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Thread: Tips on cleaning my first rifle

  1. #1
    Regular Member ()pen(arry's Avatar
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    Nov 2010
    Seattle, WA; escaped from 18 years in TX

    Tips on cleaning my first rifle

    I've owned pistols for many years and have always cleaned them with a rod, brush, and cotton patches. I bought my first rifle a few days ago. It's a Remington 700 XCR in .270 Winchester (I opted for a Bushnell 4200 Elite 3-9x40 scope; I'll upgrade to a Leupold VX-3 later). I didn't have a lot of time when I was buying the rifle, and forgot to pick up cleaning supplies, so I went back today and picked up a Hoppe's BoreSnake, some more No. 9 solvent, and a cleaning mat.

    I've never cleaned a rifle. Is there anything I need to know that I wouldn't know from cleaning my pistols? What do people think about the BoreSnake? I've read mixed reviews. Should I go get a one-piece steel rod and a brush and clean the rifle the traditional way? I wouldn't mind a full explanation of how to clean a rifle, if anyone feels inclined to help me out Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Regular Member rodbender's Avatar
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    Jun 2008
    Navasota, Texas, USA
    First thing to do is figure out how to remove the stock and the bolt. It is essential in cleaning a rifle as it is the only real way to expose the internals, especially on a 700.

    First I run a cloth through the bore with Hoppe's #9. What I use for cleaning is a good spraying of Berryman's brake parts cleaner. I use a plastic brush for any built up stuff. Be sure it is part #1420 on the back. It is the exact formula as a well known (Gun Scrubber I think) gun cleaner and is a lot cheaper. They make 2 different ones so make sure it is part #1420. I then blow it clean with compressed air. If you don't have a compressor use computer canned air. You can let it air dry but it takes a bit longer. Then run your bore snake through the bore starting at the chamber end. Oil all of the moving parts with oil of choice. I use synthetic because it doesn't break down like regular oil. Wipe it down to remove all excess oil and I usually leave it out an hour or so and wipe it down a second time after it oozes out of crevices. I will then put it together, make sure everything is working properly and store it until I use it again.

    I do not put oil in the bore before storage. Some people say the bore will rust but I've never had this problem.

    Happy shooting!
    Last edited by rodbender; 12-31-2010 at 08:46 PM.
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  3. #3
    Regular Member
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    Jun 2010
    Puyallup< WA
    what rodbnder said, pretty much covers it. Get a good coated rod, and use nylon brushes instead of metal ones. I stopped using hoppes #9 and now use the barnes solvent, it seemed to work a bit better for me, but not a huge difference. Always clean a rifle from breech to muzzle if possible. Cleaning from the muzzle can damage the crown and ruin accuracy. I only oil the barrel and chamber if I'm storing the rifle for an extended period. Also, take special care to remove copper fouling in a rifle, and clean it until your patches come out clean.

  4. #4
    Campaign Veteran since9's Avatar
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    Jan 2010
    Colorado Springs, Colorado, USA
    Quote Originally Posted by rodbender View Post
    I do not put oil in the bore before storage. Some people say the bore will rust but I've never had this problem.
    I do, as it's steel, and steel will rust, bore or not. However, I sling a last, dry cotten patch through a couple of times, as oil in the bore isn't very safe come firing time. Still, the residual will help protect it over time.
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