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720
06-15-2011, 5:44 PM
I'm a relatively new shotgun enthusiast, and I recently purchased a Remington 870P tactical shotgun and a Benelli M4. I've only shot these shotguns a couple times, and I was surprised at how filthy the 870P got after only shooting 30 or 40 shells. I was shooting Federal and Winchester #8 birdshot that I bought at walmart. The barrel was so filthy (black sooty crud and a lot of plastic residue) I had to use gun scrubber, a bore brush and dozens of patches to clean it up properly. I shot about 200 of the same shells through the Benelli M4 and it was not nearly as dirty as the 870P.

Does this make sense? Why would a pump get so much dirtier than the M4? Is there a better choice of shells that aren't as dirty as the shells I used? I can live with the soot, but the excessive plastic residue in the barrel (from the wads) is the biggest pain in the neck. It took a lot of gun scrubber and about 10 passes with the brass bore brush to get rid of that plastic residue throughout the barrel.

Any advise would be appreciated.
Thank you.

sargenv
06-15-2011, 6:03 PM
Cheap shells and a rougher, less well machined firearm = more grit deposited and a dirtier gun. Generally the target load shells (Rem STS or Winchester AA's) will be much cleaner but also more costly.. the trade-off is what you are willing to put up with.

Marlin Hunter
06-15-2011, 7:00 PM
... I've only shot these shotguns a couple times, and I was surprised at how filthy the 870P got after only shooting 30 or 40 shells. I was shooting Federal and Winchester #8 birdshot that I bought at walmart. The barrel was so filthy (black sooty crud and a lot of plastic residue) I had to use gun scrubber, a bore brush and dozens of patches to clean it up properly. I shot about 200 of the same shells through the Benelli M4 and it was not nearly as dirty as the 870P.

Does this make sense? Why would a pump get so much dirtier than the M4? ...

Any advise would be appreciated.
Thank you.


I can make a wild ***** guess. The shell in the pump gun stays there until the chamber pressure reaches zero. When the hot gasses exit the barrel of the pump gun there is a vacuum in the chamber which draws all the unburnt crud from inside the shell and deposits it in the barrel. In the auto shotgun, the bolt is opened when there is still some residual pressure in the chamber. Some of the pressure is used to cycle the bolt backwards. The pressure that is pushing the shell backwards is also keeping the crud inside the shell. I have no idea if that is what is happening. It is what I came up with just sitting here not thinking too hard. Check your shells and see if the auto shells are dirtier than the pump shells.

There are people on the shotgun boards that say each new shell cleans the crud from the barrel from the previous shot. These are people who shoot tens of thousands of shells every year. some of those guys only clean their guns every few months even though they shoot every weekend. The only thing they worry about is plastic fouling in the choke. Remove the choke and soak it in acetone or Goof-Off. Keep that stuff away from your wood or plastic stock. It melts wad plastic and it will melt your plastic stock or varnish finish

esskay
06-15-2011, 7:32 PM
Don't forget your Benelli M4 has a chrome-lined bore! Benellis are very easy to clean!

720
06-15-2011, 9:51 PM
thanks everybody for the advise and explanations. i appreciate that you took the time to pass on your knowledge on this topic. thanks again :)

Thefeeder
06-15-2011, 10:30 PM
^^^^^^ Just like they said

Just dirty shells.......the low cost shells tend to be dirty and the componets are low quality to keep cost down.......just clean more offen as your time is more or less free.

Option #2 buy better shells

BigDogatPlay
06-16-2011, 7:53 AM
Both Federal bulk and Winchester Universal are exceptionally dirty. The Winchester, when I've fired it (I had an 1100 that loved the stuff, go figure) always left the gun smelling somewhat like manure. Makes me wonder just what goes into the hopper when they mix the powder.

FWIW, the Remington bulk sport loads at Wal-Mart shoot a bit cleaner, at least for me. My O/U and my Mossberg 500 both run very well with them and not a lot of cleaning needed. You might also try Remington's "Gun Club" shells which seem to run cleaner still.

720
06-16-2011, 8:18 AM
i'll try Remington shells. The biggest "issue" for me (especially when shooting my 870P) is the amount of plastic residue left in the barrel after even a relatively small (30 or 40) shells. this stuff is not easy to get out of the barrel. i'm assuming it's the plastic wads. maybe different shell manufacturers use different types of plastic for their wads? maybe some plastic wads leave more residue than others? better yet, if there were some shells that used something other than plastic wads i'd sure like to try those shells :)

repubconserv
06-16-2011, 11:08 AM
winchester is possibly the dirtiest shot-shell you can buy at Wal-Mart, Federal runs a close second, and remington is next.... though they all get things dirty.

I find that Rem. and Federal leave little plastic buildup as compared to winchester. Whenever I shoot bulk Win. I have to scrub all the plastic out of my barrel after each time I go shooting. I am now through ~700 rds of federal since my last cleaning, and still not much plastic (maybe that is just me, find out what works best for you and have fun)

aippi
06-16-2011, 11:40 AM
It is very easy to get out. Do it all the time. Go to www.aiptactical.com and click on the red link "Install and cleaning". Make a polishing rod like on that page. Use it every time you clean the barrel. Run it through dry and it picks up all that mess. Watch the color of the steel wool and you will know when to change it.

compulsivegunbuyer
06-16-2011, 2:04 PM
I used to care, but now I have shot my 870 thousands of rounds without cleaning it. It's a shotgun. I don't think plastic fouling has much of an effect on it. I have not noticed any difference in the pattern.

720
06-16-2011, 6:54 PM
yeah, you're lucky to feel this way. you'll probably live to be at least 100 :) but i'm a little bit OCD, and i just can't rest knowing my guns are dirty. LOL.

720
06-16-2011, 6:59 PM
i'm going to try this on my 870 because it really gets gunked up with plastic residue that is very hard to remove. i have to use gun scrubber (that stuff is nasty) AND a bore brush and a lots of patches to clean the barrel. i don't mind jerry-rigging a dowel with 000 steel wool especially if it will remove that damn plastic crud without strong chemicals!

It is very easy to get out. Do it all the time. Go to www.aiptactical.com and click on the red link "Install and cleaning". Make a polishing rod like on that page. Use it every time you clean the barrel. Run it through dry and it picks up all that mess. Watch the color of the steel wool and you will know when to change it.