How to Remove Rust from a Gun Without Damaging Bluing

Maybe you put your gun up with some water on it you didn’t see or inherited a classic with a bit of rust. If it’s just a speck of rust, calling a gunsmith isn’t practical, is it? But we also don’t want to ruin our weapon by doing it ourselves and using the wrong gun supplies and/or methods. That’s what this article is for! We’ll show you the safest method on how to remove rust from a gun without damaging bluing.

What is Gun Bluing?

Gun bluing is the black oxide finish that coats our guns’ metal parts as protection against rust. This coating’s color usually varies from very dark blue to black, hence its name.

When should you use an abrasive?

Once rust has corroded the finish or the metal of the gun, there’s nothing you can do to restore that particular material. But, you can prevent it from spreading further by keeping the gun oiled well and free of moisture when you store it. As long as the rust is superficial and not deep, try using gun oil and rubbing it into the location to remove the brown stain and protect the metal.

Then, wipe away the excess oil and evaluate the look of the gun.If the rust is barely noticeable, you may want to leave the gun as-is. After all, doing any polishing will remove more material and may be hard to localize just to a small area.

If you think you can improve it, keep on reading for our recommended method.

How to Remove Rust from a Gun Without Damaging Bluing?

gun barrel with rust
Before treatment

You’ll need:

  • Gun Oil or Lubricant
  • Steel Wool or Copper Scrubber
  • A piece of rag


  1. Disassemble your gun.
  2. Apply gun oil or lubricant on rusty gun parts. Let it sit for 15 minutes.
  3. Scrub the rest with the steel wool or copper scrubber gently. 
  4. Wipe the area after a while to check how much rust is left on the surface.
After polishing with oil

That’s really as simple as it is. In most cases, less is more and preventing any future spread of rust and reducing the impact of what is there is the best-case scenario.

If you accidentally remove too much of the original finish in the process, you can use this bluing touch-up kit to restore the look of the original finish.

Presto Pen and Presto Mag Liquid Gun Blue for Bluing Gun Plus 5 Free...
  • PRESTO MAG BOTTLE - One 3oz bottle of cold blue formulation that gives a rich deep blue luster to your firearm.
  • One Presto Pen for an easy touch-up method
  • Comes with 2 Westlake Market disposable absorbent work pads.

How to Prevent Rust Formation

Rust formation and corrosion occur when your gun or a certain part of your gun has been exposed to oxygen or moisture while in storage or if it wasn’t cleaned or lubricated properly after being left alone for a long time.

  • Clean your gun regularly.
  • If you’re looking to store your gun long-term, keeping them in an airtight safe or container is the best way to go. 
  • Use silica gel packets as a preventive measure. Silica gel packets are great atabsorbing moisture. 
  • Deep clean (and lubricate) your gun if you’ll be leaving it in storage for a long time.

These factors should also be considered when storing ammunition as they can greatly affect your ammo’s quality as well.


Now your gun’s good as new! You can also use this chance to lubricate gun parts that have seized up due to rust or after being stored for a long time. And make a habit of cleaning your firearms regularly to avoid rust from forming again.

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Last update on 2024-05-22 / Images from Amazon Product API