Good Gun Cleaning Info
I found some really good gun cleaning info on the Otis website. They sell cleaning gear, however I'm not trying to sell you on their stuff. I just haven't seen any info as detailed as what they provide so I thought I'd share it with everybody here. Happy reading.
Gun Cleaning Rules
1. ALWAYS CLEAN FROM BREECH TO MUZZLE IN THE NATURAL DIRECTION OF THE BULLET.
When you fire your gun, the powder residue and dirt are in the barrel. The chamber and receiver are clean. If you run a brush or patch from the muzzle end you will push this dirt, residue, and moisture into the chamber and receiver. This is a major cause of stuck cases or problems with lever actions and auto-loading rifles and shotguns. If you push or pull a brush back toward the chamber, you will notice the brush will throw the debris from the bore back into the chamber and locking lugs.
2. CENTER THE TIP AND ROD. BE CAREFUL NOT TO LET EITHER RUB THE BORE.
All firearms record their history. This is the reason most people look down the barrel of a firearm. An experienced eye can tell the method of cleaning, the number of shots, and the gun maintenance applied to the firearm. Many marks are caused by people who carelessly let the tip or rod rub the inside the barrel.
3. USE A CLEAN PATCH SURFACE EACH TIME YOU GO DOWN THE BARREL.
This is similar to mopping a floor and rinsing the mop out. When you are using your firearm you will get abrasive dirt in the muzzle. The patch with solvent will flush this dirt out in the shortest distance. If you use this patch surface again, the dirt will be deposited in the chamber and neck. The next bullet down the barrel picks up this dirt and erodes the throat. This is the exact equivalent of cleaning in the wrong direction.
4. NEVER RUN A BRUSH IN THE BARREL FIRST.
This will damage the firearm. The brush will pick up dirt, moisture or powder residue and deposit it into the chamber or receiver. Never dip a brush in solvent. The solvent at the brush core will collect dirt and drop it into the receiver and chamber.
5. NEVER GO BACK AND FORTH REVERSING THE BRUSH.
This will bend the bristles on the brush. This is the equivalent of bending a wire back and forth until it breaks. You will always ruin a brush if you reverse it while in the bore.
6. USE ONLY A FEW DROPS OF SOLVENT / LUBRICANT. Many people think the more solvent the better. However, this will damage the firearm. Use only the solvent that the patch will absorb. If you see too much, the solvent or oil will drip down into the trigger mechanism. This will cause a gummy trigger. If you use too much oil, it will drain back toward the stock and cause premature failure of the wood.
Next is the procedures.
Cleaning Procedure For All Firearms
It is very important to understand and develop a comfortable and rewarding gun cleaning program for your valuable firearms.
Many times people think that a collector firearm is your neighbor's engraved rifle or an expensive shotgun. This is very far from the real truth. A collector grade firearm is your dad's old shotgun or rifle; the one that he used when he taught you your first hunting or shooting skills. This firearm becomes more valuable as each day passes.
Those who do not clean and take care of their family heirlooms soon learn that they have nothing more than a wall hanger to pass on to their children. If you inherit your dad's or grandfather's rifle and have an excellent bore, hang onto it! Many people will want to buy your barrel or parts to repair their own rifles. Manufacturers no longer make many of these parts, and because they don't, they become more valuable every day.
So don't let the sun set on a dirty gun! You will pay a dear price for not maintaining your investment.
Some facts you may not be aware of:
Firearms are a better investment than money in the bank. When you sell a good firearm you will get a better return on your investment.
Firearms are the most stable commodity that you can invest in. Look at the ups and downs in the gold and metals markets. During economic chaos, he who has the guns has the gold! If you take care and clean correctly, your lever actions and auto loaders will outperform most single action firearms. This is especially true in 22 rim-fire semi-autos that are almost always cleaned incorrectly (muzzle to breech).
To clean, open the action as if you were going to insert a cartridge. Run the cleaning rod down the bore in the natural direction of the bullet. Pull the patch and the powder residue out of the barrel. It is this easy to clean any rifle in less than one minute. You can be assured that you are doing it properly to maintain the firearm.
When you clean, it is best to put an obstruction remover on one end of the rod this, facilitates cleaning and protects the threads of the rod. Using the proper size patch and the Otis method of attachment you can turn the rod in a clockwise direction in the receiver. The patch turns into a cone and cleans the entire circumference. Pull the turning patch into the chamber and clean the locking lugs. It is best to invest a few seconds cleaning the chamber. This will prevent stuck cases and guarantee you a second shot. As you continue to turn you will clean the most important areas of your rifle, the shoulder and the neck. This is shell space. If you keep this clean you will prolong the life of your firearm, and the bullet will leave the shell at a constant velocity. Continue to turn until the patch is in the bore. The solvent has been squeezed out of the patch and flows ahead of the patch and down the bore. This solvent will lubricate and remove powder residue or abrasive dirt that is in the bore. Continue to pull the rod out of the barrel in the natural direction of the bullet.
It is very important to note that you never run a brush down the barrel first. This will always damage the firearm. If you have dirt or moisture in the barrel, it will get into the bristle on the brush. The next time the brush is in the neck, it will deposit some of the dirt. This is the exact equivalent of cleaning in the wrong direction.
It is important that if you have any dirt in the bore that you do not run the same patch surface down the barrel again. If you do, the dirt that was picked up on the patch may scratch the lead to the throat. Take advantage of the six position patch and use a clean surface each time you pull the patch down the barrel.
It is important to put the patch on correctly to give the tightest possible patch. This allows the patch to mold itself to the inside configuration of the bore and scrub deep into the corners of the rifling.
Run successive patches down the barrel until the patch comes out clean. For long term storage, run a loose patch and let the oil stay in the bore.
If you are going to use the firearm, run a tight dry patch. Target shooters have learned that this tight dry patch will eliminate a fouling shot. Their first shot will be close to every succeeding shot. Many people need a fouling shot because they left solvent or oil in the barrel. This oil causes increased pressure behind the bullet, thus it goes in a slightly different position. As a hunter or military sniper, you will appreciate this as you do not have a fouling shot. Your first shot is usually your only and most important shot.
After you run the first patch down the barrel, you can now use a brush. Remember: Only run the brush from breech to muzzle. Otis produces short, heavy, brass bore brushes that can easily be inserted from the chamber to the muzzle. The brush of the proper size should always be used. You can consult the brush chart for a reference size. The Otis brushes are over sized. They clean the neck as you pull them down the barrel. It is recommended that when the brush is in the chamber that you turn the rod and brush in a clockwise direction. This will scrub the corner of the neck. This is important. If powder residue builds up in this corner, the case will pinch on the bullet and you will get random release times. Anyone who reloads knows this is the same problem if you do not trim the case length properly. The case will be too long for the neck and pinch the bullet.
It is recommended that you clean the rod and components with a used swab before putting them in the case
If you purchase a used firearm, pull one of the Otis brushes down the bore. The brush is so precise that any bore wear or rusty spots can be felt in the rod. The most important rust problem you will pick up is near the muzzle. Many rifles have rust deep in the corners of the rifling. This is caused by a rifle that had rain or moisture in the muzzle. Most people do not clean this moisture out of the bore. In a matter of hours, the raw fired barrel will start to rust. You can prevent this condition by always having your cleaning equipment with you in the field where you are using the firearm. When you are hunting in the wet weather, just run a tight patch with solvent down the barrel and get this moisture out. Obviously, you would want to go from breech to muzzle. Just think about going in the wrong direction and pushing all of this water into the chamber. The next day a stuck case is the result.
You will find that the Otis brushes will give you many if not at least 20 times the life of an ordinary brush. The main reason is you do not have the ability to reverse this brush in the bore. You can only pull the brush from breech to muzzle. Many people with solid rods have the tendency to go back and forth with the brush. This is equivalent to bending a wire back and forth until it breaks. Reversing a brush in the bore always damages the brush, and many times damages the bore. This must never be allowed to happen on any valuable firearm. You may notice that when you pull a brush out of the bore, the bristles throw the powder residue away from the firearm. Placing a patch over the rod and muzzle will illustrate how the brush catapults the dirt. This is necessary to clean the brush so that you do not drag this abrasive dirt back through the chamber and neck. Can you imagine someone going in the wrong direction? We have all done this with the old conventional equipment. This catapults the dirt right into the chamber, locking lugs and receiver. In fact this is the number one cause of firearm malfunctions.
You may notice that each tool has a compartment in the soft-pak case. Professionals never work out of a bucket. If you throw your tools into a box the tool you need the most is back on the last job. With a tool compartment like the soft-pale all your equipment is in one place and accounted for.
The Otis bore solvent has a rust inhibitor and preservative added. It is also recommended for the outside of the barrel. Put a few drops on a patch and rub into the surface until dry.
And lastly some helpful hints.
Limited Breech access
On some rifles (such as 22 rim-fire semi automatics and small frame revolvers) you may not be able to get the tip into the chamber because it is too long when assembled on the rod. Take the tip off and put the patch on as you normally would. Put the tip into the chamber just as if you were inserting a shell. Turn the cleaning rod in a clockwise direction and reattach the tip. Pull the powder residue and debris out of the barrel in the natural direction of the bullet. The same procedure will be needed for the brush. In some rare cases the brush cannot be used. Repeat this step each time until the firearm is clean. You may want to try the small caliber equipment on the 22 rim-fire.
Otis produces a solvent, lubricant, and rust inhibitor in one product. The important rule is not to overuse any cleaning product. Only a few drops on the front of the patch is necessary. If you use too much solvent, it will wash dirt into the trigger mechanism. This is the cause of a sticky trigger. If you let the firearm stand with the muzzle up, the solvent will drip into the receiver and cause premature failure of the stock.
Some target shooters must take a fouling shot. One of the reasons for this is that they have left oil or solvent in the corners of the rifling. This will increase the pressure by causing an abnormal seal on the bullet. You can increase the accuracy of your first shot by making sure no oils are left in the corners of the rifling. Simply run a dry tight patch through the bore before you intend to use the firearm. This is a must for hunters or snipers who are not afforded the luxury of a fouling shot
This is simply a condition that exists with many firearms. When you go to purchase a firearm clean the bore and run a brush from the breach to the muzzle. Pull slowly and choke up on the cleaning rod. You will be able to feel the inside of the rifling as you pull. Sometimes the brush will start to pull with less resistance, and this is an indication of an over sized bore.
If this occurs at the throat, the firearm may have been fired many times. If the bore is over sized near the muzzle, someone allowed water to lay in the bore. This is common occurrence and exists in over 1/3 of the used firearms. The above condition greatly effects the accuracy of the firearm and a new barrel is usually the only cure.
When you purchase a firearm, remember that all firearms record their history form the breech to the muzzle. Look down the barrel of the firearm. You can tell about how many shots have been fired, and the cleaning method (solid sectional rods leave marks in the muzzle and rifling). Shot out barrel and rusted barrels can sometimes be detected.
Aluminum Cleaning Rods
Aluminum rods will damage most firearms if they are allowed to rub extensively in the barrel. You may believe that aluminum is soft and will not damage the firearm. Aluminum creates an oxide on its outer surface. This oxide is similar if not identical to the aluminum oxide used in grinding wheels and knife sharpening equipment. This oxide will lap the bore and make it over sized and uneven. Any over sized condition allows gas to escape ahead of the bullet, thus random velocities occur.
Many cleaning instructions recommended that you do not run a tight patch. This is because the rod is so cheap it will break or bend. Run as tight a patch as possible, as this will mold the patch into the corners of the rifling. One tight patch will do the work of 20 or more times with a loose patch.
Excellent information. I read all of the first post but being here at work my time online is limited. i will read more at home.
Good read. Thanks for the info.
I doubt anyone could get close to guessing "number of rounds" as it says, especially with a .22 as they barely wear over time if kept well.
Thanks for sharing.
Due to the amount of good info contained, the number of views and new members on the forum, I wanted to put this thread back on the first page so it doesn't get too far buried.
Good Info SMann,
As to #2...I always tape the cleaning rod with electrical tape to prevent hard contact with bore.
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