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duckman1
04-09-2012, 12:44 PM
I used the search and could not find threads specific to cleaning.

AR is complete, been to the range and have run about 100 rounds thru it. At what point to you break it down and clean it? I have watched the You Tube videos and it seem pretty straight forward and not a great deal different than cleaning my Browning Gold Shotgun.

Do you field clean it each time? Do you completely disassemble the bolt each time?

After a couple of thousand rounds? Once a month?

I have rods and brushes (corect for caliber) for my bolt action rifles I assume they'll work for my AR.

I can see how this could become addictive.

dougolupski
04-09-2012, 12:48 PM
Well I can only speak for myself. I put about 300 rounds down the pipe between Friday and Saturday and I yanked the BCG and pulled the bolt out and gave it a quick wipe then cleaned the upper and swabbed the barrel. With a Direct Impingement system the longer you leave the carbon in there the harder it is to get out. I spent 20 min on mine and I g2g for the next trip.

nocomply25
04-09-2012, 12:57 PM
I like to wipe down and oil up after every time at the range by doing it this way i have never had to do any crazy cleaning to the gun. I know it sounds anal but it is just a good habit to form i do it with all my guns. The guns can run a long time without cleaning but its better to not let things build up so that you can limit the use of harsh cleaners in the future.

Omega13device
04-09-2012, 2:52 PM
I let mine go 1000-2000 rounds between cleaning because I'm lazy. I lube it before every trip to the range though. It's not any harder to clean, it just takes longer because there's more gunk.

Don't succumb to the idea that you need to rub and scrape every last bit of carbon from the rifle. Guess what, the first round you put through it makes it dirty again. If they only worked when they were clean they'd never work. The idea that guns need to be spotless is a myth.

Schlyme
04-09-2012, 3:03 PM
you tube has some videos about it. thats what i used as a reference

dougolupski
04-09-2012, 3:05 PM
The idea that guns need to be spotless is a myth.

True that. My Glock 17 regulary gets 1500 rounds through it before cleaning but its still way cleaner than my AR after 300 rounds. I dont mind doing the quick strip and wipe. Your right though dont obsess over every little bit of carbon.

AeroEngi
04-09-2012, 3:38 PM
I let mine go 1000-2000 rounds between cleaning because I'm lazy. I lube it before every trip to the range though. It's not any harder to clean, it just takes longer because there's more gunk.

Don't succumb to the idea that you need to rub and scrape every last bit of carbon from the rifle. Guess what, the first round you put through it makes it dirty again. If they only worked when they were clean they'd never work. The idea that guns need to be spotless is a myth.

This!

Intimid8tor
04-09-2012, 3:41 PM
There's a lot of different schools of thought and arguments on why any one of them is the right one. Some will clean every range trip, some every few range trips, some every few thousand rounds and some never.

I personally clean any firearm after it is shot. If I don't shoot it much it might be a light cleaning. If it is a lot it will be more detailed.

I do this for 2 reasons. First, that is what I was taught. Second, I might not shoot that particular firearm again for a year. I don't want it to sit with stuff in it for a year.

wsmc27
04-09-2012, 5:17 PM
Article from a few years back I've seen a few times over the years. Might be interesting to some?

S.W.A.T. MAGAZINE
KEEP YOUR CARBINE RUNNING
Dispelling Lubrication and Cleaning Myths
By Patrick A. Rogers
http://www.slip2000.com/art-swat.html

rero360
04-09-2012, 5:22 PM
I'm going to run my carbine for about 10K before I clean it unless I start to get malfunctions, which I doubt (thats one of the perks of buying quality) or if I get bored. Seriously, just lube the darn thing and shoot it.

FX-05 Xiuhcoatl
04-09-2012, 5:29 PM
here you go http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cdBiZfv1jSs

Jonesy72
04-09-2012, 5:29 PM
clean mine every other range trip. generally about 250 rounds a trip.

adrenalinejunkie
04-09-2012, 5:34 PM
When I'm not going to the range more than once in a month, i'll clean it after every trip. The rare amazing times where i'll be shooting 6 or 7 times in a month i'll save the cleaning until after the last trip and just oil it between range trips, or every 500 rounds or so.

I always separate the upper from the lower, clean the chamber and bore with a chamber brush and bore snake, oil the barrel, strip the BCG to its bare components, clean and oil them, clean and residue off the inside of the upper and lower/magwell, and oil the trigger/hammer/buffer springs. I use gun oil and not grease because I think grease just attracts too much debris and a good gun oil won't rub off without some prolonged use. When I take my time with it it takes around 15 minutes.

Put it all back together, function check it, and you're good to go.

Where in CA are you located? I'd be happy to come by and go through the cleaning process if that'd help and you're close enough haha.

milotrain
04-09-2012, 6:11 PM
I shoot every saturday around 100 rounds. I clean my AR after each session. Usually the same day, sometimes the day after.

1. Pull the BCG, disassemble it and stick it in a ziplock with CLP
2. Shoot Birchwood casey gel foam in the barrel and stick it upright with a rag under the muzzle (flash hider protects the crown).
3. After 15 min or so I run a bronze brush down it, unscrew the brush pull the rod and do it again. I do this 1 time for each 10 shots, so 10 times usually.
4. Clean the bronze brush
5. Wrap the brush with a patch, hit it with a little Kroil run it through the barrel, remove the brush. Do this until I get a clean patch.
6. Wrap the brush with a patch, soak it with Kroil, run it through.
7. Take the BCG out of the bag, rag it off, re-lube it with CLP, reassemble it and stick it back in the upper.

Put it away. Tops this is 20min, usually less. Much shorter if I shoot the gel into the barrel before I leave the range.

Some notes:
The Dewey rods are worth their weight in gold.
Buy bags of bronze brushes, not singles. They go fast.
You don't need a jag because you can wrap the brush in the patch.
Cotton patches are worth 10x more than paper patches, luckily they are not much more expensive.
Take care of the crown, take care of the crown, take care of the crown. Long live the Queen.

CHS
04-09-2012, 7:30 PM
Proper lubrication is A MILLION TIMES more important than any amount of cleaning.

Properly lubricated, an AR will go for literally thousands and thousands of rounds. A .22lr will usually go around 2000-3000(max) with proper lubrication before needing a real cleaning.

However, if you are getting any kinds of malfunctions the first thing to do is strip everything down and give it a good and proper detail cleaning AND THEN properly lubricate everything. Begin your troubleshooting at that. But if things are running well, just lubricate it and either don't clean it, or clean it when you feel like it.

Cleaning doesn't help a gun run any better (except for .22lr's) as long as you keep it properly lubricated.

Blasian6
04-09-2012, 8:39 PM
I would think that all moving, metal on metal parts should be lubed, but does that include breaking down the bolt assembly and lubing all of those parts too?

Is there any parts that I should be cautious about cleaning/lubing?

Carbine AR

TNP'R
04-09-2012, 8:47 PM
I clean mine after every range trip, not because it needs it but because I like cleaning my AR-15.

Sonic_mike
04-09-2012, 8:55 PM
I clean mine after every range trip, not because it needs it but because I like cleaning my AR-15.

WORD http://t0.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcTSzhhGF9onxVfGF0OZAoXAeK2JTGpNl qW3AuK56nibsqONoMLGb_h0iQbtVA

reidnez
04-09-2012, 9:05 PM
I would think that all moving, metal on metal parts should be lubed, but does that include breaking down the bolt assembly and lubing all of those parts too?

Is there any parts that I should be cautious about cleaning/lubing?

Carbine AR

Don't lube the fire control group (FCG) for safety reasons. It normally doesn't get really dirty, anyway; a dry brush should suffice.

The buffer and buffer spring don't need lube, and again, don't normally get very dirty. I don't even bother pulling mine very often, though it is part of the official field-strip. Wiping both down with a dry rag is enough.

I like to use high-temp automotive bearing grease for the bolt carrier and the portion of the upper receiver where it rides; it stays put much better than CLP, the latter tending to dry out and migrate over time. You can grease a rifle and put it away for a long time, and it will still be greased when you need it.

As far as "breaking down the bolt"...all you need to do for regular maintenance is separate the bolt from the carrier, clean and lube both.

I like cleaning guns, for some reason it relaxes me, so I do a good cleaning after most range trips. But this really isn't required. As others have mentioned and I have experienced, a quality AR will run a long time between cleanings as long as it's kept well-lubed.

CHS
04-09-2012, 10:23 PM
Don't lube the fire control group (FCG) for safety reasons. It normally doesn't get really dirty, anyway; a dry brush should suffice.


Disagree. You really should have a decent grease on the sear surfaces in the fire control group: Disconnector hook, hammer hook, trigger sear, hammer sear

Also, a DROP or less of oil on each FCG pin.


As far as "breaking down the bolt"...all you need to do for regular maintenance is separate the bolt from the carrier, clean and lube both.


MAKE SURE that you're lubing the gas rings on the bolt. This is one of the critical lubrication points for the AR15 platform.

Scott Connors
04-09-2012, 10:27 PM
Article from a few years back I've seen a few times over the years. Might be interesting to some?

S.W.A.T. MAGAZINE
KEEP YOUR CARBINE RUNNING
Dispelling Lubrication and Cleaning Myths
By Patrick A. Rogers
http://www.slip2000.com/art-swat.html

+1. Check out also this thread: http://www.m4carbine.net/showthread.php?t=35490

jcslone
04-09-2012, 10:39 PM
It really all comes down to personal preference as well as the quality of the components in your rifle. For me, I always clean my rifle to inspection-readiness after I shoot (old habits). I typically use BreakFree CLP, a bore snake, can of compressed air, and a standard AR-15 .223-5.56 cleaning kit and baby wipes. You really don't need much more than that for standard cleaning. I always fully take apart my BCG (removing the extractor), and clean every speck of gunk offa it (again, old habits). From experience I know you can run several hundred (if not a couple thousand) rounds through a decent AR before you run into issues. Best advice I can give you is to research your rifle, read what other owners have to say about maintaining it, and never let the carbon build up too much (it only gets harder to remove with time).

Happy shootin'!

jcslone
04-09-2012, 10:39 PM
It really all comes down to personal preference as well as the quality of the components in your rifle. For me, I always clean my rifle to inspection-readiness after I shoot (old habits). I typically use BreakFree CLP, a bore snake, can of compressed air, and a standard AR-15 .223-5.56 cleaning kit and baby wipes. You really don't need much more than that for standard cleaning. I always fully take apart my BCG (removing the extractor), and clean every speck of gunk offa it (again, old habits). From experience I know you can run several hundred (if not a couple thousand) rounds through a decent AR before you run into issues. Best advice I can give you is to research your rifle, read what other owners have to say about maintaining it, and never let the carbon build up too much (it only gets harder to remove with time).

Happy shootin'!

TNP'R
04-09-2012, 10:49 PM
It really all comes down to personal preference as well as the quality of the components in your rifle. For me, I always clean my rifle to inspection-readiness after I shoot (old habits). I typically use BreakFree CLP, a bore snake, can of compressed air, and a standard AR-15 .223-5.56 cleaning kit and baby wipes. You really don't need much more than that for standard cleaning. I always fully take apart my BCG (removing the extractor), and clean every speck of gunk offa it (again, old habits). From experience I know you can run several hundred (if not a couple thousand) rounds through a decent AR before you run into issues. Best advice I can give you is to research your rifle, read what other owners have to say about maintaining it, and never let the carbon build up too much (it only gets harder to remove with time).

Happy shootin'!

I find that q-tips are good at getting in the hard to reach spots.

jcslone
04-09-2012, 10:58 PM
I find that q-tips are good at getting in the hard to reach spots.

oooh good point! forgot about that one...those things are a godsend

shadowofnight
04-10-2012, 7:43 AM
Normal range session 400 rounds

Full strip and clean every 3rd range trip so make that 1,200 rounds

Simple bore snake pass x 2 after every range session

One tiny dab of trigger grease on the FCG and BreakFreeCLP on all other moving/mated parts EVERY range trip.

It's really very easy to keep the AR happy, takes less than 3 minutes to do all mentioned between full strip and cleans at 1,200 rounds.

peter95
04-10-2012, 8:42 AM
I clean after every 2 range trips... but that's because I put about 500-600 rounds everytime I go. BLM only.

Even at those times, The AR still seems pretty darn clean.

If you use cheap ammo, clean it right after...

SR-71 BLACKBIRD
04-10-2012, 8:52 AM
OP here is a good read for ya:

Keep it running (http://www.ar15.com/content/swat/keepitrunning.pdf)

I myself clean after every range trip only because my gun safe is so close to my bathroom upstairs that the moisture from the shower rusts my guns if I don't clean them right away. So I have to make sure the barrels are well oiled and I need to use those desiccant anti moisture packets.

Cheers

Army
04-10-2012, 1:10 PM
I've one AR that has not been cleaned for at least 15 years. Lubed before a range session, then back in the case. Zero troubles.

Cleaning tip: Never use Q-tips. Use pipe cleaners instead. I lost count of how many rifles have been deadlined from Q-tips stuck in, and broken off in; the gas key, gas tube, bolt stem, hammer/trigger pin holes, hammer pin tunnel, and a few jumbo Q-tips in the barrel.

CHS
04-10-2012, 2:27 PM
Cleaning tip: Never use Q-tips. Use pipe cleaners instead. I lost count of how many rifles have been deadlined from Q-tips stuck in, and broken off in; the gas key, gas tube, bolt stem, hammer/trigger pin holes, hammer pin tunnel, and a few jumbo Q-tips in the barrel.

If you're sticking ANYTHING in the gas tube, you're doing it wrong :)

cqbdude
04-10-2012, 3:48 PM
Ammo is too expesive to shoot in my AR's.
I dont shoot them so they stay clean..:D

Johnnyfres
04-10-2012, 10:58 PM
You guys are hilarious.

I just throw mine in the bath tub with me every night. Give it a good rubbing with bubble bath soap dry her off and shes good to go.

SR-71 BLACKBIRD
04-11-2012, 1:03 AM
You guys are hilarious.

I just throw mine in the bath tub with me every night. Give it a good rubbing with bubble bath soap dry her off and shes good to go.

LOL

Mail Clerk
04-11-2012, 6:23 AM
I used the search and could not find threads specific to cleaning.

AR is complete, been to the range and have run about 100 rounds thru it. At what point to you break it down and clean it? I have watched the You Tube videos and it seem pretty straight forward and not a great deal different than cleaning my Browning Gold Shotgun.

Do you field clean it each time? Do you completely disassemble the bolt each time?

After a couple of thousand rounds? Once a month?

I have rods and brushes (corect for caliber) for my bolt action rifles I assume they'll work for my AR.

I can see how this could become addictive.

duckman,

I always break down/field strip my rifles for cleaning after every shooting secession. Every time your fire the rifle you deminish reliability of the firearm slightly of each trigger pull. Remember your bolt/carrier is the heart of the AR so keep it clean.

Mail Clerk:oji:

duckman1
04-11-2012, 7:27 AM
Thank you all.

First off I believe that a clean gun makes it a reliable gun. With your help and You Tube I have been able to find quite a few videos that make it look pretty easy to clean. My major concern was how often to clean and I think you pretty much answered the question with "it depends" and I can live with that.

CHS
04-11-2012, 11:50 AM
Remember your bolt/carrier is the heart of the AR so keep it clean lubricated.


Fixed it for you.

rero360
04-11-2012, 12:47 PM
Thank you all.

First off I believe that a clean gun makes it a reliable gun. With your help and You Tube I have been able to find quite a few videos that make it look pretty easy to clean. My major concern was how often to clean and I think you pretty much answered the question with "it depends" and I can live with that.

Guess the BCM filthy 14 doesn't know its not supposed to be reliable because it hasn't been cleaned, over 31,000 rounds so far without issues.

TNP'R
04-11-2012, 12:57 PM
Guess the BCM filthy 14 doesn't know its not supposed to be reliable because it hasn't been cleaned, over 31,000 rounds so far without issues.

There are always exceptions to the rule when it comes to cleaning rifles. A clean gun is always a good thing. I can't imagine there would be anything bad about cleaning a bolt carrier group.

The point is your rifle may go thousands of rounds with out cleaning that's all well and good but in general a dirty gun can lead to malfunctions that's why I clean my ar-15 and other rifles a lot. It may not need it and it may not malfunction from not cleaning but i'm taking malfunctions due to lack of cleaning off the table when I clean my firearms. To me eliminating problems before they happen is a big thing.

CHS
04-11-2012, 1:24 PM
There are always exceptions to the rule when it comes to cleaning rifles. A clean gun is always a good thing. I can't imagine there would be anything bad about cleaning a bolt carrier group.

You keep saying "clean" but I don't think you know what that means.

When it comes to the AR, clean doesn't mean jack or squat. Lubricated properly is a billion times more important to cleanliness.

TNP'R
04-11-2012, 1:31 PM
You keep saying "clean" but I don't think you know what that means.

When it comes to the AR, clean doesn't mean jack or squat. Lubricated properly is a billion times more important to cleanliness.

When I say clean I mean clean and lubricate. You honestly think id clean an ar-15 and not lubricate it wtf lmao :rolleyes: and yes cleaning does help but I guess peoples never had malfunctions due to lack of cleaning before I guess the soldiers in nam were lying..

Army
04-11-2012, 1:32 PM
The point is your rifle may go thousands of rounds with out cleaning that's all well and good but in general a dirty gun can lead to malfunctions that's why I clean my ar-15 and other rifles a lot. It may not need it and it may not malfunction from not cleaning but i'm taking malfunctions due to lack of cleaning off the table when I clean my firearms. To me eliminating problems before they happen is a big thing.
Too much cleaning can do as much damage as firing. Pulling pins out repeatedly will enlarge receiver holes. Excessive barrel scrubbing can add unneeded wear to the rifling, and is more likely to damage the muzzle crown.

WIPE off the gunk, lube it, forget it.

White glove cleaning is a holdover from the corrosive ammo days...no longer needed.

CHS
04-11-2012, 1:45 PM
When I say clean I mean clean and lubricate. You honestly think id clean an ar-15 and not lubricate it

I dunno, with all the talk about cleaning no one's mentioning proper lubrication. And I mean PROPER lubrication, not just wiping down the surfaces with a light oil to prevent rust, which is what I see most people do when they "clean".

Cleaning is not really necessary. It really isn't. You keep saying that cleaning "helps" or cleaning "is important", but that's just wrong. Cleaning very rarely helps as long as the firearm is properly lubricated.

and yes cleaning does help but I guess peoples never had malfunctions due to lack of cleaning before I guess the soldiers in nam were lying..

If you think the AR15 of today is ANYTHING like the AR15 of Vietnam, or the ammo is the same today as it was then, well then you don't know much about the platform and its history.

the86d
04-11-2012, 1:45 PM
I usually clean carbon from everywhere I can and use Medica cotton-tipped swabs (MFR # 362, SALON I get real cheap) the same weekend, or the weekend after going out.

I do not get them as clean as the Armorers wanted me to back when I was required to, but I get real close... I have a spare unused BCG, and another Nickel-Boron BCG, so I can swap that if SHTF... 2x. :)

TNP'R
04-11-2012, 1:54 PM
I dunno, with all the talk about cleaning no one's mentioning proper lubrication. And I mean PROPER lubrication, not just wiping down the surfaces with a light oil to prevent rust, which is what I see most people do when they "clean".

Cleaning is not really necessary. It really isn't. You keep saying that cleaning "helps" or cleaning "is important", but that's just wrong. Cleaning very rarely helps as long as the firearm is properly lubricated.



If you think the AR15 of today is ANYTHING like the AR15 of Vietnam, or the ammo is the same today as it was then, well then you don't know much about the platform and its history.

Ok so it's an ak-47? Right? Also I don't know about you but when I clean a gun I always lubricate it. That's the way i've always done it, is there people out there that just cleans and doesn't lubricate?? And I don't know how you lubricate or any one else lubricates their firearms but I personally don't just wipe them down with a light coat of oil for storage I oil them the way I always do because I shoot them.