A cleaning kit is always essential to keep you clean and sterile. This doesn’t only apply to living beings but also to the stuff we use. If you a big-time shooting or hunting enthusiast, you have to ensure that your gun works just fine, even after years of use. And this is only possible if you clean and maintain it regularly. you need to be sure of certain things that assure your gun goes on with the look and works like newly bought.
Hence, it is mandatory to keep your firearm clean. Multiple firing can leave your gun with powder residues and other filth and gases in the barrel. A proper cleaning kit that includes everything you need is a must if you don’t want to buy the cleaning essentials individually.
The cleaning and maintaining techniques for every gun are different. But, one thing that’s common is that you just need to have a cleaning kit. Most cleaning kits come with all the necessary items that you need to properly clean your gun.
What Does A Gun Cleaning Kit Include?
A gun cleaning kit includes all the vital ingredients required to clean the different parts of your gun and keep them free from dust build-ups.
It comes in different sizes and includes several items to encourage your cleaning sessions. So, the most basic and common items in a kit are:
- Lubricating Oil: The oil lubricates the parts of guns for their smooth functioning. Lubricants are essential for guns to reduce resistance, especially in the moving portions.
- Solvent: This helps to eliminate all the stains from the firearm. A brush is needed to apply the solvent. Solvents are the fluid used to remove carbon, lead and other pollutants that damage the gun over time.
- Cleaning Rod: This tool is used to tidy up the interior of the gun using many attachments. It is available in different sizes for different barrel sizes, calibers, and gauges. It is a strong, thin, long, and straight wand made up of metal, tough plastic, or carbon fiber which has one end for gripping and another end for attaching the accessories.
- Brush and Swabs: A brush has many useful jobs to do, like removing dirt, residues, and fouling in the bore of the barrel. Different types of brushes are used to clean the parts of the gun like bore brushes, double end brushes, cleaning swabs, cleaning patches (cotton or wool mop), bore snake, etc. Each one has individual cleaning features.
- Safety Gears: Safety gear is a must while cleaning your gun, but store-bought kits may not include this tool. Use safety gloves, proper protection for eyes, cloth, or paper to protect the ground you will work on.
Before you attempt to clean your gun. You should know how to dissemble it or put it back together to work correctly next time, and no accidents occur. Be sure that you work in a well-ventilated location.
How to Clean My Gun?
A good gun serves generations if maintained the right way. You’ll be surprised to know that most gun users prefer cleaning their guns either at the beginning or end of a session. No matter what activity you indulge in, gun cleaning practice is a must. And if you ask why?
The simple answer would be that firearms are practically built to last long and have quite a few safety features that keep us from accidents. Maintaining them well preserves their functionality and value and serves you the confidence of performance when needed.
Now, let’s get into what’s the right way and how often you should clean it.
Steps to Clean Your Gun the Right Way
Before we start with the steps, a word of advice would be: Even if you are cleaning your gun for the hundredth time, get some well-ventilated place for the job. A small, closed room may not be a great idea.
#1 Unload or Empty the Gun
It is essential that you take time and check and recheck while unloading your gun before cleaning. Ensure the gun doesn’t have a round ready to release and remove it from the barrel.
#2 Disassemble to Its Components
Unless you are a pro at this, definitely check the manual before disassembling the gun. For most break-action guns, you should have a forend, the action, and the barrel.
While for rifles and semi-automatic pistols, you’ll have the magazine, frame, guide rod, barrel, and slide. Remember, it’s not necessary to strip shotguns and revolvers to be cleaned.
#3 Wipe the Dirt Off
Now, get a clean and dry cloth or rag and wipe the gun and its components individually. You can use a cotton swab or toothpick to wipe away the debris from the hard-to-reach areas.
Parts like the trigger guard, alongside the ribs, and places around the ejectors need special attention as they may hold clotted grease, pine needles, etc.
#4 Clean the Barrel and Patches
Once you have cleaned most of the dirt away, move on to the barrel. Take a decent-sized cotton patch and soak it in bore solvent. Push the patch from one end and take it out from the other.
Remember not to pull it back as that may redeposit the dirt inside the barrel. Take a bore brush and run it two to three times inside the barrel. This will help loosen any debris.
Once done, put the solvent-soaked cotton back into the barrel, and run it through. Do this until the cotton comes out clean.
#5 Lubricate the Barrel
Get a small rag, spray some oil and wipe all the components to maintain the luster and shine. This will also help prevent rust, but remember only to use a few drops. For the barrel, take a cotton swab dipped in gun oil and run it through the inside for a light coating.
Keep your gun away in a well-ventilated area and let it rest and dry for a while.
#6 Reassemble and Perform A Functional Check
Every time we disassemble a gun and reassemble it, it is imperative to have a functional check to rule out accidental discharge risk. Do check if the slide operation, trigger mechanism, magazine retention, and ejection all work fine.
During this complete disassembly process, cleaning and reassembly, never miss out on the gun safety rules.
How Often Should You Clean Your Gun?
Every time you use your gun, the ammunition cartridge fires up and ignites the gunpowder and leaves residue inside the barrel. Sometimes, there’s also a small amount of bullet metal that remains. This debris keeps adding and clogging the barrel, which can affect the gun’s reliability and accuracy.
So, ideally, no matter which firearm you use, it should be cleaned after every shooting session.
What Is A Gun Cleaning Solution?
A gun has different components which all work together for smooth and accurate functioning. It is needless to mention how important it is to clean your gun regularly, preferably after every session.
While the gun’s primary cleaning is pretty simple and does not require any expertise, it is always done better with the right equipment. One of which is the gun cleaning solution.
Gun cleaning solutions are specially formulated for deep cleaning most quickly and effectively. Not only that, but they also help protect the gun from rust and corrosion.
What Does A Gun Solvent or Cleaning Solution Do?
Just like gun oil has several merits and purposes to it, so do gun solvents. Gun solvents are basically chemical mixtures that are designed to optimally clean firearm barrels. It also cleans and protects the gun for rusting, residual fouling buildup, loosens, and dissolves any carbon fouling and more.
Gun cleaning solutions or solvents are often harsh chemical mixtures that are highly flammable. They mostly comprise ethylene glycol, potassium, ammonia, surfactants, kerosene, N-butyl ether, caustic soaps, etc.
The primary objective of gun cleaning solutions is to remove any metallic and powder fouling deposited on the barrel’s sides with repeated usage without cleaning.
When we use a gun, the internal components experience extreme heating, friction, and high-speed movement. This causes significant wear in the gun if not maintained regularly and can also hamper the accuracy and functioning.
How to Use A Gun Cleaning Solution?
Gun cleaning solutions are meant to be soaked for a while before they can start working on loosening and dissolving any carbon or metal remains.
Here’s a quick guide to using a gun cleaning solution the right way:
#1 Coating the Solution
The first and foremost is to find a clean bore patch and rod. Now soak the bore patch in the gun cleaning solution, and run the patch through the barrel, completely coating the inside with the solution.
#2 Let It Sit
Before we can proceed with the process, let the solution sit on the barrel for about 10 to 15 minutes. We let the solution soak because it allows them time for the solvent to soften the fouling material and debris to be cleaned easily later.
#3 Clean the Barrel
Remove the patch from the barrel from the other side and remember not to push it back inside again. This will then redeposit any dump that the patch has collected.
Then rerun a clean patch by pushing it from one side of the muzzle and taking it out from the other. Repeat the process until the patch comes out clean. You may use one patch for a maximum of twice.
#4 Recheck the Barrel
Even after cleaning it several times, if you still see any black or carbon debris on the patch, then we have another quick trick.
Take a brass brush, dip it in the gun cleaning solvent, push it into the barrel, and scrub it with a steady but light hand. Work the brush back and forth to clean out any stubborn remains from the inside.
Then, finish it with a clean patch again. Repeat the process if needed.
#5 Gun Oil Coating
Once you have cleaned it thoroughly, apply a light coat of gun oil to protect the bore. Only a drop or two with a cotton swab can do the magic. There you have a clean and shiny gun for your next session.