Rigel Continues to Use Carbon Steel for Brush Cores
Los Angeles, CA — Rigel Products continues to use carbon steel for the core wires that are twisted to form the stems of bore brushes. The judgement is made as a tradeoff between hardness and failure. While carbon steel is harder than brass, it is less likely to fail. Carbon steel wire is less likely to loosen its grip on bristles leaving an exposed core and to bend out of shape leaving a crooked brush.
When a core begins to fail, it should not be used in a bore, no matter what kind of metal is used for it. For example, in the rare instance that bristles begin falling out, a user should discard the brush. When bristles begin to fall out, there is a cascade as more bristles adjacent fall out, and the cascade is due to the fact that bristles depend on neighboring bristles for support. After cascading, a section of a core no longer has bristles between core and bore, it means a core may contact the bore wall.
The fact that carbon steel wire is harder than brass wire means that twisted carbon steel wire is less likely to slightly separate due to stress forces when being pushed down a bore. The upshot is that carbon steel wire is less likely to loosen its grip on bristles.
As another example, if a core begins to bend, consider throwing the brush away since it may bend worse when inside the bore. A bending core can smash the bristles, allowing the core to contact the bore. Brass wire being not as hard means a brass core is more likely to bend than a carbon steel core, and that is a disadvantage to brass
Brass has the advantage of being softer than carbon steel, and it makes some users feel more comfortable to use brass just in case the core contacts rifling by mistake.
Customer choice varies, and it seems that an overwhelming number of customers still prefer carbon steel wire cores. While one custom gun maker may insist on using brass wire cores since they are softer than carbon steel ones, a barrel manufacture or a military buyer may not prefer brass wire cores since they bend out of shape too easily. What is worse: a brass wire core that is softer and more likely to bend and contact the bore and leave the user in the field without a brush or with damaged rifling, or a steel wire core that is harder but less likely to bend out of shape in the first place ?
Customers should use caution with bore brushes. We recommend users pay attention to the state of the brush to make certain that the wire core is not beginning to bend. Also, users should make certain bristles remain strong enough to prevent the core from contacting the rifling. Because core wires are large diameter, averaging about 0.16 cm for rifle/pistol brushes, it would be risky to push not only carbon steel but also brass against rifling.
Shane Smith +1 310-463-7811 (mobile) RigelProducts@yahoo.com