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The nickel-plated Colt New Service I bought at a Texas auction on-line came in and when I went to pick up the gun neither the FFL dealer store clerks, nor I, could get the cylinder latch to move to open the cylinder. When I got home, I pushed on it and pushed and it grudgingly opened. I assume it just had not been moved in eons, since Christ was a corporal, and had just frozen in position. Possibly there some gunk clogging it up in there.

Normally, I'd give it a shot of WD-40, then escalate to Break Free, if that didn't work, but I seem to remember hearing that Hoppes No. 9 destroys nickel finishes, so what about other lubricants/cleaners? What is safe on nickel?
 

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Look for something that doesn't have ammonia in it. Hoppe's does make one but it's not their longtime standard gun cleaner.

Probably the best penetrating oil is Kroil.
 

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I've used Hoppes #9 for years on nickel finished colt's and never had a problem but I do not soak them in it. Just clean and wipe it out with a dry patch. For your sticky cylinder release I would spray it breakfree clp then wipe off the excess. Never use WD40 on your firearm. After cleaning just wipe it down with a silicone cloth.
 

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I agree, use CLP. There is probably some old, hardened grease in there, and the CLP will soften it up. Not as good as Hoppes, but I wouldn't use that. If you leave some CLP in the interior, it won't hurt anything, and metal on metal parts need some oil to prevent wear.
 
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