Semi Auto and Cold Weather

Semi Auto and Cold Weather

This is a discussion on Semi Auto and Cold Weather within the Defensive Carry Holsters & Carry Options forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Are there any functionality issues with a semi auto and cold weather. More specifically, if my legally carried gun was secured in a lock box ...

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Thread: Semi Auto and Cold Weather

  1. #1
    Senior Member Array Hivoltage's Avatar
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    Semi Auto and Cold Weather

    Are there any functionality issues with a semi auto and cold weather. More specifically, if my legally carried gun was secured in a lock box in the car all day due to going to the courthouse for jury duty, and it is 5 degrees outside.....will it still go bang every time the trigger is pulled? Just curious, I would like to know what to expect. Thanks
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    Member Array Holster's Avatar
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    It will be fine. It will be cold when you put it back on, but the gun will be fine.
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    flh
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    Unless there was something wrong with it before it was put in the box , it will perform as needed ,
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    Senior Member Array halem1's Avatar
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    Mechanically it should. I would have to wonder about the type of lubricant used on the firearm though. Some of the lighter weight ones could be prone to freezing into a sludge causing issues. Read the label on the product to see if there are temperature indications.
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    Semi Auto and Cold Weather

    Iíve been wanting to test this recently as weíve had lows of -15 and a few days when we never went positive. I want to leave a handgun and ammo in the cold overnight and see if it would function the next day without it being brought back up in temp.

    Free time has been tight lately, however, and my motivation to go to the range when itís below zero is fairly low.


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    Last edited by yooper71; December 28th, 2017 at 01:37 PM. Reason: Fixed a spelling error
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    VIP Member Array Chuck R.'s Avatar
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    Define "cold weather".

    I've seen semi-s have issues in cold weather when they've been over-lubed, or lubed with grease. A couple years ago during a late pheasant hunt (no chit -12 wind chill) I watched a friends semi turn into a single shot, and one of the guys O/Us wouldn't fire the upper barrel. That's the 1st time ever I've seen it cold enough to effect an O/U. I've seen semis have issues during snow goose hunts and a friend of mine once had his bolt action fail to release the firing pin because the excessive lube turned to sludge in the cold. When I went through cold weather training (Army) we were told to go sparingly on the lube when temps were low. When I'm out in the sub zero stuff I make it a point to rack the bolt periodically to make sure it's free. Seems to help.

    Chuck
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    VIP Member Array Nmuskier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by halem1 View Post
    Mechanically it should. I would have to wonder about the type of lubricant used on the firearm though. Some of the lighter weight ones could be prone to freezing into a sludge causing issues. Read the label on the product to see if there are temperature indications.
    This opposes conventional thinking. Lubricant becomes more viscous as it cools. Light weight oil goes in cars in cold weather. DoD replaces CLP with LSA in cold weather.

    @Chuck R. I use 0 weight, aluminum base grease (sparingly) on the frame rails and under the bold, or on rifle bolt lugs. I've used my AR, 1911, and CZ 75 in single digits with no failures. It stays grease like, and doesn't thicken.
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    VIP Member Array LimaCharlie's Avatar
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    Keep one in the chamber and it will warm up with the first shot.
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    Member Array oldfashioned's Avatar
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    Not to worry; bad guys notoriously hate cold weather and aren't going outside.

    I'm only kinda kidding about this. It gets below about 80 degrees down here and the hoodies come out.

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    Shooters Choice FP-10 is good stuff in the cold weather. I read a test where this worked better than the others to -50. Maybe on barfcom, canít find the link now.

    Personally I have only been dumb enough to test it at -10F with 35mph winds. Canít even comprehend what the windchill was. My AR functioned fine, and I normally run it on the wet side. And I was out in it for two days straight.

    The range I belong to is out door only. I have never had an issue with my semi autos down to 10F. I use TW-25 grease on the rails and FP-10 on the rest.

    I also learned that I will never shoot my 44 with frozen hands ever again.
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    VIP Member Array maxwell97's Avatar
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    Here's an interesting video. Looks like, depending on the lube, a gun can run much colder than that. I'm not sure what the compositions are, but I would guess that a teflon-based lubricant would do better than petroleum.

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    VIP Member Array Hoganbeg's Avatar
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    Slightly off-topic but related issue would be taking a cold gun into an warm/moist environment (next to your body) can cause condensation on the cold surfaces until it warms up completely.

    As for the lubrication, look for a lube that specifically states it is good for your desired temperature range. They are out there.
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    DG
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    I'm wondering if you could just put a pack of Hot Hands in the lockbox to keep things warm.

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    Ex Member Array CG11's Avatar
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    My dad always hunted with a Browning Semi-auto 12 gauge in the hills of Wv, at times below zero. It never failed to go bang. Neither did my 20 Gauge Winchester.
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