Gun cleaning and, if this process is not carried out properly, the concomitant wear of small arms are real problems in the armies of the world, acute and important for several centuries now.
Immediately, it should be noted that such physicochemical processes as the burning of gunpowder, corrosion and wear of metals, their etching and oxidation, are rather well studied, and the necessary technical solutions are generally found. Nevertheless, the improvement of chemical agents is possible and necessary, but not at a fundamental, but at a more applied level, i.e. in terms of specific consumer properties.
Gun cleaning in modern armies
Speaking about the innovative component of modern, mainly civilian and imported, weapons chemistry, it should be noted that they are not fundamentally breakthrough, representing first of all the most successful variations of already known solutions.
Shooting small arms in the Russian army
In the Russian army, in stationary army conditions, the composition of the RFS (stem cleaning solution), which is made from water, ammonium carbonate and potassium dichromate, is often used to clean weapons. Similar formulations have been used for about a century. For example, Soviet patent No. 8392 of 1926 describes a method for removing gunpowder and copper channels of artillery guns with aqueous solutions of ammonium carbonate with the addition of hydrogen peroxide.
RFS is made in an amount that satisfies the daily need, since the composition even in small quantities and in an airtight container can be stored no more than a week.
Weapon cleaning in the armies of NATO and US countries
In the armies of the western countries as a whole, a more favorable picture is observed. For example, inexpensive general-purpose oils, such as Ballistol and CLP (cleaner, lubricant and preservative), are common in Germany and the United States, removing carbon deposits and facilitating the removal of copper and lead.
In the armies of the countries of NATO and the USA, ready-made compounds are used to clean the copper, lead, and gunpowder.