Gun ownership is a rite of passage for many families in the United States. Guns are used for hunting, target shooting, and as an instrument of personal protection. Guns are useful tools when they are properly used and properly maintained.
The primary rule when owning a firearm is gun safety. In part, this includes guaranteeing that the firearm is unloaded and cleared before you disassemble it for cleaning. A safety check is the most important and mandatory first step. It should be done, re-done, and done again to completely guarantee that the gun is clear when the firearm is safe.
Prepare the Area before Cleaning Your Firearm
Before you clean your firearm, find an area that has enough space. The area should be well illuminated, and there should be a free flow of air, so you’re not negatively affected by the cleaning chemicals. Most firearm enthusiasts will clean their gun outdoors, or if they must do it indoors, they will do it by an open window.
Read the Manual
Not consulting the manual is okay if we’re talking about a new toaster or a new Blu-ray player. However, with your gun manual, it is imperative that you keep it and that you thoroughly read it. Manufacturers invest a lot of time in writing the information found in your manual.
The Basic Steps for Cleaning a Gun
- Ensure that the magazine firearm is unloaded.
- Remove metal and carbon fouling from the board using a copper phosphate or nylon bore brush to dry brush the chamber and barrel.
- Dip a clean patch in bore solvent and put on the tip of your cleaning rod. Insert the cleaning patch into the barrel and pellet exits on the other side. You want to saturate the bore surface and the chamber. Do not pull it back through because this will redeposit grime and dirt into the bore.
- Let the cleaning solution set for around 15 minutes. It will break down the bore fouling.
- Use the bore brush to thoroughly clean the inside of the barrel.
- With a dry new patch get rid of any remaining residue and continue to run it through the bore until your patch comes out clean.
- Use a bore snake and CLP, or something like lubricate the bore surface and prevent corrosion. Do not use gun oil to lubricate the bore. If you will store your gun for an extended time, use a heavier lubricant like Barricade or something similar. However, you must remove this heavier lubricant by cleaning the barrel before shooting the firearm.
- Clean of the exterior of the gun including the feed ramp, barrel hood, barrel, and barrel lug. You will need to lubricate the pump, slide, or bolt with a nylon utility brush. A needle applicator can apply lubricant drops to specified areas on the side assembly, frame/action, and the barrel’s exterior per the manufacturer’s recommendation.
- Magazines should be disassembled and cleaned using special-purpose brushes. Wear safety glasses when working with magazines as they are spring-loaded. Do not use petroleum products to clean magazines as this will contaminate ammunition primers. Never lubricate magazines. Instead, clean them with a residue free solvent.
After you’ve gone through the cleaning process, it’s time to reassemble the gun, and then they go through the safety and functional check. This means that you must review the trigger mechanism, magazine ejection and retention system, safeties, and slight operation and locking. Refer to the manufacturer’s manual for how this check can be done.
Finally, once the gun is reassembled, use a gun/reel cloth pre-treated with silicone lubricant to get rid of any leftover debris, acid prints, etc. In a pinch, you can use CLP wipes.
A gun is a powerful tool that has many uses. A clean gun is a safe. Maintenance and cleaning ensure that your gun is reliable, will function well, and that your gun will last for many years.