Copper Clad

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Is it always better to get copper clad ammo for a 22 rimfire?

I may have read to stay away from all-lead bullets because they easily foul barrels. Is that true?

Here's another opinion that lots of you might not like.

The copper on .22 Long Rifle bullets is just a wash, not a jacket. All .22 Long Rifle bullets are pure lead, or nearly so. You can scrape the wash off with a fingernail. Try it. The shiny metal that reveals is lead.

All this talk about unwashed .22 ammo causing loads of fouling is probably the result of corroded, pitted barrels. No .22 Long Rifle load, even the so-called High Velocity rounds, pushes the bullet fast enough to cause lead fouling in a properly rifled, undamaged bore. If you are getting fouling, you have other problems.

Lead bullets can be pushed to 1,400 fps in a good barrel with no leading. In centerfire guns the velocity can go up to about 2,000 fps with bullets alloyed with tin and equipped with a gas check on the base to prevent gas cutting. No .22 Long Rifle works at pressure and velocity remotely close to such levels.

I have fired tens of thousands of rounds of .22 Long Rifle ammo in practice and in competition with rifle and pistol without experiencing the leading described in the other posts on this thread. In fact, I fired the entire NCAA smallbore season in 1974 without cleaning the bore of my Anschutz 1411, which could put 10 rounds at 50 feet through one hole slightly larger than a single .22 bullet. Every round was match quality, which means not one round had a copper wash. There was no leading, not ever during the whole season. I just fired a weekly 60-shot pistol match with my High Standard Victor. Once again, I did not clean the bore all season. There was no leading. In the last match this week, I fired a 92 and a 94 in 50-yard slow fire. When I held an X, I got an X, so the Victor is shooting as well now as it did when the season began in April.

Please don't lecture me about proper gun care. I don't clean the bore because .22 Long Rifle bullets don't leave copper behind in the bore, so there's no danger of corrosion caused by dissimilar metals, which is the biggest cause of pitting in centerfire rifles and handguns. No danger of that with lead and steel even if the lead did manage to plate the bore in some mysterious fashion. The priming in .22 ammo has been reliably noncorrosive for more than 60 years. My guns have good storage away from moisture and humidity.

Cleaning the bore changes the zero slightly until a few shots have been fired, so I leave the bore uncleaned because I cannot fire fouling shots in match competition. Now that the season is over, the bore will be cleaned.

Bottom line: If your bore is in good condition, you should be able to shoot any decent .22 ammo without leading. If you plan to shoot again soon, it's not a tragedy if you don't clean the bore, but if it will be awhile, I would run a couple of patches through.

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Kop r Klad copper clad welding clamp TIG stick MIG hold down wespo set
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Grade G 10 FR4 Copper Clad Garolite 062 16mm 6x6 Dual Sided
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Brand New Mg Chemicals Single Sided Copper Clad Board 6 X 9 Inches 1 16 Inch
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KAPTON FILM COPPER CLAD 002 x 12X24 1 OZ 2 Sides KAPTONCC002121O2S 19
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ARCAIR Copper clad pointed electrodes TYPE D C size 1 4 x 12 Cat no22
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KAPTON FILM COPPER CLAD 001x20x48 2 OZ 1 SIDE POLYIMIDE KAPTONCC00120 2 1 C 35
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