop with Pyrodex.

 I would hate to try and remove the TC breech plug, I hope to recover the barrel by lapping this weekend.  I will cast up a lead slug and use valve lapping compound and see where that takes me.  Its pretty fine compound, but I have quite a bit of it.

Years ago,in the old Buckskin Report were articles condemning the practice of using a long cheater wrench to install the cast breech plugs in TC barrels.It created stresses thru the last thread that caused them to fail with catastrophic results. I still have a short section of one of these barrels I have had for YEARS and it has an over tightened plug that a BIG man,6'8" and 365 pounds couldn't break loose. I cut the barrel off in front of the threads and saved it for reasons unknown. The barrel itself was forged into pipe tomahawks.
Lapping a crapped out barrel will not save it and will only cut whatever driving side is left in the rifling.
Get a new barrel and forget saving junk.

Bob Roller

Online EC121

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #20 on: May 13, 2016, 09:16:28 PM »
If you are only shooting Maxi-balls and accuracy is OK, then polish it good with scotchbrite and shoot it.
Brice Stultz

Online smylee grouch

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #21 on: May 13, 2016, 09:43:42 PM »
If you should decide to lapp it I'm wondering if lapping from the breech end would be better, progressively more at the breech end toward the muzzle thus creating a some what tapered bore. Any ones thoughts on this?

Offline mikeyr

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #22 on: May 16, 2016, 04:20:56 AM »
seems to be way better with just evaporust, I was able to shoot 8 rounds before feeling the roughness in the bore and a simple brush job cleaned it up, maybe i don't need a new barrel after all :)
...let's finish a rifle I started back in the 70's...

Offline WadePatton

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #23 on: May 16, 2016, 06:22:36 AM »
Well that's good news.  It might smooth out even more with use.

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Offline Scota4570

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Re: lapping to remove rust
« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2016, 05:50:48 PM »
If you should decide to lapp it I'm wondering if lapping from the breech end would be better, progressively more at the breech end toward the muzzle thus creating a some what tapered bore. Any ones thoughts on this?

You have to lap from the breech end.  You need to be able to cast the lap.  For ML barrels I make a guide that threads in to the breech plug threads.  Definitely don't want to wear the muzzle larger.  Even with a new unbreeched barrel I would never consider lapping it backwards.  A tight muzzle is good.  

"Lapping a crapped out barrel will not save it and will only cut whatever driving side is left in the rifling."

I wonder about that.  Rifling has been made in many form.  Oval bore, rounded lands and grooves, hexagon,  and all have been claimed to have advantages.  Today one can buy round bottom rifling.  Has anyone done any actual testing to say that rounded over driving edges of the rifling is not good?   
« Last Edit: May 16, 2016, 10:27:37 PM by Scota4570 »