May 21st, 2008

Sources for Ballistol Lube (and Mysteries Revealed)

Regular readers of the Daily Bulletin know we’ve recommended Ballistol as a near-ideal case lube for basic full-length sizing. It’s extremely slick, and goes on very thin when applied with the aerosol version. Unlike many other case lubes, you won’t need to use a solvent or tumble the brass afterwards to remove. All you need is a very thin layer of Ballistol, and this easily wipes off with a paper towel. (For case-forming and neck expansion, we recommend a thicker lube such as Imperial Die Wax or Mobil 1.)

Unfortunately, many folks have told us that they can’t find Ballistol at local shops, or they want to combine it with a reloading supply order to cut down on shipping costs. Here are sources for Ballistol, including Brownell’s and MidwayUSA. For convenience, we recommend the aerosol version, but the liquid version can be diluted and used also.

1.5 oz. Aerosol $4.43 982-000-001
6.0 oz. Aerosol $6.82 982-000-002

1.5 oz. Aerosol $3.99 727130
6.0 oz. Aerosol $6.49 831231


Ballistol USA
Two – 1.5oz. aerosols
Three – 6 oz. aerosols
$ 24.00 + 9.00 s&h = $ 33.00
Basic Aerosol Pack
Two – 1.5 oz. Aerosol Can
One – 6 oz. Aerosol Can
Total $20.95 incl. shipping

Aerosol 5-pak
One – 1.5 oz. Aerosol Can
Four – 6 oz. Aerosol Can
Total $39.95 incl. Shipping

Ballistol Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is the “Ballistol Lube” with the white label the same as the Ballistol “Sportsman’s Oil” with the green label.

A: Yes. Same product, just different labels. But remember there are both aerosol and liquid versions. The aerosol comes out very thin — like water. The liquid is thick — like motor oil.

Q: The liquid version is more economical by weight, but can I dilute it down?

A: Yes, Ballistol liquid can be diluted with water, up to a 10:1 ratio and it will remain slick. We recommend about a 6:1 ratio for use as a general case cleaner and lubricant — but you should experiment yourself.

Q: Will Ballistol get gummy over time, like other lubricants?

A: Nope. Here’s an interesting story. In 1952, a bottle with Ballistol, with the cap only loosely attached, was found in the attic of a deceased German hunter. The purchase receipt was found proving that the Ballistol had sitting for over 30 years. Yet, it still had the consistency of freshly produced Ballistol.

Q: If Ballistol oil can be diluted with water, does that mean it will promote corrosion?

A: No. Ballistol emulsifies in water. The resulting product will displace H20 like WD40, and then leaves a thin, protective oil. Ballistol is also mildly alkaline (pH between 8.5 and 9.5), so it neutralizes mild acidic residues such as hand sweat or residues from black powder (which are acidic).

Q: What’s Ballistol made from — it smells funny?

A: Ballistol is made from medical grade mineral oil, alkaline salts of oleic acid, several alcohols, Benzyl Acetate and oil from vegetable seeds. The smell comes from medicinal Anethole oil, which is derived from the Anise plant. Ballistol is biodegradable and non-toxic. CLICK HERE for the Material Data Safety Sheet

For more information on Ballistol, contact Ballistol USA, (800) 253 2460, (252) 261 0408 (fax).

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