For Beginners: Maintaining Your Gun *

* Please read the Disclaimer below!


Maintaining your weapon is the most important thing you can do to make sure of a smooth operating gun.  Before you get started, however, remember …

Safety First

  • Make sure any weapon is unloaded before starting the cleaning process.
  • Follow the directions exactly on every bottle in your cleaning kit
  • Wear protective gear, even if it makes you look like a space alien. (Better to be thought a space alien than to damage your eyesight or spend an evening in the emergency room!)

Why & When to Clean a Gun

Do you have to clean a gun each-and-every time you use it?  Perhaps.  It depends on how much gunk remains in the gun after shooting and how fastidious you are.

It is easier to remove the crud in your gun before it  ‘sets up like concrete!’  Poorly cleaned or dirty firearms are not reliable.

While hunting, we never know who or what we will meet.  If you come upon a rattlesnake – about to strike, or a mountain lion – ready to leap towards you, this is no time to have a gun that binds up or refuses to feed or eject a spent casing.

You clean a firearm to

  • protect your investment (in your gun) and
  • to have a weapon ready when you are!

Everything else is window dressing!

A Gun Cleaning Kit

Sporting goods stores offer a variety of gun cleaning kits.   If you are new to the task, selecting a good cleaning kit may seem like a daunting task.

Most kits have far more “stuff” than you need.  Generally speaking, any cleaning kit that has “premium” in its title is probably over-kill.

After reading this summary, you will have a very good idea of the number of products you really need to complete the task of cleaning a gun.

Before We Start

I will describe one way to clean a weapon … it is not the only way.  If you have learned the process using a different method … fine!

We have one goal:  We want an absolutely reliable gun. How we reach that goal is less important  than being sure that we do reach that goal!


This Series:

  • General Cleaning;
  • After Storage;
  • Field Care of Your Weapon


Disclaimer: The author of this information has made a good-faith effort to give accurate directions and advice.  However, she makes no guarantees, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any information offered here.


This blog is a companion to my website:

Published in: on January 6, 2010 at 1:39 am  Comments Off on For Beginners: Maintaining Your Gun *