Stupid rifle questions


July 21, 2010, 07:13 PM
k guys. I have been going through these manuals about 3 or 4 times. This is the first new rifle I have had to work with.

One instruction on here:
For the first 25 rounds, clean the chamber and bore after every round
After that every 10 for the first 100 rounds.

First, what difference does that make? Anyone take a guess on that?

Second, for those type of directions, how in depth a cleaning would they be talking about? You imagine they run a patch or two down the barrel after each shot? Or tear it down, and full clean after each shot?

I imagine this is sort of like breaking in an engine, just want to make sure I do this right. So thoughts?

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Uncle Mike
July 21, 2010, 07:40 PM
Search 'Breaking in Rifle Barrels' on the net, you'll find some excellent articles from McMillan, Lilja and many other mainline barrel manufacturers....and, you will find that each has their own idealistic views on the process of barrel break-in.

Some folks believe it is a 'must do' type thing, still others are comfortable with 'just shooting' their new barrel.

I have done both, and with exception to some of the more expensive F-Class and long range stuff I generally use the 'just shoot it' method, cleaning after every 'range session'.

For the run of the mill production rifle, this process has worked well for me and many, many others!

It is said that the lesser quality barrels often found on main line production rifles will benefit from the 'shoot one round, clean' method due to the horrid roughness of the bore...I'll not comment on that one!

You may want to fire a few rounds and then run a copper solvent soaked patch or two through the barrel, followed by a couple wiper/dryer patches and see IF your barrel is fouling badly...a LOT of green on the patches, or if you require 'many' solvent soaked patches before the green fades, if so, you may want to use the 'shoot one round, clean after that round' method until it all settles down.

I generally don't do that, but you might!

I shot with a fellow that used to say "if I have to break in this [insert barrel manufacture name here] barrel, guess I need to buy better quality, it shouldn't need any breaking in"!

You'll see many a different view from the guys and gals here, none which are in error, none which are cast in stone!

Read up on the process, cruise some firearm forums, decipher the data you gather and form your own opinion.

And remember, an opinion is just that, an is neither right or wrong, nor can you successfully argue with it, it is just an opinion!

July 21, 2010, 08:18 PM
lol. Yeah, well thanks for not sending me to LMGTFY. I started doing some better searches and quickly found what I was looking for. I went out and grabbed some better solvent and figure I will give it a go tomorrow. Should be a good time either way.

Not only is it my first New rifle, it is my first AR model so I am pretty stoked to get it out there and have some fun.

July 21, 2010, 08:35 PM
others are comfortable with 'just shooting' their new barrel. I'm in this camp.

Uncle Mike
July 21, 2010, 08:41 PM
Did you say...AR Barrel? Most AR's have a chromed bore and chamber, if yours is like this, there will be NO break-in happen, or required for that fact!

July 21, 2010, 08:59 PM
It is actually a chrome-moly steel heavy barrel. The manufacturer instructions call for a breaking in. They are just vague as to what they mean by clean (wipe out vs break down and full out clean). Now that I have a good grasp on what the break in is for. makes sense.

July 22, 2010, 12:26 AM
So...if you clean after each shot for the advised number of shots, is it good to do the 'barrel lapping" with those special bullets? I've never tried this, I'm just wondering if that would be the next step.


Al Mack 1
July 22, 2010, 01:38 AM
Just clean the bore. The for the break in is to smooth out the rough spots. If you do this it will be easer to clean later. I did it on my LR 308 and I still can't get over how quick it cleans up. Have fun and be safe.

July 22, 2010, 04:33 AM
+1 Al Mack 1

they dont mean a totaly tear down they just mean the bore,

method i use

1.brass brush 1 pass down and up per shot taken
2.slovent patches ( i use 2-3 pass each pass with a new patch with solvent)
3. dry pach (2-3 for the above mentioned)
4 shoot and repeat

( DO NOT work the patches back and forth) patches collect grit and grime from the bore, mostly carbon and small copper flakes and repeted back and forth motion of the patch and be like sand paper.

again thats how i do it and what i believe works best. also after 30-40 rounds even with clean i like to use shooters choice copper desolver to get rid of copper fowling

July 22, 2010, 08:41 AM
The bore should be cleaned so all the copper fouling is removed from the lands and grooves. The idea of barrel break-in is that the bullet passing through the bore will smooth out the rough spots. If the rough spots are filled with copper fouling when the bullet passes over them, there will be no benefit.

July 22, 2010, 09:38 AM
Here is Krieger's take on breaking and cleaning, process and rationale:


Uncle Mike
July 22, 2010, 10:29 AM
And the venerable Gale McMillan's thoughts on barrel break

Two totally different views on the process.....

I'll venture to say that Gale must have been talking about fine, well made, ultra smooth finished bore, barrels and not your basic production rifle barrel. Just a thought!

July 22, 2010, 10:50 AM
Those instructions seem a bit excessive for a production AR to me. I'm with the others who subscribe to the 'Tear it down first, give it a thorough clean and lube, then shoot away' camp.

If you were benchrest shooting a gazillion dollar rifle it would be different, but to an AR, even a high end one, can't see it would make a lot of difference.

July 22, 2010, 11:01 AM
I feel it is the same as with Harley Davidson buyers. How should I break in my bike. Answer. Ride it like you stole it.
I just shoot my guns, and keep the maintenance up. Same as with my bikes. Ride the mess out of the, and then keep up the maintenance.
I do not adhere to the barrel break in. Shoot it. Clean it. Find a round that works well, and stick to it.

July 22, 2010, 11:24 AM
Break in for a new AR? Shoot the hell out of it. That'll break it in just fine.

If you decide to do the break in, make sure you don't forget the hopping on your right foot for ten seconds each time you swab the bore with cleaning fluid. This will help the cleaning fluid "smooth out" the bore and somehow magically make it easier to clean and even more accurate, even though (for some reason) the factory was too stupid to do this for you in the first place. :rolleyes:

Have fun with the new rifle!

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