Barrel Cleaning and Break In

Barrel Break in Recommendations

Most all barrel manufactures recommend doing a barrel break in on a new barrel, most of these are custom barrel manufactures for rifle building or re-barreling.  The barrel break in procedure that I recommend also applies the off-the shelf rifle also.  It is actually more important on the large manufactured rifles because a lot of them us hammer forged barrels, this barrel making procedure usually is a rougher bore than other manufacturing technics and when rifles are sent out of the factory the coated with a heavy oil and any dirt gets right into the pores of the metal and this will collect cooper and powder fouling faster and the more that it is fired the more the fouling will accumulate and the more accuracy will be affected.

With my own guns and with the guns we build I do a bore bright treatment first before a shot is fired down a new barrel.

A bore bright treatment is something that I have developed over the years of shooting with all different types of guns and bore bright is a cleaning/polishing compound, it is sold through Brownells as J. B. Bore Bright.

With guns that I build this is something that has been done before it leaves the shop so in that case you only need to do a regular barrel break in procedure, but if you just got an off-the-shelf rifle, I would suggest doing what I would do – first do a thorough cleaning of the bore before you do a bore bright treatment.

First of you need the right cleaning equipment, a one piece rod and the right size jag.  A jag has a sharp point on the end that you stab the center of the patch over and the ribs on the sides are the proper diameter for the caliber of the rifle you are using.  You will need a 22 cal jab for a 22 caliber rifle and so forth.  You want 100% cotton patches 1 3/8 inch ones will work on a 22 caliber through 6.5 or .264.  1 ¾ inch works best for 270 and larger.  Myself I like and sell Dewey Equipment, I like them because they had a large selection of jags for every caliber and they are sized properly so that the jag will force the patch down to the bottom of the lands to get everything out of the bore.  There is a lot other equipment out there that claim to work faster and easier but I have found that if it is easier and quicker it isn’t getting the job done like it should be.

Now that you have the right equipment for cleaning, you need the right type of solvent for the type of fouling you have.  There are two basic types of fouling powder and copper fouling, I myself, like a solvent that will work on both so I like either Lymans Butch’s Bore Shine or Bore Tech, Inc. Eliminator.

Once you have all the right things you run two or three wet patches down the bore so that the bore is thoroughly wet then let it soak about ten minutes to let the solvent do it jobs.  Then with a dry patch push it all the way out (not a back and forth scrubbing action), then look at your patch to see what you have pushed out, the black color is powder fouling and the sparkling things are shavings from the bullet jacket, save these patches to compare them with others you get later.  The bullet shavings you see on your patch could be a rough edge on one of the lands, some of these area’s act like a hack saw blade inside your barrel and tear pieces off the bullet jacket.

Next you repeat the process again with two or three wet patches, let soak 10 or 15 minutes then patch it out again and compare this patch with the previous patch for what kind of fouling you’re getting out and how much fouling.  You might have to repeat this several times until you get your barrel clean.

Once you have your bore clean you need a bore conditioner.  I use “Kroil”, this I a penetrating oil that gets right into the pores of the metal to protect it from fouling build up and corrosion.

After the bore is clean and patched dry, I put a wet patch of Kroil on a patch and run it back and forth a half dozen times to coat the inside of the bore.  After you have finished with the bore use a dewy bolt action lug recess cleaning kit to finish the job.  Also, Kroil works excellent for any place you need lubrication and use it on the outside to protect blued guns from corrosion and the outside of stainless guns to clean them.

Grand Forks Gunsmith