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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Many of us have used Gunslick and other graphite lubricants for many years, and they are often recommended in articles as low temperature lubes when applied as a thin film.

But today I noticed in the Wikipedia entry that graphite can promote pitting in stainless (uncommon in guns years ago, but common now); and promote corrosion in aluminum (common for pistol frames), to the point that all aircraft use has been prohibited.

So it's time to take it out of our cleaning kits!
 

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Never jumped on the graphite bandwagon so I'm good to go here. I've always used regular gun oil but have switched to a synthetic based one now.
 

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Have never used graphite.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Further Note:
Most aluminum in firearms is anodized, which means the surface is no longer aluminum, but instead aluminum oxide, which is a hard ceramic, and immune to almost anything. Indeed you can burn up a drill bit by a slow advance into an unbroken anodized surface. But where the aluminum has been drilled, machined, filed or dinged after anodizing, raw aluminum is exposed, and then and the naturally forming oxide layer is too thin to protect it from corrosive agents. Graphite, being a conductor, enables electrolytic corrosion where the dissimilar metals are otherwise properly isolated. Anodizing (aluminum oxide) is an excellent insulator, so it protects from electrolytic corrosion as well when unbroken.
 

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I think the galvanic corrosion is the real issue, and having mating parts between dissimilar metals is not very common on most guns. One common exception is the mating of the upper and barrel extension on the AR-15, where using a non-conducting grease on the threads and extension is an established practice. Maybe the mating surface between a pistol with a stainless slide and blued frame would be another example.
 

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You read my mind cooden. But as I think of it, I think it's actually molybdenum disulphide, rather than graphite. Hopefully, anyway.
 

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Any links about this besides wiki? I never use graphite anyway but legit sources are usually better!
 

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LOL

this is like an oil thread on the BMW motorcycle forums...

it's oil...use whatever you have on the shelf...it'll be fine. I've used 10W 30 for MANY years....my firearms all work great.
 

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LOL

this is like an oil thread on the BMW motorcycle forums...

it's oil...use whatever you have on the shelf...it'll be fine. I've used 10W 30 for MANY years....my firearms all work great.
Oh god. Not the oil threads. I think there's multiple oil threads on every motorsport forum there is.
 

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I use to use it all the time on aluminum Tree stands only. The stuff I had was in a tube, it would puff out like baby powder, I used in the places it bolted together with plastic washer, it would silent the stand in a instant.
 

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Graphite will not cause galvanic corrosion, as it is not a metal. Alumnium and Stainless Steel WILL galvonically corrode in the present of a salt (sweat, water w/minerals). I have seen it happen first hand. Aluminum is always coated with Aluminum oxide. Anodizing thickens the layer. Take some aluminum and buff it with a white wheel, it will appear shiny. Set it down on a table and come back in a few minutes and it will be dull. That dull layer is the aluminum oxide layer that just formed, it's that fast. It's what makes aluminum so corrosion resistant.

Long story short, I use Rem Oil, 3- in - 1, CLP, and when I need grease, white lithium.
 

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Graphite does not cause galvanic corrosion, but it does increase its rate in some instances. Case in point - when you mount a steel barrel nut to a aluminum upper on an AR15 with graphite based lube. As the barrel nut is torqued in place, you should expect that the thin layer of aluminum oxide on the upper threads is breached, and the graphite lube is directly in contact with the bare metal on the upper and possibly the barrel nut as well.

That example is the only one I am aware of where this is actually found to be a real life problem, and even then not in all instances. Just incidental contact between dissimilar metals is not enough, otherwise ARs would be falling apart at everyplace there is a steel/aluminum junction (castle nut, various pins the lower, gas tube in the FSB, etc).

I do not use much dry graphite just because it makes such a mess and does not stay in place very well on moving parts. Moly disulfide dry lubes are probably a better bet if you like dry lube.

I do not have to rely on my guns for a living, so I just use RemOil for storage and BreakFree CLP for routine moving parts. I use both mostly because they are relatively cheap and they come in conveniently sized packages. When I run out of them, I will probably just switch to synthetic motor oil.
 
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