1911 cleaning the barrel (best way?)


July 1, 2007, 09:35 PM
I never seem to get the barrel 100% clean, particularily of small deposits around the edges of the grooves inside the barrel. I'm sure that its probably copper from the jacketed rounds...

Point being, here's what I do and you guys can tell me what I'm doing wrong.

First I take a 45 soft brush (plastic bristles) wash the barrel in hot soapy water, pretty much dousing the brush in dish soap and gliding the brush in and out of the barrel. I rinses with just hot water, shake out some of the water and dry immediatley.

Then I'll take a swap with copper remover and generously swab the barrel and let it sit for about 3 minutes or so. I then take my bronze brush and go in and out of the barrel for a good 30 seconds or so. I Take a new swab, dunk it in copper remover and do the same thing again. I do this about 3 times, so 3 doused swabs and 3 bronze brush jobs. When I'm finished (cause now it's starting to get pretty boring) I'll rinse the barrel out with soapy water again and dry quickly. When its all said and done I take a lightly oiled swab and just sorta lubricate the bore, just enough for a slight sheen of oil, only to preserve it.

Point being, I swear, I could take that bronze brush and copper remover and do that 100 times and I bet I couldn't get all the crud out from the corners of the grooves... Or is there a better way?

Teach an amatuer some good barrel cleaning advice :)

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July 1, 2007, 09:39 PM
Damnit can we move this to gunsmithing, thats where I actually wanted it to go... sorry.

July 1, 2007, 09:50 PM
I spray the inside of the barrel with Breakfree CLP and let it sit for at least 30 minutes. Then I swipe it a few times with a standard bore brush (copper?) dipped in Hoppes #9. I finish with Hoppes soaked patches until the patches come out clean, then I run a dry patch through it. Usually, I will put a very lightly oil patch through it, then a final dry one after that. Works for me.

Double Naught Spy
July 1, 2007, 10:30 PM
I can't say that I have found any one way that is best for generalized cleaning. I do like foaming bore cleaner/copper remover for getting out the copper, however.

Otherwise, I have found that simple Tetra Lube, Breakfree CLP, Gun Scrubber, bore solvent, etc. all seem to work reasonably well without any amazing differences for the bore. I have tried various soak times including corking the barrel and filling with CLP or bore solvent and letting it sit for various amounts of time.

In the final analysis after wetting with one or another media, scrubbing with a bronze bore brush, spraying with Tetra lube to rinse, then running a TIGHT fitting patch through will get the most crud out. It may take 3 or 4 patch runs with each being sprayed with Tetra in between, but it seems to work pretty well and seems to work about as well as more involved or longer duration methods.

July 1, 2007, 10:54 PM
My poor boy method works pretty good for me.........immerse barrel and patches, and a rag in diesel. And any other parts of the gun that need it. Scrub and wipe as deemed appropriate. Q-Tips work great in the nooks and crannies. A wet pipe cleaner in the firing pin channel.
After gun is clean, blow off with an air hose.

July 1, 2007, 11:09 PM
I've found that a little Hoppes Elite gel works wonders... It doesn't stink the house up, either... and lots of blue gunk comes out on the patches (copper). I like to run it through on a nylon barrel brush to work it in. On a really bad barrel, it might take a couple of treatments and/or a soak with a paper towel moistened in the stuff.

I also blast my barrels with carb cleaner, then hot water and dishwashing detergent along with a brush, followed by oil and a dab of grease on the lug to tidy things up.

When I'm done, my barrels look like a hall of mirrors.


July 1, 2007, 11:11 PM
I just watched the Wilson's video on how they do it....

1- Go buy a good cleaner just for the barrel that will remove copper & lead.
2- Use enough cleaner to get the entire inside saturated & let it sit for a couple of hours if you can, or at least while you clean, oil & lube the rest of the entire weapon.
3- Then with copper brush, brush out barrel - make sure to run the brush all the way through the barrel back & forth about twenty times.
4- Wipe out barrel until your getting nothing but clean white cloths.
5- Oil inside of barrel lightly & outside needs a light coat of lube.

I would tell anyone to by the wilson video that teaches you how to care for your semi-auto. There are some very important things that most people overlook.

Here's a link.


July 2, 2007, 12:50 AM
nice. I was afraid that soaking the barrel would leave to deposits or tarnishing due to the chemicals. Like when you soak a car part in degreaser it builds up deposits that are a bitch to take off. degreaser is for scrubbing and should be washed right off after heh.. .

What would you guys recommend for a bore cleaner that removes copper and lead that I can soak my barrel in? Something that comes in like 1L or higher volume jugs?

Sounds like thats my answer for making this easiest and most effective.

July 2, 2007, 01:57 AM
Bore Snake, Hopps #9 on bore mop, Brass Brush, Patches until they come out clean, last patch oiled to slightly oil the barrel.

July 2, 2007, 02:24 AM
What would you guys recommend for a bore cleaner that removes copper and lead that I can soak my barrel in? Something that comes in like 1L or higher volume jugs?

Check out Wilson's products - they look like the best out there.

July 2, 2007, 02:50 AM
Get yourself a Bore Snake and run it through 3 or 4 times with out any cleaner or anything shortly after you are done shooting. Normally I drive straight home after shooting and by the time I make the 30 minute drive the barrel is cool or slightly worm and I clean the pistols right away starting with the Bore Snake and it clears the barrel right out;)

July 2, 2007, 03:38 AM
Good idea, i guess thats what the snake is really good for, on the spot cleaning, or at least first stage of it.

I suppose its also easier to get off when the crud has just been put onto a hot barrel, opposed to letting it sit for days and then attempted to clean.

July 2, 2007, 04:19 AM
It is alwasy easier to clean right after then it is days later no matter what you use. I normally put anywhere from 200 to 600 rounds through the pistols I take to the range, either way a few trips through the bore with that Bore Snake and it comes completely clean.

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