Shotgun chambers need a smooth, polished finish so that spent shells eject properly. The bore’s surface may look shiny, but there’s more to chamber honing than the mirror-like finish that meets the eye.
For best results, a shotgun chamber needs a plateau finish with a uniform series of peaks and oil-retaining valleys. This substantially smooth surface finish reduces friction and fouling while promoting optimum lubrication.
Some gun owners have heard of plateau finishing, but the phrase “slicking up” might be better-known. In Slicking up the Stoeger S x S Shotgun Part III, an on-line article about shotgun chamber honing, the owner of a Stoeger Silverado Coach Gun described the power of plateau finishing with Flex-Hone® for Firearms tools. “Those shells will easily come out of the chambers now,” the gunsmith explained.
Flex-Hone® for Firearms Tools
Flex-Hone® for Firearms tools from Brush Research Manufacturing (BRM) produce a plateau finish in chambers, cylinders, magazine tubes, slides, and smooth bore barrels. These Made in the USA gun tools are available for shotguns, revolvers and pistols, rifles, and even paintball guns. For shotguns, BRM supplies shotgun barrel hones, shotgun forcing cones, and chamber hones.
BRM’s flexible cylinder hones don’t just improve the look of firearms cylinders. They impart a surface finish that resists corrosion and wear while reducing fouling. Importantly, Flex-Hone® for Firearms tools also keeps the bores of your guns at the precise dimensions required. Unlike reamers or rigid hones, BRM’s gun tools aren’t designed for heavy-duty material removal. They’re easy-to-use, too.
Shotgun Chamber Hones
As the author of Slicking up the Stoeger S x S Shotgun Part III explained, BRM’s shotgun chamber hones can be used with a handheld electric drill. The stem wire on these gun tools is covered with a coating to protect the barrel from scratching. The abrasive comes in 800-grit aluminum oxide (AO) or 400-grit silicon carbide (SC). Chamber hones are available for different gauges and bore sizes.
AO chamber hones are used for finer finishing, polishing, and cleaning. SC chamber hones are effective for removing tool marks, oxidation, and corrosion. We’re not sure which type of tool the gunsmith started with, but his article mentions “initial chamber honing” followed by a “switch” to another “Flex-Hone chamber hone” for polishing. Given this information, he may have used an SC tool and then an AO tool.
Best Practices for Chamber Honing
When significant surface improvement is required, BRM recommends starting with a coarser grit tool followed by a finer-grit tool. Always use a lubricant, preferably BRM Flex-Hone® oil. Rotate the tool prior to entry and continue rotating until the tool is fully removed from the part. For additional best practices and ordering information, get the Flex-Hone for Firearms brochure.