What can anyone recommend to remove copper fouling. I have been using the Barnes solvent, but I do not know when I get all the copper out because of the bore brushes. I have tried some nylon bore brushes, but they were of poor quality and did not last a single cleaning.
Wipeout, Butch's bore shine, & Sweets will all remove copper pretty effectively. I tried Wipeout on a rifle that I had cleaned previously with both Butch's & Sweets. I had not fired the rifle since, Wipeout apppeared to remove even more copper from the barrel. Wipeout is not supposed to be as harsh as most of the copper solvents on the market also.
I can't even imagine what happened to your nylon brushes in a single cleaning, mine last for years.
Barnes CR-10 is extremely effective on copper fouling but may be hard on barrel steel too. I would not exceed the recommended max time period to leave that stuff in the bore. Normally, to check for remaining copper fouling just run 2 wet patches down the bore and wait for 2 minutes. Then push a wet patch through and look for the classic blue/green residue. Never use bronze brushes with these aggresive cleaners.
When really stubborn fouling is present I have found it effective to switch between chemical cleaning (CR-10, BBS, Montana Extreme, etc) and mechanical cleaning (JB compound, USP Paste, etc) and then back again if copper is still present.
I have also found "Wipe Out" bore foam to work well and spares you the wear and tear of brushing. It is very effective when used with there "Accelerator".
I can't find the Wipeout anywhere in shops down here in TX and can't find a dealer that has heard of it. Most are pushing the Break-Free bore foam. Is it close to the same? Can someone recommend an online site I can get it from cheap? I'd love to try it on my Sweetshooter treated barrel. It is supposed to retard Cu and C fouling greatly, but I don't know if it is removing all the Cu or not. I know it removes lots of C fouling other cleaners leave behind, but I want to be certain I get the Cu out.
I pretty much agree with Varmint Hunter on switching. Here is why. This may not be at all true but it is what I think goes on.
The bullet goes down the bore first leaving a smear of copper and it is followed by a cloud of burning gas leaving a coating of carbon. The next bullet comes down the barrel compressing the last coating of carbon and smearing copper on it followed by more burning gas coating the copper with carbon. The layering effect may make the gun easy or hard to clean it just depends on which layer is the worst.
Guns that are predominantly copper fouled are cleaned not by mechanical action of brushing but chemical action of dissolving. Use lots and lots of liquid such as CR10, coppermelt, Sweets. If you hit a layer of powder then changing to a powder solvent such as Bore shine GMTEC and a brush will get you through the powder back to the copper. Once back to the copper go back to lots of liquid. (Some people get upset if things get to technical but each liquid has a Ksp for copper and being as we do not know what the solubility product is, I just use the chemistry theorem that the speed of the reaction is driven by the concentration and that lots of liquid speeds up the process). For something really expensive such as copper melt it hurts the billfold to use lots of liquid so people swab for a good while with just a few drops because they are willing for the reaction to be slow and trade their time for money.
Further each solvent has a slightly different chemical composition and will react slightly differently with the copper and in the pores of the barrel you can get some copper that is covered with solvent of one kind and no longer reacting but when you switch solvents you will suddenly get more copper out. So when you think the copper is gone switch and see. Jimm posted some results yesterday where one solvent indicated that the barrel was clean but switching solvent showed just a little more. I think this is what you will always find and I think that the gun is for all practical purposes clean except for the pore space and I do not think you want the copper out of the pores. Having the pores filled (even with copper) make the barrel smoother. I think one of the reasons I like to switch solvents is that it makes the chore a little more interesting . It may or may not get the gun cleaner any quicker. Its what I do.
I use foam on my 17 Rem. It sits for about 15 minutes while I work on something else and I come back and patch it out and it gets both copper and powder relatively decently. When it is about half clean I switch to copper melt. I try not to waste coppermelt on powder fouling.
Now then if you want to be discouraged go to Speedy Gonzales is web site and wander around thinking you have either been abducted by space aliens or got too much LSD on the last sugar cube. Buried in there under FAQ is a recommendation on dealing with powder fouling and he says to put Iossa bore paste in the barrel and let it sit overnight and all carbon will be turned to the most obnoxious black goo you have ever seen. It will have the consistency of 10 year old u joint grease and will stain anything it touches. I finally got some of the stuff and it is goooooood sttuff!!!! The man may have a weird website but he knows some things. After you think that you have the copper gone out of your barrel put some Iossa in it and swab it around and then go back to your copper solution and you may be amazed at the layering issue I refer to at the top. Or you may not. Try it and see.
I also got some TM but it has not got a fair test because I started the guns off Sunday with the Iossa.
I do not make any claim to having conducted any real scientific experiments on any of this stuff.