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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 15-22 has maybe 3000 tounds thru it, mostly CCI SV, but also a few hundred Remington golden bulk. Never a problem. I tend to clean every 4-500 rounds. Never worried leading. I thought 22 weren’t prone to leading due to lower velocity. Anyway I recently loaded up on Sellier and Bellot 40 gr ammo and suddenly had bad leading problem after a maybe 300 rounds of the S&B. The ammo was really greasy. So I wiped down all the rounds to get rid of the grease. I no longer have the boxes so I don’t know the MV.

I can’t see how a barrel would prone to leading. Its got to be the ammo. Or am I missing something? BTW I was able to clean the lead and my boroscope shows the barrel to be in excellent condition.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I boroscoped all my other 22 barrels. All are clean and in good shape. But none have seen the S&B ammo. I checked my other lead bullets and none have any lube that I can detect. I'll set aside the S&B and chalk this experience up to education.
 

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I have a Remington Model 550-I (tube mag, semi-auto) that was my Grandpa's. He bought it new in 1950, and fired untold rounds through it. Then, while my brother and I were growing up, we frequently shot bricks and bricks of Remington Thunderbolt and Federal Lightning, not to mention many a box of Winchester Wildcat and CCI Stinger.

I only ever periodically cleaned the bore, with nothing but a quick swipe of Hoppe's No. 9, followed by a couple of dry patches and an oiled patch to finish. A few years ago, I decided to completely disassemble the old gal and have her reblued. I figured that after half a zillion rounds of unjacketed lead bullets, the bore was probably totally caked with lead fouling and needed more thorough TLC than I'd given it over the past 40 years. So, while it was down I thought I'd give 'er a good long soak with Hoppe's, then scrub it to death with a bronze brush to scrape out said horrific lead fouling. Except, when I did, there was virtually zero lead fouling present.....

No doubt about it, this gun is the ultimate "high mileage" .22 rifle, and was never really cared for in the manner it deserved. Yet, the bore is absolutely pristine and was clean as a whistle. I could definitely be mistaken, but I think all Sellier and Bellot .22 ammo has graphite coated bullets. If yours does, one would think that even without the grease the graphite alone would prevent lead fouling. UNLESS, the graphite simply isn't as effective at preventing lead depositing as the old fashioned wax used on the ammo mentioned above, all of which have dead soft lead bullets that should have otherwise quickly fouled a bore. So, maybe it's the S&B's graphite coating?
 

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Many target .22 LR standard velocity target loads seem to be heavily lubricated. This is particularly true of European brands.
I got some Eley 40 gr std. velocity from CMP for an event last Spring. I ran about 1000 rounds between practice and comp. I don’t know what coating they use, but I had no leading.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Took the gun to the range after deleading and cleaning. I shot 25 rounds Browning BPR (copper plated 1435 fps) and sighted in at 25 yards with my Sight Mark red dot ($100 works great!). Then 50 rounds Winchester Super X (copper plated 1280 fps). All shots within a 1 inch circle at 25 yards (good shooting for me). When I got home I cleaned the gun and boroscoped. Bore appears pristine, no evidence of any fouling. Lesson learned.
 

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I recently loaded up on Sellier and Bellot 40 gr ammo and suddenly had bad leading problem after a maybe 300 rounds of the S&B.
What's that mean, "had bad leading problem"?

Did the gun's accuracy go away? Or did the bore just look like it was full of lead?

Is it possible that the lube (not lead) from the S&B ammo was building up?

FWIW, I've see the .22lr guys who shoot bug holes fire 5-10 "fouling" rounds when switching ammo to "lube" the barrel thorougly with the new ammo's lube...
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The accuracy went away, far away. I doubt it was the lube building up. Upon examination of the gun I could not get a 22 brush or just the rod down the bore, despite my best efforts. My 22 borescope wouldn't go down. I had to use my 17 rod and a brush wrapped in chore boy to get enough lead out so I could then switch to 22 brush and chore boy. I've had it to the range twice and it is holding zero. After last range trip borescope showed no evidence of fouling.
 

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Did you wipe off the "grease" before or after you discovered the leading?

I wonder whether wiping off the lube caused the leading... Most .22lr ammo is lubed, and as I understand it, the bullet "skates" on the lube, which prevents leading.
 

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My 15-22 has maybe 3000 tounds thru it, mostly CCI SV, but also a few hundred Remington golden bulk. Never a problem. I tend to clean every 4-500 rounds. Never worried leading. I thought 22 weren’t prone to leading due to lower velocity. Anyway I recently loaded up on Sellier and Bellot 40 gr ammo and suddenly had bad leading problem after a maybe 300 rounds of the S&B. The ammo was really greasy. So I wiped down all the rounds to get rid of the grease. I no longer have the boxes so I don’t know the MV.

I can’t see how a barrel would prone to leading. Its got to be the ammo. Or am I missing something? BTW I was able to clean the lead and my boroscope shows the barrel to be in excellent condition.
That grease is what keeps the leading down. :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Did you wipe off the "grease" before or after you discovered the leading?

I wonder whether wiping off the lube caused the leading... Most .22lr ammo is lubed, and as I understand it, the bullet "skates" on the lube, which prevents leading.
I wiped the S&B rounds after shooting a box. They were really greasy, to the point I was concerned about messing up the mags. The 15-22 mags are a pain to clean, and grease/oil attract dirt especially in the desert. My CCI SV and Norma Match are very lightly greased, neither to the point I'd be concerned about messing up the mags. And I have shot thousands of rounds of both. My Thunderbolts (the round some folks love to hate ....) appear to have a hard coat, maybe MoS2. I have yet to have any leading in my other 22 rifles or pistols (I've borescoped all of them). Only my 15-22 saw the S&B.

I load a lot of lead (45 ACP, 45 Colt, 44 SPL and 38 SPL). I did have leading problems with the 44, but once I figured out the hardness that problem disappeared. The others I buy coated (MoS2 or Hi-Tek). Can't recall any leading problems with those either, rifle, revolver or pistol. I also load 9 mm but only jacketed. No problems.

As I mentioned above, lesson learned.
 
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