Tips for Cleaning Firearms

 In Firearms, CCW, Self Defense, Training, Blog

Whether you have firearms for sport or self-defense, you should always ensure they are in the best working condition, which means cleaning them regularly – especially after a session at the range or after they have sat unused for a while. Here are a few practical tips for cleaning your firearms.

Tips for Cleaning Firearms

Safety First

Safety is the first thing you should keep in mind when handling or cleaning a firearm. When it comes to cleaning your firearm, you should start by making sure the firearm is unloaded – remove the magazine, check the chamber by visually and physically checking. Begin to disassemble your firearm according to the owner’s manual instructions before you clean it.

Safety also means you should never leave your firearm lying out in the open, even when disassembled, and ensure you maintain safe direction/backstop when you are unloading or cleaning your firearm.

Clean New Firearms First

New firearms are shipped with packing grease and oil. Shooting a new firearm that you have not cleaned properly first is asking for it to malfunction on some level. With firearms, this presents a very obvious risk. Ensure all new firearms are cleaned properly before taking them to the range.

Wearing Gloves

The oils present on your hands can easily make the task of cleaning your firearm harder – these oils can rub off on the exterior of the firearm that you just cleaned. Avoid the added hassle by wearing gloves while cleaning your firearm, and make sure the gloves are non-static if you will be working with your firearm.

Lubricate

There are plenty of different types of firearm lubricant available on the market, and most professional firearm owners recommend you use it. Lubricating your firearm after cleaning (and before shooting) ensures that your firearm remains in excellent mechanical condition and decreases the likelihood of malfunctions. Consult your firearm owner’s manual for specific lubrication instructions.

*88 Tactical Founders Club members get 15-20% OFF gun cleaning and other armorer services. Discounts are just the start, click here to learn more about 88 Tactical memberships.

 

Recommended Firearm Cleaning Products

 

SLIDE GLIDE LITE

Slide Glide is the lubricant used by the 88 Tactical staff and it goes on every gun that comes in for cleaning. Competition shooting forefather Brian Enos, aided by a friend who was a lubrication engineer at General Motors, developed Slide Glide due to the lack of quality firearm lubrication when he was shooting professionally. Slide Glide is lube you need to keep your guns running.

APPLICATIONS:
  • 30+ degrees F / All Firearms
  • Centerfire Pistols: Non-compensated & Compensated
  • Rifles: All action types (including Lever Actions)
  • Shotguns: All action types
  • Revolvers: (Internal action parts only – not for the cylinder)
  • Semi-auto and .22 Revolvers
  • Carry Guns: Applied extremely sparingly for maximum reliability.
ADVANTAGES OVER OTHER FIREARM LUBRICANTS:
  • It softens felt recoil in semi-autos.
  • It’s super “stringy” – it stays where you put it – forever.
  • It is blended with the highest-grade extreme pressure compound available.
  • Slide-Glide provides a dramatic improvement in lubrication compared to conventional oils and greases such as lithium, or lithium-based metallic greases containing molybdenum or graphite.

Additionally, it is engineered to have a stringy characteristic that prevents “tracking” or shearing on sliding metal surfaces. It stays put – ceaselessly dragging itself back into the friction areas of the cycling slide and barrel.

 

Gunzilla BC-10

Gunzilla is a favorite of 88 Tactical staff, and is the cleaning compound used in our gunsmith room. Made from natural-based materials, Gunzilla contains no water and no petroleum solvents. It’s safer and more effective than other gun cleaners, and can be used on every type of gun – handguns, shotguns, rifles, automatic weapons, black powder guns and cannons.

Gunzilla effectively removes carbon, copper, lead, rust, black powder, and plastic particles left from shotgun sabots/wads. Most cleaners soften carbon, but it still must be scraped or scrubbed off a gun. Gunzilla’s unique formula breaks the bonds of the carbon molecules and turns them into a sludge-like liquid. It also neutralizes and cleans the residue left by corrosive primers.

Gunzilla contains NO HAZARDOUS CHEMICALS, is non-flammable, and non-corrosive. It’s also air shipping safe and is legal to carry in your checked baggage on an airliner.

 

OTIS RIPCORD 9MM

Otis Ripcord 9MM delivers the best one-pass cleaning you can get for your firearm. Run it through your gun from Breech-to-Muzzle®, with no gravity feed necessary. The rigid, helix-shaped rubber core keeps the cleaning surface pressed against the bore, engaging the rifling for an aggressive clean. The braided Nomex® surface can take up to 700 degree heat, so you can clean it at the range or in the field while the barrel is still hot. Attach a bore brush to get an even more thorough clean. It’s fast, effective and ultra-portable.

SPECS
  • Cleans: .38/9MM/.357cal
  • Length: 22.5″
  • 10 inches of aggressive cleaning surface
  • Caliber specific molded rubberized core for 360 degree cleaning
  • Heat resistant up to 700 degrees F
  • Nomex® fibers act as both a brush to loosen and a patch to capture fouling particles
  • Easy-feed design makes for quicker cleaning from Breech-to-Muzzle®
  • Equipped with 8-32 threaded ends to fit all Otis cleaning components

 

OTIS RIPCORD 5.56MM

Otis Ripcord 5.56mm delivers the best one-pass cleaning you can get for your firearm. Run it through your gun from Breech-to-Muzzle®, with no gravity feed necessary. The rigid, helix-shaped rubber core keeps the cleaning surface pressed against the bore, engaging the rifling for an aggressive clean. The braided Nomex® surface can take up to 700 degree heat, so you can clean it at the range or in the field while the barrel is still hot. Attach a bore brush to get an even more thorough clean. It’s fast, effective and ultra-portable.

SPECS
  • Cleans: .223cal / 5.56mm Rifles
  • Length: 36″
  • 10 inches of aggressive cleaning surface
  • Caliber specific molded rubberized core for 360 degree cleaning
  • Heat resistant up to 700 degrees F
  • Nomex® fibers act as both a brush to loosen and a patch to capture fouling particles
  • Easy-feed design makes for quicker cleaning from Breech-to-Muzzle®
  • Equipped with 8-32 threaded ends to fit all Otis cleaning components
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