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  Tetra gun grease
« on: April 22, 2008, 00:09:29 AM » by RB
The following information is not the result of any even remotely "scientific" test.

I will only state my very surprising experience with using Tetra Gun Grease, and you are also free to conclude that what I am saying must be utter nonsense - I will not draw any conclusions at all and leave them to you.

Background - I have NEVER had a gun go rusty on me. Well, NEVER without good reason - such as leaving a Pyrodex-laden black powder revolver dirty for just 24 hours, or leaving the matt blued or phosphated (not quite sure which it is) cocking lever on my Diana 54 totally dry for a number of weeks in the totally wrong assumption that the surface treatment was in any way protection against corrosion.

Down to business-

I purchased a pre-owned pistol. With this, the owner also gave me a small tube of Tetra Gun Grease.

I did re-lube this (mostly stainless steel) pistol with the grease, and I also thought it would be a good idea to dab some on the back of my CZ-453 rifle's bolt, i.e. at the rear of the striker.

Some time passed, and in the interim I also applied some of this Tetra Gun Grease to the internal cylinder of my Diana 54 air rifle - externally of course.

Anyway... one fine day not to long afterwards, I pick up my CZ and note that the back of the bolt, still greased, but now the grease is assuming a brown custard like colour!

Horrified quite, I assumed that my cleaning was not up to scratch, and anyway, I re-applied fresh grease.

Shortly afterwards I used my Diana 54, and, well, failing to make any connection, did happen to notice that the generally greyish/dirty-greased breech area was turning ever so slightly brownish. Since this area tends to become fouled with lube I just gave it a wipe, and re-applied the Tetra gun grease.

Also at some point in time, I thought it would be a great idea to apply this grease to my CZ 75 pistol, to the slide rails, and to the barrel, especially around the locking lugs where grease is an ideal high pressure lube.

That was then. Now is two days ago. I happened to take my CZ 75 pistol out of its box, and was shocked to note that the still-greased polished barrel, at the very least where I could see it out of the cutout in the slide, had plenty of brown specks on it! The exposed forward ends of the slide rails, were also greased, and brown.

At this point my thoughts were travelling in two different directions. One, something was seriously wrong with this grease. Two, or something was seriously wrong with CZ steel, having at that moment recalled the previous incident with my 453.

The latter theory had it's 5 minutes of fame when I grabbed my 453, and, lo and behold, again the grease at the rear of the bolt was slightly browning.

But then I also remembered that I had used this grease on several other guns I own. I again looked at the Diana's cylinder, and it was greased, and speckled!

I then picked up an over and under I had recently lubed and greased, and was absolutely petrified to find that many of the greased areas, in the action and also where the action contacted the barrel monoblock, and the area around the extractors, were rusting! Not only, but if ever damnation was needed, where the action's opening and closing resulted in a buildup of excess grease, the rusting was far more serious! More grease, equals more rust!

In a panic of sorts I went through all the guns that I could have or might have used the grease on, and thankfully the only other was my TX 200 air rifle, but having been lubed only very recently, only exceedinly minor speckling was evident. Needless to say, a very thorough grease removal process from all affected guns was initiated, using water displacing spray and Solv-it gun oil aerosol, a product that I have used for many years and which has protected my guns excellently often with them not having been re-wiped for extended periods, possibly also measured in years.

Attached find photos of my o/u shotgun, my Diana's cylinder, and also my TX's cylinder. The other guns I cleaned up immediately, far before the thought even crossed my mind to take photos.

As I started off by stating - it's now over to you to come to your own conclusions. No further comment necessary on my part.


The Bright Side: "Sir! We're surrounded!" - "Excellent! We can shoot in any direction!"

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #1 on: April 22, 2008, 06:50:13 AM » by Quantumshot
This is weird.  I would contact Tetra if I where you and refer to them this horrific scenario.
All faults point to the grease itself and not a coincidence.

Better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2008, 09:45:57 AM » by RB
Fact is that even though I can see with my own eyes, I am still incredulous. I mean, a product that is designed to lube and protect, actually CAUSING corrosion? Tetra are not some back-yard operation and they have been selling their products for a number of years.

Maybe these greases are no good at keeping moisture away from the metal, or even worse, hygroscopic (attracting moisture from the air, as does salt)? Maybe with our high relative humidity, this becomes an issue?

I do not know, but trying to find some info about the issue on the Internet, I find hundreds of positive reviews, and I only found one negative, which was simply a reference to an article comparing gun lubes on/in Gun Tests, which in turn I could not trawl up: - see the first post (Tetra only mentioned in passing).




The Bright Side: "Sir! We're surrounded!" - "Excellent! We can shoot in any direction!"

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #3 on: April 22, 2008, 12:18:34 PM » by Sturmgewehr
Take a look here for the performance of various lubs :
I am not an expert on this matter,but isn't it suppose to be oil for rust protection and grease for lubrication ?
A possible theory for what happened there Ron. .is that you covered your own fingerprints with grease and effectively sealed moisture
below the grease which then formed rust.To tell you the thruth it is a bit far fetched ,so don't get your gun out of your holster yet . now cowboy. Grin
I myself use good gun oil  applied with brush,say once every 20 days.I must also say that my stgw came with grease in its cleaning kit
and I had to clean the grease out of the gun as it had turned brownish.A Swiss ex army guy told me that thats what happens when
the grease gets old and you had to wipe it and changed it periodically.

« Last Edit: April 22, 2008, 13:38:16 PM by Sturmgewehr »

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #4 on: April 22, 2008, 12:37:48 PM » by RB
Further comments in response:

Prior to the application of grease, the part would not have been totally dry but would have had at least some regular gun oil on it. Also, the grease was smeared on in SOME places, but it was also directly applied from the tube (it has a small nozzle) in many others where a) smearing is not necessary and b) where fingers could not reach anyway, such as around and below the ejectors on the o/u. Rust did appear on the o/u for the first time ever, on the underside where the trigger group tightly fits the action, in the ordinarily totally imperceptible micro-gap between the TG and the action. This gap, possibly a fraction of a tenth of a millimeter wide, turned brown and became highly visible. It seems that the grease or some of it's lighter fractions crept into this gap. No question of fingerprints there, I think the only fingers that ever went there belonged to the guy who built the gun...

My concern is not so much that the grease may not have been so good at preventing corrosion, but that it seemed to very actively PROMOTE corrosion.

Thing is, where would you use it, in the knowledge that wherever you lubed would rust?


The Bright Side: "Sir! We're surrounded!" - "Excellent! We can shoot in any direction!"

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2008, 12:57:48 PM » by RB
I did visit that link but while the test was interesting, I think that it was more a test of how well the products tested actually adhered to the steel plate samples - how "shower proof" they were.

This because the writer actually states that it rained heavily (thunderstorm) while the plates under test were outside on the picnic table.

Hence obviously products like the Boeing stuff ("hard to remove when dry") performed excellently, as did WD40 which worked differently and shrugged off the rain.

I guess so would paint, under the circumstances.

Other than that I do not think that the test proved anything, because I do not think that we (or many others) will be leaving our guns out in the rain all too often...

...or rather what that test did certainly prove, is that one has to be extremely critical of "tests" and their methodology before accepting the results as fact.


The Bright Side: "Sir! We're surrounded!" - "Excellent! We can shoot in any direction!"

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #6 on: April 22, 2008, 13:45:38 PM » by Sturmgewehr
Ron, all you said points to one thing... the stuff is hydroscopic,or maybe the batch you bought is.
As I told you ,I am no expert,so mine was as I told you a far fetched theory.
Keep us informed of the outcome.


  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #7 on: April 23, 2008, 13:52:32 PM » by K38

« Last Edit: December 07, 2013, 11:32:59 AM by K38 »

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2008, 14:01:11 PM » by RB
Yes K38 in fact I did read the "buff it off for a shine..." or something of the sort. In fact for a moment I thought it was mandatory, and that hence I was using the product completely wrongly, but it is only worded ambiguously and what they really mean to say is the above, plus "if you want to".

I came to this conclusion because on the tube it only says "remove excess" which is pretty logical and in their cleaning tutorials where they recommend it's use I'm not sure they even say that.

Thing is, I got rust even where there was only a thin film so the too much too little thing really isn't significant.

I have now placed my bets on Napier's... or else I will say sod it and go back to gun oil plain and simple, again no rust ever before!!

Thanks for the input


The Bright Side: "Sir! We're surrounded!" - "Excellent! We can shoot in any direction!"

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #9 on: April 23, 2008, 14:31:17 PM » by K38

« Last Edit: December 07, 2013, 11:33:14 AM by K38 »

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #10 on: April 23, 2008, 14:40:07 PM » by RB
It's white, but not opaque enough to stay white when spread thinly, but for all I know it could also have lost it's opacity even more once applied.

Third pic is your best bet.


The Bright Side: "Sir! We're surrounded!" - "Excellent! We can shoot in any direction!"

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #11 on: April 23, 2008, 14:58:06 PM » by K38

« Last Edit: December 07, 2013, 11:34:05 AM by K38 »

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2008, 08:12:38 AM » by dvd
In my 25 odd years of caring for my pieces, never had one go rusty on me.
I steer clear of seductive names and claims.
I use good quality motor oil and wipe all exposed metal surfaces with it and add a drop of it to sliding surfaces and high load friction areas.
The only place I dont use it is on my air gun piston because it migrates so easily to the front with unwanted effects.
In short, the higher the clinging effect an oil has to metal, the better it will work to form an oxygen barrier on the metal.
If it can lubricate hot high speed engine parts, it should be well up to the job on anything we use really.

While we're on the subject of rust, another forgotten area where rust builds up is between woodwork and metal.
I like to insert a thin shim of plastic in between. This stops the wood from sucking up the oil film and rust is kept away.


« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2008, 17:10:40 PM » by RB
Well, here's one that got away - I forgot that I had applied this to my Ruger 10/22.

Pics showing the underside of the bolt, and also hammer and disconnector.

No need for comment but spent the best part of an hour taking the Ruger to bits, cleaning properly to remove all traces of the Tetra grease, and re-assembling  / re-lubing with Napier gun grease which I am happy to say does NOT give the same "results" as Tetra.


The Bright Side: "Sir! We're surrounded!" - "Excellent! We can shoot in any direction!"

  Re: Tetra gun grease
« Reply #14 on: July 04, 2008, 19:23:57 PM » by BLACK EAGLE
For me Solv It Gun Oil is one of the best. It is a lubricant and a very efective corrosion inhibiter. I've been using it from the first time it appeared on the market. Before it remember using
Franchi HF gun oil is exelent to. This two gun oils have a very long term protection.

By the way I never used any greases on shot guns till the past 25 years and they are still sound. On semi auto's in hunting season for lubrication just a llittel spray on moving parts once weekly i'ts only nesesary. (now once a year !!!!!!)

For clay shooting the same thing for semi auto and OU but !!! every time you go to shoot and after cleaning i leave them upside down without forend in the gun safe.

Grease and thick oil's I think attracts dirt from powder residue and dust from the atmospher.

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