Founded at the beginning of the 20th century, Hoppe’s is one of the oldest American companies engaged in gun cleaning. Its founder, Frank August Hoppe, worked in the paint industry for several years, five years in William Waterall’s company that pioneered in the paint and varnish sector, and then twenty years in the paint department of Achenbach & Miller, and was good with chemistry. Hoppe was also in service in the National Guard of Pennsylvania. The skills and knowledge of chemicals and rifles helped him create America’s most recognizable gun cleaning solution, Hoppe’s 9.
Hoppe’s 9 Solvent
Cleaning firearms was a laborious and time-consuming business at that time. The smokeless powder used in the cartridges for the Army’s M1903 Springfield bolt-action rifle was extremely corrosive and swiftly built up in the barrel. Soldiers had to use a solvent that required a specific preparation process. Besides, it had to remain in the barrel for two hours to fully clean the powder.
Frank began experimenting with the recipe in 1903 and got a solvent composed of nine chemicals. This is why the solvent’s name is Hoppes #9. The trademark for Nitro Power Solvent #9 was registered in 1907.
Frank’s product was a god’s gift and saved a lot of time formerly spent on solvent preparation and waiting for the effect. It was equally effective against smokeless and black powder as well as lead and metal fouling. The solvent also protected the bore after the cleaning.
Today, Vista Outdoor owns Hoppe’s. Hoppe’s vastly diversified into cleaners, oils, boresnakes for rifles, handguns, and shotguns, cleaning rods, workbenches, and tools. Gun owners are welcome to choose from a variety of Hoppe’s gun cleaners and oils prepared for diverse tasks. The range contains the Hoppe’s Traditional series, Hoppe’s Black for modern firearms with a high round count, the Hoppe’s Elite series of low-odor cleaners and oils for hunting, and Hoppe’s Gun Medic for malfunctioning guns.