One of the most important things about owning a rifle is making sure you keep it maintained. Regardless of your rifle’s age, cost, or action type, it’s important to clean it regularly.
How to clean a rifle
To clean your rifle properly, you need a cleaning rod, cleaning patches, solvent, rust protector, a rifle holder, and a set of tools. You also need a clean and easy place to work because some of the solvents used when cleaning your gun can be toxic to breathe in or touch.
The first step to cleaning a rifle is making sure it’s unloaded. You should point the gun in a safe direction, open the action, and visually inspect it before partially disassembling it. You can take your rifle completely apart, but during the season, you don’t have to.
Once your rifle is disassembled, inspect your rifle to see if anything looks off. If screws are loose or something looks cracked or broken, it’s important to repair those things before moving forward. If there are no issues, then the next step is to use a clean paper towel to wipe down your rifle and remove loose dust and grit.
For the barrel, make sure you clean it from the rear. Attach a clean patch to the end of the jib on the tip of the cleaning rod, soak it with cleaner, and then push it through the barrel. Next, use a bore brush with a few drops of cleaning solvent inside the barrel as well.
Finally, you want to clean all the metal parts, including the inside of the magazine box, the bolt face and bolt, and the trigger guard. It can be useful to use a toothbrush or a device with small bristles to loosen gunk and truly get the metal portions of your gun clean.
The last step in the cleaning process is adding rust prevention and lubrication. You don’t want to spread the oil directly onto the metal. Instead, spray it onto a paper towel and then wipe all of your parts down. Once you have properly lubricated your gun, it’s time to reassemble it and dry fire it a few times to ensure all is well.