When metal is subjected to air and moisture the process of corrosion begins. This progression is referred to as rusting. People often refer to the corrosion of all metal as rust, but technically rust only refers to the oxidation of steel or iron. The rust or corrosion of metal has an effect on the equipment we use for work, and the instruments we use to get away from work. From a rusty hammer, or rusting on the barrel on our gun, we detest rust and any effect it may have on our hunting gear. So how do we guard our guns and other equipment from rust and corrosion? With VCI you can help protect your hunting gear by not allowing the rust process to ever start.
Preventing rust and corrosion can be achieved an any number of different ways depending on the metal you are trying to protect. Some corrosion inhibitors are a coating, applied to Stop Rust metal to give it a layer of corrosion protection. Tools are sometimes covered with a clear coat to prevent rust. Unfortunately we can’t coat much of our hunting gear with any kind of paint or plastic coating.
What is VCI?
VCI is short for Volatile Corrosion Inhibitor and as the name suggests, corrosion inhibitors, prevent rust and corrosion. Sometimes when you buy new parts or tools they will be wrapped in a saturated plastic or coated craft paper. The chemical that is used to line the packaging is a different kind of rust and corrosion inhibitor. This chemical is called VCI. Due to its proven success with protecting metal from rust or corrosion it has been used industrially for more that 5 decades. VCI stops rust by bonding with the air and moisture surrounding the metal. As it bonds with the moisture in the air it prevents rust and corrosion from ever starting.
Why haven’t I heard of VCI before? Does it only come on plastic wrap or paper?
You probably haven’t heard of VCI because for many years it was limited to mostly industrial use and certain commercial applications due to its distribution method. It was only available for bulk purchase. This made it impractical for most consumers. That was all changed In 1997 with the development of the first aftermarket use of Volatile Corrosion Inhibitor with a convenient VCI emitter in the form of 10 gauge snap caps and 12 gauge snap caps that let you protect the inside of your shotgun barrel and your firing mechanisms from rust and corrosion. There are also VCI center fire snap plugs for rifles. Since then distribution methods for rust preventing VCI have grown vastly. It is now available oils, aerosol spray cans, and grease along with many other rust prevention products. You can get a gun cleaning microfiber wiping cloth to aid in wiping down your gun after use, as well as various corrosion protection systems to protect gun safes. Another new addition is a toolbox VCI emitter that protect tools and can be used in any small area to protect metal from rust and corrosion.