Get the Lead Out
How to Clean a Gun In 5 Minutes or Less
Proper cleaning is critical for the maintenance of any gun, yet it is an oftenoverlooked process. Here’s a quick and painless method.
Keeping a firearm’s internals clean is essential to keeping it reliable and accurate. Whether your gun is intended for use as a defensive weapon or if it’s your go-to gun for competition or any purpose in between, it’s a good idea to have it cleaned, lubed and ready to go at a moments notice.
A dirty gun can cause all sorts of problems for its owner. Fouling caused by lead and carbon residue and other gunk can lead to malfunctions such as a failure to fire, failure to feed or eject a cartridge, and can even lead to premature wear of parts, leading to breakage.
Fight the Good Fight
Some people relish in the act of gun cleaning to the point that they seem to enjoy it even more than shooting it. Cleaning guns becomes an all-day affair with their guns and cleaning tools spread out all over the dining room table and floor. If that sounds awfully familiar, we say kudos to you. Fight the good fight against carbon build up! Others see gun cleaning as a chore that just needs to be done quickly, but effectively—more akin to doing laundry.
If you don’t have the time for all-day cleaning sessions, follow along to see how we like to quick-clean our guns.
Believe it or not, the topic of gun cleaning can be somewhat controversial; many people have their own methods, procedures and cleaning products that they firmly believe are the only correct ones to use. That said, there are many ways to get a gun clean; we show you one quick, easy and effective method to do it.
Other ways can be more meticulous and get your gun even cleaner, but the trade-off is time and sometimes a part of your sanity. (We jest… sort of.) Before we go to the step by step, let’s talk about cleaners and lube.
We traditionally use products such as Break Free CLP, Hoppe’s #9, M-pro7, Rem Oil and others for our cleaning and lubrication needs, but over the past five or so years there seems to have been a revolution in the gun cleaner and lubrication products market. It seems as if there is a new gun cleaner or lube or combination of both coming to a gun shop near you almost weekly. Whether some of these new-to-market lubricants are the real thing or are just another bottle of snake oil being peddled is worth a closer look at in a future article.
What we have discovered that’s worked quite well for us so far is perhaps the newest kid on the block. Antivenom-xplc by Strike Industries first caught our attention when they announced a $20,000 bounty for the first person or company who can prove there is a better all-in-one or multi-purpose lubricant available in the firearms industry. Now that’s putting money where their mouth is—and as of this article’s writing, nobody’s claimed the money yet.
During our testing, we found that Antivenom-xplc does what it claims to do. While we’re not generally fans of all-in-one solutions—i like my body wash separate from my shampoo, thank you very much—antivenom’s all-in-one claim of providing you penetrating lubrication, cleaning, and protection solution is a hard combination to beat.
One of our favorite methods for keeping our guns clean happens to be one of the fastest too. If you don’t have time to sit down for a complete allout cleaning session, follow along with this step-by-step how-to. The method works for long arms as well as pistols.
There it is. It wasn’t that painful, was it? Using this method, we’re able to quick clean and lube a gun in about five minutes. Depending on condition and amount of use (or neglect), some guns may require a deeper cleaning which would require a more extensive disassembly, such as that of a rifle’s bolt carrier group or a pistol’s slide, which are also important to keep clean.
This quick cleaning procedure is handy for when you’re unable to do a full-on, all-out cleaning whether for time constraints or limited space, such as if you’re at the range or working from out of the back of your vehicle. Armed with these simple steps, you too can now clean your gun in five minutes or even less.