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Firearms Maintenance and Storage

Monday, 21 January 2013 00:43 Written by 

There are some very serious legal changes headed our way in regards to the ownership of firearms by private citizens. Regardless of the language being used and reported by the lame stream media now, make no mistake that the eventual goal of our current gaggle of far left leaning law makers is the total disarmament of the American people. For example; the government is talking about strengthening methods of preventing people with mental health issues from being able to purchase or legally own firearms. View our YouTube video - Burial Vaults, Firearms, and Geo-caching

The down side to this suggestion is its true meaning; if you have ever had an appointment to speak with a mental health care provider and a patient chart was completed, you can bet the farm you will be added into a government database and deemed mentally unfit to own a firearm. If your general practitioner has, or has in the past, prescribed an antidepressant medication for you; you will be added to the mentally unstable list. The fact that the government is now the overall health care administration clearinghouse for the nation, doctor / patient confidentiality will become a thing of the past.

Legislation being proposed by Dianne Feinstein (Democretin, CA.) looks to ban the sale, transfer, importation and manufacture of certain firearms. The “transfer” means, when you die, your otherwise grandfathered firearm(s) cannot be willed or probated to a spouse or offspring. They will have to be turned over to the government or your family member(s) will face prosecution.  

There are many more suggestions and legislation being proposed and the language in all are open ended. The question you have to ask yourself is; if it comes down to you, will you be a good, law abiding citizen and turn in your firearms? Or, will you make the decision to hold true to the rights to keep and bear arms, as provided for in the Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America?

I am not here to judge and I will not suggest or recommend that anyone violate the law… no matter how tyrannical. Therefore, if you are of a mind to accept the will of the current administration and are likely to turn in your firearms when the time comes; you may as well read no further. On the other hand…

Maintaining Your Firearms

My first recommendation is that you purchase detailed manuals for each of your firearms. Although your firearm(s) most likely came with an “owner’s manual,” they will not provide you with detailed instructions to totally disassemble / reassemble the weapon. You will want to be able to do what most folks pay a gunsmith for. Detailed manuals can be found at Brownell’s website or Midway USA’s website. Some can be found through Amazon. com and some just by typing in your weapon’s make and model, with the word “manual” into an online search string.

Once you have the manual in hand, look for the section that lists the specific specialty tools that are required to perform the dis-assembly / reassembly operations. DO NOT assume that you can use any makeshift tool as you are likely to find yourself between a rock and a hard place once the stuff hits the fan and you may not be able to beg, borrow or steal the needed tool(s). Again, Brownell’s and Midway USA are your best options for finding tools.

The next step, after you have the manual, is to determine the small parts of your weapon that are more likely to fail, break or be lost during dis-assembly / reassembly. I realize this may be difficult for many, especially without gunsmith experience. Consider buying all of the small parts.  I further realize what I am suggesting is costly; but it may be prudent to buy several of each part since again, they may become severely scarce after the SHTF.    

There are several types of lubricants available that I would recommend you purchase, such as Break Free CLP, Slip 2000, or M-Pro 7. While Break Free, Slip 2000, and M-Pro 7 make for excellent cleaners and lubricants for moving parts, they are also claimed to be good for weapon storage. However, Italian Gun Grease (IGG) is a far superior choice for long term storage under more harsh conditions, where temperature swings and moisture are a concern.

Under normal circumstances I would not recommend this for the faint of heart or those who are severely lacking in mechanical aptitude. But I fear we are at a fork in the road wherein you have to wrap your head around the need and get your mechanical mindset fully on. This will be, after all, a Prepper required knowledge.

Spread out a bath size towel or rubber mat on a table top. Both will do a decent job of preventing small parts from bouncing off the table and onto the floor should a part fall, or be launched from under spring pressure. They also work well in keeping round parts from rolling off your table. I keep a four inch magnet, with an eye-bolt  handy when parts hit the carpeted runner on the floor below my workbench. However, I have dropped parts that have remained in hiding for months before being found.

With your detailed manual and weapon at hand, and your safety glasses on, begin the dis-assembly process by reading each step a couple of times before committing to action. The manuals are usually pretty good at letting you know when a spring, or part under spring pressure, is likely to launch. The manuals are also pretty good about including photos and / or written descriptions as from where these parts may be launched. I have gotten into the habit of pressing my stomach against the edge of my bench and turning the parts in an orientation wherein if I fumble the launch with my fingers, the spring or part will strike my chest and either cling to my shirt or fall off onto the mat on the bench top.    

As you remove parts, take as much time as needed to commit the parts and their orientation to at least short term memory. It helps a lot when it comes time for reassembly. Sometimes, photos and written descriptions just don’t cut it. If it helps, take your own photos as you go along. I use clear plastic partitioned boxes (small parts organizers) to prevent mixing screws, springs and roll pins of similar appearance but definite dimension differences. You can also use these to keep parts in a logical order for reassembly.

When you have completed disassembling the weapon, read the manual and visualize the reassembly sequence. When you feel ready, reassemble the weapon. This is a confidence building exercise, so when you have completed the reassembly, disassemble then reassemble it again. As time allows, do the same with any / all other weapons you own.

Long Term Storage

Once again, I am not suggesting that anyone knowingly violate the law. You have to do what YOUR better sense tells you.

If it is your intent to keep your firearms, it would be best to store them off of your property. I don’t know which authorities would be tasked with the job of confiscation, nor to what extent they might go to conduct a search. I have a serious gut feeling, though, that hiding them in walls, false ceilings, attics, crawl spaces, or by back yard burial won’t be a truly unique concept. And to tell the truth, I am not trusting of the idea of storing my firearms at a public storage facility. Their security is not exactly what one would call legendary.  

I believe burying firearms at a remote location would be a more secure way to go; with public land, such as parks or national forests, being the better choices. Burial on someone else’s private property, whether you know the owner or not, could open them up for criminal liability. I wouldn’t want to stick my worst enemy with the potential liability of being charged as an accomplice if my firearms were found on that property.

A high quality burial tube, or vault, for your firearms can be home made, using “schedule 40” PVC pipe and fittings. PVC pipe, fittings, cleaner, and adhesive can be purchased at builder supply and home stores. Most handguns will fit into six inch diameter pipe while most long guns will fit in eight inch diameter. PVC pipe is usually sold in ten foot lengths; though some stores will offer it in five foot pieces. You will need to measure the length of each of your weapons (plus four inches) to determine how many feet of pipe will be required. You will also need one end cap and one screw on cap with collar for each weapon.

Note: Some rifles, such as an AR platform style with a carry handle, may require the removal of the pistol grip to allow the weapon to fit into the eight inch tube.

Method 1 – Flexible Pipe Cap Method (Recommended): (1) Cut the pipe with a hacksaw, keeping the ends as close to perfectly straight as possible. This will help to insure a solid air / water tight fit. (2) Install the bottom flexible pipe cap. (3) Place objects inside of tube. (4) Install the top flexible pipe cap.

Method 2 - PVC End Cap / Plug Method: To assemble: (1) Cut the pipe with a hacksaw, keeping the ends as close to perfectly straight as possible. This will help to insure a solid air / water tight fit. (2) Clean one outside end of pipe and the inside wall of an end cap with PVC cleaner (an absolute requirement). (3) Then apply the PVC adhesive to the same pipe end and interior cap wall. (4) Press the two pieces together with a twist motion and maintain pressure for a few seconds. (5) Next, prepare the other end of the pipe and the interior of the screw on cap collar with the PVC cleaner (keep the screw on cap off and away). (6) Then apply the PVC adhesive to both the pipe end and the collar interior and press on the collar with a twist. (7) As before, hold it in place for a few seconds as the adhesive sets. (8) At this point, you can screw on the threaded end cap to inspect the completed project.

When the Time Comes

When you feel sure the time has come to bury your weapons, you will have to completely disassemble each (one at a time) and coat all of the parts, cylinders, chambers and barrels (inside and out) with Italian Gun Grease. Do not be fooled by the name “stainless steel” because it most assuredly will rust; just not as quickly as carbon steel.

Treat all of the weapon specific spare parts with Italian Gun Grease and place into a separate vacuum bag and seal. Once treated with the grease, place the weapon in a vacuum seal bag, along with the spare parts bag, several packets of a moisture desiccant and a 2000 cc oxygen absorber, then vacuum and seal the bag. Place the weapon in the pipe along several moisture desiccant packs and a 2000 cc oxygen absorber. Screw on the threaded end cap and you are good to go.

Assuming you have pre-scouted and selected your burial locations, entered the locations into a GPS (or recorded the coordinates), AND created written directions and / or a map (just in case some unexpected event renders GPS satellites useless), it’s time to bury your weapons.

I suggest you learn the frost line for the ground in the area you plan the burial. You will want to dig below the frost line for the burial because the ground temperature will remain near constant year round. Temperature swings are an unstable factor that is likely to cause condensation within the burial vault. Even with oxygen absorbers, moisture desiccant, and a grease coating, why tempt fate?

I highly suggest you bury only one firearm per location so that if one should be discovered, you don’t lose all. Be mindful of the fact that with GPS, “X” does not necessarily mark the exact spot. There is always a bit of a fudge factor, up to a few feet, so record distances from landmarks. Land features can change, and you might be leaving instructions for someone else to follow.

I highly recommend you bury all ammunition, and in separate locations, just like your weapons. Nothing is going to call your bluff of having no weapons like having several thousand rounds of ammo stacked up in your basement. Military ammo cans with good rubber seals and an exterior coating of automotive rust inhibitor will work fine. Just don’t forget the moisture desiccant packets.

Firearm magazines should be disassembled and treated with Italian Grease. Some magazines have plastic bodies, some have aluminum bodies, and some are steel. The magazine springs and most followers are made of steel. You need to treat the steel parts. Magazines, like ammunition, can be buried in ammo cans.

At such time that you decide to exhume your firearm(s), it will be necessary to disassemble them to remove the grease. Be very sure to remove all grease from inside the barrel because, if forgotten, it is likely to cause excessive pressures when fired and cause serious injury or death.

Final Statement

May God bless America and protect us from those intent on taking away our freedoms.

Last modified on Tuesday, 09 April 2013 22:20
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1 comment

  • Comment Link Dale York Saturday, 26 January 2013 11:35 posted by Dale York

    Good coverage of the subject. I like to scalability of the "geocaching tubes"

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