IN THE GUN ROOM • spring Cleaning
it Working, Keep it Clean
you fire a gun, you in effect create a small fire in the chamber.
This fire creates the required pressure to propel the shot load
but an unwanted side product of this fire is soot. There are two
unwanted “googies” which are created by the passage
of the shot and plastic wad down the barrel: plastic fouling and
If these residues are left in the barrels corrosion and poor patterns
The corrosion caused by the plastic fouling creates a layer the length
of the barrel under which the combination of un-burnt powder (soot)
and condensation is trapped. Lead build-up, particularly at the muzzles,
can increase the degree of choke present in the gun and if a non-concentric
build-up occurs, it will disrupt patterns.
So, not only to protect your investment but also to maintain its
performance, you need to clean your gun after every outing.
What is required is a simple but
effective routine. First, if the gun is wet, do not place it in
a gun slip or case- wipe it off with
a paper towel or rag and allow it to breathe. It is amazing how
a gun that looks dry, will weep moisture several hours later. It
good to leave the gun to stand in an ambient temperature for a
few hours before cleaning.
like to keep a bore snake and a silicone rag in my shooting bag,
the gun off after use, and run the snake through it before placing
it in its case for transport home. This removes the obvious
fouling and sweaty marks.
At home, I break the gun down into its component parts and beginning with the
barrels, remove the choke tubes, if fitted, placing them in a jar of solvent.I
then spray a squirt of solvent cleaner into each barrel to soften up the soot,
lead and plastic fouling. Placing the barrels to one side to allow that to begin
its work, I turn my attention to the action. I clean out any foreign bodies and
un-burnt powder and wipe off the interior and exterior and finally give it a
coating of quality oil. This is repeated with the forend iron.
I like to wipe off the woodwork, brush out the chequering with a stiff brush
and apply a small dab of boiled linseed or proprietary stock oil, massaging it
with the palm of my hand into the finish by the heat generated. Be sparing -
it is amazing how far a drop of stock oil will go! Be sure to keep it out of
the chequering and before putting the gun away, examine for any surplus, and
buff this off. (A piece of chamois leather and a sprinkle of rotten stone will
remove both excessive dried oil and any small scratches and marks). Every month
I apply a little stock wax.
I then take a bronze
brush and repeatedly scrub each barrel. Using jags or small pieces
of kitchen towel; I pass these through the bores until all residue
is removed and they are clean and bright. Turning my attention to
the outside, I use a feather to clean under the ribs (it is always
a good idea to have solid ribs on a field gun). I clean the threads
of the choke tubes (if fitted, internal). (Scrub the choke tubes
in the same manner as the barrels). Last, I put a smear of gun grease
on the threads and re-install. Clean out the ejectors and extractors,
then give both the inside and out side of the barrels a light coat
Placing a smear of gun grease on the knuckle and lugs of the action, I r-assemble
the gun. I personally like to store my guns muzzle down in the safe. This way,
the oil in the barrels cannot capillary down and through the striker holes and
into the action and the head of the stock, as when the gun is stored barrels
Keep a golden rod in the safe, to avoid the condensation inevitable with living
in the South.
When you next take the gun out, be sure to run a jag through the bores to remove
the excess oil before use.
Have the gun stripped, cleaned and examined annually, to check for any wear and
tear that is not apparent without taking the gun apart. The best way to keep
your gun working, is to keep it clean!
We have known Doug
Roberson, owner of McGregor Wing and Clay in Cary, North Carolina
for some time and when he recommends a product, as the old ad used
to say, we listen!
We recently saw him at a shoot in South Carolina and when we asked
him the rhetorical question “What’s new?” he surprised
us with his enthusiastic reply…”CLENZOIL!”
We asked him to tell us about his “new” product, which
has actually been around, as many of its fans already know, since
1948. Here’s what he sent us: (We bought a bottle right away,
From Doug Roberson:
If you have never used or even heard of
Clenzoil, you are in for a pleasant surprise. For those of you who have tried
it and are
not completely sold on the product please drop me a line to say so. I
have yet to find someone who uses Clenzoil and does not love it.
Clenzoil is the ultimate cleaning, lubricant and rust prevention
solution for fine firearms. Christian Lenz invented Clenzoil in
1948, to be used on both metal and wood surfaces.
To use, just
squeeze an ample amount on a soft cloth or lamb’s wool and
wipe down your entire gun. It’s amazing the way Clenzoil effectively removes
built-up oils, dirt and other contaminants leaving a clean, fully-lubricated
and rust-free gun. You’ll be surprised to see the “gunk” on
your wipe-down rag after using it on what you thought was a basically clean firearm.
It doesn’t build up or get gummy with age, either.
It also protects
and conditions fine leather products… try in on your “old” leather
cases and cartridge bags. One bottle will last the average shooter
more than a year.
Clenzoil endorsers read like the Who’s Who list of shooting sportsmen,
military branches and firearm manufacturers. I, personally, use nothing other
than Clenzoil to wipe down all my fine firearms after shooting and handling… I
cannot recommend it more highly!”
If you would like to purchase a bottle Clenzoil, send a check for $15.00 with
your shipping information to Doug Roberson at MacGregor Wing & Clay,
107 Edinburgh South, Suite 209, Cary, NC 27511 or phone (919) 388-5888 or