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  #1  
Old 12-13-2012, 06:26 PM
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Cleaning a New Rifle


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Maybe this is for the cleaning sub-forum...I don;t know. I just wanted to get this question out to the masses.

Shouldn;t a new rifle be cleaned before firing? I was always taught that and, thenceforth, I always taught it. Get as much of the cosmoline (is it used any more?) or the heavy oils and factory and shipping grit out as possible. If nothing else, then at least clean the bore. Right?

At work, a fellow bought himself and his son a pair of Mossberg rifles for Christmas - 30-06 and 270. They wanted to shoot them now because they won;t be able to on Christmas or for a period thereafter. One of the guys at work returned from a year in Afghanistan serving in the US Army. His recommendation was - "Just go shoot them. You've got to burn that stuff out of there." Maybe there's a new jury decision on this or something that I'm unaware of.

Anyway, today we went to the range. I brought over my cleaning "tacklebox". Both bores looked gritty (as usual) so we cleaned them out nicely before firing.

What do you guys say? Clean them before firing or shoot them as is?
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Last edited by StretchNM; 12-13-2012 at 06:30 PM.
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  #2  
Old 12-13-2012, 06:37 PM
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I always clean them before firing and wouldn't even consider not doing so. It seems wrong and I just don't see how it can be good for the barrel. I guess I'm missing the logic in not cleaning it first.
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  #3  
Old 12-13-2012, 06:48 PM
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Agreed, clean them first. What can it hurt?
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  #4  
Old 12-13-2012, 07:37 PM
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i always clean mine first.
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  #5  
Old 12-14-2012, 02:39 AM
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I also clean brand new silverware and often wash new clothing before wearing it. Is it absolutely essential, either way? Nah, probably not, but heck it's a NEW gun! Why not start off on the right foot by taking good care of it, even before the first shot is fired.

Also, you're going to be cleaning it repeatedly, as part of a barrel break-in procedure, so you might as well have your equipment all set up and ready to roll!
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  #6  
Old 12-14-2012, 03:26 AM
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I have seen some pretty dirty bores in new guns, why take a chance of a piece of grit or carbin scratching the barrel? I have seen surplus guns with the bore nearly completly plugged with cosmoline, only a fool would not think of cleaning first.
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  #7  
Old 12-14-2012, 06:54 AM
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I'd agree with you Stretch. As you discovered the bore was full of crud, so I fail to see how running a bullet through that would help the barrel.

My guns are cleaned and oilled before putting them away. Even at that, when taking them out I'll still run a wet and a couple dry patches thru them before firing. Necessary? Maybe not but I still feel better about doing it.
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  #8  
Old 12-14-2012, 07:23 AM
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Firearms can be test fired at the factory to assure functioning. Can't remember getting a new rifle that didn't have fouling in the bore from such. Yes - new firearms should be cleaned and checked prior to shooting.
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  #9  
Old 12-14-2012, 12:11 PM
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I ALWAYS clean new bores since I have no way of knowing what is up the tube.

About a year ago at my nearby club a fellow shot 10 rounds through a new SKS. It functioned, but JUST. I asked the lad if he wiped out the bore before firing. He said, "No, because I do not own a gun cleaner!" He asked for my assist, so I got my cleaning kit out of my bag and wiped about a pound of cosmoline out of the bore and gas system. I told him back in 1958, when I got my first military surplus rifle, I took a coat hanger, straightened it out, used a plier to put a loop in one end and wiped the bore of my rifle.

Other guys come to the club range with CMP Garands and shoot them. They GRATE as the action functions because they are DRY as a bone! I asked the shooter if he properly lubed the M1? He asked, "Say What?" He was a friendly sort, so I PROPERLY lubed his Garand for him-No Charge.

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  #10  
Old 12-14-2012, 01:37 PM
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Is it absolutely necessary? Not most of the time. But frankly, I usually do it, just to familiarize myself with it and make sure everything's working on the gun as it should.
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  #11  
Old 12-14-2012, 04:22 PM
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If I owned a gun shop, at a minimum, I'd run a bore snake well dampened with CLP through the barrel when each weapon received from the manufacturer. As a consumer, I hate looking down the bore of a new gun and seeing test fire fouling, dust, or anything less than a shiny new barrel!
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  #12  
Old 12-14-2012, 06:55 PM
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These two rifles were bought at Academy Sports. That's sort of kindly like a Dick's store. They just yanked two boxes off the shelf in the back and handed them over, so they really won;t clean them like maybe some gun shops might.

Anyway, there was crud in the barrel. Before we cleaned them, I asked my friend to look down the bore. I told him they usually test fired the barrels before leaving the factory, plus then there's shipping, and any other amount of open-bore time where crud can get in there. So after we cleaned the rifles, I had him and his son look again. Both bores were nice and clean before we shot them. I feel better that way and am not surprised nobody else has heard of the practice of just firing them right out of the box.
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  #13  
Old 12-14-2012, 11:26 PM
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not only does it make sense to clean..it gives you the opportunity to learn about the gun, go through the manual..i guess if you are familiar with that gun it doesnt matter, i usually need 3-4 days from purchasing a gun until im ready to take it tothe range during which time i watch videos and take it apart a few times..
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Old 12-15-2012, 05:30 AM
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The Mini-14 I bought relatively recently was surprisingly clean. It had been test-fired, that I could tell, but it must've only been a shot or two. I took it apart anyway because I prefer somewhat less CLP to remain on the mechanism than what Ruger left on this one.

This is the kind of thing that makes me prefer to clean a gun before first firing. Also, it gives me peace of mind that something is not in the bore that could pose a safety issue upon firing.
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  #15  
Old 12-15-2012, 08:32 AM
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It has been my experience that the majority of new barrels are full of crud and metal filings. I scrub the barrel with a brush and solvent. Then let it sit for an hour at least. Spray some gun clearer down the bore and see what comes out. After a good cleaning it would be best to lapp the bore if you are going to do that.
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  #16  
Old 12-15-2012, 09:38 AM
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Cleanliness is next to Godliness...

The majority of barrels on my many guns are hand-crafted stainless. I always clean a fresh bore before that first bullet takes the ride. A bullet hitting a grain o' sand is like a bus going over a Yugo. The Yugo would get squashed, but the barrel would flex (or bulge) in our instance. My first gunsmith, the great Bob Sutton of Tussey Custom, said to use stick powders in my big, 300 Nevada Desert Magnum rifle when it was a 300WSM because ball powders send much of the flame down the first half barrel, and any unburned residue is a roadblock to the next bullet. He was a gunsmith for 45 years, so I listened to what he said.
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  #17  
Old 12-18-2012, 08:33 AM
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Whether new or old, I think one should always check the bore before firing; looking for obstructions.

I always clean the bore on rifles, and clean after I fire any rifle before it goes on the rack.

Do I presently think your need to do this...No.

After a lot of years of shooting, I have a cleaning habit..maybe even a fetish!!! but I believe that my habit and the cleaning 'things' is a holdover from the black powder and corrosive powder/primer days.

Just my opinion, most will disagree.
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  #18  
Old 12-19-2012, 09:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StretchNM View Post
Shouldn;t a new rifle be cleaned before firing? I was always taught that and, thenceforth, I always taught it. Get as much of the cosmoline (is it used any more?) or the heavy oils and factory and shipping grit out as possible. If nothing else, then at least clean the bore. Right?
Stretch, the stuff that comes out of new barrels these days is amazing.

There is no way it would improve a barrel to shove the crud down the bore.
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  #19  
Old 12-21-2012, 11:21 AM
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I agree TMan (and I'm like you in regards to cleaning, HarryS).

When that co-worker suggested we just "burn it out" by shooting the rifles as is, I didn;t argue with him. Later, in private, I told my buddy that we would clean his and his son's rifles before we fired them, and I explained, the best I could, many of the thoguhts expressed here in this thread. Who wants to run a bullet down the barrel at 3000fps without knowing what's in the bore?
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  #20  
Old 12-21-2012, 12:17 PM
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I always clean a new firearm before shooting it. I also clean the action and trigger assembly. Never seen one yet that came from the factory that I could not get some left over crud out of.
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