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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Through the great information found on this website and others I made the plunge and purchased what I think is a great looking C96.

While looking over the firearm I found under the grips a large collection of rust, a bit of greenery and maybe bits of mud...several other areas showed bits of grime and the barrel looks good except for a long, light thin line or orange rust running the length. I am currently waiting for it to be released from gun jail in a week and figured I would get myself ready for a full takedown.

What are my best options in this case? I want to conserve the pistol to stop further deterioration without ruining the wood or finish of the pistol. From what I read on the FAQ bronze wool with lots of oil is the answer for lugers, is that the case here? Some fine bronze wool with lots of oil for the metal parts and maybe a rough dry cloth wipedown for the wood? For the barrel would it be a good idea to do a bronze brush run through a few times? unfortunately I did not snap a photo of the barrel but I will if needed in a week when I have it. is this treatment good for the interiors as well or should I approach the delicates in a different fashion?

Lastly, for storage in a small place, any suggestions for cases to reduce further deterioration?

Thank you for any help you are able to give, I am excited to be here. :]

SSU_C96_01.jpg SSU_Grip_01.jpg SSU_Handle_01.jpg
 

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49438, Red 9. It is very good except this rust..

If I were the owner, I would disassemble it and soak the rusted parts in kroil for a week, then use 0000 steel wool to remove major rust, then use copper brush removing the rust in pits. After cleanup, apply a thin layer of grease over the pits.
 

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Through the great information found on this website and others I made the plunge and purchased what I think is a great looking C96.

While looking over the firearm I found under the grips a large collection of rust, a bit of greenery and maybe bits of mud...several other areas showed bits of grime and the barrel looks good except for a long, light thin line or orange rust running the length. I am currently waiting for it to be released from gun jail in a week and figured I would get myself ready for a full takedown.

What are my best options in this case? I want to conserve the pistol to stop further deterioration without ruining the wood or finish of the pistol. From what I read on the FAQ bronze wool with lots of oil is the answer for lugers, is that the case here? Some fine bronze wool with lots of oil for the metal parts and maybe a rough dry cloth wipedown for the wood? For the barrel would it be a good idea to do a bronze brush run through a few times? unfortunately I did not snap a photo of the barrel but I will if needed in a week when I have it. is this treatment good for the interiors as well or should I approach the delicates in a different fashion?

Lastly, for storage in a small place, any suggestions for cases to reduce further deterioration?

Thank you for any help you are able to give, I am excited to be here. :]

View attachment 646683 View attachment 646684 View attachment 646685
 

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After removing the rust, probably better to apply Renaissance Wax over the cleaned area. That is better than grease. Grease will stain the wood panel, wax will not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
49438, Red 9. It is very good except this rust..

If I were the owner, I would disassemble it and soak the rusted parts in kroil for a week, then use 0000 steel wool to remove major rust, then use copper brush removing the rust in pits. After cleanup, apply a thin layer of grease over the pits.
Thank you! I feel very fortunate, even with the work I need to do.

interesting! I will look into this kroil treatment as a solution... I assume it does not affect the original finishing? Yeah this thing certainly needs oil and grease to say the least, hah... ah, so any metal surface that touches the wood grips wax up? I saw your original comment so here is the additional photo of the 9, still trying to figure out if the gloss is original or not... and thank you for your response!
 

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Alvin has some good advice. I have said it before ..bronze wool on rust blued guns leaves a gold looking hue..a color that ain't right. 0000 steel wool used with LOTS of oil is better IMO. I would break down this pistol and wash it good with a toothbrush in mineral spirits to remove and dried grease & old oil. Pour a quart of motor oil in a plastic hospital bed pan and dipping your 0000 wool in it..rub it in all the places you want...You might have to rinse & repeat several times. I always rinse/clean good with the paint thinner then hold your part in a bright ray of sunshine. This will illuminate any spots you missed & need further attention. I also make good use of a compressor to spray high pressure air. Careful not to blow away any small parts.
Alvin's mention of a copper or brass brush is good for deep spots you can't reach otherwise. Just work carefully and closely inspect as you go till you get where you want to go.
At the end of cleaning I take a shaving brush and using sewing machine/fishing reel/or household oil, I liberally oil all the parts for re assembly.
 
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Kroil does not affect gun finish. And, unlike other oil, kroil flows like water.

It has a smell though, better put a cover over the oil container. Otherwise, wife could get mad.
 

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I store my firearms in a silicone impregnated gun sock, and keep that within a zipper gun "rug" case in my safe.

The silicone impregnated gun socks can help keep moisture away from the firearm. I live an an area that can get humid in the summer. I keep a plug in dry stick inside my safe, and that is in an air conditioned environment.

Occasionally you need to inspect your firearms, and clean them if any active corrosion (rust) is starting to show.

Note that it's normal to see red oxide deep in the finish of an older blued firearm. This is visible under good sunlight with a microscope. Active rust to the visible eye that is leading to pitting needs to be removed with the oil and 0000 steel wool process Jerry mentioned. Don't rub too hard, or you will gall the surface and hurt the thin bluing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Alvin has some good advice. I have said it before ..bronze wool on rust blued guns leaves a gold looking hue..a color that ain't right. 0000 steel wool used with LOTS of oil is better IMO. I would break down this pistol and wash it good with a toothbrush in mineral spirits to remove and dried grease & old oil. Pour a quart of motor oil in a plastic hospital bed pan and dipping your 0000 wool in it..rub it in all the places you want...You might have to rinse & repeat several times. I always rinse/clean good with the paint thinner then hold your part in a bright ray of sunshine. This will illuminate any spots you missed & need further attention. I also make good use of a compressor to spray high pressure air. Careful not to blow away any small parts.
Alvin's mention of a copper or brass brush is good for deep spots you can't reach otherwise. Just work carefully and closely inspect as you go till you get where you want to go.
At the end of cleaning I take a shaving brush and using sewing machine/fishing reel/or household oil, I liberally oil all the parts for re assembly.
Ah perfect! yeah I have heard bronze wool, but now knowing that it can leave that kind of hue, that's great to know! I will look into getting some 0000 for sure. I will look into getting some mineral oil for the grease removal, taking a peek inside I did notice a substantial buildup of old grease mixed with other gunk... I appreciate this multiple layer approach you have here! I certainly need to get more oil, hah.

Once I have finished the process I will certainly take some before and after shots for everyone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I store my firearms in a silicone impregnated gun sock, and keep that within a zipper gun "rug" case in my safe.

The silicone impregnated gun socks can help keep moisture away from the firearm. I live an an area that can get humid in the summer. I keep a plug in dry stick inside my safe, and that is in an air conditioned environment.

Occasionally you need to inspect your firearms, and clean them if any active corrosion (rust) is starting to show.

Note that it's normal to see red oxide deep in the finish of an older blued firearm. This is visible under good sunlight with a microscope. Active rust to the visible eye that is leading to pitting needs to be removed with the oil and 0000 steel wool process Jerry mentioned. Don't rub too hard, or you will gall the surface and hurt the thin bluing.
I certainly plan on doing regular inspections, and when the time comes to pass it along I want the same, if not better condition it was when I got it. I have purchased some silicone socks but heard that the silicone can build up on the outside of the firearm and be difficult to remove.. any experience with that? would a standard sock in between mitigate that?
 

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NOT mineral oil. Mineral SPIRITS. Paint thinner. I use cheap products because they are cheap and they work. You can spend a LOT of money on fancy space age gun products but most of this expensive stuff came about relatively recently. What's really good and what's snake oil is up for discussion but the real key to maintaining a vintage arm is diligence as Marc indicates. Keep an eye on them. Ordinary household oil is a wonderful thing if you use it regularly.
 

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So called 0000 steel wool from big-box stores is abrasive junk from China, a byproduct of milling saturated in dried cutting oil and you do not know what you are getting (different hardness). You are lucky to get 000 labeled as 0000. Stay away from Chinese steel wool!!!

Instead buy a box of BRIWAX steel wool (U.K. / German) it is actually made as steel wool instead of being a byproduct. And it is clean from cutting oil. Anybody using this, knows what I am writing about.

Everybody has an opinion on oils and what works for them.

Anthony
 

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All in all, your rusty pistol is a lot better than most C96. The way the grips are made and their interface to the frame, they trap moisture in there. As I said, yours looks better than most. Enjoy it...Bill
 

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I will give three possible responses as I pretend to be three different collectors with different views.

1. I highly recommend you leave it alone and allow the "patina" to cure over the years as it is sacrilegious to intervene with the natural progression of a firearms history.

2. I highly recommend you use gun oil and #0000 steel wool or brass wool and remove the rust as it needs to be dealt with before the gun deteriorates further. You must protect it!

3. I highly recommend you conserve it by conversion of the rus....ACK!!...

Apologies, the first two guys have sacked this last guy. He is considered an abomination. You really only have two options. Please review those.
 

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1. I highly recommend you leave it alone and allow the "patina" to cure over the years as it is sacrilegious to intervene with the natural progression of a firearms history.

2. I highly recommend you use gun oil and #0000 steel wool or brass wool and remove the rust as it needs to be dealt with before the gun deteriorates further. You must protect it!


Good advice right here. I generally subscribe to number 2. I'm glad they sacked the third guy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
With everyone's suggestions I made the order for several materials to get started carefully removing the worst of the rust... thank you!

Anthony I saw your comment just as I was looking up wools so perfect timing in that regards.
Hah! I am going with option two with all the care I can Jovial, but I did see a youtube video about boiling the rust to convert it? I assume that is VERY not recommended?
I would be curious about that as well Joe, I have heard people saying they do and do not... I certainly want to experience it at least once given everything on the inside is good to go, the frequency after that I will play it by ear, certainly not an every day at the range sort of deal, hah... I know my dad would get a kick out it as well.

also here are a few more full photos just because being able to find a lot of photo references online from various sources helped me immensely with identification.
 

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