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Joined: 01/05/2013
Posts: 92
cleaning materials for new rifle

Hello. Besides the rod (Tipton), bore guide (Lucas), solvents, patches, and bristle brush what else am I gonna need to clean my new rifle? What's the best lubricant for the bolt? This is my first rifle, well first gun too for that matter, so I don't want to screw anything up. I'd rather spend a little extra time and money doing it right than wasting time and money fixing a stupid mistake. I'm gonna follow a break-in procedure for the barrel even though I've read it isn't necessary.

This is a dumb question but: the solvents I think I may use are "Sweets" and "Hoppes"; and I think that they are for getting the copper out of the bore. The ammo I'll most likely be using is Nosler Partitions. So are those the right solvents for the job or am I looking at the wrong stuff?

What kind of bristle brush? Brass?

Forgive my ignorance.

Don Fischer's picture
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Location: Antelope, Ore
Joined: 03/24/2005
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Get Hoppe's. Sweets is very

Welcome to BGH!

 

Get Hoppe's. Sweets is very agressive. I only use it to get rid of copper build up. Be careful how much oil you use on tghe bolt. Excess oit can leak down into the trigger and foul it. If you've got a wood stock, the oil can drip into the tang area and the recoil lug area and soften the wood over time. Don't over clean. I run a couple wet patch's fhru the bore when I have it up, follow each with a clean dry patch. Maybe once a year I'll get after a barrel with Sweet's to clean out copper fouling. After that clean out it takts me several fouling shot's to get the rifle shooting again. To clean a rifle always give me the willies because the point of imopact changes for the first few shot's just a bit.

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Joined: 01/05/2013
Posts: 92
Ok. forget the Sweets and go

Ok. forget the Sweets and go with Hoppes. thanks. The stock is going to be walnut, and solvent softening it concerns me a little. How long could cleaning a rifle take? Not that I'd be in any hurry, I'm just curious. Should I clean the bore with LOCK-EEZ after I've done all the cleaning or no. And what kind of Hoppes were you talking about?

WesternHunter's picture
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Joined: 05/05/2006
Posts: 2368
Hoppes 9

Yeah for general routine bore cleaning just use the traditional  Hoppes No. 9 Nitro Solvent, it's great stuff and has been the standard stuff most used by shooters for decades.  It's simple stuff, a mix of - kerosene, ethanol, a tiny bit of ammonia, and some other proprietary ingredients. It does what it's supposed to do, is available everywhere, and inexpensive to buy. Just make sure to wipe it dry afterwards. If left in quanity exposed to air it will congeal or gel over time, that's just the nature of the kerosene in it.

When it comes to gun oil, there are a lot of good ones out there on the market.  It's just a matter of finding one you like. Just remember that thicker isn't better and thinner doesn't mean it's ineffective either.  The secret to using a lubricant on most guns is that less is best regardless of what you use or what you may hear.  A very light residual thin film on the contact parts and mating surfaces is all you need. Nearly all gun oils out there on the market are nothing more than repackaged and over-priced light weight machine oils anyway (or some variant of them).

You don't need many gun care chemicals to maintain a firearm, only gun oil and nitro solvent, and a few tools is all.  Sometimes the only chemical you need is a good oil, and that's it. But I encourage you to try as many gun care products out there as you like.  If any of the solvents/oils gets on your walnut stock, just wipe it off as soon as you can.  Won't harm anything.  Not much out there will harm your rifle if used as directed. Carrying that new gun in the field enough times will eventually give it some character anyway.

Think about all those old timers and what they used, long before any specialty gun care products were mass marketed.  All they used was stuff like kerosene as a solvent and a light weight machine oil as a lube, all stuff that was readily obtainable from their local hardware store, nothing more, and often a lot less.  Served them perfectly fine, and their guns likey saw harsher daily use than any of our stuff does today.

WesternHunter's picture
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barrel break-in

It's a touchy subject but I'll tell you my experience with barrel break-in on a rifle.....it's a terrible waste of time and cleaning products.  I've done it on some new rifle and on others I never did.  I can't tell any difference in those that had it and those thats didn't.  I would advise that you just remove all the factory preservative and clean the bore well with a good solvent and swab it dry before firing it for the first time.  Later on you learn first hand that for all the terrible things that get printed about copper fouling, in many cases and in most rifles, copper fouling isn't really all that terrible of a thing.

This idea of sportsman cleaning their guns after every time they're shot comes from the days when primers contained a compound that when detonated left a corrosive metallic salt deposit behind.  That salt deposit would attract moisture out of the air that would lead to rusting and pitting if not remedied soon, especially in humid climates.  No domestic ammo maker has used corrosive primers since the mid 1950's.  No other makers around the world uses them anymore either. 

I'm not at all suggesting to be negligent or scoff at cleaning a firearm.  Routine maintenance and inspection is a big part of responsible firearm ownership. Clean when nessesary and when YOU think it needs to be done. Some guys get way too OCD about it. 

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