From: Robert Wieland (
Subject: Water Damage
Newsgroups: rec.guns
Date: 1998/09/04
Last night, I found I had a problem.  I have a cheaper-grade steel gun
"safe" in my basement, where I keep my "second string" of guns. Lately I
have had some trouble with wetness on the basement floor. But last night
I opened the basement cabinet to find the guns sitting on a waterlogged
piece of foam; water had collected under the cabinet, getting deep enough
to come in through the cracks where the floor joins the walls, and soak
into the foam bottom covering.
I now have a bunch of guns afflicted with rust, in varying degrees. I
plan to go the slow route, with a weekly generous application of oil,
after using a cloth patch to remove last week's coat. I have had, in the
past, very good luck with Microil from Kano Laboratories for this. It
seems to be a "converting" oil, which actually changes red rust to
triferric tetroxide (hammerscale). I have a piece of what started as
rusted bright steel that was given this soak-and-wipe treatment for a full
year, and that entire rod is now "black oxide finished". Maybe it won't
work as I hope, but at least I'm pretty sure oil and cloth patches are
harmless, I won't make anything worse.
But, more serious, those guns that were sitting with their butts on the
soaked foam bottom foam have waterlogged stocks. In every case, these
heel of the stock has swelled so that it is larger than the
buttplate/recoil pad. What is recommended for that? For the present, the
stocks are being air-dried near a dehumidifier. Is there a better plan?
Can I expect the swelling to go down, and the wood to return to something
like its original dimensions? Should I expect that these will
expand/warp/check into unusability, such that I should start saving for a
half-dozen new stocks?
One observation I must make is that the guns in that safe were
protected with a number of different products, including Microil, RIG
grease, Sheath, and Break-Free PCL (CLP without the teflon). All the guns
that came out rust-free were protected with Sheath; not all Sheath-ed guns
were rustless, but no other product produced a rust-free gun in this
unintended "test". The product that "finished second" for least rust was
Microil. Surprising that "old reliable" and "modern wonderstuff" came in

Robert Wieland
Neither Yankee nor Dixie, east of the Mason-Dixon line (look it up).
You can't go faster than light, you can't get colder than absolute
zero, and you can't help somebody by not telling them the truth.