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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
How often should I clean my hunting rifle? I might go to the range two or three times a season. I will go to the range, clean it, go to the range to check final zero with a fouled barrel, then leave it slightly fouled so my first shot is not off the mark.
 

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I clean all my CF rifles after every range time except for the last sight-in before a hunt. I'll leave the barrel fouled after sighting-in. When hunt is over I'll clean' em.
 

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Normally, I verify zero at the start of the season. I start with a clean bore and rarely fire more than 4 or 5 shots. If everything looks good, I leave the bore alone for the rest of the season, whether I fire one shot or ten during the season. The outside gets a wipedown at the end of every hunt. The bore only gets touched if it gets wet, which is rare, and then it is only wiped out with a lightly-oiled patch, then a dry patch.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks...I guess what I want to prevent is any corrosion in the barrel but I keep my rifle in a dry place inside my home and if it gets out in wet conditions I will clean it out. Of course I'm cleaning it tonight since it gives me an excuse to get into the garage and have a few scotch lol.
 

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I'm with Ray Sendero.
 

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I clean my gun after every shooting, bullet has same POI out of my gun clean bore or dirty, before i go hunting i will shoot one three shot group, and wont clean my gun till my tag is punched, just so i have peace of mind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Fouled barrel or Clean?

How many of y'all hunt with a slightly fouled barrel or clean? I guess it depends on the rifle, but I'm wondering how much leaving a fouled barrel can affect the barrel in the long run if left for a hunting season.
 

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How many of y'all hunt with a slightly fouled barrel or clean? I guess it depends on the rifle, but I'm wondering how much leaving a fouled barrel can affect the barrel in the long run if left for a hunting season.
I can't tell much, if any, difference, as to point of impact, with my centerfire rifles but my match barreled .22LR has given me fits.

SK Standard Plus needs to start from a clean barrel and even then the POI moves a bit until i've got 15 or 20 shots through it. Because of that, I've left the barrel fouled before heading to the woods the following weekend- that didn't work out either. I think the greasy lube on those bullets dries out in the barrel or goes rancid or something because the first groups, with week-old fouling, can move the POI an inch at 50yds.

Different .22LR ammo has it's own thing going on in my match barrel but I have found that CCI, be it their "Standard Velocity" or "Mini Mag" offerings, always shoot best with a clean barrel (in my rifle). With CCI Mini-Mags, from a clean barrel, the POI is always the same and groups are tightest, impressively so. After 20 or so shots, their groups open up- just the opposite of SK or Eley ammo. In fact, CCI "Mini-Mag" ammo's accuracy, from my rifle, blew me away! ...Especially for a supersonic non-target round. Mini-Mag's easily equaled the best groups from SK Standard Plus, but only from a clean barrel and only for about 20 shots- then I'd have to swab the bore again.
 

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Each barrel is a rule unto itself. Some barrels of mine don't seem to care, others change point of impact quite a bit. For barrels that shoot differently after a couple shots, I have been trying leaving some Kano Kroil in the fouled bore. It seems to not disturb Point of Impact significantly, but prevent rust.

CDD
 

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I clean up my rifle barrels before I take them to the range to sight it in and after firing it to sight in I leave it alone until the hunting season is over. The reason is if you clean it and then go hunting any oil or solvent left in the barrel can cause the first shot to be a flyer and since the first shot is very important I don't clean until the end of the season. It will not hurt the rifle at all to go even a few months before being cleaned unless you were using ammo with corrosive primers.
 

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My Model 70 Featherweight in .270 likes an ever so slightly fouled bore to keep groups together nicely, but POI doesn't change unless the barrel is absolutely filthy. I usually clean it well then punch the paper with a three shot group before I head out for the season. Shouldn't hurt the gun in the long run, but then the most I've ever shot from that gun during hunting season was 5 rounds anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I clean up my rifle barrels before I take them to the range to sight it in and after firing it to sight in I leave it alone until the hunting season is over. The reason is if you clean it and then go hunting any oil or solvent left in the barrel can cause the first shot to be a flyer and since the first shot is very important I don't clean until the end of the season. It will not hurt the rifle at all to go even a few months before being cleaned unless you were using ammo with corrosive primers.
Does anybody make factory ammo with corrosive primers?
 

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My Winchester M70 Classic will throw a flier from a clean barrel, but shoot cloverleafs once the barrel is fouled. I clean the gun during off-season shooting. I will check zero right before the season, and I do not clean the barrel again until after the season.

I follow the same procedure on all of my guns, but my M70 seems to be the most sensitive to shooting from a clean barrel.
Dan
 

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I have a practice that I always follow. Two fouling shots before I start a match or go hunting, but everyone and every rifle is different. My match rifles have hand lapped barrels and are glass bedded to custom stocks. Cold bore, they will hit where they are aimed, but the following shots have added equations, barrel fouling and heat. Now for hunting that isn't a big deal as I limit myself to 400 yards. It's called hunting not sniping. In a match, where I could be shooting at long ranges, 600 to 1000 yards, every change in the equation makes a differance. And the longer the range the more those differances are amplified.
 

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There are guys on this sight that claim their guns shoot better and better the dirtier the barrel gets, and I am talking hundreds of rounds. The only reason they end up cleaninf them is they start to feel guilty! Personally I dont have that much personal data or expirience in that so I end up keeping my barrel fairly clean all the time except during hunting season I will not clean the barrel until the season is over.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I went to the range today and there was very little POI change between clean barrel or fouled barrel. I shot three shots and ran a dry Boresnake through each time.
 

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Almost every rifle I have will throw the first round from a clean bore. As a matter of habit I always put the first round down range into a target by itself. After that its all good. I always make sure I have one fouling shot down the barrel before heading into the field, even if its a few days ahead of time. Same condition when I used to shoot matches, The difference in some cases was only a inch or less but that could be the difference in a point or not.
 

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As previously stated every barrel is a law unto itself. You have to check to see what each one likes. I have had some that shoot to the same point of impact first CLEAN cold and subsiquent 3 - 5 rounds. Then the groups started to open. Also have had a couple of barrels that liked to be fouled. One thing has been constant, if you leave oil in the barrel the first shot moves out of the group. Wether you plan to shoot it clean or fouled, oil a barrel after you are finished a range session or hunting to prevent corrosion. Then the next time before you shoot or hunt run 3 - 5 dry patches through it to remove any oil. That should give you a good compromise or you could be lucky and get one that will not shoot anyway but dirty.

Turcis1
 
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