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I am an old time black powder shooter and know that sperm oil has been used since day one on firearms. However, I was surprised to find it specified for oiling the M1 Garand per FM 23-5. I had assumed (I know, rump-u-me!) that natural sperm oil would have been replaced by synthetics far earlier than WWII. Today it is either illegal or so expensive they are selling synthetic sperm oil!

 

Anyhow, comments on this anachronism - or my perception of sperm oil as such?

 

Tom think.gif


Learn to ride hard, shoot straight, dance well and so live that you can, if necessary, look any man in the eye and tell him to go to Hell! US Cavalry Manual, 1923

WWII APS

 

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**PLEASE NOTE: THIS COMMUNITY MEMBER HAS SADLY PASSED AWAY**

 

 

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I am an old time black powder shooter and know that sperm oil has been used since day one on firearms. However, I was surprised to find it specified for oiling the M1 Garand per FM 23-5. I had assumed (I know, rump-u-me!) that natural sperm oil would have been replaced by synthetics far earlier than WWII. Today it is either illegal or so expensive they are selling synthetic sperm oil!

 

Anyhow, comments on this anachronism - or my perception of sperm oil as such?

 

Tom think.gif

 

Sperm Oil was used extenisvely in aircraft engines during WW2 as well. It seems it has unique high temperature viscosity properties.

 

Before it became bad to kill buddy-whale to get his oil, and the price skyrocketed, there was no need to come up with a synthetic. Kinda like gasoline. As long as it is cheap, no one will bother to figure out a substitute.

 

Cheers


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I had no idea that a natural product like this was used on the Garand until I read this thread....very interesting stuff. I do know that grease is considered to be the proper lubricant vice modern products like CLP. Thanks for bringing this to light and teaching me something.

 

Jeremiah


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Actively seeking WW1 4th and 5th Brigade USMC helmets and also a named WW2 Raider green blouse.
I'd rather be a sparrow than a snail, if I could I surely would....

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About 40 years ago I bought an US book about sporterizing GI rifles and carbines. There are pictured horrible guns ruined by means of extensive use of buffing wheels, chrome lining fancy stocks and so on. I remember that it was the first time I heard the word sperm oil. The author recommended to use only sperm oil in thin coat on bolt and other moving parts cause it it's the one which doesn't freeze at extreme low temperatures.


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Sperm Oil was used extenisvely in aircraft engines during WW2 as well. It seems it has unique high temperature viscosity properties.

 

Before it became bad to kill buddy-whale to get his oil, and the price skyrocketed, there was no need to come up with a synthetic. Kinda like gasoline. As long as it is cheap, no one will bother to figure out a substitute.

 

Cheers

 

Did a little research today. I found out the Endangered Species Act is the reason there is no more sperm oil available in this country and what is here is stockpiled by the government for use in an emergency(?). I also learned that oil from the jojoba plant is, and has been, a substitute for sperm oil even back to before WWII. Here is one quote...

 

"Experimental plantings were established at the Boyce Thompson Southwestern Arboretum in Superior Arizona in 1925, and Jojoba oil was used during WW II in motors and transmissions for military equipment. After the war ended, petroleum became plentiful, and Jojoba oil use declined. Jojoba is the only plant known to produce this oil, composed of fatty alcohols and fatty acids instead of glycerol and fatty acids like most oils."

 

So, if you want to be a traditionalist, you can always obtain jojoba oil to lube your beloved Garand. Me? I guess I'll stick with good, old Break Free!

 

Tom thumbsup.gif


Learn to ride hard, shoot straight, dance well and so live that you can, if necessary, look any man in the eye and tell him to go to Hell! US Cavalry Manual, 1923

WWII APS

 

donation2007.gifdonation2008.gif

donation2009.gifdonation2011.gif

**PLEASE NOTE: THIS COMMUNITY MEMBER HAS SADLY PASSED AWAY**

 

 

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