How to Clean, Lubricate, & Maintain a Gun


Paul's picture

Lazy man's method:

Buy an OTIS gun cleaning kit, which is used to pull patches through the bore. I don't like cleaning rods as they often damage the rifling no matter how careful you are.

At the range, right after you are done shooting, pull a bore snake through the bore, two or three times. Dry is fine. The object is to remove powder residue, which hardens up over time. Much better and easier to get it out before that happens.

At home, get a patch on your otis "rod" and pull it through the bore using liberal amounts of Hoppe's #9. This is a very mild cleaner that will not harm the bore. Keep applying #9 until you get a drip out the muzzle end (gun should be tilted down so it doesn't run into the action). Stick the patch end of the Otis rod into a small ziplock bag to keep it wet, then walk away.

Next day, pull that same patch with some new #9 on it, through the bore once. Put the patch in the bag and walk away.

Next day, keep repeating the same step. And continue. Eventually the patch gets really gross but you don't care as you are just getting new #9 into the bore and letting the old drip out. Each day's effort takes about a minute, not much!

You might pull a brush through now and then, or put a new patch on. Up to you. In a couple of weeks that bore is clean. Leave it wet in the safe, and BE SURE to pull a dry patch through to get the #9 out before shooting. Best to store rifles muzzle down if you can; or, if you can't, then pull a dry patch through so solvent won't run into the action or onto wood stocks.

Of course, use CLP to wipe down the external surfaces, right after coming back from the range.