Birchwood Casey Gun Care Products

Birchwood Casey press release:

Although many hunters are tempted to seldom clean the bore of their hunting rifles, it’s important to do so on a regular basis to maintain your rifle’s accuracy and be prepared when you get a shot.

Birchwood Casey makes a number of fine products to clean and maintain firearms, including Bore Scrubber, Barricade and their new Universal Rifle Cleaning Kit, which contains everything you need except chemicals to give your gun a quick cleaning, either on the bench, or in the field.

The new Birchwood Casey Waxed Canvas Mat ensures cleaning fluids stay off your bench and the Nest Rest doubles not only as a shooting rest, but a cradle to hold your gun for cleaning as well.

To clean the bore, follow these steps:

  1. Make sure the gun is unloaded.
  2. Run a dry patch down the bore to remove loose fouling.
  3. Run a Bore Scrubber soaked patch down the bore (twice).
  4. Run a series of dry patches down the bore until they come out clean.
  5. Scrub the bore with a Bore Scrubber soaked bore brush of the appropriate caliber.
  6. Follow up with dry patches until they come out clean.
  7. Use Barricade or a Silicone Cloth to wipe the gun down. If the gun will be stored for a while, run a patch covered in Barricade down the bore.

To see the Birchwood Casey products in action, watch the YouTube video above.

29 Responses to How to Clean Your Rifle Barrel: Guns for Beginners

  1. 8541 tactical says he really doesn’t clean his barrel that often, just runs a dry boresnake down it after a day of shooting and maybe uses a solvent and patches every 600-1000 rounds. I think he might care more about accuracy than some people.

    • More barrels have been ruined by improper cleaning than ever were by not cleaning at all. By a rather large margin, I wager. I have seen dozens of crowns destroyed by people cleaning from the muzzle.
      I notice that nowhere in this article does it detail the dangers of pushing things down a bore from the crown(the crown is the very end of the barrel, the very important little bit that is the last thing the projectile touches as it leaves the bore) end. Only a tiny amount of crown damage is needed to ruin the accuracy of the firearm.
      Not all firearms allow cleaning from the chamber end, but if one MUST clean from the muzzle end, extreme care is needed to avoid damaging the crown.

  2. You really shouldn’t “white glove” clean your rifle’s barrel (hunting rifle or otherwise), until you start seeing accuracy start trailing off (i.e. your 1 inch rifle/ammo combo start opening up to 1.5 inches or 2 inches)

    Some rifles, this is 200 rounds, some it’s 50 rounds.

    Unless you zero your rifle on a cold bore, you shouldn’t go hunting on a cold bore. – for those that watch “Shooter” too many times, “cold bore” means “squeaky clean bore”, not literally cold.

    • People tend to overclean tactical rifles. In reality, it takes thousands of rounds to develop significant fouling with modern powders and jacketed bullets. For precision rifles, I can see the argument. But precision rifle guys tend to be more than a tad OCD anyway.

  3. Spray some CLP into the chamber.
    Let it trickle down the barrel.
    Run the bore snake through it once or twice.

    Every few thousand rounds do a full detail cleaning of the rifle.

    Job done. A good rifle using good ammunition shouldn’t require much more than that.

    • Seconded. Most people do more damage to their bore overzealously cleaning their guns than actually shooting the things. In all honesty, modern metallurgy has advanced to the point where bores are already plenty bullet and corrosion resistant.

  4. So we are supposed to take the advice of a company that sells cleaning equipment on how often a rifle should be cleaned? I would use another source who does not have skin in the game but is concerned with accuracy and properly maintaining their rifles.

    • Winner winner!
      When toothpaste was first sold, the recommended amount was the size of a small pea. Now commercials show the entire brush covered, with overlap at both ends.
      A small pea is still more than enough.

  5. Every cleaning system mfr and top gunner has a different idea about gun cleaning. Thats just the way it is. I’ll give BC kudos for not saying use a bore brush but minus points for not saying to use a coated one piece cleaning rod.

  6. Get this folks, Baricade is ILLEGAL in commie kalifornia. It’s just to dangerous for the serfs to use. Hell, it ain’t even semi auto.

  7. I was taught that any gun I had used was to be cleaned that day before I got to eat.
    in my early (age not yet 10) years it was my grandfathers Winchester 1890 slide action .22 long rimfire.
    and it was cleaned properly, taken apart at the take down screw and the good Hopies #9 first and then the light gun oil that dad brought home from work was the final wipe.
    ( I still have a half full glass pint bottle of the original formula #9 (or the version in use in the 1950s anyway) that these days is just used to provide the proper smell at my loading and gunsmithing bench via a moistened patch snagged on a convent nail… its the benzine and banana oil in the formula that makes it good … Yep that well known carcinogen Benzine is the main reason that had to reformulate it but I used about a pint a year of the original for about 40 years before they changed it with no harm (yet) but I always had good ventilation I was not Huffing it in a closet!
    I use the modern “safe formulation” but it is not the same ….
    I have never understood those that as far as gun care is concerned only spray some WD-40 on a gun that has been rained on and call that cleaning their gun.

  8. Oh yeah? I happen to like messing around with my weapons and cleaning them. I take pride in my possessions.
    Don’t want to clean your guns, goody goody gumdrops for you.

  9. Several drops of solvent in the barrel and let soak a few minutes.
    Run a solvent wet brush a couple times
    Run a couple solvent wet patches
    Run a dry patch
    Run an oil wet patch, pushing rod 1″ at a time (Eley recommendation)

    If you store the rifle for awhile, you are done, but run a dry patch before firing (Eley).
    If you shoot frequently, finish by running a dry patch right away.
    ________

    I’ve tried avoiding the brush, but it takes a pile of wet patches to get it clean that way.

  10. Start with a dry patch to remove loose fowling. Run wet patches soaked with Sweets 7.62 solvent from breech to muzzle until the last patch is white.

    Let it soak for 5 minutes.

    Run dry patches until the last one is clean. Run a patch with oil or metholated spirit to neutralise the solvent.

    Run a dry patch up the barrel before the next use.

  11. Since we’re posting personal recipes:

    – Clean every use, be it 1 round or 1000.
    – Hoppes9 soaked mop to soak the bore.
    – Let sit a few moments while you clean the action.
    – brush about 4 to 8 times to disrupt fouling from bore walls.
    – Run dry patches until clean.
    – Run lube saturated patch as final and to reduce adherence of fouling during future shooting.

  12. Here’s how to clean your barrel:

    Don’t, unless obviously fouled or obstructed. If it is, follow the manual that came with the gun.

    Done.

  13. Actually, your barrel will shoot best with a few fouling shots to lead the low spots – use a soft lead bullet for this. Just don’t store it long term with a fouled barrel. As a gunsmith, the biggest culprits of not cleaning their guns are duck hunters and their shotguns. It’s been multiple times I’ve opened up a duck gun that I can only describe as having been dropped in a marsh. Please, even if you take it to a gunsmith, clean your shotgun each season. I despair when I open one up and it’s rusty and clogged with reeds inside despite being only a year or two old. Rimfire guns also seem to get cleaned too infrequently but they don’t get abused as much. If you’ve got a complex gun, don’t be ashamed to ask the local gunsmith to either detail strip and clean it for you or show you how to.

  14. I clean my rig after every single round i put through it. Your a fool if you dont either. By the way, i have a new line of gun cleaning products im selling …

  15. I asked the gunsmith at my range how often the rental ri fles got cleaned. He said “When they jam or lose accuracy.” The manual for my Hi-Point PCC says “A brush every 500 rounds, strip at 1500-2000”, and pistol am mo is dirtier than rifle (you should see how black the brass gets.)

    OTOH, I have a Win chester Mod 1906 .22 that I clean every time I shoot because it’s a beautiful, 98 year old fire arm.

  16. Different guns need different routines.
    My .22lr guns need more frequent cleaning, especially since the bullets are lead, not jacketed (mostly).
    My Mosin Nagant uses surplus ammo, so cleaning is very different, since the ammo is corrosive.
    My 7.62×39 rifles don’t get cleaned much, even with surplus ammo.
    Shotguns get the bores run through with a cleaner soaked mop, then swabbed dry, then a light coat of gun oil ( and helmet liner, for the vets out there 🙂 ).
    These routines seem to work. For me. YMMV.

  17. I wish to caution people (again) on the hazards of using a wire brush (be it bronze, copper, etc) too much. Brush only from breech to muzzle, don’t pull the brush back into the bore over the muzzle. Use a bore guide to keep your rod from bending as it goes into the chamber.

    MPro7 is good for cleaning/loosening powder fouling.

    Hoppes #9 is good for removing lead fouling, but for copper fouling, you’ll need to use something more aggressive.

    A lot of your need for cleaning metal fouling out of a bore is a function of how rough the bore is. Rough bores with tool chatter or corrosion can really load up with metal fouling. Bores that are chrome plated, or nitrided, tend to foul much less than chro-moly bores with chatter or corrosion.

    For those who reload, investigate the “CFE” line of powders from Hodgdon. They work pretty well at reducing copper fouling, esp. the CFE-223 powder.

    For extreme copper fouling, I’ve had to go down bores with abrasives like Butch’s Bore Shine. There’s been rifles in my shop that have taken me two days to get all the copper fouling out. A clue that you’ve got severe copper or lead fouling is how few shots it takes to heat your barrel to the point where you can’t touch it. Severely fouled bores I’ve had to clean for customers sometimes have been too hot to touch after as few as five shots.

  18. Step 1: Spray some Ballistol down the barrel and let it soak through the whole length.
    Step 2: Run a bore snake through it a couple times.

    People really overthink and overspend on their gun cleaning. It’s a simple process and you only need to do deep cleanings where you disassemble the entire gun 1-2 times a year depending on how much shooting you do.

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