View Full Version : Maintenance: Push or pull the cleaning rod?

January 07, 2001, 20:56
I am interested to find out if there is any difference in effectiveness of cleaning by using a pull through bore snake or the like, or the use of a dewey rod and guide. After years of using those crappy three piece rods I always fear damaging my bore yet I want to get it really clean.

January 07, 2001, 21:10
Use a one piece rod. (listen to me. I use a three piec sectional rod. Just to lazy to get a Dewey I guess!) Be sure to run the rod through the CHAMBER end of the gun. I have never seen a patch come out completely white no matter how many I run through. I suspect it has something to do with the chrome lined barrell. I have cleaned my AR15 many, many times and always have some black on the patch. Same thing with the rest of the guns I have that are chromed lined. Look in the barrell and they are clean. http://www.fnfal.com/forums/confused.gif Don't know. Just get it as clean as you can!

[This message has been edited by gunnut1 (edited January 07, 2001).]

January 07, 2001, 21:12
You will damage your bore. A little at a time. I would also caution you to clean your bore from the breach end, whenever possible so as to not abrade the crown and risk damage.

Get a one-piece rod, if you can, and use it. Mine is plastic coated so as to keep metal from metal and you don't have the sharp joints in the rod to abrade the lands and crown.

January 07, 2001, 21:16
I have a dewey one piece rod and do clean from breach end but that snake is so damn easy and I cant imagine it doing any damage( no metal to metal contact)does it clean as well though?

January 07, 2001, 21:42
Metal to metal observations,
I read and been told by some smiths that
the plastic coated rods will become impregnated with grit over time and that can hurt your bore (the same with an alluminum rod) I read and been told that a stainless still rod will not pick up grit and is best,
that is what I use, I guess only time will tell me personally what is best and I bet it will take a long time.:0
On the bolt guns I use a chamber guide that is made with a case for the caliber, though the chamber guide does not fit the FN
I still use the case as the guide and agian work from the chamber.

January 07, 2001, 22:05
I have heard of people cutting a grove in the muzzle with a pull through. I have never seen this but it kinda makes sense. Besides, if you are cleaning at home then why not use a rod? I have several pull throughs that I take to the range but at home, I use my rod.
BTW: please don't be offended by the comment I made in my first post. "(listen to me...)" I was fussing at my self and not you or anybody else. http://www.fnfal.com/forums/wink.gif

January 07, 2001, 23:08
Gunut 1, that groove is known as cord wear. You can see it on older weapons like Lee Enfields etc where a pull through was the primary means of cleaning.

It's caused by not ensuring that you are drawing the pull through straight out of the barrel.

I would imagine it would take quite a lot of use to cause wear, but if you're concerned about the muzzle crown then like you said I'd go with a one piece rod.

January 07, 2001, 23:28
Ditto what CSAcavalry said. I got an aluminum cleaning rod for my first rifle, a .22. Bent it a couple of times. Ex-Marine brother discovered me straighting it once, snatched it from me, used it to beat me about the head and shoulders, caned me with it, then wrapped it around my neck. Said that was the only proper use for such an infamous object; that grit and... a word that rhymes can become embedded in the aluminum (or plasic) and turn the cleaning rod into nasty bore sandpaper. Now I only use stainless. Bores are happy and I'm not as bruised as before too!


"Every FAL a planned and wanted FAL..."

January 08, 2001, 00:05
I use the Otis pull-thru system. The pull thru cable is steel aircraft cable that is plastic coated and the threaded fittings on the end are brass. I have had the rifle/pistol kit for about 2 years now. I like it better than any rod system I've used. I can carry 7 different brushes, cleaning solvent, patches, cables, etc. all in the little kit. It is very portable.

The biggest advantage is that you can pull a VERY tight patch through the bore. Using a rod, you can't make the patch too tight or there is a danger of the rod bending and rubbing the barrel. You get 6 passes with each of the special otis patches. I use only 1 patch per weapon for cleaning. 6 passes is enough even on dirty bores. I can clean a bore very quickly and cleanly. You can use regular patches also, but the otis ones are like 5 cents each and work so well.

It was the best $40 I've spent on cleaning equipment. Plus, it rolls up in a canvas pouch 4 inches in diameter and 2 inches thick. The pouch has a belt slot; there is no need to compromise on cleaning in the field.


jon coppenbarger
January 08, 2001, 00:18
well I use a dewey one piece rod and it works great. I have not tried this out on my fal but I will ckeck it out. a trick we used to do on our m1a rifles was take a 12 ga. shotgun aa hull and remove the primer and drill out the primer pocket part way till your dewey shaft will slide threw it. then put the shotshell over the muzzle and just push the shaft back and forth to clean and lube. by dueing this it centers your cleaning shaft and the sides of the shaft will not come into contact with the bore. works great.with the different sizes on a fal like heavy barrel, just a plain barrel or a number of flashhiders or brakes you may have to try a few sizes of shotshell out. but the nice thinf is you just leave it on the shaft and it fits snug on your barrel and the most important it works. cheap but efective

January 08, 2001, 01:10
One trick I used before I got my Dewey rods was to get a long piece of shrink tube from the local elecrical supply house and shrink it onto my aluminum and M-16 rods. I use a nylon coated rod now. I wipe off the rod after brushing, and between patches. It's surprising what comes off that rod. On my best barrels I push the brush through from the breech end and remove the brush before pulling the rod back through. It's extra work, but it's worth it to me, to protect the crown. I know, it's bordering on obsession! I'm one of those guys that love cleaning guns as much as I love to shoot them. Give me an old Lee-Enfield or Mauser and a bottle of Shooters Choice, and I'll lose track of time for hours! There's a plus side though. Sometimes, mainly on surplus rifles, what I at first thought was pitting near the muzzle was actually copper fouling. BTW Some claim that a one piece brass rod is the only way to go. Harder than aluminum, (won't pick up grit) but softer than steel.

To each his own, I guess.

January 08, 2001, 01:53
What is this grit that everyone always talks about? Where does it come from? What is it made of? Would it help if you wiped the rod off after every stroke? Wouldn't it be better for it to embed itself in a coated rod, instead of being driven into the barrel with a stainless rod? If your barrel is stainless, should you really use a stainless rod?

I think this is one of those old time myths. Use what ever ONE piece rod that makes you feel good. Clean from the breach if you can. The most important thing is keep it clean.

January 08, 2001, 12:36
Originally posted by Radio:
Ex-Marine brother discovered me straighting it once, snatched it from me, used it to beat me about the head and shoulders, caned me with it, then wrapped it around my neck. Said that was the only proper use for such an infamous object; that grit and... a word that rhymes can become embedded in the aluminum (or plasic) and turn the cleaning rod into nasty bore sandpaper. Now I only use stainless. Bores are happy and I'm not as bruised as before too!


Doggone Radio, I'm glad you survived http://www.fnfal.com/forums/smile.gif

January 08, 2001, 12:54
Jon: Please tell me you didn't use a AA hull that was still reloadable!!! http://www.fnfal.com/forums/wink.gif

Air Assault!
Maybe life is like a ride on the freeway, dodging bullets while you're trying to find your way-The Offspring

January 08, 2001, 14:40
I really like the Otis kit. As slayer noted, you can pull a really tight patch through the bore. Another advantage is that you can clear from the chamber on lever action as well.

Aluminum rods have a surface oxidation, aluminum oxide, a really tuff abrasive used for sanding.

I guess the "grit" is from when you drop your cleaning rod in the dirt? Shooting a bullet through all that "grit" has got to be tougher on a bore than pushing the cleaning rod through.

January 08, 2001, 17:07
I just use the standard M-16 cleaning kit and a can of spray brake cleaner. It seems to work well enough for me.

January 08, 2001, 17:57
"Grit" could be dirt, sand, loosened powder residue, aluminum oxide, whatever. If it's in there, I want it out. If it's on my cleaning rod I wipe it off. Am I sure it's there? No. Will I take precautions? Yes. It's MY gun.

There have been a million discussions like this over the years. Shooters Choice vs. Sweets. Slotted tips vs. brass jags. Push vs. pull. Jointed rods vs. one piece rods vs. bore snakes. Condom vs. no condom. Either way it's MY gun. http://www.fnfal.com/forums/smile.gif

If a guy pours boiling water through the bore and calls it clean, it's no skin off my back. It's HIS gun. Like I said before; To each his own.