Gunlube For The Masses: Red Oil

Gunlube For The Masses: Red Oil

Decades ago, I spent some time at the National Guard Marksmanship Training Unit Small Arms shop outside an Air Guard base in Nashville, Tenn., learning to make old Government Model pistols shoot tiny little groups. These guns were tightly fitted and required lots of lubrication to function reliably.

The resident gunsmiths at NGMTU tended to be Old School types who made their own tools and custom parts. Scattered around on the workbenches among the vises, files, hammers and general gunsmith paraphernalia were small plastic bottles of red lubricant we used as a general purpose gun oil while we fitted parts and lubed complete guns.

John Browning's finest creation seemed to thrive on this Red Oil as did the High Standard .22s, S&W 52s and other target pistols hanging around. A quart of gun oil will last most people 20 years or more. This recipe makes enough for you and four or five of your friends, so don't be stingy with it. Share the wealth.

The ingredients are as close as your nearest auto parts store. I keep a quart under my work bench and two or three small bottles are positioned at strategic locations around the shop. Take a bottle to hunting camp to wipe down those old deer-slayers when they come in out of the rain. Amaze your friend when you show him that his Remington 742 Woodsblaster actually functions better lubricated than bone dry. This sticky red stuff is the SKS of gun lubes. Cheap and effective. An oil for the masses. Enjoy.


Red Oil recipe:


3 quarts automatic transmission fluid (red F type)

1 quart 10W or 30W non-detergent motor oil

1 pint STP oil treatment

4 ounces Hoppe's #9


Red Oil

The basic ingredients of Red Oil. Considering the size of this Hoppe's bottle, you might think Norcross uses a lot of it. You would be correct.

Red Oil

A plastic squeeze bottle of Red Oil is one of the most-used items on Norcross' bench. It's something that can be made in quantity at a low price.

1911s

Norcross says 1911s seem to thrive on this red stuff. Don't forget the rails. If you clean a lot of guns, this is a great way to cut your lubricant bill.

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Firearms News Reviews the S&W M&P 2.0 9mm Compact Pistol

Firearms News Reviews the S&W M&P 2.0 9mm Compact Pistol

Firearms News editor Vince DeNiro runs the Smith & Wesson M&P 2.0 9mm compact pistol through a self-defense drill.

Transcoded: FANIssue11-SpringfieldEdgeEVAC

Transcoded: FANIssue11-SpringfieldEdgeEVAC

Patrick Sweeney of Firearms News shows off the Springfield Edge AR pistol with a folding arm brace.

3 Ring Silencers

3 Ring Silencers

Patrick Sweeney heads to the range to look at suppressors from 3 Ring Silencer Corporation.

SCCY CPX-4 in .380 ACP

SCCY CPX-4 in .380 ACP

New for 2019 is the SCCY CPX-4, a .380 ACP semi-automatic pistol that extends beyond the existing SCCY CPX-3 line of pistols.

See More Popular Videos

Trending Articles

First fielded during World War I, the Browning Automatic Rifle or BAR went on to serve through World War II, Korea and into Vietnam. Historical

Inside Story on the .30-caliber BAR

Samantha Knight - August 15, 2020

First fielded during World War I, the Browning Automatic Rifle or BAR went on to serve through...

This article will walk you through the process of building a Glock pistol from an 80 percent frame. Gunsmithing

How To Build a Glock From an 80 Percent Frame

Gus Norcross - August 13, 2020

This article will walk you through the process of building a Glock pistol from an 80 percent...

While Germany is the Edenic home of modern sniping, they were always one step behind the Soviets during World War II, despite fielding some excellent sniper rifles. Rifles

German Sniper Rifles of World War I and II

David M. Fortier - August 13, 2020

While Germany is the Edenic home of modern sniping, they were always one step behind the...

Virginia Republican Rep. Glenn Davis introduced two pro-2A measures in a special session that are designed to partially roll back some restrictive laws. 2nd Amendment

Fighting Back in Virginia

Mark Chesnut - August 24, 2020

Virginia Republican Rep. Glenn Davis introduced two pro-2A measures in a special session that...

See More Trending Articles

More Handguns

How will the Ruger-57 pistol change the 5.7x28mm market? Handguns

Ruger-57 5.7x28mm Pistol Review

David M. Fortier - July 23, 2020

How will the Ruger-57 pistol change the 5.7x28mm market?

The SIG Sauer P220 10mm Legion pistol is a handful of awesome. Handguns

SIG Sauer P220 10mm Legion Pistol Review

James Tarr - August 03, 2020

The SIG Sauer P220 10mm Legion pistol is a handful of awesome.

The Pioneer Arms 9x18mm PM-63C is a semi-auto pistol version of the Cold War era Polish PDW. Handguns

Pioneer Arms PM-63C Review

David M. Fortier - September 02, 2020

The Pioneer Arms 9x18mm PM-63C is a semi-auto pistol version of the Cold War era Polish PDW.

The Wilson Combat-SIG Sauer WCP320 pistol is now legal for IDPA Stock Service Pistol Class Competition and USPSA Production/Carry Optics Classifications. Handguns

WCP320 Pistol Now Legal for IDPA and USPSA

Firearms News Staff - August 14, 2020

The Wilson Combat-SIG Sauer WCP320 pistol is now legal for IDPA Stock Service Pistol Class...

See More Handguns

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW OUR CURRENT ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get Digital Access.

All Firearms News subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now