The importance of cleaning any firearm can be compared to the maintenance of your car. Much like any vehicle it requires regular maintenance in order to stay in good condition.
Many firearm owners that use their weapons regularly swear by the policy of cleaning it after every use. However others clean them every so often.
The simple fact is that the more often you clean it the less likely it will become damaged, the more familiar you will become with the weapon and therefore the more likely you will notice damage or a change in its functioning.
Don’t put off weapon cleaning, it should become a ritual. If you are a newcomer to using firearms I would really recommend that you seek training on its maintenance from a professional source such as your gun shop or a trainer from your local firearms club. Start off on the right foot and you will have longer, more enhanced performance and enjoyment in your sport.
It is also important to use good quality products when cleaning your firearm, after all, you have probably paid a lot of money for the weapon so don’t scrimp on the cleaning products. Use a high quality cleanser to remove any dirt and a good quality lubricant to oil. Here at Viking HQ I use KG Cleaning fluids and Pro-Shot products, but there is a good choice out there – just don’t cut corners here.
Many manufactures sell a complete cleaning system that will ensure you clean it properly and remove any fouling, copper and lead deposits. It is essential all solvents are removed and then re lubricated.
So if I was going to give one top tip here it would be to learn how to oil.
Using a cotton bud or Swab-it put a drop or two on the tip and make that go as far as possible! You only want to leave a slight film of oil on the weapon.
Where should we oil? As a guide and general rule is if it shines then it gets oil, the shinier the area the more friction is occurring. If it doesn’t shine you can oil but make sure to wipe off the excess of as it doesn’t require any more than a sheen.
The better care you take of your firearms, and the more through you are with its cleaning the longer it will last and the fewer problems will arise.
I would also like to mention the absolute importance of following the Basic firearm rules at all times – even when you’re cleaning and maintaining!
- Treat all firearms as if they are loaded.
- Do not point at anything until you are absolutely ready to shoot.
- Keep your finger off the trigger and outside the trigger guard until you are clear and ready to shoot.
- Be certain of you target and your line of fire.
Enjoy your firearm and enjoy your shooting discipline but do so with safety and good practice at the forefront of your sport at all times.