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#4648940 - 01/28/18 11:19 AM Revolver cleaning best practices
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 41758
Loc: New Jersey
I love revolvers but hate cleaning them. I'm always fearful of the short run for a patch on a jag (makes holding by a ball bearing handle and pushing a concern), and for the muzzle itself.

The setup: note good ball bearing rod and muzzle protective device.



What do you do at this point?



I personally never pull it back to clean more, as I figure it just drags dirt and grinds it. Especially if the jag is really tight.

What about here:



I personally unscrew the jag and carefully pull back the rod. Every single time. It gets really old. I do this on every gun that it's possible, SA and rifles included.

Revolvers always make me the most uneasy though.

I don't really use bore snakes.

I'm thinking that a snake, perhaps with brush removed would be prudent. Also perhaps cut blocks of wood to put in place of the cylinder to allow the jag to be pushed through a revolver barrel wotnhout hitting the rear/firing pin area. How about smaller jags? Never really liked patch loops so I don't use them. Jags engage better. But for example, my bore tech .44/.44 jag goes beautifully through a .45 barrel but is really tight on a .44. So why not use one for .40 for routine cleaning after a range day or two?Thoughts?

Figure it's good to critique from time to time. Discuss.

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#4648988 - 01/28/18 11:56 AM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
Reddy45 Offline


Registered: 08/15/08
Posts: 2957
Loc: USA
I went to bore snakes and quit worrying about making the bore shine like a mirror. The brush portion on a boresnake isn't much and it tends to wear down after a few passed so you're mostly just running a soft rope through the barrel.

I mostly use Hornady One Shot for cleaning and lube. It dissolves most carbon and grease on contact and it leaves behind a waxlike lube.

For places where grease is mandated like pistol slide rails or my M1 Garands action, I use Shooters Choice.

I don't see why your revolver couldn't get the same treatment.

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#4649099 - 01/28/18 01:14 PM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
Toros Offline


Registered: 04/22/05
Posts: 264
Loc: Chadds Ford
I use a stiff bristle hopes nylon brush and solvent and one of those wool bore swabs with some Ballistol on the final once over. Lube the few friction points and call it a day.

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#4649243 - 01/28/18 03:36 PM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
bsmithwins Offline


Registered: 06/24/09
Posts: 360
Loc: OR, USA
Short Otis handgun cable and clean from the breech.

BSW

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#4649420 - 01/28/18 06:31 PM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
Al Offline


Registered: 06/08/02
Posts: 18033
Loc: Elizabethtown, Pa
I think most people spend more time cleaning their guns than shooting them. I was one of them.

Honestly I give the barrel a shot of Hoppes foam cleaner. hit it wi a brush twice (both ways), two swabs and thats just me. Life is too short. I spend about 2 minutes disassembling, cleaning/oiling, and assembling my semi's

Now my cornets on the otherhand..I spend more time cleaning than playing. We all have our faults.
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#4649642 - 01/28/18 10:36 PM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: Al]
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 41758
Loc: New Jersey
Originally Posted By: Al
I think most people spend more time cleaning their guns than shooting them. I was one of them.

Honestly I give the barrel a shot of Hoppes foam cleaner. hit it wi a brush twice (both ways), two swabs and thats just me. Life is too short. I spend about 2 minutes disassembling, cleaning/oiling, and assembling my semi's

Now my cornets on the otherhand..I spend more time cleaning than playing. We all have our faults.


Well, that's kind of my point. I like to keep residues off, I like more to know that there's some oil on surfaces to help prevent rust. But Im not one to really force a huge cleaning every time...

Most of the time when I come back from the range with 50-100 rounds through, ill not do any brushing, just a few patches down the barrel with hopes elite or ballistol, and leave it at that...

So my interest is more in the process of using jags, or not, and the time consuming process of threading it on, and off, every time a patch is pushed through. Not to mention the higher risk of damage since I'm feeding it through the muzzle end..

If there's a better process, safer way, or I'm having much ado about nothing, I'm happy to hear so. It's really a matter that I figure it's good to have a critique and a do/don't do x every now and again... as simple as some of this seems...

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#4649690 - 01/29/18 12:44 AM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
ZeeOSix Offline


Registered: 07/22/10
Posts: 17762
Loc: PNW
Originally Posted By: JHZR2
So my interest is more in the process of using jags, or not, and the time consuming process of threading it on, and off, every time a patch is pushed through. Not to mention the higher risk of damage since I'm feeding it through the muzzle end.


I use the same process you do, but I use a nylon jag and don't unscrew it from the rod. I just careful pull it back out after removing the dirty swab. No real danger of damaging the bore.

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#4649880 - 01/29/18 08:33 AM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
Astro14 Offline


Registered: 10/10/10
Posts: 8525
Loc: Virginia Beach
I'm not a long-time revolver owner, but I've been cleaning guns for a long time...so...a few thoughts...

I don't think you need a muzzle device on a 4" revolver barrel. Easy enough to keep the rod from contacting the crown. Yes, crown wear degrades accuracy, so don't hit it with the cleaning rod when you move the rod those few inches.

I let the Hoppe's do the work: wet patch, let sit. Bronze brush (with bronze core, not steel). Dry patch. Repeat if needed. Final pass is a patch lightly dampened (several drops) with CLP. Just enough to leave oil on the metal. Not dripping.

I've never worried about pulling the jag back out...should I? Even a bronze jag is not much compared with a copper jacketed bullet being deformed by the pressure of the powder charge... On a pistol barrel, I remove the patch and slide it back through, then patch again, but on a pistol barrel, I am going breech to muzzle (preferred direction anyway).

I clean the external parts of the cylinder (fire ring on the front face) and around the forcing cone with some solvent and a toothbrush. Cylinder bores with solvent on a patch. Then dry patch. Repeat until clean. I've not needed to brush the cylinder bores, just repeat the solvent patch a few times. I follow the solvent with CLP. A good wipe with CLP on all other surfaces until they come clean.

A bright light, bore light, is very useful for seeing the condition of the bore and rifling. You can tell if they're clean by the way they reflect the light. Over-cleaning causes wear, but the usual means for that is the rod impacting the crown, or hard dirt being run back and forth through the bore, which is why I'm careful around the crown and only runa patch through once. I can get patches on Amazon for about .01/each...so, I use them just once through each time...

When I'm all done, the gun, any gun, gets the metal surfaces wiped with an oiled (lightly) cloth. Very little oil, just enough to fill the pores without making the metal surface "shiny" or "wet". Then it goes into a gun sock and back in the safe.


Edited by Astro14 (01/29/18 08:34 AM)
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#4649981 - 01/29/18 10:27 AM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
jstert Offline


Registered: 09/14/15
Posts: 127
Loc: ne atlantic coast & sw desert
barrel and all cylinders: neverdull wrapped around a brush; followed by a piece of old tshirt soaked with ballistol, rem oil, hoppes, brake cleaner or wd40; followed by a dry cloth. nooks and crannies: neverdull followed by qtips. wipe dry.

same cleaning routine for semiautomatic pistols except a few dabs of leftover synthetic motor oil on the metal on metal contact surfaces.
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#4651318 - 01/30/18 03:42 PM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
CT8 Offline


Registered: 10/09/14
Posts: 10920
Loc: Idaho
Put solvent in the barrel and cylinder bores with a wet patch using the attachment with the oval slot in it . Let it sit a bit. Brush the barrels and cylinder bores you do not need to get it spotless or try to wear out the rifling by scrubbing. Then put the Jag on run the patch through the barrel as you go past the end of the barrel the patch should fall off. Pull the Jag back through the bore and put another patch on and repeat . Do all the cylinders . No magic or Voodoo ritual is ever required. Lube as needed .The trigger and hammer pivots need lubing. . The Ruger is easy to take a part. I have had a Security Six since 1978 and it has taken a licking and kept on ticking. I also have a SP100 and it is the same as the Security Six and the GP 100 as well as the Redhawks to take apart. Do it.
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#4651632 - 01/30/18 10:39 PM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: Astro14]
JHZR2 Offline



Registered: 12/14/02
Posts: 41758
Loc: New Jersey
Originally Posted By: Astro14


I've never worried about pulling the jag back out...should I? Even a bronze jag is not much compared with a copper jacketed bullet being deformed by the pressure of the powder charge... On a pistol barrel, I remove the patch and slide it back through, then patch again, but on a pistol barrel, I am going breech to muzzle (preferred direction anyway).



That's kind of the crux of my concern/consideration. Some folks are so concerned about damage that they fear carbon particles embedded in cleaning rod coatings. "Hard carbon" is awful crumbly and soft compared to the barrel... and a brass jag seems to be able to pulverize it. So which is it? Fine carbon bits on a carbon fiber or coated metal rod can damage the barrel, or, brass is so much softer than the barrel that if it pulls back through it's not an issue?

Damage to the muzzle is just more plausible here because of the fact that you must feed in that direction. Some make a big deal about chipping the crown.

Copper and lead from a bullet I would assume to be similar in hardness to the brass threaded end and coated surface of a decent cleaning rod. Not sure the jag pulling back through with no patch is harder, but since it's not conformal without the patch, it will also not adhere to the rifling, meaning more chance to affect the barrel.

I personally not only remove the patch, but unscrew the jag when pulling a rod back. I'm not sure the brass end on the rod is any better than a bare jag going backwards, but that's sort of why I created this thread...

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#4651645 - 01/30/18 11:10 PM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
Oro_O Offline


Registered: 09/20/14
Posts: 1351
Loc: Seattle-ish, WA
Your thinking is correct.

Quote:
Short Otis handgun cable and clean from the breech.

BSW


This has been my go-to for a long time. Or a "snake" - modern equivalent.

The only time it's really and issue I find is shooting a lot of lead - which I do because I reload. But modern solvents really help with that - or long soaks.

There are just outstanding new chemicals that prevent the lead or copper adhering like it used to, or that get under it to release it vs. dissolving it like our good 'ole Hoppes. Modern chemicals and pulling through works way better than sweating crown damage like in the past.

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#4651689 - 01/31/18 02:52 AM Re: Revolver cleaning best practices [Re: JHZR2]
Shannow Online   content


Registered: 12/12/02
Posts: 39821
Loc: 'Stralia
Your set-up looks fine, I wouldn't sweat muzzle damage.

Don't reverse a brush while it's still in the bore, don't worry about it with a patch/swab. Reversing a brush while still in the bore means that the bristles have to "stand up" if they are reversing. wrecks your brush.

Re the "hard carbon"...I agree. However, priming compounds (typically) contain ground glass to help the compound initially ignite, and subsequently propogate quickly through the primer compound and powder. THIS is most likely the abrasive in the residue. But then, it's also exiting the barrel at supersonic velocities, and residue getting pushed through with every round.

When I was in Air Cadets, the standard issue was a pull through (some type of natural fibre), and the armorors showed us pieces of barrels that had been in the hands of individuals for a long time who had obviously used the same technique, same hold, and had tension on the side of the muzzle, and wore a definite groove at the crown. Cord was clearly softer then the barrel, but picked up something that wasn't, whether it was years of powder residue, or dirt from the field.

Al's right...some guns have more passes with the cleaning rod then bullets, and that's counter productive.

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