Yes, I know that this is an overworked subject, but every now and then something comes across my workbench that deserves some extra attention. And this is especially true if it makes my life a little easier.
Late last fall I ran across a product that is made in my own back yard, so to speak. It is the line of Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Care Products that are made by Novum Solutions, Inc. And I have not been the only one impressed with this innovative new line of gun care products because their new gun bluing solution was voted "Best of Show" at the 2002 S.H.O.T. Show in Las Vegas, in the General Shooting & Hunting category.
It has taken me a few months to prepare this report because before I tell my fellow shooters about a new product or put my name to an article describing it, I like to spend some time testing and researching it. In order to help me with this process, I have a group of "experts" that I have assembled to help with the research and testing that articles of this nature require. After all, one man can't know everything there is to know about our sport of shooting.
There were six team members involved in the process of testing this new gun cleaner. The first is a custom rifle smith, the second is a custom shotgun smith, the third is a member of the US Marine Corps Shooting team, the fourth is a metallurgist, the fifth is a state champion in service pistol competition and the sixth team member is a nationally recognized black powder competitor.
During our testing we each fired between 300 to 2000 rounds through various types of firearms while shooting at everything from paper and metallic targets, to rabbits, varmints, deer, elk, etc. The calibers of the firearms involved range in size from .22 to .458 in cartridge firearms and .36 to .62 in black powder firearms, in both pistols and rifles. It goes without saying, that with this level of shooting we usually spend a good bit of time cleaning our firearms.
If you will recall, back in 1994 the EPA banned the production of all gun cleaners and solvents based upon the chemical 1,1,1 trichloroethane, which was proven to be a carcinogenic. This was replaced with methylene chloride, which has been proven to cause brain hemorrhages or heart stoppages. As a result we shooters were forced to turn to some non-traditional sources for cleaning solvents.
My search for a non-lethal and environmentally safe gun cleaner is what led me to Novum Solutions, Inc., developer of the Blue Wonder(tm) line of Gun Care Products. Being shooters themselves, they decided to take a non-traditional approach when it came to developing a line of gun care products that are "Green" products. This means that in addition to being able to efficiently clean firearms, they had to also be environmentally safe, non-toxic and biodegradable. In these times of environmental concerns, anything that will satisfactorily clean my guns and is earth friendly is good news.
After years of experimenting with various ingredients, including ammonia, Novum's Head of Product Development finally found the correct combination of chemicals that not only provide a thorough cleaning for firearms but also are environmentally safe. And even though along with the other chemicals, Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner does have 3/4 of 1% ammonia, ammonia is not the main cleaning agent in Novum's proprietary formula. It is this secret formula that after comprehensive testing by my team, has been proven to facilitate cleaning the bore, action and exterior of even the dirtiest firearm.
The cleaning process that we developed during our testing starts by running Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner down the bore on a clean patch and then letting it sit for about ten minutes. During this ten-minute wait we would use Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner on the action, bolt, percussion nipple, etc. of the firearm being cleaned. Though Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner was originally intended for cartridge guns, we found that it works well on all of the components of a black powder firearm as well. Then after approximately ten minutes we would run a wire brush down the bore several times before following up with another patch soaked in Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner. Finally we would run several clean dry patches down the bore to remove the remaining Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner before finishing up with a lightly oiled patch. Except in unusually dirty bores, we were finished with our cleaning process after only a few minutes.
Each of my team members agree that so far our testing of Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner has produced excellent results. Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner made the process of removing the plastic sabot residue from black powder shooting, as well as the lead and copper oxide fouling out of our barrels, whether muzzleloaders or cartridge guns, much easier and less time consuming.
A greenish blue tint on our cleaning patches was a visual indication that proved that Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner had removed all unwanted ingredients from the metal surfaces of our firearms. This greenish blue tint is the result of Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner being applied to the lead and copper oxide fouling created by the discharge of the firearm. It breaks them down into a harmless residue or chemical composition that can be easily removed.
The tests that we conducted have shown that Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner not only removes any fouling residue that has been produced during the firing process, but it also strips all of the oils out of the metal of your firearms. It is because of this complete stripping action that Novum's Head of Product Development strongly recommends that you re-oil your firearm inside and out prior to storing it so that you can insure its protection from the elements. For prolonged storage, a good coating of grease would be better for this purpose.
A word of caution is in order here, even though Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner only contains a limited amount of residual ammonia, 3/4 of 1%, I can not stress it enough that you must "neutralize" this ammonia by following Novum's re-oiling recommendation. All it takes is a couple of swipes down the barrel or wipes over the cleaned metal surfaces with a clean patch soaked in a quality gun oil. Then your firearms will be clean and protected until they are ready to be used again.
The true secret to Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner's success is the micro penetrative process that is designed to remove the oxide that bonds the fouling to the lands and grooves of the bore. This oxygen removal capability is accomplished during the manufacturing process by combining the chemicals in the proper proportions within the Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner solution. This removal of the oxygen is based on sound scientific principals, as it has been proven that oxygen is the reactive agent that is the main cause of rust and corrosion in metal.
After using Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner on all of my firearms, both cartridge and black powder for the past few months, I believe that I have found a permanent fixture in my gun cleaning kit. Though Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner is not the panacea for all of my firearm maintenance needs, it is the easiest way that I have found to remove sabot residue, powder residue as well as lead and copper fouling. Also, Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner is one of the first in a new generation of firearm maintenance products that is safe for both the environment and me.
Give Blue Wonder(tm) Gun Cleaner a try and see if you think this line of gun care products should have been voted the best new product the 2002 S.H.O.T. show. I think you will be as pleased as we were.