Cleaning a 1911?


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joejoeshooter
February 1, 2009, 06:39 PM
How often should a 1911 be cleaned? And don't say every time it's shot.

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rcmodel
February 1, 2009, 06:44 PM
Every time it's shot.

Seriously, there is no set number of rounds.

Some ammo is way dirtier then others.
Lead bullet reloads foul the innards with bullet lube quicker then jacketed bullets.
Salt from sweat in the summer gets all over the gun and rusts it.
Dirt & sand gets in the gun and you might need to clean it every 50 rounds
Etc, etc, etc.

When I was in Unkle Sam's U. S. Army, they made us clean them every time we shot them.
And sometimes twice!

rc

j1979
February 1, 2009, 07:04 PM
Clean it whenever you want. You obviuosly already know the answer by what you said in your first post. I myself clean mine everytime

geronimo509
February 1, 2009, 07:18 PM
if you dont want to clean your gun, buy a glock;)
If you want a reliable 1911 then you should keep it clean, that means after every time you shoot it you should clean it:banghead:
I like cleaning my firearms so its no big deal to me:neener:

Zach S
February 1, 2009, 07:26 PM
After about 500 rounds, it doesn't appear to get any worse.

Don't push it and wait too long, unless you have a stainless pistol. After 3 or 4k with just lube, one of mine needed blasted to get cleaned.

I'll normally pull the slide off and do a quick wipe down somewhere between 750 and 1000 rounds, more often on my EDC (due to ammo prices, I don't shoot as much, and it tends to collect lint). They get wiped down once a week, or after they're shot. I also add a few pulls with a boresnake when they see rangetime.

At 2k they get detail stripped, thoroughly cleaned (brake cleaner required), parts inspected, and a new recoil spring installed. FP spring too, since its included.

A recoil spring will last a lot longer than 2k rounds, I just go ahead and change it when I clean it. Its easier to keep up with than every third time I clean it.

I'm not much for cleaning guns. Several folks have told me that something bad will happen if I dont, but it has yet too. I've got a kimber with well over 10K through it that I've cleaned five, mabye six times and its still as tight as it was the day I got it. The lockwork is is the only thing that's really shown any wear, and I cant really see it, but I know its worn, it has a 2.5 lb trigger.

ETA: I should note that I only shoot jacketed ammo....

DanielW
February 1, 2009, 07:31 PM
I love coming home from the range and stripping and cleaning my Kimber. It's a pretty relaxing activity. With that said I think the most I went was 300 rds.

robctwo
February 1, 2009, 07:39 PM
I often shoot 400-500 rounds at a session. In the summer I've been known to clean every three trips on mt range guns, but would run a bore snake and spray down good with Essox. I always clean before a match. My defense guns are always clean.

possum
February 1, 2009, 08:16 PM
i liet mine go a while without cleanning, here and there, it is not a carry gun or hd so it really dosen't matter how long it goes, i have went over 1k w/o cleanning, but that is rare.

punkndisorderly
February 1, 2009, 08:21 PM
I normally shoot about 100 rounds at sitting. Usually, I clean after every range trip. Always clean after trip two.

I've yet to run enough rounds between cleanings to see problems in my Glocks (perhaps 400 rounds), my Ruger MkIII (perhaps 500 rounds), or my Beretta 92 (perhaps 300 rounds). My Springfield 1911 Loaded seems to start having issues if not cleaned after 300 rounds or so. Mostly failures to go into battery or failures to fire. Seems especially so during the summer where I'm going from the 100 degree and 100% humidity Texas summer into an ice cold indoor range and have lots of condensation. Could be that it's just time for a new recoil spring (on it's way now from Midway).

Something a buddy of mine who was a little less anal than me may be in order if you really want to know how long YOU need between cleanings. After buying my H&K USP 45, he proceded to never clean it just to see how long it would take to start having issues. After about 2000 rounds, he gave up and cleaned it. Perhaps you have enough intestinal fortitude to run it dirty until you have a problem. That will answer your question.

jonnyc
February 1, 2009, 10:33 PM
I shoot about 50 per session.
Every time I do a general wipe-down and run a Bore-Snake a few times. Every third session or so I do the full strip and clean.

franconialocal
February 1, 2009, 10:44 PM
Every time you shoot, wether you wanted me to say that or not....

But, no, really....every time you shoot....:o

Drail
February 1, 2009, 11:58 PM
If it is a defensive weapon it is good to clean every time you shoot it just so you can keep an eye on how the parts are holding up and wearing.

HZOX221
February 2, 2009, 12:39 AM
When it stops working. I have one that has about 65K on the lower without disassembling. The topend gets cleaned about every 5K.

Cleaning is over rated, especially if you are shooting jacket ammo.

model of 1905
February 2, 2009, 01:00 AM
I clean my guns after I shoot them. Every time. Your guns are yours, clean them when you feel the need.

HorseSoldier
February 2, 2009, 01:36 AM
If you're relying on it for any kind of serious/real/defensive sort of use, I don't see any reason you wouldn't want to clean it up and inspect it after any range session.

If it's just a range gun, I would think you can let it slide. Maybe just start cleaning it when the gun starts having occasional failures.

Drail
February 2, 2009, 07:28 AM
Some people never change their car's oil. Some people change it when it gets dirty. Wanna guess whose engine lasts longer?

Ridgerunner665
February 2, 2009, 07:38 AM
OK...

1911's should have the rails, bushing/barrel lockups, and lugs cleaned and lubed the after each use...but I will admit that I don't always do it either.

Detail stripped and cleaned...at least twice a year

INSULATION TIM
February 2, 2009, 07:39 AM
Some people never change their car's oil. Some people change it when it gets dirty. Wanna guess whose engine lasts longer?

That I believe is the perfect, concise answer. Well spoken.

BTW, I'm an "after every use" guy.

Mad Magyar
February 2, 2009, 08:29 AM
How often should a 1911 be cleaned? And don't say every time it's shot.
With all due respect, you were never in the MILITARY!:)

MICHAEL T
February 2, 2009, 06:49 PM
If its is fired even 1 round .I will clean it. If in safe I give a general wipe down 1 time a month. Carry pistol Every Sunday a wipe down and check over.
I was taught by father and military if you use it clean it. Might be a reason all 10 of my 1911's are relieable and have been since day 1

cjw3cma
February 2, 2009, 06:59 PM
As someone else stated - There are gun owners and then there are gun shooters.

A gun owner takes his weapon to the range (or other SAFE area) and shoots it, then puts it away until the next time.

A gun shooter makes sure the gun is clean before taking it to the range (or other SAFE area) then shoots it and then cleans it. And just for the heck of it will clean it again (when ever) because it is relaxing and the more you handle the gun the more it becomes a part of you.

fastbike
February 2, 2009, 11:06 PM
What a crock!:barf:


"As someone else stated - There are gun owners and then there are gun shooters.

A gun owner takes his weapon to the range (or other SAFE area) and shoots it, then puts it away until the next time.

A gun shooter makes sure the gun is clean before taking it to the range (or other SAFE area) then shoots it and then cleans it. And just for the heck of it will clean it again (when ever) because it is relaxing and the more you handle the gun the more it becomes a part of you."

bang_bang
February 2, 2009, 11:11 PM
I clean my pistols and rifles religiously. Especially my pistols, due to the fact that those are the first thing I grab when something out of the ordinary happens. SKS is also cleaned after every use, it's another home defense gun if things really get ugly.

.22lr's get a cleaning every so often, not too picky about those. Shotguns rarely get shot, and are cleaned after every use.

Deer rifles are kept clean throughout most of the year. I'll clean before I check zero, dirty up the barrel a bit and leave it for hunting season. Once hunting season is over, a really good cleaning and lubrication is preformed.

bluez4u
February 3, 2009, 12:00 AM
" a clean gun is a happy gun "

That's all you need to remember.........

9mmepiphany
February 3, 2009, 12:07 AM
why would you not clean it everytime you shoot it?

if you want a gun you don't have to clean as much, i'd also recommend a Glock

sevin8nin
February 3, 2009, 04:09 AM
I clean any gun I own after every time I shoot. I never know if it's going to be just a week, a month, or a couple months before I get to go shooting again, and I'd rather have them clean during the down time.

I'll periodically pull my carry gun and go through it, clean the lint out of the barrel, and add some lube to it as well.

Larry Vickers had a great quote that said, "if you treat your guns like you treat your lawn mower, buy a Glock"

He also related the 1911 to being a connoisseurs' gun and that it required special attention. While i'm not sure about the former, I do believe the latter is true. I saw a guy buy a brand new 1911, that was bone dry, and then proceed to go out and fire about 500 rounds through it and was getting numerous failures to feed and eject. After that the guys at the shop cleaned it a little bit for him and added a good amount of lube, and then he had no problems.

It's my opinion that if you're not going to take the time to learn about all the different pieces of a 1911, and how they wear, and what to watch out for, that you probably shouldn't use it defensively.

chieftain
February 3, 2009, 05:57 AM
And don't say every time it's shot.

If it is a weapon that your life may depend on, you should take it apart, inspect, maintain as needed, clean, and lubricate the weapon every time it is fired.

If it is a toy, for competition or just grins and giggles, do what you want, and treat it with the respect you believe your weapons deserve.

But if you were one of my recruits when I was on the Drill field, that question would never have crossed your mind.

Don't forget to maintain your all your fighting weapons even if you don't shoot them too. Get on a schedule, and keep to it.

It only takes watching a Marine die or get seriously wounded once because of NOT cleaning his weapon(s) properly to make the point.

I always took pride in being a rather fast learner. Most folks who don't, are mainly looking for an excuse to not clean their weapons appropriately.

Go figure.

Fred

PS Please don't come up with the Myth of "over cleaning" a weapon damages it! The only way cleaning a weapon does any damage is if it is done improperly. Learn how to do it properly. It doesn't have to be white glove, but it should be clean and functional.

F

Zach S
February 3, 2009, 09:40 AM
My Polymer Kimber, with well over 10k rounds through it, doesn't seem to mind that I could probably count the number of times I've cleaned it on one hand. The Kimber I had to bead blast to clean didn't seem to care how dirty it was. Matter of fact, since I had to blast it, I would imagine it wanted to stay dirty.

An oiled gun is a happy gun. But mine don't seem to care about being dirty or looking good. I dont know what y'alls guns are thinking, but mine are tools, and they know their place. I require them to go bang every time I pull the trigger, and despite my stainless 1911s looking like they're parkerized internally, the one pistol that's hung up on my was my Glock while shooting weak hand.

And IMO unless you take your engine out to clean it with every oil change, its apples to oranges. And dont assume I dont know anything about cars, I built a Fairmont out of junkyard parts that could do 140mph.

mljdeckard
February 3, 2009, 11:51 AM
I won't carry a gun unless the last thing I did was clean and inspect it.

rbernie
February 3, 2009, 11:54 AM
I won't carry a gun that I just cleaned and haven't fired again to verify its proper functioning. Dry firing is no substitute for a proper function check.

So all my carry guns are technically dirty.

I will usually wipe off the external powder residue after each range session, and drip CLP on the rails to keep 'em wet. I normally only strip 'em down and clean them when I detect a change in their operation, e.g. the trigger pull starts to feel spongy or somesuch.

mljdeckard
February 3, 2009, 12:09 PM
I have never understood this logic, although I have heard others do the same. I am much more concerned about fouling in the extractor and firing pin channel than I am verifying the function of a gun I just shot.

Lonestar.45
February 3, 2009, 01:44 PM
Larry Vickers had a great quote that said, "if you treat your guns like you treat your lawn mower, buy a Glock"


Bingo.
I clean mine after every range trip. Even my Glocks. I'm also the kind of guy that likes to keep rust off my tools and my truck clean when possible.

I don't buy into the whole "guns are like tools" thing that gets thrown around here either, and I'll tell you why. A gun is a heck of a lot more important than your power saw or claw hammer. Your gun stops working when you want it to because you neglected it, you can end up dead. Your power saw stops working because you neglected it, you can't cut that piece of plywood. Big difference.
A gun is in an entirely different category than "tools" IMHO, and while I do take care of my tools, the importance of taking care of my gun is in another league of importance altogether.

rbernie
February 3, 2009, 03:29 PM
I am much more concerned about fouling in the extractor and firing pin channel than I am verifying the function of a gun I just shot.Do you consider it likely that firing seven rounds will foul the extractor hook or firing pin channel?

mljdeckard
February 3, 2009, 03:47 PM
No. At the same time, I don't think it's LIKELY I will need to use my gun in a defensive situation, but I still carry one.

f4t9r
February 3, 2009, 04:04 PM
about every 200 rounds I clean it. That is because I can only afford to shoot 100 at a time.

Ala Dan
February 3, 2009, 05:03 PM
I too clean my weapons after each use; but I don't over do it~! Often
times, a lightly used weapon can be broken down and swabbed or bore
snaked, when using plated bullets. Then take a clean cloth rag and hit
the frame, slide, and magazine. Be sure too re-lube the weapons in
question, and you should be good too go~! :scrutiny: ;) :D

Liberty or Death 86
February 3, 2009, 08:28 PM
I clean my rifle every time I shoot it and that goes for my pistol as well. If I'm transporting either of them, I clean them before I leave. I also make sure my carry piece is in pristine condition.

VictorySong
February 3, 2009, 08:31 PM
As much as they cost I clean mine every time it is shot and once a month when it is in the safe. You should clean them ASAP really , prevents dirt from being caked on.

conan
February 3, 2009, 09:18 PM
I use to dread cleaning my guns. It always takes me 10 times longer than what other people say their time cleaning is. I put it off for 500 or even more rounds. My guns were filthy when it was time to clean them. So in a attempt to cut cleaning time I started cleaning every 200 rounds. It still takes me longer than what others say, but somewhere in the proccess I started to not mind it so much. I bought accessories to try to clean better. Somewhere it actualy became kind of fun. Then I thought why wear out your 1911's before there time? Now I clean them after every range time which is about 100-150 rounds. If that gun is not clean when I go to the range I only take one that is. I really, really love my 1911's, and want them to last forever, so now I clean them every range trip. They really do like to be lubed on a regular basis and all factory ammo that I have been shooting is dirty/filthy.

Bezoar
February 3, 2009, 09:54 PM
must clean guns, all guns need cleaning and lubrication. Wish a drill sergeant could answer this question for you. Then afterwords, the whole platoon would tell you their answer.
normally with fists ifyou were lucky. lock in a sock if you was unlucky. and most people are unlucky in the army.

Seriously, a dirty, uncleaned gun is like using a drug store condom thats a year past expiration date. it can be used, but you really wanna trust it?

mljdeckard
February 3, 2009, 11:39 PM
At the same time, I have seen MANY rifles, particularly in training units, that are loose, sloppy, and jiggly because they are stripped and cleaned more than they are fired. There is such a thing as overcleaning that can cause unnecessary wear and tear.

David E
February 3, 2009, 11:46 PM
Hell, I clean my 1911's every 1000 rounds or so, whether it needs it or not !

If my "serious gun" can't go 1000 rds without cleaning, then it doesn't stay my "serious gun" very long.

Ideally, after cleaning a gun used for defense, I like to put one magazine thru it, just to make sure everything was put back together correctly and to blow out any excess oil.

.

brisendines
February 3, 2009, 11:48 PM
I clean after every range trip, be it 10 rounds or 1000. Last time the gun was so dirty that the extractor was indistinguishable, but it still functioned every time. I don't worry so much about the grime making it not function, I worry much more about it damaging the gun permanently.

chieftain
February 4, 2009, 12:42 AM
At the same time, I have seen MANY rifles, particularly in training units, that are loose, sloppy, and jiggly because they are stripped and cleaned more than they are fired. There is such a thing as overcleaning that can cause unnecessary wear and tear.


Only when it is done improperly.

Yup, you will see that most often in training units. Take a guess about one of the things they are training those troops to do properly? Yup, take down, clean, inspect, maintain lubricate and maintain their weapons properly.


Hell, I clean my 1911's every 1000 rounds or so, whether it needs it or not !

Have a name for folks who carry a weapon for a living who do that, amateur.


If my "serious gun" can't go 1000 rds without cleaning, then it doesn't stay my "serious gun" very long.

It ainít about what the weapon can do, itís about what you are not doing. I have shot a 1000 round endurance match, but I break down, clean, inspect, maintain, lubricate and reassemble my weapons everytime I shoot them, and regularly if I don't shoot them.

My weapons have a reputation of "ALWAYS WORKING". Folks often comment on it.


Ideally, after cleaning a gun used for defense, I like to put one magazine thru it, just to make sure everything was put back together correctly and to blow out any excess oil.

Never seen a man die or get hurt because of a clean and maintained weapon. I have seen men die and get hurt because of dirty and unmaintained weapons.

I would Suggest you get good enough reassembling your weapon so you donít have to live fire to test it. Be good enough that you know it will work when you need it. That is what professionals do.

The only folks who should have to test fire weapons, are those that have had others work on them, or new weapons that are not proven. I will not carry a weapon for fighting that someone else has worked on until I shoot it too or if new until I put it through my own baptism of fire. That takes usually a minimum of 1300 rounds, if it works perfectly. It can be a lot more rounds if the new weapon does have issues. On one of my fighting weapons, if I did the work, it doesn't need to be test fired, I know it works.

Go figure.

Fred

CPshooter
February 4, 2009, 05:17 AM
if you dont want to clean your gun, buy a glockI think you meant to say if you don't want to clean your gun, buy a H&K:neener:

Seriously, just holding a freshly cleaned and lubed pistol makes me feel so good! Why wouldn't you want to clean them after every range session? Okay okay, I admit I've been lazy about it sometimes...but I still enjoy cleaning my handguns.

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